Egregores, Meta-Religion, & Differentiating Christ From Christianity
Lessons from my journey with Jesus
You may have noticed that I’ve referenced Jesus Christ a bunch of times in the past few months.
This is because I’ve been having some powerful experiences of Christ in my life.
I can describe these experiences as a Warm Presence of Unconditional Love.
A Cozy Bonfire of Unconditional Love.
Sometimes even an Inferno of Unconditional Love.
These sensations of Love are felt predominantly in my chest, in my Heart center. And at times there has been a distinct sense that this Love is specifically the Love of the Christ Heart. In one experience there was even an accompanying visionary impression of Jesus. The majority of these experiences have occurred while sober.
This has all been quite powerful for me. Interestingly, these experiences began (or at least significantly intensified) during the most recent jungle retreats my fiance Tanja and I hosted at Kumankaya, an ayahuasca healing center in Mexico. Kumankaya was created and is stewarded by our dear friends Remi and Ashley Delaune, who happen to be Christian. Remi was a Christian monk living mostly in silence for ~20 years in France, before being called to the curandero path ~12 years ago. He views his Shipibo ayahuasca practice/lineage not as a religion, but as a set of healing tools. I find this fascinating, as I have never met or heard of other Christian ayahuasca shamans, apart from Remi and Ashley.
I had spent several weeks at Kumankaya previously, yet for whatever reason, this recent trip was the first time that the Christ connection at Kumankaya came through for me with resounding strength. Spontaneously, I found myself praying with great sincerity and devotion, asking God and Jesus to make my Heart “the Sacred Heart of Jesus.” I have continued to say this prayer and similar prayers regularly since the retreat. Sometimes I ask Jesus to come into my Heart. Other times I just pray to God and silently say something like, “God, if it is your will, may I open my Heart and be unconditional Love today and all days, toward myself and all others.”
I can’t really rationally explain why I’m doing this. It just feels right. Once that Warm, Cozy Bonfire of Christ Love was felt in the Heart, there was simply a knowing that this Love is Home. For me Christ simply feels like one face of this Love—one expression of it. A face of God, you could say. I don’t have the feeling, as many Christians profess, that Jesus Christ is the only way to that core Love that we are. Christ feels like a tremendously powerful avatar of Divinity—one that is karmically, energetically, and archetypically designed to be profoundly resonant and medicinal for some beings to tap into.
Interestingly, I was raised Catholic, went to Catholic mass every Sunday for my first 18 years, and even attended a Catholic elementary school called Sacred Heart. So there is a strong historical relation to Christianity for me, and I do suppose there is a link between this Catholic history and my recent experiences of Christ. Although, I find myself wondering: Am I connecting to Christ like this because I was raised Catholic, or did God place me in a Catholic family because my soul is karmically closely connected to Christ? Or both? Neither? Far beyond either? A fascinating paradox to contemplate.
Anyway, I’m truly grateful for these experiences of Christ. They have been more powerful than any experience of Christ that I ever had at any prior point in my life.
In the midst of these experiences, naturally the question arose of whether I am being called back to the Catholic or Christian religion. I felt into it quite a lot, even listening to some Christian conversion testimonies and lightly researching the possibility of becoming some sort of priest or chaplain. This felt like quite a significant shift for me. I stopped going to mass and ceased to consider myself a Catholic when I reached university at age 18. That was 13 years ago.
Ultimately, for now, despite feeling an immense Love for the Living Presence of Christ, I decided against returning to Christianity. Here’s why:
The Egregore of Christianity
“Egregore” is an esoteric concept that refers to a collective thought-form that has gained a measure of autonomous consciousness.
The idea is basically that when a substantial number of people direct a lot of energy toward a particular thought-form, that thought-form gradually begins to take on a life of its own, informed by the energy that has been poured into it.
It develops a certain gravitational pull, you could say—something resembling a sentient will, a set of preferences or tendencies or idiosyncrasies moving in a certain direction. Some writers assert that egregores are also akin to portals via which nonhuman intelligences influence our world:
“However, there is a second definition, an older, more significant, and perhaps frightening one. Here, an egregore is more than an “autonomous entity composed of and influencing the thoughts of a group of people”; it is also the home or conduit for a specific psychic intelligence of a nonhuman nature connecting the invisible dimensions with the material world in which we live. This, in fact, is the true source of power of the ancient cults and their religious-magical practices.”"
— Mark Stavish, Egregores
When I began to research the world of Christianity in the wake of my Christ experiences, something interesting and kinda unsettling started to happen:
I felt myself coming into the subtle grips of something. A large, ancient organism, sorta like a behemoth deep-sea creature drifting unnoticed through the dense black.
