1. Our personalized Heavens. A number of people imagine that in Heaven they will continue the best moments of their lives, without the embarrassing conditions of illness, pain or death. However, Heaven is neither ’more’ nor ’better’ than our best moments. On the contrary: Heaven is astonishingly DIFFERENT.
"the kingdom of God is within you." (Luke 17:21)
2. The inner dimensions of growth. The inner dimensions of growth leading us to Fulfillment are folded in the inner layers of our spirit. How can we unfold them?
A.) We should learn to say "no". Self-limitation does not make us poorer but richer. (If You are curious about the explanation please read the post.)
B.) For discovering the inner dimensions of our spirit, we have to break the shells of our own egos that keep us in the spirit's surface layers. Christ’s virtues: poverty, purity and humility are able to tear us out from the captivity of our own egos.
C.) Achieving all these we will be able to empty ourselves. With this we become able to find our Path, where we will experience unimaginably new dimensions of joy.
This inner joy is not only ours but it can be shared with all other people. By sharing it, joy does not decrease. On the contrary: it increases.
On this specific, personal Path to Fulfillment I wish the Reader a very Happy New Year!
xxx xxx xx xxxxxx,
1. Our personalized Heavens
A number of people imagine that in Heaven they will continue the best moments of their lives, without the embarrassing conditions of illness, pain or death. So the trendy answer opening the year 2018 would be if I wrote a detailed analysis about what the most important factors preventing the increase of Earth’s wellbeing are, and how these obstacles could be staved off. But except for the next paragraph, I will not do this at all. Why? Because I have a radically different idea of Heaven, which I wish to share with the Reader.
Factors preventing the increase of Earth’s wellbeing are summarized by the United Nations 17 sustainable development goals quite well. Just to mention a few: overpopulation of our planet and in connection with this an increasing lack of food and freshwater, energy problems, pollution and the growing public unrest caused by the more and more unequal distribution of goods all need urgent and comprehensive actions. Beyond the UN’s 17 points, the incredible growth of the amount and transmission speed of information has made it increasingly evident that the human brain’s information processing capacity is an extremely tight bottleneck. (The 'human CPU', our working memory is able to process only a very few, 5 to 10 pieces of information at the same time.) Aging and replacement of an increasing number of traditional professions with robots make it more and more urgent to invent new ways of spending time. If I tried to list the solutions I would almost come to list Elon Musk’s companies founded in recent years.
It is important to keep in mind that the imagination of mankind to visualize Good is amazingly narrow-minded. Good embodied in Heaven would be described by the words "again", "more" and "better" in most people’s mind. In a worse case we imagine Heaven as an infinite possession of "again", "more" and "better". In an even worse case grabbing of "more" and "even more" becomes our power controlling the whole environment in our self-centered, personalized Heaven.
"believing shall rejoice with joy unspeakable and glorified;
Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls."
(1 Peter 1:8-9)
"I would not give one moment of heaven
for all the joy and riches of the world,
even if it lasted for thousands and thousands of years."
Heaven is neither "more" nor "better" than the best moments of our lives. Heaven is astonishingly DIFFERENT. Let me quote two examples to show how an incredibly lot of different kinds of Good could exist which are unthinkably more intensive than our wildest dreams.
My first example is about two twins in the womb (after A. J. Christian’s book "Sound of Totality"). Twins became conceived in the womb of a mother. Weeks passed by and the fetuses were growing. As they were becoming bigger, their intellects started to develop, too. One of them said to the other with satisfaction: What a great thing it is that we were conceived, isn’t it? What miraculous it is that we are alive, isn’t it? Twins started to know their world step by step. When they discovered the naval cord that linked them to their mother and supplied them with nourishment, they were almost singing of joy: How great is our mother’s love that she shares her life with us! Weeks and months have passed by. Once they noticed that an incredibly large change is about to happen in their lives. What does this mean? one of them asked. It means answered the other that our existence in this world has come to its end. – But I do not want to leave this place at all! replied the first one. I want to stay here forever! – We have no choice answered the wiser one. But maybe there is life after birth, too! – How could there be? asked the first one skeptically. If our naval cord breaks away, how could we live without it? And anyway: others have already left the womb before us and no-one have come back to tell there was life after birth. No: birth is the end! The more he was thinking the more serious concerns he had. Once he said to the other: If conception ends with birth, what is the meaning of life in the womb? It is completely meaningless. It is also possible that our mother does not exist. – No, she must exist! objected the other. How could we get here at all if she were not exist? And how could we survive until now? – Have you ever seen our mother? asked the sceptic one. Even it is not excluded that she is fictitious. We have made her up for ourselves so we can better understand our lives and existence. So their last days spent in the womb were full of un-answered questions and great fear. At last the moment of birth has arrived. When the twins left the womb they opened their eyes and shouted. What they could see exceeded even their wildest dreams. Special thanks to my friend, Peter Bajor for this story. Peter's lecture "How does Heaven look like?" was very inspirational in the thinking process of this post.
protein + disaster = Love
My second example is that of a protein. Let’s imagine a protein in a teenager’s neuron. One early morning the neighbors of this protein were kicking it so hard which have never been experienced before. There was a growing disaster through all the morning. By noon all amino acids of the protein were hurt badly. THE worse day in all its life. Had this protein any idea that the teenager was in love, he was preparing for his first date and at noon he was given the unforgettable first kiss? Contemplating on this example deeply, are we still hundred percent sure that our individual complaints could not be a tiny contribution to the Good coming to existence at a much higher level? Can be really sure of that?
