In Ways That Matter
Arguably, we don’t discuss mental suffering enough in public forums, as stigmas are alive and well related to such issues and we have a tendency to bypass what elicits sensations of discomfort in our bodies. But the issue is getting more and more exposure as more and more people speak about their experiences and give us faces to put on the dis-ease(s) many of us have only heard about. What we don’t hear nearly enough about is how those who live with, love, support and accompany those managing their mental suffering.
The Greatest Terrorist of All
We should know better. As the privileged few on this planet to have our comforts and freedoms. As the surviving few of our lineages. Regardless of our gender, skin colour or religious background, every single one of us, at some point on the historical spectrum, comes from a lineage of persecution. Every single one of […]
In this moment in time, a moment of almost daily terrorist attacks and overpopulation somehow leading to unheard of statistics of isolation and loneliness, we have a responsibility. In a moment in time when women fighting for education and equality in war-torn countries are being raped, tortured and killed for it, in a period […]
I’ve been thinking a lot about how many of the causes of suffering in my life and in the life of those around me are rooted in communication…what we communicate, how we do it, and where we direct it. It seems that so much of what we convey to others passes through a complex system of filters before it pours out into the space we reserve for comunication, but many times, it doesn’t even make it that far. That filtering of information happens when we analyze what we have to share, who we’re sharing it with, and a) what our feelings toward that person are, and b) what that person is dealing with in their daily life. When we have incredibly joyous news to share, we often suppress the degree of that joy if we’re dealing with someone who tends to be pessimistic or sarcastic, and conversely, when we have news that isn’t happy, we tend to keep it to ourselves for fear of imposing on others, afraid that we’ll “bring them down” once the news or information has been shared.
One of the most difficult tasks to overcome as someone conscious of my role in the relationships I’ve fostered throughout my life is working with my ego. We are all born into a world of things we inherently are attracted to and those we shun as we identify them as sources of pleasure or suffering, and it is through that discrimination that we end up with the frame of reference we carry around with us. It is through that frame of reference that we end up processing everything that occurs around us to determine whether we find it pleasing or not, whether we “accept” it or not. And that’s when the ego kicks in. That’s when the judgement occurs, when the separation and duality settles in, keeping me and my true essence separate from the scenarios unfolding around me. It is this exact process that is the root cause of ALL suffering in the world, so it’s no surprise that attacking the ego and the grip it exerts on us on an individual level constantly proves to be nearly insurmountable.
Shit happens. How many times have you heard that? Better yet, how many times have you said it? That used to be my answer to all the conflicts that would pop up in my life, and it was also the advice I would pass onto friends. As far as advice goes, I thought it was pretty concise…bad things happen, and we have to accept that they happen and move on without letting ourselves get caught up in it all. Good advice, no? Well, as I’m blessed to still be living and learning, I’ve recently expanded on that to not only my friends and students, but to myself as well!