Stephen Prothero writes at Killing the Buddha:
I love the idea of mysticism—the notion that divinity comes to us by stealth, not in words and congregations but in silence and solitude, and when it comes it ravishes us and makes us new. So I envy those new creations who have been ravished, who fling open not only the windows of their senses but also the doors, and then wait for whatever might come knocking. I envy the mischievous Sufi Rumi, who was forever finding the universal divine in his particular beloved. What is the difference, he asked, between loving the limbs of his friend Shams and loving the words of the Fashioner of Forms? Nothing, says my Hildegard of the East Village, who revels with equally devilish delight in trespassing the borders between self and other and God.
Read the entire piece here.