John Welwood: On Spiritual Bypassing & Human Relationship

“When we are spiritually bypassing, we often use the goal of awakening or liberation to rationalize what I call premature transcendence: trying to rise above the raw and messy side of our humanness before we have fully faced and made peace with it. And then we tend to use absolute truth to disparage or dismiss relative human needs, feelings, psychological problems, relational difficulties, and developmental deficits. I see this as an ‘occupational hazard’ of the spiritual path.” Spiritual bypassing is a term coined by pioneering author, clinical psychologist, and psychotherapist, John Welwood. According to him, “If there’s a large gap between our practice and our human side, we remain unripe. Our practice may ripen, but our life doesn’t. And there’s a certain point when that gap becomes very painful.” He shares more in this fascinating interview.