In this call from March 2019, Jeannie talks about her experience with the dark night of the soul. She reads a poem from St. John of the Cross and talks about from the perspective of the soul, the dark night is good news indeed, but from the perspective of the mind/body, it's quite a trial. She mentions several other resources for people in the dark night as well as resources for trauma that may rise during the dark night. She talks about the nature of trauma and how the dark night and trauma can run concurrently and suggestions for approaching rising emotional material depending upon the level of trauma involved. She talks about the draining away of meaning and the longing for the elemental that happens in the dark night.
Exchange 1 - Participant wonders about the drying up of longing and wants Jeannie to speak to that. Jeannie talks about "the desert" wherein we develop faith -- where the gross rewards of an emotional relationship with the world or with our concept with the Holy dry up and we are weaned and prepared for a finer more direct relationship with the Holy. Jeannie talks about the importance of nature, and simple activities (chop wood, carry water) to put one foot ahead of the other in the moment, abiding in simplicity.
Exchange 2 - Participant is wondering if her son's nervous breakdown at age 12 was a dark night and asks what she can do to support him now that he's 18. Jeannie talks about the role of the parent before 18 and after, holding space and then as a consultant. She likens what we can offer and how we offer it as a waiter who brings something on a tray for the sovereign on the throne, open and willing to have the sovereign wave us away, honoring the young person's sovereignty and self-authority while offering things without agenda.
Exchange 3 - Participant wants Jeannie to talk about the concurrence of health issues and the dark night. Jeannie talks about what a health challenge and the dark night have in common, and stresses the importance of discerning between issues that need addressing, and issues that simply need to be endured and relating to each accordingly.
Exchange 4 - Participant simply wants to come on and be in presence with Jeannie. Jeannie talks about the gold of contact during the dark night with those who have no agenda and can simply be with us, because of the craving for company and the isolated young parts that rise, and the poison of revealing our vulnerable reality to those who are triggered by it and unable to provide support, but instead "schmear" their issues on top of us.
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