THE FORCE LESSON 7

 

Before we dive into the possibilities of the Force, I want to talk with you about a some concerns you should be aware of before engaging in using the Force.

Spiritual Escapism & Addiction can come in many forms. And almost always it has a lot to do with one’s emotional state. The truth is, no matter how skilled you are, it is not hard to fall into the trap of using the spiritual to evade what you are experiencing in the real world. Yes, even a highly skilled shaman can fall into this trap.

I’m not saying this from the perspective of theory, but rather that I’ve witnessed this happen to several people over the years. And at one point in time, before I found the Jedi Path, I was a victim of exactly this. At the age of 16, nearly a year before a dear friend forced me to join a Jedi Order, I was given a…we’ll call it “prophetic” vision of futures where people I was leading into spiritual endeavors would be damaged heavily by my introducing them to spiritual matters. Some found themselves seeking out spiritual highs via drugs, some refused to leave the Astral Realms because being there was better than dealing with their lives on the outside, some sought out spiritual experiences because they wanted to feel special and the attention of the spirits around them, some were led to a life where they damaged others. The scary part wasn’t just that this was going on around my practice, it was that I was oblivious to it and living a great life off the funds I was going to amass from this practice. That was a possible future in my cards if I didn’t start wising up on what I was doing, and how I was approaching spiritual matters as it concerned others.

I was being called out of that life. And in many respects, it created it’s own damage to my psyche. Over the years, I was led into a life where I could better witness the amount of damage that can occur when a person is not aware of the damage diving into spiritual matters can produce.

In the lecture “Know Your Voice” I discussed one possible problem that can arise from engaging in the Spiritual Life: Psychosis. It’s not something I just pulled out of a hat or even researched. It was something I witnessed, and even was a part of creating. I caused it before I had that “prophetic vision”, my best friend’s life was damaged heavily by encouraging her to come with me onto the Astral Plane and fight battles that ultimately amounted to no results for myself, her, and others in my middle and high school years. Her psychosis was informed by her lack of self-esteem, partially brought on by the fact she learned she was adopted and unwarranted resentment towards her adopted parents whom she felt showered more affection towards their eldest blood child. Her story has a tragic end, but at least this can be said- by the end she realized her parents weren’t the monsters she though they were. She acknowledged that they did the best they could with both her and her brother given their very different needs.

Psychosis isn’t the only thing I’ve witnessed either. I’ve witnessed emotional damage done by people in authority with the best meaning of intentions. They made promises via prophecy that never came true, and insisted that if only the person believed they would be able to access these prophetic rewards. Truly believing exactly what they were saying, they caused a great deal of pain because the prophecies were never delivered. Yet people in their congregations continue to latch on with hope. While it bred despair amongst those who felt they were doing their best to be good followers of the faith (and not just Christian, I’ve witnessed this amongst pagan traditions as well).

I’ve witnessed people as skilled as a certified shaman, long trained clergy members of places such as Sacred Well Congregation & Circle Sanctuary, and as young on the path as a few days, get caught up in life only to want to let go of everything and let something else take over. And finally, I’ve witnessed what happens when people to turn to the spiritual to attack others because they cannot find it within themselves to remove toxicity around them.

These all come down to one’s emotional state. When a person doesn’t want to deal with consequences of their actions, or they have been beaten down so far that they don’t feel anything else can save them but something higher, they will turn to that higher power and seek what they feel they (rather than actually) need. And what this does is damaging. It takes you away from life, and from fulfilling a purpose.

And this is why it is so relevant to the Jedi Path that anyone who wishes to claim the title Jedi in their life become aware of their intentions, their emotional well-being and the impact of their actions (be it inaction or direct action): Jedi are suppose to be active in the world around them. Our Path is defined by the action we take to improve the world, and if we’re not in this realm doing something for it then we are actively hurting it.

To fully understand that, however, one must understand that it doesn’t have to be something that is rather grand, like starting a non-profit organization. It is a simple as removing yourself as an obstacle to the healing process of the world. If you are addicted to a drug, you are actively hurting others around you- whether you want to admit it or not. By harming your body, you are causing emotional trauma to those you love, and they are constantly trying to work on helping you when perhaps they need to be working on something within themselves. Social Addicts drag others into their addiction as well, which creates it’s own problems later down the line. Depending on just how terrible your addiction is, it may lead you to a life of crime. Meth Addicts in Pelzer, SC- for example- usually lived on the streets, and relied heavily upon theft to fuel their addiction; they were able to get the food they needed by attending a church each week that operated as a Food Pantry…but the church was less interested in resolving a problem, and more interested in using it as a way to convert people to Christ…which in it’s own way prevented people from embracing what they could have offered.

Just by becoming a productive member of society, and working on yourself, you can fully embody the basic values of the Jedi Path. Because it removes you from the pool of people that need aid and more focus can be placed upon those that cannot pull themselves out of it.

But these are practical matters, right? What about the spiritual side of things? How can galavanting on the Astral Plane create issues for people around you? Especially if you do it on your own time?

I can understand how one might wonder about that- it’s because it takes you away from others that want a meaningful relationship with you. In my own family, I’ve seen the damage that my father’s spiritual pursuits into the occult caused him to latch so hard onto this idea that he was special, he used it as a way to cultivate relationships with people outside of his own family. And then he’d come home and abuse his family.

Another family member has everyone worried about him, because he engages in spiritual battle with spirits that seem to bring more harm to him than him to them. He needs the war, and that traces back to his PTSD. The problem is that he’s brought others into his endless war by talking about it amongst his church members. Some of which have felt their own afflictions and asked for his help, while others have joined him and taken time away from their families to aid in this endless battle with demons. All the while, this has come to be worrisome as other members in the family recluse from him out of fear he’ll invite something into their lives, or out of concern that he’s not cultivating a relationship with Christ the way they believe he should.

Like in my 16 year old self’s vision, you may be oblivious to what damage you are causing yourself and others as you dive into your studies of manifesting the Force in your life. But that’s where the Jedi Compass encourages us to ask questions about our relationships with both ourselves (Interior) and others (Exterior).

So for your assignment, you are to come up with a minimum of 3 questions you can ask yourself periodically as you engage in your personal Force Studies which help call you to reality and discover whether or not you are using your Force Studies as a form of Escapism, if it has become an Addiction, if it has become damaging to others, and/or if it has become about personal glory rather than manifesting the Jedi Path in your life.

 

 
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