Monday, October 21, 2013

True Confessions of A Therapist

True Confessions of A Therapist
Observations and Conversations on the Passage of Time,
With Me, Myself and God

I would like to begin this journal by telling you a bit about myself. I would like to tell you just how circuitous the journey of me finding me was for me.  Just how tricky it was to begin to believe that I was actually having a life and not lost in one. (BTW once found, know this nothing is resolved, it has only just begun)
It begins with me coming to a place of understanding that, just like everyone else who has arrived here on the face of this planet, upon arrival, I was instantly endowed with a survival suit. A body, to live in and work with for the duration of my stay on the planet.
The survival suit seems to be a requirement to be here.
This survival suit/body comes equipped with many interesting devices and processes but one of the most interesting is that it allows us to perform two major functions.
·      One, operate the survival suit.
·      Two, thinks about things.
The latter was the part that was dangerous for me.
Thinking About Things, That Is
Because, over time, as I thought about it, I came to a place where I firmly believed that this is what I did best.  Thought about things.
Now that does not mean that I did this 'thinking about things' best, it just means that I firmly believed that I did.  And believe me there is a difference.  Of course, with the process of thinking about things, naturally came the notion that I understood what it was that I thought I thought about.
You see the problem, don't you?
It's actually scary when you frame it like that.
Well, it follows naturally, that as these two aspects of my life's predicament settled in upon me, that is, me operating the survival suit in a hostile environment and me thinking about it.  As these two aspects coupled with my analysis of my thoughts, more thinking about things, all began to weigh down upon my shoulders.  So, to lighten the load, I began to make conclusions about my life and about those significant others in my life and me as I related to them and their circumstances. One of the more profound insights of supposed understanding was; "I AM" the survival suit.  After all what other conclusion would you come to if you had forgotten from 'whence you came'? 
Actually, what I came to understand after a very protracted period of time thinking about it, was that I was just in my survival suit. (Oh yes, nearly forgot and nearly left that out didn't I, from 'whence we came'!  . . . Now there is something to think about . . . really!  You can sort of get lost in that one without trying too hard, if you think about it!)




