Our Spiritual Cleansings

Through the Dark Nights


Part I

The dark nights came into fruition in my life without my knowing what they were, or that these experiences even had a name until many years after I experienced them. I learned about the dark night of the soul and spirit through my new church when I joined the Ascended Master Teachings. In fact, I believe because I joined those teachings they precipitated the dark nights. This is not to say the dark nights are the result of doing something wrong, rather they are the result of doing something right. It means we are ready to allow God to purify our heart and soul. The dark night of the soul is a process that every spiritual seeker passes through at some stage on his path, as St. John of the Cross, a Christian ascetic who lived in the 16th century, argued that the person walking the spiritual path has to pass through a “Dark Night of the Soul” before reaching God.

Our souls need to evolve, which means being able to let go of the past, of the things we have thought were true, of the things that have hurt us, and make room for the new things God wills us to have. A dark night experience means making room for a better you.

This website is about exposing the fallacies we taken in as truths, false teachings we may learn through spiritual groups and activities, especially the New Age false teachings. I say they are false because they take us away from the Bible, Jesus and ultimately God. The opinions here are a lot my opinions, but I have tried to bring forth truths that have lasted the test of time. Some might disagree with them, finding greater happiness and spiritual growth in their life within their truths and New Age practices and beliefs. Ultimately, we cannot make a wise decision on what to believe without first growing in wisdom.

From childhood to adulthood we learn by mistakes and by the wisdom of others, first, hopefully, being from our parents. Later, when we enter school, we learn from teachers and our peers. All the stated sources of our learning are human beings like ourselves. They too were children who had to learn in a similar process as we learn before becoming adults. Consequently, the ones who we learn from may or may not have had true wisdom to pass on to us, yet I believe these are the people the Spirit has led us to learn from, with varying consequences.

Obviously not everything we take in as reality and incorporate into the self that we are is the highest truth. Some of what we learn and are programmed to believe in as reality is far from the truth. Yet, how are we to know which of what our parents, religious leaders or teachers taught us is a higher truth or God reality? We can't know outside of our inner attunement with God. Our parents are like God to us at first because we believe they created us, and because we believe they are the providers of all of our needs. As we grow in maturity we begin to realize that they aren't really the creators of our bodies and souls. While they provided the sperm and the egg, they cannot and do not control whether that egg and sperm come together. And while the mother provides the womb, she cannot consciously create the fetus, the heart, the brain, the blood and ultimately, the soul that inhabits the body. Thus we eventually learn that there is a creator outside of our parents, and for some of us this is God, who has the ability to create a magnificent and wondrous human body and endow each one with a soul and spirit.

While some of the wrong beliefs we have taken in as truth are taken from us during our dark night, also some of what we may hold dear to us because of its familiarity or it "feels good" is taken from us so we will not continue to do that which we do for the simple reason of habit and comfortability. We cannot proceed to attain inner peace unless we are willing to give ourselves to the absolute destruction of the beliefs that bind us. Yet what are those beliefs? We can't know what we learned and took in is a "truth" that binds us to the physical plane or a truth that helps to bring us closer to Spirit and God, without God helping us to see what we cannot see. A dark night will expose our self-centered ways (especially that which we can't see), beliefs, habits and value systems; to separate the things in our lives that do not lead us to God.

There are two dark nights, which we learn from St. John, that the soul experiences as necessary purgations on the path to Divine union: the first purgation is of the sensory or sensitive part of the soul, the second night is of the spiritual part. St. John of the Cross wrote down his experience in a poem called Noche obscura del alma (Dark Night of the Soul.) He is believed to have memorized these words during a period of time he was imprisoned and tortured by his fellow Carmelites who opposed his and Teresa of Avila's reforms. The reformed nuns and friars became known as the "Discalced" (barefoot) Carmelites. He escaped from prison nine months later and wrote down the his poems in the Ascent of Mount Carmel and The Dark Night.

St. John believes that God draws us to His Being by the utterance of His Word in eternity, creation and history. We have to look at what God created in our being: a human self and a divine self. What is our purpose? How can we both human and divine? Can we transcend the human part of ourselves to become divine while still on earth? Those questions can only be answered within you as you grow in Spirit, and the dark night will help this process.

Looking at these parts of our human self, God has given us our brain, with its biological functions, which processes information and words, and in the prefrontal cortex, with making decisions. And God has given us the divine self, that which we cannot see that we believe is comprised of the soul and consciousness. Somewhere in between is the ego, which in some is totally human and in some divine.

