Re- emerging in 2 weeks time!

I’m finally listening to my own advice and going off to ‘fill my own cup’ for two weeks… two weeks of self- care, two weeks offline; I haven’t allowed myself to do this since my awakening six years ago – it makes me feel wobbly; who am I beyond this work? It’s time to find out…

full-cup

Oh, and here’s a very grounded but necessary parting statement;

 In order to comply with the new data protection requirements (GDPR), I have to let you know that your personal data has been collected so that we have contact information to communicate with you in regard to your participation in the Emerging Proud project and Emerging Kind sister project. We keep this information confidential within the project and do not share it with third parties. You may withdraw your consent to receive this information at any time by unsubscribing to the blog; your contact information will therefore no longer be available to us. 

On that note, I’ll love you and leave you!

Have a wonderful few weeks you lovely people; I’ll see you on the other side! ❤

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Commemorative Print 2018 due for publication in June

Since the 2nd International #EmergingProud day events on the 12th May we’ve been in a race to compile the 2nd Commemorative Print to be ready for you all to reflect on the amazing stories shared over the last year.

I am delighted to announce that this year, not only will this beautiful book contain stories, artwork and information donated by our wonderful community; it will be officially PUBLISHED by the specialist Mental Health Publisher; CHIPMUNKA! 

Chipmunka Founder, Jason Pegler, and I have been connected virtually for some time and it seems so fitting that we work in collaboration with our shared vision; to spread awareness and end mental health stigma. Jason set up Chipmunka Publishing in 2002 to give a voice to those living with mental health problems, after he himself had a period of hospitalisation in 1992. His renowned autobiography, ‘A Can of Madness,’ was released in 2002. Chipmunka is more than just a unique publisher, it is a social enterprise, and Jason won The New Statesmen’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2005.

Watch out for the launch announcement; the 2018 Commemorative Print should be available by mid June…

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This limited edition commemorative print features a collection of the blogs and artwork from the last year since the launch in May 2017. These amazing personal stories of those who #Emerged Proud, aims to change the negative prognosis dialogue which mainstream psychiatry portrays today, and provide validation and HOPE to those who might be struggling. 

Follow the blog to find out how to get hold of your copy! Thank you for your support ❤

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Calling ‘fierce wise women with bold dreams’ to take part in Lorraine’s ‘Soul Sanctuary Alchemy’ …

When we talked to our friend, Amazonian Psychologist Dr Lorraine Van Tuyl a few weeks ago, she told us about her plan to launch her innovative ‘Soul Sanctuary’ course.

Now you can take part! Be the first to experience Lorraine’s magic with her…

Emerge with Grace and Guidance from the Sacred 7 Directions

Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states that we have to go through.  Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it.  This is a kind of death.

–  Anais Nin

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CALLING ALL FIERCE, WISE WOMEN with BOLD DREAMS
✨
Are you secretly PLAYING SMALL because you’ve been waiting for a BIGGER, MORE CONSCIOUS PLAYING FIELD?
🦋
ACHING to EXCAVATE your deep well of wisdom, courage, and soul-callings to help HEAL and RENATURE our denatured, patriarchal world?
🌿
It’s high time for us to shift from swimming upstream in today’s left-to-center margins to:

• fully exhaling and deeply inhaling in circles of like-minded, sensitive soul si-stars

• feeling centered, effective, and celebrated when doing our souls’ important work

• catalyzing and expanding our GAME-CHANGING IMPACT

• raising global consciousness and tipping the scales toward collective wholeness

• creating a socially and ecologically just, renatured, post-patriarchal world

My signature self-empowerment online course is designed to help guide ambitious, high-caliber women out of their 24×7 rut or hamster wheel and into a more spacious, supported and intentional 2x4x7 soul sanctuary and leak-proof chrysalis for magical self-discovery, momentum, and deep transformation.

Many times it’s the pain of our unfulfilled purpose that causes us dis-ease and despair, so energize your soul connections, callings and effectiveness for your optimal health and well-being.

Our soul sisters are awakening their sleeping dragons in mass numbers—and you too may have gotten the memo that the time to step us is now.

I invite you to join us on this adventure. It will be monumental.

