The Science of Divine Light
By Lee and Steven Hager
Few things are mentioned in connection with the Divine as often as love and light. Since we can express love ourselves, we understand and appreciate it more readily. But like love, the deeper meaning of light can also expand our understanding of the Divine, the universe and our own true nature. Light has been given many meanings in spiritual teachings, but recent scientific research has added a richer perspective to ancient wisdom.
Religions and cultures through the ages have used the contrast between light and darkness as symbols for good and evil. For example, the Bible at John 3:20-21 reads, “For everyone who does evil hates the light…But he who does what is true comes to the light.” Unfortunately this dualistic symbolism has often kept us at the surface of our understanding of Divine light. The Byzantine mystic, Saint Symeon, revealed a more fundamental meaning when he described the Divine as, “A light infinite and incomprehensible…one single light…simple, timeless, eternal…the source of life.” In this case, light is not symbolic but literal, as Saint Symeon tells us that the very being of the Divine is light.
In early Christian gnostic writings, the ‘being’ of the Divine is also described as a literal ‘life-giving perfect light.’ The Secret Book of John reads, “The One is the immeasurable light. . .Not that the One possesses this. Rather, the One gives immeasurable and incomprehensible light.” These words also reflect the sentiments of the Katha Upanishad written about 1500 years before Jesus, “There shines not the sun, neither moon nor star, nor flash of lightening, nor fire lit on earth. The One is the light reflected by all.” Rumi also affirmed that the Divine is light, but went on to explain that this light also permeates and sustains everything in existence when he said, “One matter, one energy, one Light, one light-mind, endlessly emanating all things.”
When we consider light in material terms, we might think about the energy released from sun and stars that illuminate our world or the speed of light used as a measure to help define the parameters of space/time. However, the sages were referring to another light; quantum light that serves as a universal foundation or matrix. Scientists once believed that a vacuum or emptiness surrounded matter. As they attempted to prove their theories, they discovered the ‘emptiness’ was actually a sea of quantum light energy so powerful, a single cubic meter is capable of boiling all the oceans of the world!