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  • Jaime Lang

Sickness and Spiritual Growth

There is a pattern I have noticed in relation to sickness and spiritual growth, both in my own life and when I have observed people around me. My interpretation of what it is and why it happens is based on explanations I have heard from others interpreted through the voices that have been with me since I was around eight. The specific voice that helps me interpret events is one who has the archetype of a mentor or a very strict teacher. I don’t actually know his name, he told me that I get too hung up on how things sound and the labels of things need less importance, so I usually just refer to information that he and the other voices provide as coming from “them” or “the voices”. If you can relate to this pattern and find this explanation helpful, then you can apply it to your own life and if not, then that’s okay too. It is a less solid concept without as much traditional research or validity to back it up. I just want to throw it out there because I feel that it may be more applicable with the changes coming in and because when I was first learning about these new concepts it was really important to me to find stories that I could relate to. If this can be one of those stories that helps to shed light on someone else’s predicament, then that seems like a positive thing to me.

The pattern that I am referring to is that when a person is right on the cusp of pursuing a big energetic shift they seem to get sick and have a bunch of difficulties erupt in their lives. Sometimes people will start to get physically sick and sometimes emotionally – often they will experience symptoms of both and these feelings might be accompanied with a series of other challenging circumstances. It seems to occur when a person is about to act in a way that will eventually change their self-concept and the structure of their life. This could be described as similar to the dark night of the soul which I’ve heard talked about, but in my opinion, it is slightly different.

The dark night phase seems to occur when a person is making up their mind to take a new path of growth and their old belief systems and structures begin to fall away. This period of growth is distressing and is often accompanied by feelings of disappointment, disillusionment, despair, and anxiety. When a person experiences the dark night of the soul, they feel that there is nothing to trust or hold onto and it is as though the world they knew before was an illusion, but they have not yet found a new place to reside. It can be a really painful period when things like perception, faith, and knowledge are brought under such intense scrutiny and even though it is temporary, while going through it the inaccessibility of certainty can feel endless. This isn’t the pattern I’m referencing right now, though.

The pattern of sickness I’m talking about often comes awhile after the dark night period. After a person has grappled with and been stripped away from their previous worldview, they start to rebuild a foundation of understanding that brings them more into alignment with themselves. As they do this new options and opportunities come their way, allowing them to physically create the foundation of their new life and as they undertake these steps in bigger and bolder ways they will typically come to a certain crossroads. The sickness seems to show up when the person comes to this crossroad and commits mentally or sometimes subconsciously to continue with their new path but have not yet taken action to solidify that commitment. It is as though a person can sense energetically the significance of the choice they are about to make and suddenly everything in them that doesn’t vibrationally match up to that choice will magnify or revolt. The way that it is explained to me this close to what is happening.

To understand how this works you need to understand that choices we make have energetic ripples which can have a significant impact on our lives and the world around us. These choices have vibrations which pull in experiences that are similar while pushing away those that are dissimilar. As you choose along a path that is different from your previous experience you are unleashing a series of new energetic ripples which will vibrate at a different level than you have been accustomed to. As this happens new circumstances and opportunities come in and you feed that new momentum so that it becomes more dominant in your life experience. There will come a certain point when you will have accumulated enough momentum for that new vibration that it will become the more dominant vibration. At that point you will usually have an opportunity move more profoundly into your new vibrational reality. This is also the point where you will start to see the sickness appear.

The way the sickness itself is explained to me is that the intensity of it mimics the level of dissonance between the previous energy field and the new one, and that it does not show up as a deterrent or because anything is actually revolting within you. It is not some kind of test or punishment. It is just the feeling of the old things that cannot hang on to the new energetic field falling away as you embrace your new being more fully. The analogy that they give me from the Bible is the parable of the new wine requiring new wineskins. The container (the body, mind, and physical make up of you) transforms to hold the new energy you are pouring into your life. This process is to help you so that you are more compatible with the higher vibration you have entered, but it can be physically uncomfortable. The parts of your physical, emotional, and energetic make-up that cannot hold this new energy have to fall away. This is not a bad thing at all, it’s a sign that you have reached the tipping point from which your new life will start to take hold, but as it is occurring it is a good idea to rest, reflect, and allow the energy of healing to take place. It is good to continue to focus on the new energy that you have been choosing to create in your life, but it is also good to relax and let yourself have time to adjust. Moving at a really high pace can be really intense and the voices often remind me that slowing down is a way of showing compassion to the parts of myself that are struggling to adjust. It can be helpful in these times to let yourself slow down and let goals be delayed, knowing that you will still choose in the direction you have been choosing and follow through on the commitment that set the sickness off—but trusting that you do not need to rush it.

Sometimes spiritual growth can be a confusing process because experiences can be paradoxical. You may find yourself flipping between light and shadow aspects—sickness and health, faith and despair. If you notice this along the way, do not panic. It doesn’t mean that anything is wrong. Remember that as we are growing, we are learning about wholeness and you cannot be whole by labeling one side as bad and pushing it away. This means that we get to have the experience of the ups and the downs, the pain and the relief, the illness and the recovery, as part of the movement towards growth and understanding. The energy of love, after all, encompasses both parts and if love is the fundamental energy of being then we don’t get to experience it by pushing away the uncomfortable aspects of living.

Recognizing the love underlying the experience of both halves, does not mean that we have to go crazy looking for pain or push ourselves really hard to into new patterns, it means that we are gentle and understanding of our experiences and allow the sickness to be a sign of growth as well as a call for rest. Instead of viewing it as a deterrent, punishment, or sign that you have messed up you can see it as a symptom of reaching the tipping point and changing the dominant flow of energy in your life. Let that thought soothe you and allow yourself to relax knowing you are there and the momentum will continue to carry. You have time to rest and time to heal and time to be with yourself and consider all the choices you have made that helped you to reach this new level. Be proud of those choices and feel the warmth of recognition of the heart that it took to get you here.

Disclaimer: I’m not a medical practitioner and this should not be taken as medical advice. Regardless of whether a sickness arises because of this spiritual growth pattern or not, you should use your best judgment in how to resolve it and this includes seeing a health professional. The symptoms of illness described above are very real and physical and/or mental and if professional physical or mental health treatment is required, please seek it out, doing so is part of taking care of yourself and showing love to all aspects of who you are.

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