Mystics on the Wonder of our Universe, Part II

We are calling on mystics of old to sit with us as we drink in the first stars and first galaxies arriving from our universe over 13.8 billions years ago.  We are calling on them for their response.

The Webb Space Telescope sends back new images and discoveries, 7/25/2022. Video by The Space Wind; images by NASA – European Space Agency (ESA) – SpaceX – Wikipedia.

The universe is the primary revelation of the divine, the primary scripture, the primary locus of divine-human communion. (Thomas Berry)

Humanity participates by nature in all cosmic events, and is inwardly as well as outwardly interwoven with them. (Richard Wilhelm on the Chinese concept of Tao)

Ecstatic love is an ocean, and the Milky Way is a flake of foam floating on it. (Rumi)

By the word of the Lord his works come into being.
As the shining sun looks on all things,
so the work of the Lord is full of his glory.  (Sir.  42: 15f)

In music, in the sea, in a flower, in a leaf, in an act of kindness….I see what people call God in all these things.  (Pablo Casals)

“Mountain Valley at Sunset” Photo by Sonja Wilkinson on Unsplash

In the beginning was the word.
The word was with God
and the word was God….
And the word became flesh
And dwelt among us.  (Jn 1:1,14)

My Beloved is the mountains,
And lonely wooded valleys,
Strange islands,
And resounding rivers,
The whistling of love-stirring breezes,
The tranquil night
At the time of rising dawn,
Silent music,
Sounding solitude,
The supper that refreshes and deepens love.  (John of the Cross)

God is love and anyone who lives in love lives in God and God in her.  (1 Jn 4:16)

God created all things in such a way that they are not outside himself, as ignorant people falsely imagine.  Rather, all creatures flow outward, but nonetheless remain within God. (Meister Eckhart)

The day of my spiritual awakening was the day I saw—and knew I saw—all things in God and God in all things.  (Mechtild of Magdeburg)

We are in God and God whom we do not see is in us.  (Julian of Norwich)

“I am the Vine.” Pottery plaque by M.C. Richards, from the Stations of the Cosmic Christ Meditation Cards.

Make your home in me, as I make mine in you,
I am the vine, you are the branches.
Whoever remains in me, with me in him,
bears plentiful fruit.  Fruit that remains.  (Jn 15: 4f)

For Gandhi, to become divine is to become attuned in thought, feeling and act to the whole of creation….Dharma or  morality cannot be ultimately divorced from rta or cosmic order.  (Raghavan Iyer)

The most important function of art and science is to awaken the cosmic religious feeling and keep it alive.  (Albert Einstein)

Adapted from Matthew Fox, Original Blessing, pp. 35f., 88f., 66f.

Also see Matthew Fox and Bishop Marc Andrus, Stations of the Cosmic Christ and Stations of the Cosmic Christ Meditation Cards.

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

Banner Image: In the deepest and sharpest infrared image of the universe so far, the Webb Telescope shows galaxy cluster SMACS 0723 as it appeared 4.6 billion years ago, with many more galaxies in front of and behind it. Image credit: NASA, ESA, CSA, and STScI.

Queries for Contemplation

Which teachings here most speak to you at this special moment in human and planetary and cosmic awareness?

Recommended Reading

Stations of the Cosmic Christ
By Matthew Fox and Bishop Marc Andrus.

This is a book of meditations on the Cosmic Christ, accompanying the images of 16 wonderful clay tablets by Javier Ullrrich Lemus and M.C. Richards. Together, these images and meditations go far beyond the traditional Stations of the Cross to inspire a spirit awakening and understanding of the cosmic Christ Consciousness, Buddha consciousness, and consciousness of the image of God in all beings, so needed in our times.
“A divinely inspired book that must be read by every human being devoted to spiritual and global survival. It is cosmically brilliant.” — Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit

Stations of the Cosmic Christ Meditation Cards and Guide Booklet

Beautiful full-color cards from Stations of the Cosmic Christ to aid in your meditations on the Cosmic Christ, featuring the images of 16 wonderful clay tablets by Javier Ullrrich Lemus and M.C. Richards. Step beyond the traditional Stations of the Cross and experience a spirit awakening and understanding of the cosmic Christ Consciousness, Buddha consciousness, and consciousness of the image of God in all beings, so needed in our times. Includes an instruction booklet containing suggestions on how to use the cards.

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

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8 thoughts on “Mystics on the Wonder of our Universe, Part II”

  1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
    Richard Reich-Kuykendall

    Matthew, Your Query for Contemplation today is a pleasure, to contemplate and then write about. You ask us: “Which teachings here most speak to you at this special moment in human and planetary and cosmic awareness?” To tell you the truth, everyone was so beautiful and moving. I could have written on all of them but I have selected four to write something brief about. The first is, Rumi’s passionate and expressive line which goes like this: “Ecstatic love is an ocean, and the Milky Way is a flake of foam floating on it.” Not only does he use words to say something about our galaxy, the Milky Way–he is an artist, who paints and images that we see in our minds and feel in our soul, because of the very words he chooses. The next quote I use as my defining words for panentheism. They are the words of Mechtild of Magdeburg, which say: “The day of my spiritual awakening was the day I saw—and knew I saw—all things in God and God in all things.” I think that says it all in about the simplest way possible. Next, I feel that the quotation by St. John of the Cross paints one of the most beautiful pictures of nature I have ever heard. It is longer, so I will refer the reader to your meditation above. Finally, the last quotation I have selected (one of the four that spoke to me the most) was written by Thomas Berry, and he writes: “The universe is the primary revelation of the divine, the primary scripture, the primary locus of divine-human communion.” This is our primary scripture, in our time in history. For thousands of years people have only had the scriptures to give them answers to questions like: “Where did we come from” and “Why are we here”–and now nature itself, the universe itself is speaking to us–unequivocally. thank you for this, Matthew!

