6 Stages Of Spiritual Awakening

Learn about the 6 different stages of spiritual awakening. What they mean, how you recognise them and how to cope with them.

Spiritual Awakening Like A Butterfly Emerging From a Chrysalis

Starting a Spiritual Journey Beginning An Awakening

About 19 min reading time

Spiritual Awakening Stages

In this post we examine the 6 spiritual awakening stages as we see it. Different people disagree on how many stages of spiritual awakening there are. We split the spiritual awakening process into 6 – noting that each person is individual and may not progress linearly through the spiritual awakening process. We’d also like to point out that although we list the final stages of spiritual awakening as if it’s a finite process which comes to an end, in reality, pretty much everyone will find they are in fact in the spiritual awakening process for their entire lifetime.

Anyway, read on for more information about how we see the 6 stages of spiritual awakening.

What Is A Spiritual Awakening?

A spiritual awakening is where a person who previously had little to no understanding or experience of a spiritual side to themselves starts to realise and feel more connected to the universe. It can manifest itself as feeling more in tune with things going on around them, or sometimes unexplainedly having the answers to questions they’ve been pondering on for some time but couldn’t know without external help.

Reasons For A Spiritual Awakening

Trauma Can Lead to a Spiritual Awakening

Many times a spiritual awakening will start when your life goes through some form of upheaval. This can be due to a person that’s close to you dying, or a relationship ending. It usually involves a large amount of emotional energy.

You cry out in anguish for someone, something to help you. And your awakening begins. As you do, your ego begins to lose itself as you realise your ego cannot control anything at all in your life.

If you’re experiencing this sort of upheaval as a result of the current recent Covid-19 pandemic, you may find that Mindfulness and Meditation can help relieve this – and it could be a good first step on the way to your spiritual awakening too.

Spontaneous Spiritual Awakenings Can Happen

Not everyone requires a traumatic event. Sometimes a spiritual awakening just happens naturally. Perhaps it’s been in the back of your mind for some time – through the friends you keep or things you’ve come across online or in your general life. If you’re thinking about awakening spiritually then there’s a good chance you’re already at stage 1 of the process. This may be because you’re an old soul – or perhaps this is your first awakening.

For these people there’s no precipitating event. No big upheaval (though there might be once you start to awaken!) Sometimes just questioning ‘Is there more to life than this?’ and pondering the answer can be enough to awaken you.

Sometimes it just happens out of the blue with no previous questions or expectations. Lucky you if it happens this way!

If you’re one of the spontaneous spiritual awakening souls, then we’ve put together a post on how to start your spiritual awakening which gives you some tips and techniques for how to practice it.

How Many Stages Of Spiritual Awakening Are There?

The process of spiritual awakening is more of a spectrum than a specific set of stages, but broadly speaking we split the process into 6 stages of awakening in order to help you gauge whereabouts in the spectrum you might be. The stages will often overlap and some days you’ll be in stage 3 and the following you might be back in stage 2. There is nothing wrong with this, it’s normal and it’s not a sign of going backwards.

We believe the stages of spiritual awakening are;

  1. The Wake Up – you’re beginning to awaken from your 3D meat world slumber
  2. Bliss – you feel positive about almost everything with this new found knowledge that there is more to life than you first thought.
  3. Darkness – you realise that although there’s far more to the world than you thought, you need to cleanse a lot of old baggage in order to fully appreciate and access it.
  4. Emptiness – everything you thought about stage 2 seems to have left you. You feel alone. You wonder if Stage 3 was even worth it
  5. Grounding – the connection to the universe begins to re-awaken again, the Bliss of stage 2 starts to return but it’s grounded this time. Rooted in your new wisdom and aware that to remain connected to both spirit and earth you must keep your feet on the ground.
  6. Finale! – when you can use your new awakening for the benefit of anyone and everyone around you as you not only know we are all one, but feel it deep down too. You now know your soul purpose and can use it for everyone’s benefit.

The 6 Stages Of Spiritual Awakening

Before we get into the actual 6 stages of spiritual awakening, it’s worth remembering that everyone progresses at a different rate. There is no way to tell or predict how long each stage will last.

