Some science behind the scenes
A term used often by psychoanalysts. When one has travelled a little way along the spiritual path, and the amount of spiritual energy or spiritual experience exceeds the person's ability to handle it, the energy can be misdirected towards the ego and not towards subjugation of the ego.
Roberto Assagioli - Psychosynthesis
The in-flowing spiritual energies may have the unfortunate effect of feeding and inflating the personal ego… instances of such confusion … are not uncommon among people dazzled by contact with truths which are too powerful for their mental capacities to grasp and assimilate
Simply put, this is a disaster, because it is in completely the opposite direction from that one wishes to go. It results in delusions of grandeur or paranoia and a great number of very unfortunate mental problems. Here are the seeds for the people who think they are Napoleon or Jesus and think they can save the world or conquer the world.
The simplest solution, of course, is to stop whatever you were doing to get in this state, but some people are unable to make the link and find the cause, if it happened accidentally. Too much and too fervid meditation, pharmaceuticals prescribed by doctors, too much use of controlled breathing exercises, can all have this effect. Drugs in general can have a disastrous effect.
In Case of Spiritual Emergency – Catherine Lucas
In ego inflation, the ego appropriates to itself the powerful spiritual energy that is coming through. …. There is a confusion of the higher spiritual self and the egoic [sic] personal self, the individual has a sense of greatness and expansion, and feels as if they are part of divine nature. It is not that we are Jesus, for example, but that we are experiencing the energy of the ‘Christ Consciousness'. The ego and the mind are not used to such extraordinary events and get confused.
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