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      Holy Writ has always pointed to the glories of God in the created order, Richard. It praises and magnifies them abundantly, especially in Psalms. Study it it sometime, before you judge it in wild and hasty ways. Though inspiring, however, Scripture only declares nature as a witness, so we are “without excuse” that God exists. That is, nature as evidence for God, the latter being the PRIMARY cause of its soothing sounds, cleansing fragrances, and colorfully majestic displays. While God is in the effects to be enjoyed in themselves, s-he is NOT the literal effects themselves, but is only seen IN them as material evidence that s-he exists, bearing divine images (imago dei), likenesses, and vestiges (vestigia dei) of same everywhere. A person’s personal effects/affects, no matter how striking a resemblance they are to said person (the original) are not the McCoy, not the person themselves. Say, as your clothes or paintings, Richard, may be distinctly and identifiably yours, yet they aren’t YOU. It follows, then, that effects are secondary, not primary, in accordance with the written Word. Only direct relationship is, with an assist from creation. To see otherwise is to be a starry-eyed spiritual autograph (effects) seeker. As effects, we’re not to worship them, glorify or overly praise them. Enjoy yes, but they’re just mirrors. It would be silly, Richard, to worship, or even dawdle for weeks on end over your own, or another’s image reflected in a mirror, wouldn’t it? Maybe even, if excessive, via a telescope, microscope, periscope, spectroscope, or any other “scope” to lay what already lies before you, as evidence, in reams of naked-eye abundance. Back to basics, the created order is beautiful, and God in it, but it’s only a witness bearing testimony. It’s not our salvation or the one responsible for directly mediating same. The ONLY witness who can, the Christ, seen in creation once-removed for sure, but only experienced firsthand as awakened in a living soul.

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    The teachings here that most speak to me are those of Einstein, Thomas Berry and Mechtild. Einstein, because he was a deist, possessing a once-removed sense of the divine via the creation, not a personal one. Although the physics genius spoke about art and the cosmos as stirring “a religious feeling,” feeling doesn’t necessarily imply, as in the case of himself and others, that such did or will result in a personal spiritual awakening, say, as in the case of the spiritually regenerated and/or mystics. It didn’t for him, and doesn’t for most, or he would have attested to it, and so remained a deist throughout. Unlike Einstein, Mechtild bore witness to the notion that “seeing God in all things and all things in God,” was a byproduct of her spiritual awakening, implying she (and others) did not and cannot have spiritual sight until then, and only AFTER that event. Thomas Berry, because he spoke of natural revelation as primary, instead of being secondary, as special revelation (Scripture) is primary in awakening souls fully in God. Otherwise, it wouldn’t have been spoken of as such by Jesus. All the above is not so much theological hair-splitting, as it is “rightfully dividing the Word of Truth” (Heb. 4:12) as revealed in the apostle’s doctrine. There may be one river with many religious wells to drink from, but there is only one “head of all principalities and powers” in the spiritual world.

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    The mystics that speak to me the most are those who in a variety of languages, depending on their cultures and different times in human history including the present, speak about their experiences (personal spiritual transformations) of God’s Loving~Wisdom~Creative Spirit and Living Presence within All ongoing co-Creation~Evolution, especially with-in the Consciousness of our unique and diverse evolving eternal souls… the Loving Diverse Oneness of our Beloved Cosmic Christ Consciousness….

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    EXACTLY what I would have liked to say Richard about today’s reflection, all superb , but the beauty of today’s lifts one to Another Place. Reminds me of age 4 and wartime ,and lying in a meadow out of sight and sound of house , grounded by the dear earth, gazing at the space of sky and beauteous clouds, feeling the breath of air, and communing with my friends the grasshoppers. Not just that ,but the silence, yet the Harmony of sound,from the grasses ,the trees,their leaves singing , my feathered friends ,and the happy chirping of the grasshoppers loving me,and I them– ALL WAS ONE. All creation ,All one to be adored and looked through.
    This drop in the ocean Me,now age 83 , still knows we ALL ARE ONE , cultures, faiths or none .ALL unutterably loved.
    Love your books Matthew ,and daily meditations, give them,loan them .Thank you.
    Am quite certain my dear friend Daniel O ‘Leary ( friend of all) is cheering from his new sphere!!! Brenda Pike.

  5. Carol Kilby

    Thank you, Matthew. Each quote is redeeming. A question: could you write out the word you use from ancient language for kingdom. ThT can be understood as creation, please? (I must have been sleeping during that class) carol Kilby

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    Jeanette Metler

    What speaks to me most within today’s teachings, from the writings of the mystics… are the revelatory words of St. John of the Cross… which I am experientially emersing myself in the spiritual reality of. What comes to my mind, are some words from a Joni Mitchell song… “O Canada, you taste like holy wine… oh, I could drink a case of you, darlin.”

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