Traditional teachers and spiritual emergencies

 

This is something it took me a while to figure out.

When I had my initial opening, which started a quite dramatic kundalini awakening, I initially didn’t know anyone who was even remotely interested in those things.  (I was a hardcore 16 year old atheist in a small town in Norway, so no wonder.) After some years, I did find books that seemed to have been written by people who had a similar realization as what was revealed to me, although I also saw that many – or most – seemed to write about things they didn’t have personal experience with. And that included some traditional teachers.

After 2-3 years, I found and went to the Tibetan Buddhist Center in Oslo and thought I would get help from one of the teachers there, but they didn’t seem to understand or relate to what I was going through. I also talked with several visiting teachers about it, and had a similar experience. On top of that, the advice they gave me – to continue my standard practice – seemed exactly the wrong advice for me. At the time, I needed grounding, while those practices brought more energy into a system already overloaded with huge amounts of energy, they opened up a system already wide open, and they brought the energy up in a system where the energy needed grounding and calming more than anything else.

I now realize that these teachers most likely had very little experience with people who had spontaneous and dramatic openings. They were used to working with people within their tradition, who had followed the progressive practices outlined for them, and had a much more gradual path. I also assume that Tibetans tend to be more grounded – both psychologically (more whole) and energetically – than many westerners are, so they are not so used to dealing with people as ungrounded as I was at the time.

This is just a reminder of the need and importance of researching spiritual emergencies, disseminating information about spiritual emergencies, and – perhaps most importantly – training teachers (in yoga, meditation etc.) to recognize and guide people through spiritual emergencies.

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