purposeful marvels

Take a moment to appreciate the incredible design of a bird’s feather. It’s not just a fluffy adornment; it’s a marvel of engineering. Each feather is meticulously constructed with intricate barbs and barbules, carefully arranged to provide insulation, aerodynamics, and camouflage. The precision and functionality of this design leave us in awe, reminding us that every aspect of nature is crafted with a profound purpose.

Have you ever gazed upon a stunning work of art and felt a sense of awe wash over you? That overwhelming feeling of appreciation for the intricate details, the purposeful strokes, and the profound depth of meaning – it’s a testament to the brilliance of the creator’s vision. Well, have you thought before, the natural world around us is a masterpiece that far surpasses any human-made artwork.

Take a moment to appreciate the incredible design of a bird’s feather. It’s not just a fluffy adornment; it’s a marvel of engineering. Each feather is meticulously constructed with intricate barbs and barbules, carefully arranged to provide insulation, aerodynamics, and camouflage. The precision and functionality of this design leave us in awe, reminding us that every aspect of nature is crafted with a profound purpose.

Or consider the remarkable sonar system of the humble bat. These tiny creatures navigate the darkness with ease, effortlessly avoiding obstacles and locating their prey by emitting high-pitched sounds and interpreting the echoes. It’s a sophisticated system that has inspired human technologies like radar and ultrasound imaging, a testament to the ingenuity inherent in nature’s designs.

But the wonders don’t stop there. Look closely at the delicate wing structure of a fly, and you’ll discover a marvel of engineering that allows these tiny creatures to perform incredible aerial maneuvers. The intricate network of veins and membranes, perfectly balanced and synchronized, enables the fly to defy the laws of physics with its agility and precision. As you ponder these marvels, can you truly attribute them to mere chance or random occurrences? Just as a masterpiece demands the acknowledgment of an artist’s vision, the intricate designs we witness in nature leads us to recognize the handiwork of a supreme being – an intelligence far beyond our comprehension.

deeper signatures

Look around you. The world we inhabit is filled with wonders, each note carefully crafted with a purpose and a grand design. From the tiniest insect to the vast expanse of the cosmos, every aspect of our existence whispers a profound truth – the unmistakable presence of a supreme intelligence. Let’s start with something as seemingly ordinary as a butterfly. Those vibrant wings are more than just a colorful delight; they are a masterclass in engineering. The intricate patterns and scales are precisely arranged to manipulate light, allowing the butterfly to camouflage itself or attract mates. It’s a brilliant strategy woven into the very fabric of its being. Now, consider your own body, a marvel that continues to astound even the greatest minds. The human eye, for instance, is an engineering feat that defies simplistic explanations. The cornea, lens, retina, and optic nerve work in perfect harmony, enabling the complex process of vision. Remove or impair just one component, and the entire system fails. That level of interdependence screams a purposeful design. But the wonders don’t stop there. Take a moment to appreciate the plants around you. Those silent sentinels possess an intricate network of roots and branches, each strand playing a vital role in transporting nutrients and water. It’s a sophisticated system that sustains life itself. And what about the very air we breathe? It’s not just a random mixture of gases; it’s a delicate balance, part of an intricate cycle that keeps our planet’s ecosystems thriving. Just as a magnificent building demands the acknowledgment of an architect, the awe-inspiring complexity of the natural world compels us to recognize the handiwork of a supreme being far beyond our comprehension. The aspects that I mentioned are signatures for pondering. There are signs in them for those who use their intellects.

the illusory nature of perception: senses can be deceiving

This note contains a very important concept that has had a profound impact on my outlook on life and I have been thinking a lot over writing this important theme to add to our Ponder series. This is a very important concept that can shake up your consensus and is a very important secret of the true nature of our life in this world. I would recommend paying very close attention to these notes and read it very attentively and carefully thinking about it and slowly pondering on it to make the most benefit of them. I am hoping that this is conveyed well. And to note in particular, this is not a philosophical opinion, it’s the latest bleeding edge scientific consensus as well. Thank you so much for your glance and I truly hope that this touches you in some way.

We all have a basic, intuitive understanding of how our senses work. From a very young age, we are taught that we see the world with our eyes, hear sounds with our ears, feel textures and temperatures with our skin. Through these sensory modalities, we build up our perceptions of an external reality existing independently of ourselves. We grow accustomed to the idea that our senses provide us a window into the real, objective world around us.

But is this really the case? When we take a closer look at the scientific findings regarding perception and neuroscience, a very different picture emerges – one that calls into question the reliability of our senses and the nature of reality they purport to reveal. As it turns out, the relationship between our perceptions and the world we think we are perceiving is far more complex than our intuitive assumptions would suggest. In truth, our senses present more of an illusion than a direct experience of objective reality.

Let’s explore this concept in more detail. The starting point is that our senses do not actually perceive the external world in its original, unmodified form. Rather, specific physical stimuli – like light, sound waves, molecular odorants and flavor compounds – enter our sensory organs like the eyes, ears, nose and tongue. But these stimuli are not transmitted directly to the brain in their original state. Instead, they are transformed. Light is converted into electrochemical signals by photoreceptor cells in the retina. Sound waves cause mechanosensitive hair cells in the cochlea to fire action potentials. Volatile molecules bind to olfactory receptors, initiating intracellular signaling cascades.

This initial transduction is just the beginning. The sensory signals then travel via neural pathways to specialized processing centers located deep within the brain. It is here, in areas such as the primary visual cortex or auditory cortex, where the raw sensory input gets fully reconstructed and interpreted. Complex neural computations synthesize tactile textures, object contours, melodic patterns, harmonies and more – all from the basic stimulus encodings. Only after this extended transformation do we begin to experience sights, sounds, smells and other qualitative sensations.

Let’s deeply think about the act of seeing. The process of seeing is quite remarkable when explored further. When light from an object, such as the flame within a glass lamp, enters our eye, it first passes through the outer lens. This lens bends and focuses the light rays, making them converge on the retina at the back of the eye. Here, specialized light-sensitive cells called photoreceptors convert the patterns of light energy into electrical nerve signals. These signals then travel through the optic nerve into the brain. It’s at this point where things become truly fascinating.

You see, the place where these signals are finally decoded into the experience of vision is located deep in the brain, within an area called the visual cortex. Despite being positioned at the very back of the cranium, this tiny region – only a few cubic centimeters in size – is where sight truly happens. All the complex imagery we perceive, from books to breathtaking landscapes, is reconstructed within this small zone based on the neurological impulses sent from the eyes. What’s more, the visual cortex is encased in neural tissue, completely isolating it from any external light. So while we may view a flickering flame through a glass lamp, the process of sight takes place entirely in the brain which is pitch dark. Our brain constructs vibrant scenes of color and illumination behind perceptions, yet the organ doing the perceiving lives in perpetual darkness. Though a mundane act, seeing reveals the marvelous creativity in our inner vision – we watch light and scenes with eyes that have never directly witnessed either. It is a curious paradox that illuminates how much is hidden behind even our most familiar senses. Think about it. Have you thought about this before?

Now, all other senses like smell and taste also work in the same manner.

The sense of smell works through a process just as fascinating as sight, if not more so. Consider a boy bent over a colorful rose bush, breathing in the sweet fragrance. On a molecular level, delicate scent compounds are evaporating off the flowers’ petals and making their way to his nose.

