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Shanti

Birthing Pains or Dark Night of the Soul

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Shanti

One friend of mine suggested this experience as "Dark Night of the Soul". But another friend of mine said no, this is different, it's "Rebirth." To quote him:

 

"....Dark night of the Soul, as I understand it, is the death of ones being. I've been offered this death a couple of times, but was to fearful to enter, like I needed to 'walk the talk' first, before my faith which is to act and walk what I already understand to be true, needed to be strengthened.

 

I've been through some very painful events also. As if Life needs us to understand the *why* and not just understand, but to realize that we have to make the right, the true, the moral *decision* on those events, as we understand what this is all about. Like learning to swim in the pool, the river, the sea before we jump head first into the Ocean.

 

We can always ask for help. The good news here is that as soon as we do understand and act (walk the talk) then the whole thing simply seems to disappear!! The other good news, after we walk the talk, is that we become more strengthened in our understanding and *belief* which will ready us for the Dark Night of the Soul...."

 

How my other friend describes "Dark Night of the Soul":

"...."the dark night of the soul," as I understand it, it happens to someone truly trying to know the creator through prayer, meditation and other ways. They get to a point where these things don't bring the feelings of oneness that they once did. Sometimes this can last for years and years. Eventually most make it back to the prayer and meditation working and they also have some new direct knowledge of the Creator. Some say Mother Teresa went through this from the 1940's until near her death...."

 

For a long time I thought of "Dark Night of the Soul", but then I knew it was certainly a death experience. I truly faced death, not just of my physical body, but my spirit. There's just no way to describe the feeling of this. I know when Jesus said "Why has thou forsaken me" that's how it feels. I feel like I went to hell.

 

My totem is Deer. I kept having dreams of my Deer dying a horrible death. I never mentioned this to anyone. My daughter came to me and told me she had a very vivid dream that she saw a trail of dead deers all long the pathway to my door. She said it was gruesome. Then she said she saw a decapitated deer lying at the base of a tree. I know what decapitated symbolizes, just ask the Hindu Goddess Kali with all the heads strung around her neck. Death of the ego. I asked her what season the tree was in. She said it was Spring. I knew then it was a good sign of rebirth and I'd come out a new person and healthy. She also said she saw a live deer in a ditch. I asked what it was doing in the ditch. She said it was just "chillin". I said, okay, yeah I'm in a ditch too, "chillin." lol.

 

Then not too long ago I received a new Totem. He came to me so fiercly that I try to banish it. I posted about this on another forum. Then it dawned on me "Oh! it's a totem! it's a PIG. The boar was with me strongly, and I learned that Pigs medicine is Spiritual Strength for a hard journey. I AM Blessed! Deer is still waiting in the ditch. Need my Boar for this ride!

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Altostrata

Very interesting imagery, Shanti, and the lessons you draw from it.

 

We have a related topic here The Descent Experience

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Shanti

That was a great read! Thank you for posting that link.

 

The Hero’s Journey

 

In the mid-twentieth century, the mythologist Joseph Campbell wrote a book called “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” in which he described a classic mythological story line that can be found in all times and all places.

 

It has several consistent components – the hero is minding his / her own business and initially resists the call to some kind of otherworldly journey. But the transition to an out of this world experience begins anyway, and there are many trials and ordeals. It’s bad. It goes on awhile. According to Campbell, there is no *apparent* help, but, in fact, there is occult help going on the whole time. There is soul-searching, and purification, and even death – temporary death, or partial death.

 

There is some kind of breakthrough; special wisdom or power is achieved. Campbell underscores the fact that, once this happens, the hero might even resist returning to the everyday world. But, once again, occult help guides the hero on the return journey and over the threshold of regular reality, which s/he crosses while retaining his / her special acquisition.

 

This is so cool, as I just finished watching the Documentary last week called "The Heros Journey" with Joseph Campbell. It was a very good show. I saw it on Netflix if anyone wants to see it.