Whether this ego makes our choices or the soul depends on how much our human mind controls us with thoughts, some of which are our own and some not. Science has proven that damage to the prefrontal cortex can result in profound impairments in higher-level reasoning and decision making. Sometimes one area of the brain can compensate for a loss in another area, but if it cannot, for instance in the prefrontal area, we lose that ability to make sound decisions and choices. Science has also proven that our moods can also be affected by what goes on in our brain, which is affected also by what we eat and take in through chemical substances and other changes in the physical body from its environment.

Then there is consciousness, which in some circles is seen as akin to the soul. Since the brain stores information based on experiences and information processed and helps us process information, without it the soul cannot function while in the body. Yet near-death experiences has shown time and again that the soul/consciousness continues to function outside the human brain and body. For that to happen while still in the body one has the dream state and out of body experiences.

The point is that there are two main areas of interest while in physical embodiment. One can pursue a life focused on the physical as reality with its science, physics, the brain and human body or focus on the spiritual side of life with consciousness, soul and spirit. While they both overlap, some people keep them completely separate, such as atheists who do not believe in the spiritual side, or ascetics who focus purely on the spiritual side of life. This is where I believe the dark nights play an intermediary role.

We can try and understand the dark nights by reading many interpretations on what really St. John was expressing through his poems and commentaries on them, but we can also know by direct experiences, or learn from those who believe they have had a direct experience. Since I was led by the Holy Spirit that I have been through several dark night experiences I will share the circumstances that opened up the way to the dark night from my subjective viewpoint and what needed to be purged from my soul, along with St. John's description of the generality of what everyone experiences in their dark nights. Not everyone who claims to have had a dark night experience may have actually been through one, but thought that their trials and suffering, depression or suicide thoughts were signs that it was. No one can prove or disprove someone's experience was the result of a dark night. Thus I hope to add some understanding of how we can discern and prepare or even precipitate a dark night.

We do not need to fear this experience if we hold the perspective that the goal is to grow in greater unity with God and Reality. If we hold the perspective that pain and suffering is awful and we seek to avoid those experiences, then we may choose to not head towards the dark night experience. And I do believe we have a choice. Not that we are controlling God, but through our free will we can lead a more spiritual life or choose to lead a life focused almost entirely on believing the physical reality we see is all that matters. If our soul longs for God and more God in our life, and our human ego and mind wants only what we see and experience through our five senses, there may come a time where the soul wins and the dark nights can be precipitated to help free our body temples of the control by the human ego.

The "darkness" of this first dark night can simply mean the absence of any understanding or knowledge as to what's happening to us or where we are going. Thus our world is plunged into darkness and we are deprived of the light (the seeing, the feeling and the understanding) that we have previously had. In other words, we're unable to see through this kind of darkness with our own human mind, which is where God is leading us to see. He is teaching us to walk by faith and not by our normal means of the past using our senses and feelings. As we grow in faith during this dark night, the light of understanding will also emerge.

My First Dark Night

“This night...causes two kinds of darkness or purgation in spiritual persons according to the two parts of the soul, the sensory and the spiritual. Hence the one night or purgation will be sensory, by which the senses are purged and accommodated to the spirit; and the other night or purgation will be spiritual, by which the spirit is purged and denuded as well as accommodated and prepared for union with God through love.” St, John

In the dark night of the senses God wants to purge our souls from sin and self, so that we will be open and willing to follow Him at any cost. Our will controls everything in our lives and without it we would be lost by being under the control of others, but if our will puts our self first above God's will out of fear or selfishness it becomes a detriment to our life one with Christ. Thus, God wants us to have a will that is completely yielded and at one with His own, and this dark night will lead us to that end.

Since there are no teachings in the Bible on these dark nights this is a teaching on faith. If we have faith that God is in control of our lives, and have asked God in our daily prayers to help us to do His will, then we will have spiritual experiences that go outside of human/mind explanations. We enter the realm of Spirit and subjective interpretations based on faith. We know something happened and we feel the positive results. No one can take that away from us if we choose to maintain our faith. The more we share a miracle or spiritual experience, the more we may be negatively influenced by other minds who have no faith or carry pessimistic attitudes about life. So it is important to maintain your faith, but also be aware there will be opposition to your faith. The human egos of others can do quite a bit of harm by seeking to break down our faith and attempt to lead us down dark paths, as misery likes company. So keeping our private experiences to ourselves is often the best advice and one way to help us maintain our faith.

I have shared my spiritual experiences over the years because I have been divinely led to. I believe I may have even experienced some of these events for the purpose of learning by hands-on experience. In that way I can share my spiritual journey to help others on their path. So with that in mind I share what I believe is my first dark night during a period where I struggled with being in the dark and fearful in not being able to see any way out. I was forced to rely on faith because it seemed that was all I had.

