By Patricia Albere

Having worked intimately with thousands of people, it is vividly clear to me that each person is profoundly unique and distinctly different in how spiritual awakening and expression arise for that particular person.

Sometimes, we can (and do) waste enormous amounts of time trying to awaken in a path that may be ancient and powerful but innately has nothing to do with who we are and how we are designed. Worse, we can judge ourselves for not being surrendered enough, having enough will and commitment, and feeling a failure when, in fact, it’s just not the right match for us. It’s not so different from being in the wrong relationship, where no effort and good intentions can create the right harmony and chemistry to allow love to flourish.

As we more accurately understand and align ourselves to our particularities, we discover how to give ourselves fully to a path that will give us direct access to our full potential.

It’s a blessing to be alive in an era where we are exposed to a plethora of techniques, teachers, and spiritual paths. As we try things out, practice, and expose ourselves to various influences, it’s important to sense what is worth your full commitment and energy. You should look at what resonates and gives you real results and traction and what doesn’t.

Are You A Mystic? Where a philosopher guesses & argues, the mystic lives & looks & speaks the disconcerting language of first-hand experience.

Evelyn Underhill published her classic book, Mysticism: The Nature and Development of Spiritual Consciousness, in 1911.

She makes some interesting distinctions between magic, mysticism, philosophy, and science. The purpose of this blog is to deepen the distinction of what a mystic is. I will contrast some of the elements of magic (a curious word for something you will recognize) and leave philosophy and science to those with more knowledge in those domains.

I want to share this with you to illuminate a more precise resonance not only with your truth (for those of you who are mystics) but also with what may lie deeper that is calling many of us together.

Mystics peer into deeper realities that lie hidden beneath our ordinary experience. They passionately long to be close to something they can’t explain, an ultimate reality, the Divine Beloved. No words capture this elusive but compelling ONE that is all-consuming.

Magic (using Underhill’s definition) is the desire to acquire knowledge of the phenomenal world. Those oriented in this way (magicians) want access to the deeper realities so that the knowledge can be used for different purposes in the world. Many thought leaders focus this way, using supernatural abilities for healing or worldly pursuits of abundance, love, and power. Magic involves accessing the deeper spiritual laws and understanding other planes of existence to GET something. It has a STRATEGIC orientation.

Mysticism involves surrendering, wanting to GIVE yourself so wholly that you dissolve into union with the Divine. Mystics give everything. They passionately dissolve themselves into the Beloved, with their only hope to be close. Mysticism is the science of ultimate union with the Absolute. It’s practical and not theoretical. It’s based on love, surrender, and supreme perception.

Magic uses will and intellect to aggressively obtain what can be used to extend one’s field of consciousness and knowledge. It is self-seeking transcendentalism. It wants to transcend all limitations and get something beyond what it already has for itself or others. It is seeking the nature of Reality for its purposes or the world. Vulnerability, passion, and love are not necessary for magic. The techniques, spiritual laws, and accomplishments of magic are vast, can be useful, and are readily available to us everywhere these days. The strategies and techniques have helped individuals and the world create the lives they want, etc., but seeing the difference and finding what resonates for yourself is essential. Magic is strategic. Mysticism is receptive and surrendered.

The mystic rides the edge of what is unfolding and becomes skillful at staying right where the unknown is emerging. Magic is about discovering something, breaking it down, and using it – so one visits the realm beyond and then leaves to use what has been discovered. A mystic wants to live in never-ending contact with Reality. As a mystic dissolves and the true union is achieved, the mystic is used powerfully in the world to bring the Divine into existence. Still, it is being used by and a vehicle for, rather than being determined by, the individual’s ideas and plans.

There are 4 qualities of mystical experience that William James wrote about in his book, The Varieties of Religious Experience. He was a friend and contemporary of Evelyn Underhill.

Ineffable: In the dictionary, ineffable is defined as “too great or extreme to be expressed or described in words, too sacred to be uttered.” Its synonyms include unspeakable, inexpressible, and nameless.

A mystic’s focus is remaining close to the experience, open, available, and intimate. When they express themselves, it arises more as a kind of poetry that’s meaning is felt beyond the words. The influence is felt through the transmission of feeling and consciousness. Contrast that with the necessary exactness of philosophy and science or the spiritual laws, practices, and rituals of magic (as we use it in this discussion).

Noetic: Noesis is the soul’s capacity to be aware of itself not only as pure awareness and not only as the content of experience but to be aware directly of forms arising in the field of consciousness.” – A.H. Almaas

The quality of a Noetic experience is one of certainty and direct knowing, not something learned from the outside. Famous mystics would often express that their experiences were, in fact, a contradiction to what they had expected or believed.

Unpredictable & Uncontrollable: One can only surrender, be open, vulnerable, willing to risk anything and be humble. Of course, practice and exerting effort is within our control. We can become ready and prepare ourselves to be accident-prone in this domain. But, like all genuinely precious aspects of our human experience (like falling in love, cosmic orgasms, pure creativity, birth, and revelation), it is, in the end, a gift, pure grace. We can’t even claim to deserve the blessing.

Magic is about having control, reliable steps and techniques, and predictability as an important part of its fascination.

So then…… are you a mystic?

In my work with the Evolutionary Collective, we have discovered a kind of collective mysticism or WE-Mysticism. The highest wave of evolutionary potential invites humanity towards a radically new type of human existence whereby Divine Oneness is the reality we can live from together.

I will discuss these revelations in a talk titled ARE YOU A MYSTIC? WE-Mysticism and the Unitive Reality of the Future.

Saturday, July 22nd
9:30 am PT / 12:30 pm ET – 6:30 pm CET
1-hour event

Mystics never fit into the world. They have always been alone, out of step with most of the world. I need more time to fully present how those who may be more mystical can live “in the world, but not of it” together. WE-Mysticism is making it possible to resolve the irreconcilable gaps we have between our personal healing, living in a world that is in chaos, and wanting to make a difference. I hope you’ll join us to continue this conversation live (and get a link to the recording later).

In Unity,