Why Be a Mystic?

wrote in The Two Yous that identifying with the lower self instead of the higher Self is the root of all your problems. What does a mystical understanding offer to help us with our problems? By identifying with the higher Self, our entire perspective on everything changes radically. Here are some of the key areas where that change occurs.


When our lower self is caught up in emotional upheavals of fear, anger, anxiety, depression – our higher Self can look upon these emotions with understanding and compassion, but not be caught up in them. We become detached from our negative emotions. We know that in the higher Self, there is perfect peace, love and safety. We are able to put the problems of our lower self into perspective.

Our lower self is constantly on the defensive – feeling the need to justify itself, defend itself, advance itself. The lower self constantly needs to toot its own horn, and prove what a good self it is. The higher self is already at perfect peace with itself. It requires no defense, no justification. The mystic can let go of the terrible burden of constantly justifying himself. He knows that his lower self is imperfect, flawed and limited, and he is compassionate with his lower self. He is free from the terrible burden of self-justification.


The lower self is basically a reactive self. It reacts, based on the programming of its genetics and upbringing, to various situations in a predictable way. The lower self often feels caught in a trap of its own making. It may want to stop certain self-destructive behaviors, but it can’t seem to stop falling into them like a robot whenever its programming is triggered. The higher Self, on the other hand, is totally free. It can come down into any situation and act rather than re-act.


The higher Self realizes that all other beings are really part of itself in different masks. What happens to all beings becomes just as important as what happens to one particular lower self. The higher Self naturally reaches out in compassion to all these many expressions of itself. There is no longer any selfish distinction. All beings are loved.


To be in contact with the higher Self means that complete joy and contentment are always available at any moment. The experience of union with the higher Self is transcendently joyful – and can be experienced no matter what the outward circumstances.


The higher Self has the ability to manifest anything that is needed in the physical world. Once the obstacles to communion with the higher Self are removed, anything that the lower self truly needs can be created or attracted by the higher Self. Financial abundance, health, relationships or anything else that would benefit the lower self can all be generated through communion with the higher Self.

From the points above, it should be easy to see how a mystical understanding and practice can benefit anyone who undertakes it. Whatever problems the lower self is suffering: emotional difficulties, anxiety, destructive behaviors, health problems, or even financial difficulties can all benefit from mystical practice.

As the mystic Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj put it: “In my world, nothing ever goes wrong. You do not have any problems, only your body has problems…In your world, nothing stays, in mine nothing changes.”

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