Meeting of the Mystic Rationalists in the Cold Sharp Wintertime

Meeting of the Mystic Rationalists in the Cold Sharp Wintertime

Hello and welcome to today’s meeting of the Mystic Rationalists. We thank all who’ve ventured out on this cold and slippery night! Please help yourself to some treats in the kitchen, where my mister, a great thinker and greater cook, has spread a feast of roasted veggies and carefully prepared beans, with a delicate pine nut and cherry dressing that he invented himself way back in his bachelor days studying in old Germany, being then and there a theology student, and beliking himself to a more critical and compassionate Faust, did bend his head over the ancient tomes of yet more ancient Wittenberg. And again, thank you for joining us. We know that your lives are busy and that even in the fondest weather our mountain cabin beneath giant evergreens and tilted—not, we hope, to precariously!—over a winding river that yet moves beneath a sheet of hardened snow: I say, we know that even in summer’s richest patience, this is quite a trek; and so we again thank you for your attendance, for your effort, for enriching this fellowship with your own.

The business of the Rational Mystics is always the same: to advance the only cause that can truly help: the cause of wisdom. Too long have reason and spirituality considered themselves at odds; too long have they mistook one another and themselves, attempting to live apart and justify themselves without the other’s company. What folly! The old Latin-weilding theologians perhaps did humanity a disservice when they reasoned that revealed wisdom and reasoned wisdom must exactly coincide. From there we slid into incoherent notions that science somehow agreed with the details of middle ages catholic theology, which of course soon sent well-intentioned seekers reeling in confusion and eventual rebellion. The misunderstanding was two-fold: both the reach of revelation and science were oversold, and the necessity of experienced spiritual insight overlooked. Regrettable, to be sure.

Mystic Rationalists take another approach: for our thoughts and feelings to make sense and matter to us, they must be intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually coherent; but the way to achieve that is not by demanding the intellect, emotions, and spirit understand and agree in a completely literal, systemitizable way, but rather that they agree as a whole and understand one another adequately for the spirit—which is wisest and best—to guide the intellect and emotions, which lack the completely unassailable wisdom of the inner Light, but whose clarity and coherency we nonetheless need to relate meaningfully to our own ideas and feelings. The path is therefore not an argument for why God exists and agrees with xyz theology, but merely an argument that points out the need for the inner Light to relate meaningfully to one’s ideas and feelings, the possibility that such a meaningful relationship could proceed in a poetic though of course not literal sense (for the infinite Light could conceivably make itself known to finite thought and feeling, but of course not in a literal, definitive, 1:1-translation sense), the method that would have to work for the result to mean anything to us—namely thinking and feeling aware, clear, honest, accurate, competent, kind, and joyfully generous (unless that inborn sense of how meaningful and worthy thinking and acting is satisfied, we are divorced from the only path we have towards thoughts and actions that mean anything to us, or that we can even stand)—, and the guardrails that would also have to be kept within for the results to be worth anything to us—”How much do I love the Light within with all my heart and soul and mind? How much do I know and treat everyone as I treat myself? How much do I know and live within the understanding that we are all of us in this together? How much am I ruled by kind compassionate joyful generosity rather than greed, spite, meanness, anger, contempt, cruelty, egotrip, and all the other nasties?”

Mystic Rationalist let us pray together, practice together, study together, grow together. How can we really help one another, our groups, our neighborhoods, townships, communities, nation states, our world? What does it mean to live well? What is joyful decent creation? What is a beautiful dance—given what we are, creatures of body, mind, heart, and inscrutable but still very felt and to some degree relatable soullight—? Huh? What is the way forward for everyone????

Authors: AMW/BW, copyright of course AMW, as BW is only an imagined friend and has not the legal right to hold a copyright

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