Guilt, How To Indentify And Get Rid Of It.

May 27, 2010 by  
Filed under Blog

love-sick1There are different types of guilt.  There is “healthy guilt” where we have done something wrong, we recognize having done something wrong and so we move to apology and fixing, if possible.  We learn from the experience and we move on without making our wrong action define who we are.

There is the bashing guilt and there is no reason for it as it is a completely useless feeling.

So what is this “bashing guilt”?  That’s when we feel we are bad people and only do awful things.  That’s when we talk to ourselves or about ourselves in ways we would never imagine talking about others.  It’s self-hatred and we feel we must punish ourselves.  So we become our own executioners by beating ourselves up with negative thoughts like: “Everything I do is wrong.  I am a loser, a reject”.  Now how could that be of service to our growth and well being?

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The Human Mind

November 18, 2009 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

I had lunch the other day with a fellow who held a rather dim view of the process of psychotherapy. He referred to its methodology as “hideously inefficient”, while granting that it actually served some valid purpose. A severe case of damning with faint praise. My somewhat defensive response ( I am currently in therapy myself, and there was also a friend present who is a therapist herself ) was that the hideous inefficiency of the process lies mostly within the human mind itself. I thought I was just trying to come up a clever response (which I was ), but it also strikes me that there is something to the idea. After all, the problems that plague the mind don’t lend themselves to fixes that are both quick and lasting. The quick ones, such as mind-altering substances, don’t last, whereas the array of options that hold out the possibility for real growth and transformation are invariably arduous and plodding in nature.

We were on a lunch break from a daylong Buddhist meditation retreat and the comment got me thinking about the innumerable lifetimes the Buddhists speak of in describing the journey toward enlightenment. I wonder whether this fellow has gauged the efficiency of a path that measures progress not in years but in lifetimes. Whether one takes this terminology literally or figuratively it does point to the laborious, lengthy and difficult task of reconfiguring the human mind in a way that accords consistently with a happy state.

The persistence of any of these algorithms or systems – the numerous forms of modern psychotherapy, as well as the variety of ancient spiritual disciplines – that are aimed at the problems of the human mind, points to the fact that human existence is plagued by a set of stubborn problems that simply won’t fade quietly away. The mind seems to be very good at solving an almost unlimited array of worldly problems with great efficiency. However, when it comes to resolving the thorny problems that beset its own nature, it keeps falling down on the job. Which isn’t really a problem at all, so long as we keep on getting up.


Love Lesson

June 20, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

Today I’m thinking about my husband more than usual. 

His white, scaly skin of the end, his scars crossing his chest and stomach every which way, his wrinkled tired face, his puffy eyes, bold head and his incredible desire to live.

My August 15th call to 911 was my last call to them.  The paramedics carried him out at 6am and unlike other times I knew he wasn’t coming home.  

At the very end, I laid down next to him in bed while his brother and sister helped me stay there and not fall off.  Till the very end we were together, my husband and I. How beautiful is that?

Yesterday I wrote about being positive, of overcoming obstacles, today I write about my very vivid memories of my husband’s last hours and both the sadness and the positive are me.  

I think again about that Caetano song and its chorus “You didn’t teach me how to forget you; you only taught me how to love you.”

I also think about an article I read a couple of days ago, that I wished I could remember where I had read it, that said most people consider adversity as unusual times and the calm periods as the normal periods of life.  The article’s writer, who is either a psychiatrist a therapist of something like that, was trying to make a point that the calm periods of life are actually the abnormal times and that adversity is what life is really about.

I’m not sure of his point yet but I keep thinking about it.  So I believe in some level it rings true to me. 

After my husband passed I kept thinking that life was going to give me some time off, but that certainly has not been the case, I continue to be bombarded with all types of problems.  As I am a funny person I tell my friends “there is no rest for the wicked”.

I will keep thinking about the therapist/psychiatrists’ words looking for its truth or lack of but for now I want to thank my husband for teaching me how to love him and to never trying to teach me how to forget him but mostly for teaching me how to keep going.