The Landmarks of Mysticism

Humanity undergoes a constant process of spiritual evolution; this evolution is represented by people who have had an experience of awakening.
All human beings are capable of having this experience of awakening. It is humanity's birthright.
This experience of awakening is not tied to any spiritual movement, concept, or religion.  Neither is it tied to what any specific culture designs as its"morality".
Those who have awakened have taken countless different forms, and are present in every time and place.
No two people have become awakened in the same way, though all awakened people have had a common course of experiences.  Thus, in following this course one can create the preconditions that can help lead one to the awakening condition, even though there is no formula for awakening itself.
The experience of reality is impossible to transmit through the written or spoken word. You cannot gain an experience of reality through intellectual study of an awakened person's teachings.
These teachings are nevertheless useful in a specific sense, to give glimpses of understanding that can propel one to practice exercises that will lead one to experience reality for oneself.
The teachings of awakened persons are shown indirectly, in a lesser form, through words written or spoken; then through symbols, and most accurately through techniques.
However, when an awakened person is incarnate in a body, the most direct forms of the teachings are given by his energy field, his image, and his physical words and presence.
The first two of these greater teachings remain significant for some time even after an awakened person has left the body, as long as there were those who were capable of becoming awakened that maintain the vibrancy of that "teacher".
The ultimate form of teaching an awakened person can give is in the form of initiation; where that person transmits the divine energy of awakening itself into a willing recipient, that may then be used by that recipient to fuel their own transformation at will.
Neither the lesser teachings nor the greater teachings, nor initiation itself are capable of creating awakening in anyone, ever.  They are only capable of providing a catalyst for one to awaken. Each person is completely responsible for their own awakening. Although each person is responsible, there is no physical act, discipline, hardship, or method that one can follow that will cause awakening.
No external set of morality, ethics, or laws will lead to awakening.  A mystic has to be responsible for their own morality based on the dictates of their heart.
No intellectual study will lead one to awakening.  A mystic must accept their ignorance.
No physical or energetic technique will lead one to awakening. Some techniques can repeatedly create certain effects that could even seem miraculous to common men; creating states of bliss or altered consciousness, lucid dreams, energetic manipulation of reality around oneself.  A mystic must accept these signs when they occur but not misinterpret them as a sign of divine wisdom or attainment.
The act of awakening occurs only by removing attachments to these and all other pursuits, until one has returned to nature, and united to the divine.
Awakening can only happen, therefore, through a state of Grace.
This Grace is not causable by any act, but the avoidance of incorrect actions, and the emptying of the self and one's own presumptions, desires, and attachments, either slowly through practice or quickly through sudden shift, can create the opportunity for this Grace to enter one's awareness.
Thus, one must follow the path of the Mystic through the work of Uniting (yoga), working towards union in the physical, mental, emotional and energetic dimensions of one's being.
This "work" is dependent on one's inner work (upon the psychological self or the soul) as well as one's outer work (in the regular world: career, family, material conditions, friendships, relationships).
The practice of any of these spiritual techniques with the right motivations and focused both inwardly and outwardly will create a state of naturalness, and lead to inner and outer peace. Likewise, the practice of any of these spiritual techniques, the followings of teachings or "teachers", when done with motives and ends other than the attainment of awakening, will inevitably fail.  These practices when done for the wrong reasons will lead to imbalances of a person's mental health, material condition, obsession, laziness or inability to act, despondency, gossip, and delusions.
Thus, every mystic must first and foremost be aware of the need to be watchful of one's motivations, and note that if any of these symptoms arise, they need  to be rectified by returning to the source of one's pure motivations for practice.
Finally, it bears repeating that even these guidelines, intended as they are to create a fundamental basis by which to define true Mysticism, are merely an expression of the written word.  They are inaccurate in as much as the human ability to interpret and understand the transmission of the teaching by this medium in an unbiased way is highly limited.  Remember that this teaching is also imperfect. You will only find Truth within yourself.