Spiritual Individuation ( a precis )

Colours blind the eye.

Sounds deafen the ear.

Flavours numb the taste.

Thoughts weaken the mind.

Desires wither the heart.
The Master observes the world

but trusts his inner vision.

He allows things to come and go.

His heart is open as the sky.
From the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu
I know many of us with a predisposition towards the spiritual life can suffer tremendously as we precariously tread our path. There is in us all, our own rendition of spirituality. A unique and innate seed that seeks expression and fulfilment through our experience of life itself. My own was through the discovery that I am empathic.
I am no expert on anyone’s life as we all are different. Each of us growing from a distinct DNA in our own individual habitat of physical, psychological and emotional environments.

However, in the hope of helping others, I wish to communicate briefly my experience thus far.
After many years of reflection, meditation and various numinous experiences in my life I found that actually I knew my truth all along, I just needed to discover it. My truth was ingrained in my heart from the very beginning. I suspect it took awhile to discover as my truth was not of my culture and thus many of my spiritual experiences were alien to me as they were to my peers.

This is where the idea of spiritual individuation came from.
The term ” individuation ” was coined by Carl Jung, a psychiatrist and psychotherapist. His theory was that in order for humans to become the best version themselves we had to allow ourselves to be authentic. That is to seek to express in ourselves and in life our intuitive true nature. The problem with this is it can often be at odds with our culture, peers the society we are born into.
Although I never used to think that being empathic was a gift ( due to its initially confusing and draining properties ) , I now know that it was indeed. One which, once understood, has been pivotal in helping me find myself and for me, my true relationship with the world around me.
So to all you fellow strugglers, whatsoever pain or challenges you may face, rest assured that you are more than you perceive yourself to be. You are more than your current problems, more than your fears for the future and more than the hurts of your past. If you can carry on pursuing your heartfelt path, in my experience, you will find peace and equanimity.

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The Grove 


I have on many occasions happened upon sites that seem to have their own, shall we say, ‘ anima loci’ and associated energy. It is reputed that Nature Spirits too have a different, subtle but intense energy. It is then not particularly surprising that energetically sensitive individuals ( e.g. empaths) are more prone to sensing their presence. 
There were many there, just out of sight, obscured from my vision by their different vibration. They were able to manifest if they so desired, enabled even more so due to the liminal and numinous nature of the site. 

A canopy of leaves from the large cluster of fir trees prevented the daylight from revealing much of the ruinous stone circle and its environs. This added further more to the air of mystery and secrecy around me. Any ceremonial or magical activity was securely cloistered from the outside world by the tight knit plantation of trees and dense undergrowth surrounding the stones that remained. 

I sensed many ethereal eyes watching me from under the cover of the bushes, trees and foliage as I sat on a nearby log. The air around me felt heavy with anticipation as if I had in some way interrupted some sacred liturgy. 

The moist sandstone hewn stones covered in moss and lichen appeared to subtly emanate a low green phosphoresence again adding to the apparent preternaturalness of the occasion. 

 The overhanging branches of the trees met the verdant amorphous scrub rising up from bog strewn soil as if to encapsulate all within in a further act of concealment. 

A small winged creature skittered across the pond a little off to my left in my peripheral vision. I was uncertain as to what creature it may have been but its action was determinedly avoidant. 

The slim lower branches of the trees were entwined with gorse, holly and ferns forming an almost impenetrable mesh in the undergrowth around the stones themselves. I swear that I could see hundreds of small faces in amongst the leaves, some wizened and grotesque whilst some appeared young and vibrant. 

Feeling distinctly awkward, a little anxious and somewhat unnerved I stood up to leave by the way I came. The pathway between the trees was up ahead, strange fluorescent blue lights seemed to be emanating from behind them as if each one were hiding a wisp like spirit within their trunks. They lined either side of the track like surreptitious phantoms silently awaiting the arrival ( or departure) of a very important guest. 

Thankfully as I walked towards them their cerulean glow seemed to dissipate the closer I become. 

Still having the sensation on the back of my shoulders and head of watchful eyes burning into them, I briskly left the grove into a comparatively sunnier and thus lighter atmosphere of a nearby glade. Whatsoever esoteric event was taking place that afternoon I would never know and perhaps it’s best that way. Some things are best hidden from the tender eyes and minds of mortals.

As One…………. 

I believe numinous and spiritual experience are ever present around us, it simply takes for our perception to be open to it. However most of us go though life largely unaware of the truly exquisite magical nature of our world around us. As empathic / spiritual individuals I feel we are more open to a kind of energetic intimacy which is vastly more profound and sensual.

It may be in form of a spectacular view,  a feeling of oneness with nature or some other occurrence that we intrinsically recognise as something ‘other’ than our more frequent day to day perception. 

And on rare occasions it appears it can be interpersonal :

I hardly know you but when I think of you or if I am graced enough to be in your presence something extraordinary happens to me.  My spirit is given flight, all my senses are heightened seemingly to ensure that in no way  I miss any aspect of your divine self. I bathe in your gaze and become lost deep in your eyes. Any self control I have, has withered away as I respond to your every word and gesture.

