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The Nazarene

The Nazarene

People wonder why after all my experiences, both good and bad within evangelical Christianity that I don’t ditch the Nazarene for good and just become a deist or theist. Some suggest that I should become a Buddhist, Hindu or New Age guru and have done with it.

I must admit that some days, having just encountered the harshness and judgement of a supposed Jesus fan, I do consider taking such an existential leap. It’s very difficult at times hanging in there with a somewhat dysfunctional gang of folk who’re toxic to one’s psyche-soul. And yet when I’m about to jump, Yeshua usually pops into view, in the hidden caverns of my mind. One also alone and wounded by the religious barbs of believers in the God of Israel, the Nazarene stands and calls me aside.

‘Now you understand my brother, now you understand’.

I can’t leave one who has been so misunderstood and misrepresented by the tribe who go by his name. Thankfully the Galilean isn’t franchised to those dysfunctional expressions of the Christian faith that kill through their words and pseudo-superiority. Yeshua bar Yosef isn’t contained in a belief system, no matter what the guardians of cultural and theological boxes tell us.

No, the Nazarene is free and offers his followers freedom from ego that many haven’t yet taken him up on. The ‘taking up of his cross’ isn’t some macabre act or death wish but a rapturous call to freedom. Only ego suffers. As we  let it fall into the ground and die, we shall find a new Self step forward to take its place. The hidden treasure that’s lain buried under the topsoil of ego and its fearful ways.

The Galilean is seen by many as a quality controller, a ‘Lord’ who sits on high and keeps a beady eye on our religious observances. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Spirit Breath of the back to life Jewish rabbi is dancing among the sons and daughters of man. A liberator here to liberate, even from the oppressive power of his supposed religion, and all others to boot.

For many within Christendom, Yeshua is the blood sacrifice that paid for our sinly dysfunction. This in my earlier Evangelical incarnation was my raison d’être. I owed ‘this bleeding saviour’ the haunted one who looked at me suffering and sad, hanging on his Roman gibbet. ‘It should have been me up there,’ I reasoned, following the standard Evangelical line in disciple motivation. Claiming to victoriously deal with guilt my take on the Nazarene’s brutal demise would only increase guilt in the hidden depths of my being, driving me to ever increasing levels of religious ego devotion and zeal.

Today I no longer follow such a path, the one that leads to a debt paid Calvary. Instead I see the Nazarene teaching the masses on the flower filled hills of the Galilee. ‘You’ve heard it said, but I say unto you….’ brings me hope and new life. I guess the Nazarene is still speaking these words to his followers but who is listening, in our modern sermon saturated marketplace of seminars and DVDs. In short, I still identify with this Jewish son of Yosef, son of God, mainly because of his authentic spirituality, one that pierces through the ego defenses of my religious and social self.

Certainly the death of the Nazarene is radically important in its declaration of what God is not. Not a violent Supreme Being, one obsessed by blood and back payments, but One who has experienced mankind’s scapegoat experience as the wounded Lamb of Innocence. The bloody Roman execution of Yeshua shocks us out of our cultural God view and into a new, upside-down awareness that our morality systems are really killers in disguise.

For many of my friends within Mind, Body, Spirit circles may I respectively and humbly suggest that Yeshua is something more than an ascended avatar of the Divine. A manifestation of Divine Love and Wisdom for sure, but one who uniquely revealed the hidden nature of our righteous violence and its religio-politico networks. One roused from the grave in a way that no other spiritual Master appears to have been; a resurrection authentication by Divine Love of his character and message, one that would explode the lie of morality for all time.

So, in following the Nazarene may I suggest that we don’t follow a belief system, but a Living Presence, one that longs to walk with us along the psycho-spiritual lanes of life’s highway. Boxless and free Yeshua bar Yosef can well and truly look after himself without our help. He needs neither security cover nor fervent crusades to spread his touch of psycho-spiritual liberation and wholeness. All that’s required is an honest an open heart and even that’s given. Such hearts are often found in the most unusual of places.

http://www.amazon.com/author/dylanmorrison

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Speaking In Tongues

Speaking In Tongues

Nothing divides the religious world as much as the slightly spooky practice of speaking in tongues. Most Jesus followers of the Reformed tradition believe it to be totally obsolete for those on the spiritual path. If you’ve got the Bible that’s all one needs, apart that is from a trained pastor-teacher to feed you its gems! Meanwhile, Pentecostal and Charismatic Christians are only too willing to burst into tongues at the drop of an ecstatic hat, before trying to sell you their beatific experience! No wonder the non-Christian world shies away from such opposing camps, dismissively declaring ‘Thanks, but no thanks!’

