Pages

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Eschatology entails the danger that the sadhak will be seduced into looking ahead to the future

The big debate concerning these questions is not between creationists and evolutionists, because that debate is a bit silly and childish. But the big issue is really between people who believe in evolution with design and the ones who believe in evolution without design. Aurobindo belonged to the former group. His faith in God´s plan with the world was unshakable. He believed that everything in the cosmos was heading towards ultimate unification in Godhead. For him it was the one crucial axiom that made trust and surrender possible. The great truth of this axiom was to be found in the deep stillness of meditation. It was revealed to Aurobindo in the depth of his ecstasy.
I do not want to question this theory, because it might be true. Nothing, in fact, might even be more true than this one theory, I say with reverence. Many mystics and many pious believers insist that there is a spiritual plan that governs the world. They have experienced it to the marrow of their bones, so they say. We can use their testimonies to strengthen the case of Aurobindo and the other philosophers of evolution.
But the great problem with this theory is that it might easily slip into spiritual pathology. This has unfortunately happened to all the major world religions. Even more strongly so in many religious cults. This pathology is called eschatology, the belief that at a certain moment in time the end of evolution will definitely and conclusively been reached. Then the worlds will have reached the end of the Great Cycle and will again be re-united in Brahma. Or Jesus or the Messiah will have come down from heaven to found a new spiritual constitution on earth. This belief easily wants to see itself fulfilled. So it has happened numerous times in history that religious cults have assigned a special date on the calendar to the coming of this Judgment Day and Final Delivery, each time to their own disappointment, when they saw the clock strike twelve and nothing eventually happened. Or worse still: complete cults have committed suicide in the sure belief that their souls had reached the ending of time, like it happened with the followers of rev. Jim Jones in Jonestown, Guyana, in the seventies. Even Mirra Alfassa, ´the Mother´ of Aurobindo´s ashram in Pondicherry, suffered from an attack of eschatology, when she declared one beautiful summer day in the year 1958 that ´the Supramental has finally descended to earth´. It is no small wonder that such proclamations provoke bouts of mass hysteria, when prophesied by leaders with authority.
As mysticism is concerned this eschatology entails the danger that the sadhak will be seduced into looking ahead to the future, to a time when hopefully all of his problems will have come to an end, instead of completely living in the Here and Now of the one and only reality there is. Then ´the plan´ easily slips in and all mystical effectivity will be lost. For then the aspiring mystic will bring all his hopes and expectations to his meditations. And again will there be a someone who is doing something in order to reach something. But all hopes and expectations must be cleared away from consciousness. Only then can Grace happen, if she chooses to do so. Grace happens only out of grace. It is not of our doing. Mysticism should only concern itself with the nihil...home.wxs.nl Amsterdam, May 10 2006

2 comments:

  1. My inaugural address at the Great White Throne Judgment of the Dead, after I have raptured out billions! The Secret Rapture soon, by my hand!
    Read My Inaugural Address
    My Site=http://www.angelfire.com/crazy/spaceman
    Your jaw will drop!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Even Mirra Alfassa, ´the Mother´ of Aurobindo´s ashram in Pondicherry, suffered from an attack of eschatology, when she declared one beautiful summer day in the year 1958 that ´the Supramental has finally descended to earth´.

    Well, it was true, the supramental descended in the earth consciousness.

    ReplyDelete