A Narcissist’s Twist on Enlightenment

Narcissist's Twist on Enlightenment- Misha Almira

A Narcissist’s Twist on Enlightenment: The Downside of Cults

After living in a spiritual commune for over 10 years, it took a turn for the worst. Here is where I expose a Narcissist’s twist on enlightenment. 

No one thinks to themselves, “Of course, I would join a cult.”

If you ask most people, they would say, “That is ridiculous. Who would fall for that?!”

That’s what I thought too…even when I was in one.

Recently I watched 3 Documentaries that really affected me deeply.

Two of them were quite disturbing, but I was not exactly sure why, at first.

They were all about leaders of spiritual groups.

Each leader seemed to have a greater level of awareness that they shared with others in the hopes of bringing positive change.

However, the results were not all positive. This hit home with me because I lived in a spiritual commune for years.

The entire time I lived there, I felt like it was the most beautiful experience of my life even though there were some very questionable acts that took place.

I ignored these acts for a long time, as did the followers in these documentaries. 

I decided to take a deeper look.

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What exactly caused one leader to bring about positive expansion in others while another ended up causing their followers years of suffering?

What was the reason that we felt so compelled to stay when we knew that something was ‘not right?’

Why was I traumatized for years about the experience, just like some of these individuals?

At first glance, they all appeared to be enlightened but there was a strong sense of something twisted in two of them.

Many people even admitted feeling something just was off yet they stayed, just like me.

What would cause large numbers of people to follow leaders like these?

How Law of Attraction Works for the Narcissist

The leader in Holy Hell especially intrigued me. He seemed creepy from the start. Red flags went up immediately.

 His message seemed legit…

He seemed to be helping them with a great message encouraging them to practice healthy rituals of meditation, working out, eating healthy, serving others and love.

So, what was off? He obviously worshiped himself and made it about him.

Then, I started seeing a pattern. He wanted them to service him. He obviously worshiped himself and made it about him.

The confusing part to me was why they followed such an egocentric authority figure.

He even verbally abused them at times and later the truth came out about him sexually abusing many of the young men. Yet, they worshiped him anyway. Why?

Yet, they worshiped him anyway. Why?

He was getting exactly what he wanted. I decided to take look at Law of Attraction for just a minute.

If what you focus on becomes your reality, then this guy was focused on being a God.

What started as a seemingly obvious case of delusion of grandeur, turned into his own personal cult.

He wanted others to bow to him and make him the center of their world. He wanted them to pleasure him and serve him. He saw them as beneath him and they ate it up.

He saw them as beneath him and they ate it up.

As sad as it sounds, he literally attracted people that would do exactly that.

All the people that felt inferior on the inside flocked to him. He was a perfect out picturing of their inner concept of themselves.

They needed someone to worship and put above them so they attracted someone to serve 24/7!

They attracted someone that would remind them how insignificant they really were, while at the same time giving them conflicting messages of being love. 

He was the voice of their inner critic. He was committed to holding them in a small mindset.

He was an enlightened narcissist. Isn’t that a scary thought.

I once had a spiritual teacher that said if you are an asshole before enlightenment, after enlightenment you are just a bigger asshole.

I guess this is what we call an enlightened Ego, which is another scary thought. We won’t go into that right now though.

Why Narcissism & Enlightenment Don’t Mix

In Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, the leader wanted to get his message out to a lot of people. He had an agenda.

He wanted to create his own religion and felt he was the one to bring this to the world. It did help masses of people, but his message became twisted and diluted.

It changed from wanting to help others excel, to him creating an empire based on his ideas. Then, the organization became increasingly corrupt from the inside out.

Then, the organization became increasingly corrupt from the inside out.

The Difference Between Narcissistic & God-Like

In Awake: The Life of Yogananda, he was personally living the practice he shared with others.

He was continuing to do his personal work rather than focusing on fixing or helping others.

He was continuing to do his personal work rather than focusing on fixing or helping others.

Focusing on healing, helping, or fixing others is seeing them in a limited light. In having an agenda, we are getting in the way.

