Mysticism is the pursuit of knowledge or communication with a spirit, divine entity or God. It comes from the Greek word for ‘to conceal’ and is largely thought of by some to be an integral facet of human transformation.
Mysticism is present in almost every religion, although it may be described in different ways. For example, schools of Hinduism and Buddhism see it as a complete detachment from the world. It could also encompass a deep connection both with the world and with God, as well as complete freedom from the cycles of Karma. For other religions, a mystical experience could mean the experience of one’s true blissful nature. The general English term of ‘enlighten’ is loosely used to refer to mystical experiences regardless of faith or religion.
Supporters of mysticism see mysticism and mystical experiences as a deeper interpretation of mainstream doctrine. The inner and esoteric meanings of conventional faith is the main focus of mystics and mystical experiences. It also differs from conventional religion in that mysticism is less concerned with religious differences and more with individual development and acceptance of various means to achieve the ultimate spiritual state. Various schools of mysticism pass the secrets from teacher to student, although the relationship between teacher and the student differs from school to school. For some, secrets are carefully guarded until the student is ready, while in some schools the teacher merely acts as a guide.
The mystical experience is categorized into introvertive and extrovertive, theistic and non-theistic, theurgic and non-theurgic, and apopathic vs. katapathic.