Karma’s Story the book is about love and madness, truth and illusion; it is a description of releasing unnatural depression, opting out of ego’s limitations and accepting the natural state of joy. It is about letting go of negativity and embracing unconditional love. It is a “radical truth” story of what happened after an illuminating experience that located insanity in many of my roles, prompting me to question the meaning of “mental health” by leaving everything as I knew it to unconditionally experience what I really am, role free.
After an enlightening experience followed by a severe crash in the other direction, I left my family, my field of work, and my friends and went from BC, Canada to Sedona, AZ, on the greyhound bus with no credit, minimal cash, and a small suitcase. I wasn’t sure if or when I would return. The book I wrote in 2008, which is essentially about going from the deep shame of dysfunction to the heights of ecstasy and beyond, tells the story.
Duality and Consciousness – how the release of compressed energy can be perceived
It would seem fair to generalize the phenomenon of depression as basically compressed energy that with release would engender a greater degree of existential comfort. Resistance to releasing that energy is painful as it’s not natural to hold it inside. Yet, the thought of releasing this energy can be very frightening and every effort can be made to restrain it. There is an inner struggle to contain the energy, as well as to fight to release it, bringing about stagnancy. This effort to keep it restrained or the resistance to releasing energy becomes a source of “dis-ease” and discomfort.
Perhaps sometimes the release of energy occurs so suddenly, and seems so uncharacteristic of the person’s usual behavior, and so inappropriate by society’s definition that it is deemed mental illness. Other times the release goes unnoticed by society and the definition of mental health does not even come into play. In the author’s case, the release that occurred was not recorded by any social establishment that had the power to define it as mental health or illness, however, it was perceived by many close to me as illness.
How the release of this energy is perceived and described, both by the witness and the experiencer, is what defines the release as mental health or mental illness.
The Dual Nature of Existence – How Good vs “Evil” forms the backbone of description
To be-Not to be
… and so on
Crazy – Beautiful
The Author’s Description of Awakening is both
At the outset of the year 2007, I self-identified completely as a loving mom of three kids and two step-kids, a loving wife, loving daughter, sister, niece, worker etc. I was profoundly connected to my family, my profession, my education, yet I was also deleteriously connected to the belief system that one must suffer for love. By the end of that year, all of those connections related to suffering had virtually disappeared and an exploration of love as the ‘a priori’ to life itself began.
With the surrender of duality and the programs that made “me”, as in my ego, up, I realized that “I” was all things in action, yet, no thing, in Reality. “I” was not the roles nor the programs I’d believed myself to be, I was not the ‘ups’ nor the ‘downs’ that occurred in life when the programmer of programs dissolved in a few weeks of freedom from thought itself.
In December 2007, after about a year of retreating to my bedroom with the book “I: Reality and Subjectivity” by Dr David R Hawkins with an interest in pursuing spiritual enlightenment, something shifted in this consciousness that forever changed the way life is viewed. Identification went from thinking myself to be a body, to realizing that I am eternal Spirit.
I realized, with profound clarity, that “I” am not an ego, that ego is an operating mechanism, it’s an editor, a story-teller; it’s the programmer of programs, the buyer of software. But it is not the source of life, it is not the hard drive that plays that software.
“I” am an infinite being and cannot die, only the programming can die, or change, or be transcended altogether.
Everything was realized to be happening spontaneously, of it’s own accord. It was recognized that there is no “doer of deeds”, nor “planner of plans” that existed within the programming, as something greater was witnessed to be aligning the show. Each moment was infinite, expanded, all-inclusive of everything that ever was, and ever will be; without the bought programming as the locus of my beingness, I was absolute freedom of expression.
Consciousness expanded and there was a view from space that arose internally, where it was noted that we only become separate when we identify as a body on the surface. From space, the Earth is only one cell amongst an entire universe of cells. The ego, the programming that says we live on the ground, in houses, with an assortment of attachments and aversions; was noted as a limiting aspect of consciousness.
