February 1, 2022

 I don’t write about all of my experiences during meditation because some of them are so brief that I don’t think they merit recording. Yesterday and today, though, was a little different. I’m still focusing on non-doing during my meditation which means that, after initially centering my concentration in the belly, I ‘let go’ and just sit without concentrating on anything. There is always the risk of getting drawn into thoughts and fantasies with this kind of meditation but generally I am able to remain unconcentrated and uncarried away. If something shows up during my meditation, my practice is to acknowledge it but not do anything, neither moving toward it nor pushing it away.


Yesterday when I was sitting, I became aware of a tormented human soul that at first appeared as a sort of demonic caricature of a sheep or goat. I acknowledged it, inviting it to remain as long as it needed. It soon became clear that the entity was really two: One human soul and that of a ‘demon.’ It makes me wonder if demons are drawn to human souls that are tormented and they form a union of sorts. 


I get there are many ways of looking at psychic trauma and conditions and it’s not currently in vogue to attribute distress to the presence of a demon. And I am reluctant to attribute as much power as religious authorities might attribute to demons. So far, my impression is that demons are non corporeal beings who are drawn to suffering souls, both living and dead. Both the soul and the demon get something out of this union, although I’m not sure exactly what. It seems like the soul gets to believe more firmly in its delusion and perhaps the demon feeds off of the soul’s torment in some way.


In any case, I think we humans have better ways of conceptualizing our psychological problems and issues and are better off not looking at them through the lens of demonic possession. While it may be possible to ‘chase away’ the demon temporarily, the underlying issue that is causing the suffering hasn’t been addressed. It’s better to focus on the cause than the possible presence of a hitchhiker. Also, I don’t think chasing away a demon is the most compassionate course of action. It’s better to invite them to show themselves and see what happens.


It’s curious that the Diamond Approach talks about the ‘The Beast,’ not in its Biblical connotation but as a psychological structure inside us that hates love. It is born from splitting. When we were children and were rejected by our loved ones, we internalized this as a problem with ourselves and were forced to split the ‘bad’ part of ourselves off from the good in order to regain homeostasis with our familial units. This splitting is painful and leads to a division in our sense of self; we are at war with ourselves, the bad part being resentful and filled with hate for being split off from the good. Because it’s such a primitive defense, we tend to project this ‘bad’ part of ourselves, rather than owning it.


I’m wondering if there isn’t more to the Beast than we realize. Do we perhaps attract an actual ‘beast’ to us, something that embodies our hate and lurks in the dark recesses of our soul? What happens when this beast unifies with the beasts of others around us? Does it grow into what the Christian Church labels the devil? Is the devil our collective beast?


Anyway, back to my meditation. The human soul fell away from its ‘demon’ relatively quickly. It seems that the soul believed it had become the demon but something drew both of them to me. I perceived it as a weariness on both of their parts. They were simply tired of being outcasts. It kind of makes sense. Division and hatred are exhausting and the union between soul and demon can only go on so long before it begins to wear away. Eventually, entropy takes over and the gravitational pull of the Being/Divine Light proves to be too tantalizing to resist. We all grow weary of being lonely, of being split off, of believing our lies eventually. Perhaps this is the true hope for all beings?


I’ll digress a bit and talk about non-doing. In the non-doing practice, eventually it’s possible to exert no effort. It’s possible to be completely at peace. Further, it’s possible to recognize the origin of all doing is not from within the separate self. Once this happens, the striving can cease (albeit usually only temporarily) and you’re nothing. Being nothing comes as such a relief! And its healing, too. You can feel the gentle way that non-doing heals the rifts in the soul, correcting misconceptions and bringing sweet succor and release. It’s beautiful and there is no effort.


It seems that when a human soul recognizes its innermost nature as the Divine–understanding that it is an emanation of the Divine and the Divine is really doing everything–others are naturally attracted to the soul. These may be corporeal or non corporeal entities. So, when I sit, sometimes I encounter these entities. They are drawn to my location out of a desire to transform/dissolve. When they pass through my field, this transformation happens. It is nothing that I am doing, though, and I am not in control of it. I simply sit there. Oh, I feel my heart respond and am moved by their experience but I am no longer trying to solve their problems. Instead, I just continue to sit.


Yesterday, the human soul fell away pretty quickly. I don’t know where he went but he felt like he was released and tasted some sort of freedom. In any case, he continued on his journey and I had no further contact with him.