There, specialized receptor cells located within tiny hairs in the nasal epithelium await contact. When the airborne odor molecules dock with these receptors, they initiate a complex signaling cascade. Impulses are then transmitted through the olfactory nerve deep into the brain – particularly two small processing areas called the olfactory bulbs and olfactory cortex. It is within this dark, inward space that smell truly emerges. The boy’s experience of the rose’s perfume exists solely as patterns of neural activation, reconstructed from the basic molecular registration at the periphery. Quite remarkably, the scent-producing molecules themselves never internally penetrate past the nose – all that travels inward are electrochemical representations. So while the boy inhales nature’s fragrance with evident enjoyment, the true nature of that outside stimulus remains quite veiled. His perception of the rose is fabricated within his mind, through processes that convert sensory essence into an internal experience we term “smell.” All the scents he knows, be they pleasant or foul, inhabit only his brain – their outer reality remaining obscure and unknowable.

The sense of taste functions in an analogous way. Located on the tongue are different types of chemical receptors tuned to detect saltiness, sweetness, sourness and bitterness.

When foods or beverages make contact, these receptors transduce the perceptual qualities into neuronal signals. The experience of flavor truly emerges further inland, after transmission via the cranial nerves to destinations like the gustatory cortex. Here, our impression of a chocolate bar’s richness or a fruit’s natural sweetness arises solely as reformatted electrochemical activity. Remarkably, we never literally taste the food item itself – only our brain’s reconstruction from limited data. If these gustatory pathways were severed, as in nerve damage, one could place anything in the mouth yet experience no sensory experience of flavor whatsoever. Further, there is no guarantee that what one perceives as “tasting chocolate” is equivalent to another’s perception of the same substance. Fundamentally, taste remains a solitary phenomenon – even when experiencing so-called external qualities, each is confined to their own subjective reconstruction alone.

In other words, what we perceive through our senses bears no true resemblance to the physical stimuli themselves or the events occurring in the external world. Our perceptions are fabricated worlds consciously experienced solely within the confines of our brains, despite the intuitive illusion that they correspond to reality. We never directly experience objective qualities “out there” – only our brain’s best guess reconstruction and interpretation of limited sensory data. Even qualities like color that seem intrinsic to objects are mere neural constructions, as evidenced by cases of color blindness.

You think reality is what your hands can touch and your eyes can see. But in dreams as well, you can see with your eyes and touch with your hands. The important thing though, is that in dreams your real hands and eyes aren’t doing anything – it’s all happening in your brain.
Your dreams make you feel like you’re living in a real world, but there’s nothing real about the dream world except what’s in your head. This should make you realize something – your real world might not be real either! When you’re awake, your brain is just making you think this life is real, like how it makes dreams feel real while you’re sleeping.
The only difference between dreams and real life is that real life feels more solid because that’s what we’re used to because of our habits. But when you think about it, there’s no logical reason the world has to keep going when you wake up compared to a dream ending. Your brain could just be keeping you stuck in a really long dream the whole time! So maybe one day you’ll “wake up” from earth like you wake from a normal dream. It’s all happening inside your head either way.

The implications of this insight are profound. We are confined within and defined by our brain’s internally generated models, unaware of any reality that may lie beyond them. No matter how vivid or high-definition our sensations feel, they remain clever illusions – adaptive representations but not direct contact with absolutes. Our perceptions do not so much reveal reality as construct it.

This interpretation is further supported by neurological experiments demonstrating that sensory pathways are bi-directional and context-dependent. Stimulating or inhibiting different brain regions can respectively generate pseudoperceptions in the absence of stimuli or entirely block real stimuli from consciousness as per latest studies. If perceptions were hard-wired reflections of an objective world, these manipulations should not alter experience so radically. The malleability of perception undermines any claim of veridical correspondence with external facts.

Perhaps most remarkably, even our basic sense of self, our physical body and surroundings arise as byproducts of neural interpretation rather than direct acquaintance. Our perception of the physical body, the boundaries between self and other, and the space immediately around us – all of these depend on a continuously updated model constructed within the brain while insulating us from direct access to whatever exists beyond. We live fully immersed within the virtual reality generated by our own neurobiology, unaware of any external reality outside this domain of representation.

