From THE WEB IN THE SEA ~ Alice O. Howell

"Let me show you something, and then you tell me what you think. You gave me an idea."

We walked down to where the beach was smooth, hard, and firm. You ... drew a diagram in the sand. It looked like this:

"If what you are saying is true, then it is as if all the great esoteric religions offer an entrance to a central mystery, the dot in the middle. So, supposing you as a Hindu and I as a Christian go into our respective temples and follow the teachings of our respective scriptures to the best of our ability. Then it might be possible for both of us, through understanding of the symbolic import of what we are doing, to discover an inner process--by inner, I mean inside of us as individuals--that would lead us further into the inner circle."

I was dumbfounded.

"You see," you continued, "once you get to the inner circle there are no more divisions."

I nodded my head.

"I don't know where to put the atheists and agnostics--"

I chimed in, "Atheists are probably people who rejected the god of the level beneath them. Agnostics are like those who would run around the circle never going in one of the entrances or, at least, just sticking their noses in the door and sniffing. I always remember something that Ramakrishna said: 'Digging a lot of shallow holes will never get you a well.' "

"What would you call the inner circle?" you wondered.

"I think that would be the esoteric tradition of each of the religions. The mystical tradition."

"You mean the Kabbalah for Judaism, or the Sufi tradition in Islam--that kind of teaching?"

"Exactly. The esoteric or inner practice depends on the enactment of the outer mystery deep within the soul of the individual. Each religion provides for this. So when an individual reaches that inner light, he or she cannot fail to recognize it in others. All religions consider such people as saints, and they are depicted with a halo or a nimbus around them. The Sufis show a man whose head is a flame of light, of love. The Buddha has a raised peak to his head. And the enlightened ones of Africa and South America are also shown as having something emerging from the top of their heads. It shows the connection to higher consciousness."



Jung, Sophia, and the Geometry of the Soul

by Alice O. Howell

"Look for the sacred in the commonplace!" :)