Now, many books have been written for and against the modern psycho-spiritual phenomenon known as tongues speaking, or to give it its more respectable Greek name glossolalia. In this little article I’ve no intention of arguing my way through the theological minefield of trying to prove either the validity or spurious nature of this religious utterance, for like a well-loved security blanket, the proponents of either side of the argument are highly unlikely to change their minds. Instead, I wish to briefly examine the psycho-spiritual practice from a slightly different perspective.

First, let me come clean! I am still a tongues speaker even after all my painful experiences within the somewhat whacky world of Charismatic Christianity. My disillusionment with the vision and often dysfunctional, hierarchical practices of faith groups within that particular religious stream have surprisingly not shifted this most unusual of verbal curiosities. Many of my fellow ex-Charismatics dumped their tongue many moons ago, as they ran back into the security of conservative Christianity or into the freeing wilderness of non-belief.

Let’s face it – speaking in tongues doesn’t have a particularly good press. Wide-eyed fanatics dancing wildly in little wooden churches while belting out their glossolalic gushings to all and sundry, do tend to make the casual onlooker more than a little nervous. Send for the ‘Ghostbusters’ or the men in white coats is one’s instinctive reaction! Yet, the experience of being in a crowd of well-behaved tongues singers is a most uplifting spiritual high; one similar to tuning into the most sublime Gregorian chants. There is definitely something to this strange but comforting occurence, but what?

Let me come at this question from the angle of mimetic desire and the freedom of the Queendom/Kingdom of God. In our day-to-day consciousness, ego or fragmented psyche is never far away. When pressure situations unexpectedly confront us our little ego warrior is always there ready to protect us, albeit by demonizing the other, the one blamed for our fast-approaching catastrophe. The pre-wired fight or flight tendency within the neural programming of our magnificent central nervous system, is all too willing to work hand in hand with our edgy ego advocate. Sadly, it looks like we’re stuck with such an automatic reflex response to perceived, if often illusory, dangers. Or are we?

Saul of Taurus, aka St. Paul, who claimed to be the most prolific of tongues speakers within the early Yeshua movement, has a somewhat interesting take on things. He claims that glossolalia is a verbal expression of the human spirit; a psycho-spiritual link joining our inner Divine Spark to the transcendent Divine Fire without. In previous articles I’ve suggested that experiential salvation has less to do with escaping a fearful fiery hell and more to do with our release from our internal psychic prison, viz. our skewed desire center and its ego ally.

So may I respectfully suggest that tongues speaking is a psychic switch of sorts, a tool to unhook us, albeit temporarily, from the dominance of our conscious mind and its default desire settings. In other words, the voluntary act of speaking in an unlearned language is a form of desire detachment, a realignment with our spirit I AM, and subsequently, an experiential connection with the energising flow of Divine Presence. The tongue in question is somehow tuning our inner receiver into the Divine channel, while defusing our psychological tendency for desire conflict.

Without having to enter into an uncontrollable, frenzied state of nihilistic abandonment, the tongues speaker has consciously moved into an altered state of consciousness, one where they retain full control but have a therapeutic, detached space in which to breathe – a mini ‘holy of holies’ if you like, one free from the constant chatter of their restless, love-starved sub-personalities.

So where does that leave us? Well, for me, the gift of tongues is an authentic psycho-spiritual ability for the purpose of disengagement and connection. To disengage from the swirling desire Matrix in which we all swim – to connect to our core Self and its Mother Ship, Divine Love. Though best done in private I reckon, far from the showbiz settings of white-suited TV evangelists and their somewhat hypnotised followers.

Dylan’s Author Page ~ https://goo.gl/7BJ8JR

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Paul ~ the chosen One or one among many?

Paul ~ the chosen One or one among many?