After three thinks quit;
You can only hurt yourself after that.
Subtle Difference In Words Worlds Apart In Process.
I have also found out through my intermingling with some of the rest of humanity observations on life that most others don't know that they are just in their survival suits too.  They don't know this as a 'truth'.  They may know it as a fact but not a truth.  There is a difference.  I do think that most suspect this is true but prefer to ignore it or if they do know this to be true then they sure as hell don't want to have a damned thing to do with the idea. They, like me, for the longest time, were or are more then happy basking in the bliss of 'playful ignorance'.  It seemed safer that way, not nearly as hostile, somehow. So, it naturally followed that they would much rather be who they thought they were, then who they really are.  And of course there are various levels of support that are necessary for me to believe that I am who I think I am.  This generally involved me believing you were who you thought you were and you returning the compliment of believing I was who I thought I was, thus we could pretend to be who we thought we were together.  Together is the key word because the problem was I couldn't do that alone.  This is often mistakenly called friendship or relationship.  Actually one of my predominate variations on a theme was that I thought I was a therapist and I needed you to need me or I didn't like you, if the truth were known.  That way, things would appear to be safer and easier to understand at least for the moment. It also served me well because as long as I could focus on you I could avoid me.  Any bells ring for anyone here!  They did for me.
I believe the next key word here is 'appear' because like me, most put the term 'I hope' in front of most everything they did.  I know I did.  Sort of like blind faith hoping that the right thing . . . what ever that was . . . would happen and we could make safely on and into what ever is next. 
The Joys of Conditional Prayer
'I hope' became the codicil phrase for a deeper belief structure that haunted me for most of my life.  I went through life for the longest time with variations on a theme of this codicil hanging off of me or being offered up as my daily mantra.  "I hope that" or "I prayer that" . . . this will happen or not happen or I could have or not have. 
Remember, that after the 'hope that or prayer that' part, just fill in the blank(s) with whatever it is that you want to have appear in front of you or whatever it is that you would like have disappear from in front of you.
Translated This Means
"Dear God please give me (fill in the blank) and finally prove once and for all that I am special." . . . But here is the kicker, "Not in your eyes oh Lord but in mine".  There is something backward in that request and it took me years to come up on it and understand that Ready, Fire, Aim was not necessarily the way to do it, but . . .
'Dear Lord Prove To Me Once And For All That I Am Special'.
Well, here is the proof . . . You're here and you're having this experience. You're right in the middle of it.  Without the specialness of the creation, you would not be here and neither would any of this, but here you are, right smack in the middle, and having a problem with it all at the same time, and here is here for you to be here in. So, if you want to get particular about it and give it a few thoughts, you may want to notice that there is a 'here' to be in. What a gift!  Even though most don't notice it as that.
Simple, isn't it, if only you'd notice!
So If You Really Want To Think About Proving Specialness Try This. 
Try combining the thought of: all this reality that we are a part of, together with the thought, that if it wasn't here to be part of or to be here in, then we would not be here trying to get what it is that it seems we can't get from whoever or whatever it is that we are trying to get it from.
Phew . . . Now there is one to think about.
There really is no other proof when you stop and think about no matter how I try.  So the job at hand seems to be that I have to accept me as me and me as being in the midst of something I did not create. 
Really quite simple if you stop and think about it.  All things-being fair.
It Is Really Quite Simple.
My life is mine and the specialness of my existence is simply proved by my being here in the first place.  A Gift of Peace1 quotes A Course in Miracles nicely as it develops this thought.  I quote:
The Pursuit of Specialness
The pursuit of specialness is always at the cost of peace.
You are not special. If you think you are, and would defend your specialness against the truth of what you really are, how can you know the truth?
Specialness always makes comparisons.  It is established by a lack seen in another, and maintained by searching for, and keeping clear in sight, all lacks it can perceive.
When peace is not with you entirely, and when you suffer pain of any kind, you have beheld some sin within your brother, and have rejoiced at what you thought was there.  Your specialness seemed safe because of it.
The pursuit of specialness must bring you pain.
Forgiveness is the end of specialness. Only illusions can be forgiven, and then they disappear.  Forgiveness is release from all illusion.
It is said somewhere or other that God will do for you what you can't do for yourself, not what you would like to have done for you or what you are too lazy to do or get or too befuddled to do on your own.  If you can do it then you have to.  That seems to be a great cosmic law. If you can't, then the Greater Power will supply "it" only if "it" is really necessary.
And only if!
That's life.
When I came to the appreciation of this understanding of the 'Way of Things' it was easier to believe in the truth of 'who' I really was and that I was actually having a life and not just lost in one.
There are a few naturally occurring complications along the route called my life path.
The first and foremost is a thing called "The Parents".
We all have some. Some parents are nice about it and some are not.  Some are ever present and some disappeared years ago and some left us to our own devices.  But if we are here then, we either have a set or had a set  some place, sometime.  Often as not there are as conspicuous in their absence as they were in their presence.  Now if yours are anything like my parents they had and some still have, agendas for you.  They want(ed) you to grow up and become somebody have and ego be just like them.  Sometimes that meant that the 'somebody' they would have liked you to be is 'nobody'.
But the prerequisite seems to be that as long as the 'somebodyness' is just like them, or what it is they are or were not, or would have liked to have been or . . . And the variations on that theme becomes endless then they are the gods of our determination as far as we are concerned.  They held the agenda for our growth in their hands or so it seemed at the time.
This idea may be defined as part of the problem or may be part of the conditioning, and that really is more semantic and completely depends on your point of view.  The problem here in lays, that as children, we actually believed that they know what is best for us. Often they did, and that explains by most of us did not play in traffic all that often or snake handled too much, but that blind faith in those that stood before us actually launched us onto the path of spiritual growth. 
Why launched onto a path of spiritual growth?
Simply out of the fact that at the very beginning of our life's journey there was a little confusion about whom and what was God.
Oh well, best not reveal too much too soon.
There are signposts, benchmarks and station-stops along the path.  It is essential that before embarking on life's journey, that we understand how to read the instructions that were left for us.  But first, most of us have to come to terms with and accept the fact that directions were left for us and hopefully those directions mean something.