2. The inner dimensions of growth
The above examples show that by far not only the obstacles of growth have to be staved off but new dimensions of growth have to be found, too. Where these new dimensions should be looked for? It is worth deeply contemplating about the words of Jesus: "The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say: Behold here, or behold there. For lo, the kingdom of God is within you." (Luke 17:20-21) The inner dimensions of growth are folded in the inner layers of our spirit. The spirit contains a lot of immensely deeper and deeper layers, whose unfolding brings us closer and closer to Totality.
How can we get closer to the new, inner dimensions of our spirit?
Three pieces of advice will follow.
A. We should learn to say "no". We do not miss anything important if we do not participate in everything that at first we think is important for us. Just the contrary: if we make a good selection of events we participate in we can experience a much more intensive joy. Self-limitation in many situations does not make us poorer but richer, since it deepens the content we chose to keep. In addition, if we think about the common Good that can be achieved as a result of our self-limitation and that will please us, too later, then the benefits of self-limitation increase further at our own individual levels, too.
"With our full attention
we have to get immersed in what we do
in that very moment.
If we walk, we should walk.
If we pray, we should pray.
If we look at something, we should look at it.
If we eat, we should eat.
This is the secret of full, intensive and rich life."
(quotation of Carthusian monks)
B. For discovering the inner dimensions of our spirit, we have to break out from our own egos that tie us to the spirit's surface layers. Our egos struggle with the questions of "What and whom do I possess?", "In what am I better than others?", "What are others thinking about me?" (and all the like) for a lifetime. These questions are traps because they enable only quantitative growth and close our soul to our ego even better. In most cases our egos make us play zero-sum games when we steal our own wellbeing from others. Christ’s virtues: humility, purity and poorness are able to tear us out from the captivity of our own egos. The starting step, the virtue of humility diminishes our egos themselves and by this it enables us to start our journey towards Totality. The second step, the virtue of purity shows us the way towards Totality by making it the most important aim of our lives and gradually purifying us from the everyday impurities of the world. The final step, the virtue of poorness brings Totality to fulfill our lives and inserting us to the love-stream of Totality gives us the most intensive love, agape. (To the virtues of humility, purity and poorness as states of life, I wrote separate posts avaliable at the links above, so, I invite the Reader to read them there.)
C. Finally: by saying "no" and diminishing our egos we will be able to empty ourselves (not only for the time of meditation but for long or even: permanently). What is this good for? For the answer let me quote my friend, Csongor Cserép, who triggered my spiritual engrossment by driving my attention to St. Teresa of Ávila's book "The Interior Castle" two years ago. "I, who aspire for comprehension, know that only the Creator can accomplish comprehension. Therefore, I empty myself and ask Him, that by connecting the Creation’s Gate and myself, lead me to the state before Creation, the state of uncreated Silence, where there are neither "me" nor "you" any more but there is only the ONE." Silence before Creation is a state that opens Totality and the immense love of our Father for us. With this we become able to find our Path where unimaginably new dimensions of joy will be experienced. Hallelujah! Amen.
3. Closing remarks
Four crucially important comments to conclude this post.
A. I did not intend to suggest that we should discover the deeper layers of our spirit instead of making efforts to solve the Earth’s present problems.
B. I particularly distance myself from the cynical approach which considers Christ’s virtues of purity, poverty and humility as an ’ideology’ helping prevent overpopulation and pacify the crowds.
C. I intended to suggest that the inner dimensions of our spirit reveal a gradually unfolding, extremely intensive source of joy. This inner joy does not remain only ours. It explodes and reaches many others. By sharing it, the inner joy does not decrease. On the contrary: it increases. Experiencing this common joy we can reach Fulfillment that we are not able even to imagine in our wildest dreams.
D.) Last, I did not want to state that Fulfillment has the only Path described here. Just inversely: Fulfillment may be achieved in miraculously many ways. Virtues of poverty, purity and humility are that important, since they open the soul to discover these million ways reaching Fulfillment. In conclusion, the Path leading to Heaven has many-many forms. However, Heaven itself is not personalized at all. Heaven is beautiful just because it is a common existence in Fulfillment.
On the specific, personal Path to Fulfillment
I wish the Reader a very Happy New Year!
Postscript: I would like to apologize that my native language is not English. I am especially not familiar with English phrases concerning spiritual life. I would like to ask all Readers whose native language is English to send any corrections to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you very much for your help (and patience) in advance! (I hope as time passes there will be fewer and fewer mistakes in the text.)