When something goes mainstream, everyone wants a piece of it, in this case-the spiritual community. Having gone through several spiritual communities I will say that not one single group was immune to the human condition of the ego. It’s not that the ego is all that bad, it is the imbalance of it that causes problems. I have seen it in every single group that I have been to, including the organized religions. The problem when power comes into play is that people get lost and become self-centered and greedy, I have been disheartened several times by so-called ‘leaders’ in these groups who turn out to be self-serving narcissists.
The only safe haven that I have ever found is within my own being, following my heart, and listening to my intuition because that is where God speaks to me. I have seen imposters in these communities simply mimicking what everyone is doing or saying just to get something out of someone or thing for selfish reasons, even using kindness as a means to an end. There are so many tricks and tools used to manipulate others it is no wonder why so many get stuck in these groups and don’t attain their spiritual liberation. Following others blindly is a recipe for disaster.
I know that it is a challenge for some to follow their own intuition and that that word in itself is as a foreign concept as physics is to a 1-year-old. It has taken me many years and a lot of painful traumatizing experiences to learn how to listen to my inner voice so I understand the feeling completely. Personally, I developed my intuition through practice, lots of it. I worked with a therapist to learn to listen to the cues of my body; I’ve gone on solo hikes to learn how to be self-reliant, I’ve sat in meditation to silence the chatter in my head, and so on. These are the things that have helped me, considering that each person is uniquely made these methods may or may not work for others. However, that shouldn’t discourage anyone from seeking a tool that will help empower themselves.
If I can offer any kind of advice it is this- love has no attachments, it is free. Anyone that truly wants what’s best for someone will not put strings attached to their services, they will allow people the freedom to choose out of their free will. If our almighty and all-powerful creator gave us the free will to make decisions in life then who are we to impose our beliefs on anyone else much less hand over our power to another person? Living life responsibly means taking ownership of the decisions we make and where we put our time and effort in as well as who we share our energy with. Anyone that claims that they have all the answers or that they are the only source of freedom or love is trying to manipulate people. Be especially wary of people who lie to get their point across, there is no need for lies in spiritual life, as the saying goes, ‘the truth shall set you free.’ It is, however, also true that no everyone is ready for the truth and they have a right to remain in their darkness. Everyone is on a path which only the creator understands, yet it is all perfectly orchestrated, all in due time.