- “Waking up” (“spiritual emergence”) is the true goal of human life.
“We are here to overcome the illusion of our separation.” (Thich Nhat Hanh)This “waking up” process can – and usually does – happen very gradually over time. Sometimes – and more often now than in the past – it happens very suddenly, with a seismic shift, the dramatic emergence of a “new person”.
That happened for me on June 26, 2019. After writing blogs on dogs, grocery stores, poetry, bipolar disorder and social action (links below), I have come to the writing of this blog. See the “Who he was” page, below.
When this process is unfolding with just a reasonable amount of wear and tear on the persona – the socialized self – Stanislav Grof calls this “spiritual emergence”. When it is happening especially fast or violently – or with not enough personal/social/societal help (so common in a society like ours, with so little spiritual anchoring or understanding) – the person can get into trouble, can start to not look so good, can have trouble functioning in daily life. Grof calls this a “spiritual emergency”.
Because there are so few shamans around – or spiritual “leaders” with any real understanding of the process of spiritual emergence – people who are in “spiritual emergency” frequently end up in the E.R., with psychiatrists who tend to “treat” them with a psychiatric label. This process of labeling can stigmatize them and confuse them about who they really are – maybe for their whole lives. And the doctors whose hands they are in typically compound this damage by giving the person powerful drugs that make it impossible for the spiritual emergence process to ever resolve itself..
- My own “waking up” process has its own particular focus.
This focus is most succinctly put in the working title for the book I am writing:Reclaiming the Body: Sex and Aggression for a New Age.
- Partly because this focus is so divergent from prevailing notions of what comprises “spirituality”, inevitably the impact of this blog – and my work in the world – is to cut through spiritual pretensions.Many who claim to be spiritual teachers or to have “higher consciousness” advocate “transcendence” of sex and aggression. They may even brand these natural and fundamental elements of human life as “bad” or “sinful” or “unconscious”. Transcendent paths – the “high road” to spirituality – may be valid paths, but they are not my path…not the path described in this blog.
If you believe or sense – maybe for the first time, as you read about this path – that there might be something in it for you to reclaim your body – including your own capacity for sex and/or aggression – then this blog can be valuable to you. If you even just find yourself curious enough to want to read what is going on here, then by all means read on.