Neti, neti – Not that, not that

Many say that spiritual truth cannot be discussed as something; it can only be discussed as not something or another.  I really love a good spiritual conversation.  But spiritual conversations are for my entertainment, and I know it.

“Those who know do not say, those who say do not know.”  These wise words from the Tao Te Ching are familiar to many.  And Saint Thomas Aquinas stated in Summa Theologica, “About God, we cannot say what He is but rather what He is not.  And so we cannot speak about how He is but rather how He is not.”

The truth of the truth is that true spirituality really cannot be discussed.  But why? There are many spiritual teachers out there.  And they have a lot to say.  Can’t we just go with that?

The fact is that truth has no limitations, but words do have limitations.  Truth is a reality beyond the reality that words can cover.

Anthony de Mello gives a great example.  If someone asks you what does a green mango taste like.  You can answer, and it may well be correct, but this still won’t give the person an understanding of what green mango tastes like.

 

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