Simple Statement of Fact:
We have to be able to read the truth these signposts' hold because our very future depends on us being able to understand what it is that we 'think' we are seeing and what it is that they are really saying.
Carl Sagan used this concept as one of his organizing principals in his book "Contact".  It seems that we have to learn how to read the weave of signposts for what they really say without trying to twist the messages into what we think they should be saying.  This urge to twist our perception seems to want to happen out a desperation and a deep-seated frustration at having been dumped into a life, into a system that we never really asked to be dumped into, in the first place like: why am I here, really?  All of this is a part of the conundrum of life and all of this is part of the journey along the path called life.
Two Opposing Forces
As I began to pay attention to these processes of attempting to appreciate my own life's conundrum, I noticed that there were always two opposing forces that set up in my consciousness.  Each with its own set of observations and values, each separate from one and other, yet at the same time contingent upon each other, and all was about what it is that I thought I noticed and appreciated about my experiences on the path of life.
It seems that as I paid close attention to these phenomena of Ying/Yang, black/white, either/or, I was actually beginning to notice the signposts or benchmarks for my journey.  I still could not read them, but at least I knew they were there to be read if I could. It seems to follow that the spiritual truth of the message contained in the signpost always had a complimentary egocentric message that offset the truth of the spiritual message contained there in. My conundrum seemed to be to know the difference, which one was which.  Because I knew that sooner or later I would have to use some form of the message as I made my next move along my life's the path.
These opposing forces can be defined differentially as 'of Spirit' and 'of Ego'.
One set of variables connects us to 'all that is' and other keeps us tied to 'our terrible dailyness' of self-seeking definitions, or of having to understand ever more hollow and never satisfactory reasons for why and always leaving a sense of despairing emptiness deep inside.
But neither force revealing its nature until a bite of the apple is taken and swallowed.  Sort of resembles being the King's official food taster.  The ups are wonderful and the down days are deadly. Either one, spiritual or egotistical have myriad sets of consequences that seems to need endless amounts of unraveling and that can consume even the most seasoned traveler on the path.
Discernment Is What Is Called For
But how do I do it myself?  Well 'you' don't.  You do it in conjunction with someone or something.
If you are like me, you do take time to speak with a Higher Power but the secret is when you take the time to speak with your Higher Power - share, yes I know it is a strange concept but actually share. It can be done quietly in your head or sometimes I do it in the middle of traffic.    Sometimes sitting lone or laying awake late at night, just thinking about things.  Having a deep desire not to be alone, as my wife sleeps and breathes deeply beside me, ever present but deeply involved in being who she is in that moment and ever so removed from me all at the same time as her body rests against mine.  So, I reach out in my mind and from my heart and share with the 'Great Unknown' a few moments about my day or my wishes or my wants or about what I think I need or what I did or what was funny or what was not.
Sometimes it's just about my day, no big deal.
Sometimes it is the great prayer of desperation,
If only 'You'd' save me from . . . fill in the blank . . . than I'd do . . . fill in the blank . . . I promise'.
Sometimes it is just me simply sharing what it was like to be me today or what happened during my day and every now and then it is me asking what the Creator wants me to do for Him.  Imagine that, I asked if I could be of service.
Coming to terms with accepting that there might be a Higher Power in my life took some time for me to get past, considering my first experiences with a Higher Power parents.
Once on the other side of that psychological and spiritual ridge I could see that they were just like me, working as best they could with what they thought they had, but baffled by the signposts and benchmarks just as I am.  When I saw this, I could accept a Higher Power into my life.  Now I never said that He, She or It was not there all along, what I said was, that I could accept It as being there in my life.
This is about where I'd like to pick up the idea I like to call True Confessions of a Therapist or Observations and Conversations on the passage of time, with Me, Myself and God. 
"Experience has taught us2" also flows from this thought.
The ideas and thoughts are simply outlines of and for deeper experiences, some by me but mostly by others. Not every one of these passages moves a person in the same fashion or the same direction.
What I have learned is that only we can create those supposed mystic, deeper experiences for ourselves.  We do this as we begin the exploration of our newly discovered 'truth'.  And that process of exploring more deeply into our newfound truths, in and of itself, creates more experience deeper subjective expressions and then those outcomes create more affects and so on and so on.  It is really a proactive chain of events that requires only one thing.  You and I get off our collective ass-ends and doing something for ourselves.  Just, me for me and with my God, us working together, as I have come to know Him, Her or It.
It seems to be how each individual spiritual path is built.  It seems to be there for the building.  The idea seems to be 'trusting' that it needs to be built and the journey taken.  That is all it takes, just a little faith.  Mustard seed size actually. One thought or experience leads to another and to another and another.  It's like following the jellybeans and eventually you'll arrive at a place called 'different'.
I have come to notice that the various outcomes of my endeavors have many levels of observation to them but there seems to be a consistency to them that is highly personal.  Here is a collection of those observations I have made about myself, my journey and the affects of my journey on me and others.
There doesn't appear to be a way for me to give someone else what I know. All I can do is help create opportunities whereby they might see "different" for themselves.
When I do attempt to give someone else what I know or what I think I know and then make the fatal mistake of believing I have succeeded in passing on this piece of wisdom, I often discover I have not.  I have often discovered to my own chagrin that by thinking I have succeeded in keeping someone from going through one more private, painful little hell, I haven't.  And the long run always proves me wrong. That can be disheartening at times.  It seems that it is a universal rule that they have to go through that private, painful, little hell for themselves.  It is as if it were necessary, a right of passage, part of the  'deal' of being here, it needed to be done - it seems as simple as that.
The truth of the matter seems to be that each person has to learn 'it' for themselves and usually experience it over and over again before the message is ferreted out and understood at the deepest levels of the psyche .
They seem to be able to do this better when I have stepped out of the shadow of my good-guy helper role and I am just here as facilitator.
It's obvious to me now that many of the problems I have to face in my life are a result of how things were when I was growing up. This seems to be true for just about everybody else too!
It Follows Then, That My Life's Conundrum Is:
I am here spending the rest of my life suffering for personality traits I never really asked for.
Where is the justice in that?
Well, there isn't any is there!
But on the other hand I was never promised justice was I.
It seems that healing, health and a life style are all really the same thing.
They are all simply habits.  Habits that will, one way or another, develop along the way. Learned as actions and/or reactions that should become involuntary or habitual at some point. Habitual and hopefully, be helpful, discerning my life and what to do with it now that I am in the middle of it.
That's The Theory Anyway!
So it seems that there are more complex conundrums to solve as I move deeper into my journey. It seems that I have to overcome my original "involuntaryisms" - habits - the ones that I picked up early in life to save me from a fate that nearly scared me to death.  The ones that helped me originally survive 'til now.  I now carry them with me and use them daily. Actually I trip over them now more then I use them but they are and were the habits that I really trust.
Here is the problem, these habits are the 'grandchildren' of those habits I used to survive in the face of overwhelming evidence that I either wouldn't survive the next few moments or shouldn't have survived those few moments but I did.  These 'grandchildren' of my survival traits are all cloaked in a strange aura that seems so inviting and strangely familiar but I am learning that they are dangerous.  They seem to only work best in my mind.
What I am coming to learn is that when I do attempt to put those old habits into practice in reality they hurt, and cause pain for both others and me.
But they are so familiar, and they are my habit.
One wise soul liken this situation to the person walking around with the Kick Me sign hooked unbeknownst to them on their backside.  Eventually one awakens to the fact that what they are doing must change, must go and they have to come to a place of understanding that what they learned 20 or 40 years ago is not what will work now.  Then be prepared to work very hard at creating 'new and different'.  Be prepared to make mistake after mistake and then work very hard at staying put in this new place in their consciousness that they created.
To do this they need to be in a place to appreciate that they might just have to come out of hiding and take risks and learn how to trust someone other then themselves.

