I’m always a bit shaky on the specifics of discernment.

See, I know that it is discerning, or determining, what is and is not real. But beyond that…which criteria to use, that is where it gets murky for me. See, I’m easily able to admit that discernment is one thing I’m not terribly good at. Perhaps because I have so little experience in sensing things…or experiencing things that require discernment–I’m pretty terrible at it.

About the only thing that I am able to work on discernment with does not stem from my spiritual beliefs. I have bipolar and OCD. Both of which contribute to how I see the world, how I react, and how I perceive what others do. I have to constantly check my reactions, how I feel and how I react. I’m constantly working to see if my reaction and thoughts are logical in context. It’s difficult at times, because I cannot really just rely on the fact that my mind is right, because it’s often now. I fail pretty often too, even with my ongoing treatment and care of my mental health.

So when it comes to spiritual matters, I’m pretty cautious as to what I believe. Discernment does not come easily there, when I have no real ability to even know if something is going on around me. Always a bit fun to go in blind with absolutely no clue what is happening. But, it’s something I’ve grown rather used to.

I wonder if perhaps I should apply my mental health discernment tools to spirituality. But it’s a bit strange to apply my usual methods of “hey, am I crazy today or not” to my religious beliefs. Somehow it almost seems disrespectful. I’m not sure why, it just makes me kind of wince to think that I have to look at my spirituality with the same scrutiny as to mental stability as I use on my own mind on a daily basis.

Not that it is, I know that logically. After all, there’s nothing wrong with a healthy bit of checking to make sure that what I am experiencing is real. However, I am sure i just have to get over my little squicky feelings about it. Really, they aren’t much different. And some people would say that my religious beliefs are “crazy”. So I suppose I just handle things the same…and adapt as needed considering my rather headblind self.

It’s just one of those little things about my spirituality that I have to handle.


2 thoughts on “Discernment

  1. I think that part of this can also come from your surroundings. The generalized unbelief in religious experience infuses itself within society. It is some how embarrassing for most people to acknowledge that it just might be possible — and especially so if the Gods involved are not Christian. That is when they pathologize. Bah Humbug! (I was a medical/psychiatric librarian for over 20 years.) (BTW, I do have Depression and Anxiety Disorder. My therapist and psychiatrist both know I am a polytheist and they have NOT pathologized me.) Bipolar and OCD should not have an effect on your discernment except in the ways that it presents (ie, hand-washing). Extreme delusions (visual/auditory/etc.) are a different story. I’ve never found the Gods to be extreme. Omens are very subtle. They will give you several messages in differing forms over a number of days.


    1. Oh definitely. For me, it’s more a matter, given how I get when swinging to hypo-manic, that I do not always react in a “rational” manner, because my mind is telling me one thing, like that I’m still just fine, when really I’m running myself ragged from lack of sleep.

      But for the rest, it’s good for me that my friends are all pretty open about it. Even if we believe different things, we are able to discuss what things we believe.


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