Monday, May 4, 2009

Awe and Eternity

Awe is what moves us forward--Joseph Campbell

Awe is an intuition for the dignity of all things, a realization that things not only are what they are, but also stand, however remotely, for something supreme. Awe is a sense for the transcendence, for the reference everywhere to the mystery beyond all things. It enables us to perceive in the world intimations of the divine... to sense the ultimate in the common and the simple; to feel in the rush of the passing, the stillness of the eternal. What we cannot comprehend by analysis, we become aware of in awe.

Who Is Man? by Abraham Joshua Heschel


The soul, wrote Martin Buber in Tales of the Hasidim, is like the Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur, where in the Temple, the High Priest recites the Avodah, עבודה‎, the prayer of remembrance, "and thus he spoke." For he had not forgotten the time his soul was in the body of a High Priest of Jerusalem, and he had no need to learn from the outside how they had served in the temple.
Once he himself related, " I have been ten times in this world: I was a priest, a prince, a king, an exilarch, rosh galut ראש גלות. I was ten different kinds of dignitary. But I never learned to love mankind perfectly. And so I was sent forth again and again in order to perfect my love. If I succeed this time, I shall never return again."
Tales of the Hasidim, by Martin Buber


Visions: Memories, Dreams, Reflections, Carl Jung writes, When face to face with such wholeness, a moment of near eternity, one is speechless, for it scarcely can be comprehended. The objectivity that I experienced in the dream, the bliss, and the visions form part of a completed individuation. It signifies detachment from valuations and what we call emotional ties.
In general emotional ties are very important to human beings... Emotional relationships are relationships of desire... something is wanted, expected of the other person and this binds us... Something else came about as a result of my long illness: an affirmation of things as they are, an unconditional 'yes,' an acceptance of the conditions of existence as I see them and understand them, an acceptance of my own nature...

When one lives ones own life, one must take mistakes into the bargain. Life would not be complete without them. There is no guarantee, not for a single moment, that we will not fall into error or stumble into mortal peril. We may think there is a sure road, but that would be the road of death. Then nothing happens anymore--at any rate, not the right things. Anyone who takes the sure road is as good as dead...

I understand how important it is to affirm one's own destiny. We must forge a self which can withstand the trials of the world, a self that withstands the winds and seasons of the world, one that endures the truth, that does not break down; a self that is capable of coping with fate. Then, to experience defeat is also to experience victory...

I realize that one must also accept the thoughts that go on within oneself of their own accord as part of ones reality. The categories of true and false are, of course, always present... the thoughts are more important than our subjective judgements of them, for they exist as part of our wholeness.

Visions: Memories, Dreams, Reflections by Carl Jung

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