Excerpt About Man of Spirit

The Man of Spirit Denies, in Effect, the Personal Essence

To be free from ego means to the man of spirit the realization of Being, and Being is almost always taken to be impersonal. For them it is not possible to experience oneself as a person without identifying with ego. Being a person is for them a clear indication that one is not free. It is also an indication that one is not experiencing Being, but only identifying with a self-image. The personal quality is usually relegated to ego. To be personal and to care about the personal life is taken to indicate the self-centeredness of ego. This is not surprising in view of the fact that wherever we look we encounter only the personality of ego. The experience of the true individuation of Essence is so very unusual that the Personal Essence is called by some Sufis the “rare Mohammedan pearl.” The main reason for this attitude is the absence of the experience of the incomparable pearl in such teachings, or the lack of understanding of such experience, or perhaps sometimes only a matter of emphasis and preference. For such teachings, to feel personal, to value the personal life, to experience oneself as a person, are all seen to be a manifestation of ego. They are taken to be false, and seen as the seeds of suffering. This perspective denies, in effect, the existence of the Personal Essence. It denies the possibility of being a person and being real. It does not see that it is possible to have a personal experience that has a spiritual value, in terms of Being. It is this attitude that is most responsible for making such teachings incomprehensible to the man of the world.

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