“Never answer a question on the level of the question.” I seem to remember that statement from time to time. My teacher, Vernon Howard, practiced that with his students. He was simply not available or there to deal with a student’s everyday problems. They were called to him to learn that God puts the answers on a higher level than the question.

Answers are always encapsulated in one’s being and can only be accessed when the time is right. Therefore, waiting was also something that Vernon spoke of constantly. We all know the Bible verse that talks about waiting on God to renew our strength. Not sure what it means, we sit and ponder verses like that. Does it mean that thinking does no good? Yes. And much more. But don’t ask me what I mean by that.

Dilemma is essential in the life of a seeker. Life is a series of them, one following another and often piling up on us until we cry Uncle. And no one ever reaches the mountain top. Anyone who claims they have is a fool and a liar.

I always say that the path begins when you are in the pit and know you are. Vernon says that when people are in the pit, refuse to throw down ropes to them. Make them climb half way up themselves and then throw the rope. Otherwise, you are simply wasting your time.

Esoteric Christianity is about inner work, not outer solutions. It is a fascinating thing to watch yourself struggle and fail, struggle and fail, struggle and fail. You cry out for help and no help comes. Does this mean God is absent? No, it means you are a bare beginner. You have to pray for the cup to pass from you, meanwhile drinking it and feeling how bitter it is.

Help will come. But not from any human being or from your own crazy mind. Love would have you know that.

Vicki Woodyard


  1. I have heard that called “the law of the paradox” but for myself I hear myself say “It is”, but “it isn’t” it isn’t” nonsensical mum-bo jumbo that makes no sense and therefor it makes perfect sense, the some times Zen koan is born.People can talk about it all day but there is a term sometimes used and that is transmission. When in the presence of one that is it might be felt or maybe even known.


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