- A SECRET DOOR
PART I BY RASA VON WERDER
Now we come to one of my favorite - albeit confounded - topics - one which few people understand. That is why I must speak, because so little is said about it and that which is said is repressive rather than enlightening. It is the "Just say no to sex" that makes sex sound like an illegal drug that must be avoided at all costs, and with little or no explanation of what the goal of celibacy really is, makes people afraid of sex, but at the same times, does not help them to get over it and reach the Nirvana of celibacy - and there you have it: a world of confusion and hypocrisy.
Celibacy sounds, to most people, like a bad diet. You think of deprivation and hunger and want. Here you are giving up something with much benefits - something you don't think you can live without. And no one is teaching you anything but just say no. Just stop. Just take a vow and cut it out. Sex itself is a center of our society, but it is spoken about with humor or snickers, never in that great positive light that each person seeks sex for. For sex is not seen as an evil to the individual. It contains within it the promise of all that is good, and should not be, the individual reasons, either repressed, laughed at or perverted. There must be a healthy, sane, decent application of sex. Then why isn't society addressing it that way?
This is part of the complication of culture. The answer to the question of why sex is so maligned is Patriarchy. In Matriarchy, sex was not evil. In Patriarchy, sex is used to control women, and therefore it is maligned. The proscriptions against sex are mostly used against women (but also homosexuals) in order to judge and condemn women; to have the liberty of calling women sluts, whores, nymphomaniacs and red-lettered adulteresses. In this double standard men are virile and have a lust for life when doing the exact same things. Only recently - in about the last twenty five years or so, (since 1979, when a Manhattan Beach child care center was accused of abuse, starting the whole child-abuse discovery revolution) have men actively been prosecuted for sex crimes.
That first issue - repression and the double standard - is confusing the whole idea of celibacy. On the side of the "sex is natural" argument, people are trying to remove repression, double standard and mockery of sex. That is well and good. A big hand for freedom of good and natural sex. It is as Matriarchy would have it. But please hear me - THAT IS NOT THE ISSUE WE ARE ADDRESSING HERE.
The topic at hand is the path of mystical theology, the land of the saints. It has been spoken of as asceticism and death to self. This death to self, this denial of the flesh, is a two-sided coin or double-edged sword. On the one hand, it is an ending, but on the other it is a beginning. It is like darkness and light. Light follows darkness, there is no mistake. In the spiritual life, light also follows the dark night of the soul. Dark night - which I have spoken of time and time again - is a necessary part of spiritual life. It cannot be avoided. I attribute dark night to the time of actual spiritual growth - although the victim feels none of it at the time - but after the dark night, you see the results of the growth. The recipient of dark night sees it as a negative, a temporary chastisement from God and loss of God. When the light returns, the punishment is at an end, and relief is at hand. The soul rejoices. The soul usually does not see dark night as a gift, but rather, some negative thing, probably caused by one's transgressions, at best, the grace of reparation for sin for other souls. So dark night is a hardship to be borne but not something anyone yearns for.
I urge the listener to take another look at the dark night of the soul and all it entails. I preach that something good is happening here, albeit in the unconscious. You must have faith that when the light returns, you will see the result of the dark night. The dark night is not a negative, but an absolute positive to the spiritual life. For an example, the greatest Dark Night ever told was the story of Our Lord Jesus Christ, from the night in Gethsemane to the " My God, Into Thy Hands I Commend My Spirit" words that He spoke. Was not His Dark Night the Apex, the Climax, the Grandest moment of our deliverance? Without it, would not His life seem incomplete? It is this fitting climax which tells the whole story. He gave all, he lost all, and He found all for himself and us.
Now we come to the teachings of every saint who ever lived. The greatest saints had the greatest sacrifices and pains. They suffered, and they strove to achieve that death to self. And they had terrible dark nights of the soul. Every biography of every saint tells the same tale. The greater the saint, the greater the deprivations and conversely, the mystical experiences. Can you see the connection here?
Granted, I will admit to this: Not everyone can travel this path. There are souls who will march to Hell down the broad highway where most go. There are souls who will coast through spirituality lukewarm and passive, their spiritual life sporadic and meaningless. Perhaps by the skin of their teeth, through someone's prayers, they will make it to heaven into the lowest place. There are others who do not lose their souls, but have to live again and again before they can even think of final repose in the glories of heaven. However that works, even the smallest degrees of sainthood are not for everyone.
But here, I am not speaking to these. I am speaking to you who hunger for enlightenment, and thirst for Truth. You are of God and for God, and you cannot rest till you find Her. You follow the beat of another drummer, and I will say whatever I have to encourage, shame, and force you to take a look at yourself and decide what you have to do to gain the Kingdom of Heaven. So in this article let us forget the not-ready-for-prime-time-players and concentrate on you, who are headed for holiness.
In life, all motivation is with the stick and the carrot, the punishment and the reward. Now I will help you rethink death to self in general and celibacy in particular. As I said before, society mostly talks about the stick. You've heard enough of the stick, in terms of diseases, lack of respect for women, rules of religion. That goes on hypocritically every day, and we are all sick of it. I will speak of the downside of sex but from a very different angle, the spiritual one. But first, the rewards.
THE REWARDS OF CELIBACY & DEATH TO SELF
The human creature is composed of two elements, the physical and the spiritual. The spiritual may not be active in each person, but when it is active, the following is true: Spiritual acumen is different from worldly acumen. Since the spirit world or metaphysical is unseen and unheard it cannot be measured and understood in an ordinary way. Therefore, how is it perceived and understood? How does anyone know what is going on in the non-physical reality? How could all scriptures have been written, where countless people are communicating with "God," listening to God, hearing the rules and admonitions of God, hearing God's answer to prayer and rebukes? How could saints like Thomas of Aquinas figure out what types of angels there are, and what kind of sections they are in, like choirs and seraphs and so on? How could anyone figure out what is the Holy Trinity, and who saw the Angel Gabriel speaking to Mary about being pregnant with the unseen Holy Spirit? The entire Bible and all scriptures of all religions have to do with the unseen and the unknown, and so, how is this seen and become known?
Have I made it clear that there are two sets of seeing, and understanding and perception of reality - and they are the physical and the spiritual? Then my simple answer to the above is that physical is seen with physical faculties, and spiritual with spiritual faculties. Now what are the spiritual faculties? They are the following, first: INTERIOR SENSES, which is seeing, tasting, feeling, smelling and hearing the metaphysical. Second there are the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. Most notable, those that deal with knowledge, understanding and wisdom. Through these three Gifts, a person perceives the other side in a variety of ways. There is teleportation, for instance. (Not bilocation, which is fairly common and does not require holiness.) I myself have teleported to Purgatory and Heaven, which are miracles of the Holy Spirit. (I have never been to Hell although I have had visions of it and dreams, and have had my share of hell on earth.) There is the ability to see the inside of the souls of others on earth, and to know the secrets of their hearts and minds. This is like looking into the "hard drive" of a computer, or the inside of a person's soul. This is a great gift of the Holy Spirit which I have. There is the gift of seeing things of the past and of the future, and this could come under the heading of "prophecy" or "word of knowledge" or "knowledge" or "understanding" or "wisdom," depending on how you interpret the Gifts.
has these Gifts? Who has interior faculties that work? Who has Consciousness?
Now it follows then, that the person who does not have these abilities will not understand them. And such a person will be attached to the things of the world and the flesh and live in that world in their consciousness. This lower consciousness can be defined in a number of ways. Yogis call it delusion, and delusion it is. I will also refer to it as the world of the shallow and also the world of ice, snow and cold.
So now, be aware of the two worlds: the Kingdom of God and the World/Flesh Domain - two opposing realms (except in miracle vision where the two become one, the way God sees it.) Now to be absorbed in God is to be abstracted from the world/flesh, and to be sunk into the world/flesh is to be absent from God.
