After I had had a vision in 1987 of the entire journey of an individual soul from God to God, I found myself back behind the wheel of a car, hurtling down Oak Street in Vancouver. I stopped at the red light ahead and looked to my left. The driver had a worried expression on his face.
I was full of bliss and almost rolled the window down and shouted at him: “It all works out in the final reel.”
That was then; this is now. I now know that there is no final reel, that we may go into total mergence with God, but, if we do, we also come forth again when the Mother calls us.
Have we a word-picture of a being in similar, not completely identical circumstances? Yes. Swami Vivekananda was an elohim, one of the seven sages that lived in the Transcendental. I don’t regard that as totally merged but it is definitely merged. Here is Sri Ramakrishna’s description of a portion of the sage leaving his realm and being born as Swami Vivekananda :
“Absorbed one day, in samadhi, Ramakrishna had found that his mind was soaring high, going beyond the physical universe of the sun, moon, and stars, and passing into the subtle region of ideas. As it continued to ascend, the forms of gods and goddesses were left behind, and it crossed the luminous barrier separating the phenomenal universe from the Absolute, entering finally the transcendental realm.
“There Ramakrishna saw seven venerable sages absorbed in meditation. These, he thought, must have surpassed even the gods and goddesses in wisdom and holiness, and as he was admiring their unique spirituality he saw a portion of the undifferentiated Absolute become congealed, as it were, and take the form of a Divine Child.
“Clambering upon the lap of one of the sages and gently clasping his neck with His soft arms, the Child whispered something in his ear, and at this magic touch the sage awoke from meditation. He fixed his half-open eyes upon the wondrous Child, who said in great joy: ‘I am going down to Earth. Won’t you come with me?’
“With a benign look the sage expressed assent and returned into deep spiritual ecstasy. Ramakrishna was amazed to observe that a tiny portion of the sage, however, descended to earth, taking the form of light, which struck the house in Calcutta where Narendra’s family lived, and when he saw Narendra [later Swami Vivekananda] for the first time, he at once recognized him as the incarnation of that sage.
“He also admitted that the Divine Child who brought about the descent of the rishi [or sage] was none other than himself.” (1)
The journey from Third Dimension on upwards can be captured in just two words: Let go.
Let go of all the hatreds, all the dislikes, all the preferences. Let go of all the judgments, all the gossip, all the bad impressions.
If you can let go of the root vasanas and core issues and all the false beliefs, then what you’d find is … yourself.
I lie underneath all the overburden of hatreds, judgments, etc.
I am always pristine pure there. As Pope Innocent said in Brother Sun, Sister Moon, “In our obsession with original sin, we do often forget original innocence.”
Plotinus talked of polishing the statue until the sheen shines through:
“Do as does the sculptor of a statue that is to be beautified: he cuts away here, he smooths it there, he makes this line lighter, this other one purer, until he disengages beautiful lineaments in the marble. Do you this, too. Cut away all that is excessive. Straighten all that is crooked, bring light to all that is overcast, labor to make all one radiance of beauty. Never cease “working at the statue” until there shines out upon you from it the divine sheen of virtue.” (2)
All is cutting away, polishing, releasing the divine sheen that’s already there.
What can I release today? What can I let go of? What can I hand over to the Mother to be eradicated in exchange for a burst of her Divine Love?
(1) Swami Nikhilananda, trans. Vivekananda: The Yogas and Other Works. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1953, 14.
(2) Plotinus in Elmer O’Brien, Essential Plotinus, 42-3.