Opening The Celestial Eye
The divine exists everywhere, in all places and holds
all forms at once.
But regular human consciousness is unable to recognize this.
Our minds work by the principle of duality.
We see things, inherently, as a division of opposites.
Our senses, left as they are, serve the mind in this.
You will experience a sensory perception, seeing or hearing or touching,
and this perception will then be sent to your mind.
The mind will interpret this perception through the structure of duality.
You see an apple, and the mind will divide the perception into criteria.
Criteria means 'classification'; you would classify the apple as 'not
an orange', or on a deeper level as 'fruit', which you'd define as 'not
a vegetable', or 'not an animal'.
This is duality; it is a process of 'nots', so that in reality your definitions
or anything at all are only negative, your mind can only understand something
as being 'not something else'.
This is entirely normal, and in mysticism at first you
will have to classify things spiritually in the same way.
All metaphysics are actually systems of classification.
The Tarot, the Kabbalah, Astrology, religious metaphysics of heavens and
hells, good and bad, are all systems of creating criteria.
Problems arise in this area when people do not comprehend this, and instead
mistake metaphysics for being real truths.
People who literally believe in astrology, or in Kabbalah, or heaven and
hells of a specific religious system, will miss the point entirely.
The useful purpose of any metaphysic, as taught in a mystery school, is
to give you a new set of criteria, to re-wire your mind and your senses
in preparation of a jump, a jump into something totally new.
Remember, metaphysics themselves are not new, they are not different from
how your mind worked before.
It is still criteria, still a filing system.
Before you filed things one way in your mind, now you file them a different
But it is inherently no better; there is nothing inherently superior in
classifying an apple as some kind of Kabbalistic symbol rather than as
'not an orange'.
If that is where you stop, you will have in fact gained nothing.
In fact, you may be worse off then before, because now you will believe
that you are experiencing wisdom or the spiritual.
You'll have gained a spiritual ego instead of a normal one.
And a spiritual ego is much worse, because it can be much harder to get
Metaphysics prepare you for the deeper experience of
This is what mystics have sometimes called 'spiritual vision', or the
You cannot go straight to this form of perception without first developing
a metaphysic; sometimes it will happen by accident, but this is very dangerous.
Someone who directly experiences the divine without going
through preparatory stages will be unprepared for the experience.
Often, they will seem to go mad.
It is an ego-shattering experience, it can separate you completely from
being able to operate in the regular world.
For people who have reached this accidentally, the result can be terrifying.
If you go straight from the regular set of criteria to dropping criteria
completely, it will shatter the ego.
At best, it may force you backwards, out of fear, into a total denial
of the experience.
Otherwise, if that cannot be achieved, it can leave you incapable of operating
in the world.
There are many people in mental asylums who have had this experience of
Sometimes you can become catatonic, unable to communicate at all in any
Or you will be so divorced from dualism that what you say will be meaningless
to a 'normal' person.
So the process has to be gradual.
Even then, early experiences of this perception, of the celestial eye,
will be awe-inspiring and sometimes terrifying.
A master will gradually prepare his students to handle these experiences.
A system of metaphysics serves to slowly open your perceptions, to allow
you to understand that there are ways to understand reality outside of
When you perceive though the celestial eye, it allows
you to see the inherent reality of any individual object.
To understand that there is a positive definition for things, that there
is an essential reality to all things that are all their own, not only
by comparison to other phenomena.
An apple is an apple.
You cannot 'know' this experience, it is beyond the mind.
You can never know what an apple is, only what it isn't.
But you can see what an apple is, when you open the senses that go beyond
At the same time, with this perception you will also
'see' how this thing you once called 'apple' is not separate from the
whole of existence.
Duality, your normal perceptions, creates an illusion of separateness.
Metaphysics, the perception you are trained with in a mystery school,
creates an illusion of unity.
In metaphysics you are taught to see that everything is connected.
This is no different from dualism, it is not real, but it is a new way
of perception in the sense that you are encouraged to think of the apparently
invisible connection between all phenomena.
That an 'apple' is not just an apple, but also a symbol that connects
to all other symbols in some form, and all these connections ultimately
become a single united symbol, often described as God.
But when you develop the celestial vision, you will see
that this is not true either.
That an apple or any other phenomenon (including your 'self') is both
inherently its own uniqueness and also a wholeness.
That is why the closest way to describe reality is not as 'dualism', nor
as 'oneness', nor as 'nothingness', but as 'not-twoness'.
In Sanskrit there is a word for this, Advaita.
It means literally 'not two'.
Individual and at the same time not divided.
This is a concept that cannot in fact be understood by
The celestial eye is not your normal eye, your celestial vision is not
It is a whole other sense.
We only call it an eye, we only call it seeing, because there is no other
way to describe it in language.
It can only be experienced.
Fear of the Non-Dual
Most forms of mysticism emphasize this point: that the first encounter
with the non-dual perception, the celestial eye, creates a sense of terror
in the beholder.
That terror is the sound of your ego cracking apart.
The ego is a structure completely dependent upon duality, on dividing
If the ego doesn't have an 'other' to define itself in comparison to,
it cannot exist.
It is revealed for an illusion.
God cannot be defined as anything but the non-dual.
God is love, the mystics have said. And love is union.
When you unite opposites and, step by step, eliminate dualities, you approach
closer and closer to the divine.
It is said that God seeks you out.
This is true.
God is nature.
Duality is not a natural state, it is an illusory state.
Ultimately, the natural will triumph over the illusory.
This is what Buddha means when he says that ultimately all beings will
It is also what Krishna means when he says "I am Time, the destroyer of
God can be very aptly described as time.
As the inevitable, as a force that brings death.
Anyone who cannot achieve non-duality in life, will certainly see their
dualities dissolve in death.
This is why the Sufis say you must 'die before you die'.
Thus there is a twofold reason for the fear that will sometimes strike
meditators when they reach a level of non-duality.
First, because the closest thing their mind can relate the experience
to is death.
Second, because in fact it is death, as far as the ego is concerned.
But God is also love.
If you accept that non-dual experience, if you welcome it rather than
struggle, you will find union.
Know that the fear is your ego.
Know that it is not you.
Accept your experience.
Be very open,
The Longing for God
The other side of awe from the experience of the divine is the longing
Just as we fear the non-dual experience, all human beings also desire
In fact, it is the only true desire.
It is the only true satisfaction.
Lusts for power, sex, possessions, knowledge and even love are only reflections
of this true desire, to be united.
This is what mystics call longing.
It is a knowledge deep within you that there is a hole, an emptiness that
must be filled.
And some of the most powerful meditation can come from this.
In reality, you cannot express the non-dual state through austerities,
techniques, knowledge or any other form.
Only through devotion, which is how we express this longing.
The great mystical poets write of this longing for God, also as a longing
for the Beloved.
It is also the longing of the Beloved for you.
Life wants to unite with you, God wants you to unite with him.
Allow yourself to experience your longing, your devotion to God, the
Guru, and life.
Let it be a positive expression, and it has the power to transform you.
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