Thomas Moore's "The Dark Nights of the Soul" Extract

Go down

Thomas Moore's "The Dark Nights of the Soul" Extract

Post by Godiva83 on April 1st 2008, 8:37 pm

A fantastic book about spirituality with a refreshing point of view on what Psychology labels as depression... Read on study

---

...When it comes to spiritual growth, we humans are solar-seeking beings; eager for the bright lights of clarity and the bliss of illumination. Paradoxically, we all need to walk through the shadow of the dark night in order to discover a life worth living, according to psychotherapist and spiritual commentator Thomas Moore.

Unlike depression, which is more of an emotional state, Moore calls the dark night a slow transformation process, which is fueled by a profound period of doubt, disorientation and questioning. Ultimately, a journey into the dark night will reshape the very meaning of your life. As a self-proclaimed "lunar type," Moore is comfortable leading his clients and readers into the shadows, where ambiguities and mysteries lurk around every corner. He describes the dark night journey in stages, starting with feeling distant from your life even as you continue to go through the motions. The second phase is "liminality," meaning living on the threshold between the known self and the unknown self. This is perhaps the most uncomfortable phase as the dark night may "take you away from the cultivation and persona you have developed in your education and from family learning," he explains. After dwelling in this murky darkness, there's a stage of "re-incorporation," in which one integrates the profound inner transitions into daily life.

Like a tour guide to the underworld, Moore leads readers through all these phases, offering tools and rituals for making the journey more tolerable or at least more meaningful. He also speaks to the many arenas and stages of life in which we might find ourselves stumbling through the dark, with chapters on marriage, parenting, sexuality, creativity and health.

Source: Amazon.com
The Night Sea Journey

" One ancient story that sheds light on the dark night is the tale of the hero swallowed by a huge fish. The hero, or better, antihero -he is the victim of circumstances- simply sits in the bowels of the fish as it carries him through the water. Because the story is associated with the sun setting in the west and traveling underwater to the east to rise in the morning, this theme is sometimes called the "Night Sea Journey". It is a cosmic passage taken as a metaphor for our own dark nights, when we are trapped in a mood or by external circumstances and can do little but sit and wait for liberation.

Imagine that your dark mood, or the external source of your suffering is a large, living container in which you are held captive. But this container is moving, getting somewhere, taking you to where you need to go. You may not like the situation you're in, but it would help if you imagined it constructively. Maybe at this very minute you are on a night sea journey of your own.

Sometimes in your darkness you may sense that something is incubating in you or that you are being prepared for life. You are going somewhere, even though there are no external signs of progress. I have sat in therapy with many men and women who had no idea what was happening to them, as they felt pulled away from the joys of normal life. All they felt was bland, inarticulate confusion. Still, most were willing to sit with me, week after week, as, slowly, meaning began to emerge. Some from the beginning had the slightest hint that something creative was at work.

The whale's belly is, of course, a kind of womb. In your withdrawal from life and your uncertainty you are like an infant not yet born. The darkness is natural, one of the life processes. There may be some promise, the mere suggestion that life is going forward, even though you have no sense of where you are headed. It's a time for waiting and trusting. My attitude as a therapist in these situation is not to be anxious for a conclusion or even understanding. You have to sit with these things and in due time let them be revealed for what they are. "
avatar
Godiva83
Admin
Admin

Female Number of posts : 66
Location : México
Occupation : Enfant Terrible
Registration date : 2008-03-24

View user profile http://theliberboards.heavenforum.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Thomas Moore's "The Dark Nights of the Soul" Extract

Post by Sam on April 2nd 2008, 7:41 am

Finally someone that understands the cycle of life. We are labeled as either negative or postive type persons. I hate this ... it is a control issue sponsored by the "mind terrorist" who can force others to play their game just by labeling them. Big companies thrive on this crap forcing workers to accept any dehumanizing abuse they want to force on them. It stifles creativity!

The term negative and positive refer to electricity. Without a negative there would be no positive and no current would flow ... thus is the same with the cycle of our emotions. A so called "positive" thinker is not a thinker at all. Is the world all good with no bad? Of course not and to see nothing but good in everything is not reality and not healthy mentally. The same applies to the so called "negative" thinker ... one must have both emotions and thought processes to make good decisions and stay sane.

Thomas Moore presents this same "truth" using another opposing force in the cycle of life ... darkness and light. The idea that darkness is bad and light is good is the basis for most religion. If one doesn't have times of darkness, then how can they understand light? I think both light and darkness are good and necessary to complete the cycle of life.

You see ... without opposing forces their would be NO LIFE!

Think about it ... yes use your mind it is ok to do your own thinking ... others have controlled you long enough!

It is human nature to think that all opposing forces are divided into good and bad.

I call BS.

Sam
Liberman Basic
Liberman Basic

Number of posts : 13
Registration date : 2008-03-28

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Thomas Moore's "The Dark Nights of the Soul" Extract

Post by isidore on April 12th 2008, 12:35 am

I haven't read much in the way of psychiatry or psychology save parts of the DSM-IV (to try and understand where someone was coming from better; didn't work).

This Job archetype Moore postulates is interesting though. A journey inward. I've felt trapped often, but never thought perhaps I'm trapped but not motionless, but instead progressing. I came across the term "katabasis" recently (reading Xenophon- I'm a Classics nut). Anyway, it's a Greek term that translates roughly to "a march down to the coast" or "a retreat." I looked it up and I guess it's also a term for a specific type of depression found mostly in young men.

Maybe they're not depressed though. perhaps they're only experiencing liminality. Hmm...
avatar
isidore
Liberman Basic
Liberman Basic

Male Number of posts : 29
Location : spes
Registration date : 2008-04-12

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Thomas Moore's "The Dark Nights of the Soul" Extract

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum