As I cannot know God with the intellect, and I shall refuse to resort to analogy which implies a pre-existent knowledge of God, I must seek an empirical approach through personal experience. Now experience of itself may not be the truth of God, but it may be a finger that points in the correct direction.
Let me tell you of a very recent experience. It had not started out as a good day, but neither was it excessively bad. In short, it was manageable, or so I had convinced myself. I had awoken with but a single thought, namely that more than anything else in the world I wanted our dog, Molly, restored to us, alive and in perfect health. But that could not be. So once more I had to endure the grief of her passing. The remainder of the morning passed in a mood of depression. I had not slept well for weeks, maybe months, I don't know. I was tired in mind and body. We had lunch, and I was determined not to take a post-prandial snooze. I was fine, and in full control. My body would do as it was told, when it was told. So I worked through the afternoon before taking a shower and going out to tea with friends. We had tea and cake, and I had a very generous helping of cream, and seconds to follow. I should have been warned, but I was in control was I not? Cream I do not eat! It is nothing more than a calorie-ridden, sickly indulgence as far as I am concerned. (Champagne falls into a similar category!) Oh yes, I should most certainly have been warned.
It was whilst driving home that the incident occurred. We had come to a crossroads, and I had stopped, momentarily. It was odd, but I simply did not see the other car, a big, Japanese 4x4 approaching at high speed. I heard a gasp from Lucy, and as I looked once again at the approaching vehicle I realised that there was nothing I could do to avert a collision. My final thought at that point was that I simply did not care! The physical details of the rest of the encounter are not important here, but disaster was averted by the thinking and action of the other driver. Suffice it to say that at the time my perception was that the likelihood of death or severe injury was extremely high. What is important is my recollection of my spiritual state at the time.
I have spent days going over that experience of 'I do not care'. Certainly I care deeply about my wife. I also care about the car, but far less so. No, this was something quite different from that kind of caring, but I must take this one step at a time. It seemed as if my ego, so loathe to acknowledge the truth of its own fallibility and imminent demise, had decided to let me go and disappear from the scene. I could not think; I could not feel; I could not sense anything except what my eyes were seeing. Devoid of my ego, or most of it at least, I found myself in the presence of, and totally identified with, some sense of otherness, a presence that I assumed to be my true Self. That Self was not concerned by cares of any sort. It simply observed without passing judgement. It felt nothing because It was completely detached. The whole incident was not dissimilar to a peak experience. I was also aware that there was no tension present, for that had disappeared with my ego. I can only say that presence has always been there, and it will always continue to be there, even when I cannot see it.
Now what, one might ask, has all this to do with the experience of a true God? Perhaps nothing, and I do not claim to have been in contact with God, and certainly not that he saved us that day. That salvation was in the hands, not of otherworldly agencies, but of very this-worldly agencies. I would claim, however, that in being rejected by my ego-consciousness I was left in the figurative hands of my true Self, and that finger was likely to be pointing in the direction of God. The enforced state of detachment, of letting go, is a characteristic of a meeting with God, or at least some divine intermediary. You see, I realised at that time that it is the ego that is the 'Ancient of Days'. The true God is still young, is still in a state of becoming. It lives in the eternal here-and-now, a state that is so very difficult to enter voluntarily.
.......... I reached out to the slowly spinning sphere, that is both God-like and foetal-like, full of nascent life. And I can hear it. It is the sound of an ageless child humming to itself, alone, engaged in a gentle activity of concentrated observation. Here, around this Child-God, or perhaps God-child, is the missing input that I need. That input is love..........
[Extract from my Qabalah Diaries]
If this were the only experience I have had, I would note it with interest and leave it to vegetate in a diary somewhere. But there have been too many supportive writings and experiences by others, including saints and mystics down the years, to allow this experience to be discarded. The way to God is inwards. One must detach and, as the author of "The Cloud of Unknowing" once wrote, look upwards to the Cloud of Unknowing, and downwards at the Cloud of Forgetting.
I have offered all such detail as seems relevant lest it be assumed that I have drawn erroneous conclusions drawn from highly selective data. It will be the task, if so chosen, for you my readers to comment, and to decide whether my conclusions are valid or not. It will be my task to listen. In any case my search will continue.