This is an excerpt of the book “Living Beyond the Five Senses: The Emergence of a Spiritual Being” by Teresa L. DeCicco
Every single human being will come to face painful and difficult challenges in life. This is a universal reality of being human. It is the nature of life itself that brings forth situations that cause pain, hardship, and crises which can occur at any age or stage in life. When difficult life challenges occur this is usually met with shock or intense emotional pain and the natural response is to resist both the wave of emotions that are elicited and the situation itself. Like a fast moving train, the trials of life seem to come from nowhere or have been building for many years and finally come to a head.
The nature of these crises is vast and can include any life situation that adversely impacts one’s personal life in a major way. These include various health issues, death and dying of loved ones, losing a job, witnessing a crime or catastrophic event, relationship issues such as separation or divorce, family turmoil, or financial crises at the personal, corporate, or global levels. People can be hit with one or more crisis at a time but the result is a shocking halt to one’s normal life pattern. These events wake us up to the call that the life we have been living is not what we thought it was. It is also a call to look closely at how we are living and to question why we are living as we are. When someone is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness this can be the moment to wake up to one’s own life and ask what needs to be done. Do relationships need to be mended? Do new modalities of healing need to be explored rather than simply accepting a one-venue form of healing? Does the illness carry a message and if so, what could it be?
When a job is lost, perhaps this is the time to ask what the greater purpose of life is in terms of working and service to the planet. Rather than letting fear set it, perhaps looking at the situation as a point of freedom and an opportunity to make a more meaningful contribution through one’s work can be explored. A new approach to the situation may bring a new and much needed change.
The reality is that we change and grow from the pain when we allow it into our lives and allow it to do its work. The tendency is to numb out with drugs, alcohol, relationships, work, or any other distraction that will keep the situation at bay. It is these very difficult things that actually allow us to stretch and grow when we have the courage to face them and be changed by them. By facing the fact that a loved one is dying we are able to expand our own capacity to love during that time. By facing the fact that a spouse is unfaithful we can then break our own patterns and move into a new relationship that allows greater growth and a life that could not be lived in the old way. By facing the reality and pain that a child has a mental disorder means that forms of treatment can be sought and a higher level of compassion can be learned. Facing the crises, in whatever form they may come, is the beginning of a life changing process for the better.
Accepting our crises as they appear and facing them with courage and openness creates the process that we can call the first step. To continue thinking in the old way in a new situation creates blocks to a new way so by allowing new thoughts and feelings to come forth, we are initiating a new path. Often the tendency is to keep doing what we do because that is what we know which of course will only bring us the same results. When a partner continues to be unfaithful and we forgive and move on without any real emotional or psychological work then we continue to live in deceit and dishonesty. When we stay in a job of great dissatisfaction for the money alone then a deep sense of emotional emptiness will always be the result. Using drugs and alcohol to numb out a life we do not want keeps us living the life we do not want. It cannot be any other way until we choose to change our thoughts and feelings about a life situation in a profound way.
The crisis then is the starting gate to a new life. If it is received with courage, openness and wonder then personal change can begin. With this, crises and pain eventually come to be seen as a great privilege. These are the gifts that initiate change because without crises, we rarely move to a new way of being. When new thoughts and feelings begin to stir then behaviours change in relation to the thoughts and feelings. Crises, though painful, can now be accepted as the wake up call to change ourselves self from the inside. It is from here that the world begins to change but not because it is different but because we are able to see, know, and feel it differently. We begin to see a world that is embedded in the world we see with our eyes but were unable to see it with our eyes alone. We begin to know the world in a rich and complicated way but we were unable to know this with our five senses alone and finally, we begin to feel a world that we are embedded into where we are connected to all people, all life, and all of creation. As we move along the continuum of spiritual transformation our sense of being becomes richer and our lives become far more meaningful than ever before. It all begins with the conscious choice to do something different when facing the pain of crises.
Teresa L. DeCicco, PhD was a University Professor, researcher, and author studying Dreams and Dreaming and Psychology of the Spiritual Self when a wave of spiritual transformative experiences occurred. From then on, over a 17 year period, her experience with near death, clairsentience, precognitive dreaming, and other transformations led her to understand the spiritual transformation that was occurring, not only in her, but in millions of others at this time in history. Her most recent book is entitled Living Beyond the Five Senses: The Emergence of a Spiritual Being. Visit her website here.