Atheists often make a god of humanistic ideals, and in their zeal perpetuate the same crimes they attribute to faith.
Many spiritual groups don’t welcome dark feelings or dark sentiments in their functions. We don’t have this prejudice on Reflection Island, and our Spiritual Darkness class is to give that its place in our awareness. I would like to start by offering the floor to anyone who would like to share some element of darkness they are dealing with. Feel free and at ease. We don’t judge here.
I’m not feeling very ‘connected’ at the moment. I seem to have lost my connection with ‘spirit’. Oh, I see. Yes, this is a phase of the spiritual life. They call it a dark night of the soul. To use a phrase from Jesus, even he lamented “Father, Father, why have you forsaken me”. Has anyone else felt this?
Oh sure. Yes. It’s not a comfortable place in disconnect.
Our group is called ‘One World, Many Paths’, and at the core of our beliefs is that any peaceful path is welcome, and stands as an equal of any other path. It’s a core value. Many paths are little understood by those who aren’t on them, and are judged quite harshly. We don’t do that.
There are dark paths also, and like Sufism, all paths have a common core. Yes, and we embrace that.
So in feeling disconnected, often we feel disconnected because we have been taught that some parts of life aren’t spiritual, or that something in life is low and beneath the spiritual person. This isn’t true. Spirituality isn’t a goal, and even when you feel lost you still have a spiritual being. You are it, and even darkness is you on your path.
I felt some tears today regarding a story I heard, and it occurred to me that perhaps a good life is a few tears every day. Weeping isn’t necessarily bad, and laughter can be very far from good. The way of the heart is not black and white. Laughter can be when you’re blocking stuff, and trying not to feel. For me, I often bust out into laughter when on the verge of intense rage. The frustration can make me let go.
Fear for me. Yes, laughter can come with fear. The “negative” emotions aren’t evil, though your choices can be wrong.
Gallows laughter that’s sometimes called. It is indeed sometimes called that.
What if the negative emotions are directed at others? Emotion has an object, and actually in my own view admitting you feel negatively toward someone is just honesty. I feel we must face those truths, but your behaviour is still yours to choose. My own path can be characterised as very dark, and the truth is there also. Sort of like the poem “Footprints in the Sand”, even in despair the truth is there. Truth doesn’t stop being truth because our feelings change.
I guess one just wants to feel all ‘love n light’ all the time. That love and light is available, but people usually don’t look for it where it is. Need to feel connected? Step outside for a moment, and don’t bother with people. They are just as lost if not more so than you. Step outside, and look at the sky. Take a deep breath. Maybe notice some birds, or a neighbourhood pet. See the world that is still there despite us. Has it rejected you? I suspect it has not. It is not really in its nature to behave that way. The world is whole. It’s we who see it in parts. It’s human judgement that says “I’m a part of this” or “I’m not a part of that”. Nature is far more even handed. Natures way is that you breath, that you can be aware of it. It’s very welcoming is it not?
It’s said in a passage from the Bible and I paraphrase. It’s been said in other beliefs as well. If there were no people to praise God, even the rocks would utter his praises. I am not Christian, but their old teachings do have some wisdom in them. We did not create spirits or the spiritual way, and it exists whether we think we are big successes or utter failures. Goals and ambitions are human nature, not absolute nature.
For the feeling of disconnection, did anyone as a young child have the notion they could somehow “talk” to animals?
Sure, oh yes, still do. It was natural. And my teddy. Yes, the teddy too.
It’s when they start talking back that’s an issue? Well, yes and no. There is a system of understanding the world called animism, and it isn’t necessarily crazy. In it, anything exists for the same reason you do, and when you were taught that you couldn’t talk to your animal or your teddy, that was a half truth if it’s true at all. Is the communication the same as with people? Of course not. But the fear of being disconnected and rejected by reality, that’s human, and it isn’t true. Are the Japanese psycho because they believe their spiritual relics hold the spirits of their ancestors? That their family lands have their family spirits living there? Even if you embrace no metaphysical view of reality, science shows that nature retains information. Nature is a system of self perpetuating information systems, memory. We live in a world of memories in any view you take.
We feel better when in the presence of nature, so that in itself is nature talking to us. Yes. Biophilia, or human symbiosis with nature, has been established as fact. Falling out of touch with life, like many city dwellers do, has been linked to health problems.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.One World class participants. Thank you!)