Interchange As A Way of Life

 Interchange As A Way of Life

 Interchange As A Way of Life


Prerequisiste Essays

Preparatory Study

Introductory Study

      Dialectical interchange can become a continuous way of life: an ongoing dialogue with enlightened humans and Higher Being for the purpose of understanding and emulating the Divine Operation and Will for ourselves and the entire realm of being.

"If we never ceased to live the life of faith, our intercourse with God would never be interrupted and we should talk with him face to face."

Jean-Pierre de Caussade (1675-1751), Abandonment to Divine Providence

      We want to gain proficiency in all modes of dialectical interchange. In this essay we're examining a newly discerned mode: Dialectic as a way of life. From previous studies we've learned that Dialectic enables us to gain access to the Higher Realm of Forms, those ideals, patterns, forces, and aspirations that manifest in all terrestrial entities: persons, objects, events, concepts, and ideas. We study dialectical interchange because it leads to union with the Divine, which is our ongoing goal.

      In this essay, we'll explore the ideas and practices of four mystics who illustrate Dialectic with the Divine as a way of life:

Rufus Moseley 1

Rufus Moseley's practice of continuing union with Jesus

"I have lived in the consciousness that to have Jesus in me and for me to abide in Him is of such infinite worth that nothing must be allowed to break, even for an instant, this ineffable union."

Rufus Moseley, Manifest Victory
Brother Lawrence 2

Practicing the
Presence of God

"I make it my priority to persevere in His holy presence, wherein I maintain a simple attention and a fond regard for God, which I may call an actual presence of God. Or, to put it another way, it is an habitual, silent, and private conversation of the soul with God."

Brother Lawrence, Practicing the
Presence of God
de Caussade 3

Abandonment to
Divine Providence

"Consider your life, and
you will see that it consists of countless trifling actions. Yet God is quite satisfied with them for doing them as they should be done is ;the part we have to play in our striving for perfection . . .

"The finding of the divine action in all that occurs at each moment, in and around us, is true science, a continuous revelation of truth, and an unceasingly renewed intercourse with God."

Frank C. Laubach 4

Frank Laubach

Mysticism and Literacy

"As for me I resolved that I would succeed better this year with my experiment of filling every minute full of the thought of God than I succeeded last year.

"And I added another resolve--to be as wide open toward people and their need, as I am toward God. Windows open outward as well as upward! Windows especially open downward where people need most!"

Letters By a
Modern Mystic

      Dialectical interchange as a way of life is the mode of being we should adopt for our ordinary experience, because we want to remain as constantly in union with the Divine as possible. This way of life involves a constant verbal, mental, or spiritual interchange for the purpose of understanding and emulating Divine activities and intentions in regard to ourselves and the entire realm of being.

"Fools are those who are not in constant intercourse with their own divine nature."


     Rufus Moseley and Frank Laubach worked in conjunction with the Perennial Tradition, while Brother Lawrence and de Caussade made contact with the Perennial Tradition, but remained within the orthodox Christian tradition.

      Rufus Moseley is significant in demonstrating that even in the twentieth century a person could live within a religious tradition and still be a genuine mystic and can center his devotion on one spiritual leader (Jesus) and yet revere other teachers.

"I have found in the free romantic spirit of the poets more of what I am feeling after than I have in the philosophers and theologians. More than any other mortals the poets have succeeded in giving glimpses of the shape of things to come. Plato, a poet as well as a philosopher, gave me idealism in such a perfect form that his appeal has been tremendous. It was while reading Plato that I had my first experience of being lost in the beauty of the ideal realm."
J. Rufus Moseley, Manifest Victory

      Frank Laubach made contact with the non-sectarian and universal stream of the Perennial Tradition, while remaining very much infused with the spirit of Jesus of Nazareth.

"Living in the atmosphere of Islam is proving --thus far --a tremendous spiritual stimulus. Mohammed is helping me. I have no more intention of giving up Christianity and becoming a Muhammadan than I had twenty years ago, but I find myself richer for the Islamic experience of God. Islam stresses the will of God. It is supreme. We can not alter any of His mighty decrees. To try to do so means annihilation. Submission is the first and last duty of man.

"I must confront these Moros with a divine love which will speak Christ to them though I never use his name. They must see God in me, and I must see God in them. Not to change the name of their religion, but to take their hand and say, 'Come, let us look for God.'"

Frank Laubach, Letters By a Modern Mystic

      We'll explore the ideas of the four mystics listed who achieved the higher state of dialectical interchange as a way of life.

  1. Rufus Moseley: Manifest Victory

  2. Brother Lawrence: Practicing the Presence of God

  3. Jean-Pierre de Caussade, Abandonment to Divine Providence

  4. Frank C. Laubach: Letters By a Modern Mystic

"The Father is in me and I am in the Father. I assure you that the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. What the Son does is always modeled on what the Father does, for the Father loves the Son and shows him everything that he does himself."

The Good News According to John


1 Rufus Moseley:

      I had the privilege of meeting Rufus Moseley, a person who had unquestionably achieved the state of "surrender." Rufus was so absorbed in Jesus that he was clearly in two worlds at the same time. He would be speaking to an individual or a group and suddenly start communicating with Jesus simultaneously. His books Manifest Victory and Perfect Everything testify to his continual absorption in Jesus.

In his introduction to Rufus Moseley's book Perfect Everything, E. Stanley Jones describes Rufus's mystical state.
"It is easy to get tangled up in Rufus Moseley's approach to life and the paraphernalia that accompany that approach and miss the real thing. It takes some time to get him. One man said: 'The first time I heard Rufus Moseley I thought he was crazy, the second time I heard him I knew I was crazy.'
"Many are put off by his delivery. But you must understand that if his hands jiggle in spiritual rapture it is because it is the outer expression of his brain cells dancing at the sheer joy of being. He is inwardly laughing at the rhythm of life and his outer expressions are the attempt to express that inner laughter. "

2 Brother Lawrence (1610-1691) was born Nicholas Herman around 1610 in Herimenil, Lorraine, a Duchy of France. Brother Lawrence died in 1691, having practiced God's presence for over forty years. His quiet death was much like his monastic life where each day and each hour was a new beginning and a fresh commitment to love God with all his heart.

3 Jean Pierre de Caussade (1675-1751) was a deeply spiritual man who practised what he preached--abandonment to God. A Jesuit and a Frenchman, he left behind him a treatise on this subject: Abandonment to Divine Providence. But what has also come down to us are letters he wrote to the Nuns of the Visitation at Nancy. De Caussade's perennial advice was to welcome whatever was given in the present moment as flowing directly from God. Such abandonment to God is the heart of the spiritual life.

4 Frank C. Laubach