To be spiritual is to have an abiding respect for the great mysteries of life — the profound distinctiveness of other souls, the strange beauty of nature and the animal world, the ineffable complexity of our inner selves, the unfathomable depths of the Inexplicable One. The practice of mystery enhances our understanding of the complexity of reality. It is an affront to the modern need to have answers to every question and our tendency to create tidy systems with a cubbyhole for every problem and aspiration The antidote to these reductionist approaches is to rest in the riddle of not knowing. If you sometimes think that answers are wisdom, it is time to try practicing mystery.
Spirituality and Practice
Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.
Try to learn to live with paradoxes and not to be afraid to admit “I don’t know.”
For who has known the mind of God?
Or who has become God’s counselor?
Paradox is in fact a hallmark of western spirituality, an ongoing reminder that mystery is the heart, the atmosphere and completion of our spiritual quest, that the ultimately untouchable is forever at our fingertips.
To love God is to follow the mystery, to be led by its showing and withdrawing.
John S. Dunne
The possession of knowledge does not kill the sense of wonder and mystery. There is always more mystery.
Love is an endless mystery, for it has nothing else to explain it.
Every experience is a paradox in that it means to be absolute, and yet is relative; in that it somehow always goes beyond itself and yet never escapes itself.
I would rather live in a world where my life is surrounded by mystery than live in a world so small that my mind could comprehend it.
Harry Emerson Fosdick