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Offlinebackfromthedead
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: spiritualemerg]
    #6729425 - 03/30/07 09:40 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Thank you so much spiritualemerg. I actually came across your blog months ago and it has been a blessing, truly. I just wish I had before my ordeal. Would have really helped me stay centered in the chaos.


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OfflineNiamhNyx
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: spiritualemerg]
    #6729431 - 03/30/07 09:41 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

There are too many lost people who try and force thier way through spiritual transcendence without first developing basic physical and mental health and processing thier anxieties and neurosis. Ungrounded, neurotic people with massive ego complexes about how spiritually advanced they are are certain, in the least to stay absolutely stuck right where they are, and at worst - to make themselves sick (even psychotic) and even more disconnected and ungrounded. As I see it, it is vital to seek a healthy ego and a healthy body before seeking any kind of transcendence. Then again, transcendence isn't a goal of mine. I'm more interested in interconnection. A strong body, a strong yet flexible mind, communicative and supportive social relationships, and direct emotional honesty seem like they'd be a good foundation for any depth of exploration. Such goals require a vast development of awareness and intention themselves.

I'd also like to stress that I have been an extremely ungrounded, and neurotic person in the past and have spent years struggling with anxiety, depression and numerous repressions that I've largely emerged from. From my experience I have discovered the importance of ordering areas of personal development appropriately, so as not to create layers of denial around ones state of being, a construct about ones "superior spiritual development". I did that for awhile, but I couldn't believe myself. I had the constant fear that everyone could see right through me and knew I was full of shit. Breaking down falseness is vital to becoming open to true experience.

I do believe that a psychotic break can be an important experience, forcing one to face things that they have repressed. It is important never to diminish the value of any experience, but rather to dig into it, to allow oneself to feel it fully and to listen to its lesson. R.D. Laing talks about this in reference to schizophrenia, and about how this journey may be supported. "The Politics of Experience" is an important read for anyone interested in the subject.


Edited by NiamhNyx (03/30/07 09:53 PM)


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Offlinebackfromthedead
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: NiamhNyx]
    #6729555 - 03/30/07 10:29 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Agreed. Its like a character, I like to live out this reality here.


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Invisiblespiritualemerg
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: backfromthedead]
    #6729722 - 03/30/07 11:35 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

backfromthedead: Thank you so much spiritualemerg. I actually came across your blog months ago and it has been a blessing, truly. I just wish I had before my ordeal. Would have really helped me stay centered in the chaos.

lol. I wish I had it before my ordeal too, but if I had, the experience wouldn't have been the same. For now, those blogs exist as a means of challenging Western thought as related to "psychotic episodes" and "schizophrenia". Most people don't seek them out prior to their experience because these kind of experiences don't tend to be planned in advance. However, like you and me, they often seek answers afterward.

NiamhNyx: There are too many lost people who try and force thier way through spiritual transcendence without first developing basic physical and mental health and processing thier anxieties and neurosis. Ungrounded, neurotic people with massive ego complexes about how spiritually advanced they are are certain, in the least to stay absolutely stuck right where they are, and at worst - to make themselves sick (even psychotic) and even more disconnected and ungrounded.

The trouble as I see it is that these kind of experiences can be afforded a degree of "specialness" and "status" and the ego, which may be fragmented, fractured, bleeding and broken, can still latch onto that "specialness". To a certain extent, I consider it to be part of the process, perhaps more so in Western culture for two reasons: #1 We're not as familiar with the transcendant; and #2 Those around us are not as familiar either. Family, friends, medical personnel -- their response can have a profound impact on how we perceive and interpret our experience.

It's very helpful for an individual who has gone through such a process to be able to connect with others who have gone through similar experiences. This helps to ground and "normalize" the process; it helps to place it within context. There was a time when I did not know of a single other person who had ever gone through such an experience. It is intensely isolating to believe you have had an experience that no other human being, living or dead, has ever had. I consider the internet to have been a friend in this regard, without it I never would have found others like myself.

NiamhNyx: I do believe that a psychotic break can be an important experience, forcing one to face things that they have repressed. It is important never to diminish the value of any experience, but rather to dig into it, to allow oneself to feel it fully and to listen to its lesson.

Wise words.


Music of the Hour: Let Me Fall


.


--------------------
~ Kindness is cheap.  It's unkindness that always demands the highest price.

Blogs: Spiritual Emergency | Spiritual Recovery | Voices of Recovery | A Jungian Approach to Psychosis


Edited by spiritualemerg (03/31/07 12:08 AM)


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OfflineNiamhNyx
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: spiritualemerg]
    #6733388 - 04/01/07 01:04 AM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Quote:

The trouble as I see it is that these kind of experiences can be afforded a degree of "specialness" and "status" and the ego, which may be fragmented, fractured, bleeding and broken, can still latch onto that "specialness". To a certain extent, I consider it to be part of the process, perhaps more so in Western culture for two reasons: #1 We're not as familiar with the transcendant; and #2 Those around us are not as familiar either. Family, friends, medical personnel -- their response can have a profound impact on how we perceive and interpret our experience.