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE

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The Grace of Psychosis, by Chris Cole

The Grace of Psychosis, by Chris Cole

It was such a joy to be invited to take part in Chris’ podcast as I’d been so impressed by his work. Finding out that my work had been part of Chris’ validation makes my heart sing, and as he says;

“Transpersonal psychology saved me, and I will forever be grateful to the renegades, pioneers, and misfits who were willing to call out the status quo and express something deeper and richer available to the human psyche.”

Now Chris is a true pioneer himself, turning his own pain into fuel to support others who too are ‘Waking up Bipolar’…

Chris Cole

This is a great honor to be able to write something for Emerging Proud. When I think back on my story of awakening, I’m very careful to recognize that what I think of as “psychosis” and what I think of as “spiritual awakening” were never separate to begin with. The unity that I suddenly realized, the utter and complete wholeness of the universe and my place in it, was both excruciatingly painful and profoundly liberating.

Much of my pain came from the part of me that didn’t even know it was possible to have a spiritual awakening. The pain of my life, which precipitated a break from consensus reality, invited spiritual awakening in the form of psychosis. Then, over many years, the pain of psychosis invited further spiritual unfolding—which continues today. This great dance between form and formlessness, what we think of as “mental illness” and “spiritual awakening,” has twirled me around ever since—at times like an elegant waltz, and sometimes like entering nonconsensual tango with a tornado. Balance can be hard to come by, especially without stepping on a few toes.

I’ve come to recognize my story as quite predictable, and yet every story is unique and necessary, if not for anyone but ourselves. What’s so absurd and ironic about the predictable nature of awakening is that we don’t get to understand how universal the experience of awakening is until we’ve already integrated the experience. I began with terror in the face of such a vast expanse, and now I make my living validating such chaos in others. What a trip.

In my original upheaval, a great euphoria overtook my nervous system after days of binge drinking, drug use, and failing to sleep adequately. This also followed a tragedy in which I was reminded of all the grief I had yet to grieve for my dear childhood friend, who died in a car crash a couple years prior. The euphoria seemed to erupt in compensation of a deep reservoir of sadness, as well as an existential dread of death.

I realized I lost my identity when a friend called out at to me the bus stop, “Hey Chris!” I seemed to have no affinity for my name, or even my body, and I was suddenly unashamed of all the painful thoughts that had previously consumed my mind. I confessed immediately, with a great sense of exuberance, how relieved I was to not have this body and to not be this person who was having such a hard time living.

What happened next was perhaps the most logical deduction I made the entire day: This is what God feels like; I must be Jesus. My spiritual psychosis was made more extreme, in part, by the belief that Jesus was the only one who had any conscious communion with God. I then made my next deduction: Since I’m Jesus, surely I should have some disciples. Who wouldn’t want to follow Jesus? This is what we’ve been waiting for all these years, right? But the campus police, my family, my local priest, and the psychiatrists all had something different in mind. I would be hospitalized, medicated, and diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Most painfully, I would be told there was nothing spiritual about my experience.

Over the years, I spent a great deal of time trying to understand what happened to me. An unshakable knowingness marked my search, even when I didn’t understand if I knew anything at all. Some quality of spirituality had permeated my consciousness to the extent that not even the most firm and consistent messages of delusion could break me of the spell. I touched Truth that day in psychosis, and my life could never be the same. My conviction felt as big as the Buddha touching the earth as his witness. I wanted validation so badly, and yet, I was okay keeping my awakening a secret if necessary. Such secrecy has a way of festering and harboring madness. I found that isolation and grandiosity go hand-in-hand. This challenge continues today, and I hope movements like Emerging Proud may accelerate the unveiling of all these secrets truths we each hold as self-evident.

My truth, which can be unpopular but is nonetheless my truth, is that I ended up accepting both conventional treatment and spiritual teachings. I want to be clear that I never accepted treatment because I thought I was broken. I finally accepted treatment because I wanted to be in contact with my world in a way that I couldn’t be without treatment. This of course is not a universal truth. This truth is simply mine. None of our truths are universal truths, so long as we speak from these fallible human bodies. That’s why the earth serves as witness for all of us, because the earth doesn’t have ears and can’t hear our bullshit. All we can ever touch is this unspeakable moment.

