On the pre-eminence of Mysticism

[300 words]

Mysticism will always be a couple of steps ahead of science.

By science, I mean natural science, but I also mean it literally: scientia means “knowing”.

This is true of any kind of knowing, really — but physics and psychology are probably the two most relevant.
(The world and the mind are, after all, the two fundamental questions.)

The reason why is this.

Understanding will always outstrip explanation / knowledge.

Let’s take human interaction as an example.

I understand how that works. But any explanation I give you will just be a reduction of that broad and vague understanding into something concrete and constrained, which I can use to communicate to someone who shares the same specific language. The language can be a useful tool to arrive at that understanding as well as to communicate it, but at the end of the day, even then it’s just a tool.

And the fact of the matter is that subconscious understanding, or non-understanding, will always outstrip conscious understanding.

I understand how human interaction works… to an extent. But no matter how much I deepen my insight into it, I still act and react in ways that outstrip my understanding.

In that way, mysticism — that which is beyond understanding — will always and inevitably be a couple steps ahead of science.

So long as the mind works anything like the way it currently works and has worked in the past, we will always “get” something intuitively more than we “get it” in a way we can explain. And, if we are capable of paying attention to it, we will see that even things which we “get” intuitively just seem to happen and unfold beyond our capacity to “get” them.

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