Meantime, my apologies to those who have written me when, often, I do not have time to write back. My apologies too, for being remiss in developing this area. Initially, it wasn't important to me if anyone publicly acknowledged that what I was doing was helpful to them; I could already see as much from the number of return visits and lengthy stays in my site stats. Recently however, I received a few comments in a row during a particularly low period. It was very encouraging to read those words. It occurred to me that those who write may need to know that their words have been helpful to me, even if I'm not able to acknowledge them personally.
Without any further ado, here is a collection of some comments I have received in regard to my blogs...
To the anonymous angel at Spiritual Emergency:
Just a word of deep gratitude for your blog.
The spirit that breathes through it is beautiful.
What I read here is helpful and comforting in a time of deep distress.
So much solid info.
So little presence of ego.
Thank you for allowing the lessons of your journey to breathe through
what you offer to others.
Your story and your websites seem fascinating. I'm still investigating...
I am happy that my guides lead to your website. I have found it very informative, and it appears that you come from much of the same schooling that I've been exposed to. [...]
By the way, I have been spritually awoken too, and continue to walk life's path with the wind to my back while often listening to a whisper here and there. Any and all negativity aside, I find it powerfully meaningful, educational, facinating & amusing to say the least, plus these intelligent invisible beings (who like to be called angels), and the whole spiritual awakening process was a beautiful distraction that basically saved my life.
Great to see your blogs on spiritual emergency. Very well done.
My prime spiritual emergency happened more than 35 years ago. It transformed my life and continues to do so. Some accounts are on this page: www.sacredtransformations.com
Hello...I have been reading your excellent material and just want to say that like many others who have experienced Kundalini and had it called "psychosis," I relate to just about everything on your site. It was R.D. Laing's work (including Mary Barnes) that got me through a year in an altered state and out the other end of it.
I was a "Listener" for the Spiritual Emergency Network for several years and heard from people all over the country. I organized a group of 7-8 people from the New York area where I live -- we met for a number of months. El Collie's newsletter Shared Transformation, was so valuable to us all. I recommended it to everyone who called. It meant so much, as most of us had no other means of understanding, or others to communicate with.
Your post entitled "How to Produce a Psychotic Break," makes sense to me, although I never have suffered a psychotic break or delusions. However, I know about loss...
We, as a culture, are so quick to celebrate everything. What we need are rituals for losses. Venting, craziness. Crying, screaming, venting death, divorce, loss, pain and agony.
I am thinking of moving to Mexico. At least they are not afraid of the dead there, indeed, they honor them every year during Dia de los Muertos. I think they are saner than we are, and we think we are so superior and evolved...
I am glad that you are doing what you are doing; I remember the importance of having other people's stories of madness when I was going through the process. One more resource that might be of interest is John Custance, who wrote Wisdom, Madness, and Folly many years ago. He looked at his mania from a Jungian point of view, long before there was much support for that kind of thing. I was glad to see Stan Grof's book linked since that is a good resource as well. You might find Custance's book in a library but I fear is it out of print.
My awakening was in 1980. Not that much different than yours. There are thousands of us, if not millions, having this 'kundalini' wakening, particularly in the 80s - 90s.
I hope you are living your spiritual calling & I wish you well.
thank you for doing your part to support those in spiritual crisis.
thank you! your pages have been very helpful to me.
Thank you for the link: When the Dream Becomes Real. I'm currently reading it. I identify with it so much because it re-enforces the fact that my "sickness" started when I wanted to change my life, when I had a few failures under my belt and on top of that was struggling with [other areas of my life]. Most of the time now, on the drug, I feel so spaced out and groggy, but I'm in the process of being weaned off of the medication and therefore have a drug free life to look forward to. I can't wait for that to happen. Thanks again for the link, its helping.
One of the best blogs I have ever come across.
Thank you so much for your blog.
I appreciate it very much.
I have a friend who recently (in June) had a psychotic episode and she is currently in a county mental hospital. I live 8 hours away and I feel so helpless. The information you have makes sense. You give me hope...
You have an absolutely beautiful blog. I have enjoyed reading what I have read tonight and hope to find a quiet moment to read more tomorrow.
