christian mysticism is very much misunderstood, for it is simply developing intimacy with the Divine within yourself, and entering Oneness herein. Essentially, the Mystic, as a spiritual lover, communes with God as the Beloved, for this is a divinely heartfelt relationship. Anything else you may hear is not genuine mysticism. The ideas of phenomenalism, the supernatural, magic, witchcraft, voodoo, Satanism, and so forth, primarily thrive in the mental or the psychic planes. These dark aspects have nothing to do with real Mysticism. That which thrives in and emanates from the Divine Reality is true Mysticism, wherein the true Mystic lives.
The Mystic knows that when he speaks of the things he feels and sees that reflect the inner Reality, especially to people that have no understanding of these things, he will be scoffed and ridiculed. They judge him as being strange if not downright crazy. This is why he often keeps to himself. He will speak of these things to others on the Mystical Path, for they will receive him, especially genuine seekers who yearn for the Truth and not just dogmatic ideas. What seems normal and true to him is often viewed as ludicrous to others. Likewise, the Mystic may view others’ beliefs as erroneous and absurd, if not simply shallow and lacking in genuine spiritual experience. For example, the typical fundamentalist Christian sees God as outside himself and far away. In fact, he has no idea where to locate God, which in ancient times was referred to as the Unknown God. Although God is unknown to many people, He is not by any means unknowable, for the path of the Mystic is to learn to know God within his heart, and to commune with Him.
Early Mystics spoke of becoming one with God, often referred to as Divine Union; however, fundamentalists might call this blasphemy, because they believe God is somewhere outside of their reality, which is, incidentally, not a very real reality, since it does not incorporate God being within it. They believe that people are supposed to be separate from God, and that they deserve this separation because of their despicable sins, but the Mystic sees this idea of separation from God as erroneous and detrimental to spiritual growth. He recognizes that evil is a concept that appears to be very real in the physical world, but in the greater Reality, evil is merely an illusion, another concept which defines mankind’s separation from God. From evil comes sin, which is simply people’s decision to disobey God, because they express themselves through free will. But this is the way people learn and grow, through trial and error, until they learn to hear the voice of God within, that they may reach harmony with God.
Although the idea that Christians’ sins will be forgiven them by grace through Jesus Christ is an acceptable one, we can take this a step further by declaring that these sins are illusion, for they are confined only to a world which exists in illusion, a world which does not contain God, or it sees Him as either outside of it, or that God does not exist at all, according to atheists. When people see the world in this way, they have created an illusion, one of great emptiness. What fundamentalists call “sin” is primarily a misdirection of God’s power, which has been given to us in order to create in this world. By our free will, we choose to use it correctly or to abuse it. In this process we learn that what we sow we shall reap, be it good or bad, as certain traditions call this karma. This is why when we learn to listen to the Divine Voice within, we will learn the correct use of power.
People of many different religions seek God outside of themselves, and as long as they do this, they will be missing the Reality. When they realize the truth is right under their noses, that God is within their very minds, hearts, and souls, closer than hands and feet, then they have begun the way of the Mystic. When you accept that God is intrinsically in this world, and in your heart, evil and sin cease to exist in this Reality. In fact, it would be impossible for evil to exist in the higher vibrational levels of God’s Reality, although it does definitely seem to be very real in the physical world. Ultimately, evil is not real because it declares a separate God; it proclaims that the inner Divinity that you truly are is not really a part of you, or is not real at all, that it is the illusion. Fortunately, this idea has no ground to stand on, especially when Jesus Christ himself said, “I and my Father are one.” This is true for every single soul, but each one must come to realize this divine unity, because this is the journey of the Mystic.
The Mystic realizes this dense physical world is limited and impermanent, for it consists of a lower vibration. When the mind and heart of the Mystic ascends into higher consciousness of the Divine, or Cosmic Consciousness, he is being lifted higher in vibration. This often occurs because he has become accustomed to entering a deep meditative state due to regular practice, and frequently he will have spiritual experiences, because he is learning to unite with his inner Source, for he yearns to live in this state always. However, he also knows that isolating himself in order to maintain a state of continual communion with the Divine is not practical. He must learn to find the Divine Presence in the wide diversity of the physical world as well, whether it is through socializing, business, nature, entertainment, and various other worldly interactions, etc. He realizes that attaining a healthy balance between the physical and spiritual planes is necessary.
When he becomes engrossed too much in one or the other, this leads to a state of unbalance. The Mystic knows he has work to do in this denser world; he cannot remain in contemplative seclusion indefinitely, in an attempt to amalgamated with the Absolute, as many recluses in the past have endeavored to accomplish while ignoring the world around them. However, as long as he interacts with the physical world, he should apply himself and be a worthy example to others, and to serve them and uplift them to a higher level of reality. He will benefit himself and others by maintaining a balance of the active life of service and the quiet life of contemplation, where both are necessary in the Mystic’s life. There is a time to be active and a time for quietism.