In the previous post, I discussed the coming into alignment as a result of working with divine guidance. I presented the octopus model (like an invisible giant hand which moves us) with strings with more or less slack representing more or less free will. I suggested that the spiritual journey is about shortening those strings, i.e. going from willfulness to willingness. From ‘my will be done’ to ‘Thy will be done’. From resistance to surrender.
What does the journey feel like on a personal level?
Understanding this journey from the bird’s eye view is one thing. Another thing is to understand what it feels like for the person who is actually going through this shift. Going from the macroscopic view to the microscopic point of view.
This is a transformational journey. Think about tadpole to frog. Or caterpillar to butterfly.
And the journey is very individual for each of us. But still, I think there are some commonalities that can be mentioned:
- Falling away of the old
- Shift to something new
The stages / milestones do not necessarily happen in this order. Awakening can come before or after the falling away of the old.
And the term awakening might mean very different things to different people. While I would define it as the insight that consciousness is prior to everything and that there is a greater invisible force orchestrating events, other people might say that their awakening was that the mind feels very peaceful when it is clear and when there are no thought spirals running amok. Or that developing more self-compassion was the most important game changer for them. It is probably a combination of all of these viewpoints.
Regarding the transformational journey, I’m thinking about fictional example-biographies like the following:
- High-achieving in a stressful career –> burnout with 40 years –> recover with alternative methods of healing –> change jobs to become an alternative healer.
- History of being abused –> breaking point is reached –> recover with spiritual healing –> change jobs to help other victims of abuse.
- Leading a pleasant life, but with the feeling that something missing –> become a spiritual seeker –> separate self falls away –> become a spiritual teacher.
- Coping in life with alcohol abuse –> breaking point is reached –> recover with an AA group –> surrender to a higher power. Life is turned around and lived more in alignment with the soul.
- Leading a sort of ‘normal’ life, but with the nagging feeling that something is wrong with one’s body –> inner coming out as transgender –> outer coming out as trans. And following that, a complete change of one’s life.
- Leading a ‘normal’ run of the mill life with a job and family duties –> have an NDE –> experience a complete turnaround of life’s values and as a result, there are life changes.
My own transformational journey was triggered by rheumatoid arthritis after the birth of my first child which led me to homeopathy which in turn broke my materialistic worldview open. Then it was like a hike up to a mountain with a winding path uphill (- this represented the falling away of the old, e.g. former hobbies and former engagement at work). Afterwards it was like going downhill again, this time following the flow of a river – with more or less resistance from my side (loops at the riverside). This represented the coming into alignment with the new (e.g. sharing my experiences in this blog).
You can read more about my journey here.
So that is what the shortening of the strings in the octopus model can look like for the indivual person. A journey with the falling away of something old and coming into alignment with a new direction in life.
It can be deeply traumatic and heartbreaking.
It can be more or less dramatic with more or less messy upheaval.
It can be done with much resistance, kicking and screaming, or it can be done voluntarily and willingly.
It can be a sudden change or more gradual.
But it is usually transformational. And this transformation is one of the results of working with divine guidance.