Recently, like many people alive during these tumultuous times on our beautiful, fragile, resilient planet, I have felt the tug of despair. So many of Earth’s family members are suffering because of extreme weather events and extreme human reactivity. In this atmosphere of frightening instability, I’ve found it tempting to slump into the false belief of my impotence in the face of so many overwhelming challenges. In these moments of fear and discouragement, I forget that I can reach out to others, offer prayers for those whose needs I recognize, or simply read or listen to something that reminds me we are as capable of offering kindness as we are of doing harm. In performing these small but restorative acts, I contribute to the Love, Joy, and Peace that are the antidotes to despair.
Continue reading Story Me Whole: Britt Collins, Mata/Tabor, Michael, and Me
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Chasing the Scream by British journalist Johann Hari deepens our understanding of the causes of and remedies for addiction. The book, published in January of 2015, helps readers to understand why the ‘war on drugs has failed and will continue to fail because resources are focused on punishment of what are essentially health and social justice issues. A pivotal study of rats (more about this later) helps to tell the multi-layered story of addiction’s causes and prompts readers to re-examine why people use drugs. Some believe bad character causes addiction, others that drug addiction is a matter of chemical predisposition. Hari’s findings refute these causes and suggest a radical alternative to punishment, one that includes community, purpose, and a deeper understanding of the needs of the self
Continue reading Chasing the Scream: Seeing Addiction through a Clearer Lens
Throughout my childhood and early adolescence in the nineteen fifties, it seemed almost everyone I knew smoked. My mother, aunt, and eventually my older sister and school contemporaries were lighting up Dumauriers, Rothmans, Kools, or Camels. Boys used cigarettes to foster an aura of coolness, hoping to emulate James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause. Girls often used cigarettes to suppress their appetites to achieve the lean boyish look that would eventually peak with Twiggy, the wide-eyed, androgynous teen model who burst onto the Mod style scene in the mid-sixties.
Continue reading Addiction, Grief, and EFT