Dark night of the soul

Anyone actually experience such a thing? I am wonderiing…

Can you be more descriptive?

Yes. Somewhere deep in my soul somewhere there is always a dark night of the soul thing going on. Mostly I try to ignore it and am certain that is a very good thing idea in my case.

I have had periods like this. In my experience, there are two things that cure me completely:

  1. Physical exhaustion from manual labour or strenuous exercise (not the kind of exhaustion you get from overwork)
  2. service to others.

There’s a third option that has helped me at times - religion. I think that some people have spiritual needs that they neglect to nurture. Spiritual needs can be filled in more than one way, though - I don’t mean to suggest that everyone go to church on Sunday. On the other hand it wouldn’t hurt you, either. :wink: Actually, I’d like to check out a (English-speaking) synagogue or an English Roman Catholic service in Taiwan sometime. If any of you do the organized religion on the Sabbath thing, give me a call. I don’t need to sleep in every Sunday.

[quote=“Maoman”]I have had periods like this. In my experience, there are two things that cure me completely:

  1. Physical exhaustion from manual labour or strenuous exercise (not the kind of exhaustion you get from overwork)

  2. service to others.

There’s a third option that has helped me at times - religion. [/quote]

  1. Sex

  2. Sex

  3. Sex, but not mentioned behind all those robes

It’s cold and dark, you are worried about money? relationship? Quite natural. If you find that the blues don’t go away you may need to try lots of
exercise
sex
laughter
conversation
friendship
new horizons

not necessarily at the same time but it could help

and if that don’t work try a professional healer/counsellor etc.

Without those dark moments you wouldn’t be able to truly cherish the happy ones. What I like to do when I feel down is get on MSN and chat with my friends, or find new friends to chat with (it also helps improve my Chinese since most of the people I chat with are Taiwanese). Or you could make a cup of hot chocolate, get a good book, and lie under the warm covers and let whatever story you’re reading take you to another place for a while … a good book I’d recommend for anyone who’s doing some “searching” is “The Celestine Prophecy” by James Redfield (the sequels kinda suck though). It’s a good place to start from. :slight_smile:

P.S.- And as the above posters mentioned, sex isn’t bad either. I’ve got a cute Didi sitting in the living room studying for his final exams right now, but in a little while he’ll be coming to cuddle up with me in a nice warm bed … always a good feeling and a great way to lift the spirits (even if you have to get up early the next morning to go to work!)

[quote=“Maoman”]I have had periods like this. In my experience, there are two things that cure me completely:

  1. Physical exhaustion from manual labour or strenuous exercise (not the kind of exhaustion you get from overwork)
  2. service to others.[/quote]These two things are very important. Of course the pampering of ourselves is also necessary from time to time but in the long run what Maoman said is most effective – especially the second one. Not saying that we have to kind of be saints or something but that trying to practise kindness to others and be of service to them in whatever small way we find possible is really of immense benefit to ourselves.

If you mean the spiritual experience of abandonment by God, which John of the Cross wrote a poem about, that’s supposed to be a very advanced sort of experience. Talk with your priest or functional equivalent, and if it helps, they say that “God speaks through silence.”

If you’re talking about a feeling of dissatisfation with your life, that’s normal, inevitable, and often beneficial. The basic choices are to change your life, or learn to be satisfied with what you have. (Hmmm, wife or secretary…?)

If your dissatisfaction takes the form of wondering whether life has a meaning, or what that meaning is…well, that calls for some kind of spiritual search. Reach out to the noblest voices around you, I guess, and cultivate your relationships with those.

That’ll be ten Hail Mary’s and fifty push-ups.

one great (as in large) source of frustration may come from the TV. we tend to compare, even if we think we’re not. i was watching mission impossible last night and i know i could do that hanging from the ceiling thing by wires IF my back wasn’t shot and if i didnt have arthritus and if i didnt think the wires would rip my limbs off my body.

limit your intake to the things that inspire you and peace may return. read a pleasing book

or as someone said, do something selfless for others

Thomas Moore?

[quote=“Maoman”]I have had periods like this. In my experience, there are two things that cure me completely:

  1. Physical exhaustion from manual labour or strenuous exercise (not the kind of exhaustion you get from overwork)
  2. service to others.

There’s a third option that has helped me at times - religion.[/quote]
These are what help me:

  • Talking to someone about it. This is something that works wonders, yet is far too often summarily ruled out.

  • Exercise - particularly hiking. Unlike exercising in the gym, hiking provides variety, discovery, and solitude ideal for reflection.

  • Travel. Also provides discovery.

  • Getting together with friends.

  • Indulging in some “me” time - time away from those who have some control over your life (bosses, family, in-laws, SO’s)

Religion is something I personally avoid. I consider it akin to doing drugs to solve problems. YMMV.