The Start Of A New LifeAug 31, 2022
This week I found inspiration to begin my next book project. The working title is Spiritual Liberation: The Path from Internal Conflict to Internal and External Prosperity.
I plan to pour my soul's work into this project. I'm so excited about it that I'd like to share the prologue in this week's blog article.
I was walking into my main level office to try to meditate. My coach, who I had hired a month before continued to check in with me to see if I had fulfilled the assignment he had given me during one of our first coaching calls. He gave me very simple instructions; sit on the floor, close my eyes, breathe in through my nose and out through my mouth, and count my breaths. Count from 1 to10, starting back over when I reached 10, and do this for 15 minutes, watching my mind during the process. I had put off meditating because I thought it was too woo-woo. Besides that, what if my family saw me meditating? What would they think of me?
It was April of 2016 and I had just been fired from my 2nd executive level position in about 20 months. I had a long, successful run in corporate America, and had ascended the ladder quickly and easily. During the process I developed a toxic relationship with alcohol, I ballooned to 300 pounds, my wife Angie fell deeper into pharmaceutical drug addiction, our home was toxic and abusive, and there was no happiness to be found. My exit from corporate was untimely, but probably saved my life. When I hired my first mentor I did so against Angie’s wishes, but I knew I needed help. I was seconds from committing suicide, and after I pulled the barrel of a gun out of my mouth, I knew I couldn’t do it alone anymore. I needed to relearn how to live because everything I thought I knew about life helped me put a gun in my mouth.
I slowly closed the office door in my home in St. Charles, Missouri. I sat down on the floor and crossed my legs. I closed my eyes and began breathing in through my nose and out through my mouth. As I began to count, somewhere around 5 I lost track of the count. I restarted. I started over and lost track of the count again. Then again. Then again. I began to get frustrated. I noticed that as soon as I started counting my mind would question how much time was left, or whether my kids were watching, or if I was doing it right, or if my mentor knew what he was doing. I noticed that thoughts distracted me from counting, but also from relaxing. Thoughts. I watched my thoughts. I had never watched my thoughts before. I wondered where these thoughts came from and why I never noticed them before.
I started over. Again. And again. It was one of the most frustrating experiences I had ever experienced.
Then I quit out of frustration. It was too uncomfortable.
After the next call with my mentor, and some nagging about the benefits of remaining consistent in my meditation practice, I sat down to meditate again. I started counting…
1, 2, 3, 4…
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7…
1, 2, 3…
Then I felt something. I felt sadness. Deep in the pit of my stomach I felt sadness. I focused my attention on the pit of my stomach, and I felt the sadness deepen. I began to cry. Suddenly I wasn’t worrying about counting and numbers, but I felt sadness and I didn’t do anything to stop it. In fact, as I paid more attention to it, it grew even sadder and more painful. I felt my entire upper body begin to bend forward, and my upper body began to rock back and forth almost like it was convulsing. I felt like I was not in my body, but watching my body convulse. I did nothing to stop it, in fact I didn’t want it to stop. I didn’t know what was happening, but it strangely felt right. I was crying and convulsing, and it felt beneficial in some way.
I’m not exactly sure how long I convulsed and cried, but I can only estimate that it was about 30 minutes. It felt like forever. All the muscles in my abdomen and upper body kept contracting and expanding rapidly, and my torso continued to rock back and forth unintentionally. I wasn’t in control. I was watching all of this happen, and I was doing nothing about it.
After a while the convulsions slowed, and my torso came back to an upright position. Just like I did nothing to start the movement, I did nothing to stop it; it was on autopilot. Soon I was upright and still, with tears streaming down my face, my shirt soaked with tears, and a body that was exhausted, but somehow energized at the same time. I didn’t know what it was, but I felt lighter, and like whatever happened needed to happen. I resumed breathing, and I noticed I didn’t lose count this time. I probably took another 30 minutes before I stopped, and slowly stood up to get up out of my seated position. The entire experience was surreal and caught me off-guard.
I told my mentor what happened, and he was as shocked as I was. Neither of us knew what happened. All I knew was that my life would never be the same. It hasn’t been the same since. Years after this first episode I discovered that I had experienced a Kundalini Awakening. Decades of pain and suffering let go that day. They were trapped in my body, and when I opened, they began to let go. The awakening was aggressive and rather violent. But the pain and suffering that let go of me that day were enough to keep me committed to a healthy, daily spiritual practice. Since then, I’ve experienced more violent, intoxicating episodes, but none quite as aggressive. I’ve also experienced smaller more gentle episodes. With each one I feel more liberated and freer. I’ve learned that there are easier ways of letting go of the pain and suffering of the past to experience more peace, love, and joy, and it’s the most powerful work a human can do.
It all started that day. I didn’t know what was happening, but that single day helped me create a path to real spiritual liberation.
Photo by Mohamed Nohassi on Unsplash
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