The demon stayed behind. It was pretty horrific - I won’t go into detail but it appeared as a demonic goat or sheep. Although grotesque, I wasn’t put off by it and welcomed it into my presence, even pressing my ‘face’ into its fleece. This being welcomed had an effect on it and I could feel it warring with itself. Part of it was very wedded to its identity as being a monster and part, as I mentioned above, was tired. 


In the end, nothing much really changed yesterday. It kept going back and forth between surrendering and relishing its demonic nature. I didn’t seek to convince it one way or the other, just allowed it to be as it was. I may be naive but nothing in the Imaginal, no matter how fierce, scares me. I don’t feel threatened, I don’t worry about being harmed.


Today, I was surprised to find that the goat/sheep demon had changed. Yesterday, I was aware of it continuing to reside within me throughout the day. I know this sounds creepy but it wasn’t. I was really unconcerned because I could feel it in my heart. This morning, it was more like a baby sheep than a demon. Almost embryonic, like a lamb developing in the womb. I left it alone, again - neither pushing it away or doing anything to mess with it.


At some point, I realized that the transformation of this former demon was bound to get the attention of its ‘master’ and became aware of another entity who appeared very much like the classic representation of a devil: A winged, red demon with cloven hooves and a horrific visage filled with teeth. Its appearance brought forth the one I call Apis, the mysterious entity who always sits to my left during meditation. It also brought forth the old god I’ve written about before, the one that I have memory of being pledged to as a child in my previous life. This is a very primitive, almost animalistic god. A god of life and death, beyond the reach or knowledge of a human heart. (I get the sense that the human heart–that organ that can love and feel deeply–is a relatively recent development in the evolution of spiritual beings.)


Both Apis and the god were there as my protectors, although I didn’t feel threatened. Perhaps it wasn’t me that they were there to protect because I became aware of holding the lamb and bringing it out of that realm into a different one. This new realm was the realm of the god and appeared as a beautiful winter wood, illuminated by early morning light that was various shades of amethyst and sapphire and crystalline white.


I held the lamb in my arms, looking around. The god’s servants appear as wolves. They are pretty ferocious beasts, not what you could call friendly. They snarl at me and bare their fangs but don’t ever try to harm me. Maybe because they are so ruthless and vicious, I actually enjoy cuddling against them, wrapping my arms around their necks and pushing my face into their fur. I don’t think they quite know what to make of this.


In any case, I called forth the wolves with an offering of my ‘blood,’ cutting my wrist and allowing the blood to splatter around us in the snow. Soon, the wolves materialized, drawn by the scent of my blood. I had called them to look after the lamb while I went back to Apis and old god and, strange as it seems, these ferocious creatures did as I asked. It seems like they would have torn the lamb to shreds as soon as I put it down but they did no such thing. I left them as they formed a protective ring around the otherwise clueless little creature. (I just write this stuff - I know how weird it sounds!)


Once back with Apis and the old god, I discovered they had left and I was alone with the winged demon. In remaining with it, I realized that it was a former angel that had fallen. Further, I understood that angels lack a capacity that human souls possess: It’s related to our human ability to be open to the full spectrum of experience, embodying the basest and most destructive impulses as well as the most sublime. Because we have this capacity, because it all exists within us, we can navigate it all and not get led astray. If you don’t naturally have access to the full spectrum of light and dark inside yourself, it’s much easier to be co-opted. (Of course, humans can get led astray just like anything else, it’s just that we have the ability to develop an inner compass that points to the truth. With that compass, we can find our way out of trouble.)


Angels need us just as much as we need them. In some ways, we humans are much weaker and more chaotic than they are but we also have the capacity to be more powerful. We can be present with great evil and never lose knowing of our inner nature but some angels can be corrupted because of their natural ignorance of darkness. I’m sure there are many kinds of angels and not all of them are the same. Nonetheless, there are some who can be corrupted. My guess is that it is us humans who pollute them, although I’m not entirely sure about that.


I didn’t do anything with the demon. I just continued to do my practice, feeling my heart respond naturally to it. When darkness arose, I felt not evil but the Absolute as the Beloved. I remained, moved and yet completely still. Gradually, the demon transformed. I knew when I looked around and found that we were standing in the midst of an ornate room of white and gold that the demon had been redeemed. Before me was a being of light and gold and white, almost like a Greek god but distinctly within the Judeo Christian logos. This was the gold and white city, the place of angels and saints and all the others. 


It was not my city but I could recognize the nourishing truth of the place and don’t doubt that I will be called back there at some point again. In some ways, I have no home in the Imaginal but am at home everywhere. I see now that the old god’s choice of me was a wise one. I am like a bridge between worlds, able to traverse many realms without any particular effort. It all lives within me. It is all my home.


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