Here is an Amazon's presentation of a book from Joel Goldsmith entitled : "Realization of Oneness" :
"Thrust into the role of reluctant master, Goldsmith developed the mystical method of biblical interpretation described in his book Spiritual Interpretation of Scripture (1948). Using this method, Goldsmith would open his Bible randomly and meditate on whatever passage presented itself until enlightenment as to its true esoteric meaning came to him. The Infinite Way, according to his teaching, was not an institution but a mode of consciousness. Goldsmith experienced this mode of consciousness with increasing intensity over a period of many years. This processual experience began in November of 1928 when he first heard the inner voice that guided him throughout the development of his message and ministry. He always obeyed the prompting of this voice in decisions great and small and incubated its communications through a discipline of self-guided meditation. In the mid-1940s, Goldsmith's periods of meditation began to be the loci of a series of spiritual experiences he termed "initiations," some of which culminated in "ordination": conscious union with God. During a visit to Zürich, Switzerland in November of 1954, he reached the zenith of his mystical experience in a transfiguration-style event he called becoming "Christed." In content, the message of the Infinite Way is mystical monism, similar in its chief tenants to neo-platonism and Vedanta. All phenomena, both positive and negative, good and evil, are the transient material manifestations of the infinite, eternal, spiritual One. Every individual bears within him or herself an alienated fragment of the immortal One; this inner self naturally inclines toward return and reintegration with its true nature and source. The spiritual life of prayer and meditation leads gradually to a super-rational apprehension of unity with the ultimate, indestructible, and all-pervading One."
here is a quote from his Christed experience : "November 26, 1954 - 3 am - Hotel Baur-au-Lac in Zurich in Swisterland :
Finally, after the total desolation since November 16, after the last talk in Stockholm, It's come, raising me above the meaning of the flesh, out of all discord, Christed. A release of the little "I", a liberation of the personal sense of being and of one's cares and ills - Christed - there is no other word to use.
The color and appearance of my face have changed; the body took a more alert form, new vigor. Until 4:30 in the morning, I was in the spirit. After I slept until nine in the morning, and even I'm not the same man who lived yesterday. I was born from above. Thanks to you, all the power that is, thanks to you. My heart sighs to express gratitude adequately, but there is no way to do it. Thank you. Peace, peace, the world of the flesh, His peace."
How is it possible that someone experience so much spiritual stuff (if we consider what is said here is true) without even get "relational" with God, as it seems monism don't leads to ?
This man was a miracle healer too.
Some of these openings or awakenings that people have are produced purely by natural means. They are simply a product of the structure and potential of the human mind. So it is possible for a monist or even an atheist to have an opening of some sort.
What can be confusing is when they apply traditional Christian language to these experiences.
thanks for your participation Derek. So, at that point, how can we make a difference and be "sure" that what we experience is a genuine connection and action from God and not just a natural/mind process ?
I don’t think we can ever have certainty in these matters. What is grace, and what is simply an ordinary turn of events? It is the sort of thing you could talk over with your spiritual director, though.
Welcome, oztricker. What an interesting topic!
I'm not aware of Goldsmith's writings and so can't comment on more than what you've presented. It seems his process of meditation was never "relational" in the sense of dialogical engagement with God via the scriptures, but was more of an intuitive openness to the mystical implications of a passage. Nothing wrong with that, imo, but the fruit of such a discipline is not likely to yield a sense of relational union, but more the kind of spiritual realization that is alluded to. Kundalini awakening might or might not be involved, especially with the christed experience. And since duality was never on the table in the first place, it's not likely to be affirmed once an awakening takes place.
In all of this, we do need to realize, as Derek alludes to, that there are natural processes that are in play, even with people who seem to have deep mystical awakenings. Even though we are creatures who are distinct from God, we are simultaneously connected with God by virtue of the fact that God is the giver and sustainer of our existence. Not-separate, but distinct. The fullness of Christian mystical experience affirms this, and the human mind can do so as well with a bit of reflection.
My sense, then, is that Goldsmith's Christian spirituality is somewhat gnostic in that he seems to place little value on God's mediated presence through other people, community, nature, sacraments, etc., but only looks for it within. Hence, he can even be "ordained" without the need of a community or authority of any kind. The application of a term like "master" is also out of sync with Christianity, but resonates more with Eastern approaches.
I hope this helps, but am wondering why you decided to inquire about it, if you don't mind sharing.
Thank you guys for your interest and help. The thing is I don't have a spiritual director since it is not really that usual in my country and believe me I never heard people around me reflecting on such topics. I believe it could be difficult to find a spiritual director well aware of that kind of experiences and willing to openly talk about them.
