How Toxic Spirituality Taught You To Gaslight yourself
Toxic spirituality is mired in spiritual narcissism. As such, many of us experience symptoms of narcissistic abuse under the guise of spiritual teachings. By dismissing your own perceived negative thoughts and feelings about others, you are conditioned to turn off your internal guidance system which might otherwise alert you to predatory behavior.
You begin to engage in self-gaslighting, ignoring your own intuition, boundaries, morals, and values.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched people–healers even!–try to talk themselves out of being angry or disliking someone or speaking out against someone who is obviously and blatantly doing or promoting things that are antithetical to spirituality because they confuse it with being negative or self-righteous or just a projection of their own shadow.
It’s OKAY to not like someone who is doing a disservice to the collective.
And when you gaslight yourself into keeping quiet about those people, you enable them. When it comes to toxic behavior, you don’t have to stay in your lane. Expressing your anger is not being negative. Standing up for what IS right is not self-righteousness.
Certainly, ask yourself those questions when those kinds of feelings arise, but the answer is not always that you are just jealous/envious/triggered/self-righteous. Sometimes the answer is righteous, especially if you know yourself, and have done the work, know your values and what you stand for.
We have A LOT of problems in the spiritual community and A LOT of problematic people, but they continue to do harm and lead others astray because as a community, we’ve been brainwashed that to challenge someone or be challenged is being “negative,” and a lot of the people being challenged will gaslight the fuck out of you by accusing you of projection and being egoic.
Those people are the ones projecting. Reality is not as subjective as they would like you to believe. Not everything is a matter of perspective. Some perspectives are based on delusions. And some people are objectively in the wrong.
I’ve seen this a lot. Hell, I’ve been this person. But over the last three-four years, I’ve stopped telling myself that I need to like everybody. There’s been a multitude of experiences that have helped me realize that.
One was a girl who, upon seeing her photo in a group of friends for the first time, I immediately got a bad vibe. There was nothing in particular about her appearance that was off-putting. I just knew she was bad news.
Later, a mutual friend asked me to take her on as a client. Even though I had a really bad feeling about it, I told myself that “lightworkers should help everyone who wants it,” and kept ignoring and dismissing my visceral dislike of her, even going so far as to tell myself it must be a symptom if my own insecurity.
Fast-forward two weeks after she had taken what I told her in our session and posted it to her social media followers as though it was her own, and my visceral dislike was thoroughly validated. As if that wasn’t enough, she would later go on to lie and use me as a means of hurting said friend and sabotage our relationship, and hurt both of us deeply.
If I had listened to my gut instead of thinking I had to be nice to everybody, I *may* have avoided some pain.
Another example from several years earlier:
My ex father-in-law had gotten into politics and was hosting a meet and greet for an up and coming gubernatorial candidate named Eric Greitens. Lots of people I knew had been talking him up. He was a Rhodes Scholar, attended Oxford, was a former Navy Seal, humanitarian, book author, and founded a nonprofit for veterans.
After I actually met him in person, I had a very different impression.
In the car on the way home, I told my ex husband, “I don’t trust that guy as far as I can throw him. He’s fake. Everything about him is calculated.”
But he went on to win the race, and shortly thereafter, my intuition was once again validated:
A scandal broke—he’d handcuffed and blindfolded his married mistress during his campaign run and taken compromising photos of her. He was using revenge porn as a means of blackmail to keep quiet. His wife was pregnant at the time. Real classy guy.
In addition to running on a family values platform, he also beat the whole, “I’m not a career politician” thing to death on the campaign trail. Never mind the fact that he purchased ericgreitensforpresident.com seven years prior to running for governor.
As I said: calculated.
Listen to your intuition, boys and girls. Sometimes that strong disdain is there for a damn good reason and if you keep your mouth shut, those people go on to wreak havoc.
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