A few thoughts after my wonderful conversation with Dabney Alix of Shades of Awakening! Dabney asked me ‘can having a mindfulness practice help prevent someone going into crisis?’ Great question! What I didn’t say is that these crises, when properly understood, validated and supported are such an opportunity for deep healing and growth, that we wouldn’t necessarily want to prevent them – as strange as that might sound!
We would certainly want to make them more manageable and less intense and that is where mindfulness can really help us, which is the point I made with Dabney. If we could do all the healing work and releasing of old trauma and wounds without crisis that would be wonderful, but often we don’t even realise we need that level of healing. Or we’ve gotten off track from our purpose in life and the psyche and soul join forces to get us back on track – in a rather drastic way!
So these crises also wake us up. Our awakening comes through them. A related question would be ‘is it possible to fully wake up without some kind of crisis?’ My research into spiritual emergency down through the ages, of people such as St Teresa of Ávila, Ramana Maharshi, Carl Jung and Eckhart Tolle, who all went through it, suggests not. You can read their stories of moving through spiritual emergencr(y) in my book In Case of Spiritual Emergency.
This also ties in with the point Phil Borges, director of the film CrazyWise, made during his conversation with Dabney, about the need to surrender. The more we resist these experiences the more excruciating they become. If we can trust and go with the flow, and again mindfulness helps here, then we will not suffer quite so much. It is, however, totally understandable, when we’re going through hell, that we would not want to be going through hell! That tendency to resist is our default setting. It’s only if we’ve learnt through mindfulness training to be able to spot that, watch it and not buy into it that we can start to help make things a little easier for ourselves.
Don’t forget to download my FREE GIFT ‘Getting Grounded’ on the Shades of Awakening website – just scroll down to under my name. I’m delighted to be sharing this wonderful mindfulness practice with you. My students love it!
And if you want to learn more about mindfulness and how it helps us move successfully through spiritual emergency, I’m offering a live online training for professionals. You’ll learn mindfulness and how to use it to work with the process of spiritual emergence(y), both for yourself and your clients or patients. Full details here.