In the end, all that can be said with certainty based on scientific evidence is that our perceptions arise from elaborate neural computations performed on streams of coded sensory input. Any external actualities those inputs might correspond to remain forever hidden from our direct experience due to the filtering and modeling functions of the brain. At best, our senses provide us adaptive illusions – but they cannot be taken at face value as transparent windows onto objective truth.

This insight leaves modern people in a strange position. We have developed complex cultures, societies and technologies based on the intuitive but ultimately illusory insights granted by our perceptions. Yet we now understand on a deeper level that the world we perceive and interact with daily is a constructed simulation, not reality as it exists independently of conscious experience. How we reconcile this novel understanding with our more primitive, intuition-based relationship to the world remains an open philosophical question. Though perception deceives, perhaps through open-minded scientific inquiry we can catch glimpses of greater truths beyond the veil of illusion.

The Illusory Self

If our perceptions do not provide veridical access to an independent external world, then what can be said about our own nature and existence? Science tells us that the brain, like all other objects we are aware of, is merely complex assemblage of basic physical components following deterministic rules. Within the brain tissue there is nothing but proteins, lipids and the electrochemical interactions between them – no immaterial soul or essence.

But then who or what is experiencing this virtual world of perception? Who is perceiving the sensations, images, thoughts and emotions arising moment to moment? We intuitively feel ourselves to be autonomous, volitional agents behind our experiences. Yet upon deeper analysis, the very notion of an independent self breaks down. Just as perceptions do not reside “out there” but are synthesised within, so too the sense of an enduring self is a fabrication of neural architecture rather than any direct acquaintance with an immutable inner essence.

Perhaps we are nothing but transient patterns of neuronal activation, momentary crystallizations of complex information flow without any permanent substratum. If even our own existence is an illusion constructed by the virtual reality simulator between our ears, then to what do we truly have access? All signs point to a supremely masterful Creator behind this extraordinarily rich simulation – an intelligent designer whose power transcends everything we can conceive based on our narrowed, model-dependent experience of existence.

Glimpses of the Absolute

Faced with incontrovertible evidence that our perceptions do not reflect any objective external reality or inner essence, one is left wondering what is the essence of existence beyond this veil of neural representation. If all is illusion, then what explains the profound ordered complexity, information and even purposeful design apparent across all scales of nature?

Reason demands there must be some Real, independent of all conceptual frameworks, which grounds this whole cosmic drama of contingent being. science and philosophy alike point to the signature of an ultimate intelligent source , an all powerful Almighty Creator behind the exquisitely detailed simulation we find ourselves immersed within. Though unseen by any faculty, the signs of suprarational creativity are everywhere evident.

Perhaps through disciplined philosophical-scientific inquiry, combining both empirical rigor and intuitive glimpses, we can catch fleeting visions of that transcendent creative authority which animates all of nature’s splendors. The insights provided by neuroscience may instead guide us to a profounder mystical appreciation of existence’s deeper purpose and meaning beyond what our senses perceive. Thanks for taking time to read this long post completely and I value and appreciate your glance a lot.

There are many scientific publications that have covered themes like this.

notes for resilience and hope during anxiety

I’m thankful for your glance at my writings. Always, I want to be some sort of hope that you can look up to. I thought of writing about this upon reading quite a bit about the ramping prevalence of anxiety among many young people. Everyone, me, you at some point would have experienced some level of anxiety. I’m hoping that these notes would enhance your perspective to face it better. Anxiety can be described as a feeling of dread, unease, or apprehension associated with a threat that is not present in the current moment. This emotion is likely familiar to many, as it often underpins our interest in productivity methods and personal growth. Anxiety is characterized by the fear that something very negative might occur, despite the lack of concrete evidence to support this belief. This paradox is worth exploring, as living with constant anxiety is not a healthy way to experience life.

