The “Awakening,” The End of all Religion – Franklin Merrell-Wolff

The real end of all the higher religion and philosophy is the attainment of the Awakened Consciousness. Call It what you will, Cosmic Consciousness, Specialism Liberation, Nirvana, Enlightenment, the Kingdom of Heaven, Moksha, Transcendentalism, Christ Consciousness, Seraphita, Beatrice, or any other name, these all point to one and the same fact, be it well or poorly understood. From one point of view, It may be regarded as the Awakening of a new Sense but, if so, the difference is at least as radical as the shift from sensation to conceptual thought. The change is so great as to form an entirely new Man within the frame of the old. He may apparently still live here, yet in the essential sense He is not here. For Him the great and baffling questions of reflective cosciousness are solved; the problems that underlie the great antinomies are resolved. His deep soul-yearning is satisfied, and the tragedy which dogs the steps of this life here below is gone forever. With the Awakening, the end of religion is attained. The man, at last, is born again, and a new “Twice-born” steps into a New World.

The Awakening is a Death and a Birth. Then Real Life for the tired man begins. And what is that Life like? No words can really convey It as It is. Art in language, or in other forms, conveys adumbrations, but these are easily minunderstood and have often been grossly misinterpreted. There is but one way to Know and that is by Awakening. We report the Glory, the Joy, the Freedom, and some of the wonderful possibilities. We demonstrate, from time to time, the Powers beyond the command of the merely egoistic consciousness. All These are signs of the Beyond. We give testimony as to what We have found and move for seasons among men, awakening foretastes here and there, both when the latter are in ordinary waking consciousness and when asleep. But We cannot carry to the egoistic consciousness this other Reality. Man must Awake to Know and thus to solve his really great problems. Without Awakening, there is no solution of these problems. Brother fights brother for the crumbs that have fallen from the Feast, seeing not enough for all. Yet, if but for a single moment, man would look up, he would see on the Table an endless supply, a limitless abundance for all.

So We are not much concerned with vain social plans and programs, with the changes of governments and economic reforms, for We Know that all organizations, all institutions, all systems are sterile if they do not incarnate the Light. We use all possible means to bring that Light nearer and to arouse in men the desire for It. But We cannot do that part which each individual man must do. We urge him to turn his back upon the trivial pleasures, combined with real bondage, so that he may Know a real enduring Joy and may live a Life that is full. The Crossing to the Promised Land has its difficulties, but these are small beside the new Values that There will be Realized. Arise, men, and come into your ancient Inheritance! All old pleasures and activities have their higher correspondences in that Beyond, but with a inconceivably greater richness of Value.

-Franklin Merrell-Wolff

from Experience and Philosophy. SUNY Press.

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