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The Masks of God

Excerpt from The Silent Questions: A Spiritual Odyssey

by Doug Marmon


Something was changing within me. I realized that it would no longer be the same going forward. Perhaps, it is only after we lose something that we can see how valuable it is. While still feeling unsure about standing on my own feet, half way between the lower Path and discovering the sense of my own spiritual laws, I found a deep feeling of gratitude for all the inner guidance that had been given to me.

It was this sense of wonder that drew me on to learn more about the meaning of the Inner Master. What really was He? I had thought that He was Someone beyond myself reaching out His hand to guide me on, but as the Path vanished and the responsibility became mine to make my own way, I realized I knew very little about the meaning of the Master.

The following is an article I wrote while exploring this subject. The opening paragraph came from something Paul Twitchell once wrote.

If the people are Hindu, It has appeared as Krishna, Buddha, or Vishnu, so they would know him. It is Zeus to the Greeks; Jupiter to the Romans; Ishtar to the Babylonians; Varuna to the Aryans; Jesus to the Christians; and Allah to the Mohammedans. It has appeared to all in every age of this world since its creation. As the vehicle for God It has come in the form to which the people are most accustomed and by the name familiar to them.

These are the masks of God. The one timeless power guides and protects whoever may contact It in every age, yet we know no more of It than our own limited understanding. To see Its true form, to personally experience It in Its unlimited reality, we must remove the masks of God to look beneath.

No outer path, no holy book, no metaphysical formula can show It in Its full force. We must find for ourselves what is the truth behind all life. It is a personal journey.

“I have been asked what I mean by ‘The Beloved,’” Krishnamurti, a spiritual teacher who spoke out against the need for organized religion, told an audience in 1927. “To me it is all—it is Sri Krishna, it is the Master Kuthumi, it is the Lord Maitreya, it is the Buddha, and yet it is beyond all these forms. What does it matter what name you give?”

Krishnamurti freed himself of the religious images that hide reality. He had pierced this veil. Yet, fifty years later, he admitted honestly that he still had not solved the mystery.

“Some element is watching over . . . ” he said. “Something is protecting. . . I t would be speculating to say what. (What we know) is too concrete, is not subtle enough. But I can’t look behind the curtain. I can’t do it. I tried with Pupul Jayakar and various Indian scholars who pressed me . . . Is this something which we cannot discover, mustn’t touch, is not penetrable? I am wondering. I have often felt it is not my business; that we will never find out . . . We are trying with our minds to touch THAT.”

Our minds cannot fathom God in its true form, for Mind creates mirrors and masks that hide the true reality. Like a computer searching for the source of its own intelligence, Mind can only generate more and more theories that reflect upon itself. Soul Travel is the solution to this impasse. Meeting the God force on the inner planes leaves no doubt in the mind of the seeker, for it is a direct experience of Soul. Unless we free ourselves of the human state, we have not gotten beyond our small range of personal reality. We have not yet touched the universal.

“(The) figures of my fantasies brought home to me the crucial insight,” Carl Jung, the psychologist, recorded in his autobiography, “that there are things in the psyche which I do not produce, but which produce themselves and have their own life. Philemon represented a force which was not myself. In my fantasies I held conversations with him, and he said things which I had not consciously thought. For I observed clearly that it was he who spoke, not I. He said I treated thoughts as if I generated them myself, but in his view thoughts were like animals in the forest, or people in a room, or birds in the air, and added, ‘If you should see people in a room, you would not think that you had made these people, or that you were responsible for them.’”

Jung reached beyond the conscious mind to understand the law of the unconscious—a greater world than our personal opinions and narrow theories can imagine. There, thoughts and feelings exist of themselves and we are the visitors that experience them. How did Jung come to this discovery?

“Shortly before this experience,” Jung explains, “I had written down a fantasy of my soul having flown away from me.” According to Jung, this was a significant event, because Soul is our connecting link to the inner worlds. Therefore, if one has the experience of Soul leaving, said Jung, this means that it has withdrawn into the inner worlds where it gives life and visible form to an ageless reality.

With Soul Travel as his key, Jung explored further, opening the way from within, but could never quite open the final door. He had many experiences, but where did his insights come from? Who was Philemon? What was this force that was leading him? Jung continued to search for the Reality behind the mask.

“Psychologically,” Jung continued, “Philemon represented superior insight. He was a mysterious figure to me. At times he seemed to me quite real, as if he were a living personality. I went walking up and down the garden with him, and to me he was what the Indians call a guru . . . In my darkness I could have wished for nothing better than a real, live guru, someone possessing superior knowledge and ability, who could have disentangled for me the involuntary creations of my imagination.”

Why are we, like Jung, so unwilling to accept our experiences for what they are? Why do we only go so far in our understanding of God, and then stop?