Neil, Victoria summer 1999

Friday, August 30, 2013


You have relied on yourself to find your mates and partners.  The days of arranged marriages etc are over.  We take what we get or so we think.  There is a place deep inside each of us that wants to guide you in your search for the ideal mate, someone who will both resemble your caretakers and compensate for the repressed parts of yourself.  You … like every one else has relied on self and the thought of freedom of choice to handle this aspect or better said relied on an unconscious image of the ... opposite sex or the ideal work mate or ... something you had been forming since birth.  This is called the Imago ... Latin term for 'image.'
The Concept of the Imago: It is for all practical purposes, a composite picture of the people who influenced you most strongly at an early age.  This may have been your mother and father, siblings, or maybe a babysitter or close relative. But whoever they were, they were, a part of your experience and your brain recorded everything about them … the sound of their voices, the amount of time they took to answer your cries, the colour of their skin when they got angry, the way they smiled when they were happy, the set of their shoulders, the way they moved their bodies, their characteristic moods, their talents and interests.  Along with these impressions your brain recorded all your significant interactions with them.  Here is the important part … your brain didn't interpret this data; it simply etched them onto a template.
It may seem improbable that you have such a detailed record of your caretakers somewhere inside your head when you have only a dim recollection of those early years.  In fact, many people have a hard time remembering anything that happened to them before the age of five or six … even dramatic events that should have made a deep impression. 
At this point in our discussion of partnering, we have a more complete understanding of the mystery of attraction.  To the biological theory and the exchange theory and the persona theory and family systems dynamics I have added the idea of the unconscious search for a person who matches our imago. 
Our motivation for seeking an Imago Match is our urgent desire to heal childhood wounds.

