And life itself told me this secret: “Behold, I am that which must overcome itself again and again.” (Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus spoke Zarathustra)
Continuing in this series on The Thymus Gland and the Spirit of Purification, and the theme of the previous post, citing Dr. Joan Borysenko’s professional perspective on Plato’s metaphorical description of the process of transformation as an emergence from out of the “cave” of isolation into the light of day — along with my own perspectives shared in my book SACRED ANATOMY:
Crossing the Threshold (cont’d)
The traditional way [of treating an ill condition] generally prevails as the person proceeds to undertake a life-long regimen of medication to keep the symptoms suppressed and death at bay, and it is sometimes like pulling teeth to get a person to let go of the grip he/she has on the doctor’s “diagnosis.” This only tends to assure the permanency of the condition by sending the message to the brain that in order to be able to continue treating the diabetes, for instance, the “disease” must be maintained in the body. As long as the symptoms of dis-ease are being suppressed and not heeded for their message, and the appropriate action to address the cause is withheld, then the healing process is disrupted, thus making the symptoms of dis-ease necessary and prolonging the inappropriate therapeutic action of symptom-suppression. Where this suppression is being accomplished, as with most therapies, by the use of harsh and imposing chemicals, it can become dangerously toxic to the rest of the body over time.
[This also applies to alcohol and drug addictions as well as mental illness. One must maintain one’s identity as an “alcoholic,” for example, in order to participate in an AA program.]
I hyphenate the word “dis-ease” in order to remind myself as a physician, and to inform my patients, that we are not treating a “condition,” which the word “disease” implies, but simply listening to the places where the person is experiencing the discomfort or pain for messages from the subconscious signaling where changes need to be made in one’s life style and attitude, as well as what kind of support can be given to enable the healing process already underway. Dis-ease is always an indication that a healing process is underway. This process gets underway at the moment of insult or injury and starts with the subconscious mind asking for the cooperation and assistance of the conscious mind. Pain and discomfort is its way of asking. When the subconscious is satisfied that help is being given and changes are beginning to be made, the symptoms may be turned off, simply because they are no longer necessary. In the case of a fever, the temperature will be turned down when the purpose for the fever — the incineration of toxins — is satisfied. What thwarts the healing process most is failure on the part of the physician, and the person experiencing the dis-ease, to hear what the body is trying to convey, and therefore failing to render the appropriate care and assistance.
Often that message does not get through to the conscious mind until the individual is at death’s door. Even then a radical shift in consciousness, or in the vibratory pattern maintaining the ill condition, can bring about miraculous shifts in the healing process and the person suddenly begins to manifest that altered state in the physical body itself. Remissions of illness occur. Life prevails. Sometimes the answer is not available until it becomes evident that one’s life is at stake and death seems imminent. Such intensities of energy create pressure inside the subconscious which engenders the feeling that one has been backed into a corner where it appears there is no way out but death, when suddenly one looks up in prayer to a higher Source of power and the answer comes popping up from out of the subconscious, as though caught up in the sudden upward flow of prayerful energy and sucked into the conscious mind. Like the proverbial bar of soap that, when squeezed in a fist, will go in the direction it is pointed, we sink or swim in the ocean of life depending on what direction our deepest and most heartfelt response is given.
Dr. Borysenko sites Victor Frankel’s moving story from his book, Man’s Search For Meaning, in which he relates how he survived four Nazi death camps simply by looking up to a higher power in times of crisis, therein turning his obviously limiting circumstances and horrible suffering into opportunities for discovering the genius of life’s indomitable transforming spirit.
…In those most terrible of times some people succumbed to the inevitable epidemics that swept the camp, dying before the brutality of the Nazis and the fire of the ovens could consume them. But those who were able to find some meaning in their suffering were more likely to hold onto life…. Frankel and others like him created ritual out of horror, growth out of destruction by choosing to believe that there was some transcendent meaning to their suffering.
