Spontaneous Spiritual Awakenings | Jessica Corneille
1 June.7:30 pm-9:00 pm
Spontaneous Spiritual Awakenings
Tuesday 1st June 2021. 7.30pm until 9.00pm. £5 online via ZOOM.
Spontaneous Spiritual Awakenings: An Experiential Journey Towards Radical Social Change
Spontaneous spiritual awakenings (SSAs) are characterised by a sudden sense of direct contact, union or communion with the universe, ‘God’ or the divine. In this ‘enlightened’ or ‘nondual’ state, the experiencer transcends their ordinary sense of self, ’knowing’ or ‘re-membering’ their essence as part of a greater truth or reality, in perceived oneness. The scientific community is only just beginning to acknowledge the healing potential of mystical experiences mediated by psychedelic drugs and spiritual contemplative practices, yet awakening experiences of a sudden, spontaneous nature have scarcely been explored within the scientific framework despite a vast amount of anecdotal evidence pointing to SSAs long-term impacts on perception, cognition, behaviour and wellbeing. To date, mainstream psychology has tended to pathologise awakening experiences of a spontaneous nature and the topic is still largely misunderstood and misinterpreted in the West – compounding to its overall stigma. These issues, as well as the spontaneous nature of these experiences and a general lack of religious or spiritual community to turn to, can make it challenging for SSA experiencers to successfully integrate their experiences and ensure the best possible outcome. However, research suggests that if adequately supported, these experiences can have overwhelmingly positive long-term effects. In this talk, I will touch on my own SSA experience, including my ‘spiritual coming out’ and how it has led me on a mission to try and ‘de-mystify’ mystical experience in mainstream psychology. I will then discuss my research, which seeks to better understand the phenomenological variances of these experiences (including what is known as kundalini awakening), their impact on wellbeing and how they compare to other measured altered states of consciousness. To conclude, I will discuss my view on how these experiences (and their research) can help facilitate humanity’s progress towards a more compassionate, understanding and united world.
Please join us at 7.30PM on Tuesday the 1st of June via ZOOM. Purchase a ticket below via Eventbrite. Save money by purchasing a Spring Season Pass here and get access to our full Spring Season programme.
About Jessica Corneille
Jessica Corneille is a research psychologist specialised in spontaneous spiritual awakening experiences. She graduated with a Masters Degree in Psychology (Distinction) from the University of Greenwich, where she focussed her studies on ‘Exceptional Human Experiences’, under the supervision of Dr. David Luke. With a passion to bridge the worlds of science and spirituality, her mission is to challenge the default pathologisation of awakening experiences by helping to inform and encourage mainstream psychology to look beyond the current designated spectrum of ‘normality’, to encompass the transpersonal as something that is intrinsic to the human experience. Jessica also works for the Scientific and Medical Network, is a collaborator of the Emergent Phenomenology Research Consortium, a certified Kundalini Yoga teacher and Extinction Rebellion activist. In her free time she enjoys practicing embodied movement and ritual, reading, spending time in nature, slacklining, playing her hand pan and mixing vinyl.
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