Saturday, December 20, 2014

The meaning of the Lord

 One reader asked recently that I explain what I mean by the words "the Lord" and "divine inflow."

Speaking as one with experience of these subjects, I must say it's a challenge. One can't know what the Lord is without a direct experience; and the Lord is not anything that one can imagine.

Let me first say that we all want to come to the Lord, I think, principally through one of two faculties: reason (the intellect) or emotion — that is, desire or desperation. Desire, if we have a fervent wish for a higher authority in our lives; desperation, if we feel so besieged that we feel we must have such an authority, if only to save us.

It is, however, just as impossible to reason out the Lord as it is to crave Him; and I use the traditional masculine appellation here simply because it is traditional.

I am reminded of what my own teacher said when I told her I had been touched by the Virgin Mary in Rome.

"...How did you know it was Mary?" she said.

And this is exactly how it is with everyone: one thinks one can reason out who or what the Lord is, "know" it, come up with a set of rational explanations or thoughts that explain it. As it happens, this is not only impossible, but entirely unnecessary. The authority of the Lord arrives without brokerage, and there need be no thought about whether it is the Lord or not when it arrives.

Such an authority is absolutely not my own authority, and there can be no confusion about it; nor can I think up such an authority within myself.

 Part of the great difficulty is that everybody wants to have an authority that they can contradict if they absolutely have to — that is, we always want authority to be invested in human beings, their principles, institutions, and so on, even if we overtly claim that they are representatives of God. In the end, covertly, we always know in some secret place within ourselves that these authorities are still human, and if we really, really need to, we can reject them — in other words, the entire psychological structure of man and woman, such as they exist in the average individual, always reserves the right to be the absolute and final authority.

There is no room for God in this structure; we see ourselves as the Lord. It reminds me of one of my relatives by marriage, who is a professed atheist. This particular individual does not see that they do worship a God; the God just happens to be themselves. And so, to one degree or another, it is with all of us.

 Yet the authority of the Lord can arrive in us through sensation. That is to say, the authority of the Lord is a subtle force that flows into the body — leading us to the question of divine inflow. Divine inflow is the mechanism whereby the Lord makes Himself known. There can be no ambiguity of understanding in receiving this: and, in fact, this is exactly what we are supposed to do — receive the Lord. We do so, furthermore, quite literally within the body and blood of Christ, that is, within our own body and blood, which Christ took on by taking on our own body and blood, and which we share with Him. There are other analogies and correct interpretations belonging to other religions, but I will simply offer the Christian one here, since it is quite specific and very illustrative, if it's properly understood.

The Lord is an authority unto Himself. In so far as I receive him — receive this force of Truth, which is absolute and does not need my interpretation — to this extent am I under the influence of the Lord. The entire set of notes published in its edited version as The Reality of Being is, in fact, about exactly this question, and although it deals with many other issues, everything in it centers around this question of receiving the Lord.

 I will state unequivocally and categorically for the readership that it is entirely possible to know the Lord, not just occasionally, or once-in-a-lifetime, but every day. The Lord has absolute authority over the affairs of man, yet the authority is an inward authority. One has to become open to the divine — that is, sacred — inward flow of the authority of the Lord in order to receive the Lord. And that is the subject for the next post.


1 comment:

  1. A deep bow of appreciation for this post. I had some deep experiences at a week-long meditation retreat very recently that were no doubt what you are writing of.

    Warm regards,



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