It began when I joined the Ascended Master Teachings. Like many students who found the Teachings, I became an enthusiastic, zealous student. My personality changed from a quiet, spiritual devoted emissary of God, to an outward, active vocal chela of the "ascended masters", whom I believed were "ascended" saints who continue to work with mankind from the spiritual realm. I went from no daily prayer to hours of prayer—through the form of decrees, meditations and songs—and loving most every minute of my devotional work. I also changed a few things in my lifestyle that did not ingratiate me to my husband. Previously, I had made him center most in my life by trying to do everything to please him. I did so because I experienced what I felt was real love towards me from him. I did not feel loved by my family and was literally starved of loving, affectionate relationships except with a few childhood friends.

When I joined the Teachings love increased exponentially in my world. I already knew God loved me, and I never doubted that. Yet sometimes living in the world we feel we need more than God's love. We want to feel what it is like to be physically loved. Today I no longer have that need. I am absolutely fulfilled with experiencing God's love personally and have no need to rely on other human beings to feel loved. This is not to say that God cannot express His love through others towards me, but few have the capacity to express anywhere near to such a pure love that God personally gives us through our personal spiritual relationship with Him. This is why saints have expressed such adoration of Jesus, because they have had a personal relationship with Him.

"Wherefore the night which we have called that of sense may and should be called a kind of correction and restraint of the desire rather than purgation. The reason is that all the imperfections and disorders of the sensual part have their strength and root in the spirit..." (Hence total purgation cannot happen until the dark night of the spirit) St. John

So I felt loved by not only God, but so many spiritual beings who we called masters. I found new friends who also were loving. I wanted to multiply that love and I felt my spiritual life would emphasize that love through my decrees and spiritual practices, as well as through sacrificing things of this world. Fasting, surrendering alcohol, refined sugar and other harmful foods and activities were no problem for me. I gladly gave them up. This did not sit well with my husband. He was tolerant for awhile, but it gradually grew too much for him because my practices interfered with his choices. I learned I need to pray in secret when he was not around, but that did not help much as I was frequently attending services outside our home, and he was no longer the "king" in my world as I was obviously putting my path and choices above him and our previous choices together.

Arguments became more abundant. He seemed angry with me all the time. I could barely sleep for the darkness that stood between us causing me problems, as if a evil spirit was attacking me at night. I tried to encourage him to come to marriage counseling. He would not. I had to go alone. I left him temporarily to "shock" him into this is a serious problem we are going through. But that did not help. He invited his mother to come into our home and take care of him. I have previously explained some of these occurrences in what we went through in this article. So briefly I will share again some of the highlights. I left our marriage and returned several times over a year or two. We had three young boys and I wanted to keep our family together, and I loved my husband. Twice he arranged kidnapping of our children. The second time we had another child, our daughter who was nine months old. The second time was more traumatic than the first because he involved his parents. He had his mother's assistance to help find a lawyer and he had drawn up divorce papers, the first time he had taken action to end our marriage.

The year following our separation was a most painful, traumatic time, with a lot of experiences of fear, worry and doubt. I knew not what would happen next. The divorce papers were drawn up with the accusation that I belonged to a "cult" and he should have full custody of all four children. The thought of losing my children was more painful than words can describe. I even feared to be near him after I took back our daughter. One time I had a knife handy in case I had to defend myself if he tried to take our daughter away again. He had physically held me to the floor when his parents took the children from their beds and I believed he could be violent again. Later, as mentioned in my previous article, he had assaulted me, and another time almost assaulted me in front of my mother. At those times it always involved the children. His anger was so great that if he thought I would take any of the children away from him he could become aggressive.

Our van was totaled after another van broadsided me one day. It was not my fault, but the money received in compensation would not buy me another van equal to the one I had. I went through several used cars over the next couple of years. I became homeless with a child, and I suddenly felt what it was like for the homeless on the street. I had only a waitress job and I did not make enough to rent a place on my own. One day I was in the store and my purse was stolen. The United States Post Office returned it to me empty of any valuables. They found it in their mailbox.

It was like everything of value physically was taken away from, and most importantly my family. I continued to pray and decree, but I felt like God was not there. I knew He was, but why was I subjected to so much trauma? I had turned my life over to Him. I had multiplied my spiritual life and activities with all my heart. Here I was leading a more moral and better life, I thought, than I had before, yet why such destruction around me? The Teachings taught us that after we get on the path that our karma descends and we have to deal with it. So in some ways, the Teachings gave me peace with that thought. I did not blame God, feeling whatever happened I deserved it and it needed to happen to right the scales of karmic debt.

