The Mystic and the Madman
It’s said that only the mystic or the mad see God. And the most natural thing in existence to love madly is God or the source of life itself. There’s only a fine line between a mystic and a madman. The mystic has to be willingly reduced to nothing and somehow contain the reaction of the emotional self now exposed under the penetrating light of the spirit – without going mad. The love of God is mad in the eyes of the world; for God is nothing and the world always loves something as an object, icon or new experience.
As the world exists to keep everyone busy and distracted from the truth of life, the human race wilts under the pressure to discover something of value. But because there’s nothing of real value in their lives, most people become psychologically and emotionally attached in their relationships, and consequently become vulnerable to the fear of loss. Thus they are inwardly on the verge of madness because the truth of life is that all must leave or die. However, for most people the prospect of death is so shocking that it remains the ultimate taboo subject. It’s reassuring to believe that we’re all progressing towards a better future, when it’s demonstrable that things are becoming progressively worse.
There are three phases of madness in the spiritual process. The first phase is the entry of the spirit into the brain, which initiates an inward turn towards the source of reality within the body. In some extreme cases, the effects can be so overwhelming that people are institutionalised for their own protection. The second phase, perhaps some years later, is the realisation of the possessive force of the psychic self – the madness now exposed as the thinking disease and emotional suffering. The challenge of the spiritual life at all times is to remain vertical and true through being as practical as possible in the everyday affairs of living. In this way, the madness is prevented from becoming excessive and a relative harmony is maintained.
The third phase of madness, possibly a decade or so later, is the realisation that the whole world is mad and that I, the man or woman, am not. But who would believe it? The integrity of the spiritual process is that to be liberated from the constraints of ignorance, I must confront all that has yet to be faced as unconscious living in the past. Just like walking the high wire where the balance between life and death is minute, so in the inner descent the line between madness and sanity can be precarious. But all is well, for there is something more infinitely profound which supports the entire production of life. This is the virtue that will preserve the essential dignity of the individual, even unto death or derision by the world.
The true mystic is he or she who loves God more than anything else in the world. Such unwavering devotion attracts forces in existence that will test the resolve of that person and eliminate any false notions of reality. Just how mad someone is can be measured by the belief in the world to provide peace as an uninterrupted state of being. How long the condition of madness lasts is determined by the diminishing resistance to the call of the spirit and the surrender to the sanity of pure unconditional love.
Extract from e-book: ‘Deeper into the Mystery’.