Spiritual Bypassing

Why you stay in harmful situations ~The dangers of fake positivity

republish * originally published 25th March 2019 (wear him down to submission~under archetypes)


This line “Wear him down to submission”  I just heard on a cartoon my son is watching. In response to a fighting technique.

You would be surprised how much this is playing out in our world in more ways than the obvious submission and surrender in a battle.

If you are a human or a living breathing feeling be-ing you can be easily worn down into submission.

Guess what? It’s not a fault ! Your body does this to survive. You are playing dead.

The nervous system effectively shuts down all signs of social communication when we play dead it’s the “freeze” aspect.

This is where people are at when they feel depressed, blank, expressionless, numb, feel nothing. The blank stares. This is when the stress has been too much and the body did something  it’s supposed to do. When it feels it can’t flee and can’t fight. It freezes-plays dead.

The thing I want people to know as it has helped me so much is, it’s not a fault. You have a perfectly working nervous system.

Because as far as I see most people in freeze or even ill extend it to fight or flight are still in situations that are highly stressful.

As soon as I am free of high stress, confusing, bypassing and out-of-body dissociating situations.  I recover somewhat.

But the hard part of a spiritual journey is, it happens in the feel good, yoga world too.  And this is largely what im going to write about in this post.

If you seek a quest into a mediation practice, you join a yoga practice.Or you follow on social media people who are feel good and are largely on a quest for “enlightenment” you have the same dangers of submission, largely because of the dissociate factors.  What I mean by this is, disassociating is something we do when our nervous system is shutting down the fight and flight, its sort of like a rest. It’s the route of the relaxed state we call parasympathetic but it’s a pathway that isn’t exactly the same as resting. The yoga teacher might talk about this “we are going to active your parasympathetic nervous system now ” This is the side of the parasympathetic nervous system which slows heart rate, the rest and digest. The nervous system response when you are not stressed, you feel good, you have no signs of anxiety etc.   You can deny this yourself  when you ignore a response or situation that you perceive threatening. Or are subject to continual blame and shame. When you keep exposing yourself to a stress response over and over.

This is where you submit. 

For eg you are stressed, you go to a yoga class and you are taken out of your body, you go on a journey and you feel temporary ok with this, this seams ok. But you do this continually. You scroll on social media, and see. ” it’s your fault your life is this way, you are the one who manifested this or You create your reality ” So you attempt to think yourself out of your stress. You attempt to reframe your thoughts and believe its just my beliefs that need to change. Ignoring a situation and going “within” for the answers.

It’s my belief that over time, you are avoiding a situation and bypassing the danger or real unhappiness. People do this with drugs that take them outside the realm of consciousness, and also with transcendental mediation, and many other forms of bypassing behaviour. The dangers in a feel good bypassing environment is shame and blame.

Victim blame and shame is extremely prevalent in new age spiritual communities. Shaming someone for not finding gratitude or seeing the positive in a situation. This is done so extremely subtle. I’ll give you example phrases below and you can see if you can pick it. Why its important to not shame yourself is; because shame is an extremely strong debilitating emotion that does effectively shut you down. It’s linked to a debilitating nervous system response I talk about, the freeze response.  And if you deny a situation and attempt to think your way out of something and you stay in a stressful situation longer.  You are at risk of disassociating and freezing.


Shame inducing, dissociate talk.

  • You are not your body
  • Everything happens for a reason
  • You are not your mind
  • You are not human, you are spirit/soul
  • You create your reality
  • Reality isn’t real, it is an illusion
  • You are the only one responsible for your life
  • You are a mirror of your outside world
  • When you forgive, you will heal
  • You are not your story
  • Karmic choice-you choose this its your karma
  • Vibrate higher and you will be free of your pain
  • You are not high vibe that’s why you feel anything but happiness bypass blah  blah
  • You created this as you didn’t love yourself or other victim blaming lines

These are dangerous phrases and I am going to admit right now I lived these phrases and repeated them over and over. I taught this in my yoga classes as I was taught some of these phrases. I taught this to people I coached. Because I didn’t know any better.  I could see my behaviour and the way I looked at the human body. It was one big bypass and escape to get out of here. Yet camouflaged into a spiritual practice.

