Ten Dark Night Strategies
Keep Practicing: whatever you do, don’t give up your spiritual practice, even if it seems pointless or scary. If you stop now, you can get stuck in an endless Dark Night and your life will become unlivable.
Have Faith: remember that you are not in control of this process. Trust in the process, in your True Self, God, or however you want to characterize it. Allow yourself to be guided.
Stay Open: remain open to whatever comes up, good or bad. Say yes to it all. Don’t resist.
Maintain Perspective: don’t go too far with extreme practices in order to free yourself faster. It isn’t a race. Maintaining a sense of humor is vital to surviving the worst of the Dark Night.
Don’t Pathologize: try not to interpret the Dark Night as a sign something is wrong. Just remembering it is a normal part of the process can help you to overcome many of the problems. And stay away from psychiatrists – most of them know nothing about non-duality and won’t be able to help.
Embrace the Darkness: it may seem crazy to say yes to darkness and loss, but it’s a symptom of your old ego illusions. Learn to see in the dark. Dispel the darkness by bringing more consciousness to it. If you fight it or push it away, it will only become stronger.
Beware Expectations: if you expect the Dark Night to be hard or scary, then it will be. Be careful of the stories you tell yourself about what is going on. They are all ego narratives and therefore illusory.
Exercise: keep yourself grounded by exercising regularly. Go for walks, do yoga, weight training – anything that keeps you moving and focused on the body so you don’t get lost in your head.
Practice Self-Inquiry: break down the components of the experience by deconstructing what you’re feeling and thinking during your meditation practice. Remember to ask the right questions: Who is thinking? Who is scared? Who is dying? Who is going stark staring bonkers?!
Find a Teacher: find someone who can guide you through the process, but be sure they have been through it themselves. If you can’t find someone, then read spiritual literature, particularly Ramana Maharshi, Nisargadatta Maharaj and Nagarjuna.
The most important thing to remember is this: you are losing your illusions – nothing more. Just let them go.
Read the full article by Jessica Davidson, here.