 We also have new insight into conflict: if the primary reason we select our mates is that they resemble our caretakers, it is inevitable that they are going to reinjure some very sensitive wounds.  When we sink into this quag­mire of pain and confusion called "the power struggle."

Friday, September 14, 2012

The 7R's of Life

The 7R's of life: Rules, Roles, Relationships, Responsibilities, Respect, Resources and Returning Cycles.
1) Rules
Rules are a specific body(s) of information … sometimes described as guidelines … that we as a group choose to live by.  These guidelines serve as the foundation for governing our living together. These rules can outline very complex international issues … these issues can differ dramatically between various societies … everything from traffic laws, criminal laws and the comings and goings of the social services safety net … to educational systems and a myriad number of variations on a theme … falling under categories such as social custom or common law … codes of conduct etc. 
History and simple necessity are often the originators of most social and interpersonal rules. Community or social rules are the vehicles through which we can begin the task of fulfilling our needs … for food, shelter and clothing, … Maslow and his triangle … as well as set into motion a safety element or environment within the social structure where an individual may from the sanctity from within the construct of the created social zone begin to search out love and acceptance and move up the socialization triangle to higher orders of completion. 
These Chosen Rules can set our direction and define our responsibilities to ourselves and with those that we share the system with…

2) Roles

o   Roles relate to the many “jobs or masks” we wear within the family and our community. 
o   Roles are often determined according to our community or family needs. 
o   Please Note: just because it is what the family needs does not make it healthy.
o   The healthy roles we play provide us with our opportunities for learning and growth. 
o   Roles can be channels for expressing the truth about our needs and ourselves.  BUT…
o   The problem in the system seems to be that we were trained to be who we think we are. All this learning happened at a very early age. This training, often as not, contributes to the predetermination of the Roles we will adopt in our life and display in our community as we advance toward our adulthood.  It has a circular theme … what was learned in childhood is how we will be in Adulthood.
o   Our childhood training often demands that we give up true self. It is basically a defense strategy. We do this for the sake of the system and its survival … not ours necessarily.  We adapt a grab and run technique for our needs fulfillment.  This is referred to as narcissistic depravation
Thus we cannot nurture our lost self unless we leave home at least figuratively.  Some of us have to break ties altogether … literally. 
We leave home by giving up the role that our system demanded we be … for the good of the system …  the scripts and rigid unhealthy roles
These scripts defined us by what the system needed and not as us as an individual. 
This process of giving ourselves up for the greater need of the system denied us our authenticity, our sense of self and our sense of self-esteem.  Each of us adhered to these rigid roles out of our misplaced loyalty to the system we were born into.  The odd thing is that we got a sense of power and of being in control from doing this, but this entire process cost us dearly. To adhere to the rigid role(s) we had to give over our sense of uniqueness, our sense of self, and the essence of being … just to maintain membership in the system.
We were born to be ourselves.  Truer words were never spoken.
3) Relationships
Relationships deal with the nature and quality of our interactions … us with us and us with others … but first us with ourselves.
To form a relationship we must first be able to relate and understand how to set the relating process in motion. 
Our comprehension of how relationships work (or don’t) lay at the feet of our parents ... those persons who parented us, Mom’s relationship with herself and dad’s relationship with himself and their relationship with each other lays the ground work for our understanding of how relationships work or don’t work.  Once this is appreciated or imprinted or impressed on us it then plays like a message on a tape recorder … over and over again.  There are variances that are explained by personality and other outside influences but basically the parents and their interactions set us in motion on how we will conduct ourselves during our adult relationships. 
To get to the root of the problem it is essential to plumb the depths of our own psyche and our own past … to release those lost and buried hurts and pains … then to grieve the losses we experienced.
4) Responsibilities
Responsibilities in one sense refers to the level of maturity we have reached, or how we handle ourselves both privately and publicly, and more importantly how we handle getting our needs met … especially our dependency needs. 
Our inter play with other people, and the roles we choose to fill in the interacting process with them are simply expressions of our sense of our ability to fill our own needs through inter play with them. 
Often as not, responsibility appears to have something to do with providing inspiration or leadership to all who come into our spheres of influence.
M Scott Peck pointed out: Life is what happens to you while you are busy doing something else.   Assuming the working definition of responsibility is a commitment to being involved … you with your life … in a complete, full and healthy fashion … thus being able to fulfill the ways of satisfying your own needs … it helps to understand the difference between Wants and Needs.
This is an essential aspect.

