Spiritual Symptoms

For me awakening had the following symptoms:

1 I stopped going to church. I couldn’t listen to one more sermon from a dude who has too much religious knowledge and little spiritual experience.

2 Depression. There are things inside you that no longer serve you, and they are dying. This feels like depression. They have to die to make room for God’s grace to enter you like sunshine on a rich garden soil.

3 Joylessness. The very things that I found joy in no longer satisfied my heart. Detachment from old sources of joy made room for the heavenly joys to come, and are still coming.

4 Solitude. I started seeking alone time and avoiding social settings, which was very unusual for me. I used to get so much energy from a group of people. I didn’t realize I was stealing it from them.

5 Food. I hardly ate. I lost 60 pounds.

6 Anger. No. Rage. It came in waves and I blamed my family as the cause. Of course it wasn’t them, it was my own hurt deep within crying out to be healed.

7 I had energy flowing through my brain that felt like pins and needles.

8 Meditation. It became a daily thing. It was the only thing I felt good doing.

9 A loss of meaning or purpose in life, especially work.

10 A deep and strangely consoling trust that all this pain I felt was the loving hand of God in my life.

I’m Gunna Write You a Love Song

First of all I love you.

In my opinion the reason we lose feelings and interest in someone after falling in love with them is because the relationship has reached a deeper level.

At first the other person only sees what we choose to show them about ourselves, we get to present a perfect version of ourselves. How wonderful!

Also in the beginning of a relationship we don’t have any expectations for the other person to fall short of. They haven’t disappointed us yet, or established a habit of disappointing us. There are no grudges or old wounds.

People want to make a good impression on one another, so we are more patient, more thoughtful, generous and kind, not because we actually have these virtues habitually, but because they make us look good to the person we are trying to impress.

People pamper each other with attention in the beginning, overlooking blatant faults, and smother each other with affection, which is what we always crave but seem never to find outside a new relationship. Much of falling in love is just ego stroking and sexual hormones flooding our bloodstream.

Real love knows the weakness and even the darkness of the other and still accepts them. Real love has been hurt by the other and has forgiven them. Real love seeks to see all of the other person, good and bad.

Real love means I don’t have to act or look a certain way to impress you. Real love not only encourages the other to be themselves but actually supports them in doing so!

Real love is messy, painful, blissful, work, joy, and transformative all at once.

Real love is sacrificial, meaning you happily give something up so the other can have their way, even if they don’t repay you for it. Real love doesn’t feel the pain of sacrifice, it feels the joy of giving.

Real love is loyal despite ordinary lulls in the relationship. It is loyal when no one is looking, it is loyal in thought, word, emotion, and action. It is loyal in sickness and in health, in good times and bad, for rich or for poor.

Real love spans lifetimes, and even transcends death itself. Real love is a service, a partnership, a piece of family that you have chosen for yourself rather than being born into.

True love knows that love is sometimes hard, and wants to quit, and admits those feeling to their partner without fear of judgment or reprisal for saying so. True love fights to keep communication channels open, and works hard to say what needs to be said, while hearing what needs to be heard, with an open heart, without anger.

True love is honest not only about where you’ve been or what you were doing, but also honest in sharing deep emotions and fears, and hopes and dreams.

True love is emotionally open, vulnerable, raw and full of risk. True love works hard to let the other know that you still think of them when you are not together.

True love suffers and celebrates. True love laughs and cries. True love gives and receives. True love speaks and listens. True love serves and is served.

True love requires that I change myself rather than demand a single change in my partner. True love understands that there are ups and downs.

True love never dies.

True love is real and it is not exclusive to romantic relationships. True love can exist between any two sentient and emotive beings.

It is a gift of God to be treasured and cultivated, protected and displayed, cherished and valued. Real love has been tested by time and has been strengthened by it.

I love you!

Spiritual Depression

I believe that there is a spiritual explanation for depression, however it may be wisest to learn to treat depression both as a spiritual and medical condition.

I am not a doctor. I don’t know anything about the medical side of depression except for the limited experience I’ve had with a few medications.

I can however share with you my own experience of depression and the role it played in my life.

For me depression was the slow withdrawal of joy from all my activity; the things I used to get so much meaning from were losing their meaning.

This loss of joy made me fall back on some rather poor coping mechanisms which mostly involved a lot of alcohol.

What does this have to do with spirituality?

Detachment. Emotional and mental and physical detachment from everything that is not God, letting go of form, not by rejecting the material world but by transcending it.

God was trying to show me something I didn’t want to see; that I am truly and actually nothing. My deepest nature is nothingness.

All of this stripping away of joy made me angry, depressed, and anxious.

Anger, disgust, depression, and anxiety were the only moods I could swing between. I wallowed inside this negativity for years, thinking myself to be a holy martyr for staying with my family while I was being “victimized” by God.

And that’s exactly what it felt like for me; I was a “victim” of God’s neglect, but I didn’t know he was pulling me away from my addiction to form, to show me that I am nothing.

Humility, patience, kindness, and a lot of meditation brought me to a place where I could not only see what God was showing me, but could accept it fully.

Our truest selves are not made of flesh, but of light. God is drawing you closer to himself, this is the invitation. But to receive something new one must first put down what you are holding.

Right now we are holding on to our material life, not by consumerism, but by thought and desire. The material world consumes our thought and desires, distracting us from the love of God!

There is a way to live a normal looking life from the outside, while living an extraordinary life from within, in perfect companionship with God! This is the invitation.

Depression is a form of death. Let depression do it’s holy work in you (perhaps with a medication to help you through if that is your choice). But you must do so while keeping an open heart.

Depression is only deep suffering without the consolation of offering loving-kindness to everyone you meet without exception or expectation of repayment.

In summery:

God is in spirit, that is where we meet him. To go there we must walk away from form. Accepting that fully is detachment, which feels like depression.

Let depression do it’s holy work of destroying all thoughts and desires that are not centered in God himself, making room for Divine Love to enter in its void.

Heart-Broke

Isn’t it a problem that everybody on the face of this planet wants to be loved, but at the same time no one wants to be loving? If everyone wanted to get paid but no one wanted to spend money that’s a broken economic system. I think our love is broke.