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FOREWORD

In the Upanishads, Sankara, the great Advaitin scholar, characterizes the process by which one comes to know the Self as follows: “That which is devoid of all duality is described by adhyaropa and apavada, i.e. by super- imposition and negation, by attribution and denial.”

This book is about that paradoxical process of freeing the Self from all forms of attachment, suffering, and spiritual temptations only to discover, in that final phase of illumination, that the Self was never separate from God. There was no real duality to be overcome. This is the conclusion in the most famous instruction on the Self in the Chandogypa – Upanishad in chapter 9, verse 4: “Tat tvam asi, That Thou Art.”

But it would be a trap of the spiritual ego to simply know this with the mind; one must go through all of the stages of awakening and purification passionately, with one’s whole being.

Devrah’s book is a powerful application of this principle, for it has been birthed from the depths of her being. It has emerged from the burning crucible of her life so that the realization of non-duality is the Truth she inhabits moment by moment.

Rarely has a soul written of these classic stages of the mystical path with such candidness, creativity, and courage. Her “Door Openers” and “Door Closers,” which describe how the same experience can either open us to God or close us off, depending on our relationship to it, are unique.

 

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But when Devrah describes her Dark Night of the Soul, you feel utterly drawn into the immensity of her heart and thus of God’s Heart. For Devrah’s book is a passion- ate account of a lover of God who finally realizes that this whole journey is about Love. It is about God’s Love that has been seeking us since the beginning of time. In the Catholic Mass, there is a phrase, “Quarens me sedisti lassus,” which translates as “Faint and weary Thou haste sought me.” The great Jewish mystic, Simone Weil, interprets this to mean it is God seeking us out; not the other way around as is commonly believed.

Devrah’s fearless account of her own journey reminds us that we are both the subject and the object of our longing.

Shirley Anne McMurtry, Ph.D.

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