“i”, as in my limited ego self, have no idea what this thing called life truly is beyond the experience of duality, beyond the programming of science, of intellect, of society, of religion, of all programming available. The essence of God is akin to the vast emptiness of space that seems to be nothing, but is inclusive of everything, and the quality of this essence is profound love. Perhaps surprisingly, the view from space was not lonely or exclusive, but expansive and inclusive. I’d never felt more “at home”.
Identification with the presence of God fully illuminated the body as being an attachment to form, as separation from the soul’s love of God, perhaps a way to communicate God’s love, but little else. It was noted that the body serves many functions, and is indeed a great gift, yet, it’s not necessary for existence and actually can be a block to peace, if it is viewed as all there is to life. Once it’s function is served here, once it’s karma story has been fulfilled, the body becomes no longer necessary. And this is comforting when we think of death, to know that it’s not the end of life.
In that state, everything was apparent. There was a sharp sense of clairvoyance. There was a knowingness of past lives and future events on the horizon; everything was happening spontaneously of its own accord and it was there to see when one looked. With the “view from space” as I called it, nothing was hidden.
*Surrender the pairs of opposites
… and notice the nonduality of consciousness itself that is ‘a priori’ to life’, that is behind, beyond and all encompassing of perception; the silent Self that observes, directs, and loves its existence unconditionally.
How my awakening was perceived and how it came to be a spiritual emergency
Compared to what I used to be- a devoted mother, a student of social work, someone who thought deadlines, words, commitments etc mattered, or held any semblance of meaning, it appeared as if I had completely lost it, gone bananas, taken a giant leap over the edge of sanity itself. From this perspective, I’d never been more sane. Yet, this misconception brought massive chaos and upheaval to my life and to the lives of those who love me for a period of time, and it brought an otherwise sane personality into the realm of mental illness vs mental health. It seemed the experience was described as either crazy, or beautiful, depending on who was being spoken too.
When I left everything to go to another country, I was desperate to re-claim the peace and bliss of the awakening.
Spiritual emergency vs mental illness
Dr Lukoff discusses how to recognize ‘spiritual emergency’ that can happen with spiritual awakening. He describes my experience well- I lost total interest in my family, my job, my roles, and was only interested in the Presence of God. I no longer could relate to putting importance on opinion, thoughts, or even the body itself- they were like falsities, illusions, and a piece of furniture, in that order. It was like people were speaking a different language to me and I could no longer understand what they meant- because they were talking about things that no longer existed to this consciousness as ‘real’.
In order to stay with my family it seemed I had to relearn how to function in society, and that literally meant I had to ‘sober up’ from being divinely drunk, re-energize ego and focus on pain, discourse and falsehood as if they were actually real, when I had been, by the Grace of God, shown the truth. The illumination shone the light on all the discourse of ego as being completely false, totally invalid to the nonlinear of God’s love.
When I went back to work in early 2008, after the illumination at the end of 2007, it was after a few months of ‘re-energizing ego’ that I had a complete mental health breakdown. That which was left of ego after the experience had been rendered incapacitated. Non-linear power took over, inner realization and vision became the motivating forces behind my actions vs any of the preconceived roles I had previously acted within. I literally was no longer a mother, no longer a wife, no longer a daughter – I was Spirit, connected to everything by the Mind of God; however, my family, and everyone else who loved me, could not possibly understand what I was going through. It took several years to be able to carry on with my roles and still be able to identify with the state of spiritual bliss through the practice of Karma Yoga, or “wearing the world loosely”.
Excerpt from Karma’s Story by Darcie French
“The coffee is excellent at McDonald’s at 3:00 am. Karma uses it to swallow a vitamin. Her bowels are in no mood for the density of food and even a French fry looks gluttonous to Karma. She has left behind her husband and children in another country and that act has been somewhat nauseating because the truth of it is, with the depression, the fibromyalgia, the war with Mama and Papa and the unemployment and metal illness, she had been dying to go. She’d purchased a one-way ticket from Vancouver BC to Flagstaff Arizona, a two day, two hour bus-ride putting miles and miles between herself and that which she has known to be familiar. Her beloved husband, like Rosanna Arquette at the end of The Big Blue had said,
“Go find out, my love.””