Absolutely. A person who's lost touch with themselves, and does not trust thier experience or percetive/interpretive faculties, may either fear that they are crazy or latch onto an experience of a significantly altered mode of percieving as special (superior), thus justifying thier person. I might also add that nearly all members of our culture lose themselves, and become false. If our families weren't neurotic, there's always highschool, and the competitive work world once that's done with.

We live in a culture that does not recognize that experience simply is, but rather one that attributes extremely stratified degrees of value to it. One ought to feel, percieve, live, in a very small and predetermined manner and if one doesn't, there is something psychologically wrong. This gives us little space to explore, and makes it difficult to attribute a sense of validity to divergent experience.

In such a state, I found myself attempting to skip too many vital points of focus, and arrogantly percieving myself as having some seed of something that lacked in others. On one hand, I needed that to survive. I needed to believe that there was something incredible lying dormant in me that made me advanced enough that I didn't need to do the gritty work. I spent precious time ignoring the need to eat well, to love my body, to learn to communicate, to care and be cared for, to breathe... Thankfully I didn't get stuck long, and I didn't destroy myself in the process. I likely would have had a psychotic break had I not found a way through, I certainly was having some bad-trip-like panic attacks.

Quote:

It's very helpful for an individual who has gone through such a process to be able to connect with others who have gone through similar experiences. This helps to ground and "normalize" the process; it helps to place it within context. There was a time when I did not know of a single other person who had ever gone through such an experience. It is intensely isolating to believe you have had an experience that no other human being, living or dead, has ever had. I consider the internet to have been a friend in this regard, without it I never would have found others like myself.



The internet is certainly a bountiful source of information, and a valid means of discovery when one is extremely isolated. It is of course VITAL to make connections with flesh and blood people, and to be in the world. That has been one of the most important elements in my own growth, although I won't deny the value of connections I've made and things I've learned because of the accesibility of information online.


Edited by NiamhNyx (04/01/07 01:09 AM)


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Invisiblespiritualemerg
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: NiamhNyx]
    #6734595 - 04/01/07 01:32 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Two sites I came across that are worthy of sharing...

Quote:



Insanity or Enlightenment

R.D.Laing, an unorthodox psychiatrist, emphasised the link between the mystic and the schizophrenic. He stated: "The mystic and the schizophrenic find themselves in the same ocean, but whereas the mystic swims, the schizophrenic drowns."

I concur wholeheartedly with this observation regarding the connection between the mystic and the ‘schizophrenic’, but point out, the schizophrenic can learn to swim ... given the opportunity. Often, however, the ‘schizophrenic’ is dragged under by the very people sent in to help.

Unlike the monks who prepare rigorously and systematically to attain and receive enlightenment, those who experience schizophrenia, I believe, have enlightenment thrust upon them. Because there is no disciplined framework to work from or with, this imposed enlightenment can be enormously difficult to cope with.

I regard the next step in human evolution to be that of enlightenment and my feeling is that schizophrenia is most certainly an expansion of our psychic capacity. I go further, I regard schizophrenia as not only a personal transformation, but also as part of a global one. A metamorphosis that the sea of humanity is undergoing to lead us into an age of intuition and vision. This may sound prophetic, but as a kindred spirit once remarked to me,

"Where would the Old Testament prophets be today if they lived in our times and in our culture?"

The answer should not need spelling out ...... in our psychiatric institutions.


Source: One in a Hundred







Quote:



"Only when you have experienced the lowest of the lowest
are you then humbled enough to appreciate and experience
the Highest of the Highest."

Spencer John Perdriau



Spencer, is a real life success story of triumph over the tragedy of mental illness. Having fully recovered from schizophrenia, he has reclaimed his well-being and has enjoyed “normal” regular health for many years now, symptom free and side-effect free from any relapse or trace of the illness.

Since his recovery, he has devoted the last seven years to writing in the field of transpersonal psychology, focussing on research and development about the subjective nature of mind and consciousness, complimenting the ancient wisdoms from both Eastern and Western traditions to his new insightful approaches to mental well-being. Having written eight books, awaiting publication, and another five in draft on the shelf, his very first work was passed on to a major figure in the self-development industry who generously approved of his unique insights about the essence and ultimate nature of reality.


Source: Spencer John Perdriau







.


--------------------
~ Kindness is cheap.  It's unkindness that always demands the highest price.

Blogs: Spiritual Emergency | Spiritual Recovery | Voices of Recovery | A Jungian Approach to Psychosis


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InvisibleIcelander
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: spiritualemerg]
    #6734855 - 04/01/07 03:17 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Big fan of Laing.:thumbup:


--------------------
"Don't believe everything you think". -Anom.

" All that lives was born to die"-Anom.

With much wisdom comes much sorrow,
The more knowledge, the more grief.
Ecclesiastes circa 350 BC


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Invisiblespiritualemerg
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: Icelander]
    #6734984 - 04/01/07 04:05 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

A story about Laing -- my favorite one actually...

