The Life and Understanding
Copyright 1971 By Franklin Jones
All rights reserved
Chapter 16. The Diary of My Pilgrimage
While the experiences with the Virgin and Christ were developing at the Ashram I kept a continuous diary. And I maintained the diary as we traveled to Israel, Europe, and back to the United States. I want to include the major substance of this diary here, and for this reason I did not describe my experience at the Ashram in detail in the previous chapter.
The diary is not only the best, firsthand source for these experiences, but it shows how the entire matter developed, and how I returned to a stable realization of the radical truth that is the substance of my spiritual life. Thus, it is a good introduction to the path of understanding that I will expand in later chapters, and it demonstrates how my thoughts developed out of real experience into quite another thing than the traditional forms of consciousness and seeking.
I will include that diary here, somewhat relieved of length and repetition, and without interpretation, except to indicate certain external details.
You should be prepared to read what at first appears to be the devotional diary of a mystical Catholic Christian. It is my practice to write in the mood and with the precise, unequivocal language of my experience and persuasion at any moment. And, at least for a time, it seemed to me that the revelation of the Church was the fulfilment of my life. Indeed, it was only by allowing it to be so and fully experiencing the course of this modification in my state, as well as all others at other times, that I could come eventually to perceive what is always and stably the underlying truth of all experience.
You should also recognize that this experience was a necessary one for me. It was an extension of that vision of the “Divine Lord” I had experienced the previous winter. And it drew on all the latent imagery, necessity and unfulfilled devotional energy that had been trapped in the heart since childhood. Only when these images were completely and consciously experienced, and the energy surrounding the heart utterly released from its bondage to unconscious symbols, could I remain stable in the true consciousness that is the heart of reality itself.
20 June 1970 – Ganeshpuri, India
I first was visited by Our Lady, Our Mother, in the garden of Shree Gurudev Ashram, Gavdevi-Ganeshpuri. She taught me to honor Her with a form of the prayer “Hail, Mary.” Then. She held before my mind an image of a rosary, until, after several days, I bought one in Bombay. Then she showed me Her Son, Our Lord, whose face of whitest Light has appeared directly before me in a total, mystical field of vision that, somehow, seems also. to begin at the level of the physical heart. The description of the exact position of His living face depends on whether I were to see it it relation to the body or the soul. Its brightness always faces me, and it creates the deepest peace, love and bliss in me, so that I feel as if I am nestled before it in the infinite womb of Mary, Whose body seems to contain the soul.
After this revelation, She moved me to read as many books on the Faith as were available to me in my retreat. And, as I grew in knowledge, She instructed me by motivating me to write and become conscious of Her impulses in me. Thus She has brought me to Christ and revealed to me the truth of all that I have undergone in the past many years.
I already feel a suggestion to bury the rosary somewhere in the garden before I leave, so that She has a witness here. She may not require this of me, but instruct me instead to keep it for devotions. I am awed with the absolute Truth of the Church, and how it escaped me all my life. Since this revelation, there has also been a continuous, deep ecstasy and joy in my heart that is so great I dare not even, allow myself to be fully conscious of it, or to experience and manifest it completely.
All paths and practices point to a goal that is either symbolic or transcendent, a state of mind or psyche or soul. These goals are intuited by spiritual experiment, the research of seekers, without benefit of the directly and priorly revealed Divine Presence. What lies beneath all of these coals as their latent, unconscious object or source is Christ. For, all of these goals would already be fully attained if Christ were consciously received on every level of our being. His fulness precludes the great search. It epitomizes and fills each level of our being. And His Presence, from the moment it is known in faith, raises us into the ever more rill realization of that fulness. He is the Source and Object of every spiritual state, to the hidden Truth of which even the earth itself and every miraculous power are only symbols.
The transmitted gospel creates many historical problems in relation to texts, specific interpretations, traditions, etc. This is simply by virtue of the fact that it is a communication through men in the world over time. But, through this gospel, the Form of Reality, which is latent in all things, is communicated, so that the recognition of it draws us into a relationship to things that precludes all seeking and makes possible the victory over life. No other transmission of truth on earth has the effect of this gospel, for all others draw men into the distractions of the great search. The Lord and Reality of this Gospel stands eternally before us and is continually at work to save us. The Gospel immediately puts us in contact with Him. Thus, the Gospel is not mere language and symbols, but the unique tool and communication of Reality. The Living Lord, the Gospel, and the Church are *present, with His Holy bother, to transform all the world by restoring it to the Form of Reality, which is not “natural” or philosophically realizable, but is the knowledge of the Self-Revealed Lord.
I say that form is latent all things only because it is heir only true structure, even though realizable only by Revelation. And that Revelation must become conscious in some direct way in order to be realized. The Form of Reality is consciousness or awareness of the revealed Lord, the Present God. Thus, nothing exists in the fulness of its created state until it receives Him.
Texts that seem peculiarly important to me:
He that seeth me seeth the Father also. (John 14:9) That I may know him and the power of his resurrection.