St. Luke Drawing the Virgin and Christ Child
Rogier van der Weyden
All of these words are supposed to mean glory, yet every one of them is of this world.
They are all creatures — that is, they describe what is created. Yet real glory rises above creation and illuminates it; and thus there are no real words for it but the word Glory itself, which shines into the soul directly from God under His everlasting light.
When this light shines into the soul, one wants to cast oneself down in abjection and humility, because one is so low and the Lord is so Glorious that no other action seems possible.
This light shines on everything I am; and all of what I am is fallen.
Even in its fallen state, it is good, because all of creation is directly emanated from the heart of the Lord, and is good in itself; yet as I am, I can't be good. And when I am exposed to Glory, for the first time, I understand this.
No one talks directly of these things anymore, because they lie beyond the words and the technologies we are enslaved by in these days. We love our machines more than we love each other; and we love ourselves more than we love God. Just as the law in the hands of fools becomes a weapon, so religion and philosophy in the arms of the blind become hammers, and are used to drive nails, instead of open us to God's love.
There are moments when I find myself deep within this Glory, and I clearly see there can't be any other real meaning to life. The prophets and the Saints speak of how God flows directly into us and offers us His Glory; we sing hymns about it in church. Yet it has to be much more than the form I follow; it has to be something specific that takes place within me, in which the relationship to the Lord's Glory is fully established according to His Will.
This is an action, not an aspiration; a willingness, a submission.
For some strange reason, many human beings seem to think that "consciousness" or "enlightenment" is something different than this; well, actually, people think a lot of things about such matters, but very few know the Truth, which is a secret unfolding from within. This comes into me in such a way that I feel today it must be said to everyone: that the Lord is good, and filled with Glory.
But this is not a matter for the public market; it is a matter to be tucked into the pockets of one's soul and carried with one through the day, in the hope that one can remember to reach for it when one's being and attitude come from low places, and need the elevation of the Lord's Glory to restore health to this life within.
This is why the Lord sends His Glory; that we may put it up inside ourselves for the moment when darkness is apparent, and light must enter lest we fall even from this low place we already occupy. And we are always falling; only the hands of the Lords can catch us.
In representing such things, there are countless imposters, many of them outrageous and audacious. Even the most sincere may, in the end, become proxies who have forgotten the essentials. We are all in danger, because one cannot remember the Lord by oneself, no matter how hard one tries.
Yet in every day the glory of God is unfolded within; and yes, there is truly a kingdom of heaven, even though we, unfortunately, have been assigned the role of the devils in it.