April 11, 2016 at 10:16 pm #14453
My interior ‚Äėmysticism‚Äô is a guided mysticism . . .
Mysticism comes about, I am convinced, from the interiorization of our life/faith/spiritiual lives and is guided not according to our desires, but guided by the Holy Spirit (however, along with God, one defines it).
Obviously, by studying our own mystical experience(s), we can develop a radar that will lead us to understanding our very deep connection to all that exists.¬† Nature, the sky, the moon, the dog, our children, our environments can all be conduits to being ‚Äėabsorbed‚Äô by these elements and to allow us to transcend our current realities.¬† It is in these moments of connectiveness, with our selves, our world, our deepest pysche that we can experience the mystical.¬† This will be differently experienced by each one of us.
As for resources, all the authors quoted, the sources of inspiration are there for us to see that having a mystical experience is not to have to look for it, prepare for it, develop it.¬† It is not, in my opinion, something we can create.¬† It simply happens.¬† It can happen as you open your oven door and see those beautiful and perfect loaves of bread; when a child, much to embarassment of a mother, comes to you and offers a lick of her lollipop; sitting quietly in your garden admiring the beauty of a flower, even if it is just a dandelion.
I was fortunate to live in Norwich, Norfolk, England, for a year (I was on a teaching exchange program) where I visited Julian of Norwich‚Äôs ‚Äėcave‚Äô, at St Julian‚Äôs church.¬† Completely destroyed in the bombings of World War II, it was rebuilt in the 1950s according to historical plans, and still retains its medieval appearance.¬† In the Norwich area, it was the only re-constructed church among the many destroyed during various bombings.
But although this church is a small and rebuilt building, tucked away in Norwich‚Äôs City Centre, St Julian is one of the most famous of Norwich‚Äôs churches because it is associated with the mystical visions of the Blessed Mother Julian of Norwich. Both church and mystic took their name from the adjacent Priory; in a way, it is a coincidence that they share it.
When Dame Julian came here, the church looked much as it did in the early modern times.¬† Incidentally, Dame Julian did not actually receive her visions at this church; some people are disappointed when they discover this. In fact, we don‚Äôt know who she really was at all. She was a woman, of course, and probably of noble birth; she fell ill in the 1370s, probably in one of the outbreaks of the Black Death which carried off half Norfolk‚Äôs population between the late 1340s and the end of the century.
In her deathbed delirium, she claimed, she received mystical visions, which she termed Revelations of Divine Love. On her unexpected recovery, she was received into holy orders, taking the name Julian, and became an Anchoress.
An Anchoress was a kind of female hermit, walled up in a room on the side of a church with a view of the altar. Meals would be passed to her, ablutions passed out, and she would offer advice to visitors; but her existence was largely a contemplative one. Her male equivalent would have been an Anchorite; there is surviving evidence of Anchorite or Anchoress cells at half a dozen East Anglian churches.¬† There is evidence of another Julian of Norwich, a man, styled as St Julian.
I have read extensively her ‚Äúrevelations‚ÄĚ and find the one quote, that is so often quoted from Mother Julian, ‚ÄúAll shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well‚Ä¶‚ÄĚ a comfort and an inspiration and I simply let it happens, no searching, no hopes but to relish the moment(s) I am with God (often happens during my Centering Prayer moments).
Go with God, the Eternal Mystic . . .
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