... And now the quest, the greatest adventure of all: the journey that I believe lasts over many lives, that sees us slowly, oh so hesitantly, edge ever onwards and upwards, towards spiritual understanding and wisdom: to that ultimate goal of one-ness with God; with the whole of creation;, with the universe; with that greatest love story ever told.
It takes hold of us in the end. When we at last become conscious that we are on that quest; when we see the journey, and catch glimpses of the goal; of that greatest treasure of all. How we strive then. All the ancient myths hint at it. All the sagas carry snatches of it.
But here is the cliff-hanger:
The final test can only be won when the whole purpose of the test is turned in upon itself. We will stand by that door, after so many lives of struggle, and then the quest, and the pain, and all the struggling will become meaningless. For we shall stand there, and we shall no longer desire to pass. We shall stand there, and we will only want to undergo that final ordeal when it is for the good of all, when it is undergone selflessly for all of God’s creation. The greatest mystery, and the greatest glory of all, is that we can only find ourselves by losing ourselves. When we lose the self, shall we become the SELF. That is the mystery of the crucifixion. And it is the destiny for us all.
What a great story we are in. Chapter after chapter of life after life. Each a story in itself. And then there is the end. All that struggle and endeavour to look back on: to feel. And suddenly, it is as if it doesn’t make sense. Suddenly, we no longer desire to proceed. What a climax for a writer or a filmmaker. What a moment. We pause on the final page, in the final scene. We turn and say we cannot enter that door, for our heart is no longer with our own quest, but is there for the whole of God’s creation. The despair of the audience is total. The quest has seemingly failed.
But lo. The door opens of itself. And there is redemption. For the final turning away, the final realisation that we cannot do this for ourselves: is the final trial and test.
To find ourselves we must first lose ourselves. And that mum was already practising it. She may not have known it, but she lost herself in her children. So she had already begun to find herself.
She, like all of us, was on the journey.