The Only Path Left:

Self-Realization through Inner Drive towards Transcendence

& Allowing its Results in Everyday Life

(from "The Path of Cinnabar")





The final chapter of Ride the Tiger is entitled 'The Spiritual Problem'. In this chapter, I developed some of the ideas I had first discussed in the course of my critique of contemporary neo-spiritualism: I pointed out that the present is witnessing the spread of 'spiritualist' tendencies, which - generally speaking - reflect not a positive change of direction, but rather the decomposition of an age of twilight, and, in a way, embody the counterpart to the materialism of such an age. I sought to be as clear as possible regarding these matters, at the cost of potentially disillusioning those readers who had followed my work on esotericism, yoga and initiation so far. All 'neo-spiritualist' cases aside - neo-spiritualism usually serving merely as a poor surrogate for religion - when turning to consider genuine traditional sciences, one must always bear in mind that the present conditions of humanity, marked as they are by the rapid retreat and concealment of all true centers capable of exerting a transcendent influence upon man, makes the effective realization of any 'initiatory disclosure of consciousness' impossible, or only possible in exceptional circumstances. This is also true for the human type I sought to address in Ride the Tiger - although this type of person certainly appears more inclined to self-realization than others, and cannot fail to regard self-realization as the center and ultimate purpose of his own existence. What generally remains an available option for similar individuals today is, on the one hand, to foster an inner drive towards transcendence - a drive unmitigated by any external circumstance (in the same way as 'the hinge of a slammed door remains still', or the needle of a compass turns to point north after each oscillation); on the other, to allow such a drive to produce whatever results it may in everyday life, while awaiting the day in which all obstacles will have been removed - either in this life, or in one of the many other states of being - and the accumulated drive will prove unstoppable. One of the effects produced by the inner drive towards transcendence that I just mentioned is the change in one's attitude toward death: a positive contemplatio mortis that allows the individual to remain unaffected by the prospect of dying; in such a way, the individual, so to speak, puts death behind himself. Yet, this new approach to death does not paralyze the individual: on the contrary, it engenders a superior, elated and free mode of living that is accompanied by a magic, lucid inebriation.






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