If I presented at a Doctors Office and explained to them how I experience the world I would, without a doubt, be medicated.

I hear voices, see the Gods, have trouble concentrating, have feelings of being watched, sleep erratically, have odd days filled with depression and/or anxiety and can talk to animals. By medical standards this makes me psychotic and then some.

Psychosis is characterised by an impaired relationship with reality. Who’s reality? Is there a correct way to experience yourself or the world we live in?

In the medical world there is no spiritual one; at present it simply isn’t considered. So hearing voices would never be put down to mediumship, a psychic opening or a haunting. Paranoia would never be labelled as called for due to a psychic attack, having picked up an attachment or simply being sensitive to the energies of those that have passed.

There is the famous quote by Joseph Campbell which states:

…and I stand by this.

By recognising what is truly happening to a person and seeing that it is not something pathological, not something you have to live with forever, but something transformative that allows you to walk forward more whole and with a better understanding of reality as YOU experience it.

A spiritual emergence (sometimes called an emergency) is when your spirituality comes and figuratively punches you in the face. This can happen spontaneously at any time but sometimes following meditation, severe physical ill health, after using mind altering substances or suffering a trauma. The classic initiatory experience of the shaman or going through a kundalini awakening would both be deemed as a spiritual emergence and could be very traumatic if you do not understand what is happening to you.

After a period of working through these energies you can often come out with new sensitivities to energy, spiritual gifts and understand more how the universe truly works.

Other times (especially if you have suffered childhood trauma) our psyche just needs a bit of a reorder after being in a disordered state for so long and we all know from cleaning our houses that sometimes it has to get a little messier before it can be reordered. It is a renewal process where the acute episode is natures way of putting things right and in a more spiritual society we would be able to recognise this. We would know it isn’t permanent.

So are you psychotic or spiritual? Depends upon who you ask.

“It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”

Jiddu Krishnamurti