Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Hearing the Inner Voice

The LORD said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake.  After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” …………1 Kings 19: 11-13
This is a very meaningful verse in the Hebrew Old Testament which we normally gloss over as a miraculous calling of God to Elijah.
This is a calling to every human being. We hide in the cave of darkness and look for answers from a superior being or a higher level of intelligence for answers to our doubts and questions. When Yahweh said to him “Go out and stand on the mountain …….where the Lord was about to appear, Elijah was expecting Yahweh to appear in all sound and fury, as described, in the powerful wind, the earthquake and the fury of the fire but there was only a gentle whisper. Elijah recognizes the voice as the voice of Yahweh and goes out of the cave.
Going out of the cave is an act signifying our moving out of ignorance and darkness into the light of true knowledge. The first question that he hears from the whisper is why he sheltering in ignorance. In every one of us there is this inner voice, a voice which beyond the conceptual meanings of turmoil resultant from our tormented rational mind.
Yesterday I was watching a debate on YouTube between a Buddhist scholar who was also a qualified physicist and a leading cosmologist and particle physicist. On one side there was an argument that pure subjective experience validated through empirical methods and the natural laws which are mathematically defined and repeatedly confirmed, could be the nature of reality. The other side of the argument was that the central axioms on which laws of nature are based are only the product of the rational mind and their validity has already been questioned by leading mathematician Kurt Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem. The argument from the Buddhist thought was that only through a constant practice of silencing the mind that the inner voice of intuitive knowledge can be accessed.
Leading scientists in the fields of Quantum Physics, Cognitive Sciences and other disciplines are seen to be in agreement that our conscious perceptions are extremely limited and in the word of a leading Mathematical cognitive scientist, Stewart Hoffman, our limited perception is a derivative of evolution so as to ensure the survival of the human species.
“I think consciousness will remain a mystery. Yes, that's what I tend to believe. I tend to think that the workings of the conscious brain will be elucidated to a large extent. Biologists and perhaps physicists will understand much better how the brain works. But why something that we call consciousness goes with those workings, I think that will remain mysterious. I have a much easier time imagining how we understand the Big Bang than I have imagining how we can understand consciousness..” ………….Edward Witten, American theoretical physicist and professor of mathematical physics at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey.
This does not mean that our journey to highest source is perennially impeded. The route of listening to the inner voice as pointed out in the Biblical verse quoted is the path beyond the rational mind.
In the New Testament we have a reference to the impossibility of perception through sensory effects of the true cause from which such effect is derived. Christ tells Nicodemus:
“The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.” ………….John 3: 8
Let us silence our mind whenever possible to listen to this small whisper which is felt in our inner being.

Love to you all

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