Mysticism, also known as Esotericism and
the Perennial Philosophy, is so inherently intuitive, why
is it so difficult to understand?
The esoteric teaching about knowledge
and being refers to the fact that knowledge cannot be understood
unless there is a corresponding development of being. A man
may know a great deal and understand nothing because his being
is not equal to his knowledge. As a consequence, no inner
union can take place between his being and his knowledge .
. . The man of poor being and great knowledge can only give
out meaningless material that leads nowhere. And not only
this, but he can only complicate everything and make it unintelligible
. . . The conditions of knowledge are no longer understood
because the side of being is ignored.
M. Nicoll. The New
The spirit of God is vigilant
to note in every nation those who are able to receive light,
and they are employed as agents to spread the light according
to man's capacity, and to re-vivify the dead letter. Through
these divine instruments the interior truths of the Sanctuary
were taken into every nation, and modified symbolically according
to their customs, capacity for instruction, climate, and receptiveness.
So that the external types of every religion, worship, ceremonies
and Sacred Books in general have more or less clearly, as
their object of instruction, the interior truths of the Sanctuary,
by which man . . . will be conducted to the universal knowledge
of the one Absolute Truth.
Karl von Eckhartshausen,
The Cloud Upon the Sanctuary
There is thus a ground
of psychological experience, potential in all men, actually
realized in a few, common to all mystics of all lands and
times and accountable for the similarity of their reports.
But upon that common basis we need not be surprised to see
them also erecting various superstructures in accordance with
their particular tenets of philosophy or religion. At bottom,
their actual experiences, at the highest point at least, will
be amazingly alike, but their theories in regard to what has
happened to them may be radically different.
Paul Elmer More. Christian
Once he has recognized his invisible
guide, a mystic sometimes decides to trace his own isnad*
to reveal his spiritual genealogy, that is, to disclose the
'chain of transmission' culminating in his person and bear
witness to the spiritual ascendancy which he invokes across
the generations of mankind. He does neither more nor less
than to designate by name the minds to whose family he is
conscious of belonging.
Henry Corbin. Alone
With the Alone:
Creative Imagination in the Sufism of Ibn 'Arabi
*"Support." In Islam,
the isnad of a tradition is the chain or linkage of human
reporters that authenticate the material as deriving from
the time of Mohammad and his companions. Very roughly comparable
to the Christian concept of apostolic succession and the Jewish
validation of oral law.