That was an interesting quote (of Eliot's mystical experience).  I would love to read his 'Silence' if it was available.  
  Do you think Eliot's experience could be related to this poem:
'All is abolished but the mute Alone.
The mind from thought released, the heart from grief,
Grow inexistent now beyond belief;
There is no I, no Nature, known-unknown.
The city, a shadow picture without tone,
Floats, quivers unreal; forms without relief
Flow, a cinema's vacant shapes; like a reef
Foundering in shoreless gulfs the world is done.

Only the illimitable Permanent
Is here. A Peace stupendous, featureless, still.
Replaces all, - what once was I, in It 
A silent unnamed emptiness content
Either to fade in the Unknowable
Or thrill with the luminous seas of the Infinite.'

cr mittal <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
    Wow! Thank you, David, for quoting that most wonderful passage
  from the Four Quartets. O, it gives a most musical expression to
  the moment where the temporal and the eternal, the human and the divine,
  intersect -- a moment that transcends both pleasure and pain. In Indian 
  thought we call it the moment of "yogic" union with the divine --
  the mystic moment that William Wordsworth said brought
  that blessed mood
  In which the burthen of the mystery,
  In which the heavy and the weary weight
  Of all this unintelligible world, 
  Is lightened:--that serene and blessed mood,
  In which the affections gently lead us on,--
  Until, the breath of this corporeal frame
  And even the motion of our human blood
  Almost suspended, we are laid asleep
  In body, and become a living soul:
  While with an eye made quiet by the power
  While with an eye made quiet by the power
  Of harmony, and the deep power of joy,
  We see into the life of things.
  You'll kindly permit me to quote in this context a passage from 
  Lyndon Gordon's book Eliot's Early Years that recounts such an
  experience of Eliot:
  "About the same time that Eliot graduated from Harvard  College,
  while walking one day in Boston, he saw the streets suddenly
  shrink and divide. His everyday preoccupations, his past, all the 
  claims of the future fell away and he was enfolded in a great silence. 
  In June 1910 he wrote a poem he never published called 'Silence',
  his first and perhaps most lucid description of the timeless moment.
  Eliot's intuition in the noisy street is similar to Emerson's on the 
  common when he felt 'glad to the brink of fear.' At the age of 
  twenty-one Eliot had one of those experiences which, he said, 
  many have had once or twice in their lives and been unable to put
  into words. 'You may call it communion with the Divine or you may 
  call it temporary crystallization of the mind', he said on another 
  occasion. For some, such a moment is part of an orthodox religious
  life, for others -- like Emerson -- it is terminal, sufficient in itself, 
  and gratefully received." 
    Such moments, however, have also been part of the human 
  experience reached in the course of their selfless identification with,
  or a complete devotion to duty, to righteous action (in India we call it 
  "dharma" -- Buddha wrote 'Dhammapada', the path of dharma, 
  the path of righteous action. It is during such moments of passionate
  absorption that "Labour is blossoming or dancing", as Yeats said, 
  where one becomes one with one's act -- the dancer becomes
  the dance.
  It is thus as well that "samsaara" (the phenomenal world) is
  transcended even while one is within it. It becomes identical with
  "nirvaana" (liberation from suffering) -- the field of action
  becomes the field of freedom.
  Thanks again, and with my grateful regards.
  ~ CR


David Boyd <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
      In a message dated 07/12/2006 18:01:33 GMT Standard Time, [log in to unmask] writes:
    Dear Ken,
  This is just to share my reflection on your "one is the other 
  (the act being different from the "fact").
  It's in "action" alone that this identity becomes one --
  the "fact" is imperfect.  As WB Yeats wrote 'Among
  School Children':
  Labour is blossoming or dancing where
The body is not bruised to pleasure soul.
Nor beauty born out of its own despair,
Nor blear-eyed wisdom out of midnight oil.
O chestnut-tree, great-rooted blossomer,
Are you the leaf, the blossom or the bole?
O body swayed to music, O brightening glance,
How can we know the dancer from the dance?
  Or as Eliot remarked in the Four Quartets:
  "but you are the music / While the music lasts."
  The "samsaara" becomes "nirvaana" in the course of
  righteous action. The aspect of "samsaara" undergoes
  a sea change.
  ~ CR
  So glad to encounter another fan of that truly magnificent piece of Yeats -

  this also chimes perhaps with the following from 'Burnt Norton' [sorry if I'm missing any points here, but haven't been closely following the thread. ]
  At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless;
Neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is,
But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity,
Where past and future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards,
Neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point,
There would be no dance, and there is only the dance.
I can only say, there we have been: but I cannot say where.
And I cannot say, how long, for that is to place it in time
  Best wishes

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