Rosicrucian Writings Online

[H. Spencer Lewis]

[From The Rosicrucian Digest February 1931]
JESUS constantly reminded His disciples and those who listened attentively to Him that the kingdom of Heaven was not only close at hand and might be contacted sooner than the multitude had expected but that the real entrance-way to this kingdom was within.
However we may view the preachments of Jesus in this regard and laying aside all of the symbolism that He may have used, the outstanding fact is that He made Heaven eminent and a kingdom which those here upon the earth might enjoy. Certainly He was not the father of the idea that the greatest or most intimate joys of Heaven were to be realized only after transition.
Those who have been inclined toward the spiritual life are often under the impression that with the coming of spiritual attunement and the consequent contact with the kingdom of Heaven brings naught but spiritual joy having its reflex in earthly joy. Such persons become disappointed and discouraged in their journey on the path toward spiritual heights by the sorrows and griefs they continue to experience and especially by the great sadness that seems to be a part of the spiritual light that gradually illumines their consciousness.
To the mystic this is easily understood and the kingdom of Heaven means to him a contact with all of the hearts and minds of the universe and with all of the joys and sorrows of human experience. Heaven cannot be a place of continuous joy for there must be sorrow and sadness as a result of the sins and errors, the griefs and pains, of the multitudes who live either in darkness or sin or who are slowly evolving to spiritual perfection.
It is true that the key-note of mystical life is joy and that this joy is hidden from those who do not enter into the mystical life and is therefore deep and pure. But this joy does not preclude a sensitiveness to all of the sorrows and grief of mankind.
It is said that Jesus was a man of great sorrow and He was often seen to weep and to express in His countenance as well as in His words and attitude, the suffering He felt from those around Him. Yet Jesus often rejoiced and His joy was profound on many occasions. No great master can be wholly happy all the time nor is he always sorrowful. The way of the spiritual life and of the mystical life is the way of abundant living, a certain fullness of living that brings to the consciousness of each individual a keen appreciation of the heartaches as well as the joys and ambitions, the disappointments and sorrows of all living creatures.
While the mystical life is filled with these impressions of sorrow and grief the sadness is not like unto that of the sadness of one who is steeped in sin. The key-note of the sinful life is sadness and not joy. But the sadness of the sinner is different from the sadness and sorrow of the mystic or the spiritual being. The sadness of the sinner is a secret sadness which is constantly eating its way relentlessly into the core of a sinner's heart, as the mystics tell us. He is ever conscious of the fact that he is out of harmony not only with the higher nature of himself but with the higher principles of the entire universe. Most of his sins must remain secret in order that he may enjoy life and liberty and the association of men.
The sinner is a coward at heart in most instances, inasmuch as he fears above everything else the possible facing of his own sin and the consequent results. He not only fears to face his fellow beings and admit to them the sins he has committed but he fears to face his own reflection in the mirror and to admit unto himself the evil of his ways. How could it be otherwise with one who has wilfully chosen to be an enemy of mankind and a disobedient child of his Father? The sinner is always an enemy of civilization, an enemy of righteousness and an enemy of better instincts in the human race; therefore, his sins torment him and enslave him and in their bitter mockery force him to suffer as no other sorrows in life can cause him to suffer.
It is fortunate also for the human race that sin administers its own chastizement and if there is any vengeance resulting from sin it is the automatic action of its own discord. God the Father of all beings is merciful and even the average human is merciful to the sinner but sin is unmerciful in its own condemnation and in the punishment it constantly wreaks upon the individual. There is no sadder heart, no heart more heavy with grief and pain than the heart of the conscious sinner. It causes mental as well as moral and physical anguish and disorder and is the cause of disease and destruction. Truly the sinner is in sorrow constantly and eternally until he finds salvation.
The mystic, on the other hand, is sensitive not only to the joys and blessings, the gladness and the songs of merriment that are in the hearts of the good and righteous but to the grief, remorse, regret, and heartaches of the sinful. For this reason the mystic finds his hours of thoughtfulness divided between the ecstasy of sublime spiritual joy and the bitterness of the earthly cup of life as represented in the heart of the sinful. The mystic becomes conscious of the fact that the sinner may be redeemed and may be saved, and through grace and spiritual light he may be saved from himself and from the torments of the evil within him and yet because he refuses the Way to salvation he wilfully prolongs his suffering.
The Father of us all is saddened by this wilful attitude and the host of angels and the holy assembly of masters in the Cosmic bow their heads in grief as they realize that sinful man holds himself enslaved in grief and pain because he refuses to see the Light or to venture upon the Way to salvation. The mystic, ever attuned to the consciousness of God and the Heavenly hosts, senses what they sense and shares to some degree in their sorrow and grief. Thus the mystic passes his time in moving from great joy to great sorrow and he feels the pulse of the universe, the heart of man, and the spirit of God working in all things and moving in all beings.
It is this complete attunement with all of the constructive and operative forces of the universe and with the combined consciousness of all beings that makes the mystic's life an abundant life, a life of fullness and supreme effulgence. It makes life not only more complex but more complete and more interesting. It robs the idle hours of the shadows and it takes from our earthly existence all sense of isolation and separateness from our kith and kin and from our Heavenly Father. It makes the horizon of sunrise tinted with the most magnificent colors of human experience and paints the sky of mid-day with a splendour of life that can only come through living life in all its fullness. It makes the golden sunset at the close of day a panorama of human contact and an expression of spiritual and worldly interests combined to manifest God and His magnificent powers.
The mystic sees in every human being a real brother and sister, a close kin through every human and spiritual association. The interests of his human relatives are his interests, for the interests of mankind are united and constitute one grand experience for the evolution of the soul. The mystical life opens wide the portals of human understanding, human sympathy, and human attunement, and through this comes a closer attunement with the spiritual consciousness that pervades all beings. This is the key-note of the power that comes into the very being of every mystic and enables him to wield an influence for good in the lives of others. Through his attunement and contact with the soul in each individual around him he becomes closer attuned with God and God's view-point and in this manner the mystic becomes a channel of divine comprehension, is not only a servant unto God but a servant unto man and one of God's chosen workers.
The sinner or the one who chooses to dwell in darkness and who refrains from stepping on the narrow path that leads to spiritual power is constantly separated from the human heart of all beings and like unto a prisoner held in his own prison by his own choosing and through his own commandment. He does not ostracize society but he ostracizes himself. He does not push his human kin from him but tears himself away from them so that in his sin and remorse he may abide in secrecy and avoid the fearful Light of condemnation. He refuses to listen to the voice of mercy and he hesitates to accept the Grace of God and save himself from the sorrow of his own making. He does not know or else he wills not to understand that the grace of forgiveness and the mercy of God's love can cleanse him and wipe away his sins and purify his heart and bring joy and peace in the twinkling of an eye. He convicts himself and chastizes his flesh while tormenting his heart and destroying his mind in the evil of his ways. No real joy can come to him since the joy that the sinner experiences is spurious and in every sense fictitious and unreal. Eternal life is withheld from him for he separates himself from all contact with it.
The mystic, on the other hand, has placed himself in communion with the eternally constructive forces and is enjoying the influx of new life and new power every moment that he lives. It is a joyous living, with all of the sorrows and griefs, for the end is always a beautiful one and the spiritual goal at the end of the journey is ever a magnificent picture, inspiring and filled with love and mercy begetting a new life and a life eternal.

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