I’ll start off by saying that I self identify as Indigo and once I was confronted in a dream to know if I was an alien. I said I was, but that this is not my first life on earth. These were once words my conscious self would not utter, but I often reflect on what I say in dreams and hold them to high regard as they are coming from an unhindered self. So I might be an alien.
I came across indigo and crystal children in texts and online mostly framed from or for the perspective of the hopeful parent dealing with a difficult or special child. These emphasized our many gifts, but rarely from a self guided perspective. I was frustrated, as my own relationship with my parents has been turbulent, why should I trust anyone in a parental role to do good by their indigo child; their special child; their disabled child. Often parents do have the best intentions but that doesn’t their perceptions or ideas of supporting their child is helpful. In fact, it can be quite harmful.
If this narrative of the indigo / crystal / rainbow / special child is born out of a need to put distance between or redefine a disability, it can be harmful in that you may end up denying the very real challenges the child might face due to their disability (and here I am, writing this at the parents exactly as how had frustrated me, but they need a little bit of cautionary scolding). Another thing that can happen, is that by assigning a kind of spiritual purpose or narrative to your childs life you may end up spiritually objectifying them; denying them their humanity; limitations and self direction.
Even when I read about these “special” families from the perspective of indigos, they were still pandering to their parents, often guided to this place of self-IDing as Indigo by their parents (and as such, I cannot be sure that what they are claiming is true or just hopeful brainwashed banter).
And so, within our spiritual communities and new age bookstores we have a problem with representation…. which I discovered through many botched purchases, hopeless store inventory searchers and general discomfort at the mishmash of unethically cultivated materials.
I came across the concept of indigo around the time I was diagnosed with ADHD as an adult. It seemed like a sweet idea, to be this person of spiritual importance but it didn’t actually seem to match who I was at the time. At the time I was also barely escaping my own brainwashing regarding my sexuality and religious beliefs; I was living a life of discomfort and discontinuity, I was so deep in the queer closet I thought I was the furthest wall of it, living just under the top coat of Paint.
And so I needed to reprogram. Reset. Run towards the things that scared me most. Needed a sense of myself and the world around me which I did not have except through my professed perfect version of heterosexuality (100% STRAIGHT!).
The ADHD medication I was on, the drugs I thought I needed to function and heal, started to bend reality and this trembling light inside me started to break through. At first I was a hurricane, then I was a supernova, reality bent and twisted around me with uncontrollable ease it seemed; I started to doubt the realness of everyone else, a lot of things happened in a complex interweave around my mind…. and that’s the pretty verison.
The not-so pretty version, that spiritual narratives around mental illness or disability can miss, is the struggle, loss of rights and trauma through our reactions and treatment of these issues and people. Being hospitalized for seven weeks is not fun, not being able to communicate what I was experiencing was frustrating and doctors who wanted to know what my “delusions” were so they could laugh at them, sickened me.
I would say a lot of this experience was like dreaming while awake, and just like how dreams don’t make sense in a linear way, my experiences and delusions obviously didn’t fit with reality, but they served as metaphors for the emotions I had but did not have words for as of it. So the complete breakdown in my functioning and communication was understandable, and never seemed “crazy” to me, as I was trying to put myself back together. It was through careful tending to these feelings and ideas that I was able to heal. I had to sit in these delusions and process and integrate them with the real world.
I felt not whole and I made peace with this, I looked at myself as shattered and this was ok. I called myself multi-spirited for a while, I played with words trying to find what would weave me back. There are some nuances I don’t share, because for the most part, they don’t matter a lot, just as long as people know I am in some sort of other category.
My illness was a gift, I could say. But that risks people writing off the struggles that have come with it. It would be much more of a gift if I was better empowered to hold it. Instead, I weave together on my own how to hold it.
I see my mental illness and my gender identity as interconnected. Because my mental illness was born out of the suppression and rebirth of my gender; it was a large feeding factor in the circumstances that lead me there. As well, I see disability in myself as being connected to my illness, in having to mask certain struggles, in having those struggles ignored or objectified, or having success seen in only one way (high grades, for example). This combination of incapability with the world as is/as was woke in me this fire that I always kept tamed down (indigo). This metaphor of seeming like an outsider yet familiar (starseed, a concept I am still high resistant to applying to myself despite the aforementioned dream; yet I vividly believe in for other people).
This spiritual metaphorical self, does not seem to meld well with the rest of the world, which is part of why have an alternate twitter account for this things, yet I hope to somehow meld them with my whole self, to never feel like I am leaving part of my soul behind. However, in sharing and enter spiritual spaces I see people who aren’t critical about the metaphors they apply to themselves as having a deeper more personal meeting and I am paranoid that they are lying to themselves, much like I lied to myself when I forcing myself into a binary gender. I see people who latch onto their stories of soul origins or past lifes or futures as a way of escapism (this is a critique others have shared and I have sense picked up on).
However in the realm of magick and soul work, everything seems so fragile, and peoples whole sense of being and belonging may be built on concepts and metaphors without realizing, so they take everything that comes with that metaphor as well, as they have never reached the deeper meaning of it. This is, I think, how people are so easily able to carry forward beliefs and programming of hatred around issues like sexual purity or gender variances or “same-sex” attractions. So often people are latching onto new seeming beliefs and feeling themselves progressive but they drag a whole set of past dogmatic hang-up’s with them. And because their identities are dependent on these metaphors and they perceive themselves as having done deep inner work, they feel wholly vindicated in these issues. This is not to mention how a lot of spiritual practices also employ philosophies of racism, though I can not fully or properly critique that as a white person (here is one example of where I have encountered that though).
In short, the point of this, is that I see people who may claim to have special spiritual meaning who get a lot of fanfare but who’s perceptions may be tainted by the projections of their families and friends; especially as we are eager to assign spiritual meaning to others lifes; or they may adapt that label out of seemingly popularity but I do not see that they are upholding what that label means. This is ironic, given my status as a non-binary person, people may seem to think that is a “popular” label but this relates back to when I insisted I was a woman because it was what I thought society wanted. To actually reach a point of clarity and self-determination can be very difficult with mixed messages and mixed representations of what these things mean. It becomes harder to sort fact from fiction in a world of metaphors. I just watched Noah, and I loved it, because I felt like it was a metaphorical story told in a way that’s relevant to the state of the world as is. There is so much meaning that can be gathered from stories, but ultimately we often dissect and disrespect them and the people they came from.
When I feel like an outcast and a freak for standing out, the story of indigo resonates with me, because it ties into a feeling of my souls purpose, to burn through illusion, to do so gently. I have had thoughts of once being an angel who was cast from heaven for perceived disobedience, only to prove myself on Earth as saying there is nothing wrong with those things, that which I am. These are my precious “dillusions” which help me make sense of my life, and perhaps I am disabled for needing them (a symptom of my neurodivergence) or perhaps I am gifted for what they mean.