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Does brain fog reduce the spiritual sense?

Discussion in 'Spirituality and ME/CFS' started by Hip, Jul 5, 2012.

  1. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Has anyone else noticed a slow, year-by-year decline in their spiritual awareness / consciousness since getting ME/CFS?

    I have found that year after year, my spiritual sense get less. Before getting ME/CFS, I tended to have a natural mystical / spiritual disposition, and very much identified and organized my self around this trait (I loved meditation, yoga, etc, as well as reading good spiritual literature; I had a sort of "seeker" personality).

    I know the brain fog of ME/CFS brings difficulties in concentration, memory, slow and confused thinking, but it seems that a decrease of spiritual awareness / consciousness also occurs in ME/CFS, at least in my case.

    This decrease in spiritual awareness upsets me more than the bad memory or confused thinking. It feels like I have lost that mystical connection to a higher power. This is odd really, because when you face an illness like ME/CFS, you'd hope that your spiritual energies would increase, in order to give comfort and help you deal with everything.


    During one period, when I was experiencing constant extremely high states of anxiety (extreme generalized anxiety disorder), I assumed that the loss of spiritual awareness was due to my mind being too intensely anxious and "wired", thereby preventing me from getting deep into the calm, meditative states of mind associated with spiritual consciousness awareness.

    However, since I have now managed to completely fix my anxiety, so that I am now calm again, I still find that my normal spiritual awareness has not really returned. So I don't think the anxiety caused my loss of spiritual sense.

    This lack of spiritual consciousness feels like I have become a bit of a zombie: a person with reduced "inner light", as if consciousness itself has become dimmer.

    I am just wondering if any of these descriptions resonate with others here?


    This dimming of spiritual awareness likely has its roots in the biochemical upheavals that ME/CFS brings to the brain, and I hope that perhaps the right medications might help return this spiritual faculty.

    Indeed, every time I take a supplement that, as a "side effect", seems to boost my spiritual feelings, I make a note of it. So far, I have found the following supplements noticeably increase spiritual awareness: creatine monohydrate 4 grams, frankincense essential oil 5 drops, L-theanine 200 mg, reishi mushroom (though reishi takes a week or so to work), holy basil herb 3 grams, cat's claw 2000 mg, colloidal gold 10 drops. Creatine monohydrate, for some unknown reason, provides by far the most potent support for the spiritual sense, and it always works every time I try it. Frankincense, L-theanine and cat's claw are also reliable boosters of spiritual consciousness, I have found. The others are a little less reliable; I have experienced some powerful spiritual effects from holy basil and colloidal gold, but the experience is not always repeated when you take them again.

    By the way, except for creatine monohydrate, all of these supplements are renowned for their spiritual properties, and have been used as meditative aids for centuries.

    If anyone else can suggest any unusual ways to bolster the spiritual sense, I'd love to hear about it.
     
    Asklipia, garcia, GracieJ and 2 others like this.
  2. leela

    leela Slow But Hopeful

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    Awareness by its nature can neither increase nor decrease. You can never "get out of" or "get into" Awareness.
    I too, due to ME, have had to naturally shift my perception of what was "spiritual" and "not spiritual" because the means and methods by which I used to connect with my innate Self became inaccessible to me.

    It is easy to mistake a "special state" that arises within Pure Awareness for Pure Awareness itself. I know I had that misperception going for a long time, and it caused me no small grief or confusion that I could not maintain those states perpetually or at will.

    Now it is much easier to realise that every single moment presents and contains the totality of Awareness itself, everything and everyone included, with nothing and no one left out. It is just up to me to relax and remember that that is the case, no matter what appearances are arising :)
     
    mango and Asklipia like this.
  3. madietodd

    madietodd Senior Member

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    My feeling of connection strengthens and weakens, and occasionally I lose it altogether. But this shifting has been a constant pattern throughout my 27 years with CFS. I've never been able to figure out any reason for the changes.

