One of the problems with the religious treatment of transcendence,
of being identified with the highest self,
has been the taking of it all too literally.
Instead of seeing the sky as a metaphor,
the clergy have created an expectation
that some physical being
will appear divinely from the heavens.
As a result,
we have lost touch with an inner transcendence,
a personal sky within,
and a sensation of being close to our ideals
and to our cosmic destiny.
The way up and the way down are one and the same.
What do I mean?
Perhaps that it’s necessary to go both up and down,
or that I can discover the same mystery
upward or downward.
Maybe we shouldn’t make a distinction
between ascending and going deep.
As above, so below.
The world I discover in my highest meditations
is reflected in the realm of my ordinary life
or deep in my psyche.
We all have a sky within.
The transcendence that inspires me
and charges my soul with wonder and idealism
takes me up out of our current condition,
but at the same time it is immanent,
and down in the glowing heart of nature and of things
This idea of my highest self
being mirrored in my deepest experiences
holds my world together.
I can do everything possible
to be in touch with the unknown vastness of possibility,
while also working out my past,
my daily life
and challenging relationships.
In fact, as long as I do the one openly and with constancy,
I can achieve the other.
Espousing beliefs is not adequate for my highest self.
I have to go further
by seeing no end
to the discovery of what the world and life are all about.
The language I use may seem fixed and unchanging
—God, eternity, love, and even the infinite—
but the opening up of that language to mystery
is one of the important things I can do
if I am to stand at the edge of the world
and glimpse the enlivening mystery of it.