She then brings it all home for me when she focuses in on the core purpose for all of life’s experiences and challenges, which can lead us to further spiritual discovery and growth:
When we set our sights on a higher meaning, we automatically cast ourselves in the role of the dweller at the threshold, an initiate in a great story. We’re not powerless, trapped or worthless. We are passing through the fire on the way to a purification of sufficient value that our suffering becomes worthwhile when weighed against it. Part of the value of suffering and dwelling at the threshold is that it initiates or intensifies the search for what is most sacred. For only in placing our minds on the promise of that sacredness can we emerge from the liminal period not only intact but transformed, healed.
The late American psychologist, Abraham Maslow, spoke of the deep need to find not only personal meaning in our lives but trans-personal, or spiritual. A need is like a biological drive, an instinct. It’s part of the genes, part of the race memories that form the collective unconscious that all people share. When a biological drive is thwarted the organism suffers in some way. The particular kind of suffering that accompanies a thwarted drive for trans-personal meaning is a feeling of emptiness, of meaninglessness about life that can progress to depression if the need isn’t attended to.
I love where Joan leads in the direction of discovering what is most sacred inside ourselves as the purification process burns away the outer shell of our substitute self only to reveal the authentic Self. The analogy comes to mind of a kettle of molten gold bubbling inside a furnace with the dross floating to the top to be scrapped off and discarded. What remains is the purified precious metal. I am, and we each one are, as “gold tried in fire” and found worthy of being called precious and lovable as we emerge through the fire of the Spirit of Purification, which stands guarding the way to the Tree of Life in the fourth plane of being.
I see the drive inside of us toward spiritual meaning, toward the experience of union with God, as being much more than genetic and biological. I see it as the irresistible compulsion of spirit, of love itself, to find expression through human hearts in this world, a world which has tried without success to suppress and even destroy its expression down through the ages. This futile attempt to suppress love has been the basic, underlying cause of all human sufferings, including mental depression — especially mental depression, for it is the false ego usurping control of our lives through the capacity of the human mind that has put forth the greatest effort to both prevent love from governing human hearts and to subdue the natural processes of life to serve its own ends. The human mind is far too small a capacity for the false ego to use in its attempts to hold back the forces of the natural world and to thwart the purposes of God for humanity. It may summon the help of the heart, a much larger capacity, by putting up dams of resistance in the form of ill feelings and judgments. But all the dams it puts up cannot hold back the purifying waters of the Spirit of Purification. They finally break asunder, often bringing untold suffering, mental anguish and insanity into the lives of human beings. Even through all of this, the truth of love can be revealed. This is so on both the individual and the collective levels. The Spirit of Purification is very much at work today cleansing the hearts of human beings and the collective heart of humanity of fear, hatred and terror.
The false ego itself, individually and collectively, is deflated in pattern after pattern of failure, until it grows weary and tired of resisting the irresistible spirit of love. It is in the wake of such failures that the truth of the One present, but heretofore missing in action, has the opportunity to come forth and allow the false ego to dissolve and pass away. Both mind and heart are thus transformed by the coming forth of the angel and the radiation of love that is even now shining brightly on earth through a growing number of hearts. Nothing can thwart the compelling and irresistible power of love to transform human beings and to restore the world back into a place of beauty, love and light.
Actually, the world of beauty, love and light exists already in the fourth plane of being. All it takes to know it is for each one to cross over the threshold of purification by fire and enter into it. The kingdom of heaven is then surely known to be within. Upon entering in, one is wise to simply abide there and from this place bring forth beauty, love and light into one’s world, now seen as a creative field to offer love, truth and life into rather than a world of hell and chaos from which one sought ways to escape. For what wanted to escape no longer exists, and the one who has come forth, the angel of light and sound, is eternal and is not going anywhere but always lives in heaven and is delighted when received by his/her own in this world. (From SACRED ANATOMY)
I always enjoy hearing from my readers and followers. So, if you have any thoughts you would like to share, I would love hearing them. I will conclude this series on the thymus gland in my next post. Until then,
Be love. Be loved