Paul Brunton Philosophic Foundation homepage > Notebooks of Paul Brunton

Scott in his search for the South Pole amid ice-bound Antarctic wastes and Smythe in his quest for the summit of Mount Everest amid terrible avalanches of stone and snow, reported in their written accounts the sense of not being alone, of being companioned by a mystic unseen presence which bestowed a strange calm. Scott's venture ended in heroic death whereas Smythe survived to enjoy the warmth and safety of his home. Both however knew what it was to be uncommonly blessed at the time, for Scott passed to his fated death with an utter serenity and an inward trust in its aftermath which took all the horror out of it for him. This noble passage to another stage of existence was not the miserable calamity which it was for many other men. What was the mystic presence which walked beside these men? Each may have had his own belief about it, may have constructed in imagination what his previous knowledge experience tendencies and outlook may have naturally persuaded him to construct. Each therefore may have had different ideas about it, but this would not affect the actual power which inspired and animated him at the time. For that power was nothing less than the Grace of the Overself, and if we understand the psychological secret of what happened to Scott and Smythe we may then understand that it is not only far-wandering explorers and high-climbing mountaineers who may call up the Overself by their brave trust. The same dangerous experience which has brought fear, horror, and despair to other men brought them dignified confidence and mystical enlargement of consciousness which made them aware for the time of the hidden observer. They had indeed suddenly but partially stepped into the transcendental state. Whoever successfully practises the Hidden Observer meditation will experience precisely the same sense of not being alone, of being companioned by a mystic presence which brings with it a benign sense of assurance and security. He will, however, experience much more than that.

-- Notebooks Category 23: Advanced Contemplation > Chapter 6: Advanced Meditation > # 86

The Notebooks are copyright © 1984-1989, The Paul Brunton Philosophic Foundation.