Holotropic Spontaneity and Carl Rogers I

A lot of this is about spontaneity.

Spontaneity of course can manifest in the “sudden solution” and “sudden inspiration” experienced by most people now and then, often described by artists or scientists etc. It’s dubbed the “Breakout” by Herbert Benson. Artists know the difference between real inspiration welling up, which is natural, and that which is calculated. The key in all these effects is their appearance from outside the system one thinks of as “oneself”.

Spiritually Transformative Experience works in just the same way. It is a natural welling-up, whether it is deliberately sought or unexpected.

When Kundalini comes, for example, sometimes it is dramatic:

Suddenly, with a roar like that of a waterfall, I felt a stream of liquid light entering my brain through the spinal cord… I experienced a rocking sensation and then felt myself slipping outside of my body, entirely enveloped in a halo of light…

— Gopi Krishna, Kundalini (1967)

One day, when I was meditating… an incredible power rushed through my spine to the top of my head… My whole body was burning… I felt as if my head would explode with energy…

— Hiroshi Motoyama, Theories of the Chakras (1981)

As I was running energy around the orbit… I saw a brownish-gold coil of powerful energy… it had a head like a viper and began to come up my spinal column… when it reached the skull this time there was no mercy and no stopping it… It was as if the top of my skull blew off and I was radiating up into a fountain of light…

— Glenn Morris, Path Notes of an American Ninja Master (1993)

But the welling-up I’ll write about in this series is quieter, and more of an initial preparation in many ways, forming a ground for experience to come. It’s also about coming to see one’s own personality and thus is not merely a quiet process, but it’s a gradual one, generating a new personality that is truer to the soul.


2 responses to “Holotropic Spontaneity and Carl Rogers I

  • martingifford

    The Flow entry in Wikipedia has similar perspectives:


    I would add that although I found these realisations important, and even fundamental, they did not help me with my practical life problems. They were transcendent, i.e. timeless and therefore useless for issues relating to time. The only benefit for time-based life is that they stop you from searching in the wrong place (possessions, status, money, relationships) for that kind of fundamental and reliable fulfilment.

    • Jason Wingate

      Whoah there! No indeeed, Flow is definitely a different concept (although Csikszentmihalyi tends to be grouped among the Humanists with Rogers).

      All the things to follow in this series are absolutely based on sorting out issues, ordinary practical issues, within time. As I said in the last para, this is about regenerating the personality to be truer to the soul — it’s certainly and definitely not about focusing on the soul/transcendence, and forgetting the personality! Couldn’t be further from it. (That’s why it works as an initial preparation for transcendence.)

      Nor, in case I’m unclear, is it about trying to tell anyone where they should focus in life, what is good for them and what is materialist and “bad”, getting them to enter into some other state of efficient bliss whilst their life goes on hold, abandon their personal way or issues in favour of some other state that overrules these, or anything of the sort. It is just the opposite, exactly about resolving issues in the ordinary mind, in a way that is completely personal, that delivers the real person to themselves, over time but spontaneously, deeply healing the personality.

      If you just let me get into it at a fairly easy pace, so as to include readers of different backgrounds, I think it’ll become clearer as we go…

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