This is why I like to talk to people here and search for previous topics with the search engine cause I know people here experienced such things and are well aware of all that.
Phil - It's not the first time I heard about Goldsmith and I met people who introduced me to his teachings a while ago but decided to not dive into them that much. But the fact is that a really good brother in Christ felt a connection to what this guy is saying and also seems to experience some sort of interior revelation about what seems to be monism theology I would say.
It's been a while that the question of "individuality" is wandering around in my head and the question of individuality after death is a real interrogation to me... it seems to me that it is the hope and teaching of Christianity that in fact, there is still a "you" after death. But I try to understand the different experiences of people in and out of Christianity also and sometimes it is confusing :/
I am also in the process of reading your book about God - Self - Ego... but if you would recomand books that could help me I would appreciate
Interesting posit, and I think, a very good one. It certainly fits my experience and would fit the others I've read as well.
Oztricker, in Christianity we consider the resurrection of Jesus to shed definitive light on this topic. The one who rises is clearly Jesus, and it seems his memories and loves are still intact. He now enjoys a new, spiritualized physicality, but it's also the same body. So that revelation takes priority over what mystics, metaphysicians, other religions say, at least for Christians. And we believe it has implications for our own eternal destiny -- that our individual personhood survives death.
My book, God and I: Exploring the Connections Between God, Self and Ego is a more in-depth study than that earlier manuscript you're reading. You can find it at the link below. Note that there's a preview you can download.
Yes, the gospel is very much about the person. Transpersonal psychologies are hence very difficult to reconcile with mainstream Christianity. Bernadette Roberts and David R. Hawkins made some efforts in this direction, but they end up with a sort of home-brewed, "fringe" Christianity. I don't know if Joel S. Goldsmith is the same because I haven't read much of his work.
I was reading chapter 2 : Self from Phil's book and it is said that "Self is not God" as monists tends to say, "because Self is not omniscient and have a limited capacity to know" < I'm paraphrasing here
Could it be that the people who seems to have a "memory from their past lives" is just that ? The capacity of the Self to know more than this existance because it is the counciousness of God ? :/
I know that the Bible clearly seems to don't advocate reincarnation but I was wondering what are the people to claim to remember past lives are experiencing so ? I also met someone who say that she was born with the memory of her past lives and claim to know how to speak the language of the Atlantide (she is a new-age medium blabla...)
oztricker, even if reincarnation were true (which I doubt), it would not follow that the memory of past-lives would attest to divine omniscience. A non-monistic interpretation would be that memories of previous lives are still those of a creaturely soul that had a beginning and passed from one body to another in different lives. Omniscience would be much broader -- a knowledge of matters beyond one's personal study and experience, including even past-lives. The divine also possesses other attributes we do not find in any humans, such as omnipresence and omnipotence.
What many monists seem to be giving testimony to is the spiritual dimension of human consciousness itself, and we can get in touch with that via human non-reflecting consciousness, which is what I call Self (Ego being reflecting consciousness). In their meditation, they come upon a direct experience of spirit that goes beyond what the senses and psyche perceive and they assume they've awakened to some kind of inner divinity. But if we use the term divinity in reference to God (which is what it signifies) then we have a problem, for, again, where's the evidence of divine attributes (such as we see in Jesus)?
So, for me, in keeping with basic Christian metaphysical principles, it's important to distinguish between the creature and the Creator, between Self and God.
[QUOTE]Originally posted by oztricker:
Here is an Amazon's presentation of a book from Joel Goldsmith entitled : "Realization of Oneness" :
"Thrust into the role of reluctant master, Goldsmith developed the mystical method of biblical interpretation described in his book Spiritual Interpretation of Scripture (1948). Using this method, Goldsmith would open his Bible randomly and meditate on whatever passage presented itself until enlightenment as to its true esoteric meaning came to him. ..../QUOTE]
Joel was a Christian Scientist practitioner. I don't know alot about him but some of the words in this review like master,enlightenment, esoteric meaning, mystical don't seem like words Joel would express about himself. But then again my knowledge of him is very limited.
And non Catholics had limited information about the Mystical. A Methodist minister explained this to me some years ago. They had all but lost that part of Christianity. Personally i see
this issue as being part of the rise of new age
churchs. In some way filling part of that void
in non Catholic churches
I know someone who studied under Joel. I have reached out to him several times for prayer & was always directed back in some way that would deepen my relationship with God. It was a very intuitive process. He is one of the most loving & giving people i've ever met.
|Powered by Social Strata|