Equally, since everyone is different, some people find that the stages overlap. They’re not necessarily linear – at least as we understand it with our limited viewpoint of 3 dimensions plus time.

And finally – not everyone experiences every stage and not every awakening happens with these six stages flowing in the order they’re listed. But this is how we believe the spiritual awakening process occurs for most people.

Isn’t life great? If everyone was the same it would be a rather boring place wouldn’t it?

Stage 1: The Wake Up

We’ve touched on this above. Stage 1 of the process is where we actually notice that something different is happening to us, and around us. We begin to notice synchronicities for example. We begin to suspect there is more to life than meets the eye. We begin to feel connected to each other and the universe in a way that we can’t really explain.

We liken it to waking up because until this point it’s as if your soul has been asleep on duty. You’ve wandered around your life not knowing, or questioning whether there is more than this. But now you’re starting to notice things and feel things and as such it’s like waking up.

Stage 2: Bliss

Once we start to notice the awakening and accept it, we usually feel a sense of bliss come along. This is where we’ve woken up and we now start to feel properly alive.

We start to feel and realise that we’re all connected to everything and everyone around us. We start to feel connected to the universe itself. We start to feel powerful.

We start to feel on a natural high.

We begin to feel excited about life because we start to realise that there actually is more to life than we realised.

This is also the stage where we start to feel guided through our lives. As if there is some higher power that can help show us the way. And can help us through the tough times. Our hearts are opening to the emotions of compassion and connection.

We want to stay in this stage forever because it’s lovely. It’s uplifting. We feel so much better about ourselves and our lives. Explanations come to us easily and we realise the spirit world can communicate with us through spirit guides– even if we don’t understand it ourselves.

Staying in this blissful stage would be marvellous. But, unfortunately it’s not to be. At some point, different for everybody, we will move into stage 3…

Stage 3: Darkness Floods Back In

This is the stage where you realise there is much healing to be done. You’ve had the euphoria of Stage 2 and it’s been magnificent. But spiritual awakening happens for a reason. It happens to help you grow.

In order to grow you need to release the things holding you back. Christians often call this ‘forgiveness’. It’s unhealthy to hold on to things – and tiring to carry around excess baggage. We need to release this unforgiveness for our spiritual growth to occur.

This is going to be one of the most difficult stages you will go through. It is dark. It’s scary. It’s sometimes known as The Dark Night of the Soul, although it’s rarely only a night – and it’s not particularly dark for the soul, but certainly will be for you. If you’re in this stage and struggling, the linked article is definitely worth a read.

Sometimes the things you’ll need to deal with haven’t come from this lifetime. They may be from a lifetime before. Your soul knows they’re there, but until you began the spiritual awakening process, your physical being did not. Dragging through these things can be painful.

But necessary.

A butterfly that does not push themselves out of the pupae when it morphs from a caterpillar to a butterfly cannot fly. If it does not struggle, whilst hanging upside down, to pump the fluid from its body into its wings it will never fly. It will wither and die.

So it is with you. You need to overcome the emergence of your new self through difficulty and releasing the things holding back your wings.

Sometimes you will have to deal with things from this lifetime as well as things from previous lifetimes. Your soul knows all. And your mind will not want to deal with these things. The weight of these things is holding you back though. Accept them all as learning experiences which have shaped who you are today but do not bind you.

This stage can feel very dark, heavy and depressive. It can feel like you are dying. Perhaps the chrysalis feels this way as the caterpillar turns into a beautiful butterfly. In a way, you are dying. Your old self is. The old self that hung on to past hurts, that let yourself be bound by those old emotions, is dying. But a new you will emerge. With renewed energy and less baggage. Imagine how much lighter you will feel when you’re not carrying around all that excess baggage!

If you find this stage becoming overwhelming there are few things to note.

Firstly REACH OUT TO SOMEONE. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. FIND A MENTOR OR SOMEONE WITH WHOM YOU CAN CHAT SAFELY.

