At one level meditation can be seen as a natural process – clearing away distractions in order to have a more direct access to our unconscious. At another level it can be seen as establishing a link with the Transcendent, that union with God of which both Sufis and Christians speak.
When Jesus prays of his companions ‘that they may all be one, as you, Father, and I are one – that they may be in me, and I in them, as I am in you,’ he is not speaking of a united Church but of the profound connection that one experiences through the practice of meditation. In spite of all differences, we perceive our common humanity. This is also at the heart of Buddhism: compassion for all sentient beings.
The words ‘Be still and know that I am God’ which in our meditation group we all say aloud before entering the Silence, speak of an existential experience of Something Other. Some may call this God or a Higher Power, though that is only a name. Some, like Carl Jung, may refer to it as the Self, with a capital S. It is also a realisation that the whole of creation, of which we are a part, is still unfolding. As James Dean’s character in the film Rebel Without A Cause, cries out, ‘But Mum, we are all involved!’ There is a pattern and a purpose which, occasionally, we are fortunate to glimpse. There is an intelligence behind the entire universe.