He was the example of love, surrender, service, and compassion. He was driven, but did not make it about him.

It was about sharing a message that was given to him.

In Holy Hell, the leader talked about the practice but his personal practice seemed to be more about self-worship and control.

In Going Clear, he took ownership of the ideas that originally flowed to him from a higher source and this ownership became his prison. It seemed to drive him mad.

It seemed to drive him mad.

He could not let go and the need for more power turned against him.

I can see these distinctions in my own personal journey. It is easy to talk more about the practice sometimes and forget to live it in each moment. This was such a great reminder.

How to Get Out of a Narcissistic Cult Mindset

This has shown the distinction between self-worship and true self-love.

On the outside, it can look like an individual really loves themselves and appears to have it all.

Who doesn’t want it all?

We naturally want to follow individuals that have it all together.

The problem is when we take our power and hand it over to them.

When we don’t love ourselves and are not filling ourselves, we can easily transfer this need to another.

For many years, I actually thought I loved myself, even though I was walking around with a feeling of “not enough” deep inside.

This caused me to need love from others.

Then, I would project on them what I needed them to do to love me the right way.

It was constant suffering.

We must first break free from this mindset in order to physically break free from a cult.

Otherwise, we will keep looking to the cult or teacher to sustain us. This is the trap.

True self-love comes from a place of forgiveness and acceptance of all aspects of ourselves.

Rather than run from the emptiness inside, we must go into it fully.

This sounds easy but takes work. It is not comfortable looking deep into the darkness within and we all have darkness.

This sounds easy but takes work. It is not comfortable looking deep into the darkness within and we all have darkness.

It is not comfortable looking deep into the darkness within and we all have darkness.

It is just a matter of what we are willing to acknowledge. It is there but some of us have buried it so deep, we can’t even see it.

It is by bringing these parts into the light of honoring. It takes a willingness to admit that we are not perfect or better than anyone we judge.

One of the hardest things I had to admit was that I have a Narcissist inside me.

I have been hurt by Narcissists and have judged them harshly for years.

The sad truth is that I have been one and have hurt others.

How do we shift from self-absorbed into self-love?

It is letting go of needing acceptance from others because we have fully embraced being imperfect.

Self-worship is constantly needing. We need others to pay attention to us, to feed us, to acknowledge us, to praise us, because we are not filling ourselves from the inside.

We have parts of us that are starving from the lack of awareness and deep acceptance.

When we are needing something from others, this is an indicator of our own awareness in these areas.

This is the reason, leaders that are self-absorbed end up causing suffering for others, they are constantly taking energy from them.

It is coming from a place of emptiness rather than fullness.

Yogananda actively practiced being full of energy from Source. He meditated and gathered his life force from within.

Then he shared that from a state of Being. He did not need anything from others.

In fact, he resisted going and sharing with others in the West.

He was content to stay in his personal practice. His quest was not for adoration or power.

He was already full.

He did not want to take power from people. He led them back to their own heart.

True Enlightenment Deflects Narcissism

I look at enlightenment as bringing light into the dark or becoming aware of what is hidden. 

Looking back, I can see that living in a spiritual commune was one of the most beautiful expansive experiences of my life. 

It was only the times I gave my power away, that I suffered.

This can be said another away as well.

I’d put my power into shadow which caused me to project it on others, especially my teacher.

I chose to put someone else higher than me.

I chose to be a victim to my teacher by acknowledging my own power that lived inside me.

I let the group and my teacher make decisions for me, instead of honoring my own intuition and loving myself from within.

Our only job is to love ourselves. 

When we can accept and forgive all of our shortcomings, perceived faults, and aspects we are afraid of, we will start to truly open to love.

Then, from that place we have something to share with others.

May we all take this into our everyday lives.

Thank you for reading. I hope this has been helpful.

Please visit my recommended PRODUCTS PAGE for more information on how to make a difference once and for all.

Misha Almira

P.S. I would love your feedback. Please comment below. 

Also, if you have experienced feeling stuck in the past or problems moving forward in a bigger way, visit Work With Misha

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