I did want to comment, it has always amazed me how a person can "know" without "learning". My own spiritual beliefs were realized before I was aware they had preexisted in other cultures for thousands of years. I still lean on my daily experiences for guidance and only check religious texts after fully experiencing my own reactions, like savoring delicious food.
Thank you for the hard work in creating your blog. I believe it will serve a great purpose and hopefully it is as rewarding to you as it is to those who read it.
Dear Spiritual Emergency,
I love your blog and I LOVE the name you chose. This is a spiritual emergency. The spirit of man is far too often crushed by psychiatric labels and drugs. [...] I'm very glad to hear that you recovered from whatever caused your psychotic break.
There is something I'd like you to take a look at: Stop The Psychiatric Screening of School Children. This is a petition aimed at keeping children free from undue psychiatric influence, giving them the chance to grow up without psych labels and drugs. Please look at it and, if you agree, sign it.
Your blog has inspired me to do more.
I came across your website blog and it looks very interesting. Thank you for putting it together. It's an important area. I try and help people who are being treated for psychosis and spiritual approaches seem very helpful.
Keep up the good work.
thank you for sharing your experience and knowledge, i am emerging from a similiar situation, it was more progressive, something I have been dealing with since i was a child. it is a comfort to know others have had similiar experiences, and that I am not alone. I have people who care for me but do not understand.
thank you for the information
I wanted to thank you so very much for your blog on spiritual emergence. I have recently had an experience that fits although I have managed to ground my ego in the last week to keep from completely dissociating. This was brought on by experiential therapy and a state of despair and anxiety I progressively fell into. [...] I experienced a great sense of psychic isolation and a sense of huge and hostile energies out to annihilate me. My original therapist (who I've returned to and who helped to ground me) works with shamanism and energy and she is pacing the work at the moment.
I work in education and have been focusing a lot on myths and archetypes - I am planning to do a PhD in this area and have a Masters in Psychology - none of which has really prepared me for this bewildering and frightening experience. I'm not sure what's ahead of me but your site is a huge comfort and I am very grateful that you have gone through this journey and now have had the courage to share it.
I have just now found your site and agree that schizophrenia is not a permanent mental condition. I have a site about a little known problem with human physiology, the physiology of sight, related to the vision startle reflex.
This phenomenon produces altered mental states that resembles schizophrenia for users of Qi Gong and Kundalini Yoga. This argues that low level, long term, excessive exposure, whether in poorly designed office workspace or accidental creation of the "special circumstances" to cause Subliminal Distraction in homes, dorms, or single-room ethnic housing around the world is the cause of mental illness.
Although there are several theories espoused for the cause of mental illness they all are based on a statistical correlation. No one has researched the problem on my site. It may be the reason for your success. Any modality for treatment that reduces exposure to visual Subliminal Distraction will help especially in the early stages of onset.
I am searching for those interested in helping to evaluate this problem. That might be as simple as a link exchange on your site.
I found your blog today and have bookmarked it. A fantastic resource and a point of view I've sadly never given the consideration it deserves. Thank you for a lovely blog!
Reverend Sumangali Tania Pink
my beloved soulwalker
my other Self
the looking glass of this
one time galactic tree
Krishna's bittersweet melody
used and discarded
dying solo by the side of the road
hauntingly beautiful haunted soul
laughing now on his way back to the Void
did I forget to cherish him even once?
too late for that particular whip now
life flows back
in this floating inner woman's void
which so needs to be anchored
through each of the human animal’s senses
while still in human flesh
let me play the humane choice
with this distraught body
of a burning young crone
while the hands of time shape a river
slowly rushing in space
three turns of the moon ago
i thought I saw a curious sight
in a mask of shadows
barely one of those radiant bells
from the Gothic unwidowed bride at the midnight ball
often ringing by surprise
jolting me from this corner in heavenly hell
just one of That One shapeshifters’ Lights
shimmering through another's eyes
rushed forth to greet Him
opened up to reach him
and he ran right out of soul town
clouds of Bhakti madness
shades of Mirabai
I'd trade all my blings for His Beloved glance
my very life and things for His feathered embrace
let me live and die right under His many eyes
one for each letter of Samsaric Paradise
whom to embrace
of the 10,000 hands beckoning in transient mirage
when The Beloved smiles
straight from the core of the Triple I?