The human body bypass and the route out of the body, with high vibes and green juice. To ascend out of here as if the body is so bad we must escape it asap.

I didn’t realise how damaging it was to go off into a spiritual meditation that took me out of my body and guide others out too. How can someone who is disassociated from the human experience up there guide others to a stable grounded place. They simply can’t. It’s dangerous and I don’t believe in it one little bit. And warn heavily against anything of this sort.

Jeff brown Spiritual bypass


The damage when in a situation and we are told things like, be with love and forgiveness, without the embodied wisdom of the need for moving away from a situation or releasing the energy through screaming cries etc. (fight or flight) We continue to put our body through a situation that can be harmful and abusive.  If we are looking at it from a self inducing shame, blame game where we attempt to fix it by looking within. This self reflective behaviour and attempt to think our way through it can induce shame, and blame. And thus the repose of being in high stress or even dangerous situation over a long period of time. Is to give up. It’s known as the freeze response. If we are told and taught,  Change us first and the outer world will change.   But what if it doesn’t? What if we do all the work and the person or situation that is stressful or abusive doesn’t change? We submit, we stay we say in unhealthy situations longer, in the hope we can change it or us. We freeze.

This also creates unhealthy body awareness.  You begin to not trust your body deny your responses to situation.  You may put up with certain behaviour that your body told you was unsafe.

This is not mind-body-soul work. It’s the work of dangerous disassociating, victim blaming and nervous system corruption. 

By simply becoming angry, non-forgiving and non loving and unspritual, or whatever humanness you feel, and allowing your in-body experience to be as it is. We can prevent the bypass dissociating. And can protect ourselves from the dangers of others attempting to lure us into their world. Or forcing us to put up with their behaviour that we eventually submit to when it becomes too much.

This is where the spiritual and psychological abuse happens. This is where you can be manipulated and convinced you just were not spiritual or loving enough to accept a situation.

I spent the last 10 years in countless situations my body told me was not right. Yet the spiritual bypass was echoed and the quest for becoming more spiritual pushed me deeper into situations and my body had to give up. My body shut down. The more I tried to float away, the further away I was to my body, and when I came back I was actually a raging, mess.  Because I didn’t listen I floated away into nirvana land of dissociating.. OUT OF BODY.

And ill tell you one thing, the people who echo to me now.”Everything happens for a reason” and I’m “high vibes only” im very cautious of.

So the mechanisms for danger are there for us to listen. The body knows what feels right and wrong. I’ll save dissociation for severe life threatening situations. When we play dead. Not for a spiritual journey to one consciousness.

The human being can not make rational decisions in an altered state that is not in-BODY. The integration is not there to be coherent.

The more we ignore our innate body responses the further away we go from our body and become in effect disassociated. This is an activation of the nervous system. When you have given up to submit to a way, know your body is protecting you.

If you have been abused, or in a situation when you didn’t fight and you feel like you blame yourself. Know this.

It’s not your fault you didn’t run or walk away.  Your body protected you by freezing.  You didn’t have a conscious choice it’s an unconscious body response.


In summary

  • Anger has a purpose
  • Not every situation has to have a positive outlook
  • You are not unspiritual if you don’t forgive or love in every situation.
  • If something doesn’t feel right, you are entitled to move away, speak up.
  • You don’t have to be in a situation you don’t feel comfortable in. The more you accept this as a human trait and warning sign  the more you trust yourself.
  • Its not your fault if you didn’t leave and gave up your body was protecting you.
  • The more you trust yourself. The more you create a safe environment and then you can leave, you can walk away.


Much love




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