On Worship and Idealism

This has been a bit of a phenomena lately in my practice – people coming in with challenges that relate to worship, either ‘worshipping’ or being ‘worshipped’. Let me elaborate. It’s actually a very common theme. I’m sure there is something or someone you may be worshipping or have worshipped. A religious belief perhaps, a political figure, a star in the limelight, an idealistic movement of sorts and the leader who is in it. Or you’ve created your life around being worshipped 😉 – your lover, your kids, your employees, your students, your acolytes?

After all, to worship another person can have a deeply truthful spiritual meaning. The book “The Autobiography of a Yogi” describes a very sweet kind of ‘worship’, the relationship between a yogi and his master. The book describes so well that to raise up to new levels of awareness it’s a given to need assistance. I love the quote by Einstein that says “you can’t create a solution to a problem with the same kind of thinking that created it in the first place” – so yes, relating it back to this instance, it is great to have other ‘thinkers’ or ‘beings’ interfere or interact with your kind of thinking or being, hopefully triggering growth. That can happen sometimes in lovely ways, and other times through traumatic events as we don’t just grow with gentle encouragement unfortunately.

Even ‘energetically’ you can be interfered with, for example with a “Reiki Initiation” where the ‘master’ ignites the energy flow access so you can use it. Other ways are getting a healing, an adjustment, a massage and/or counselling and other therapies.

So, why then is there a problem? You may have guessed it already: “Ego” of course. But let us be a little more specific. What happens when you worship something? You’ll idealise it. Through idealisation it becomes harder to see ALL there is. Yin & Yang is always present in all things. There’ll always be a bright and a darker side to all people and things. There is no exclusion. As you worship something, it also remains unattainable. It stays far away from you. Worshipping your God, your master/teacher, your leader or even your boy or girlfriend may make you feel lesser than them. The person this is happening with may also feed this dynamic by becoming God-like e.g. “No need to explain my actions to you. See, nobody else is having a problem with this. It’s just you.” Or even better, they may start speaking in a selected, superior language, e.g. “spiritual” is a language many people choose these days to keep things rather vague and very open to interpretations, filled with riddles. They may talk of awakenings and love and light whilst acting like a “…” – you can fill in the blanks. They may even say that God himself is speaking through them, oh what authority! And you just have to suck it up and hopefully move on or be punished for being so ordinary ;). I hope you can hear me giggle through the lines as I’m writing this. This reminds me of a teacher whom I actually once worshipped (causing tremendously painful but amazing growth) and he once said: “People think they’re rocket scientists but are actually hamsters”. It’s a really funny statement and I believe an accurate one for the big egos out there- you are human, or a hamster, after all and will be until you die. But unfortunately it was his way of saying: you are all hamsters and I’m the only rocket scientist here.

So when you focus on the bright side exclusively two things will eventually occur. 1) You’ll be deeply disappointed once you realise there is another side to whatever it is you’ve fallen in love with. Or 2) You keep on defending the ideal you have and you’ll stay in denial.

Either one can be detrimental in your health. The first one is certainly a great growth trigger but if you stay in your disappointment for too long, chronically resigned to your disillusionment, it can wash away your own hopes and dreams not believing in the good anymore. You are still not okay with the ‘dark’ side you’ve discovered and you may even now generalise your object of previous worship to anything that reminds you of your disappointment. E.g. all men, all women, all leaders, all spiritual movements, all that reminds you of the authoritative figure who had once influenced your life so much. They’re all not to be trusted! 😉 This happens in relationships to your parents as well, in them not meeting your expectations of being worthy of worship or God-like (how dare they).

If you stay in denial, maintaining the belief that Maria really was a virgin (metaphorically speaking; this can relate to any belief you have) you unfortunately stay in your own powerlessness. You keep thinking and believing that all know better but you. You have not explored your own truth within, independent of what other people have told you to believe.

Propaganda is well and alive in all areas of life, whether it’s food, politics, religion, economy or other intellectual endeavours. Truth cannot be contained in a stagnant philosophy or school of thought. It needs to begin with a question. When we worship we stop questioning. Awareness stops evolving right there.

I once went to see a renown health practitioner who loved to be worshipped by his clients. No one treated him but less than a doctor God. He spoke cryptically and it was hard to understand, but he did say in the end I would have had to follow all his advice or I wouldn’t get better, as well as pay $500 on the spot without any time to think. I questioned him and was prompted to the door. He kicked me out. It’s a few years ago now and I’m still flabbergasted at his behaviour. But, so it is when you love being worshiped, you can’t accept anything else.

I hope you’ll hear through this that I am not talking of respect. Respect is mutual. Nor am I talking of unconditional love here. It is of course possible to feel and act out of unconditional love without losing yourself and your own worthiness.

I’m talking of a disconnect between the light and the dark and the preference of just one of the two. This can happen within yourself as well when you only love certain aspects of yourself but hate the others. It’s really freeing when you start loving your compassion as much as you love your anger. Or, that you can believe in having lovely qualities even if you just see the bad ones.

So, stop buying in to all this nonsense of the enlightened and enlightenment. Realise we are all human for as long as we’ll be around in physical form.

In the meantime – Love thy humanness!


Much love to you all as always, though not as frequent in blog form these days!


P.S.: As always, would love to hear your thoughts and ideas on this matter.