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Author Topic: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings  (Read 503 times)

Juniperberry

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Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« on: September 06, 2014, 02:28:46 am »
I've been wanting to post this for a few weeks now but  I'm not even sure what my exact question is, other than just wanting to hear what some people make of it. I know there has to be stuff out there other than the glittery webpages I've found.

So, anyway, as a lot of you have heard me say, last year was a hard year for me. I had a mental breakdown and it's only been in the last couple of months that I've really been able to appreciate the transformation it's had on my inner self.

I chalk a lot of that up as transitioning into more of an evolved Scorpio. (Don't laugh.) However, I have come across blogs and sites where people claim that their own mental breakdowns  were actually spiritual awakenings in disguise. Maybe it's all the same thing? And, of course, there's the multitude of cliches about the darkest hour before dawn etc etc. So I'm perfectly willing to accept that this type of thing is just one of the many natural phases in life.

 
The problem is that I feel like my intuition is shot. A large part of last year was ignited by false intuition, or misread intuition, and I'm not really sure what to make of that considering I've spent my whole life relying on my intuition. Which I can see was probably my emotional and unevolved Scorpio state, and that not relying on my intuition/emotions as much is actually a much healthier, grounded and disciplined way for me. And strangely, I feel more receptive to a sense of the spiritual now then I did before. (I would think it would be the opposite.)

So, blerg. I don't even know what questions I should be asking. Thoughts?
« Last Edit: September 06, 2014, 02:30:04 am by Juniperberry »
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

carillion

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2014, 04:11:06 am »
Quote from: Juniperberry;158199
I've been wanting to post this for a few weeks now but  I'm not even sure what my exact question is, other than just wanting to hear what some people make of it. I know there has to be stuff out there other than the glittery webpages I've found.

So, anyway, as a lot of you have heard me say, last year was a hard year for me. I had a mental breakdown and it's only been in the last couple of months that I've really been able to appreciate the transformation it's had on my inner self.

I chalk a lot of that up as transitioning into more of an evolved Scorpio. (Don't laugh.) However, I have come across blogs and sites where people claim that their own mental breakdowns  were actually spiritual awakenings in disguise. Maybe it's all the same thing? And, of course, there's the multitude of cliches about the darkest hour before dawn etc etc. So I'm perfectly willing to accept that this type of thing is just one of the many natural phases in life.

 
The problem is that I feel like my intuition is shot. A large part of last year was ignited by false intuition, or misread intuition, and I'm not really sure what to make of that considering I've spent my whole life relying on my intuition. Which I can see was probably my emotional and unevolved Scorpio state, and that not relying on my intuition/emotions as much is actually a much healthier, grounded and disciplined way for me. And strangely, I feel more receptive to a sense of the spiritual now then I did before. (I would think it would be the opposite.)

So, blerg. I don't even know what questions I should be asking. Thoughts?

Don't throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Breakdowns usually happen because we *don't* listen to our subconscious screaming at us. Except for cases of completely un-forseeable trauma, people generally know a change is either coming or has to come. But change, especially big change, is hard. So we try to ignore all those hints, warnings, dreams and side-ways glances and give them a different interpretation. We tell ourselves that 'feeling' we got that something wasn't right ...is wrong. We put something else in it's place, something more palatable so even though your brain is semaphoring like mad, we *interpret* those signals for something other than what they are saying.

And then when things go pear-shaped, we think our intuition wasn't working, not that something was clogging up the works.

Your 'intuition' was probably working perfectly well but perhaps you over-intellectualized it, put a different spin on what was (essentially) a right intuition. Now that some of the emotional noise is out of the system, you are seeing things more clearly and that feels like using your 'mind' rather than your 'feelings'.

Sometimes when I've broken a highly decorated piece of china, it's only when I see isolated pieces that I actually *see* the pieces of the picture clearly, I see the minute underpinnings of the pattern and what makes it a picture rather than just a disorganized  blob of lines and colour.

And in life, things always become much clearer when we see a pattern. Maybe now that you are not over-interpreting or interpreting to suit your needs (rather than seeing what is actually there) you can think clearly . And now the intuitions have  that clarity because they are not mussed up with tangential emotion or attempts at alteration - they are coming in true  

And that can feel a a lot like a stronger spirituality.

Of course this could be completely off the mark.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2014, 04:12:18 am by carillion »

Juniperberry

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2014, 04:32:20 am »
Quote from: carillion;158204


Of course this could be completely off the mark.



No, it was really helpful actually.

So, intuiting that something was 'off' could have been right, but intellectualizing what exactly was 'off' could have been wrong?