One approach to managing anxiety involves envisioning the genuine worst-case scenario in any given situation in detail. For instance, if you are anxious about attending a job interview, imagine the experience of stumbling through your responses, feeling embarrassed, and not getting the job offer. While this scenario is undoubtedly uncomfortable, it is also manageable. This exercise helps to reduce anxiety by addressing the fear of a danger with which you couldn’t cope. However, this method has its limitations, as it may imply that nothing catastrophically bad could ever truly happen, whereas the anxious person knows, deep down, that it could.

Anxiety is not an irrational reaction to how bad things could get; it is a logical response to the human condition. We are thrown into the stream of time, unable to know or control what’s coming, yet expected to build a meaningful and fulfilling life despite our total vulnerability to events. This understanding is part of what makes anxiety an inherent part of the human experience.

In this predicament, the deepest comfort cannot be found in compulsive planning or visualizing worst-case scenarios. Instead, it comes from acknowledging that there is nothing you could ever do to change this state of affairs, so you might as well relax into it if you can. It also helps to recognize that everyone is in the same situation, so you need not worry that others are more in control of their lives than you are.

Another source of comfort and strength can be found in the concept of divine timing. Trusting that events will unfold as they are meant to, even when they seem out of our control, can help alleviate anxiety. By surrendering to the natural flow of life and believing in the will of Almighty without feeling resistance over it through efforts on deepening faith, we can find solace and resilience in the face of uncertainty.

the boundless mind

Our minds seem limitless, capable of fathoming concepts far beyond what our physical senses allow. Yet for all its vastness, the mind resides within intricate boundaries not of its own making. Both mind and body are shaped by forces beyond our control or comprehension.

Consider the eye, doorway to the wonders and workings of the world. Through its structures – lens gathering light, retina receiving images – we peer out yet are kept protected within. Each component must fulfill its role without flaw, or the window closes. So too with other organs and systems keeping body and soul integrated, coordinated in hidden harmony.

The very faculties that allow us to perceive and comprehend our world did not originate from our own efforts but were endowed to us. How then did beings come to have such gifts as sight, hearing and thought? Not by any action or ability of their own, for these capacities preceded our existence and possession of them. Just as a builder uses tools they did not invent but are given for their work, so too were we provided with the means of awareness and reason by some Higher Intelligence that destined us with such marvels.

This Designer shows skill far beyond any earthly architect or engineer. Not just in crafting component parts but integrating them through laws and forces governing all creation. The balance upholding life itself on our inhabitable world emerges not by happenstance but intention. From microbes to stars, all obey harmonies revealing a Supreme Artisan.

Before this Creator we stand not as masters but subjects of realms beyond grasp. Yet glimpses may be found by those with eyes to see. In moments when the mind transcends bounds of self, when we feel awe before grandeur in the sky or sea, whispers of transcendence stir our souls. And in acts of goodness flowing not from selfish impulse but other-centered care, we see reflections of our true nature and purpose.

Rather than deny the Boundless One whose gifts allow our bounded minds, wisdom lies in acknowledging the Source. In surrendering self-will and aligning with universal truths of love, mercy and justice, inner peace may be found. The Great Artisan envisions far vaster designs than our small lives; in surrendering to creative currents beyond control, we find our purpose and place within the endless whole.

age’s quiet wisdom

In the soft light of dawn, as the world awakens from its slumber, so too does the human soul stir with a poignant realization. Each morning, as we confront the mirror, it reflects not just our physical form but a deeper, more profound truth. The act of cleansing our face, the routine of brushing our teeth, these are not mere habits; they are silent sermons on the fragility of our human existence.

Behold, the thin veil of skin that encases us, how delicate and vulnerable it is! This body of ours, a marvel of creation, is yet so susceptible to the wear and tear of time. Our need for sustenance, our battle against sleeplessness, hunger, and thirst – these are not mere physiological demands. They are, in essence, subtle reminders of our inherent weakness, signs from the Divine that our earthly existence is but temporary.