At times it seems too hard to shake free of our beliefs. We cannot forget the opinions of the world. Everything rises up in our imaginations to keep us from using the keys that we have. We are afraid that our fictions of reality will crumble, leaving us with nothing, yet this crumbling, this falling apart of everything we’ve been taught is the threshold to truth. This struggle, this dark night in our lives is the shadow before the inner gift arrives.

It can be the presence of the God power, an unexpected spiritual experience, a sudden new awareness. It might be simply a feeling of love, or protection. It is different for each, but it is as if we have crossed some invisible line and found our lives are changed. We find an inner guidance leading our steps, yet here too we must see beneath the masks of God.

“While I sat in the cathedral this morning,” wrote a young boy in his diary, Easter Sunday, 1886, (and later published anonymously as The Boy Who Saw True,) “I was wondering about a lot of things to do with God, even though mama would say it was very wicked, because she is always telling us it’s wrong to question what we are told. Then

suddenly I saw Jesus, and he said, ‘It is never a sin to think, my son, but it is not always wise to tell one’s thoughts to others.’ And he smiled that lovely smile of his, and was gone. So now I’ve been thinking all the more, because if Jesus says it isn’t wicked to think, I don’t mind what anybody else says.”

The next day a similar experience came to encourage this young boy to see behind the masks of God. Once again Jesus appeared, and said, “Be not troubled, my son, for that which the multitudes believe to be true is only the faintest shadow of Truth, and much of it is not the Truth at all.”

This boy had no preconceptions about what he saw. He had that wonderful quality of youth to accept and recognize the love of God that poured through this being he called Jesus. Yet, he was soon to learn the truth about this, as well. On November 25, of the same year, he wrote the following: “Wonders never cease! Fancy, I’ve been wrong about Jesus all this time, and I found it out yesterday. But I don’t care. Whoever he is I love him just as much, and if he asked me to crawl on my hands and knees to London town, I’d try and do it to please him, though I know he’ll never ask me to do anything so silly. Anyhow this is what I heard him say yesterday, ‘My son, be not sad if I tell you that I am not Jesus, but another one whose name is of no consequence, but who has been your teacher through many lives . . . Bear this in mind, my son: it is not what ye believe but what ye are that weighs with the Exalted Ones, for They look into the heart and not into the head to find the shining jewel.’”

Behind all things flows the river of life. Out of the heart of God it comes to bathe the world and soothe it. Thus the Godman appears in every age to find those who are ready. He can take any shape. He could appear to one or many in contemplation. He can appear as a thousand or even a million different forms to a million different people at the same time. Yet, he is always the one that links up Soul with the path to God.

Each know him by a different name, yet often he walks amongst us, unrecognized. We can try to glimpse him beneath ancient images, but we will only find him in his true form on the inner planes through the direct experience of Soul. Then, through his words, we hear the sound of God. Within his eyes we find the light. We then can travel with him as Soul into the higher worlds of reality.

Only Soul, our higher self, knows when it is time. Only Soul can recognize the call. And when the moment arrives, only Soul of itself can remove the masks of God.

As the Path before me disappeared and as I discovered the secret that Soul, Itself, is the Way, I found something unexpected beginning to occur. My whole concept of a spiritual teaching began to dissolve. The doctrines and principles had captured my attention for years. They had drawn me on, but now I could see that they were not the path at all. They were simply doorways.

There is no use in following a spiritual teaching, no matter what kind, unless it is to open the doors and step through. Yet, up until this point, I had been so caught up in the doorways that I failed to step completely through them. I had been sitting there by the entryways of the Path, admiring them. I was lost without those doors, it seemed. They made me feel safe and secure knowing that they were there like eternal rocks that I could turn to when the entire world seemed in chaos around me. But now that was all gone.

It felt like I was Toto pulling back the curtain on the Wizard of Oz. I was looking behind all the doorways of religion, or whatever you want to call these sacred images. The moment I stepped through and left them behind, was the moment I realized that Soul, the higher Self, is the source of all these symbols of belief.

Doug Marman, Author of The Silent Questions, A Spiritual Odyssey

Doug Marman has been writing, lecturing and leading classes on spirituality and the exploration of consciousness for over thirty years. His varied work has led him through successful careers in a wide range of professions, including: reporter, photographer, editor, inventor (with more than 20 patents), engineer, marketing manager, and corporate executive at one of the largest companies in the world. He is now co-founder of a technology start-up. He lives in Washington state, with his wife and son. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed The Whole Truth, The Spiritual Legacy of Paul Twitchell.

The Silent Questions: A Spiritual Odyssey by Doug Marman - Published by Spiritual Dialogues Project, ISBN 978-0-9793260-2-8, 330 pages, $18.95, Available for sale at www.spiritualdialogues.com , Amazon or your local bookseller.


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