That sort of falls in line with some lessons I've learned about not trying to control the narrative around me  and instead just allowing whatever it is to play out.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

New-Seeker

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2014, 05:10:34 am »
Quote from: Juniperberry;158206
No, it was really helpful actually.

So, intuiting that something was 'off' could have been right, but intellectualizing what exactly was 'off' could have been wrong?

That sort of falls in line with some lessons I've learned about not trying to control the narrative around me  and instead just allowing whatever it is to play out.

 
I've had a lot of struggles with mental health in the past so I can empathise (in some way) with what you are saying. I've often found that I've mistaken 'wrong' intuition for me just refusing to follow the path that my 'actual' intuition was pointing me towards - does that make sense?

I also think that mental issues can be caused, or partially caused, by a build up of spiritual frustration / stress / not being true to yourself, and a breakdown can be a clearing of the path. Kind of like how a forest fire is very destructive but essential for regrowth.

I really hope your improvement continues :)

carillion

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2014, 05:29:14 am »
Quote from: Juniperberry;158206
No, it was really helpful actually.

So, intuiting that something was 'off' could have been right, but intellectualizing what exactly was 'off' could have been wrong?

That sort of falls in line with some lessons I've learned about not trying to control the narrative around me  and instead just allowing whatever it is to play out.


More or less. You intuited something was wrong, but veered away from what was wrong ( hurts or doesn't fit in with our life at that time) so your brain got to work to come up with a meaning that was what you wanted to hear or at least, what you could deal with.

I always have to remind myself that I am only part of the narrative in life and don't really have as much control as I think I do. Sometimes it's only when something goes kersplat that I realize just how little control I actually had. And we are so driven by internal information we don't always have immediate access to that even what seems under our control , well, isn't so much. Think of P.M.S. . It might seem perfectly reasonable to set your irritating neighbours fence on fire at the time, but a few days later...maybe not:eek:

Juniperberry

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2014, 02:55:43 pm »
Quote from: New-Seeker;158208


I also think that mental issues can be caused, or partially caused, by a build up of spiritual frustration / stress / not being true to yourself, and a breakdown can be a clearing of the path. Kind of like how a forest fire is very destructive but essential for regrowth.

I really hope your improvement continues :)


Thanks.

And, yeah. I definitely feel like I went through Campbell's hero quest or the Scorpio's personal Armageddon. There's just this sense I have that I've been touched by something...I've never been one to have a personal relationship w/deity, I don't have a god-phone, I'm not mystical or crafty. But still, the feeling is there.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Melian Brythonia

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2014, 03:07:44 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;158199
I've been wanting to post this for a few weeks now but  I'm not even sure what my exact question is, other than just wanting to hear what some people make of it.

So, blerg. I don't even know what questions I should be asking. Thoughts?


I just wanted to say that I too struggle with mental health issues - depression and anxiety for me - and I've just been through the hardest six months of my life. I also get the impression that there's a reason I've gone through this but as of yet that hasn't been 'revealed' to me.

So nothing really to add, other that I'm in the same boat and to thank you for posting this thread. :)
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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2014, 04:56:44 pm »
Quote from: OwlHeart;158235
I just wanted to say that I too struggle with mental health issues - depression and anxiety for me - and I've just been through the hardest six months of my life. I also get the impression that there's a reason I've gone through this but as of yet that hasn't been 'revealed' to me.

So nothing really to add, other that I'm in the same boat and to thank you for posting this thread. :)

 
It's a really hard thing to admit to, initially to yourself but then to the world around you but I think it's an incredibly strong thing to do.

I also have quite a bit of experience of helping others through MH issues so if anyone needs an ear during a difficult time please don't be afraid to PM me :)

Juniperberry

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2014, 11:33:45 pm »
Quote from: New-Seeker;158241
It's a really hard thing to admit to, initially to yourself but then to the world around you but I think it's an incredibly strong thing to do.

I also have quite a bit of experience of helping others through MH issues so if anyone needs an ear during a difficult time please don't be afraid to PM me :)

 

Hanging this here...

While I do have some issues with PTSD and OCD this "breakdown" was different then anything I've ever experienced.  While I do think some of my MH issues definitely played a role, I don't think it was the complete story and I'd hate to blame it solely on that.


Here's some literature on it, but before I take it too seriously, I'd really like to see what support these ideas have here and how they relate to M/mysteries.