I have come to terms with the truth that I have a different orientation—a different neurological orientation—than the majority of humanity, with regards to emotionality, sensitivity, and energetic boundaries. This orientation comes up against the current structure of society in a way that is unfavorable for my relationships and the type of love that I want to bring to the world. How I want to touch my world. If I could wave my magic wand (I already wave it, just not with much impact), the world would bend in the ways that I so often break, and we wouldn’t need things like psychiatry, and we wouldn’t need concepts like disability. We would all take care of each other, and if we saw someone struggling, we would see a reflection of ourselves in them to such an extent that it would be unacceptable for us to continue on the same trajectory. We would bend to each other, without breaking each other. We would bend for each other, and so be unbreakable in Love.

I ended up writing a book, The Body of Chris: A Memoir of Obsession, Addiction, and Madness. I currently host a podcast, “Waking Up Bipolar,” in which I interview people like Katie Mottram, who have greatly touched my heart. When I was researching how to save my life, certain that no one else was going to be able to save it for me, I found so much relief in writings and articulations of spiritual emergence and spiritual emergency. Transpersonal psychology saved me, and I will forever be grateful to the renegades, pioneers, and misfits who were willing to call out the status quo and express something deeper and richer available to the human psyche.

Transpersonal psychology eventually allowed me to abandon my cocoon of spiritual materialism, because I could no longer continue a path of self-deception, which used spiritual emergency as a way to spiritually bypass the reality of a crippled existence. Transpersonal psychology grew big enough to include clinical psychology, just as my awakening had grown big enough to include human fallibility. If it were not for transpersonal psychology, there would be no room in my mind for clinical psychology, and there would certainly be no room in my heart for psychiatry. Nonduality knows no bounds, and so it is. I choose Love.

I started with suffering, which is simply part of human incarnation. My personal version of suffering came through a nervous system capable of producing psychosis under conditions in which others don’t experience such a thing. This spiritual psychosis woke me up from a painful dream of limited humanness, while also waking me up to the immensity of pain I enjoy today. I have come to understand that this precious human birth cannot be fully appreciated without a broken heart. These warrior tears stream unending, insurmountable joy. I have come to know that we’re all waking up in a bipolar universe after all. Such is grace.

Chris Cole offers life coaching for any number of mental health conditions, specializing in bipolar disorder and spiritual emergence. He hosts the Waking Up Bipolar podcast and is the author of The Body of Chris: A Memoir of Obsession, Addiction, and Madness, inspired by his own journey of spiritual unfolding and mental health challenges. Chris operates from a heart-centered transpersonal orientation, gleaned from deep insight into his lived experience combined with years of service to those navigating the intimate terrain of transformative crisis. Learn more about Chris and his work at colecoaching.com.

Chris will be joining me for an #EmergingProud interview in a couple of weeks; don’t miss it! Thank you Chris, for all you are doing for humanity’s waking struggle ❤

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Reflections from the 2nd International celebrations are #emerging…

Feedback from the global #Emerging Proud events last Saturday are starting to flow in, and I wanted to share the powerful reflections so far…