Gradually, my meaning-making developed around this, and I began to theorize that I was feeling the gravitational pull of the egregore of Christianity.
Christianity is the largest religion in the world, with 2+ *billion* adherents worldwide. It’s thousands of years old. Mankind has been pouring a *lot* of energy into this collective thought-form for a long time. If anything can be said to be a ‘good candidate’ for having become an (enormous and sophisticated) egregore, Christianity can.
The thing is, the egregore of Christianity did not feel like the Presence of Christ Love.
The Christ Love felt like a Flame of Pure Unconditional Love for all of Creation, with no trace of anything else. The egregore of Christianity, on the other hand, felt substantially polluted by judgment, condemnation, elitism, group antagonism, and a ‘witch hunting’ tendency. When I immersed myself in some Christian content and was pulled somewhat into the field of this egregore, I actually started to feel pretty judgmental toward myself and some of the most dear people in my life. I started to feel suspicious of all practices and artifacts from other spiritual movements and traditions, especially ‘New Age’ and ‘witch-y’ stuff. I even went so far as to tell my beloved Tanja that I was wondering if our spiritual differences might end up pulling us apart, due to my sudden strong feelings about Christianity.
This critical inquiry and sensing process was not totally off the mark, as I do personally feel that ~all spiritual and religious movements in 2023 are at least partially or substantially co-opted by ‘dark forces’ that seek to lead mankind astray. This is not a statement of judgment, and it doesn’t mean a person cannot healthily practice a given religion or spiritual system. It just means that significant wisdom and discernment are required, to be able to do so without falling into any traps. I wrote about this at great length in ‘The War for the Soul of Mankind.’
What I needed to clearly realize, was that Christianity is not at all immune from the aforementioned phenomenon. Christianity also seems to me to be substantially in the grips of ‘dark forces,’ at this stage of its development. There is a lot of judgment, condemnation, hypocrisy, and elitism within Christianity. A lot of hollow ritual that lacks vital connection to the Living Presence of Christ. Replace the word “Tao” with “Christ” in this classic Lao Tzu quote, and it’s quite relevant here:
"When the Tao is lost, there is goodness.
When goodness is lost, there is morality.
When morality is lost, there is ritual.
Ritual is the husk of true faith, the beginning of chaos..."
— Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
As such, if it’s not already clear, it’s important to say directly that:
Christ is not Christianity.
One can be a Lover of Christ without being a Christian.
I count myself as such a one.
As I came to these realizations, I recorded the following video, attempting to verbalize the distinction between Christ and Christianity:
The apparent recognition of the Christian egregore was slightly haunting for me.
It prompted me to consider how all of the major world religions have likely developed giant egregorical intelligences that are adept at luring unsuspecting humans into their energetic and ideological spiderwebs. The key thing is that the energy and values of the egregore—shaped by the wills of countless humans and perhaps a bunch of miscellaneous otherworldly intelligences—will tend to differ greatly from the energy and values of Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, Mohammed, Lao Tzu, or other sage prophets that various religions are supposedly based upon.
So again, it’s possible to participate in these religions in a healthy way, but it requires a great spiritual will and discerning wisdom to do so.
My sense is that those who are successfully doing this, are focused very directly on God/Allah/Brahman/Tao/Source/etc, or particular saints or sages or avatars of the religion, and are entering into direct connection with those faces of Divinity, rather than being swept up in the generalized maelstrom of the egregore.
Another wild thing to consider, though, is that there are likely also egregores associated with every human name/metaphor/symbol for Divinity—including “God,” “Jesus,” “Allah,” “Buddha,” “buddha-nature,” “Tao,” “Lao Tzu,” and so on and so forth.
For me this partially explains why different names for the Nameless One can seem to carry such different energetic flavors. For me this recognition deeply underscores the need to sensitively discern beyond the egregorical and even archetypal levels to contact the essence of (avatars of) Divinity; to continuously innovate new names for Divinity; and to regularly practice burning down and letting go of all names/words, so as to contact the true Heart of Divinity as purely and directly as possible, circumventing misleading egregorical influences.
If these hypotheses are all substantially true or valid, then these considerations seem quite essential to consider, for anyone hoping to cultivate a useful meta-religious approach to life in 2023.
I’m using the term ‘meta-religion’ to refer to an approach to religion that is in a sense ‘beyond religion,’ in that it is aware of the (egregorical) meta-dynamics and meta-patterns that tend to characterize all major religions and spiritual movements, and is thus able to make wiser and more discerning choices regarding how to go about practicing religion or spirituality on Earth in 2023.
