Open your mind. Put aside old beliefs with me for a moment. Opportunity awaits for you here.

I was reading the book, The Power of the Mind to Heal, by Joan Borysenko, Ph.D and Miroslav Borysenko, Ph.D. A chapter, “Illness and Paradigm Shifts” (p.81-88) first caught my eye. I read on and I lit up.

Here it is…

“Before the 14th century, the reigning paradigm, or belief system, about health and illness (crisis) involved our relationship with God. If we led an exemplary life, we were supposed to be rewarded with good health (life).

Sadly, many of us are still stuck in the mindset of the medieval Church. If we could just do things right, some of us think, then God will reward us. The New Age twist…is that if we are good people, we will have good karma and we won’t get ‘sick’” …The cure for this kind of thinking lies…in a paradigm shift… Illness (crisis) brings about the need to create meaning from tragedy- to reinvent our lives on a higher, wiser, more loving level than before”(p.81-82).

What if you could shift your thinking to understand that your loss (your crisis), in your life is an opportunity for an amazing paradigm shift or a quick jump in your belief system to a higher level. In other words, what if this tragedy was viewed an opportunity for a passage to a more enlightened life.

“The 16th century Christian mystic, St. John of the Cross, coined the term dark night of the soul to describe the passage. The dark night, he believed, was an indispensable part of the spiritual journey, as it is precisely during these chaotic times when the greatest potential for breakthrough and healing exist. Essentially, at such times we are forced to shift our paradigm – to give up our old way of being and explore a new room in our life.” (p. 86)

“Each dark night and little death challenges us to re-evaluate our paradigm (beliefs). What a difference it would make if a person in the throes of a life crisis were called to initiaite- and then led to a rebirth. Part of the value of suffering is that it initiates or intensifies the search for what is most sacred… “ (p88)

When we get clarity about what is most sacred in our life, we can then make an incredible shift. We can begin to live differently, with clarity of our values and of our true purpose. We can begin to live wholeheartedly.

I challenge you today to ponder this idea. How does it apply to you? Are you willing to look at your “dark night” crisis as the beginning of your personal transformation? What will that mean? What is the next step for you if you make that paradigm shift?