Secondly remember that this too shall pass. It may be slow – depending on how much you have to deal with. It may take months or even years. You will need patience. But you will come through it a better person. A stronger person. And a more forgiving person.

It’s also worth noting that some days will be better than others. And some days will be worse. This is just natural and normal.

Once you come through it, you will realise that it was necessary and one of the most important steps of spiritual awakening and you wouldn’t want it any other way.

Stage 4: Emptiness

Some people refer to this stage as the ‘Hermit Stage’ of the spiritual awakening process. This stage can feel nearly as bad as the Darkness stage. It’s not necessarily a stage on its own, but can be considered as the latter stages of the Darkness. In this stage though you will feel disconnected again. You will think the universe has abandoned you.

You’ll feel cleansed but empty.

You’ll not hear the spirit communicating with you. You’ll feel alone, cut off from that oneness that you felt with the universe and everything around you.

You’ll be wanting to go back to Stage 2. You’ll want to feel that high again. You’ll want to be ignorant but happy. You’ll wonder what on earth Stage 3 was all for.

But this stage is a time of rest and recuperation. It is necessary to recharge your batteries. You should not underestimate what you’ve achieved during your dark stage. And you should not underestimate the amount of energy it has taken to come through that stage. Spiritual awakening is tiring and spiritual awakening can be painful too.

Rest. Relax. Enjoy the silence. Keep yourself pampered, soothed and balanced and know that when your energy levels are returned, you will progress through this stage too.

Be patient. Your soul knows when you’re rested enough.

Stage 5: Becoming Grounded

When you’re leaving the emptiness stage you’ll start to feel more grounded. That sense of connection will return, but you’ll realise you need to remain rooted to the ground. This is important because energy flows to ground.

If you are not grounded the energies of the spirit cannot flow through you. A bird on an overhead wire has no energy flowing through them. (This is just as well in the case of electricity cables)!

You will feel pulled into the spirit. Like being pulled up into the sky. But our roots must remain in the ground.

As we progress through this stage we will feel like we are finally growing up. We have moved through the child-like states of the Bliss. We moved into the angsty teenager stage of the Darkness. And we came through the early adult years of the Emptiness when we left school and didn’t really know what to do next.

Now we’re beginning our spiritual adulthood. We can start to ground our lessons we’ve learned so far, both from this life and previous, and bring those lessons into our everyday life.

Lessons we may not have seen the reason for when they were being taught, will now find a way to be useful. We now realise we can integrate the spiritual life we have with our earthly (grounded) life. Our heads are not in the clouds any more. We’re returning to reality but keeping the experiences and abilities we’ve gained. We’re keeping it real but knowing there’s more.

It’s through this stage of the spiritual awakening process that we can learn to protect ourselves from negative energies from other people. We can send those energies straight through us into the ground without holding on to them. Like an earth rod protects an electrician from being electrocuted, so grounding yourself protects you from other’s energies.

During this grounding phase you learn to use your energies wisely. You learn to wield them powerfully without burning yourself in the process. You control the energy and you become much more powerful at manifesting outcomes that you desire.

And in this stage the feeling of oneness returns. You will feel at one with yourself, those around you. You’ll feel connected (because you are). Your roots into the ground connect you to the universe and everyone. This will feel similar to the stage 2 blissfulness. But it’s different this time. You will learn to control the energies. Your experiences are now grounded in reality instead of making you feel high and out of control.

It’s in this grounded connection that we realise everyone is going through something. We become more compassionate. We become more understanding of each other. We become more empathic. We realise that, if the circumstances were different, we could be that person behaving badly. So we cut them a break.

Through the grounded oneness, we can view other people’s circumstances as if they were our own. Because, they are. We’re all one.

Stage 6: Finale!

This is the final stage in our spiritual awakening. No, this stage is not our physical death. But this stage is where you remember who you really are. You remember that you have a purpose – even if you’re still not sure what it is.

You exude confidence because you are confident. But not arrogant. Because you can see people as if you were them (from the grounding stage). But you know you are spirit and cannot be harmed. You commit yourself to your soul’s pathway, no matter what it is. Because your soul put you here, in the specific circumstances of your birth, in order that you might reach the path you are destined to.

