When I was trying to qualify for postgraduate studies in Clinical Social Work, I had to take an exam called the MAT’s, or Miller Analogy Tests. It scared the hell out of every applicant, and we had to prepare with grueling prep tests. An analogy goes like this: A is to B, what C is to D. But it’s the relationship of A to B that is compared to the relationship of C to D. For example: “Black is to White, as On is to Off. “
The MAT test leaves out the first comparison: “Black is to White, as On is to Off, and asks “Black is to ……., as On is to Off“ But every analogy is different. Some are opposites, some are different categories. Some are similes. Imagine an hour of those, one after another, non-stop. You had to score above the 90th Percentile to be accepted into school. Okay, I scored 96 and the rest is history.
Now I am making a new analogy that asks one of the main questions in my book, Entering Eternity With Ease. ” Life is to death what eternity is to time.” Or better, death is to life what time is to eternity. Is this even an analogy? Whatever it is, there is a life and death relationship between life and death, and there is an eternal relationship between eternity and time. This is a paradox, an analogy, a simile, and a metaphor, all wrapped up in a mystery. It can only be accessed by mysticism and mindfulness.
I am fond of saying that spirituality is the practice of meditation that awakens us to our eternal presence in this material universe. Mindfulness is to meditation what a child is to its mother. It is through meditation that mindfulness grows strong enough to live in us every waking moment outside of meditation. We live mindfully when we eat with gratitude towards all the human beings and animals, and even inanimate objects that contributed to our food, some with their own lives. We live mindfully when we work with our minds, with our bodies, with conscious awareness. We live mindfully when we enjoy entertainment, the media. We live mindfully when we read, and study, or zoom or text, or talk on any device.
But what happened to our analogy? Is death to life what time is to eternity? Do we sense this? Is our life eternal, with no beginning and no end? And death is some kind of transition in life which we have never understood? Is time some transition in eternity which we have never understood? As we live each moment mindfully, but regularly charged with pauses of meditation, do we experience the eternal NOW in our depths, deep within our being- awareness? Do we understand that the millions of random thoughts that invade our brains are not our own thoughts, but invaders of our clean awareness? This is an example of what I mean by meditation.