Flower Woman Asleep (TrisMarie, Morguefile)
Soft Pink Rose
| Death & Sleep
die daily’, wrote St Paul (1 Corinthians 15:31).
Contrary to popular belief, I do not believe
Paul is talking about dying to matters of the flesh, nor is he talking
persecution and physical death daily.
Rather he is talking about dying to the dominance
of the waking consciousness, so that we may embrace our spiritual
sleep can teach us how to die and connect us to our deeper self.
The 4,000 word essay Falling
for Sleep by
Rubin Naiman also makes this clear and more. The following is
basically remixed from this essay (into <500 words):-
mechanisation and medicalisation of sleep has happened since the
Industrial Revolution, when productivity – and thus
wakefulness - became so
important. Sleep was neglected and encroached upon, demoted to merely a
biomedical process. Attempts were even made to eliminate sleep, and
lights and computer gadgets are still threatening this.
are caught in wakism, a subtle but
to ordinary waking consciousness that limits our understanding and
of sleep. Hyperarousal is an
inevitable consequence of our wakism; it refers to a turbocharged pace
that is not modulated by adequate rest. Hyperarousal is rooted in an
disregard for natural rhythms, and this has serious side
and insomnia both encourage drug and substance dependence.
Caffeine, energy drinks and stimulant drugs help stoke perpetual
alcohol, marijuana and sedating medications provide temporary,
is now only a physiological process that is tweaked with tips and
sleeping pills. However, sleeping pills produce a kind
slumber. They do not heal insomnia; they suppress its symptoms. Ongoing
reliance on sleeping pills undermines our sleep self-efficacy, or trust
innate ability to sleep. They also result in dependence or addiction,
significantly increase the risk of serious illness
has become impersonal and something outside our awareness, only
assessed in metrics (e.g. sleep stages, sleep length). Contemporary
views presume that there’s nothing in the world of sleep
investigating. However, medicalisation obscures sleep’s true
the personal, transcendent and romantic dimensions of sleep.
are in dire need of restoring our sense of sleep’s mythic
– of reimagining our personal experience of sleep. Mythic
perspectives suggest that there is something
in the deep waters of sleep worth accessing, and invite us to
investigate it. From a mythic perspective, deep sleep is a state of
serenity. But we commonly fail to notice it due to our pervasive
natural sleep threatens our wake-centric self. The Dalai Lama
the psychospiritual experience of falling asleep is identical to that
Our familiar, waking self dies in sleep. Sleep is a return to
consciousness, our deepest Self.
loss, then, is not simply a medical problem; it is also a critical
challenge. Our epic struggles with accessing deep sleep are struggles
accessing deeper aspects of ourselves. As wakists, we presume that who
is limited to our waking-world identity. Essential parts of who we are,
however, are obscured by the glare of waking life. And these become
visible at night – in the deep waters of sleep and
is more an art than a science. It is about humility and vulnerability.
not work to get it; rather we stop working to receive it - as a gift,
an act of
need to fall in love with sleep (again).
teacher Omraam Mikhaёl
Aïvanhov tells us:
night, while you are asleep, the conditions
are right for you to learn in the invisible world. And even if you are
with no clear memory of what you learned, you can sometimes feel the
morning that new elements have been added to the way you understand
Each day is a new life. Each morning you are born into the world, and
evening you leave the world. It is important that you live this last
your day well, for it sets the conditions for the following day.
day has been like, as you go to sleep try to dispel everything that
obscure your consciousness. Call on the highest thoughts and feelings
accompany you on the sacred journey you are about to make into the
You will then enter the new day with feelings of light, peace and joy."
- "At night
while they are
asleep, true disciples leave their body and join their Master, with
continue to learn. They read the most secret books in the libraries of
universe; they participate in magnificent ceremonies. And even though
brain is not yet capable of remembering such events, sufficient traces
remain to leave a feeling of such calm and sweetness in their heart
waking they say, ‘Where was I last night? What I saw was so
beautiful!’ We must
understand how sacred our sleep can be when we fall asleep with the
leave our bodies and attend these spiritual schools, for it is there
receive true Initiation."
"Every human being streams at
night into the loving nowhere." (Rumi)