This article, by guest blogger Susan Trapp, explores the author’s ideas re: mental illness, spirituality and recovery. Susan Trapp is one of the author’s of Evening: the frayed edges and Evening: the frayed edges: Ripples of Recovery.
Another Idea of Mental Illness
By Susan Trapp
Spiritual emergence is sometimes called mental illness. It is the experience of spirituality merging with daily life. It is how a person relates to his or her spiritual side. It is how one develops empathy for his fellow man. Today it is called recovery and one of the signs of recovery is hope.
You will find many ways mental illness causes one to focus only on oneself. There are many people who refuse to go through the process of finding oneself. It is even harder sometimes when one has to deal with chemical treatment. Sometimes it causes one to keep from connecting to others. One option is constant sleeping. Sleep can be a form of denial. Being highly sedated keeps us from dealing with those feelings that keep us from joining with others in community. These feelings are the healing needed to merge our spiritual side to our physical side.
When viewing mental illness this way one wonders how does one merge the spiritual with the physical. Some pray constantly. Religion gives meaning and order to life. It also gives hope to community. One sings and prays with other people. One shares the weekly experiences with others. One also prays for those who spread hope for people in other parts of the world. One keeps community as a spiritual merging with the physical continuing in the form of recovery. Hope is a big form of recovery.
Another form of recovery is finding meaningful work in the community. Work can be a very individualized profession but all work is relating to the community. It is about reaching out and connecting with others in our own way. Giving to others can help our spiritual side merge with our physical.
All life is part of this process. Life is constantly creating and recreating itself. We move with it in its onward rush. This is all part of community. No one is left out or left behind. We cannot see the goal. It is not ours to understand. It is all part of a master plan of which we are a part. We do at times see glimpses of eternity or just where our next step will lead us. What an adventure we have in store. Who says there is no life in mental illness and the rest of our lives will lead us nowhere. We are just on another path. One even better than we can imagine.