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Inner Smell

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

Excerpts about Inner Smell

Every Time You have a Moment of Insight, it’s as if You Open the Perfume Bottle for a Second and Closed it Again

We’re seeing something here about insight, that the truth is not just a matter of knowing a certain fact. With an insight, there is an energetic sense in your mind and body that indicates more certainty and gives you a sense of freedom that is more satisfactory. It’s a more palpable, lived sense of freedom. As further insights occur, they go deeper, and the certainty also gets deeper. When this process continues for some time, you might feel there is something in the air, almost like a taste, a fragrance. You taste, sense, smell, and feel something almost sweet, satisfying. There is a sense of an intimate kind of closeness to yourself, along with a freedom of expansion. There’s a sense of satisfaction that goes with the experience of insight. It is more than just: “I’m free from this.” Every time you have a moment of insight, it’s as if you open the perfume bottle for a second and close it again. It’s as if you have smelled something—freedom, satisfaction, whatever. Having one insight after another is like opening the bottle many times. You can smell the aroma continuously. So there is something in insight that allows us to know directly, without questioning, that something is true, more so than in the experience of ordinary perception. That sense of certainty seems to be intimately linked with the sense of satisfaction, a sense of being more intimate with oneself, closer to oneself. What does it mean to get more intimate and closer to yourself? There’s more warmth, more satisfaction. There’s a sense of freedom and truth. The facts have led us there, although the facts were not exactly what we were looking for. What we’re looking for is that sense of intimacy, closeness, freedom, satisfaction.

We Have a Capacity to Smell Emotions

In addition to having a texture and a taste, essential aspects have a smell as well; you can begin to smell the inner state. Some people say that they can smell fear. We do have a capacity to smell emotions. Not only can you smell fear, you can smell love. Love happens to have the smell of roses, or sometimes jasmine. If you smell the Green Essence, it smells like mint. You can smell freshness, you can smell staleness, you can smell rottenness, you can smell depression. You can taste, smell, and touch the quality of restraint, which is much like leather. You can do the same with the state of inertia, which feels like lead, or with the state of deadness in the soul, which feels like wood. As we see, all of these familiar ego states have textures, tastes, and smells just like external physical objects do. And different people have developed different capacities for sensing these states. Some people use mostly the inner touch. Some people can perceive taste easily but haven’t developed their sense of smell much; others develop smell to an unusual degree. But the development of a given subtle capacity has a direct relation to the corresponding physical capacity. For example, people who develop a fine appreciation for different kinds of food and a discrimination of their subtle differences can develop the inner capacity of taste more easily than the other subtle capacities, and more readily than individuals who are not so attuned to their taste buds. The same is true with smell and with touch. But this is not so in every case. Some people who are great connoisseurs of food and wine, for example, never develop the capacity for inner taste. 

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