Jun 05 2012

Reading Lanzetta’s The Other Side of Nothingness

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“Mysticism is a lover’s tale in search of the Beloved. It is a tale lived in countless hearts throughout history in all corners of the earth. It is a simple human story, as old as life itself, of a passion centered in the self’s quest for truth. Mystics trace the heart’s yearnings for the Other with a love that burns the fabric of being, and that is born from an intensity of life’s devotion for itself. Grown in the soil of desire, the mystical quest leads one beyond the normal conventions of existence to that threshold where the ego is shed for an intimacy so profound that all traces of identity are let go.

“Mysticism is a term used to describe this canvas upon which the soul paints in the wilderness of the heart its passionate return to Source. It is considered to be a transformative experience of one’s encounter with divine presence, or more intently as a union, annihilation, or absorption in the divine nature. The Source is a private matter that is encountered in the intimacy of one’s soul. Language cannot do justice here. Mysticism deals with the return to the absolute singularity of the personal, which paradoxically is the way of unself, the way devoid of self-interest; academically it is a study groping toward an understanding of the unselfinterested, of the highly personal, the singular. Here of course no metaphysics will do for no totalization can be rendered.

“Definitions of mysticism historically are as varied and obscure as the linguistic sources of the term. The most consistent interpretation of the word implies some form of direct and unmediated experience of ultimate reality. The mystic is one who does not just know about this reality, but who has struggled toward intimate unity with it.”

Beverly Lanzetta, The Other Side of Nothingness

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