The mystical nature of the everyday

There is something mystical about every experience.

What is meant by the term mystical?

It means that there is something hidden but not hidden in an ordinary sense such as when an object is hidden behind another object. It is more that there is something hidden in plain sight.

Often people think that symbology is mystical. Things such as iconography and architecture can then be mystical objects because they contain a hidden message whilst hiding nothing. But I do not believe these to be mystical because the message they contain is often mundane. Often people are seeking to give certain statements a mystical legitimacy by hiding them within such symbols. This kind of mysticality is artificial; why would you have to manufacture a sense of mysticism if the knowledge was already mystical?

Another aspect of the mystical is that it is incommunicable. Or rather in-communicability is a result of mysticism. Our everyday experience is mystical. There seems to be something hiding behind it but it also seems to show itself fully. The mystical nature of experience becomes apparent when we attempt to put experience into words. When we attempt to communicate our experience we see that we cannot. This is made apparent when one tries to communicate any experience of sight to a blind person. We find that our description is reduced to the qualia of shape and color. What does a tree look like? It’s green and tall. But try as we might we cannot describe what qualia are like.

There is something evidently and wholly given in experience that when we attempt to grasp it with language evades our grasp. This is the root of all mysticism.


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