    I'm intrigued that you've found things that help bring that spiritual sense back. What I do in the down times is pretend. I know it will eventually come back, so I keep living my life with as much awareness as possible, I continue meditating, I try to follow my mantra to "do no harm." Then when the connection returns, I haven't created problems for myself that have to be undone. Well, I've always created problems, but less of them!

    I've used sandalwood and rose essential oils to good effect for deepening, and clary sage for brightening. When the world trade center was hit, I slathered on a shocking amount of rose, and came back to myself very quickly. [I had lived 7 blocks from the towers for 15 years, with a view of them out my south windows.] When my lack of spiritual feeling is caused by bumping out of my center, essential oils work best.

    Madie
     
  4. Sallysblooms

    Sallysblooms P.O.T.S. now SO MUCH BETTER!

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    I am better now with CFS but even when very, very ill for 20 years my belief got stronger and stronger. For a couple of years, I was too ill with POTS to go to church. Then my husband had to push me in my w.chair for a while, then slowly I was able to go without it. Thankfully I am able to go again, just walking now. That is the best day of the week.
     
    sianrecovery likes this.
  5. WillowJ

    WillowJ Senior Member

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    At times I've found it difficult to think, pray, and so forth, because of brain fog and a general haziness. Spiritual sense is not really any different from the others to me; my sense of, say hotness and coldness, can also be reduced at such times.

    I try to continue pressing on with everything, but also get necessary rest. Treating migraines and so forth has helped a lot.
     
    roxie60 likes this.
  6. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    I know what you are saying, Leela: that if you associate highly conscious moments to a specific activity or mental stance, then out of habit, you might eventually mistake that activity or stance for your conscious self.

    Though I am not sure about the idea that consciousness can never increase or decrease. Perhaps this might be case if you look at consciousness as an underlying transcendental feature of the cosmos (as most religions do); that consciousness might be invariable. However, in terms of the way that consciousness interweaves itself into the human mind and becomes our daily waking consciousness, this definitely can vary, and can even be controlled. Anesthetics, for example, seem to completely extinguish consciousness temporarily (nobody knows how anesthetics actually do this, incidentally).

    So even if we consider consciousness as transcendental, there may still be some biochemical nuts and bolts involved in the way it weaves into and operates within the brain. I'd like to find that loose biochemical bolt of consciousness, and tighten it up!
     
  7. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    I do a similar thing to pretending: I sometimes try to evoke a consciously aware state by focusing on my memories of past consciously aware experiences! Quite a bizarre approach, though: instead of being in the present moment, I am instead reliving my past memories of being in the present moment!

    I have not yet used sandalwood, but I understand it has good effects. Myrrh essential oil I have used a lot. Myrrh seems to boost the emotions mainly — but since I also have a lot anhedonia and emotional flatness as part of my ME/CFS symptoms, I find myrrh useful too. Plus myrrh works well for sinusitis. The Magi clearly knew what they were doing when they provided frankincense (for spirit) and myrrh (for emotion).
     
  8. LilacGardenia

    LilacGardenia

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    I've noticed mine growing as time goes on, but my spiritual growth and engagement seems to halt during especially foggy times. It's almost as if I'm drained of every bit of energy and can't muster any energy to even critical things like spiritual connection. I've recently started yoga--not sure if adding a physical dimension will be of help since I previously enriched it through prayer and reading biblical and inspirational text. While it can make it more difficult to engage spiritually, I find the struggles of dealing with things like brain fog helpful as they are kind of humbling in a sense (they bring me back to God knowing I can't do things alone.) and the whole dysautonomia sha-bang has made me more sympathetic and less judging of others.
     
