The descent experience: metaphor for serious illness

(about protracted psych drug withdrawal etc) Why are we sick? There are many levels of reality at which we can answer that question – the political, the economic, the biochemical, the psychological. And then there’s the mystical. -- Since the beginning of time, humanity has described a particular kind of experience that many people have had, but many have not had. It involves terrible suffering. It lasts a very long time. During much of it, there is no help or relief that can be had. Eventually, it draws to an end, culminating in a return to life, often with additional gifts. It has been called The Descent Experience, and the oldest known recorded version of a descent myth was written by the Sumerians on clay tablets in the third millenium BCE. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

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