The sticky part is that these direct perceptions of God are both perceptions of reality as it is, and symptoms of a mental illness. The navigation becomes a bit tricky. Does one want to be well and do good to one's fellow creatures, or does one want to see God? Of course we would all like to be able to do both at once, and some authorities say we can do both at once. Or they go so far as to say that the two projects are identical. Which would be nice, of course. Very tidy.
I had an epileptic friend who was crushed by realizing that his visions of God were "just" symptoms of his illness. We had a running argument about this: I held the position that the fact that these visions were symptoms of his illness had no bearing whatsoever on whether they were true perceptions. I never convinced him of that, though. And he never convinced me of the contrary. (They were his visions, not mine, so it was none of my business anyway.)
There are times when you hear the mutter of the weight of Earth shifting on its aching bones, a low groan below the bottom range of human hearing. Or other times when you see the Sun come to rest inside some young person's chest, irradiating everything from their heart-center, every gesture drenched in light, till the brightness makes you close your eyes and turn away to recover yourself. Or there's another music, beyond another range of hearing, neither Earth nor Sun. It has something to do with those places where the outlines of hill and mountain become shapes of blue and gray tiled against each other. Overlapped edges.
It's all horribly easy to trivialize. Vide ten million picture postcards. The sun through a wave just before it breaks; the gulls against the sunset; the line of the sea cliffs. Pay down your dollar and you can hold it in your hands, and send it to your Aunt Catherine with a line or two about the weather. Sure. That too.
But now I've lost the thread, which is not surprising. Who cares about the postcards? Ruat Coelum. We were speaking of the sun.
Shadows of the unseen trees to the east shifting on the laurel and juniper, as the sun rises. The real one, I mean; the one that flares up in a billion years or so and catches the marshmallow on fire. I am very tired, and I have failed in more ways than I even knew I was trying. But you all know that: we're all tired.
It's time to fetch a mask and go shopping. Lots of love, you.