  9. Hell...Hath...No...Fury..

    Hell...Hath...No...Fury.. Senior Member

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    I totally hear where you're coming from Hip, before ME I was very psychic, i saw spirits occassionally, I could hear people's thoughts occasionally when they were'nt even in the same room, as though they were physically speaking or shouting to me down an echoey tunnel (only people I spent a great deal of time with) I knew when my parents were coming home 5 minutes before they got home by hearing the motions of what they would normally do when they got home ie. keys in door, bag on table, or keys on table etc. only to hear them do it all again 5 minutes later for real when they did actually get home, I knew when people were lying because they would literally change colour (to me) and dark patches would appear on their aura. Needless to say there were a lot of people walking around with dark patches lol.
    But most importantly, i was very spiritually aware and always felt connected to the higher at all times. Now my brain fog prevents this and all of the above that I mentioned. My brain has shut down, there isn't sufficient energy to power all parts of my brain so only the essential parts are fired up, to survive in the physical. I get the occassional flash but its fleeting.
    My brain is numb and dead, my connections are wonky, not only to the spiritual but to everything. The wires sometimes line up correctly and i'm back online but then they lose connection again.
    The only thing that has increased instead of decreased, is out of body experiences since the ME. I go through spells where it becomes quite chronic, sometimes night after night, and i'm literally wasting all of my spiritual energy fighting as hard as I can to stop myself slipping out of my body. I don't have a problem with this but when I want to not when i'm trying to rest or get some sleep and its being forced on me.
    As soon as the waves start, running up and down my body, i know its starting, the waves get stronger, feet up to head, head down to feet etc. and the vibrations increase as the wave continues pulling harder and harder on my 'soul'. It may be only spiritual but it also feels like my physical blood is being sloshed up and down my body too like a wave in a bath tub back and forth.
    Eventually the pressure gets so strong it becomes unbearable when it reaches my head again, and everything from inside me is being forcefully pulled up to my head, it even feels like my teeth are going to be ripped out of my gums. By this point i'm now completely paralysed and it takes an immense amount of energy to jar myself out of it before I leave my body. So i'm kinda tied to the experience by this point whether i like it or not. The pressure then reaches such force that when it reaches my head, i'm pulled out of my head and i've left my body. The experiences once i've left and walking around my house etc. are rarely pleasant and sometimes downright terrifying including the people i see when in this state. I dont mind if i'm prepared and i did it on purpose but when it catches me unawares its just really frightening.
    I don't know why this particular skill has increased while everything else decreased but I really miss the whole package, probably just as much as I miss my brain I guess. I know its all still there but I feel like i've slightly shifted planes so i'm no longer aligned with it in order to experience it.
    I psychic once told me since getting ill that my soul has shifted out of alignment which might explain why i struggle so badly to keep hold of it! This was 8 years ago or so and i think it may still be this way, i feel like if i can figure out how to line it up correctly and fix it in place, the rest would naturally start occuring again and spiritual part of me would flow again.
     
  10. sianrecovery

    sianrecovery Senior Member

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    What an interesting thread. The brain fog does feel like a very dense, afflictive state - though I think true surrender to any state of being brings its own spiritual awareness.
    It makes sense to me that some of us may be people who are loosely connected to their bodies in the first place, and I think prolonged suffering attentuates that connection as well. The challenge for me is to remain lovingly aware of my body, rather than ignoring it and its discomforts or being angry with its 'failures'.
    The most spiritual sense I can make of my illness is being of service to others, in whatever form.
     
    Tristen likes this.
  11. Hell...Hath...No...Fury..

    Hell...Hath...No...Fury.. Senior Member

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    This reminded me about something someone also said to me quite a few years back too. He was a very gifted powerful medium and I worked with him on a paranormal team for many years. He said there was a thick, dense black fog surrounding my head that was impenetrable and he had absolutely no idea what it is. I wonder if he was seeing the brain fog for what it really looks like on the spiritual plane?
     