One of the easiest and quickest ways to fall into the lower consciousness is through physical attraction to another person or the idea of sex/lust of itself. I noticed right away that the devotees are "falling" by sex - or interest in sex, through that process we call romantic love or infatuation, or the promise of what earthly love brings. This is truly the linchpin of mystical attainment or lack thereof. The men I have are falling by the wayside through sex. Either they cannot bear the thought of giving up sex, or they know they should be celibate and want to be, but they are so hysterical at the thought of giving it up they walk away from the calling.
WHAT TO DO ABOUT SEX
My advice to all those who want to devote themselves to God and myself completely is not to even think about the vow of celibacy yet. Take temporary vows - to yourself - of how long you can stand. I did it for years, one year at a time, then off the wagon. Then again, two years, then one year later. This went on and off for about ten years before Our Holy Mother appeared to me and asked me to take the vow. She gave me the grace to keep it. Was it easy? It was painful, but decreasingly so. I ask the devotees to follow my path. Struggle for a long time and pray. Then wait for the Feminine Divine to appear to you and suggest taking the vow. That means it is time. When you are with me, of your own free will, you are not on a permanent vow. You try and keep celibacy, but if you cannot, it is not a mortal sin. You have not broken a vow to God, only your own discipline. This will keep the anxiety from overtaking you.
THE DEVIL WILL ATTACK WHEN YOU ANTICIPATE CELIBACY
is how the devil works. As long as you are living a normal life, he usually
leaves you alone. But the moment you undertake grand things, one of which
is celibacy, you stir him up. You also awaken your own anxiety. The devil
will quickly use your anxiety to show you how terrible it will be as a
celibate. He will paint a dreary picture of all the love, romance and
fun you will lose. You will be lonely, alone, without intimacy and companionship.
He will stir you up so badly that you will be ready to run to a brothel
and spend your life savings on a binge.
This is why the dispensation I am giving you - my devotees - of ten years of struggle before the final vow. Here you will allay your anxiety and get prepared for the final decision. We don't want you to take a vow you cannot keep. Then you would hate yourself and feel you have failed. What a blow to your self esteem that would be!
Here is what a person thinks they are losing - and sometimes do. What you must bear in mind is that for everything that you lose - GOD WILL REPLACE IT WITH SOMETHING BETTER, HIGHER AND MORE BEAUTIFUL. But in the beginning, you don't see that. (Yes, in some cases, grace comes strongly and it blows out any need for sex for a long time. This happened to me when I went deeply into yoga at times. I scarcely thought of sex when grace was that strong. It simply replaced the need for it. But that strong grace eventually leaves, and the flesh returns.) Most times you do not see the ecstasy God will bring when the sex drive goes away, when everything of the world dims. All you think of is the loss. This is how it goes:
"I will lose the intimacy. I will not be able to bond, to find consolation from the mind, heart and body of another person. I long to feel wanted, to belong. I long to be accepted. How can I cut myself off from love? Love nourishes me, it comforts me. I will give up all chances for that. I will be all alone, with my hand. My hand isn't going to make me feel accepted and loved. I will feel unwanted. How can I bear this?"
It is true that even the very sex act itself - without love or intimacy - conjures up the "feel good" hormones. Just banging away, with a stranger, or masturbating, does have physical/emotional/mental benefits. This cannot be denied and it would be foolish to do so.
But I must admit, that the sex drive is also torture. It is the torture of a need that surfaces again, and again. The need says, "I must have orgasm." This need confuses the mind, as all such needs make the mind lower itself to them, and thinking changes. So that a person starts to make excuses around that need: "I love God, and this does not interfere with God." (Yet you have no idea how much closer you will come to God when your sex drive diminishes.)
About excuses people make when they have needs and addictions. A friend of mine has been saying for years, "I can give up smoking if I want to. But I don't want to."