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  • I learned to create more space for more harder to share aspects/parts of me and to connect with others just by being present. Thank you ❤
  • Never before did a meditation session trigger such strong emotions!
  • I felt warm and fuzzy and welcome. Like I am home which is something that rarely happens. Very grateful.
  • The word spiritual no longer has much meaning for me…….my life is as it is and I am who I am
  • Thanks for this space in time – so lovely, peaceful and very: Here NOW – together 🙂
  • What is moving through me – a few hours after the event – is the beauty of it. I was touched to hear that some of the participants experienced powerful emotions and felt more connected to other humans than they had in a very long time.
  • I learned that when not following my souls purpose, this is when depression happens. This is when anxiety happens. Dare to listen within, if that feels uneasy something’s up. It’s a message from above. #eatingdisorder #Emergingproud
  • A breakdown opened a spiritual crisis leading to a shift in consciousness and a new sense of love, healing and universal connection. #spiritual crisis #Emergingrpoud
  • Through healing conversations, we foster human connection, safety and trust and find our way back to each other, where we can share with honesty from our hearts #messageboard #emergingproud
  • Instead of convincing people, the change can come from telling the story in your heart and allow hearts to open in a divine pace.20180512_095944
  • Very interesting event!
  • Nice encounters! Thank you!
  • Great event, but a pity that the psychiatrist cancelled her lecture.
  • Experience is ALWAYS true. So simple, so complicated… I wish that everybody would have a right to their own truth. If only we could really hear each other and our selves. I believe that only in this way “the good” can happen.
  • This has been an important and excellent event. More events like this!
  • The EmergingProud -film is important, as a whole.
  • Good information and event. More good topics!
  • Important to make these definitions what spiritual means and does not mean. For me spirituality equals awareness equals oneness and they include the whole human being – physical, social, psychological. The moment when love overcomes fear.
  • The purpose of human beings is to protect and care, cherish and maintain life.
  • A new me
  • I am very happy to see such events happening, pain and challenges are to overcome
  • Enlightening!!
  • The light that shines through the cracks
  • If the world isn’t crazy I must be nuts! 
  • Great films – powerful messages
  • Somehow we need to get this out into the whole world
  • Spread the light!
  • Can one “recover” or heal from spirituality? Is that a problem or a threat? What is the difference between those changes caused by spiritual awakening and the symptoms of psychosis? Is there a psychosis that can be classified as illness? What are the symptoms of that and how should it be treated? What kind of symptoms should be treated against ones own will in a first place??Tee poem
  • In a way the world is more fragmented and also the sense of community is more differentiated than before.
  • So empowering, joyful for the heart, to hear alternative ideas and viewpoints about “madness”. I feel so inspired and empowered! The value should be returned to these experiences. THANK YOU, you wonderful pioneers! ❤ xxx
  • This event sure was meaningful and important! Many people came to tell us how empowered and validated they felt when leaving the venue.

The International report for 2018 will take some time to complete; due to very positive reasons which will be shared when we have some more clarity, but for now, I’ll leave you with a beautiful Kirtan from the NYC event…

 I’ve got shivers!! ❤ 

 

 

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A great opportunity to take part in vital WHO research about the impact of narrative in recovery

I’m looking for people to share their experiences of “psychosis” /spiritual awakening who aren’t in touch with secondary mental health care, and haven’t been for the last five years.

Dr Rose McGranahan

Unit for Social and Community Psychiatry

WHO Collaborating Center for Mental Health Service Development

Queen Mary University of London

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Welcome to the NEON Study web pages!

NEON (Narrative Experiences Online) is a large-scale research study running from 2017-2022.  It looks at whether having online access to people’s stories of personal recovery from mental ill health can help people experiencing psychosis and other mental health challenges with their own recovery.

Over the next five years we will be collecting stories from a wide range of sources, with a focus on stories from people whose voices are seldom heard by mainstream cultures, and gathering them together to form the largest online repository of mental health recovery stories in the world.

We will then be making these stories available for others to view, hear and read in the NEON Intervention, and evaluating in a randomised controlled trial whether people benefit from the NEON Intervention.  We will also look at whether having access to these stories can improve the way mental health workers support people with psychosis.

You can find out more about the study, who is doing the research and how you can get involved using this link: http://www.researchintorecovery.com/NEON

Thank you for your interest in NEON.

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#EmergingProud 2018 initial reflections

Wow, what a day of heart – felt connection around the world happened on the 12th May…

This quote sums up the outcomes of validation from the global events so far

To thine own self be true I’ll be sharing the International report ASAP, but in the mean time, here is a sneaky peak of the reflections from our Norwich Message Board at the end of the day:

  • Thanks to everyone today who were so generous with their time and telling me their stories; it seems that the world is the ‘veil of soul- making’ as Reals said…Yep, I reckon so!

  • A beautiful conversation that connected with with ideas for how society could benefit from more openness about spiritual matters and finding out about each others experiences. Truth and honesty.

  • So priviledged and moved to hear wonderful personal stories and share coping strategies.

  • I had a wonderful, inspirational conversation with x, she is a lovely creative lady, very open and honest and I enjoyed talking to her. I felt very moved by her experience and how she has used that to help others

  • I feel inspired and hopeful for a more connected future

  • So great to speak to people who have had such similar experiences and sharing philosophy and coping strategies

  • Amazing to see the strength, power and growth when a person is open and willing to share and explore various ways of healing themselves.

