Guidance from spirit can appear through various input channels like an inner voice, signs and symbols, physical sensations, and also through emotions.
When I was faced with a situation where I felt exploited, I was angry very often over many years. It took me a while to acknowledge that I could neither suppress nor ignore the anger and that it might be appropriate to remove myself from the situation which caused this upset. Here, I had used the emotion as guidance about what the best course of action would be. After doing this, the anger lessened. Below the layer of anger, sadness appeared instead.
I have to be aware of the temptation to judge and suppress emotions, for example, because it is thought to be ‘unspiritual’ to feel something like anger.
Generally, emotions must be felt and then let go. It is unhealthy to suppress them. This would be like a splinter in a wound covered by a band aid. Here one would remove the splinter and the pus first. Only then healing could occur.
Why do we need to feel emotions? Because they have a valuable side to them. For example, anger about injustice or being exploited may encourage me to act, to speak up and to set boundaries, for example. Anger can become unhealthy, however, when there is a repeated spiral running in my mind without any action. For other emotions like sadness, fear, and shame it is similar. There is a healthy side to them (like the cleansing power of grief), but drowning in them can become unhealthy.
The challenge is to allow the emotion without suppressing it, but also without drowning in it. In order not to drown in it, it is helpful to stay in the witness place as the emotion comes up. The witness place is that spacious awareness that watches and allows anything to come up and be felt without judgment.
Emotions come in layers. For example, below anger, there can be sadness (or it can be the other way round). And below the sadness, there can be fear. I found it helpful to stay with the emotion to uncover the underlying layer.
I have to be aware of the tendency to cover an uncomfortable emotion up with another one which feels better temporarily but is even unhealthier (to cover up anger with revenge, for example).
It can be challenging to name and interpret the emotions correctly. Be aware of the danger of misinterpreting emotions.
- Tears can be tears of victimhood and sadness. Or they can be tears of joy and relief when coming Home.
- Excitement and the urge to do something can be misinterpreted as anxiety.
- A pause between waves of activity can be misinterpreted as apathy or depression.
- The aspect of humility in reverence and surrender or submission to divine will can feel similar to the humility aspect in remorse or repentance.
- There is a difference between quiet joy and excitement.
Sometimes it is appropriate to act on an emotion and sometimes not. Anger can be an indicator of a situation of injustice and the urge to act on it can be appropriate. But repeatedly dwelling on anger in the mind is pointless and unhealthy.
For emotions as guidance, when we are in alignment with the higher self, there is joy. When we are off track, we have given in to fear and then there is guilt, discontent, or a low-level depression. (But not every guilt is a sign of being off-track. Sometimes, there can be guilt imposed on us by society for unusual behavior. But this would not be a sign of being off-track.)
When we are on track, fear can be present. It is uncomfortable but it is not a sign that something is wrong. The spiritual journey becomes about continuously walking through the rings of fear and expanding our comfort zone.
Beware of the fact that fear can mask as apathy, confusion, procrastination, or self-sabotage. It can also come as a wolf in sheep’s clothing and mask as over-responsibility or a sense of obligation and duty (when it is really attachment in disguise).
More information on divine guidance can be found in the divine guidance workshop script here: