Perchance to Sleep – Insomnia’s Thrall

Synchronicity! The way life dances with us, hinting at solutions, presenting the right book just when we need it. Life is a conversation between us, fumbling our way, and a wise teacher. Yesterday I wandered into the public library, just to pass time, my head tumbling with eternal questions: Who am I? What am I? Why?

We all have existential moments, often days! I had been tussling with my lousy sleep – why do I not want to go to sleep, why does my adrenalin rise near bedtime? Yet my mind isn’t overactive, I am not worried, just part of me is wary of sleep and has been all my life. It is as if my boundaries are too thin and I fear approaching the unknown.

So am I afraid of evil? I certainly don’t want to dwell in a tug of war between angel and devil. Yes, there’s always the white light bubble, but it never works for me. Perhaps I don’t feel deserving of it; more likely, it means acknowledging evil forces – and I still want so badly to believe that life is essentially good.

In the library, there was the book: The Map of Heaven by Eben Alexander, a neurosurgeon whose life was changed by a near death experience. The fact he was a doctor, and therefore inherently biased towards science rather than mysticism, made his account, though startling, credible.

One paragraph jumped out at me: he explained that “when the physical body and brain, which act as buffer for this world fall away, we risk falling into the lower realms of the spiritual world, which correspond directly to the lower portions of our psyche.” Bingo! I wasn’t dead, but on the edge of sleep, were my barriers thinned and was I vulnerable not to evil attacks, but to psychic crap?

I read somewhere, I think it was Jung, that in times of great emotion or shock, the veils between us and the collective unconscious thin. Like a calm sea, whipped up into a wave of emotion, leaving a thin scum of curling wave, transparent – through which the eternal is glimpsed.

As insomnia is such a major problem, are many of us super vulnerable at night? Those of us who rate as highly sensitive people? I scored high on Elaine Aron’s test. Body clock research shows that we are more easily vulnerable late evening. I can’t watch murder mysteries or the news at night and a book that renders me squeamish at 9.00 pm, I can return to in the morning without a qualm.

So, is our insomnia a combination of chronobiology, genetic sensitivity and perhaps increased psi abilities? If so, what to do? I tried grounding my energy last thing, bringing all stimulus and excitement close to my chest or rather down into my feet. Then I visualized an arc above me, thick like a protective ceiling. It certainly makes dropping off simpler and safer. So, is insomnia not a failure of character, as I had always imagined, but just being born with one skin too thin?

More info:

The Map of Heaven: How Science, Religion, and Ordinary People Are Proving the Afterlife by Eben Alexander and Ptolemy Tomkins.

The Highly Sensitive Person Test – link

The Brain from Top to Bottom – chronobiology – link


About UntraveledRoads

Fascinated by life, looking for answers to chronic pain and finding unexpected gifts. Interested in people, ideas, healing and humour. I am very happily married with three children and a kitten. As English born immigrants to Canada, we have family spread overseas, a daughter in South Africa and one in England. We also run a charity in South Africa to educate black, rural South African Women. Our first girl from a rural township has just graduated as an accountant from Johannesburg University and got a good job in a bank.
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One Response to Perchance to Sleep – Insomnia’s Thrall

  1. Pingback: The Elephant in the Bedroom | Pathway through Pain – Journey to Joy

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