5) Respect
This starts with an individual’s Sense of Self. That Sense of Self is a by-product of early child developmental experiences. 
Sense of Self/Self Assurance has its clearest defining qualities rooted directly in the time spent and how it was spent with the early care givers … those people who reflected how the child was viewed during the child’s first 30 to 60 months of life. 

It Is True That:

It is a necessity that we must first have respect for ourselves … it then follows naturally … that we will have respect for the rules we chose to live by … those we agree to … and conduct our living accordingly and build our social order around. 
On the other hand if we do not have this Sense of Self Respect instilled at a very early age then ... it is with great effort and difficulty that we will move through our lives (seemingly) constantly at odds with our surroundings
Respect is something that is purely experiential (subjective) … it can be obtained anytime … First we must know what we are looking for …  then … where to look for it.  12 Step programs are one of those places to look. Another is a properly laid out therapy program. The book Iron John asks the question “Where is the Key hidden”.
One of life’s conundrums: Sooner or later we get ourselves involved in attempting to make something happen in our lives that we view as very necessary. The problem with the attempt is that a necessary ingredient for making things happen is missing. We need to respect ourselves. If that is missing then our attempts are doomed to fail.  The necessary tools are missing. The business of recovery is the acquisition of those missing tools for life. Life is difficult; that much is true, but with tools of self respect and self esteem on hand, the job at hand will not be “an impossibility” any longer. 
The Basics of the concept is
People cannot respect themselves unless they know the truth about what happened to them.
For most of us, the truth of who we are is lost back in the early beginnings of our life. There were times and circumstances where we simply had to pretend to be someone else just to maintain our membership in our families of origin ... It is also very true that our every effort to maintain the family lie is a painful thing to do. The problem is, every time we build a (neurotic) defense strategy to protect us from a world that seems to want to destroy us, our defense strategy becomes more painful than the pain we were masking. Thus, if this is our only defense against our pain then we will build another neurotic structure … mask … false self … to protect us from the next level of our pain and that becomes a repeating pattern until we have no idea who we really are. Finding our lost self-respect is a prerequisite to healing.  Something a kin to Peter Pan recovering his lost shadow from Wendy’s drawer.  Now we have a place to look … and a direction to go in.
6) Resources
They are available to us on many levels.  Help will only help if you reach out for it.  It is necessary that you participate and utilize them … put them to work for you … it is your entitlement … they won’t work unless you work them.  I quote John Bradshaw from Healing the Shame that Binds You:
...methods have been adapted from the major schools of therapy.  Most all therapies attempt to make that which is covert and unconscious, overt and conscious. These techniques can only be mastered by practice.  You must do them, and reinforce them by doing them again.  They will work only if you work them.

Appreciating Compliance & Surrender

Compliance is motivated by guilt.  That is, I will make every effort to appear to be doing what I need to do while I resist doing the doing. Compliance is in fact an attempt to surrender without giving up control.  It is the attempt to appear to be doing the necessary without actually doing it.
An interesting fact that I had to learn the hard way was: denial and delusion can continue in spite of the acknowledgment of guilt.  Guilt can actually be a way to distract one from the real problem(s); feeling guilty about what I didn’t do ... is actually mood altering and we can be just as hooked on the guilt as we can on any other substance or actions.  Many of us need a fix of guilt periodically and will screw up in some major fashion just so that we can have a reason in the here & now that explains our feelings rather than the real reason that lay lost in our history.
Please Note: Compliance and guilt are ways that a codependent has hoodwinked many an unwary partner, spouse, parent, sibling, therapist or friend.
Some shame-based people tend to seek out and even embrace punishment.  Admitting guilt and paying for it enhances the denial of what they fear most deeply - quitting doing ...  fill in the blank. To have quit whatever it was ... fill in the blank ... then the individual would have to admit that his or her life was out of control ... thus by admitting that, they are exposed as a flawed and defective human being.  No one willingly wants to have their face ground down into their shame or pain … the conundrum of the whole thing is that the only way out of the compulsive/addictive shame cycle is to embrace the shame ... not ignore it or pretend it does not exist.