In this stage you know that life’s circumstances are irrelevant. You will overcome them, or walk round them or that they are simply there as part of the experience. They will not grate on you as they used to – because they are part of your rich tapestry. You will have realised that the destination is not the important part of life, it is the journey itself. The journey is the destination.

This stage of spiritual awakening can take years to reach. And once you reach it, you may have to fight to hold on to it, because your ego will always want to take possession again. This is why we say the spiritual awakening process is ongoing and lasts a lifetime.

But do not fear, if you find you’ve slipped out of this stage of spiritual awakening and perhaps returned to Stage 3 or 4, you will navigate those stages much faster this time. It’s possible for this to happen because something you thought you’d dealt with in stage 3 (or didn’t know you hadn’t dealt with in stage 3) surfaces and needs your attention. It’s OK. Go through it and learn. It will likely, and hopefully, be less painful this time. Embrace it, don’t fight it and you’ll come out the otherside, back to Step 5 and 6 again in due course.

Chronicle Your Spiritual Awakening Journey

One of the best ways of navigating the steps of spiritual awakening is to keep a journal of your progress. This can be any kind of journal, just a notebook or a day by day diary. Anything that you keep to write down how you’re feeling on each given day will help you keep track of the stages you’re going through.

You may very well be surprised when you read back over your spiritual awakening process to discover how far you’ve come. And a journal can help you realise when you’re facing something you’ve already faced before. It can help jog your memory to overcome the same issue again.

Spiritual Awakening Journal book
Click the image (or here) to see our Awakening Journal on Amazon

If you’re looking for a spiritual awakening journal – we have produced one specifically for MysticalSpiritualPathfinder readers here. It has a link back to this article to help you find your way back to this post easily if you find yourself getting stuck while you’re awakening.

Summary

We believe there are 6 stages of spiritual awakening. The stages of spiritual awakening should be thought of as a spectrum rather than discrete stages of awakening. This means that the spiritual awakening process might take you backwards on occasion as well as forwards. Just when you think you’re in the final stages of spiritual awakening, something will happen that jolts you back to an earlier phase. That’s OK, it’s normal and natural.

Awakening your spirit is going to be like a butterfly coming out of a chrysalis. Like the caterpillar that goes in, you’ll get melted into a strange blob. You’ll feel that way anyway. But what comes out of the chrysalis at the end of the spiritual awakening journey is beautiful.

The struggle will be real. It will be hard. Sometimes spiritual awakenings can be painful. If butterflies could talk they may well tell us that it’s the most difficult thing in the world.

But butterflies fly. Caterpillars can’t. And if we want to ‘fly’ we must metamorph ourselves through these stages of spiritual awakening.

We must surrender to the spiritual awakening process. We must not resist the process for it will take longer and be more painful if we do that. We must not be angry. We must try to let go of that. And we must forgive ourselves when we inevitably do get angry.

Because we must understand that it is our soul that wants this metamorphosis to happen. And our soul is us. So ultimately we would be angry and upset and resisting our own selves.

Surrender to the process and understand that although it’s tough you can get through it. You will get through it. You will emerge the other side as a beautiful butterfly even though you went in as a squishy, weird looking caterpillar.

Surrender by letting go of all your attachments. Experience is all there is. Attachments aren’t real. Don’t be afraid. There is nothing to be afraid of. This is you, are you afraid of you? Imagine your metamorphosis as watching a movie. What you are unraveling within yourself cannot hurt you as a screen cannot hurt you in a movie. But you can learn from it.

And above all else, seek out a like-minded person or persons to talk to if it does become too much. You are not alone. We are all connected. You may be surprised that the like minded person will turn up when you most need them. But if not, it’s OK to seek them too.

All the very best as you go through your stages of spiritual awakening!

If you’ve enjoyed this post please feel free to share it with your friends using the buttons below. If you have any comments, questions or other feedback please let us know using the comment form below.

Thanks for reading!