Free «Austerity and the Pursuit of the Mystical» Essay Sample

Mysticism refers to ‘concealing’. This would be taken to mean that an individual takes an oath to keep the secret things about the church to himself. This is with an aim of pursuing a religious consciousness with God. This is a belief that is seen as a common factor in all religious groups. Austerity to mysticism would thus be viewed as an individual focusing his or her all on their pursuit to getting closer to unification with God. According to Tessons words in George Battaille’s mysticism and sensuality, to pursue the mystic connection with God, one has to be of good morality. This is because the morality of an individual determines their mystical connection with God (Battaille 227).

According to Battaile, mysticism and sensuality are two terms referring to the reasons that have led to some members of the church choosing to abstain from sexual acts. He tries to establish why they have chosen to abstain from sexual activities since they have already claimed it is not out of fear of engaging in sexual activities.



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It has been widely stated that sexuality of human beings has always been a religious act. This is because it is said to be granted by God. It is thus seen as a means of cleaning their morality so that they can achieve the connection with God. According to Battaille, we all have a common sexuality nature given by God but there also exists another mystic with God. This is because this mystic relationship with God cannot end. This is due to the fact that even if disagreements would occur between the two, nothing would break the relationship they have. This shows that they have made a decision to take this sacrifice while fully aware of their human nature and its tendencies towards sexuality (227).

The act of engaging in sexual activity has only been allowed to be a celebration of love between two people joined together in holy matrimony. Battaile claims that those practicing sexual activities in these marriages are not committing any sins. This is because it was God’s gift to those who had chosen to bond together for the rest of their lives.

The church argues that it is through ones violation that you engage in sexual activity. This is because there is a lot of earthly feelings and emotions that are involved in the sexual act. Thus the ones who choose to abstain are actually preventing themselves from being entangled in the earthly pleasures which would lead to you not getting to achieve that mystical relationship with God. This also proves that one’s morality really determines the existence of a mystic relationship with God.

It is thus clear that mysticism is unique to every individual. The reasons that may cause these individuals to choose to abstain from abstaining from sexual activity are based on ones beliefs and their sacred beliefs. We are all different and thus are our inner feelings and beliefs. Since if they have still chosen to abstain from it even though it is already blessed by God it shows that it is their inner feelings that make them see it as a wrong thing to do. One’s own perception of things is what leads you to developing certain reactions towards those things.

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There is a belief that if one commits involuntary sins then those will not be meted against you. But to these people who have chosen to lead this way of life, any sin committed even through omission remains to be a sin since it will still be meted with equal judgment as the rest. Thus these people know that even if sexual activity has been commissioned by God for those in marriages, to them it is a sin. The deeper feelings they harbor seem to be the reason that they cannot be distracted from this pursuit of their mystic relationship with God.

They also suggest that human beings have combined the biological aspect of sexual activity to translate to being religious due to the bearing of children. God created man and told him to bear children and fill the land. And thus the intentions of engaging in the sexual activities are justified as an order from God. This is not so according to the church. This is because there is a lot of emotions that will be experienced that are not in any way related to spirituality. These are only the earthly pleasures which are a sin even before God. Thus there is no excuse that would lead these people to even trying getting married as this will guarantee that they do not achieve their goal of establishing their mystical relationship with God.

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There is also a tie to death and the mystical relationship with God. Above I had discussed that the mystical relationship with God never ends despite anything that might happen. Even after death and one crosses into the afterlife their mystical relationship with God still remains. But the sexual relationships on earth end in an occasion of death. Thus with these knowledge, it would not be wise to choose this sexual relationship over the eternal relationship with God. That is because it will only have distracted you from your destiny and also because it is only a temporary relationship while on earth. Another reason might be because in the event of a disagreement, then this relationship would easily be broken due to the possibility of people choosing to stay separate from one another. The mystic relationship will thus guarantee them an everlasting presence of God in their lives.


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