Thank you for your blog.
Many thanks for your website it really helped me to come to terms with my own horrendous experience last march. For the last eight years I have belonged to a spiritual group which taught the medicine wheel. I was also doing a lot of Buddhist meditation. My dog died in January and in March I had what I would like to call a spiritual emergency. To me it is a more positive and helpful way to describe the psychotic experience. However, my spiritual group didn't see it that way and I've been excluded.
Although I have now completely recovered from the attack and am back in work, the exclusion from this group of people who I thought of as friends has left a sense of enduring grief. Is this scenario something you have come across before? Most sites say that some sort of spiritual practice is a good way to heal after a time. But it seems that even some spiritual teachers would prefer to use the mental health label. I am shocked at what happened to me and by the responses of my friends.
Thank you for your insightful blog. I have begun studies in transpersonal psychotherapy having spent many years being an unfulfilled xxxxxx. The change in direction came after a breakdown in all aspects of my life, in work relationships, family and personal relationships and my sense of self was shattered.
Your blog has helped me to better understand the process I am going through. I am regaining my trust in the universe. I have a lot more to read on your site but I wanted to thank you now for taking the time to create this site as it has given me great comfort.
I just want to thank you for your wonderful website which I have only begun to explore.
I had a spiritual experience three years ago. [...] The experience transformed me for the better, but I also experienced paranoia and other scary things. I think this probably had a lot to do with the fact that my mother has been trapped in the mental health system with a diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder. I have watched my mother's inner experience be destroyed by psychiatry.
I feared that I had the same 'illness', but thankfully, I didn't go near a psychiatrist and thank the goddess I had access to the internet. The internet saved me because I found knowledge of Carl Jung and Joseph Cambell. I was overwhelmed by everything though and I must admit I tried to ignore the whole thing for a while and become super rational. Anyway, I have now come to understand that my experience was actually the start of the hero's journey and I am in the process of trying to understand as much about it as I can.
So thanks for this website. I look forward to reading more.
Thank you for your blogs! I incidentally found your "Spiritual Emergency" blog, then the other one. I find them interesting and very useful. I have got my own computer & internet home only since last December. Nevertheless some of the authors of your blogs were already familiar to me, mostly via books. (I haven't yet read ALL of your blogs!)
I live in Northern Finland. The main ideas of Dr. Seikkula's writings are pretty much the ones used here in mental health care. However, I had some problems with the people trying to treat me. I didn't want to admit I was ill. Now, I am functioning pretty well.
Thanks for the site. Keep up the good work. I studied physics at university before i started having my spiritual crisis/es. It's a hard debate for me because I was educated to have a lot of respect for "science". I now feel that even if you are philosophically a rationalist you must accept that alternative spiritual approaches seem to be more person-centred.
It's a rising tide. I have discussed some of these matters in various places and have found a lot of non-psychiatric scientists are quite open minded to the failings of the "shrinks' lobby".
thanks again and peace be with you...
I can’t begin to tell you what a relief it is to have come across your blog. ... I’ve been going through what I have become convinced (about 95% of the time—during the other 5% I’m convinced that I’m losing my mind) that I’ve had what you, and others, would refer to as a “spiritual emergence.” Like you, I was not trying to reach this state; it simply came on gradually over the course of the last few months.
I keep “testing” myself in order to try to figure out what else could be causing the things I’ve been experiencing; in most cases I come up with nothing, and my gut still tells me that what’s happening is real. None of it frightens me in the least. It’s all been indescribably beautiful—if I’m “crazy” then I’d really hate to go back to being “sane.” I function perfectly well with my family and friends (better, in some ways, as a result of the peace I feel). My thoughts are not disordered, and, aside from being a little distractible or occasionally in a kind of reverie (but not “out of it” in any way), I’m fully in control and capable of fulfilling my usual tasks, even as these things are happening (at this point, pretty much all the time). I’m not hearing any voices that tell me what to do, or criticize me, and I’m not paranoid. Aside from some mild depression, I’ve never had any psychiatric disorders. And my personal hygiene is just fine!
