Beatific vision[Drugs are often seen as a short route to knowing God because of the common experiences of gaining secret knowledge and new perspectives, and of seeing (illusory or not), or otherwise experiencing God or spirit. The Eleusinian Mysteries, referenced below, included a drink called kykeon, which is thought to have been psychedelic, although there is no real evidence for that beyond the reputed efficacy of the experience and the use of (possibly ergot-contaminated) grain. Whether or not the drug experience really does bring one closer to God (if He is there) is moot, since the subjective experience is real. Apart from the risk to the physical body of ingesting some drugs, Western civilisation joins the esoteric practices which devote time and effort to communing with God in condemning shortcuts such as drug use as false and dangerous in that participants are unprepared for the experience and don’t know what to do with it once they have it.]
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
“In Christian theology, the beatific vision is the ultimate direct self communication of God to the individual person. A person possessing the beatific vision reaches, as a member of redeemed humanity in the communion of saints, perfect salvation in its entirety, i.e. heaven. The notion of vision stresses the intellectual component of salvation, though it encompasses the whole of human experience of joy, happiness coming from seeing God finally face to face and not imperfectly through faith. (1 Cor 13:11–12)1It is related to the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox belief in theosis [becoming God-like.2], and is seen in most – if not all – church denominations as the reward for Christians in the afterlife.Pasted from <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beatific_vision> ‘In the Eleusinian MysteriesSocrates’ mystic vision of initiation from Plato’s Phaedrus.“There was a time when with the rest of the happy band they saw beauty shining in brightness – we philosophers following in the train of Zeus, others in company with other gods; and then we beheld the beatific vision and were initiated into a mystery which may be truly called most blessed, celebrated by us in our state of innocence before we had any experience of evils to come, when we were admitted to the sight of apparitions innocent and simple and calm and happy, which we beheld shining in pure light.” Phaedrus:250′Pasted from <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beatific_vision>
“11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” [↩]
[Potions can fulfill all the alchemical and Faustian aspirations of humans, from finding God, to gaining secret knowledge, to restoring health and promoting long life – even immortality. At least that’s what we’ve imagined over time. These are essentially also the same things promised by the two trees in the Garden of Eden in the origin story of the Abrahamic religions of Judaism, Islam, and Christianity.]
“The Fountain of Youth is a spring that supposedly restores the youth of anyone who drinks or bathes in its waters. Tales of such a fountain have been recounted across the world for thousands of years, appearing in writings by Herodotus (5th century BCE), the Alexander romance (3rd century CE), and the stories of Prester John (early Crusades, 11th/12th centuries CE). Stories of similar waters were also evidently prominent among the indigenous peoples of the Caribbean during the Age of Exploration (early 16th century), who spoke of the restorative powers of the water in the mythical land of Bimini.
The legend became particularly prominent in the 16th century, when it became attached to the Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León, first Governor of Puerto Rico. According to an apocryphal combination of New World and Eurasian elements, Ponce de León was searching for the Fountain of Youth when he traveled to what is now Florida in 1513, but this is a myth. The legend says that Ponce de Leon was told by Native Americans that the Fountain of Youth was in Bimini and it can restore Youth to anyone.”Pasted from <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fountain_of_Youth>
[The search for secret/hidden/lost knowledge still goes on today, with a special emphasis on drug use, including the restoration of knowledge of plant use by other cultures which was in many cases concealed in the contact with European who strongly disapproved of “pagan” practices. Terence McKenna and his brother worked to those ends in the second half of the twentieth century. Both DMT and Psilocybin are powerful entheogens. DMT and harmine are in plants which feature in the Bible – Acacia and Syrian Rue.]
After the partial completion of his studies, and his mother’s death from cancer in 1971, McKenna, his brother Dennis, and three friends traveled to the Colombian Amazon in search of oo-koo-hé, a plant preparation containing dimethyltryptamine (DMT). Instead of oo-koo-hé they found fields full of gigantic Psilocybe cubensis mushrooms, which became the new focus of the expedition. In La Chorrera, at the urging of his brother, McKenna was the subject of a psychedelic experiment in which the brothers attempted to bond harmine (harmine is another psychedelic compound they used synergistically with the mushrooms) with their own neural DNA, through the use of a set specific vocal techniques. They hypothesised this would give them access to the collective memory of the human species, and would manifest the alchemists’ Philosopher’s Stone which they viewed as a “hyperdimensional union of spirit and matter”. McKenna claimed the experiment put him in contact with “Logos”: an informative, divine voice he believed was universal to visionary religious experience.Pasted from <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terence_McKenna#Studying_and_traveling>
[They say we do drugs to alleviate our pain and become addicted to feel normal again. Over and over again the theme is that drugs only provide an illusion and that they are the tool of the Devil to deceive. Consequently, those who do drugs to find God or to unveil secret knowledge are following in the footsteps of Faust – taking shortcuts, doing forbidden and evil things, and falling into the traps of Satan. We don’t know – tentanda via – the way must be tried – say we, but be aware and don’t be naive. The search for truth isn’t for fools, and the price can be worse than death.]
