Tag Archive: Healing


Hangin’ Out With the King of Swing

That’s Krishna Das.  Played the Album, ‘Heart Full Of Soul’, got singing with the last two or three and wished I had started before.  Went on to put ‘Blues For Baba’ on a loop, thought I’d better take it off because I might be driving people mad but it was nice for me to have it on and do stuff with it.  Put the ‘Om Shri Matre Namah’ mantra on which I think is part of a free package on krishnadas.com these days (I had to pay for it.  I swear they were teasing me with the timing that they made it free!).  It is Krishna Das without music chanting Om Shri Matre Namah 108 times.  Only played a bit of that then decided to swap to ‘Namoh’ on ‘Trust In The Heart’ and was jamming to that and now it has moved on to other tracks on the album.  Loving jamming to KD this evening.  And I’ve heard some people here say they like my singing so that makes me feel good, too.  Let’s put some singing out there instead of people yelling.  It has to be better.  It certainly makes me feel better.  There is no one to one on the room opposite mine now so I have relative privacy and can relax with it more.  I find healing in singing and I hope those around me might, too.  Thank you, Krishna Das, for all the ways you have given yourself and your music to me.  Tonight your music is dancing my heart.

BTW, he is touring in the UK and Europe from June this year.  If I can afford it I’m going to follow him everywhere.  Check out his events page.

Advertisements

This post is two interviews given by Monica Cassani on Nonduality Talk. I find I resonate with a lot that she says. She talks about her own experiences in the mental health system in America, and about her pursuit of healing Beyond Meds, which is the title of her regularly maintained blog. Each interview is about 55 minutes long and well worth listening to.

Everything Matters: Beyond Meds

PART ONE AND PART TWO ARE NOW INCLUDED IN THIS POST

For more visit Nonduality.Org

Jerry Katz says: We talk about the possibility of living without psychiatric medications, the implications, and Monica’s personal story of withdrawal from meds.

Listen to PART 2 here

Tracks:

0:00 – 4:35 Introduction to Monica Cassani. Monica talks about the possibility of living without psychiatric medications and the need to sometimes live with them to some degree. The nature of safe withdrawal.

4:35 – 11:21 The radical decision to stand up to the authority of psychiatry. Non-compliance: care and support needed, especially from the psychiatrist. “It shouldn’t be viewed as non-compliance.” It should be a right to get off drugs or to explore an alternative. Currently, people don’t have a choice. There’s no infrastructure to support options to standard psychiatric care.

11:21 – 15:20 Monica’s attempt to educate people as a first step toward building…

View original post 965 more words

Doing Something Different

Today I am doing something I haven’t done in a while – I am sitting in a pub using The Cloud to download.  I have been limiting myself to what my dongle can do, which isn’t very much and is very slow and hit and miss.  Last night I tried to download some Decameron, a folk group, and only one track downloaded successfully.  I have now managed to download the whole album.  Really I wanted Parabola Road from way back, but it isn’t on Napster anymore, which is a pain.  What made me come over was wanting to download some Noam Chomsky, one of his latest lectures, When Elites Fail.  As he says, the easy answer is just get rid of them, but the working answer is harder.  I look forward to listening to this when I go back to my bedroom.

I have a move in date for my bungalow now, it is 15th September.  Unfortunately part of the flooring has been pulled up.  They say it was probably dangerous but it looked fine to me.  I’m going to need some time to be able to replace it, so I hope they are not in a hurry to get rid of me at Broomhill House.  My CPN Jennie Wainwright is looking into a charity for me, and I am going to make another application for a budgeting loan.

There are some great blogs that I am following, they make me feel really boring in the way I write.  I just read an entry from Beyond Meds, about the Red Tent groups.  I wonder if they have them in the UK.  She also talked about yoga and ecstatic dancing groups, as alternatives to clinical approaches to mental health.  I am very much in favour of this approach.  She talked about sound healing as well.  Michael Mish is into that, he studied something called Tama Do.  I miss him.  I had an email correspondence with him for about a year but he broke it off.  He felt I had tricked him.  He said sometimes you try to help people but it goes wrong.  I still listen to his music, I often play I Can Heal to fall asleep to.  I love all his music.  I wish he would get back in touch.  The latest I knew he was trying to sell his house so he could go on the road.  Funny, here’s me needing a home and him trying to get rid of one.  He says on the road you realise how nice people can be.

