Originally posted as Tuesday’s Quotes #33 – July 14, 2015 with a different image.
The mystery of life is not a problem to be solved; it is a reality to be experienced.”
— J.J. van der Leeuw, “The Conquest of Illusion”
Jacobus Johannes van der Leeuw (1893 – 1934) was president of the Dutch Theosophical Society from 1930 – 1931, but, as was fairly common among the more philosophically inclined with family money, he’d also spent time testing the waters of various religions, and practices. He’d been a close friend of J Krishnamurti, but unlike Krishnamurti, he’d not lost his hopes for the New World Order that the Theosophists were promoting. He was killed, relatively young, in a plane crash in Africa.
Not a huge fan of the Theosophists, I do nonetheless appreciate the writings of some of their more noteworthy adherents. This particular quote is another one of those that serve as a kind of affirmation for me. Another way of remembering to keep everything in perspective – and to keep enjoying the ride.
I deviated a bit with this quote by giving the source material. I recently discovered that this particular quote has multiple attributions, but the earliest I could find was from van der Leeuw’s 1928 book on the nature of consciousness – the illusions we hold on to and the search for the reality behind the illusions.
Image of storm clouds over the Rio Grande at sunset, July 4, 2016, Overlook Park, White Rock, New Mexico