Sometimes, life can be very difficult: death, divorce, illness, accident, and dismissal, may knock on our door without warning, disconnect us at once from the everyday consciousness and tools we usually have at our disposal for problem solving. In the face of a major crisis in life, most people may find that the pain threatens to drown them into the depths from which there is no going back.
Paula (pseudonym) came to a personal meeting with me in the midst of a crisis related to infidelity. She found out that Roberto, her husband of twenty years, had been having a serious affair with his secretary for four years, and he informed her that he wanted to leave the house and live with his lover.
When we are in an emotional storm and looking for help (therapist, friend or teacher) we are actually looking for someone who can contain the intensity of our pain: who can listen to us empathetically and offer a firm shoulder. On the other hand, we will feel even worse in the company of a person that our pain is “too much to handle” and tries to ignore it, or alternatively a person who completely identifies with it. This is what happened to Paula when she told her parents about the affair: her father just got up and went to watch TV (ignoring) and her mother went into hysteria (identification) and said that even before the wedding she knew Roberto was a bastard and it was a pity Paula did not want to hear her. Maybe that was true, but for Paula it did not help in the moment of crisis, and so she came to talk to me.
There are different methods of mental healing and I personally believe that the deepest healing can take place precisely where the one who extends the help is able to stand in the shoes of the sufferer, cross the bridge to his world and be present in his pain, not out of identification but out of deep empathy and a spiritual vision of his soul (This is of course the opposite approach to many psychologists who actually emphasize the need to maintain objectivity and “look from the outside” at their patient).
Thus, for several long sessions we “we sat shiv’ah” (Jewish mourning ritual) on the marriage that ended, and I allowed her to express feelings of anger (expressed in a desire to murder Roberto and his secretary), deep despair (expressed in suicidal thoughts), fear and loss of direction. I intentionally use the phrase “shiv’ah” because just like during the shiv’ah after a person dies, it is not the time to give the mourning advice, explanations, and various comforts. (Which are often an expression of the comforter’s mental inability to stand in the place of the mourning). It is to be fully present in the world of the sufferer.
It was only after the emotional storm phase passed, that I suggested to Paula a conscious decision to grow out of this crisis and focus her energies on a positive direction.
In one of these sessions, I told her that I was sure that with time, hard personal work on herself and help from God, she will be able to choose life again.
“I accept the time and effort I need to put to work on myself. But how can God help me?” She asked puzzled.
My answer, which is the subject of this article, explains how God intervenes in the healing process of the human soul.
“Do you believe in god?” I asked.
“YES” she answered unequivocally.
Considering the positive answer, I could go on to say that the following guidelines can only benefit a person who believes in God or a higher power, it will not benefit a person who pre-defines himself as an atheist. Simply because such a person, in fact his faith, closes the door to divine help.
“Crisis situations are a unique opportunity for spiritual growth”, I said, “because they force us out of comfort zones and mediocre consciousness and force us to go out and look for a new meaning to life.”
Paula nodded in agreement.
“And because of this, a person who is in a deep crisis and knows that all the tools he has had so far are not enough to deal with the immense difficulty he is experiencing, is required to open himself to something new. The first instruction is to surrender and trust in the help that will come from God. Just as described in the book of Psalms “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help?” the answer is “my help cometh from the Lord!”
I saw on Paula’s face that she was not satisfied with the explanation, so I added:
“There is no mystical matter here again. It is simply an inner movement of humility in which the person admits that he has no idea how he will get out of this crisis, and therefore he opens himself up to a new possibility that is not in his head but will come from a higher place. “
The wording helped, and I continued:
“The second and unequivocal instruction is to stay away from all negatives, such as hatred, envy, self-pity and a desire for revenge. A person who has lost a close person, whose loved one decides to leave him or whose illness is knocking on his door, can easily feel angry, ask bitterly: “Why me?” And feel a deep resentment towards life. The problem with these emotions is that they are fundamentally different from the light and therefore a person who is stuck with negative emotions does not allow the famous law of attraction (remember the book “The Secret?”) To operate its action. The negative rejects the positive, the darkness the light.”
“Paula smiled “which means I ‘m supposed to help God help me?”
“Exactly!” I answered and gave an example to make things even more understandable. “Imagine that you want with all your heart and soul to help someone, but this person is closed and locked in negativity. Can you help him? Will something you say enter his heart? No! In the same way help from the light will not be able to touch whoever chooses to sink into the darkness.”
“So, you’re saying that help from God does not come in person but through the law of attraction?” Paula asked.
I smiled “Very true! God does not send us SMS but answers our prayers by His laws that are in the creation. Our inner state attracts identical forces and returns to us strengthened in the form of help by another law that exists in the creation, the law of mutuality.”
“Can you give a real example of how this mechanism works?”
“Certainly” I replied “I have endless examples because everything I do in my life is based on my absolute confidence in God and the laws of the universe. But first let me give you the next two guidelines.”
Paula nodded in agreement.
“The third instruction is to agree not to know when help will arrive. A person who is in deep sorrow, just wants the pain to stop, is impatient. The third instruction is to take a deep breath and wait patiently.”
“The fourth instruction is to agree not to know what the cure for pain will be. As mentioned, a person who is in a state of deep crisis is on the edge, and any solution he can think of, and all the thoughts that run through his mind and seek relaxation are poor compared to the intensity of the pain. The fourth instruction asks us to dedicate ourselves to the unknown, to agree not to know how help will come and what form it will take.”
“Whoever succeeds in following these guidelines” I said in conclusion “will benefit in a way people who do not know this mechanism, will call a miracle.”
I then told Paula about my ardent prayers for financial aid to ALMA INSPIRA when I felt the lack of financial means threatened the continuation of our activities as a non-profit organization. The “answer” to my prayer was a generous donor “who fell in love” with the project.
I told her about crises in my personal life and how after a prayer “came to me from heaven”: solutions that did not occur to my usual mind, people who suddenly appeared in my life and extended the most accurate help and an inner sense of calm accompanied by the promise that “everything will be fine.”
Nothing in this whole process was easy for Paula. Even after going through the emotional storm phase and in her heart the decision to come out of the crisis stronger, there were still many negative feelings of resentment and revenge that were expressed in a destructive desire to punish Roberto, isolate him from his children and take as much money out of him.
But in the end, she succeeded, and it was a special joy for me to attend her wedding with the man of her choice. A man who was much more suitable for her than her first husband, someone who could have reached her life only after the mental and spiritual process she went through.