When the dark night started and ended is not clear because I had so much change during that period, and pain and trauma, that the years just blended together. It could have been an intense two-year period, with a gradual beginning and a gradual end as I finally began to normalize by putting a life back together one facet at a time. I had to make hefty decisions during that period and one area I know I completely surrendered to God was with my children. I prayed in front of a statue of Jesus one day while I was pregnant with our daughter whereby I surrendered my children, even the unborn child, to God. My husband and I were separated at that time and I knew that the children would become an issue between us. I also know that I did not own my children, that they belonged to God and so I asked God if it be His will, that He give me back only what children He wanted me to have in my life. Of course I would most likely have visitation rights no matter the final judgment by the courts, but I did not want just visitation rights. I wanted to raise my children full time. I had faith that through my prayer whatever God chose to do would be done and I would accept the outcome whether it be through the court, a judge or our decision agreed upon outside of the court.

Eventually, after hiring a new attorney to handle my case, our attorneys came up with the idea of splitting full custody by having each of us raise two children and have visits with the noncustodial children every other weekend. We both agreed. I had faith that God was leading us through our attorneys to make that decision because I had surrendered the children to Him. Although it was still very painful, as the child I lost raising was my firstborn, and for some reason the dearest child to my heart, yet I made the best of it. The years continued to have much trauma for me because my firstborn was not as intellectually strong as his brothers and his father, and he suffered because his father did not treat him respectfully, and I could do nothing to help him besides pray for him. After failing grade after grade he finally dropped out of school at 16. I believe he had some form of dyslexia that was never diagnosed. His father had somewhat of a photographic memory and was highly intelligent. His younger brothers were very smart as well. They often gave him the impression that he was less than them because he did not meet their criteria of what is intelligent. The youngest son that I raised was extremely wise, as well as having an excellent memory and while I rejoiced in his talents, good nature and spirit, it did not lessen the empathy I felt for my oldest son's learning difficulties and the way his family treated him.

What my eldest son did have was an extraordinary talent in spatial vision and thus with anything mechanical. Plus he also is extremely compassionate and loving. In other words, he is a right brain person vs. his brothers and father who are very left brain. The second oldest who was raised by his father picked up his father's anger towards me and hates me because he says I believe in a God and love that God more than him. This I knew would come of his being raised by his father, but no pleading with his father during our negotiations for the divorce would change his decision. He was not thinking of the child's best welfare and I knew without a doubt, that this son needed me more than his father at that young age in his life. At the same time God gave me a measure of peace in showing me intuitively what would happen to this son. I knew he could choose to be angry with me because he felt abandoned. And while my human side pleaded with his father to reconsider, my spiritual side knew it was fruitless as it was God's will he be raised by his father to thus allow him to make the freewill choice in whether he would follow in his father's footsteps to be angry with me and not believe in a God, consequently hating me for putting this "mythical God" before his needs as his father did, or his believing in God and loving his mother.

That was my dark night of the soul experience. In the end I came out a much happier and peaceful person, and at the beginning of my new life, with a smile on my face all the time. My mother even commented she had never seen me so happy. I felt so free from the restraints of my being that I had allowed during my marriage where I constantly thought of my husband's needs and accommodating him that I simply could not express my being.

I continued my spiritual practices and felt more of the Holy Spirit working in my world daily. My relationship with God only improved over the years. I had spiritual experiences and dreams that confirmed the Holy Spirit was active in my world and that I was loved by God not just by believing it, but by a personal experience I had where I was given the experience of my loving God and God loving me and we were one. My faith grew over the years going through this dark night, and I surrendered my life to God freely, desiring nothing else but to serve God's Will in whatever way God directed me. And so God did begin to direct me through my inner hearing. I began to realize that God provided everything for me, such as if I earned extra money to get to conferences it was God giving me the way to earn the extra money. I had greater peace and confidence, and my leadership ability came to the fore. I found myself doing tasks with ease that I had never done before. I even changed a radio in my new truck by myself that I had just bought, after purchasing it used for a very good price. I had that truck for years and it was like my faithful companion, never giving me an ounce of trouble. I seemed to have no needs as my life felt so fulfilled.

I eventually began to hear inner guidance on a regular basis, which first began in a few isolated incidences giving me profound guidance that was given to protect me and my children. When I began my training for my healing practice, and after making a prayer for the way I could listen to God's word and his angels better, I began a relationship with heaven that I treasured.


Part II continues with the dark night of the spirit.