Spiritual Exercises

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Spiritual Exercises is a term used by Aldous Huxley to refer to what, in LP Nomenclature, would be a Connection Practice. According to Huxley "Spiritual exercises constitute a special class of ascetic practices, whose purpose is, primarily, to prepare the intellect and emotions for...self-exposure to the Light of the increased self-knowledge and self-loathing..." [1]

Notes

Huxley provides some examples, gleaned from a historical overview of Eastern and Western Mysticism. For example...

"The simplest and most widely practised form of spiritual exercise is repetition of the divine name, or of some phrase affirming God’s existence and the soul’s dependence upon Him." -Bayazid of Bistun
"The shaykh perceived my thoughts. ‘Abu Said,’ he said, ‘all the hundred and twenty-four thousand prophets were sent to preach one word. They bade the people say, “Allah,” and devote themselves to Him."
"In India the repetition of the divine name or the mantram (a short devotional or doctrinal affirmation) is called japam and is a favourite spiritual exercise among all the sects of Hinduism and Buddhism. The shortest mantram is OM - a spoken symbol that concentrates within itself the whole Vedanta philosophy."

In general, his survey and the advice he provides is confused and riddled with superstition and uncertainty, an attempt to approach connection and connection guidance without actually stating it in clear terms. Perhaps this is his own confusion, and perhaps it is a consequence of the spiritual ideology that suggests we should passively hope for Divine grace, not presuming to speak with authority. If you can sort through the silliness, it mostly comes down to various forms of intent, mental purification, mental control, Archetypal Cleansing, and psychological self-examination.


Footnotes

  1. Huxley. The Perennial Philosophy. Canada: Random House Canada, 2014.
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