Proverbs 31New International Version (NIV)Sayings of King Lemuel31 The sayings of King Lemuel—an inspired utterance his mother taught him.Listen, my son! Listen, son of my womb!Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!Do not spend your strength on women,your vigor on those who ruin kings.It is not for kings, Lemuel—it is not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer,lest they drink and forget what has been decreed, and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.Let beer be for those who are perishing,wine for those who are in anguish!Let them drink and forget their povertyand remember their misery no more.Pasted from <https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Proverbs%2031&version=NIV%3BKJV>
[Writing in his 1564 Monas Hieroglyphica, Dee has a sudden anxiety he is sinning by giving away too many of God’s secrets. The Monas was Dee’s magnum opus, his alchemical meditation on the cosmos. He needn’t have worried: apparently the Monas is incomplete without an accompanying explanation or because too many years have passed, and we’ve lost the context of the 15th century. ]
…Thus it is demonstrated that it must not be divided. All the parts of a line are lines. This is a point, and this confirms our hypothesis. Therefore, the point does not form part of our Binary and yet it forms part of the integral form of the Binary. It follows that we must take notice of all that is hidden within this hypostatic form and understand that there is nothing superfluous in the linear dimension of our Binary. But because we see that these dimensions are common to both lines, they are considered to receive a certain secret image from this Binary. By this we demonstrate here that the Quaternary is concealed within the Ternary. 0 God! pardon me if I have sinned against Thy Majesty in revealing such a great mystery in my writings which all may read, but I believe that only those who are truly worthy will understand.
[The Monas Hieroglyphica is also the symbol – an amalgamation of symbols – he designed which encompasses the cosmos:]
[Some people think that John Dee was an inspiration for – at least – Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus. Here, Charlotte Fell Smith copies from Dee’s journal a conversation with the (supposed) Archangel Michael that echoes Faustus’s conversation with Mephisto.
From Charlotte Fell Smith’s biography of John Dee:]
“The sole object of his ambition was the attainment of legitimate wisdom.When conversing with the angels, how near within his grasp it seemed! Michael’s exposition seemed almost to promise it to him: —`Wilt thou have witt and wisdom? Here it is.’Michael points each time to a figure of seven squares shown within a circle of light.`The exaltation and government of princes is in my hand.In counsayle and Nobilitie, I prevayle.The Gayne and Trade of Merchandise is in my hand. Lo! here it is.The Qualitie of the Earth and Waters is my knowledge, and I know them.And here it is.The motion of the Ayre and those that move in it, are all known to me. Lo! here they are.I signifie wisdom. In fire is my government. I was in the beginning and shall be to the end.Mark these mysteries. For this knowne, the state of the whole earth is knowne, and all that is thereon. Mighty is God, yea, mighty is he who hath composed for ever. Give diligent eye. Be wise, merry and pleasant in the Lord.’“Pasted from <http://www.johndee.org/charlotte/pdf/charlotte.pdf>
[Wikipedia article on Kelley summarizes Dee’s interest in his angelic readings:]
‘Dee considered the dictation of angelic material highly important for three reasons. First, Dee believed the angelic represented a documentable case of true glossolalia, thereby “proving” that Kelley was actually speaking with angels and not from his imagination. Second, the angels claimed that their language was actually the original prototype of Hebrew: the language with which God spoke to Adam, and thus the first human word. Third, the angelic material takes the form of a set of conjurations that would summon an extremely powerful set of angelic beings who would reveal many secrets to those who sought them, especially the key to the philosopher’s stone, to god-like wisdom, and eternal life.’Pasted from <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Kelley>
[He got the wrong one. Mephistopheles works demonic magic.]
In the later Middle Ages, forms of Western esotericism such as alchemy and astrology were constructed on Christian foundations, combining Christian theology and doctrines with esoteric concepts.
Giovanni Pico della Mirandola’s Apologia (“Apologia J. Pici Mirandolani, Concordiae comitis” published in 1489) states that there are two types of magic, which are theurgy (divine magic), and goetia (demonic magic). These disciplines were explained as the “Operation of the Stars”, just as alchemy was the “Operation of the Sun”, and astrology the “Operation of the Moon.” Kabbalah was also an active discipline. These spiritual traditions allegedly aided the esoteric to arise to higher forms of consciousness, and arise to a better understanding of God, The Self, and the Universe.
Esoteric Christians practice these forms or traditions, which they believe are all a part of the same spiritual truth, which help to convey “mystery knowledge”, which can only be learned directly from spiritual experience via Theurgy, Kabbalah, or Mysticism.
In the 16th and 17th centuries, this was followed up by the development of Theosophy and Rosicrucianism. Behmenism also developed around this time, as did Freemasonry.
Paul the Apostle tells a story of a man who went up to heaven and heard secret things.
2 Corinthians 12:
I must go on boasting. Although there is nothing to be gained, I will go on to visions and revelations from the Lord.
I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows— was caught up to paradise.
He heard inexpressible things, things that man is not permitted to tell.
…What Faust wouldn’t hope for that? Paul goes on to tell of being plagued by the Devil:
…there was given me a sting of my flesh, an angel of Satan, to buffet me.
For which thing thrice I besought the Lord, that it might depart from me.
And he said to me: My grace is sufficient for thee; for power is made perfect in infirmity. Gladly therefore will I glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
For which cause I please myself in my infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ. For when I am weak, then am I powerful.