In essence, what I’m saying is that, for anyone considering joining various religions, it would be really useful to hear the words, “Oh, yeah, by the way, all major religious and spiritual movements (+ figures and deities) develop egregores that have their own will and gravity pulling in a direction that tends to dramatically differ from that of the founder or avatar of the religion, not to mention Source. The closer you get to any religion or spiritual sect, the more likely the egregore will start subtly finding ways to hook into you and lead you astray. You’ve got to be really aware of this, especially considering that most or all religions and spiritual movements in 2023 are partially or substantially in the grips of ‘dark forces.’”
Anyway, so that’s some of my current meaning-making and armchair-theorizing around some tricky subjects. My confidence level in the accuracy of this egregore stuff isn’t outrageously high; these are ideas that I’m holding fairly lightly and I recommend others do the same. Yet, there’s something here that feels important, or at least worth chewing on, so I felt called to share.
I’m curious where this newfound sense of connection to Christ will lead me. Let’s see.
Cozy Bonfire of Love,
P.S. What are your thoughts on all this? I love hearing from you. Please leave a comment or ‘heart’ this post to let me know your feelings and help this post reach more people on Substack.
I was on the ‘#TEAMrabbithole’ podcast the other day! Check it out, it was a wild and wavy conversation! At 1:17:30 I answer the question, “Why do we suffer?,” and the answer came out pretty cool:
Work With Me
I’m currently on a beautiful upward-spiral with the work that I’m doing. Things are flowing, and I feel like I’m showing up more powerfully than ever to help people heal, activate their creative gifts, and become what they truly are. The beings I’m working with are undergoing palpable shifts through the work we’re doing—learning to love all of themselves more deeply while stepping forward onto the path of creative leadership. This is awesome and inspiring to see.
Presently that work is happening primarily within the men’s group I lead and my one-on-one coaching & healing practice. I’m also offering customized psychedelic immersions and am planning an ayahuasca & Bufo retreat in Mexico for early December later this year.
If you feel a spark to work with me, let’s talk! Comment, drop me an email, or book a free exploration call with me, and let’s find out how I can best serve you.
More New Music
I keep dropping new tunes! Making a lot of experimental music lately. The other day I had an intentional entheogenic ceremony and made these two—they’re a lot of FUN if you need a pick me up:
And here’s another track off of my recent album, Demian Steppenwolf & the Quest for the Holy Nonsense:
If you dig the tunes, follow me on Bandcamp and Spotify, add my songs to playlists, and spread the word! <3
Peace & Playfulness,
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Another great essay! Man!... You're forcing me to think! My son is going through exactly the same experience you just described and started to return to his Catholic roots and reading anything he can about the Catholic faith. Of course, he would like his parents to join in.
I, too, had some mystical experiences, but I am also concerned about the Christian egregore (although
I didn't call it like that). When it comes to Christianity, my natural attraction is towards "contemplative Christianity" where the emphasis is on the "feelings of/in the heart" as opposed to theology, rules and rituals. I don't know if you're familiar with the work (and videos) of father Richard Rohr (a Franciscan friar). He has a way, it seems, to recognize the egregore and to address it in a way that makes sense. Ultimately, there has to be a primal, original, universal, ontological, spiritual reality that is beyond cultural differences and historical time lines. I think all religions try to touch that ultimate reality.
In the end, it is a mystery. Maybe we should just rejoice in "this mystery" and be satisfied with knowing that we will never know. The more I peel the onion, the more mysterious it seems to get.
Keep peeling the onion Jordan!
Very interesting to read this Jordan. I feel myself walking the same edge the last year and prompted to write a whole damn essay by you.
I found it very striking how powerful that pull came on for you. I had no inkling that you had a church or catholic background. It does seem that the christian code can be waiting under the surface and come back online with force. The most promising form of this being a relation to christ consciousness primarily and then an interrogation of the church and christian lineage. Unfortunately, without direct experience people may feel the call and only seem to find their way back into the hollowed out husk you describe. I think elements of the experience we have had are likely to happen more and more and a lot of people will fell called back to faith. Consequently, they'll be called into direct confrontation with their own religious trauma and what was limiting in the first place. Hopefully there is a creative urge borne out of this yearning and not a mere reversion to what was.
I see a really rich space emerging for a 'christianity-beyond-itself' in dialogue with other very distinct ways of knowing. This has been a very live dialogue for me and one I'm hoping to continue in the 'wrestling with christianity' series of SenseSpace.
PS. Fascinated to hear about your christian shaman friends.