As we age, each wrinkle that etches itself onto our face is like a gentle whisper from the Almighty, reminding us of the fleeting nature of worldly life. The whitening of hair, the aging of hands – these are not mere signs of physical decline but are profound symbols of the inexorable passage of time, a time that draws us closer to our return from this temporal world.

But amidst this temporal decay, there lies an immutable truth – the soul does not age. While our bodies are bound to the relentless march of time, our souls remain untouched, timeless in their essence. The beauty and vigor of youth may fade, but the radiance of the soul only intensifies with the wisdom and experience that comes with age.

In this transient world, where outward appearances often hold sway, aging serves as a potent reminder of the impermanence of physical beauty. It invites us to look beyond the superficial, to recognize the enduring beauty of the soul that outlasts the decaying shell of the body.

Thus, as we greet each day, let us embrace our vulnerabilities, not as signs of weakness but as divine messages guiding us towards a deeper understanding of our true purpose. Let us cherish the aging process, not as a decline but as a journey towards spiritual maturity, a journey that brings us closer to the divine.

mortal mettle

Like a shipwrecked vessel adrift at sea, our earthly lives are but a fleeting voyage. As transient travelers treading the sands of time, we journey together under endless skies, our footprints traced temporarily along the shores of eternity. Though our mortal shells erode, our spirits sail on. (Photographed and styled by The Border of a Mind Studios from a beach in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates)

We all try to avoid thinking about it, but death comes for us all eventually. Though it makes us uncomfortable, reflecting on our mortality can inspire us to live more purposefully. When the clock of life stops ticking, fret not about the lifeless body you leave behind. Your loved ones will take good care of it—they’ll dress you up nicely in a white shroud before sending you off on your final journey.

Many will come to see you off – some taking time off work, others rearranging plans. They’ll stand around chatting like at a high school reunion before you set off on your last journey.

Your possessions – that Ukulele lying around you never learned to play, the fancy plates at home you never used, the clothes that hung unworn in your closet – they’ll all be passed on, sold off, or tossed out quicker than last night’s leftovers. The details of your material life will go on without you.

At the office, they’ll have your replacement before your obituary hits the papers. Your workload will be passed on seamlessly like a baton in a relay race.

Your finances and assets will go to your next of kin. Don’t be surprised if you continue to be analyzed and criticized even in death – people always have opinions, after all.

True friends will mourn you for a time, shedding tears over memories you made together. But the river of life keeps flowing, and they’ll soon be back to their routines. As for fairweather friends, they’ll forget you faster than a fleeting TikTok trend.

Your pets might tilt their heads confused, wondering where you went, but they’ll bond with their new owners soon enough. Loyalty has its limits.

Your smiling face in those photos on the mantle will gather dust, gradually relegated to boxes in the attic to fade from memory.

Your home will echo with emptiness for a while, but will soon be filled with the noise of someone else living your life.

In time, the pain will subside, the calls will taper off, and you’ll become just another name etched into stone, a distant memory.

For you, though, the real adventure is just beginning. A new phase of existence where worldly possessions and status symbols are meaningless. Where you take only what you gave – your compassion, wisdom, and light.

While you glance at these writings, let us remind each other to live and love fully now. Build spiritual wealth by touching lives. That’s the only currency that lasts. Make your mark on this world, because your chance is finite. But your soul is infinite.

effortless freedom

“When I run after what I think I want, my days are a furnace of stress and anxiety; if I sit in my own place of patience, what I need flows to me, and without pain. From this I understand that what I want also wants me, is looking for me and attracting me. There is a great secret here for anyone who can grasp it.”

— Lines from a Persian poet

Somewhere in Zanzibar

The ceaseless chase for desire breeds unrest within the soul. In feverish pursuit of that which we believe will bring contentment, our days become consumed in the flames of stress and worry. However, by rooting oneself in the soil of patience, life’s nourishment flows gently to us without the sting of suffering.

