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Evelyn Underhill - Describes what happens on annihilation



Type of Spiritual Experience


Evelyn is describing what happens not necessarily what she experienced.

A description of the experience

Evelyn Underhill

The wheel of life has made its circle. Here, at the last point of its revolution, the extremes of sublimity and simplicity are seen to meet. It has swept the soul of the mystic through periods of alternate stress and glory; tending ever to greater  transcendence, greater freedom, closer contact with "the Supplier of true life."

He emerges from that long and wondrous journey to find himself, in rest and in work, a little child upon the bosom of the Father.

In that most dear relation all feeling, will, and thought attain their end. Here all the teasing complications of our separated selfhood are transcended. Hence the eager striving, the sharp vision, are not wanted any more. In that mysterious death of selfhood on the summits which is the medium of Eternal Life, heights meet the deeps: supreme achievement and complete humility are one.

In a last brief vision, a glimpse as overpowering to our common minds as Dante's final intuition of reality to his exalted and courageous soul, we see the triumphing spirit, sent out before us, the best that earth can offer, stoop and strip herself of the insignia of wisdom and power.

Achieving the highest, she takes the lowest place. Initiated into the atmosphere of Eternity, united with the Absolute, possessed at last of the fullness of Its life, the soul, self-naughted becomes as a little child: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.

The source of the experience

Christian mysticism

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