  • Today is just what I needed! Affirming and validating. Thank you Universe, Katie, the Emerging Kind and all the beautiful souls. Let’s change the world; one kind act or thought at a time!

  • What an inspirational conversation I had with x, I didn’t want it to end, such a great opportunity to met such interesting people at this event. Enjoyed listening and talking to someone who is so positive about their experience and so open and honest; thank you

  • I found another soul sister in x, came away with a full heart and happy tears in my eyes; what courage!

  • Wow! I am so grateful for the opportunity to listen to such a fascinating story of someone’s life. I feel totally inspired. Thank you so much for sharing.

  • Thank you, so many wise words and kindness.

  • Spending time listening, having a deep but light- hearted conversation, making a human connection. Interesting and uplifting.

  • The energy and enthusiasm bursting out of x is electrifying and infectious. A minute in her company is like being supercharged with positivity!

  • It’s not surprising how emotional we feel when hearing what has been endured. So inspired by the courage to let go and keep going…

  • So magical to meet, talk and connect with inspiring and like – minded people.

  • Inspired to hear about coming off medication for bi- polar and self- healing through self- caring. Coming into the Self and full acceptance of all experiences and relationships – discovered we went to the same school!

  • I found out about how a singer / musician helped x through some difficult times through her music. X is now reaching out to help others in the same way she was helped; inspiring!

  • I learned about the need to: connect, reflect and serve. An amazing conversation!

  • A space to be in that felt free and expansive, caring. It is not an everyday experience and imagine, to imagine!

  • Very inspiring people and so brave of them to tell their stories.

  • Totally uplifted and inspired by sharing of personal stories of adversity and the bigger wisdom that emerges….eventually!

  • Totally inspired by how our paths are so similar; different lives but so much in common; really lovely and connecting via the heart.

  • It’s amazing to be around such inspiring people with such brave stories #EmergingProud

  • We are all strong; love self = love others

  • We discussed identity as fluid versus static representation (eg. Diagnosis); how destabilizing and dysfunctional patterns can be helped using art which helps with unlimited expressivity – as a vehicle for production.

  • X is an inspiration. She has an insight into herself that few people her age are yet find and I’m so excited about the good she is achieving for herself and others by following her soul and her life purpose.

  • So may insights, heart-bursting compassion coming from hearing this journey of healing and expanded consciousness. From repressing emotions and addiction to awareness of the multiple facets of what heals and grounds; ‘being the change’. Feeling inspired, connected and heart- warmed.

  • Sat with x and have come away with such a full heart. I’m inspired by her personal process which reflects a courageous honouring of the divine feminine breaking through, following a rupture in her life that could have simply generated pain. For x though, she harnessed this god- given power and insight and is changing the world one chat at a time; amazing!

  • It was so inspiring and validating to hear the story. I will get involved more in helping people understand the connections between difficult times and spiritual experience.

  • Having time to talk with another person who appreciates the depths – to explore ideas that are seldom addressed in society, was very refreshing and enlivening.

  • Just when you question everything the right event comes along with the right people

  • Opening the wider conversation with lots of people, with unique journeys but similar struggles, goes to show how with making connections we can all feel more validated and not alone.

  • Spirituality is important! Not just bio / psycho / social, but even crystals and spirits can help with healing.

  • A great day of deep and meaningful conversations, exploring what really matters!

  • X, driven forwards by his connection to spirit and with lived experience of bringing it back down the mountain is no doubt a wonderful catalyst for healing everyone he is with.

  • It’s been really enlightening speaking with x and the stories we shared really were helpful to hear and comforting to feel acceptance from a shared perspective. I think the concept of the day is really wonderful and helpful in destigmatising and alleviating worry, connected to the transformational process

  • Thank You for today, it really picked me up. I was struggling a bit and I found it so reassuring to listen to the stories of others who have been going through this a lot longer than I have and have turned it into something really positive. The similarities with my experiences and some of the volunteers was uncanny and them sharing their coping strategies with me will help me in the future I’m sure. We definitely need more events like this in the future.

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Thank you to all who shared, listened and were brave enough to connect.  

We’ll be back to share more reflections very soon … ❤ 

 

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