I am interested in the spiritual path, but have also observed many people who seem to use the path to disconnect from painful feeling and unresolved issues from childhood rhather than for authentic growth. How can we know what feelings and issues must be faced and whilch will "vanish in meditation" if we are persistent enough. Thank you for any clarity you can offer.
—Kim Simpkins, USA
You’ve asked a very good question and made a good observation also. Yes, people sometimes use the path or their meditation practices to deny or disconnect from pain or unresolved issues. But they will soon find out that simply denying or disconnecting does not work as an effective way to deal with unresolved issues.
What we are going for with deep meditation is transmutation rather than suppression or denial. This means not denying your past issues, but learning to work with them as energy patterns, stored within yourself, which can be released through meditation techniques, especially Kriya Yoga, very effectively.
Then again, sometimes people do need assistance from others, in the form of counseling, to overcome certain deep-seated issues which they are finding that meditation alone simply can’t take care of for them.
But I believe your main question is “… how can we know what feelings and issues must be faced and which will vanish through meditation practices?” Answer: You really cannot know this absolutely perfectly until you have developed perfect powers of discernment or discrimination. This is what the great Masters have done and what we will eventually do also.
In the meantime, we can use any technique that we feel is most appropriate at any given time. How to find out what is most appropriate? Pray a lot as a part of your meditative life. Develop your intuition as a way to be inwardly guided to find that perfect balance between looking within and looking outside to others for help. Pray and then trust that you will be guided, meditate as much as possible, and these answers surely will come at just the right time.
Here’s a book I would strongly suggest that you read this book to find out more ideas on exactly how to do this. See Intuition for Starters. Blessings!