Some days I wonder what today’s Yeshua movement would be like if Saul, the persecutor Rabbi hadn’t fallen off his Damascus Road donkey. Suppose the Jewish scholar-policeman had just ‘pulled himself together’ and spurred his trusty ass on towards another religious roundup; how would the Way, later to morph into Christianity, appear in 2013? Call me strange but this somewhat unsettling quirky, what if thinking seems to be part of my Irish psycho-spiritual makeup, so please bear with me!

Many today believe the true Gospel or Good News to be the pure revelation of God as expounded in the writings of Saul. Their reasoning goes something like this:

Yeshua came to teach the Kingdom of God, it was largely rejected by his listeners, and so God and he switched to plan B, that had really been plan A all along viz. his death and resurrection. So far so good to a point. In the early days of the embryonic, Jerusalem, Yeshua community it would appear that his followers, including his ex-disciples didn’t get it quite right! Except for Stephen that is  for he, like Yeshua before him, drew the mob violence of the religious establishment upon himself, becoming the first so-called Christian martyr, for only Truth tends to draw the raging genie out of a highly polished sacred lamp.

Yet, the reasoning goes that God still hadn’t got His perfect message out! Even though the Jerusalem gang had lived with Yeshua during his space-time mission and had  been taught by him post resurrection over many days, a finer intellect was needed, one who would really get it.

And so we arrive at Saul, aka Paul and his stumbling attempts to understand the One who’d knocked him off  his perch as Temple sponsored Inquisitor in Chief. The big transformation in Paul however took place somewhere else, one where most of his old religious paradigm seems to have rapidly gone down the metaphysical drain. This Pauline womb of creativity appears to have been the Arabian, or more accurately, the Jordanian desert, where the new convert claimed to have been caught up into the Jewish Third Heaven and granted unspeakable glimpses of Ultimate Reality. This is where Paul professed to have gained his insights into the whole Yeshua phenomenon, later described by him as my Gospel or Good News‘.

Later writing to his fellow Yeshua followers in Galatia, the new apostle claimed not to have received his teachings from Peter and his Jerusalem friends  but directly from the risen Yeshua. Clearly then, the converted Rabbi was what is commonly called a mystic, one who receives direct revelation from Divine Source, rather than the status quo teaching of his contemporaries.

So what, if any, is the big problem?

Wasn’t Paul clearly sent along to lift the message of Yeshua and his former disciples to a whole new level, one that the Gentile would could accept without all those painful Jewish disciplines such as circumcision? Let’s face it; which of us men wouldn’t have signed up to be a Paulian?

Well, looking back at things from our 21st century perspective it’s hard to see the problems, but problems there certainly were once Paul added his mystical mix to the existing Yeshua mythology. Many of us have observed hints of the religious rivalry within the early Yeshua movement as described in the book of Acts, a Pauline stream account of the tensions between his followers and the fledgling movement’s elder statesmen back in Jerusalem with their particularly Jewish take on their risen leader. Let’s be honest: there must be a wee bit of Pauline propaganda in Luke’s Acts narrative; no-one writes to paint their charismatic leader as a ‘heretic’ but rather the bearer of a superior revelation, one that surpasses the previously accepted take on spiritual reality. Paul, In reality Paul was only one among many interpreters of the whole Yeshua event, those who jostled for the label of God sanctioned teacher. The early Yeshua movement was I’m afraid, not one big happy family but a collage of metaphysical takes on the revolutionary Nazarene, one with it’s all too obvious tensions and rivalries.

Three centuries on the Pauline interpretation of Yeshua’s execution and resurrection were later confirmed by the Constantine instigated Counsel of Nicaea as Christian with letters accredited to his authorship later included in the accepted Canon of Holy Writings, known as the New Testament.

So what’s the big deal you say?

Well, may I humbly suggest that Paul’s writings have gained a super status position within Reformed Theology and its modern love children viz. evangelicalism and its Pentecostal and Charismatic offshoots; one that is, all things considered, spiritually unhealthy. Having been raised to the level of Sacred Scripture, Paul’s metaphysical musings infer that the Gospel narrative accounts of Yeshua’s life and teaching don’t quite reveal the Mysteries of the Cosmos. The Tao/Logos in human form did not fully reveal all that needed to be revealed. Neither in fact do the other relatively recently discovered accounts of the early Yeshua movement, in the form of the so-called ‘Gnostic Gospels’.