To others it would appear to be an intimate friendship but when we are together we are as one, intrinsically in synchronicity in our interaction. The content and context of our verbal and non verbal responses are immaterial, they simply serve the purpose of allowing us to subtly and with pure, intense sensuality mingle our individual energies. Consummating our union with every word, touch and exchange of eye contact. Any sense of time is lost as this is beyond physicality, this is the realm of the eternal soul. There is no beginning neither no end, only this moment for eternity.

Anyone watching would see I was lost to you, like prey willingly hypnotised by an enigmatic predator. As a sailor must have been drawn to his personal death by the seductive call of the mermaid, I too wish to answer my heart and souls call to be as one with you. Even if it meant that I was never to find myself again it would be  small loss to be a part of you, always.

Tat Tvam Asi……?

As many of us go through times of what seems spiritual growth a number of occurrences may happen. 

  – Our human ego becomes transparent ( as do the covert ego led actions of others). That is to say we still have instinctual urges and drives but we see them for what they are, merely actions to defend itself and preserve its fragile integrity.

  – We transcend in our awareness of the world around us, well over and above our previous human egoic based interpretations we had held before. 

  – Paradoxically we may perceive ourselves and the world around us as a vastly interconnected web yet seamless in our shared existence. 

  – Whereas our previously ‘reality’ may have been defined in human terms as the experience of life that is identified with the majority of individuals within that particular society. It may now include much numinous experience. For example of being aware of the mythic aspects of self and society. Of the subtle but substance of dreams,  visions and unexplainable personal epiphanies. 

 

If these instances occur one can easily find oneself feeling isolated and alone as few others share similar experiences. 

These feelings may not be new, especially to those of us who have ’empathic tendencies’. 

For those of us who are ‘energetically sensitive’ ( or empathic), most, if not all of our lives can be spent being misunderstood not only by others but also by ourselves! 
Ironically if we can incorporate our empathic perceptions into an understanding of the nature of existence, we see that we are far from alone. The fact that we can preternaturally sense the energies of people, places and objects suggests that there is an aspect of self in others. As in the  Sanskrit phrase ‘ Tat Tvam Asi ‘, meaning ‘ Thou art that ‘ ( from the Chandogya Upanishad). 

Empathy therefore, if one is able to nurture it effectively can be a springboard into spiritual awareness. Whereas if one sees it as a solely personal, human quality in isolation, it may well become something of a burden. 
In summary, empathic awareness along with spiritual awareness can easily leave our human, egoic selves feeling alone and isolated. Yet paradoxically from a spiritual / objectively empathic perspective the suggestion is that of the unity of all things, of there not being a identifiable separate self.

The Story Thus Far…………….

My previous post was about an epiphany I had a few weeks ago now. I have had requests to elucidate what exactly I experienced, so here goes.
I generally sense that we all grow develop in different ways in terms of spirituality, that is to say that there is no generic right path. However if we are authentic in our approach to life we have the capacity to individuate and thus are more able to fulfill our own potential.
There have been many subjects and experiences historically that have resonated with me although at the time I was not sure as to why. A kind of intuitive nudge I suspect.
These in short have been :
– sense of oneness with Nature
– Neolithic and pre Neolithic history
– ancient sites
– quantum physics
– Taoism
– Buddhism
– aspects of Paganism ( pantheism and pantheism)
– animism
– the works of Carl Jung
– deep ecology
– Hinduism
These are to mention just a few. I have also experienced instances of Advaita and to some extent Kundalini.
I also am very empathic by nature and can sense feelings and energies in people, animals and places.
However until now I had been unable to unite them into a coherent understanding of my own individual vision of the world.
My current suspicions are as follows :
– in primitive early man there was a strong empathic connection with our planet and its flora and fauna
– in sensitive and empathic individuals today this is also the case. Part of our mind is not ours but is found outside in the object. That is to say that intuitively we feel the unity with existence, that we are part and parcel of the the world around us. Thus due to this kind of unconscious link we are able to feel the energies of others and places around us. We recognize that we potentially share the same soul
– this would explain why many spiritually empathic types feel that do not belong to this world as it is currently. Due to Western Societys propensity to subjugate Nature in many of her forms, to live among the general populations casual acceptance of this is uncomfortable to say the least
– some Animistic belief systems ( e. g. American Indian cultures) recognise the Divinity in Nature and treat the world around them accordingly. This tradition and its maintenance would continue to maintain that natural empathic link.

For many people in Western Cultures these feelings are now lost or irretrievable due to the generic dualistic and Cartesian mindset. Hence many people are concerned about the environmental impact it is having upon our planet.
I hope that I have explained myself coherently as it’s rather a tricky topic to write about, mainly because the essence of it all is not about thinking but feeling.
I’m now going to have a read of the Chandogya Upanishad.

Tat Tvam Asi

Where Worlds Meet 

Where Worlds Meet 
Throughout the world there are many places where the meeting of the past, present, future and possibly other dimensions are felt more intensely. These are frequently sites of ancient origin which because of their numinosity are still reverred in some capacity to this day.