This reveals a profound truth – that our yearnings seek us as much as we seek them. Our deepest longings are magnetized to our innermost being. For those able to embrace this revelation, a great secret unfolds: If we allow our branches to stretch toward the sunlight of the spirit, life’s richest fruits will blossom within our reach.

By sinking roots into the stillness of the present, we draw forth the fullness we already contain within. Let the waters of tranquility flow through you, nourishing blossoms of wisdom. All that you need lies dormant in the seed of your soul. By flowering into your true nature, life’s abundance shall be yours.

transcendent truth

transcendent truth | original fine art from The Border Of a Mind Studios

Once upon a time, in a far-off land, there lived a young man named Emaan. He was a seeker of truth, and had devoted his life to the path of knowledge. He was filled with a deep longing to understand the mysteries of the universe and the secrets of the divine.

One day, Emaan found himself in the midst of a great crisis. All of the doors that had once been open to him seemed to have closed, and he found himself wandering aimlessly through the desert of despair. He felt as though he had lost his way and that he would never find his way back to the light.

But as he stumbled through the sands of his sorrow, he remembered the wise words of his spiritual guide: “Ponder upon the vicissitudes of life, I implore you to abstain from venturing into the vicinity of despondency and despair. Despite the apparent obfuscation of all avenues, the divine shall unveil a novel trajectory solely for you.

With these words in mind, Emaan decided to focus on gratitude. He was thankful for the blessings that had been bestowed upon him, but also for that which had been withheld. He understood that there was a reason for everything, and that even the darkest moments of his life had a purpose.

As he walked through the desert, he began to notice the beauty of the world around him. The stars shone brightly in the sky, and the sand sparkled in the moonlight. He realized that the desert was not a place of despair, but of wonder and wonderment. And in that moment, Emaan knew that he was exactly where he needed to be.

And so, he continued his journey with a newfound appreciation for life and its many twists and turns. He knew that the divine had a plan for him, and that all of his struggles were leading him to a greater understanding.

Although this story is of Emaan, this is also of me, of you

Whatever happens, never fall into despair. Think about the brighter and positive sides of events in your life and what you can do positively in this moment to move forward. This would make significant changes in our lives. Despair is the keyway to laziness and inconsistency. A giant leap of faith is required and it’s built on the process. God bless you, and thank you very much for the time you’ve taken to read this. My only wish is to stir your soul towards a positive frame of mind regardless of whatever you’re going through.

elusive knowledge

that which is most valuable is often the most elusive.

As I delved into the writings of a theologian from the 8th century , I stumbled upon a passage that struck a chord within me. The author, whose work can be loosely translated as “Contemplations and Reflections on the Deeper Meaning of Prayer,” (Since the work is not in english) posits that the plans of the divine and deeper spiritual knowledge are akin to precious treasures, buried deep and obscured from those who do not actively seek them out. This analogy extends to the fruits of the earth as well, for they too are not immediately apparent, but require peeling away layers to reveal their sweetness. Some of the sweetest fruits are not the easiest ones to grow or has the hardest shells. This, the author asserts, is an immutable principle: that which is most valuable is often the most elusive.

This, I believe, holds true for spiritual knowledge as well. To attain a deeper understanding of the divine, one must engage in a process of laborious exploration and comprehension. Such knowledge is not imparted easily to the indolent (lazy) or impetuous (hasty) souls. It accrues over time, through the application of both mental exertion and patience. It grows with time, comprehension and hard work.

The same can be said of prayer. To experience it in its fullest, one must make a concerted effort to delve deeper, approaching it with a sense of incremental progression and unwavering commitment. To reach the most profound understanding, it is necessary to take it slowly, gradually and incrementally, breaking through screens and levels, struggling to understand and remaining loyal to the knowledge. It is only through this process that the knowledge will start to yield to you.

A fortress of protection is built around you, fending off distractions of the mind, as you strive to understand the deeper meaning of prayer. It is in this journey, this struggle, that we find true understanding and enlightenment.