When we get into spirituality, it can be from love for reality and love and life.
It can also be to escape something. And that compulsion to escape can take different forms and be more or less strong.
I was reminded of this when I heard of someone who was interested in breatharians. (People who apparently live on sunlight and breath alone, and no food.) The first that comes up for me around that is:
What do you hope to get out of it?
What do you want to escape? Which feeling here and now? What in your life? Where is the threat?
With the breatharian fascination, it’s relatively easy to spot since it’s unusual and a bit extreme. It’s often pretty clear that he or she is trying to escape something, including their body and the feelings (and perhaps trauma) found there.
And this may be there in any spiritual seeking. There is often a component of wanting to escape something. And that can be very helpful to look at.
With breatharians, I assume some – perhaps quite a few – are scam artists. For all I know, it’s possible that it’s genuine in some cases, and that would be an interesting topic for science. And for me, it’s not really that interesting either way.
My fascination is more around finding love for myself and life, inquire into sticky and painful stories, live in a way that supports life, and be as good steward of my life as I can. And there too, there may be something I wish to escape (I know there is), which in turn creates a slight compulsion. It’s good to look at.
What do the breatharian fans mirror back about me?
(a) I am better than them. More evolved. More clear. More down to earth. More practical. More going to the essence.
(b) I am no different from them. I too use spirituality – my own form of spirituality – to escape something. To escape discomfort. Trauma.