When I started this website, it was meant to be a business. However, from the beginning, I think that the real goal was to offer suggestions on how to deal with anxiety, and other feelings that we struggle with. I have stated elsewhere that we all struggle. If you will look under the "more" section of the home page, you will find the beginning of some articles that I intended to sum up the astounding experience and some success that I experienced working five years in a mental health respite program. I still haven't completed this task, and find that the articles are not always clear. For many years I did a Mindfulness group from which much of this evolved, and there were times I sensed that I was on to something, and at times very clear in my presentation. Today I ran across another account of a veteran who had killed himself. In frustration, after pleading with the VA for help, and despite having children that simply could never be enough to rid him of his pain, he pulled the trigger. I am left, in this moment, thinking I could have helped him.
We all suffer. We are less than whole, and on some level feel this deeply. It is the hole that we try to fill. Imagine yourself in the place of this vet. You had been willing to make the greatest sacrifice, if not for your country, for your family and friends. You had the best of intentions, and did the best that you could only to find it going so very wrong. Perhaps you realized along the way that war is never about freedom, or protecting your loved ones, but rather about old men with the power to offer up your life to insure their profit. Maybe this was just too much to wrap your mind around, and then maybe you saw what war is really about. And maybe sitting alone in that car with a round locked and loaded, tears streaming down your cheeks, feeling a pain so deep and devastating as to be intolerable, you could do nothing else.
We can all feel this. Where did it start? As I read through one of the articles this stood out:
" Imagine that you could accept your condition, this tendency toward anxiety, as being vital in your life. I know this is an odd statement. But please, allow yourself to continue to imagine. When I was a small child, about three years old, my mother told me this later, I loved to sing. I don't remember this-it was pre-memory, but she said I would go everywhere singing. Then she said that I just stopped. To this day, you couldn't make me sing. I took that little singing kid, stuck him in a closet somewhere and locked the door. We do that when the significant adult figures in our lives disapprove of something about us. Some of the best and some of the worst things about us, we take and lop them off, stick them in the closet never to be seen again. These are sometimes referred to as shadow parts. We desire to live as whole beings. How can we do this when parts are locked away in the closet? Perhaps our anxiety, in part, is due to this condition. Suppose that difficult thoughts about ourselves, and difficult feelings are related to having parts of ourselves detached and lost. Now, there isn't a real closet somewhere, these parts are lost in our psyche. Is it possible that this idea of accepting our condition is related to finding a way to integrate these parts? Suppose further, that what this means is not resigning yourself to this condition, but rather stepping away from it and learning how to notice your difficult thoughts and feelings without becoming embroiled and entangled in them. This is the difficult thought that I have always had about myself. It is: "It's because you're not blanking good enough anyway." When I screw up, when I let someone down, or don't meet their expectations, I hear it. It is loud, demeaning, very personal, and it swears at me. It would be different if it was like any other thought, a thought about the weather that's in one ear and out the other; not this one, it gets in my head and takes up residence. I can't think straight, I can't see the world around me because I am entangled with this thought as if I were blindfolded."
How does this happen? I don't remember making an agreement with anyone that I would simply amputate parts of myself that other's don't like. But we all do it.
This is all very immature, and childish. Adult children and children ask for and make concessions so that we can all feel comfortable. There is a spiritual picture of man in three stages, the child with this kind of behavior, the maturing adolescent with behavior that begins to take on aspects of evolution, but also vascillates wildly back and forth from child to older being, and finally the "matured" adult. This is the being who has met and recognized the Self, the higher being, the observer part that is the connection with God the creator, the all powerful hand that is Christ Consciousness. The taking of this hand is how we once and for all put an end to the childish play that has been the history of humanity.
Are we divine beings? I believe so. I am not there. I am still trying to grab ahold of that hand.
While working at the Royal Avenue Program, I was introduced to a visualization, the "Inner Wisdom Journey," we called it. I was taught how to do it by Dean Schlecht, a therapist and then program manager. I recall walking into a room with a very broken young man, doing the visualization, and watching as a tear formed in the corner of his eye, rolled down his cheek, and dropped softly onto his chest. He never noticed. He had met his Observer Self, his Inner Wisdom. I don't know if it has made a lasting difference in his life. I simply know that it is the step we all must take.