Liberation begins in the mind of the individual. The mind is both the Great Cage and the Great Space, tightly constraining or limitless—as we decide.
How we define liberation can and must change over time, so I won’t spend much energy on it here. Suffice to say, for now, that liberation expresses itself as three virtues: Peace, Freedom, and Happiness. How these three arise, and what we may do to open ourselves up to them, is the subject of this series.
Psychology is, as we all know, the study of the workings or “logic” of the mind. But the circularity of the mind studying the mind is, at some level, unsatisfactory.
In contrast, through gnostic practices, we attain to layers of experience which transcend the limits of any common notion of mind, entering the realm of the spiritual. Much as the seeming ontological divide between Divinity and matter gives rise to the ultimately contingent but relatively useful field of metaphysics (intended in its esoteric, and not its merely philosophical, phase), so does the apparent phenomenological gap allow for a metapsychology.
Neither authentic metaphysics nor inwardly-derived metapsychology are intended to be perfect models of “what is”, but as conceptual handholds which allow us to think and communicate about the Goal and the route to it. If the mind studying the mind is useful but faulty, metapsychology allows us to translate something of a “higher” or “deeper” experience into language.
This process can never be perfect. To seek perfect expression of what lies beyond, yet encompasses and expresses itself as, the mind is dangerous folly—less Lucifer and more Icarus, not merely arrogant but witless and trivial to boot.
So long as we know this, however, the attempt at a more useful communication of such things is valuable in the same way that the study of Scripture is valuable. We seek not merely a social language but a sacerdotal one. As such, we call this “a” metapsychology because no metapsychology can be complete just as no metaphysic can be perfect.
Contradictions must appear, though that does not always imply a lack of consistency; expressions such as these are the proverbial finger pointing to the Moon, and getting caught by apparent contradictions instead of using the different models to triangulate the destination is just staring at a finger instead of what it indicates.
This series will explore such metapsychology not in order to exhaust its heights and depths but in order to give an expanding series of aids in the form of observations along the way. Peace, Freedom, and Happiness are not to be found as passive personality quirks (however charming as accidents) but as active Force, manifestations in the substance of mind of the Divine Power which we will be forgiven for calling Grace. Yet from our own efforts depend the degree to which this Power lights up our interiors and shines out into the world and our experience of it.
As Frithjof Schuon puts it, there can never be too many keys to unlocking the One Needful Thing.