In the UK these consist of innumerable stone circles, henges, barrows, hillforts, ancient settlements, holy wells and many others too numerous to mention. 
Being somewhat energetically sensitive I am drawn to these places as they offer an extremely subtle yet tentative connection to other realms and times.

Many theories have been offered as to why these sites are perceived as ‘ special ‘. From leylines to having alignments to the Moon, Sun, stars or other features in the landscape. 

My personal viewpoint is that we, as modern humans with our largely Cartesian / rationalist culture find it nigh near impossible to empathise with our ancestors interpretation of their world. 

But if we are able to become more meditative and ‘ open ‘ then I believe glimpses can be felt or seen from an energetic perspective. 
The flint built walls of the ruined church stand starkly within the henge. Originally sited here to portray the imposition of the new religion upon the ancient beliefs of the indigenous populace. But the henge within which it was constructed had witnessed and was imbued with thousands of years of pagan supplication.
Sitting on a large cold, granite stone just below the medieval church’s tower I observed the dusk descend around me. The last deep amber rays of sunlight cast long shadows across the open landscape of fields, hedges and copses. A slight, ethereal mist hovered precariously over the grassland and the soft banks of the henge and barrow. As if to suggest the gentle rising of past spirits into the silence and security of the evening. Unseen and uninterrupted, they were again free to roam their home land as they once did. 

I could hear the distant hoofbeats of arriving horsemen from an ancient past.

I could hear the long gone church bells toll their last before Nature silenced them for eternity. 
It was as if time had stood still. 

Miniscule stars appeared overhead piercing the blackening velvet of the night sky. 

An overwhelming sense of stillness enveloped the area in and around the henge. 

The intensity of the silence penetrated my core. 

Every animal in the vicinity had seemingly held its breath as if in anticipation. 
My usual human senses no longer individually provided separate feedback from the outside world. 

My physical self had become as one with the world around me, no boundary remained.

There was no longer a separate ‘ I ‘. 

In that singular awareness of non duality, the entire unity of the universe and all therein was laid out in an infinite vision of interconnectedness. 
The deceitful human experience of time was lain to rest with the realisation that all that ever was, is or will be,were there and forever present. The grey veils that had divided the past from the future were simply an illusion.

This place is an organic sancta of Gaia. 

A site of reverence and revelation. Enabling her to impart esoteric knowledge in a way that is timeless and inaccessible from any other source.

Belerion, Cornovia. 

I feel that I have arrived at last in the land of my ancestors. 

The moors, valleys, rocky tors and the eternal voice of the ocean in the background seemed to welcome me back to where my heart and soul truly belonged. 

The landscape wholly rendiscent of a past life I had lived. A life that still seems a hairs breadth away, that is so near to the surface of my consciousness that I could so easily become overwhelmed with reverie. 

Yet I had never before set foot on this land. 

A land woven with myth, magic and majesty intrinsic and inseparable from its landscape. 

A place of groves, stone circles, fogou’s, holy wells , castles, standing stones, ancient settlements and hillforts. Many untouched by man due to the uncompromising nature of its granite hewn soil. 

Though many have sought through research and study to understand the purposes and possible relationships of the myriad of archaeological sites, it remains enigmatic. 

However therein lies the answer. 

Man had a very different interpretation of the world around us in those ancient times. 

The cold, analytical thought patterns borne of the ‘Enlightenment’ and furthered even more by science were still thousands of years away in the future. 

Man was still inextricably connected to Nature. He never saw himself as apart from the world, he was at one with the Earth, skies and stars. A natural and organic reverence for the Universe was an implicit aspect of life. 

A land so old it still reflects the archetypes and legends of primeval man.

Of Gods and Goddesses, of mermaids and piskies. 

Of giants, lost civilisations and alleged visits by the Devil himself. 

One of the keys that may lend to an understanding of this land is clairsentience. 

The feeling of being a small part a unique jigsaw. 

Of fitting in seamlessly with one’s surroundings unlike nowhere I have known before. 

The gnarled granite hills, many crowned with rudimentary fortifications. 

The overgrown aisles of black thorn and hawthorn bushes hiding away groves of healing springs. 

The dark but somehow luminescent fogous, a chamber for intimate communion with Gaia herself.

Stone circles stand testament to the passage of time, still retaining a mystical essence of primeval magic rituals. 

The roar of the ocean as its tempestuous waves throw themselves in anguish against the rocky cliffs. 

Any type of human interpretation is destined to be flawed. 

This is a place to sensuously feel the raw energy of Nature, to become immersed in it. To feel the essential oneness of all creation.

My lungs full of air drawn from the same high breeze that billows around me.

My blood, sweat and tears formed from the same crashing waves thrown upon the beach.

My bones created from the very substance of the earth. 

The fire in my heart borne from the searing sunlight bathing my presence. 

All of my human and spiritual aspects of self are reflected here in the outside world. I do not need to search for meaning or inspiration for I am home. 

Where the pains and joys of birth, life and death are a divine, ethereal journey in themselves.