Rank praises our mystical one-ing experiences or the experience of union with thecosmos as beingone of the suspension of time—“present, past and future are dissolved” at that moment, he observes. 

The third eye, the portal of creativity and intuition. Photo by Mr TT on Unsplash.

His essay on “Nature and Spirit,” constitutes the very last page of his book, Psychology and the Soul, thus forming a kind of culminating crescendo to his study of the soul and its history.  In it he says this: “In the psychic realm, the only reality is the Now. (italics his)  Rank criticizes Freud for dwelling in the past for “in so doing, he neglects the truly psychic element—the present, active self, and its corresponding Now.”

Thus for Rank the creative process, the choice to give birth that is the basis of all ethics, happens only in the now.  Creativity is not of the past; therefore our healing will not come from knowledge of the past but from current choices, choices made by the “present, active self, and its corresponding Now.” 

Art piece entitled, “Ex Nihilo” (Out of Nothing) by Richard Reich -Kuykendall who is an Author, Artist, and graduate of Matthew Fox’s University of Creation Spirituality.

Rank applies his philosophy of the Now and practices what he preaches (or is he preaching what he practices?) when he tells us that his “dynamic therapy” is based first and foremost on an emphasis that shifts “from the past to the present, in which all emotional experience takes place.”  The Eternal Now is reenacted in the healing paradigm Rank presents.  The emphasis on the Now dictates a trust of what is really going on.  This sounds very zen-like.

Meister Eckhart talks similarly when he says that “God is creating everything of the past and everything of the present and everything of the future in the depths of your soul now.”  Eckhart develops the Now consciousness when he writes: 

The history of nature from the Big Bang to the present day, shown graphically in a spiral with notable events annotated. Every billion years (Ga) is represented by 90 degrees of rotation of the spiral. Image by Pablo Carlos Budassi with the help of the evolutionary biology researcher Professor Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther, on Wikimedia Commons

God is in this power as in the eternal now.  Were the spirit at every moment united with God in this power, people could never grow old…There everything is present and new, everything which is there.  And there you have in a present vision everything which ever happened or ever will happen…everything is present and in this ever-present vision I possess everything.

Another creation mystic, the historical Jesus, also speaks of the importance of the Now when he says: “The kingdom and queendom of God is among you.” 

It is from these experiences of the eternal now that our memories are stamped forever with what we truly cherish.  Therefore it is from these glimpses of a restoration of a primal unity (Eckhart talks about our return to our “unborn self”) that our truest values emerge.  Without honoring these Now experiences, we do not share values in common.  We have no shared ethic.

Adapted from Matthew Fox, Meditations with Meister Eckhart, pp. 24f. 

 And also Matthew Fox, Passion For Creation: The Earth-Honoring Spirituality of Meister Eckhart, pp. 110-113.

To read a transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.

Banner image: Rainbow spiral. The spiral is an ancient symbol representing birth/death, creativity/destruction, tension/release. Photo by Reid Zura on Unsplash.

Queries for Contemplation

Is it your experience that a creative consciousness is a Now consciousness?  How else to you enter into the deeper Now experience?  And it enter into you?

Recommended Reading

Meditations with Meister Eckhart: A Centering Book

A centering book by Matthew Fox. This book of simple but rich meditations exemplifies the deep yet playful creation-centered spirituality of Meister Eckhart, Meister Eckhart was a 13th-century Dominican preacher who was a mystic, prophet, feminist, activist, defender of the poor, and advocate of creation-centered spirituality, who was condemned shortly after he died.
“These quiet presentations of spirituality are remarkable for their immediacy and clarity.” –Publishers Weekly.  

Responses are welcomed. To add your comment, please click HERE or scroll to the bottom of the page.

Share this meditation


Daily Meditations with Matthew Fox is made possible through the generosity of donors. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation

Search Meditations





Receive our daily meditations

15 thoughts on “Rank and Eckart on Creativity and The Now ”

  1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
    Richard Reich-Kuykendall

    Matthew, I absolutely love all of your books, but my favorite book of all times is, MEDITATIONS WITH MEISTER ECKHART–I have read it countless times and am always amazed by Eckhart’s thought, and we have you to thank for bringing him to us!!! SO I RECOMMEND THAT EVERYONE WHO READS THIS GET THE TWO ECKHART BOOKS ABOVE!!!
    But NOW, for your “Queries for Contemplation” today:
    1. “Is it your experience that a creative consciousness is a Now consciousness?” Yes! Whether I am painting, writing or playing music it is all happening in the now–and more than in the now, also in a “Now Consciousness.”
    2. “How else do you enter into the deeper Now experience?” For me it is all three of the activities above plus, Lectio Divina, playing with my grandson, making love with my wife, and enjoying a nice visit with friends.
    3. “And it enter into you?” It seems that the same way I enter into the experience of the Now, is the same way it enters me.
    Otto Rank and Paul Tillich upheld the Now in their time, and then there was Ram Dass and his, “Be Here Now” and Now there is Eckhart Tolle. That being said, if you are reading this, reread the last paragraph of today’s meditation.

  2. Avatar
    Jeanette Metler

    In todays DM, Jesus’s words, “The Kingdom and Queendom of God is among you”, is where I am at right now… thanks to reading Richards book The Gospel of the Earth, that he referenced a few days ago to me… which I highly recommend reading.

    With regards to the query questions, being and living in the creativity of the now consciousness, for me means remaining open in heart, receptive in mind and surrendering in spirit… to the expansiveness of one’s soul in relationship with the all and the everything of creation and the ever present presence of God within this.

