By Jan F. Brouwer
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Extra info for Essays on Spirituality
In the depth of their soul they find a stillness that generates these peak experiences, the very feelings you experienced when you fell in love or when you won your victory. This stillness is for them a source of great bliss. Everyone knows what mysticism is like, because everyone has had peak experiences. But most people never seem to be able to turn these experiences into a permanent state of being, for the reason that they are easily distracted by what comes into their senses from the outside world and so arouses their will.
For you shall have to pass from soul to Emptiness. Please observe: the soul also has its pains. The human love of relationships has its flaws. People come and go. Friends depart, either temporarily or for good. If you are not willing to make friends with your final Emptiness then life will have some great disappointments for you in store. You will become attached to the love of your friends or to the enjoyments of the arts. - you will be left broken and forlorn. You will lament your life and your fate.
By way of the senses we catch a glimpse of a more perfect world beyond. Beauty also effects our feelings and insights in a transformative way. After a profound aesthetic experience we are not the same anymore. In this confrontation with beauty our perspective of the world, even our very self, is altered. These two aspects of the aesthetic experience, the unraveling of the spiritual dimension of life, together with its transformation of our ordinary consciousness to a higher level, are closely linked and mutually affect each other.