We find our way back to the light most easily by letting go of ego-identity and aligning ourselves with our light and free inner nature.
– Kiara Nightingale, p. 127 in Journey Through Transformation, about the dark night of the soul
Somewhat rambling draft follows…..
I have been reading books about spiritual emergencies lately, and found this quote. It’s accurate, in a way, and also a bit misleading and perhaps not so helpful.
Yes, the mind softening or releasing it’s hold on certain core ideas and identifications is part of what can happen during a dark night of the soul. And yes, an aligning with our free inner nature is also a way through it.
It’s also true that we can invite it in, and aim at consciously aligning with it as best as we can, in a variety of ways. (Through prayer, inquiry, meditation, rest, patience, understanding the basics of the process, finding support from a guide experienced with it, and more.)
And yet, that release and alignment is not something we can consciously choose or decide to do. It may well happen, as part of the process. And sometimes, it may seem to happen in spite of ourselves, in spite of our struggle and effort to (a) align consciously with the process and (b) fight it as best we can. (If others are like me, there is often a lot of both going on!) Whatever softening, deepening and maturing comes out of the dark night of the soul is – as so many say – grace.
Also, I am not sure if it’s so much about “finding our way back to the light” as it is a deeper and more felt recognition of darkness too as divine. What appears to our conscious mind as “dark” is also divine, and although we may know that and see it, it’s also a matter of deeply feeling it, including when life goes against everything we wanted, hoped and wished for. Jesus may have consciously and quite thoroughly given his life over to God prior to his crucifixion, and the crucifixion revealed to him what was left. (“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” Luke 22:42)
When life goes against our hopes and wishes, and when “dark” material such as wounds and traumas surface, there is some help in seeing and knowing that too as the divine. And what’s really helpful, and where the invitation is, is to also shift into loving it as the divine (since it already is love), and feeling it as the divine.
Another facet of this is to see through it, see how what appears as “dark” is constructed by the mind, how it’s made up of words, images and sensations, and feeling sensations as sensations.
I am very aware that how I see this will change, especially looking back. Right now, I am still in the middle of it, and it’s difficult to have a good perspective on it or overview.
p. 127 dark night, we find our way back to the light most easily by letting go of eg-identity and aligning ourselves with our light and free inner nature
– not to “find our way back to the light”, but see all as god, release identification with words/images in opposition to what is, finding love for what is
– or, find our way to the light that embraces light and dark, polarities, at a deep felt level (not just view and heart)
– at a deeply felt level, not just view or heart, and when life goes against everything we wanted or wished for (as jesus on the cross)
– can i find “the light” if i look for it in immediate experience, in words, images, sensations?
And yet….. That’s typically not something we can choose or decide to do. It’s not like intentionally flipping a switch and it’s done. Both may happen as part of the process. And we may invite it in or aim at supporting it through various practices such as prayer, inquiry, meditation, rest, patience, understanding the basics of the process, finding support from someone experienced with it, and more. And if it happens, it seems to be more due to
We may invite it in or aim at consciously align with it (as best as we can) through various practices such as prayer, inquiry, meditation, rest, patience, understanding the basics of the process, finding support from someone experienced with it, and more. And if it happens – if there is a release of identification and a more conscious and thorough aligning with our true nature – it seems to happen