Something comes in the darkness and opens.
It doesn't have a name; I've never seen it before – I will never see it, it can only be sensed and felt and touched. It isn't me; it isn't mine. Yet it is of inestimable glory, and it speaks — in its own voice — without any words, about the fundamental nature of things.
I wake up very early this morning. This question, this experience, on my mind and in my body, as it always is when these things happen.
What is Will? Why should we develop it? Whose will are we concerned with? These are the questions that concern me this morning.
Yogis talk about developing Will — The whole practice of Hatha yoga is, in fact, about this. In this question, there is a presumption of power — that somehow, if I have real Will, I will have power.
But what kind of power? And power for what?
Is it power to get to God, to attain the gates of Heaven? Do I have that power? Could I have such power at all?
Every conception I have of Will is my own conception. If I imagine myself having Will, it is my own Will. It belongs to me. I imagine I will do something with it — attain that enlightenment I want, or some such thing.
Yet everything in me that is attached to this is part of the problem. All of my will comes from this level; all of it belongs to this level. And if there is any Will at all that needs to be expressed or obtained, it is the influence of a Will from a higher level. Nothing could be more explicit than Christ's words: "Thy will be done." And yet this is exactly what I don't actually want, and don't understand. Do I see how everything I do is driven by my own will? I don't understand this. Even my wish to surrender to a higher influence comes from my own will.
Only when something other than my own Will arrives do I begin to understand how inadequate I am.
The expression of a different Will from a higher level comes in the darkness and opens. It doesn't have a name; yet, when I encounter it, I am of this level, and I name it. I am a man with a charcoal pencil drawing a tiny sketch of something enormous, equipped with rudimentary tools that can say very little. But I do try, and so I name it.
It is Authority; and it does not belong to me.
It has nothing to do with me. It arrives as a gift and forms something new in me; yet even that still isn't mine. It is precious, and it seems eternal; at any rate, it does to me, with what little I know of eternity, just a concept I have formed in my mind. It comes from everywhere; it touches everything. It has a comprehension, and a quieting stillness, which exceeds anything I can ever know.
This Authority is original. It arrives clothed in Grace; it has qualities I strive for, but never seem to reach, because they cannot belong to me. Again, the dilemma of Will; everything I presume to have or be able to have, I think I can get for myself.
Yet the only truly precious thing is this Authority, not my own authority; and I can't invoke it. Either it comes, or it doesn't; either way, it moves according to its own Will, not mine.
Moments like this leave me with the impression that I don't understand much of anything about this question. I use the word Will as though I understand what it is, what I am asking for, what I can get or what I can do with it.
Yet when anything that touches this question of real Will arrives, I see that my own meanings are empty.