One of the most liberating and happiness-generating beliefs that one can have is to believe in the perfection of everyone around. Not only is Mother Teresa perfect, but so are Saddam Hussein and all those in between. "Sure, sure, another bit of semantics or idealistic intellectualism," I hear you respond. Not at all.
My unhappy thinking patterns, my unhappy emotional responses, my couch-potato body, my lousy relationships and all the rest of my symptoms are perfect. I gained each one of them precisely (albeit unconsciously) in response to events in my past. If I was traumatized to give up my anger, grief, love and sexuality, then I needed to give them up in order to get the maximum acceptance (or minimum punishment) in my childhood. If I still don't have them, (anger, grief and so on), then so far it has not been safe for me to regain them. I continue to need my defenses against those dangerous (to my neurotic adaptive personality) feelings. Therefore, every symptom is perfect; it is needed right now. Genuine belief in this perfection can lead to real acceptance of oneself and others.
I can then hear you say, "But if I accept that symptom, I won't want to change it, or I won't be as energetic in trying to change it." Not true. What will happen is that by truly accepting its perfection, then you will stop the self-recriminations, the low self-esteem and the negative judgments, none of which do anything but slow you down and impede progress towards making the changes which are best for you. You may often wind up worrying about the future or ruminating about the past if you do not accept the perfection of you and me and everyone else. By accepting a symptom as perfect and still wanting it to be different, then the next step for you usually becomes obvious.
"But I still want my symptom to be gone, and when I don't get what I want I get unhappy," I hear you respond. Read on.
© 2008 by Thayer White
Finding Your Soul in the Spirituality Maze
|Excerpt from Be Your Own Therapist: " Most bodywork therapies attempt gently or more forcefully (ask any potential practitioners whether their methods are gentle or more forceful) to change your body by physical manipulation in the direction of enhanced well-being and wholeness. This manipulation is an attempt to eliminate physical and/or psychological problems that manifest in the body as stiffness, dullness, coolness, misalignment, lifelessness or muscle knots."|