"I, the highest and fiery power, have kindled every living spark and I have breathed out nothing that can die... I flame above the beauties of the fields; I shine in the waters, in the sun, the moon, and the stars, I burn, and by means of the airy wind, I stir everything into quickness with a certain invisible life which sustains all... I, the fiery power, lie hidden in these things as they blaze from me." - Hildegard of Bingen.
I first felt it when I was 23. I was a missionary who hadn't yet 'felt the spirit' when in the middle of a private prayer I felt like my heart had just lit up like a light bulb, a physical, almost disturbing sensation of space and illumination within the cavity of my ribcage. So tangible I stopped praying and opened my eyes... did I have heart-burn? was I having a heart-attack? no... just lightness. burning. cooling. And after that it would turn on at various times, in church, during discussions, while reading the scriptures, sometimes for no reason I could really tell.
Now, ten years later, after a devastating crisis of faith... It is still there. Not so predictable, more elusive. But there. Even sometimes in church, though I don't go very often anymore because when I do it is usually tedious at best, exhaustingly painful at worst. So odd that this icy cool light would blink on when I am enduring a talk full of statements that I no longer believe... but it happens (including a tiny flash in a sacrament meeting in mexico where I couldn't understand a word).
So too I felt it when conflicted with feelings and desire to pray to the Heavenly Mother... 'Oh please, dear Father, please let this be right..." and my veins tingled with warmth like my heart had transmuted all my blood into some luminous substance. I felt it briefly when I visited a quaker meeting, as well as almost every time I take the chance to get away by myself for a hike.
All my definitions have shifted, my beliefs on the nature of God, the godhead, The Holy Spirit, all of it. I no longer know exactly how to explain this feeling I get. That nasty antichrist Korihor accuses religious people of having a frenzied minds, deranged, minds and I do wonder sometimes if I haven't just manufactured these sensations. But I really don't believe that. I want to believe in something bigger and greater and all encompassing. I just no longer know exactly what that is.