Am I suggesting that we shouldn’t read Paul’s or his disciples’ take on Yeshua. No not at all. There is clearly something rich and unique within his narratives that reflect the awe and wonder of the mystical Yeshua, the Cosmic Christ to borrow a New Age term. Rather, what I am suggesting is that we have ignored the Gospel narratives, both canonical and excluded, at our peril. Our spirituality has been based on Pauline interpretation, giving us a one-sided limp on our pilgrimage home. Personally I believe that all that we require to come into mimetic salvation with the Divine Source is contained hidden within the overly familiarized Yeshua accounts within the accepted Gospels.

May I humbly suggest that God didn’t grab Rabbi Saul to be ‘the’ authentic interpreter or indeed founder of ‘Christianity’, as many modern Yeshua followers subliminally believe, but to paint a uniquely colored stroke on the multifarious canvas of Divine Truth.

So let’s dip into the rich variety of religious writings that abound around the person of Yeshua rather than remain Paul freaks. To do so will make us more sensitive to our own inner Journey and that of those around us. Life, especially the spiritual life, is full of surprises.

Dylan’s Author page ~ https://www.amazon.com/author/dylanmorrison

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The Mysticism of John

The Mysticism of John

‘In beginning was the Tao/Logos

And the Tao/Logos was toward God ……..

All was coming into being through it

And apart from it nothing has yet come into being …..

In it was life

And the life was the light of humanity.

And the light is appearing in the darkness

And the darkness grasped it not.’

John ~ the Beloved

In today’s post I wish to revisit some well-known words accredited to the Johannine stream of the early Yeshua movement, hopefully opening them up to a broader and more exciting take on the Mystery that is the Godhead.

In beginning was the Tao/Logos

And the Tao/Logos was toward God ……..

Outside space-time there is no beginning as such. Was the writer referring here to the timeless Eternal Now where Divine Love dwells or just is? Or is he alluding to the beginning of space-time itself? Either way, he seems to suggest that the Creative Intelligence or Organising Principle of Chinese and Greek philosophical thought is the great Constant in what we perceive to be existence. The Tao/Logos always was and in some strange relational way constantly gazes into the face of Divine Love itself. This mysterious connection and directional flow of life appears to be central to all that the writer goes on to expound.

All was coming into being through it

And apart from it nothing has yet come into being …..

All that exists outside this Eternal Essence is birthed and continues to have its being in and through its Divine Self. Nothing lies outside its Organisational Mind and Creative Energy. Everything that truly is hangs on the transcendent coat stand of its Being.

In it was life

And the life was the light of humanity.

Life, whatever life truly is, finds its origins in the Tao/Logos. It is the womb from which this consciousness that we call life has emerged. In some mysterious way there exists a deep union between life and light. In our space-time world light is a must for the propagation of life. In Ultimate Reality, the Divine Life reveals its Presence as Light, a Light that is meant for the spiritual eyes of mankind; a Divine radiance that targets the heart of humanity.

And the light is appearing in the darkness

And the darkness grasped it not.

Where does darkness dwell but in the fragmented psyche of our inner self? Does darkness have any independent existence apart from our wounded souls. Is it real as the Tao/Logos is real. Or is it a virtual reality dream world created by the trauma of withdrawn love. Whatever its essence it is impossible for such darkness to keep Divine Light at bay. Once it has decided to shine the Light of the Tao/Logos can enter the world of our psychic darkness at will. Yet if we cling to the inner darkness that promises to protect us from further rejection and psychic wounding we can remain blind to the revelation of Ultimate Reality via the ever-present Light. Preferring to remain in the apparent safety of our programmed darkness we miss the liberating life and wholeness of the visiting Light.

There’s one thing for sure: we cannot escape the Presence of the Tao/Logos even if we bury our heads in the psychic sand of our fragmented self. When we chose to open our eyes to Ultimate Reality, tired of our days of darkness, our whole world will take on a new splendour. Like a previously shuttered window now opened to the stream of sunshine and its generating warmth, our cold, dried out soul will welcome the transforming Life of the Tao/Logos. No longer will life be a struggle to survive in the jungle of our misperceived reality but a joyful Dance in the Eternal Light, a wild abandon to the underpinning Love that holds the whole space-time thing together. A Presence that now carries the illusory load of our fear filled psyche, One in which we can lie back and kick off the shoes of Self Effort and religious duty.

