I was scanning the history of the early Christians
this morning and these words jumped out
“I am the first and the last.
I am the honoured one and the scorned one.
I am the whore and the holy one.
I am the wife and the virgin.
I am the mother and the daughter…
I am the barren one
and many are her sons.”
(The Thunder, Perfect Mind)
Not only are these words strange because
God is speaking as a woman,
these words are odd also because
most of the statements are stating
contradictions, paradox… and are speaking also
from a perspective that somehow unifies
I am a mystic, not so much a scholar.
The scholarly details do not matter to me
so much – it is the being beneath the words,
the hints of a conscious continuity
deeper than the either of the
This being which transcends individuals,
which is omnipresent beneath the opposites
expressed in this poem –
this “being” that is beneath and beyond –
this is what a mystic focuses on…
the deeper being, the being that is the
continuity of all things…
This mind within and
without all things: this knowing the inner
and the outer, the holy and the abomination,
the beauty and ugliness, opposites emanating from the
two sides of the same coin.
Paradoxical problems, contradictions at the deepest level,
these are useful because
these are the mind-breakers, the “mindshocks”
that smash the unbending concepts of the
This is what the mystic quest is all
about – and, to be honest – the mystic quest
and the Grail quest are
one and the same thing, so far as I am
concerned. Except the
mystic quest does not need to have
any Christian trappings.
The mystic must confront
the sacred, nevertheless; and the mystic
must also confront the profane.
Sometimes, and this can be confusing,
the sacred and the profane are both
embodied in the same vessel – such as
I think of her as I read this poem,
as it is said, in the Gospel of Phillip,
she was most beloved of the saviour.
The poem continues:
“I am the solace of my labour pains.
I am the bride and the bridegroom,
and it is my husband who begot me.
I am the mother of my father
and the sister of my husband,
and he is my offspring.
I am the slave of him who prepared me.
I am the ruler of my offspring.
But he is the one who begot me before the time
on a birthday.
And he is my offspring in due time
and my power is from him.
I am the staff of his power in his youth,
and he is the rod of my old age.
And whatever he wills happens to me.
I am the silence that is incomprehensible…
I am the utterance of my name.
These words, on the surface,
make no sense at all! But don’t be discouraged.
Don’t stop at the first gate to the temple.
The poem is a lot longer than than the verses I
quoted. I meant to print out only a few lines,
but the beauty and the flow and the magic of it
“I am shameless; I am ashamed.”
“Do not be arrogant to me when I am cast out upon
You will find me in those who are to come.
Do not look upon me on the dung-heap
nor go and leave me cast out,
and you will find me in the kingdoms.”
These last few lines remind me very
much of the words of Christ:
“Whoever is cruel and arrogant to the least of these”..
these poor, ragged outcasts…
“WHOEVER DOES IT TO THE LEAST OF THESE
DOES IT TO ME.”
Once it is known that the godhead
can be found in every and all aspects of life, and
in all places however foul and lowly… that
the person there might also be the great king…
…perhaps we will not be so cruel to others
when we realize we are being cruel to God
as well.The whole Circle
turns round the MInd at the mandala’s
I got swept away by the poetry of the words…
It is in the very contradictions of this poem
that the mystic truth resides.
Don’t bother trying to approach a mystic
reality with your intellectual mind, you’ll
have no luck at all. No, your mind must
penetrate through the contradictions…
in order to find the core, the source
of the fountain.
If you are trying to catch a fish
in a stream, don’t use a bowl.
“Why, you who hate me, do you love me
and hate those who love me?”
You can feel the pain in these words…
coming from a person who has known what
it is like to be an outcast… coming from the
suffering, the poor and the ragged…
coming from the tender mercy in this
divine woman’s heart.