He's been smoking for over forty years. Then people say they can "take or leave sex," yet they are doing it regularly. They do not realize how attached they are to their partner - be it wife or girlfriend. They don't notice any pain because the need is always satisfied. This very same person would see how needy they are if their mate left them.
Frequently we center our lives around our needs - otherwise we could not fulfill those needs. If you need a drug, life revolves around it. If you have a great habit, life has to be shoved here and there to make allowance for it. Sex is like that. Without realizing it, the need to fill that sex drive with a partner will touch much of your life. Your time, attention, spending, mental, physical and emotional energy and focus. All this does take away from the pursuit and the love of God. I know there will be many objections here concerning the need for marriage and the greatness of it. Marriage is a bit complicated. Marriage might be a good thing, in some cases. But for me, marriage meant sex, and sex was a stumbling block. I no longer wanted to indulge in it. I had gotten it out of my system and did not want my system to awaken the need. Luckily, my husband respected me and did not push for sex. In fact, he feared offending God as much as I did, and told me that companionship was the most important part of our relationship.
I learned that when I gave up sex, all the things that I yearned for, in the flesh, by having sex, were given to me by God. To be perfectly honest, sex itself usually held great promise, but in the end, brought disappointment and pain. You imagine all sorts of love. For women, it's the Knight in Shining Armor, Sir Galahad. The Hero types only appeared AFTER I became celibate! The selfish, lower nature men surrounded me when I was doing sex, each waiting to be chosen. But when that was not forthcoming, they left, and the men of a higher nature became my friends. I no longer chose my companions for looks and sex appeal. That was one of the smartest decisions I ever made! Now I took men for their character, intelligence and dependability. These men strengthened me instead of draining me and my self esteem went sky high!
THE MASCULINE DIVINE
The intimacy - romantic love that I had sought in men was replaced by God in what I call "The Masculine Divine." Once I sacrificed sex, it happened. It did not happen right away, but a few years later. And thereafter, it became stronger and stronger. God began to appear to me as the men who were the handsomest and sexiest I had ever imagined. God appeared as movie stars and tv stars. But it was under the image of these bodies that God entered into me ecstatic grace. It was better than sex. I assure you, Jesus appears to me as Tom Selleck at certain times. When he is Tom, it is something very special. It means "divine spouse" in the most intimate way possible. That way is The Stigmata. This is a long story and deserves another article, so I will leave it at that. Succinctly I will say that Jesus as Tom means,
"You died with me on the Cross, and now I am here for you as your lawful wedded husband. We have had lots of children before, and now, I will put grace into you again (through his heart, mind and penis) and you will be pregnant with another child. Another child will be born of us into the Kingdom of God."
Things like this transpire that could have never happened had I held on+to sex. You cannot compare sex with Jesus to sex with a man. God does something to you that is indescribable except by the term ECSTASY. I had read about saints having ecstasy, but until it happens, you cannot imagine it. It is like winning the Lotto - the joy of suddenly having millions of dollars. I have awakened many a day with such experiences and a warm glow held me throughout the day. God loves me! It is so wonderful to be loved, and this cannot be taken away!
When Jesus appears to me as husband it is always because some souls are going to receive the born-again experience. This is the process of birth into the Kingdom of God. Jesus uses me as His conduit of grace, and symbolically, His penis is the funnel of grace. I never feel his penis in the gross way that sex feels on earth. On rare times, I know he is on top of me and it is happening in a subtle way, but there is no hint of grossness, only spiritual, emotional ecstasy.
This subtle consciousness cannot be given you until and unless you are cleansed of strong physical attachments. The sex drive will definitely keep you on the "animal" level. Your consciousness on this level is gross. It sees things in a crude way. But when you rise in the spiritual realm, your mind and senses become "soft and warm" like in a good trance. Your being dilates. Your unconscious is opened, and the windows and doors of your faculties open up to greater power, greater vision. This is hard to understand for earthly people. You have to experience it to understand.
END OF PART ONE