The only thing that frightens me, of course, is the fact that if anyone told me that they were experiencing the things I’ve been experiencing (at least before it happened to me), I’d personally pay for her cab to the nearest emergency psych ward. Every so often I think, “This can’t POSSIBLY be real,” and then I panic, thinking that I really could be losing my mind. It doesn’t last long, but it is scary to think that if I tell the “wrong person,” it’s all over.
I don’t need, or want, therapy. Aside from the occasional abovementioned worries, I’m more than happy with the situation—I certainly don’t consider it an “emergency.” I just need occasional reassurance that I’m not merely hallucinating for some non-spiritual reason, and that I’m not the only person in the world to feel this way (it was very comforting to come across the DSM IV’s new classification, and now your blog).
Thank you so much for this wonderful site! I greatly appreciate and value all of the energy and effort you have put into it. You have expressed trauma in ways that only another trauma survivor can understand. I think I will get more therapy from this site than from any of my therapists ever.
I just want to thank you for now for what you've done. I had a "psychotic" experience twelve years ago, and just am getting out of a second one. As a baby and child I suffered from two main traumatic events, and these experiences or episodes helped me to know about them more deeply and changed my way of seeing the world. I have only just discovered your blogs and have been reading avidly.
Well, good luck to you and thanks again
I just happened to read your blog today. I am from India. It has been almost a year since "my experience". I was not hospitalized either. I went through it by myself and my girl friend was living with me and she is a very loving person and supported me throughout.
To me it was totally a mystical experience at first and it is still. I was extremely stressed out before it happened. It started with me being in extreme ecstasy and I believed that I was enlightened and also that I was God myself. ... The experience lasted nearly two months. My old personality was dead and I came out a new person with very high moral values. ... Unlike your experience, mine had no fear in it. It was marked by a complete lack of fear and I was high most of the time.
I stopped drinking, smoking, eating meat, started doing yoga and was having lots of energy. Even before, I stumbled upon your blog, I have been doing a lot of reading on web and knew that my experience could be labelled as psychosis, mystical experience, kundalini awakening.
just to let you know that i
found your site today, even
as i'm undergoing another
level of my personal
spiritual emergency. great
that you have shared your
experiences with the world!
Hallo and well met
I just popped into your sites and would like to say that I can relate to your experiences. I`ve had a similar experience, call it a healing crisis, in 2006, spontaneous bursts of Kundalini rising. It was very painful and frightening, I thought a negative entity has attached itself to me. One of the most scary things about it was my absolute feeling of isolation. I live in a small city but with quite a number of medical specialists + alternative practitioners. I did the mental clinic route and while it gave my body time to rest, I could not trust the doctors. We did a merrry dance of skimping around issues.
I also spent a lot of time trawling the net for information, but much of what is out there are speculation or historical accounts hundreds of years old.
All the best
I just wanted to convey my appreciation for your extraordinary work in compiling these sources of information for others undergoing a spiritual transformation. I imagine your experiences and information will assist countless people along their respective paths, with newfound dignity and understanding, to boot.
In deepest gratitude,
I found your blog and was estatic. I'm right there with you....
I just wanted to say bravo... you touched me today. I too had a spiritual crisis and empathize with your journey. May you always walk in peace and harmony.
Thank you for sharing your experiences with the world ....it is a gift.
As I did a web search to day for John Weir Perry, I found your blogs. With skepticism, I immersed myself.
Brilliant. Direct, simple, very learned without being doctrinaire.
You write as a cartographer, not the creator of a personality centric map of your journey, but of The Journey. The brief information you provide us with about your own experience is archetypal in nature, transcending the personal, or even time and place.
You have kindred throughout the world, as witnessed by your respondee’s in the comments section. ...
After 33 years of healing and fighting on the front lines of madness, I am experiencing another spiritual crisis.
I had begun to doubt this, and doubt my strengths, and begun to consign myself to the role of “mentally ill cripple”, never again to be functional, never again to be able to either fight or heal.
Today, I have regained a moment of clarity.