Surrender: is motivated by the acceptance of shame.  For a codependent, surrender is the first true act of freedom since beginning their recovery attempt.  It is best embodied in the following:

Talking about our problems, mapping out our family’s dysfunction is not the same as taking action.  Action means that I've let go of control and I'm willing to listen to someone else and do it his way, rather than my own way.
7) Returning Cycle
It is actually ... I suspect ... a universal law that helps maintain the balance of the universe. The truth of the matter is; most of us have never really noticed this phenomenon before.  We were all just too busy just trying to get from A to B. The process of returning cycles involves the process of giving and receiving. 
o   We get from life what we freely give.  But first we must give. The key word there is freely. Many of us have had to give and give and give ... but it was done under duress ... and chaos and duress becomes our way of things.
o   Or we reap what we sow; it is not always apparent ... but sooner or later it comes around. Sometimes it bites us ... and sometimes it seems to reward us ... but its’ necessity will always come around.
o   But then we have to give it back to life. We don’t own it ... its’ not ours ... it is something we got from life and it has its own place in The Greater Way of Things but it is not ours to own. We may think it is ours but ... we only get to use it for an undetermined period of time then we must give it back. There is no real choice in the matter ... that is simply how it works. But we are working within a time frame that is defined by eternity.
o   We must give back what we received ... that is a primary part of the law ... again but, this is where we do have a choice ... for the grace of being ourselves, we add just a little of our potential to it as it passes through our hands. It has our character and our talents now attached, then it passes back to the universe. Now it has just the tiniest bit more energy in it, it has our energy. Why do we do this? So we can find our sense of pride and self respect. So we can become a Co Creator with the Creator
Thus, a returning cycle is not a punishment, even though there are many times when it may seem so. In reality it is the restoration of creative energy within our own environment ... This can be at home ... in the office ... at a tea party ... at church ... anywhere where we notice that we actually have the ability to give, because it is always there ... the opportunity to give ... we just don’t notice. Where we don’t have to hide behind our false selves and masks; when we can just be who we were intended to be, that defines life’s purpose. The energy we give back is now enhanced by our effort rather than diluted by our resentment. We Now Have A Choice.  
Effort or Dilution
It was observed many years ago that if mankind lived according to the Principal of Returning Cycles many of the rules and laws of man’s world today would be unnecessary.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wisdom Is Not A Natural Born Thing

Wisdom Is Not A Natural Born Thing
Wisdom is not a natural born thing. It is the result of experience(s) ... but ... wisdom does not necessarily result from all or every experience and it definitely does not appear instantly.  Sometimes experience has to be repeated many times until the deeper aspects can be appreciated in proper light (understatement). But for wisdom to develop as it should it needs to be taken in combination with both properly appreciated experience and serious introspection.
We began to notice that we have never fully met ourselves, or for that matter really understood who we are. Why? Most of us have spent a life time pretending to be somebody other than whom and what we are and we are lost in that process. Again why? Because we have always been encouraged to withdraw away from what was predetermined to be un­pleasant or painful; to label the unpleasant and painful as bad or wrong, then avoid it at all cost; hence Addiction, Compulsion and Obsession. Each of the big three has serious negative consequences and anyone who acts out in them will pay. 
If one is paying close attention they might discover that they are their own Keeper of the Keys. The very attempt to avoid legitimate suffering causes all who attempt avoidance as a defense strategy to step into the loop of becoming their own worst enemy while they are trying to save their ass ends from the worst pain in their life ... they become Keeper Of Their Own Keys and Jailer all at the same time.
I have been told by many, if not by most, who have sorted through all this that opening to their deeper and supposedly darker feelings has allowed them to begin to see what has made life difficult for them. This process of simply having their feelings and seeing their origins allows the individual to begin to come to understand why the pain, why the difficulty. It gives them a path to follow, If Only They Choose. It is possible to begin to comprehend what anger is, what fear is, and more importantly what they are not and most importantly how they actually fit into their lives.
As this all begins to fall into place those old lost feelings will process, and as they do, they will go to their rightful place in memory. That is as good as it gets.

As This Happens  
We Get Our Lives Back 
More Importantly ... We Get Our Souls Back