Quote:


As the story goes Laing had been invited to tour the psychiatric wing of a new hospital. During the tour, he was invited to peer through the window of a locked door. When he did, he saw a young girl. She had been stripped naked and was rocking back and forth. According to his tour guides (her doctors) she had not spoken to anyone in the four months since she’d been placed behind the locked door. "Can you think of anything to help her?" inquired one of the doctors. Laing promptly stripped himself naked, entered the room, and began rocking in time to the rhythm of the girl -- within twenty minutes, she was speaking to him.

In thick Scottish brogue, Laing is reputed to have later quipped to the team of assembled experts, "I can’t believe none of you thought of that.






I like that story because it demonstrates so very well how some "experts" will hold the schizophrenic at arm's length, as if they're dirty and foul and their foulness might be catching. But Laing understood that there was a human being in behind that locked door.


Music of the Hour: Beyond the Invisible


.


Edited by spiritualemerg (04/03/07 09:31 PM)


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InvisibleOrgoneConclusion
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: Icelander]
    #6735012 - 04/01/07 04:15 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Quote:

Icelander said:
Big fan of Laing.:thumbup:






Big fan of Lansing


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InvisibleIcelander
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: OrgoneConclusion]
    #6735017 - 04/01/07 04:18 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Lansing Mich? I grew up close to there.;)


--------------------
"Don't believe everything you think". -Anom.

" All that lives was born to die"-Anom.

With much wisdom comes much sorrow,
The more knowledge, the more grief.
Ecclesiastes circa 350 BC


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Invisibleredtailedhawk
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: spiritualemerg]
    #6735184 - 04/01/07 05:11 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

Nice quotes and links. Thanks for sharing spiritualemerg. It looks interesting.

I would like to add one more quote here, because I feel it is important that we keep a balanced middle ground and realize that if we spiritualize all psychotic states we are doing the same mistake as the mainstream psychiatry by pathologizing them all. The truth is probably in between.

"However, it also seems necessary to issue a word of caution. Episodes of nonordinary states of consciousness cover a very wide spectrum, from purely spiritual states without any pathological features to conditions that are clearly biological in nature and require medical treatment. It is extremely important to take a balanced approach and to be able to differentiate spiritual emergencies from genuine psychoses. While traditional approaches tend to pathologize mystical states, there is the opposite danger of spiritualizing psychotic states and glorifying pathology or, even worse, overlooking an organic problem." –Grof, Spiritual Emergency


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"Who are you who live in all these many forms? You're death that captures all. You too are the source of all that's gonna be born. You're glory, mercy, peace, truth. You give calm a spirit, understanding, courage, the contented heart."


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Invisiblespiritualemerg
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: redtailedhawk]
    #6735361 - 04/01/07 06:18 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

redtailedhawk; I feel it is important that we keep a balanced middle ground and realize that if we spiritualize all psychotic states we are doing the same mistake as the mainstream psychiatry by pathologizing them all. The truth is probably in between.

Valid points, hawk. Grof presents a brief set of guidelines that can be helpful here: Spiritual Emergence or Psychiatric Disorder. A breakdown of various forms of spiritual emergency can be found here: Forms of Spiritual Emergency

It can be helpful to have some insight into the underlying cause of the psychoses. I put a list together one day for the fun of it and I think I stopped somewhere in the range of 37 "known" causes ranging from cat poop to kundalini to cough syrup. Unfortunately it demonstrates only too well that "science" has yet to determine any valid cause for schizophrenia.

It must also be born in mind that the odds for recovery are substantially lower in developed nations than they are in developing nations; three studies by the WHO have revealed that developing nations have substantially higher rates of recovery -- as high as 90% in some places. In spite of this, the number of Western trained clinicians I encounter who are under the impression that there is no chance of recovery is staggering, however a rare few do allow that the recovery rate can vary from 10% - 35%.

There are two notable exceptions that I'm aware of. The first is John Weir Perry a Jungian trained psychiatrist who had an 85% recovery rate. The second is Jaakko Seikkula a clinical psychologist in Finland who has recovery rates in the same range. Both clinicians relied on forms of talk therapy and like Laing, worked to develop a relationship with the individual undergoing the experience. For most individuals in this culture however, neuroleptics, mood stabilizers, and antidepressants are the first-line of preferred treatment. Refusal to take the drugs can be interpreted as an indication that you present a danger to yourself -- I have known of individuals who were not released from hospital until they consented and others for whom court-ordered treatments were mandated.


.


--------------------
~ Kindness is cheap.  It's unkindness that always demands the highest price.

Blogs: Spiritual Emergency | Spiritual Recovery | Voices of Recovery | A Jungian Approach to Psychosis


Edited by spiritualemerg (04/01/07 06:24 PM)


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OfflineNiamhNyx
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Re: Psychosis/fucked up through meditation/yoga/pranayama [Re: redtailedhawk]
    #6735371 - 04/01/07 06:21 PM (14 years, 9 months ago)

spiritualmerg: that's a great story about Laing. The man is an inspiration, and a big part of what draws my interest towards practicing psychotherapy. Although anthropology is a pretty major draw as well.

redtailedhawk: thanks for posting that quote, I was thinking the same myself and couldn't possibly have articulated it better.


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