"God is that beautiful danger wherein the earth no longer needs to behave..." -John O'Donohue
Beyond the borders of the body, and the brain it houses, lies mystery. Our minds try to figure it out. But the only answer is to yield to a "knowing" beyond analysis.
Unless we are attentive our body will block spiritual experience. As we glimpse the edges of "the beyond" the body constantly calls us back to its demands and our mind struggles to understand.
Analytical thinking obstructs spiritual experience. The best our mind can do is to attend to signals, to watch where the heart is pointing.
What do the mystics and geniuses see? Why do we care?
I listen to Mozart, Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, Elgar and Paul McCartney because I believe they, in their clearest moments, hear a music so deep within them that it comes from beyond the body's boundaries.
When Joni Mitchell sings her slow jazz version of "Both Sides Now" she is singing from beyond herself. She allows her being to be the instrument of Beauty.
To hear her, we must do the same.
When I listen to famed storyteller Minton Sparks (left) perform I hear music that comes from beyond her body and yet through it. Her stories are songs. Her songs are stories that travel through her heart and into ours.
Renoir saw it, Rodin felt it, basketball star Bill Russell touched it.
Meryl Streep, Anthony Hopkins and Nicole Kidman have all known it.
Mother Theresa, Martin Luther King, Clara Barton and Florence Nightingale appreciated it and lived it. That is why we experience them as otherworldly - as saints.
They know that, as Antoine de St. Exupery's fox says in The Little Prince: "It is only with the heart that one can see clearly. What is essential is invisible to the eye."
Geniuses of this earth appreciate that knowing God means knowing an energy "wherein the earth no longer needs to behave."
You know that what matters flows through our bodies only if we open to the spirit. Real relationships, including love's embraces and caregiver's sacred encounters, tell us this: Our truest sensuality dances with the spirit in the mansion of Love .
The reverse is also true. Spiritual engagement weaves our senses together
If you have heard Love in your darkest nights, or if you have held the heart of someone else in their darkest hours, you have seen beyond the body. You have transcended your senses.
Until we die, the earth will always pull us back to her. That is why it is so important to know earth's unique glory. When we meet her on her most intimate terms, we find earth's version of paradise - Love.
Photo of Minton Sparks - Submitted