Dylan’s Author page ~ https://www.amazon.com/author/dylanmorrison

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Spiritual Abuse ~ The Great Escape

Spiritual Abuse ~ The Great Escape

In my previous posts I looked at how we enter into spiritual abuse and how we are locked into it, through a desire matrix and its covering narrative. Today I want to look at how we get out from under such abuse and its controlling mindset.

Let’s face it; it’s not easy to pull off The Great Escape; many of us remain in such abuse environments for decades of our precious space-time existence before finally leaving. What I wish to do is look at the dynamics of our departure and help explain our sudden shift into freedom.

In theory our Will or free Will should help us break away from both the spiritual abuser and his abusive group. In this ideal world we just decide to walk away having coolly examined the facts of our emotional imprisonment. Yet in practice this is far from the case. We are puppets pulled by the subliminal desire strings of the abuser and their metaphysical vision. In such a closeted setting our will appears to miss the point completely, having come into subjugation to the feel good factor of belonging to such a committed group of fellow believers.

Let me suggest that our awakening to the reality of our religious involvement can come in only one of two ways.

1) Expulsion

2) Transpersonal Crisis

Expulsion

The psychic hold that operates through desire transference between Model and Disciple is an extremely strong bond, giving us a sense of social belonging and involvement in a higher purpose. It works well for a time, producing the illusion that we are bang in the center of the Divine Will; a garden of metaphysical pleasure where the religious roses seem to be permanently in bloom. However, as we press into our Model and their infectious desire, a strange metamorphosis begins to take place. Birthed by sincerity and mimetic imitation we gradually become clones of  our chosen Model. Unity within the group is initially strengthened by such a process but eventually our Model begins to take fright, alerted to the fact that they are now surrounded by mirror images of their inner Self.

Such reflex fear leads to a psychic distancing from the Disciples in question. No longer seen as aids to their hidden narcissism, the follower clones are now perceived as rivals for the position of spiritual top dog. In often hasty but subtle defensive measures the Disciple who felt so wanted by their Model now begin to sense an undercurrent of emotional rejection. Believing themselves to have done something to displease the Model the sensitive disciple redoubles their efforts to be like their leader idol. Such a response leads to a further withdrawal of affection or acceptance by the Model who on the surface keeps up the charade of loving all within their care. And so, the spiraling scene is set, that will eventually lead to the expulsion of either Disciple or Model from the group or family in question.

Usually, it is the devoted Disciple who leaves the group, finally realizing that they are no longer wanted. Immediate disillusionment sets in as they gain a glimpse of  what has been going on in the subliminal realm of desire control and conscious group myth. Often anger bursts forth, maintaining the rivalry from afar or from the vantage point of a new group built around a new Model. Such an opportunity for awakening from the religious dream is often delayed as the Disciple replaces one Desire Model for another. Unfortunately history will repeat itself until the Disciple comes to a realization that the religious desire game is the same the world over, morphing itself to the cultural shape of each new group joined.

Yet this psychic expulsion from one’s historical group provides a great opportunity to sit back and examine the process that one has been involved in. Religious ego will want to wage a scapegoating guerrilla war against one’s ex-Model and their flock, but it is a waste of the little psychic energy remaining in one’s emotional tank. A cold turkey phase of withdrawal has kicked in, one which will need much compassion and non judgement for recovery to take place. The battlefield of religious dogma and ideology is not the place we want to find ourselves. Rather we need to step away from all things religious and let reality kick in no matter how painful it is.

Only in facing up to our own woundedness and analyzing our group desire journey can we begin to make sense of it all, a prerequisite to permanent healing and wholeness. So simply put, best not to jump back into a religious pot of metaphysical desire having been thrown out of a spiritually abusive frying pan! Rather be compassionate to your Self and let the dust of God desire settle; avoid religious desire transmitters for a while and enjoy being outside the psycho-spiritual desire field of flock membership. Remember, faith groups do not hold a franchise on the Divine Presence; Spirit Source is all too willing to begin the healing process in the so-called desert of non church attendance!

In my next post I will look at how a Transpersonal Crisis can surprisingly lead to our Great Escape from the abusive world of model driven religion.

