Here’s To A New Era Of Being And Living

March 1, 2011 by  
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Angie Rubin Photo

James Hillman — psychologist, scholar, culture critic, and author of more than 20 books, including the bestselling “The Soul’s Code” — is one of the modern era’s most original thinkers on the human and collective psyche.

On an interview by Pythia  Peay posted on the Huffington Post a couple of days ago, Hillman discusses a new era of being and living that is bubbling underneath the old and failed post-modern models.

Living in America we get to experience the extreme of some of these crumpling structures; capitalism and the end of this country’s notion of exceptionalism.

There is no doubt the world as we know it has come to an end a new model will emerge.  What is different about this new model is that it will challenge us to live life as a circular experience not as a staircase model – inflexible hierarchy.

How does that impact us at an individual level?  Absolute truths are being challenged such as: If you are rich you are happy.  Power brings sense of worth.  Freedom means only the ability to say and go anywhere I want.

If you are reading this, is because you too are in search of a new way of being.  You have tried making the money, being powerful, exercising your strength over others, and failing with each attempt to truly find meaning and freedom.

I recently saw a live performance written and directed by Moisés Kaufman – 33 Variations – where the character played by Jane Fonda is suffering from Lou Gehrig.  Towards the end she says there is great freedom in the loss of hope.  That statement really stayed with me.  While it sounds like a downer at first sight if you delve into the deeper meaning you will find truth; the freedom that comes with turning our attention to the world within.   Like a tree finding truth in the roots and not in the branches.

Please read on…

Now approaching his 85th birthday, I spoke with Hillman as he was recuperating from two years of illness. “It’s a new life,” he told me. “A lot of reflection instead of ambition.” The American psyche has always stoked Hillman’s reflections; the following is the second half of an edited version of our conversation on the current zeitgeist.

Pythia: In our initial conversation you said that America today has a certain “tragic aspect.” Can you say more about that?…Continued

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Can We Change?

February 24, 2011 by  
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For the last couple of weeks the topic “we are who we are” has been very much on my mind.  Using myself as the basis for my thinking I wondered how many of the changes that have taken place in my process and behavior belong to age and how many to an investment in my own development.  Followed by the question am I still the same girl who grew up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil just older and wiser?

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A Child’s Affirmation – A Must See

May 23, 2010 by  
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If you ever wondered what joy is, watch this video. Priceless.

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My Friend

May 11, 2010 by  
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I was just looking at a friend’s pictures on Facebook.  I have known this friend for a long time.  I knew him when he was a single man and I now know him as a man married to a divorced woman and a mother of four.

He thought he would have kids with her, but that was not meant to be.  What was meant to be was him raising the four children of his wife and another man.

He often complains about him not having children of his own and of having to raise someone else’s children.  But when I look at his pictures, I see a happy man. Whoever gave birth to these children is not important.  What I see is a man who has found a family, a place and a world of his own.  But he doesn’t want to let go of his pre-conceived ideas of what his life should look like.  So he struggles between what it is and his fantasy.  But I know he is happy.  But he can’t see it and that is his loss.  And so he feels cheated.

When I think of him my heart aches because I see his misguided unhappiness.  He has all that he wants but he doesn’t see it.  How many times have each one of us not seen the gifts life has brought us until they were gone?  Let’s not do that.  Let’s see what we have TODAY and let’s cherish it.

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PBS’s ‘This Emotional Life’: Now Is The Moment To Hold Your Child

May 9, 2010 by  
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A beautiful post by Catherine Connors about living life, loving and receiving love to its fullest

Catherine Connors

Some nights, I curl up in bed with my little girl. She lays her head against my arm and grips my fingers with her tiny hand and whispers, I want you to stay here with me, Mommy.

Yes, I say. I want you to stay here with me, too.

And then I rest my cheek against the crown of her head and close my eyes and inhale the sweet, soapy smell of baby shampoo, feel the silk of her hair, listen to the whisper of her breath and I think, I want you to stay here, like this, always, curled against me, warm, safe. And I think, I want you to stay here, like this, for years and years to come, until the days when you and I no longer fit together in this wee bed, when you are grown and I am old and your arms are the stronger. When we will still find comfort in each other. When you will still be my baby, only grown.

