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I was reading the Boeddhistisch Dagblad and came across a couple of short articles about a man called Hein Thijssen. He appeared to be an authentic Dutch mystic. I’ve translated a section of the article...
Hein Thijssen (1922-2008), was a former pastor, who said goodbye to church and Christianity at a later age and started a painful inner awakening process. The result of this process was a healed human, empty of all cerebral ballast and completely liberated. At the age of eighty he wrote the book "Empty and liberated, report of a lifetime" (2003).
Hein Thijssen went public in old age with his awakening and his insights. The last six years of his life he started writing about this (seven books in total) and giving interviews. Although he himself realized that the cake had almost run out (his own words) - and was at peace with it - he might have been able to inspire even more people. He was such an engaging, warm personality, with a penetrating, redeeming and universal "message". And let's not forget his wonderful, dry humor; "What I write is not a message to others, because I don't believe in messages, except what I have to do in the supermarket" ("Empty and Free", p. 12)[a pun, groceries and message are the same word in Dutch]. And this: "Life is a shitty blackbird. It flies and poops effortlessly and without thinking" (Article in Boeddhistisch Dagblad, April 6, 2015).
That philosophy covers the area between psychology / pedagogy and true, authentic spirituality (not to be confused with religion or new-age spirituality). Thijssen has that in common with, for example, Jan Geurtz. Both focus on the natural state of man and both point to the misconceptions and erroneous assumptions that obscure it; both also pay close attention to self-rejection as a result of painful and repressed childhood experiences that have blocked the experience of that natural state. Where Jan Geurtz approaches true spirituality from the Tibetan Dzogchen tradition, Hein is imbued with "naturalness" (in accordance with the Tao). Both can be placed against the background of Nonduality and Advaita. In one of his later books, Hein himself wrote a kind of declaration of love to the Advaita, which he only really got to know after his liberation.
I find it interesting that such an archetypal Dutch man, with a Christian background, in his old age turns out to be a mystic. He applied Arthur Janov’s primal therapy on himself in order to find out more about himself, and make progress in his process.
Do you know of any typical local mystics in your area?