Dylan’s Author page ~ https://www.amazon.com/author/dylanmorrison

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In the last post we saw how the reintegration of the subpersonalities within our fractured psyche is the path to psychological and spiritual healing. Yeshua ate with the diverse outcasts of His day: similarly we are to learn to embrace these broken parts of our psyches and welcome them Home.

How are we to practically do this?

Once a subpersonality is identified by observation, we can start a dialogue with it. Ideally this is done in the presence of an authentic unifying centre.

What or who is such a centre?

When the initial fragmentation of the developing psyche took place it was in response to the withdrawal of unconditional Love by a parent or significant ‘other’. If this Love had not been withdrawn then the parental figure would have fulfilled the role of  an authentic unifying centre; a role that is vital for the health development of the young psyche. Unconditional Love maintains the unity of the psyche despite the pressures that it faces.

In the healing of the adult, but subpersonality – ridden, psyche such an authentic unifying centre proves vital, replaying the initial role of the adult’s parent.

Who can operate as a unifying centre?

In theory anyone who operates out of unconditional Love. Practically speaking though an experienced therapist or counsellor may be the first one to participate in the role of a ‘healing parent’.

The safety of unconditional Love enables the previously hidden and fearful subpersonality to emerge from the Shadows of our unconscious. Such love enables the little one to express its energy and pain, the core of its character and its reason detre.

How can this subpersonality manifest?

I believe such a subpersonality screams out for recognition. Prior to the Presence of unconditional Love its manifestation was that of a wounded animal, always wary of danger and further rejection, ready to attack in defense before scurrying off back into the Shadows of our pain.

In the Presence  of unconditional Love, the subpersonality comes out of hiding and expresses its nature through emotion, bodily sensations and often visualisation. Under the guidance of a trained therapist the history of the survival personality can be brought into the Light without any fear of rejection. Like the gushing of a new oil well, the healing of such a survival personality can be dramatic and almost instantaneous.

Once the pressure cooker of buried emotion is released the subpersonality is ready to take its place around the psyche’s table with all its healed compatriots.

Who is to host such a meal for the soul?

The answer to that comes in the next post.

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In my last post in this series we looked at the initial step in dealing with our survival sub-personalities viz observation.

Once we can identify a number of these ‘mini-me’s we are on the road to receiving healing.

As we saw previously many of these little defensive personalities within have been created through trauma, often mimicking the behaviour of our parents that we believe will cause them to love us. This bondage to the self of ‘the other’ is, I believe, the root of much of our psychological pain.

Where then does spirituality come into this healing process?

One unusual characteristic of Yeshua was Hs willingness to eat with the social outcasts of His day, with those commonly referred to as ‘sinners’ by the establishment’s religious power-brokers. Annoyed by the Nazarene’s transgression of their fellowship code Yeshua’s critics continually tried to drag Him back into line regarding their status-quo morality and so-called  orthodoxy.

A key to Yeshua’s world view and the Kingdom that he proclaimed was social and spiritual integration.

I believe that such welcoming integration is the principle of all healing, spiritual, psychological and physical.

So what are we to do with the sub-personalities that we’ve recently identified as part of our psyche?

Firstly we are to recognise and welcome them as part of  ourselves. Imagine a scene in ancient Palestine where Yeshua is lying on a couch, eating with prostitutes, extortionists and the general ‘lowlife’ of His day. Yeshua saw something deeply appealing and valuable, yet often wounded in His fellow guests. The road to their healing lay not in religious demands but in eating in the Presence of unconditional Love.

The same holds true for our fragmented psyche with its  strong survival sub-personalities. Each of  them has a light and dark side that contributes to our survival under stressful replays of their original birth trauma.

When I slip into my ‘father’s’ withdrawn sub-personality I exercise a form of detachment to avoid the rejection I perceive coming my way. Such a detachment has its plus side. Violent verbal or physical exchanges will probably be avoided. On the negative side the detachment leads to a lack of engagement with the issues involved and constructive dialogue.

Once the pluses and negatives of our sub-personalities, unearthed from the dark layers of our subconscious are identified we can welcome them into the ‘family’ circle that communes without condemnation or self judgement. Another step to healing has been taken.

What are we to do with the often demanding energies of the now identified subpersonalities?

More of that in the next post.

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