Mind is necessary to achieve spiritual discernment: it accumulates, classifies, processes and assimilates the information we receive from our spiritual teachers. It seems paradoxical that, at the same time, it is a limitation to reach “the true”. But, indeed, it is.
In a previous article we analyzed how, throughout evolution, human beings had reached the maximum of individualization, of materialization, and this thanks to the development of the mind (or lower manas), which allowed us to reach “the consciousness of seeing ourselves as individual beings, separated from all other beings”. And we proposed as the next step to return to “the etheric consciousness that would allow us to know ourselves united to one another as if invisible roots united us to all other human beings, to all living beings, to all of Creation”.
It seems that reaching that higher consciousness requires transcending the lower mind or manas to enter the reality of the Higher Manas.
At first, the mind is satisfied with the acquisition of knowledge, but then it discovers that this is insufficient, that another step is required to convert the data into experiential reality, to move from knowledge to wisdom.
We will agree that someone can know perfectly the meaning of all the traffic signs, the mechanical operation of a vehicle, how to drive it correctly, but as long as he does not sit down in front of a steering wheel, press the ignition key and start to move the vehicle correctly on the road, we will not be able to say that he “knows how to drive”. In this case, knowledge has become wisdom.
The mind usually feels satisfied when it “understands” a subject and may naively conclude that with the information received it is sufficient, it has reached the Truth.
But what is Truth?
The Truth, the Universal Truth, is not a collection of ideas or philosophical postulates, but a Reality. An order of existence that cannot be accessed suddenly, but through a process. The path can be seen, under this perspective, as a process of questions and answers that one asks and answers.
One must find good questions, which are different for each one and differ according to the vital moment. A good question does not arise from a logical or even philosophical curiosity, but from a vital need. A good question is asked with the whole being, a being that wants to solve the great mystery of life. A good question is also a good question according to the attitude of the person asking it; a good question is one whose answer we don’t condition, that is, one whose answer we are ready to accept whatever it is.
A good question calls for the corresponding answer, but not as a logical-deductive thought process or an emotional process (although it may be accompanied by them to some extent), but as an illumination of consciousness, an inner certainty that also commits us. It is given to us “on the condition” that we try to apply it; only by doing so, by honestly trying to put it into practice, are we opening the door for the appearance of the next “good question”.
Sometimes, a question is so ambitious that its answer is, in principle, very vague, and requires, for its understanding, the previous formulation and answer of many other small questions. This process of questions and answers gives us very valuable, but always, to a great extent, provisional results. That is why we have been told: “be willing to abandon today’s truth for tomorrow’s” and “seek more light and it will be given to you”.
Thus, we understand that the transition from information acquisition to subjective experience occurs through connection with the spiritual Source of Light. Therefore, although the mind is necessary to understand what is transmitted to us -for example, in this very article-, it is even more necessary to transcend it, to leave it behind, in order to experience the contact with the Universal Truth.
It seems a paradox that we are trying to reason these things out and, in addition, in our attempt, we always encounter the obstacles derived from the pride of acquiring spiritual information. The transition from the mental to the truly spiritual is described as moving from “having” to “doing”, and from “doing” to “being”.
For when we move from knowledge to wisdom through action, it transforms us, changes our identity and allows us a new look at the Truth.
In addition, this transition is facilitated when the attempt to control the process is given up. The most important thing is to put faith and trust in the spiritual intention and surrender to the Divinity. So, an attitude of almost constant surrender and surrender becomes necessary, which is favored by deep humility.
If we succeed, if we are able to place our instrument, which is the mind, at the service of the Other in us, at the service of the Divinity, that very sublime intention can make the mind so sanctified that it becomes, instead of an obstacle on the path, a springboard to the knowledge of Truth.
Spiritual study carried out in this way, as we have tried to explain, uses the mind to reveal that it must be transcended, moving from “knowing about” to “becoming.