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    • #18392
      Paul met Debbie

      In issue #14 of the great 31-days-of-CF – series currently running on this website and forum, Shannon Miller shares going thru some dark periods in life and how she managed to survive, with the support and love of her husband Jason, medication and counseling.

      The question asked to our CF community by Jessy Madrigal Fletcher, this website’s social media content manager, reads: Do you experience dark periods and how do you manage them?

      Let me expand on this a bit, as this weeks Sunday Morning contemplation.

      “I” have experienced some dark periods indeed.  Although I was never heavily identified with personal drama because of my health, when I was a young adult, the transition from high school (living a sheltered life at my parents home) to university life (living in a big city on my own) did not go well at all.  I was not prepared for this and I got very depressed with what I thought was “me” and with “the world out there”. My severe state of depression, although recognized by a fine psychiatrist after a year, alas was not accepted by my family and I lost my entire support system as a result of that within a few  months, which of course added to my perceived utter misery.

      It took me two years of continued darkness and old-school analytic Jungian therapy to go beyond this internal torture. This was a time before anti-depressants were invented, and only the “cold turkey” method was available. I had to surrender resistance and to learn that this was indeed an illusion of my mind only, and not the breakdown of my real self and the world. On the contrary, after working this out I re-emerged as sort of newly born from this and had lost a lot of ego/mind.

      Later in life the rest of my personal illusions broke down too, after experiencing some other calamities like the unexpected tragic ending of my first marriage of twenty years. Surviving and accepting this as well, two years after that my last identifications vanished and I “fell awake”, shortly after meeting Debbie. My ego lost all power of separation and I  just stopped experiencing reality as a separate entity. What remained, is now for the past seventeen years living in harmony with all that is, with no resistance to what ever arises, together with Debbie who also came to the dropping away of all bondage and illusion.

      What is perceived by the mind as darkness and disaster, and causes deep and intense suffering, often turns out to be the call of universal Love to accept what so far has been unrequited love. Surrendering to that call is grace. It’s often the only way to go, and it takes only one step. Mostly we are not willing or able to take this step unless it is really the only one left to make, when the thinking mind runs out of its fake solutions.

      This understanding has been communicated  by the Indian Hindu philosopher Shankara around the year 800, and earlier between the years 28 and 31 by the words of the Galilean Hebrew  philosopher Yehosua of Nazareth, who said “The Kingdom of the Heaven  is within you”. Later he became known as Jesus, and even later as Christ. Much earlier the message can also be found in the Indian Upanishads (the Vedic scriptures) as “Tat Tvam Asi” (That Thou Art), pointing us back to our real source of Being. It is a lesson seldom understood in the Western post-Cartesian world and even less often applied, for the thinking and separating personal mind thinks this is only mumbo jumbo (while in fact, this is what the mind is itself).

      Shankara said:

      “The World is an illusion – Only Love* is real – Love is the World” .

      The one who is able to work out this seeming contradiction by realizing it beyond the thinking mind, vanishes in Oneness and returns to the Source, where light and darkness are no opposites any more. This is called enlightenment,  but I prefer to call it liberation, which is freedom from the known.

      Have a free Sunday!

    • #18393
      Paul met Debbie

      * He used the word Brahman, which is Sanskrit for the highest universal principle, the Source of all being. For me, this is Love.

      • #18420
        Paul met Debbie

        It’s now a Tale on our website, with some references to sources and a  beautiful picture. You can download here.

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