  12. Mary Poppins

    Mary Poppins PJ Princess

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    What a fascinating thread. Thank you all so much for your honesty. :)
     
    Wayne likes this.
  13. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    I am not sure what screwed up my spiritual sense more... brain fog or reading too many spiritually oriented New Age books? I think it's a tie. ;)

    I have found the antidote to both to be a healthy dose of Nature. Being by the ocean whenever I can, is especially helpful. It helps clear my brain of toxins, my mind of static buzz, and reminds me of my place as a speck in the universe.

    Also, willingness TO BE with whatever I am feeling, and to allow myself to express that creatively is always a saving grace. Creativity is a big part of my life. It keeps me in touch with the deeper channels of energy in my psyche, which are honest and raw. I let the expressions out as is, and edit later if I want to.
     
  14. madietodd

    madietodd Senior Member

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    Hell hath no fury..... Kidney 1 acupuncture point on the bottom of the feet is known for pulling people back into their bodies. [http://www.yinyanghouse.com/acupuncturepoints/kd1] You could try massaging this point regularly to keep drawing the energies down, and holding it on both feet when you feel yourself moving up and out.

    Madie
     
    sianrecovery likes this.
  15. Hell...Hath...No...Fury..

    Hell...Hath...No...Fury.. Senior Member

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    I totally agree with this, raw creativity is a great connector. I think part of the problem is that 'to be' with whatev er you're feeling, you have to be able to feel something in the first place and when severe brain fog us at work feelings are just as disconnected as everything else. Even to feel something negative is better than being a robot buried in fog. Hmmm maybe thats part of it... The brain fog for me anyway buries the human in me and replaces me with a drone
     
  16. Hell...Hath...No...Fury..

    Hell...Hath...No...Fury.. Senior Member

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    Hi Madie, thats great advice, but just wiggling a finger is impossible when trapped in it, if i could move enough to reach my feet then i'd already have fought my way out of it hehe. I could do it at other times but not during an episode :) thanks will deffo try it!
     
  17. madietodd

    madietodd Senior Member

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    I agree. I did this successfully once on a friend - she, of course, was in 'another place.' The idea is to try it when you feel the first inkling, and also to retrain your body to stay grounded with you firmly inside.
     
  18. Hell...Hath...No...Fury..

    Hell...Hath...No...Fury.. Senior Member

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    I've been trying this for many years and its fine and works when it happens from a wakeful state, or at least it used to, (not all of the time now, as the force doing the pulling has only increased in intensity to match my controlling it to the point where its now very violent so i've kinda made it worse by controlling it which has made the pulling force much more stronger to counteract me resisting it.
    Unfortunately it seems to have realised that its easier to catch me if it does it during the middle of sleep which never used to happen before, so by the time i realise its happening and its not a dream etc its already too late, and it takes an immense amount of falsley created rage to fight my way out of it :ninja:
     
  19. sianrecovery

    sianrecovery Senior Member

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    Donna Eden energy exercises from Energy Medicine have helped me stay grounded many times
     
  20. Misfit Toy

    Misfit Toy Senior Member

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    I feel an extreme loss of brain activity. For example, I used to fantasize all of the time. I would fantasize about what I wanted, how I wanted a home decorated, about a guy I was dating, about winning millions of dollars. I would lay down and just let my mind wander. I always felt like it separated me from everyone else because I would tell people how I fantasized about something and they would just look at me. Now, I am so mentally drained much of the time, that when I put my head on the pillow, I can fall asleep very quickly or not at all, but not because I am thinking. I miss the mental energy to dream. I have more physical energy than mental energy. I don't really understand this. I can get out almost everyday and do. But...I can't think, watch tv, or read like I used to and that creative fantasizing that I used to do which would relax me is gone.

    It scares me because I feel that this illness has really derailed my brain and like it won't come back. I don't think they will find a cure in my lifetime, if ever at this point. So, I wonder how much more brain power I will lose. I am still creative with my jewelry but only if I really put my thinking cap on. It's not like it used to be where I was almost manically creative with design.

    It's sad.
     

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