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Am I Bipolar or Waking Up? Paperback – September 17, 2011

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Am I Bipolar or Waking Up? + Spiritual Emergency: When Personal Transformation Becomes a Crisis (New Consciousness Readers) + The Stormy Search for the Self: A Guide to Personal Growth through Transformational Crisis
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Editorial Reviews


This book brings light to those wondering "Am I really crazy?". Blackwell's writing is intimately revealing but also immensely engaging and supportive. He opens an important question: "Are we misdiagnosing and medicating young adults who are not crazy--just in the process of finding out who they really are?" His answer: It would serve them better to give them more love and understanding and less drive-thru medications. Blackwell is leading the way for others to follow. 
Emma Bragdon, PhD, author "Sourcebook for Helping People with Spiritual Problems"

About the Author

About the Author Sean Blackwell is the creator of the YouTube video series, bipolarORwakingUP. He’s dedicated his life to introducing anyone who will listen to the spiritually healing aspects of what is normally labeled as bipolar disorder. Born in Toronto, he now lives with his wife Ligia in São Paulo, Brazil, because Canada was just too civilized. For more about Sean and his mission, go to

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (September 17, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1461178258
  • ISBN-13: 978-1461178255
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #421,808 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Danielle C on November 17, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Sean Blackwell writes in an authentic and well thought out manner about his life before and after his very personal and confronting spiritual awakening, in which the world around him and his perception of it had changed so much he thought he had died and was in a sort of middle-world between heaven and earth. The book deals with the integration of his experience in returning to the world we live in, with all of it's troubles. He would never see the world in the same way, and goes on to explore his calling in life through listening to his dreams, traveling around the world, connecting with his spirituality, and making radical changes to his life.

The author has dedicated much of his time to battling the myth, fear and ignorance surrounding the topic of mental illness and direct spiritual/mystical experience, following his fascinating experience of dealing with not one but two relatives who suddenly went through a strikingly similar shift in consciousness, with the experiences being treated and medicated as Bipolar Disease by psychiatrists.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who has had any sort of experience that has been treated by our society as a mental illness, as it so often is, which they felt had the potential for great personal transformation within it. For anyone wishing to gain some insight into the mystical experience, shared by humans around the world throughout all of culture and history, I must say that Sean shares what it is like to be in such a state, and what it is like to live in the real world having gone through such a transformation in an elegant, easy to understand manner.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Justaguy on September 7, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
(I'm sorry this got so long, but this issue is very personal to me. If it's too long for you, then just skip it. No big deal)

I'm sure there are people who get effective, conventional medication and treatment for their bipolar disorders and are very happy with how the healthcare system in their country has served them.

But if you're like me, the whole experience of going through psychosis along with all the therapy, hospital visits and medications is challenging and bewildering at best, and a soul crushing nightmare at its worst. I don't believe doctors are bad or evil people. Most of them are genuinely trying to help people. But I am compelled to raise my voice and speak the brutal truth. And the truth is that the healthcare system here in America is totally dysfunctional and broken, especially when it comes to psychiatric issues. The drugs I've been given to "treat" me all made me feel awful and I was horrified that 2 of the people in my outpatient therapy program were there because they were addicted to one of the medications they'd prescribed for me! Wtf!

In the last 20 years or so, we've seen the largest expansion of the pharmaceutical industry in history. There's been an explosion of new drugs hitting the market along with all those TV commercials, magazine and internet ads all just begging you to ask your doctor about their latest, shiny new drug. (Look at how happy those actors look in the commercial!) You'd think that with all this new medicine coming out that the people of America would be the healthiest they've ever been right? Nope, not even close. In fact, it's the opposite. America is more obese, out of shape, diseased, and mentally ill than it has ever been at any point in the history of the republic.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By FlowingStreams on September 26, 2011
Format: Paperback
When a person walks into the unknown, who do they trust? What does an appropriate Guide look and sound like? How can one recognize a Guide who is worthy to follow, to travel alongside of and with? When a person is shaken to their core by experiences that no longer make "logical" sense within their known world, who does one turn to?

Sean Blackwell's book presents his own journey into the world of Spiritual Emergency and shamanic awakening, and does so with great personal transparency. It is that very transparency and willingness to share his experiences, biases and influences that make this a trusted "Guide" for those traveling into the world of emergence themselves (or walking with a loved one traveling that path). We trust those who know the territory, have traveled a path like our own, and can recognize potential missteps and pitfalls. We trust those who have taken the time to truly integrate their experience in ways that inform their own map forward, and are willing to share their own integration process so that we can modify our own maps as well. As we walk into territory that feels increasingly uncertain and unfamiliar, a guide who shares their own solid footing helps us to ground, to find places to land.

In this case, it is equally important to have a Guide who challenges the usual map of the territory. With so many people experiencing what appear to be psychotic breaks (with accompanying bi-polar diagnoses) and being funneled immediately into the psychiatric and pharmaceutical pipeline, it's even more important to have the awareness that there are alternative paths, alternative explanations for what is being experienced.
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