I think these things, and I look up at the clock atop her dresser and watch as the minute hand takes one deliberate click forward. I look up at the clock and I wonder, how would it feel if I were counting these minutes? These hours? These days?

I pull her closer to me, as close as I can bring her. It is not possible to hold a child too close, I think, or for too long.

My family is losing a child. My nephew, Tanner, is dying. He has Duchenne’s Muscular Dystrophy, and his death is inevitable: He will die young and our hearts will break and there is nothing that we can do to stop this. It’s a slow but an inevitable loss; the hands of the clock tick forward slowly, deliberately, inexorably. We count on those hands ticking slowly; we measure their movements carefully, reassuring ourselves that the pace holds steady, that there is no leap forward, that this particular clock never advances an unnecessary hour, that our days hold ample daylight. It’s a slow loss, but an inevitable one.

We are better off, of course, for the trickling pace of this loss. We have many days, many hours, with this child. Not near as many as we would like, but still: we have time to spend and cherish, time to postpone our goodbyes and to pretend that their place on the horizon will hold its distance. My sister can wrap her body around Tanner’s and feel the beat of his heart and the warmth of his breath; she can brush her hand across his forehead and whisper in his ear and assert her love for him in the now and know, as surely as his hand tightens around hers, that he hears her, that he knows. But the clock ticks over her head – over his – and she counts these hours, these minutes, these seconds. Every movement of the minute-hand is a movement lost, a moment lost, one minute less in a cherished life that is measured by the clock.

This is why I hold my children so tightly, so often. Why I cling to them and let them cling to me and why I never, ever resist their embrace; this is why I have done this since they were born, and will do this until they pull away from me: because I do not know how many days, hours, minutes that I have with them. Because I have only now to experience them as attached to me. Because that attachment is so precious, and because I will only be able to sustain the memory of it, once it’s gone, if I let it flourish now. Because enjoying that attachment – insisting upon that attachment – goes so far to helping me keep my fear in check, to keeping me sane. They say that attachment is good for infants, that a strong physical and emotional bond between parent and child does so much to boost that child’s well-being. It is also vital to us, to parents, who need the bonding nearly as much as do our children. Perhaps more. We need it to keep us rooted, to keep us grounded, to protect us from the worst currents of our fear. We need it to insulate us from the worst effects of anxiety and uncertainty, to remind us of why we do this and why we love this, through the best of times and the worst of times and every moment in between…Continued

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With No One To Protect Them

March 21, 2010 by  
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I just came across this video. It is hard to watch but it is the truth of the world we live in. We forget how privilege we are to live in this country and as we seek happiness in all the gadgets in the world we find emptiness. Maybe reaching out and bringing a smile to a hurt face might. Happiness means meaningful acts towards ourselves and others.

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Gold Wrapping Paper

February 21, 2010 by  
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The story goes that some time ago a mother punished her five year old daughter for wasting a roll of expensive gold wrapping paper. Money was tight and she became even more upset when the child used the gold paper to decorate a box to put under the Christmas tree.

Nevertheless, the little girl brought the gift box to her mother the next morning and then said, ‘This is for you, Momma.’

The mother was embarrassed by her earlier over reaction, but her anger flared again when she opened the box and found it was empty. She spoke to her daughter in a harsh manner.

‘Don’t you know, young lady, when you give someone a present there’s supposed to be something  inside the package?’

She had tears in her eyes and said, ‘Oh, Momma, it’s not empty! I blew kisses into it until it was full.’

The mother was crushed. She fell on her knees and put her arms around her little girl, and she begged her forgiveness for her thoughtless anger.

An accident took the life of the child only a short time later, and it is told that the mother kept that gold box by her bed for all the years of her life.

Whenever she was discouraged or faced difficult problems she would open the box and take out an imaginary kiss and remember the love of the child who had put it there.

In a very real sense, each of us, as human beings, have been given a Golden box filled with unconditional love  and kisses from our children, family, friends  There is no more precious  possession anyone could hold.

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