Overload

Angst

Category: Events

Type

Involuntary

Introduction and description

Angst is quite a special emotion.  It is not depression, it is not grief, it is not hysteria or pain, it describes a special kind of inner turmoil that can completely befuddle the mind, which is one of the mechanisms by which spiritual experience works.

It is especially found in the young and sensitive, the artistic, and the  ‘right brainers’.  It also seems to be a feature of early homosexuality, simply because when an adolescent is attempting to come to terms with their sexuality, the discovery that they are homosexual in a society that is still in the dark ages when it comes to these things can cause great distress and anxiety.  Worse too if your parents also live in the dark ages and make stupid hurtful jokes about ‘willy wooftahs’ or ‘airy fairies’ or other such offensive terms. 

How do you tell a heterosexual parent with an obvious prejudice against anyone who is not as heterosexual as they are, that you are an airy fairy [or maybe even a willy wooftah]?  What do you do if their friends are as ignorant and prejudiced as they are and you know that your parents might tell you not to tell anyone.  If you don’t tell and hope they don’t notice, you then have to live with a lie.  That level of secrecy with people who are closest to you can be horrendous.  It can produce angst so severe, children sometimes consider suicide.

So angst is no joke and it can produce great unhappiness.  It can also produce some quite extraordinary spiritual experiences – visions of quite a profound nature in the very sensitive.

 

Angst might thus be defined as extreme anxiety or anguish, but somehow this does not quite capture all the inner turmoil that accompanies the state. The word angst was introduced into English from the Danish angst via Søren Kierkegaard. Edvard Munch was a person plagued by angst, many mystics are permanently in a state of angst [which is why they get so many experiences] . 

Who am I?  Why am I here?  Why am I like I am?  How do I handle what I am?  Why don’t I fit in?  Why aren’t I ‘normal’ [children often feel they aren’t normal, not realising that nobody is normal and it doesn’t much matter whether they are ‘normal’ or not.  Personally I think people should be as abnormal as possible, it makes for a much more interesting society!!].

It does not mean fearful.  Fear is [according to Wikipedia] “a negative anticipation regarding a concrete threat”  or a non concrete threat, or a threat that does not really exist too.  No, angst is not being frightened, it is a state of a deeply troubled mind in which the thoughts go round and round in your head until you can’t think anymore – and this is when your composer pops up and comforts you – if you let him/her.

And it does not mean stressed.  Stress is related to pressure from work and everyday life. This is not angst.

How it works

It may be helpful to have the Model of the Mind open and to have also read the generic description of How spiritual experience works.

Angst is an Emotion and emotion of extreme intensity.  Any form of reminder of the cause of this angst – a chance remark, a stupid joke, a sudden jog to the memory which then produces memories, and the subconscious feels the pain of a form of hurt. 

It is hurt – so it cries out.  It is the child in us that cries – the subconscious child.  And the intensity of emotion blots everything else out – absolutely everything – reason, logic, desires and objectives, obligations and opportunities.    Nothing is left except the vast sea of emotional PAIN PAIN PAIN so hard you think it will kill you.

And the Will is overwhelmed.  It can do nothing against such an onslaught, it has nothing in its armoury to help – no learnt function can match this barrage of anguish.

So it gives in and the Composer takes over.

Occasionally the Composer will provide a sense of inexplicable peace amid the feelings of pain. But it may try to provide comforting visions or hallucinations.  Many religious visions were of this type, we shall see this from the observations.

Observations

Some of my examples come from the world of the religious and poets, especially the so called ‘mystics’.  There are very very broad hints in many of the papers and books written by the mystics – particularly the Christian mystics, that quite a number were ‘very gay’ – totally homosexual, not just a bit on the AC/DC side but full on gay. 

The Catholic Church for most of its existence has condemned homosexuality.  This, for those of us who actually followed Jesus’ teaching when young, has always seemed a little odd.  Jesus loved everyone and the more outlandish or off the wall the better.  He loved prostitutes [Mary Magdalene was a prostitute], Samaritans [ the equivalents of  today’s ‘illegal immigrants’ in terms of their status in society], lowly fishermen, Roman soldiers – to Jesus everyone had worth and was worth his place on the earth. 

But as Nietszche once said ‘the only true Christian died on the cross’.

And then along came Paul.  Or Saul if you prefer, a man so nasty before his conversion, it required a bout of blindness and an epileptic fit to make him see sense.  Except he didn’t see sense.  He was, I suppose, ideal for spreading the word - egotistical, dogmatic, dogged, incapable of being diverted from his purpose – a fanatic. 

But he was not a nice man, mean minded, judgemental, prejudiced, racist, and sexist…………

Don’t believe me about the sexist bit?  Well he refused to let women preach or have any senior role in the Church, but here is a nice piece of introduced dogma that Jesus would have been utterly horrified about ………

1 Corinthians 11  - King James Version (KJV)

Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.
But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.
Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head.
But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.
For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.
For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.
For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man.
Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.

And he was a homosexual hater, not nice. And from him the Catholic church appears to have got all its prejudices. Here we have Paul at his most arrogant and nasty………

1 Corinthians 6

. … do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men
10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God…..
15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never!
16 Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.”…..
18 Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.

According to Paul, the vast majority of us will never get to heaven.  Rubbish of course, but the distress it must have caused all those ‘men who have sex with men’ must have been appalling - not to mention the prostitutes, the entire female sex, the sexually immoral [whatever that means], boozers, used car salesmen, politicians, estate agents, lawyers, ..... [sorry a joke - or maybe not]

So here we have a list of observations  - some from homosexuals  - who saw far more of heaven than Paul ever did.

Related observations