I Am God.

To many, the statement “I am God” rings of blasphemy. God, according to conventional religion, is the supreme deity, the almighty eternal omniscient creator. How can any lowly human being claim that he or she is God? Cima_da_Conegliano,_God_the_Father

When the fourteenth-century Christian priest and mystic Meister Eckhart preached that “God and I are One” he was brought before Pope John XXII and forced to “recant everything that he had falsely taught.” Others suffered a worse fate. The tenth-century Islamic mystic al-Hallãj was crucified for using language that claimed an identity with God.

Yet when mystics say “I am God,” or words to that effect, they are not talking of an individual person. Their inner explorations have revealed the true nature of the self, and it is this that they identify with God. They are claiming that the essence of self, the sense of “I am” without any personal attributes, is God.

The contemporary scholar and mystic Thomas Merton put it very clearly:

“If I penetrate to the depths of my own existence and my own present reality, the indefinable am that is myself in its deepest roots, then through this deep center I pass into the infinite I am which is the very Name of the Almighty.”

“I am” is one of the Hebrew names of God, Yahweh. Derived from the Hebrew YHWH, the unspeakable name of God, it is often translated as “I AM THAT I AM.”

I am the infinite deep
In whom all the worlds appear to rise.
Beyond all form, forever still.
So am I
- Ashtavakra Gita

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