    How I enter into this deeper experience is through acceptance and learning to trust and integrate my own experience of being and living in the mystery of this spiritual reality. It’s personal, intimate and unique to each and everyone… yet also what unfolds, evolves and emerges from this is the unification of Oneness and Wholeness.

    How it enters into me… by grace… it’s a gift freely given to all, simply to be ackowledged, received and responded to in faith.

    1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
      Richard Reich-Kuykendall

      Jeanette, You said it!–the bottom line is: “How it enters into me… by grace… it’s a gift freely given to all, simply to be acknowledged, received and responded to in faith.”

  3. Avatar

    If Matthew reads this comment he may want to know more, as it touches on nature’s deepest secret as to the integration of spirit and matter, science and spirituality, and why the spiral motif is archetypal, chosen three times as the icon for today’s meditation. Elkhart also refers to it in his writings, using the term ‘vortex.’ Here goes: there’s a magnetic still point at the center of all things where eternity annexes itself to the field of space-time, and vice versa. Religion refers to it as spirit, or the “axis mundi” (world axis). Science calls it the ‘vacuum state,’ ‘zero-point field’ (ZPF), ‘field of fundamental forces and elementary particles,’ or the ‘Singularity.’ All of those names refer to the same thing — the Universal Christ, and explains how God can be everywhere and in all things, encompassing consciousness, energy and personhood (souls) spread out universally, innermost and outermost. All refer to the SAME unifying reality at the center of all things at all scales, micro to macro. It’s the nexus between eternity and time at the quantum level and beyond, and I can explain how in detail. Such is the geometric pattern by which the creator spin-signs his creation at the molecular level, starting with DNA (a double helix, or spiral). The secret? Created objects are spatially extended from a spinning vortex in the vacuum (ZPF or singularity or axis mundi or Spirit or Universal Christ) and appear like holograms in the space-time field. The space-time field is a simulation, a liminal interface which both reveals and conceals the Universal Christ hidden in all things. And Richard, listen up. Unless u are the designated webmaster, plz don’t correct me for not answering today’s questions. It answers them exceedingly. Matthew, contact me if u wish to know more. Otherwise it will my last entry on this website. Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but unto them it is not given.

    1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
      Richard Reich-Kuykendall

      AS a matter of fact Joe, I am the manager of the comment section. Not only that but I have both a M.Div degree and a D.Min. degree in Creation Spirituality from Matthew’s school and I have been a minister for over 30 years. Not only that, but I have taught physics and its relation to spirituality. I am aware of your book, and I can see by what you say that you are not interested in my comments on your comments. So I will refer you to a scientist friend of Matthew who he coauthored two books with him: THE PHYSICS OF ANGELS and NATURAL GRACE both co-written by Rupert Sheldrake, a former Research Fellow of the Royal Society and Director of Studies in biochemistry at Clare College, Cambridge University.

  4. Avatar

    I think I was addressing Matthew’s question about being in ‘the Now’ in my poem of a few decades ago. I wrote the poem for a Physics and Metaphysics class I was auditing at University of Toronto:

    What time is it?
    Is it then?
    Is it now?
    How are we in the
    here and now?
    Does it connect with
    then and there?
    Should we ask where or
    should we ask when?
    If we miss it
    will it come again?
    Is this the beginning or
    is this the end or
    do they just roll over
    again and again?
    “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth”
    It seems a natural split
    Implicate from explicate
    prevailing twin-opposites
    each mirroring each but not
    quite symmetric lest we wouldn’t
    see that we are involved
    in a Trinity
    a mere overlay on
    circularity which is really
    nothing anyway.

    “The Father is greater than I” he said

    So we don’t go in circles but
    ellipses instead and have so
    much less to keep in our heads…..

    1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
      Richard Reich-Kuykendall

      Gwen, Thank you for your poem. Its a beautiful way to respond to todays Queries for Contemplation!

  5. Avatar

    Too often, our minds are rehashing the past or anticipating the future; meanwhile the present is not attended to properly. What we do right here, right now becomes a memory of yesterday and impacts tomorrow.

  6. Avatar

    Very inspiring meditation. I think I enter the experience of Now by entering a state of wordlessness. Interacting with animals, being out in nature, painting, photographing, cleaning, walking, listening to music, working with my hands – those are all things that tune me in to a timeless cosmic present. I very much appreciate the gift of these DMs. I feel I’m learning a roadmap of global wisdom and spiritual understanding, and it’s so important to be aware of composition in living, just like in photography. I thank you, Matthew, with much warmth and respect.

  7. Avatar

    Besides having faith that there is a Sacred Mystical Now~Presence experienced and lived by the mystics and saints throughout human history in all mystical spiritual traditions, this Universal Loving Soul is within all of us. For my own human contemplative spiritual journey, I faithfully, prayerfully, patiently, and openly try to be consciously aware of this spiritual transformation by referring to this graceful sacred process as Being~Becoming Loving Compassionate Oneness with others and All of God’s ongoing Creation~Evolution….

Leave a Comment

To help moderate the volume of responses, the Comment field is limited to 1500 characters (roughly 300 words), with one comment per person per day.

Please keep your comments focused on the topic of the day's Meditation.

As always, we look forward to your comments!!
The Daily Meditation Team

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join us in meditation that supports your compassionate action

Receive Matthew Fox's Daily Meditation by subscribing below: