As my spiritual journey takes me into the higher echelons of the awareness of unconditional love, it also takes me deeper into the depths of my own darkness. I sense I rise into the former by descending into the latter, for one reveals the other.
The increases in the awareness of unconditional love possess a flip side. They expose the infirmities and afflictions of my soul until I’m left feeling completely undone. Where all I can do is breathe. In riding the relentless whirlwind into my own depravity, I wonder is this normal? How after all these years of walking with the Spirit of Truth, and with the awareness he has given me is it possible to descend into such depths of despair, despondency, and discouragement? The answers come as the clouds clear and I realize these tough days are a part of the journey.
To traverse an honest, real and soul altering journey, it’s necessary to travel into these shadow places of my soul that I’ve spent much of my life running from, hiding from and hiding from others for the shame I feel in them. In those places reside the seat of my weaknesses, insecurities, imperfections, and all that makes me feel unlovable.
I gave up directing my soul journey a long time ago and put it into the hands of the Spirit of Truth. He reveals to me splendor upon splendor that is beyond amazing to behold, and yet he also takes me into such depths of darkness. These descents often come upon me as an unexpected torrent as I come head to head with various levels and forms of my illusions, lies, fears, insecurities, sadness, depravity, and cruelty. Though traversing these depths create very tough days, facing the depths keeps my journey honest and from the entrapment of superficial spirituality. Ironically these trying days take me into a deeper awareness of unconditional love. They reveal to me what it means to give and receive this love in the realm of faith, and in the realm of substance.
The deeper my faith, the deeper I go into these places, which at first you would expect the opposite. I wrestle my ill beliefs, lower mind, illusions, and lies, all that challenges my expanding faith. Most of my “stuff” is buried deep. Thus the deeper I go, the more difficult the encounter until all has faced the light carried in my faith of an unfailing love. It’s part of the immortal light penetrating my entire soul, thus the entire human soul. For once I see my own state as a self-determined soul, I see every other soul with a deeper and greater compassion and love.
Someone once stated that unless you are willing to go all the way in a soulful life journey, it is better not to begin at all because those who walk honestly face all their Goliaths in the midst of all their weaknesses. The journey requires a steadfast faith that in the end the soul’s hunger for divine truth and unconditional love will be fulfilled. True spiritual practices are raw and real and are beyond mindless ritual, conformity to pre-determined thought or anything pre-determined for that matter. Though they can sooth they soul, they also tear open the soul with the purpose to let in the eternal light and create something new. It’s a journey where the Spirit of Truth is your guide, and you go wherever he takes you, high or low.
I find my spiritual guide along this journey, the Spirit of Truth, only takes me into these depths when I have the corresponding faith to face them head on and move through them. For you only face what you can handle, though it doesn’t feel like it in the moment. You feel you are at your breaking point because you are breaking. Sometimes surviving these moments is just that, you simply survive to the next moment. If our journey is an honest one; sincerely seeking after divine truth and unconditional love, then we will receive the faith we need to carry us through every whirlwind, every dark abyss, and every soul torrent.
Why journey at all if it is so difficult? Why not live in the bliss of ignorance keeping everything buried? For me, through this process, my desires are re-shaped by the hand of the Creator; desires that enable me to connect to him in an immortal oneness. I sense this journey, every high and low, is part of becoming a soul who can be one with his spirit, thus, a soul who can express the boundless and infinite potentials of divinity. A deep work is being accomplished in my soul from something beyond me yet connected to me. The Spirit reaffirms over and over that this path of dying and rebirth is the way to immortality and the greatest path I could ever traverse in this brief existence. Despite all the wrestling in my soul, the Spirit of Truth continues to say; this is the way, just keep walking in it.
The mercy of the Designer of the journey is that often the morning light brings relief. Sometimes I know if I can just make it through the day, tomorrow will be better. I stay in the inner struggle long enough to gain whatever is necessary and what that experience intended to reveal, give or remove. I stay long enough to gain the awareness that once again the only answer to every question, problem, or heartache is unconditional divine love. And only a oneness with the divine spirit of the true God fulfills that answer. And he is the only one to manifest that oneness. And thus my desire for both grows stronger and more consuming.
So if we struggle with ourselves, good. We are getting somewhere. But we must remember that the Spirit of Truth is in our corner. We are not facing anything alone though that is how we feel in those boxing matches. As we pass through the core of our deepest darkness, in the end we encounter the heart of God. He is found beyond our soul and thus, at least for me, going through all the grit and grim of my soul is part of the journey of getting to Him, the essence of truth and love; my true Source and Center. And along the way, I learn his love is the answer to everything, and that is worth everything.