My mind shapes my life. It is my control room, the place from which I navigate the waters of my world. My thoughts have dynamic power. If radio waves can travel on air waves, then surely my thoughts do, too. What I accept as my reality within my mind exists in living particles and may eventually manifest and evidence itself in my world. My mind is a living part of the universe. It is programmed in, made of the same stuff and designed to operate in this context. The stuff of my mind is the stuff of this living world. What I think is my contribution; it is felt by others, it has impact on my world. I change my life first by changing my thoughts. I contribute positively to society when I carry positive thoughts toward and about it.
I am responsible for what lives inside my mind
All that is comes from the mind; it is based on the mind; it is fashioned by the mind.
The Pali Canon
I have been working the addiction field long enough to see both the commonalities of my clients and the vast difference and individualities of each one. One of the leading experts in trauma and addiction therapy, Robert Weiss LCSW, CSAT-S, authored clinical vignettes summarizing the most common ways people develop an out-of-balance relationship with themselves that includes sexuality issues. I really liked these because they not only include the challenges faced, but also the most common route to help. Take a look…do you recognize any of these people?
Always Ready: Gary Gay ‘Pride’
The Double Life: Successful Steve
Sex on the Brain: Porn-Obsessed Paul
How to Decide, Wife or Mistress: Frank the Philanderer
All the Wrong Places: Professional Pete
No Limits: Reputation Ronald
Trauma Survivor: Sammy Sleaze
Dying for Love: Lucy the Love Addict
Risky Business: Dora Danger Girl
The Horny Housewife: Suzy Soccer Mom
The Empty Nest: Connie Cougar
All or Nothing: Betty Binger
13th Step: Rita Relapser
Bad Boys: Penny the Party Girl
Over the Borderline: Narcissist Nancy
NOTE: While I identify with these descriptions, none of the content here is mine or is taken from actual client data, nor is similarity to any of the profiles here a diagnosis of any kind. The information posted here is purely for educational purposes. For a confidential assessment in the Bay Area, contact me.
I am a container of soul energy; as much as the sun, the leaves and the flowers, I, too, grow and express life. Nature lives within me and I within nature. Soul is inseparable from life and I am a part of life. There is nothing in this universe that is not alive and teeming with neurons. There is no state of non-life, only a state of shutdown. I can choose not to experience life, but life will go on being alive nonetheless. Experiencing it is a subtle shift, a letting in, the opening of an inner door. There is a world within me waiting to be experienced. Today I will allow myself to open to the door and say yes.
I experience a subtle shift within me.
And are those your songs that are echoing in the dark caves of my being? Who but you can hear the hum of the crowded hours that sounds in my veins to-day, the glad steps that dance in my breast, the clamour of the restless life beating its wings in my body?
Sometimes I see life as holding only a limited amount of satisfying activities. I feel that if I do not do them all in the same month, gobble them all down in the same year, they will be gone. Living a day at a time sees that I cannot be in two places at once. Setting priorities or doing only the amount of activity that is comfortable has no bearing on what will be available in the future. All that it really means is that by the time the future comes, I will be able to be in it in the same way I am in the present, that I will not have burnt myself out with anxiety, worry and unnecessary stress. All I can really live in is this moment. If I miss it, it will be gone; it will have meant nothing. If I live it, it can give me all the life contained within it and I will have it as a feeling memory to carry within me. I can only be here now – a flight from the moment is a flight from myself.
I live one day at a time.
Every creative act requires elimination and simplification. Simplification results from a realization of what is essential.
Soulmaking and Suffering
Suffering purifies the soul. Working through problems is painful and confusing but allows me to use life circumstances as part of my path toward soul; grist for the mill of soulmaking. Running away from or not fully processing and reintegrating suffering is running away from my full self. Parts of me will be left behind, encased in an unfelt moment of my life, unattended to, frozen and hardened. This frozenness will block the soul until such time when I am willing to thaw out, to relax and let be what will be, to pass through the eye of the needle. There is a truth and an honesty to real suffering that allows me to return to myself, to restore my insides. My willingness to suffer means that I can grow and expand because I am not leaving important aspects of myself untouched and unseen. When I am willing to feel the pain, I inherit the joy.
I need not be a stranger to suffering.
Call the world if you please, the veil of soulmaking.
I will worship the divine nature of life. Life and beauty show themselves to me all the time. I see evidence of God every time I turn my head or look within the magnificence of my own soul. All the hours of my day are opportunities to experience soul at work in the world. In fact, this is where I wish to learn to identify soul – in an uncommon/common gesture from someone, in the play of a child, in the kindness of another person. Today I will look for opportunities to notice soul energy in the circumstances that surround me, and I will create opportunities to let the soul within me express itself.
Worship is an everyday thing.
Some keep the Sabbath going to Church –
I keep it, staying at home – to Church –
With a Bobolink for a chorister –
And an orchard, for a dome –
… so instead of getting to Heaven, at last –
I’m going, all along.
The Balanced Moment
Today I look for balance in my thinking and my living. Soul is present in the balanced moment. I do not need to look for soul experience in every hot and promising gimmick. Why should I look outside myself for something that exists within me? Why should I continually set myself up for disappointment by giving away my power, by assigning more meaning and life to the promise of a future experience than to the actual experience that I am engaged in right now? Soul is present in me, it is made manifest through me. I will be still and wait for the experience of soul.
I trust soul’s presence within me.
Anything carried to an extreme kills itself by being clever and promising magic. In man’s effort to understand man, it is foolhardy to look for the complete answer. It does not exist. A new religion comes over the horizon every year and promises salvation to those who would believe… I see change as a point that one strives toward but never gets to.
Thomas F. Fogarty, M.D.
Meditation in Action
I will allow myself to have a simple relationship with activities, so that they may become a meditation in action. When thoughts arise throughout this process that seem to be demanding my attention, rather than give them attention and energy, I will not further feed them; instead, I will allow them to pass by, simply observing them and letting them go. I will try to get a sense of the transparent quality of thought and action in my life. I live from a deep place within me. I take an action but I am not the action. I have a thought but I am not the thought. I am something deeper and more constant.
I am aligned with an invisible life force.
The joy inherent in simplicity… here is not pleasurable
in the ordinary sense but is an ultimate and fundamental
sense of freedom… therefore, the attitude one
brings to meditation practice should be very simple, not
based upon trying to collect pleasure or avoid pain.
Rather, meditation is a natural process, working on the
material of pain and pleasure as the path.
Practicing detachment is a way to gain perspective on my affairs in life, so that they do not have the power to absorb and run me. Compulsiveness can be seen as an inability to view thought with any level of detachment – a compulsive relationship with my own inner processes. Detachment allows me to be with myself rather than lose myself in every thought that passes through my mind. Practicing detachment helps me to set inner boundaries. When my energy flows willy-nilly into every issue, the energy is no longer under my command but belongs to the thought that has taken it over. Boundaries start from within. Not becoming lost or taken over by my own thoughts is the beginning of setting personal boundaries. I will keep my mind and life clear and centered so that I know from within when I have gone too far.
I am centered from within.
Nowhere can a man find a quieter or more untroubled retreat than in his own soul.
When I become aware of destructive behavior patterns, they can serve a wonderful purpose: I can use them as indicators of where my inner work lies. Any situation to which I have a constant over-reaction is telling me something about myself that I need to listen to. My first task is to realize that the reaction is not fitting the circumstance, then to sit with that realization, and see through association where it takes me. No one knows my history better than I do, if I allow myself to know it.
When I make the decision to come into conscious awareness, to find meaning in my life experience, I begin to experience my life as an adventure – my adventure. When I can raise the source of the unwanted pattern to consciousness to better understand where my pain or reaction stems from, I can begin to see it for what it is and let it go. Then I am no longer repeating history, I am making it.
I co-create my world.
The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely.