Most of us have quietly endured a life-long debate between our senses and our sciences:
- It’s obvious, to almost anyone who has ever lived, that the Earth is solid and real beneath our feet, fixed in place, while the sun is just a bright, little heavenly body that moves across the sky every day. Our five senses tell us in no uncertain terms that that is a fact.
- Well, the scientific community claims that our five senses have limitations. Scientific instruments, they argue, can see the bigger picture, and have proved that the Earth spins on its axis while revolving around the massive sun. So the sun just looks like a little light source moving across the sky, but that’s an illusion. Our five senses are stuck in the illusion because they can’t perceive the bigger picture, the truth that the Earth spins around the sun. The truth according to science.
- So whom do we believe?… our intimate five senses, or our clever scientists who preach a more complicated version of reality?
- Most of us trust our senses but also have faith in our sciences, which have a pretty good track record of reliability and honesty. Science has shown us convincingly that a lot of reality is invisible to us… imperceptible to our 5 senses.
Now it’s time to take the discussion to the next level: our sciences vs our mystics.
- It’s obvious to mainstream science that the material universe is solid and real, perceptible and measurable by our scientific instruments. It is the extent of all-that-is. Scientific instruments tell us in no uncertain terms that that is a fact.
- Well, spiritual seekers and mystics claim that our scientific instruments have limitations. Our own finer senses, they argue, can perceive the bigger picture, and have proved that our material universe is superimposed by a vast, mostly invisible omniverse flourishing with spiritual life. That vast omniverse is created and sustained by a living central source that emits pure, perfect consciousness. That creative consciousness and its source are the reality. The many universes look and feel real to their inhabitants, but they are just illusions.
- So whom do we believe?… the Newtonian scientists with a reliable track record spanning several hundred years, or the mystics who’ve been preaching the same story for many thousands of years?
- Most of us trust our sciences but also have faith in our mystics and spiritual leaders, whose descriptions of finer truths ring true at the center of our being.
So, according to most mystics down through the ages, these are the basic truths of existence:
- God or Allah or Brahman is the creator and sustainer of everything.
- You and I and every living thing… each has a piece of God within us… a soul or rūḥ or atman, and that spark of God at the center of our being is our true self.
- Our dense, blemished carnal bodies are just illusory vehicles that our soul uses to navigate the illusions of the material world.
- The only truth that we possess as a human being is found at the center of our being, in our soul.
- The moments of joy and suffering we experience from day to day in the course of a lifetime are just short scenes in the timeless dream of our soul.
To access truth at the center of our being, we can simply:
- Turn off the cacophony of the 5 senses,
- Switch off the rational thinking of the scientific mind, and
- Awaken the finer senses within us, for example, through meditation, contemplation, or serious daydreaming.
That’s how we find God and truth… not through our 5 senses, and not through our sciences. We look within.
So beautifully said and so true!
This is a very nice composition about the journey…thank you, Mark.
A mind that is too busy must learn to culture stillness to have healing and a glimpse of the mysteries within each of us.
nicely said, John,