" I was taking part in some sort of spiritual awakening/shamanic initiation process, which at times mimicked psychosis but in actuality was an experience of a far different order.[...]To quote the noted author Ken Wilber “Though the temporary unbalance precipitated by such a crisis may resemble a nervous breakdown, it cannot be dismissed as such. For it is not a pathological phenomena but a normal event for the gifted mind in these societies, when struck by and absorbing the force of the realization of ‘something far more deeply infused’ inhabiting both the round earth and one’s own interior.”[...]A spiritual awakening is almost always precipitated by a severe emotional or spiritual crisis;[...]When you are spiritually emerging you are literally going through an archetypal death-rebirth experience, which is about nothing other than the death and transcendence of the separate self.[...]We, as a society, need to recognize the existence of genuine spiritual emergences and learn to differentiate them from cases of psychosis."


I've been nervous about posting this because I don't want to come across as thinking I'm sooper spechul, but whatever I went through changed me. I feel like I absolutely walked through the flame and emerged reborn. I feel like I did go through something that on the surface was an MH issue but was also something far deeper than that.

Personally, I really dislike the new age literature on this and would love something a bit more historically and mythically linked. The old folk stories and old superstitions.

I don't mind that MH may have played a part, but I also don't want that to smother any intellectual discussions on the spiritual, mythical, mystical side of it either.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Juniperberry

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2014, 09:47:07 am »
Quote from: Juniperberry;158268

Personally, I really dislike the new age literature on this and would love something a bit more historically and mythically linked. The old folk stories and old superstitions.

 
Well, I found this by chance when I was reading a blog about Kanye West (har har): Satori.

Satori [...]is a Japanese Buddhist term for awakening, "comprehension; understanding".

".... looking into one's nature or the opening of satori";[3] "This acquiring of a new point of view in our dealings with life and the world [is called Satori]

Ch'an expressions refer to enlightenment as "seeing your self-nature". But even this is not enough. After seeing your self-nature, you need to deepen your experience even further and bring it into maturation. You should have enlightenment experience again and again and support them with continuous practice.


I like this because a) it isn't from a Granola and b) Buddhism also has links with IE culture (? not 100% on that) like heathenry does. Anyway, I think early Germanic religions should have some form of their own Mysteries. They can't have been this island in NE that didn't even though they were surrounded by those that did...could they?
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Juniperberry

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2014, 09:55:20 am »
Quote from: Juniperberry;158810
Well, I found this by chance when I was reading a blog about Kanye West (har har): Satori.



For the curious, here's the blog. :)
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Faemon

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2014, 11:55:36 am »
Quote from: Juniperberry;158199
I have come across blogs and sites where people claim that their own mental breakdowns  were actually spiritual awakenings in disguise. Maybe it's all the same thing?


In my opinion: personal experience is always real, especially to the one living through it; but sanity is a societal construct. It's a convention. Some fortunately sane people fit it to a T, and I can imagine that they can also develop spiritual wisdom in their own way. Some of us don't have that privilege. I've spent much of my early life sacrificing personal authenticity for convention, and when the emotional and mental wherewithal to keep that up ran out...I went insane, and spirituality provided the best language so to speak for parsing that new experience. It seemed like the mundane world just ain't here for that. (Well, not that pathologizing or politicizing were completely unhelpful perspectives...just spirituality felt more organic.)
 
Quote
The problem is that I feel like my intuition is shot. A large part of last year was ignited by false intuition, or misread intuition, and I'm not really sure what to make of that considering I've spent my whole life relying on my intuition. Which I can see was probably my emotional and unevolved Scorpio state, and that not relying on my intuition/emotions as much is actually a much healthier, grounded and disciplined way for me. And strangely, I feel more receptive to a sense of the spiritual now then I did before. (I would think it would be the opposite.)

So, blerg. I don't even know what questions I should be asking. Thoughts?

 
Sometimes my intuition becomes just a static white noise too. I do my best to trust that it's just time for grounding, too.
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Juniperberry

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #12 on: September 12, 2014, 12:14:21 pm »
Quote from: Faemon;158817


 
Sometimes my intuition becomes just a static white noise too. I do my best to trust that it's just time for grounding, too.


Yes, to everything.

When is it intuition, and when is it paranoia? When is it a truth, and not just a fear of repeating patterns?
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Juniperberry

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Re: Mental Breakdowns and Spiritual Awakenings
« Reply #13 on: September 12, 2014, 01:14:53 pm »
Quote from: Faemon;158817
 and when the emotional and mental wherewithal to keep that up ran out...I went insane
 

 

(After some thought)

You know, I really like this. I'm not insane, but for a moment I went insane. I took a little trip.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

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