 

I firmly believe we are all going through this experience for the betterment of our souls... if we don't give up and hang onto Hope. One way to get through is Hope itself. I find it very important. Hope and Faith that this is a Divine experience. I was so very spiritual for many years before everything crumbled. I wouldn't have ever thought to take medication 10 years ago. I was a health freak, did yoga, kirtan, drum circles... etc. I studied herbs and homeopathy for years. This is an important part of my journey.

 

For the first year of this experience, I felt like God turned his back on me. I felt betrayed by my Guru, who told me only months before I got sick that I was heading into the best years of my life. I would think "how could he be so wrong?". But now that I'm getting a grasp on the Divine again, I am starting to see the meaning of all this and how it may not feel like the best years of my life, it's probably the most pivitol and important years. I can compare it to being in a cocoon. I feel like I'm the caterpillar completely turned to mush before I can be a butterfly. I think "It must be painful being liquified like that".

 

Even in Christianity, as I said earlier, Jesus on the Cross asked God "why have you forsaken me?" and then he went to hell to preach to the souls there.

 

It's all in the myths, legends and religions. I should actually see this as my "birth"day and welcome it. That's kinda hard to do though. But I will try.

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Roads

Hmm, I relate so much, even if I haven't went through the half of your suffering. Sometimes, when the pain and the despair are so intense and that I get mad, I shout the exact same words: what have you forsaken me? I had developped a kind of connivence with God (just like that, in a naturaly way, although I am not of the religious kind at all), a kind of old-friends familiarity with him. Sometimes I think that this is delusional, or unilateral, or highly presomptuous, but, this is there in me so... at least this would be a harmless delusion. Maybe I need it to stick. Whatever. It turned so bad that I have this horrific feeling of God having turned his back to me, having forsaken me. This is excruciating.

 

The thought I stuck on was that I was on gestation. But, there again, it turned so bad that I have more of the feeling that it is an absurd extermination. But I guess this is part of the game. If descent there is, there must be destruction of any hope and any tiny comfort, for it would be like dismantelement and utter dispossession. So the forsaken feeling would be part of the game... hey, that's a bit cheering.

 

I am quite prone to believe in the rebirth. But I fear this is some desperate attempt to find comfort too. But this is still possible. Who knows? (But why the **** should I have to rebirth, if this is the underlying process, for I don't feel up to the scratch at all. I know me. There is too much impurity and pragmatism in me. So, presently, I don't manage to draw a meaning from what is happening to me But for sure, you do look like being underwenting a metamorphosing process. You have a kind of benevolent and refreshing aura. I can see some of the glare of your butterfly.

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Barbarannamated

I've had more than a few bad (not horrible or abusive) experiences in the last 10 yrs when reaching out trying to find that elusive 'personal relationship w God' that several of my friends have been 'reborn' by. Have gone to several nondenominational churches in SoCal while also searching for that 'community' I'v been been yearning for. Yikes!! Bad idea!

Then, just this past summer, I decided to try a Buddhist temple in Los Angeles. Went to a meditation class and 'sermon' led by young, attractive monk who seemed soooo familiar to me. I looked at his name on the program and recognized it as (out of work) soap opera actor who was on Dancing w Stars. He was tellingg me how to live my life, handle conflict (avoid it), etc. I could only laugh at the absurdity of it all and realize it was yet another lesson to look inward, trust myself--something I've always struggled with.

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Shanti

Bar, I can totally relate. I stay away from religion myself. I'm actually an ordained minister but I stay away from religion lol. I use my ordination for my practice as a Spiritual Counselor. I follow the Path of my Heart and that goes through the golden thread I see in most religions, but not all the doctrine. So far, the only church that seems okay to me is the New Thought Churches. I don't regularly attend, but sometimes when I feel a need to connect with others spiritually in community like that I will go to one in my town. They're often called "Science of the Mind" and "Church of Religious Science". They are more about how we can heal ourselves from within and not look to an outer savior.

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Shanti

Btw, Religious Science and Science of the Mind are NOT the same thing as the religion of Scientology.

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