I’m seeing an Assertive Outreach worker on Tuesday about getting a shed.  He used to work in a place that does them and we are going there.  I have no idea how much they would charge to erect it.  I saw a company that gives an inclusive price for erecting a wooden one, but not a metal one.  This might turn out to be more expensive than I can handle.   I am anxious to get my stuff out of storage, as the part I am thinking about costs me £96 every 4 weeks, and I can’t afford to be leaking that at the moment.  I have thought about getting it out and storing it in the bungalow until I can get the shed, but then heavy and awkward stuff will have to transferred to the shed and it will need 2 men to do it.  I think it is best to do it while the removals people are actually there and available.  My mum is lending me some money for the move but it still isn’t enough.  It would be far easier if I didn’t have my own stuff to move in and get out of storage.  It would be easier if the bungalow were bigger as well, then I wouldn’t need a shed.  I have got used to the idea of living there, it’s not impossible, but there is so much expense associated with it. I need a letter from the council for Housing Benefit, stating address, date of moving and amount of rent, and I don’t think they have given it to me.  They have given me a couple of folders with contracts, but that isn’t what Housing Benefit asks for.

There is one more thing – my self care isn’t good, I feel tired and overwhelmed and incapable.  Every so often they prompt me to have a shower, and last time they said I couldn’t use the kitchen unless I had a shower, so I was two days not allowed in the kitchen.  Last time the person who told me was angry with me, although it is supposed to be a symptom of schizophrenia, so her anger didn’t make much sense, from that perspective.  She also told me there was a conversation documented from that weekend that I had been asked to have a shower, but although the conversation was documented, no such conversation took place.  So if they are lying about things like that, what other lies are in my notes?

This article by Leah Harris on Mad In America argues that the way to address the roots of suffering and violence in American society is to be trauma-informed rather than to think in terms of mental illness.  I believe it applies just as much to the UK.

She talks about the effects of war, of 9/11, of homelessness, and of the effects of being abused or witnessing abuse in the family as a child.

She points out that most services are not trauma-informed and that a person can be re-traumatised by what they experience at the hands of the services, and she talks briefly about a community that is making an effort to be trauma-informed.  I think it is well worth a read, and hope my readers will give it their attention.  Thank you.

Poetry Please!

I wrote this in an idle moment at my work desk when I was about 26.  I wrote it to Jesus.  Some of it makes me cringe now.  Let’s not go there.  I thought I would take this moment to share it in full, as I can’t on Twitter!

And when I see the love in Your eyes
It melts my heart
And makes me wish
My love for You were deeper
For as I AM
You care for me
And by Your light
You set me free
Burn deeper
To the recesses that I’ve closed for years
Barriers of tears and fears
Let me look at You
And see the key
Your love and life
Enfolding me
And Your Kingship over me.

How Useful is Philosophy?

When I was in my 20s I was aware of a stereotyped response people came out with about the usefulness of philosophy, ie that it was probably no use at all when it came to the practicalities of life.  In that stereotype people who wanted to study philosophy were asked what use it would be for anything.

I was just thinking about that.  I haven’t given it much time before writing, maybe only about 10 minutes.

The conclusion I came to was that every life action comes out of an underlying philosophy, whether conscious or unconscious.  That people who say they have no time for philosophy are unconsciously adopting that of pragmatism, though they would deny they are moved by any philosophical position at all.

In Colossians 2:8 it says that they should not let anyone take them captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy because in Christ we have fullness.  In the context of the chapter it says that.  I have been wary of philosophy for many years on the strength of that, as have many others.  I have thought, with many others, that true Christianity and conversion was what was needed.

He does say ‘hollow and deceptive’ though, and one hopes that he is not putting all of philosophy into that bracket.  Jesus is the way, the truth and the life.  It is true that no one comes to the Father but by Him.  Among His disciples He always preached non-violence, though He acknowledged that those who did not embrace His teaching would go to war but that the disciples were not to be afraid because wars were bound to happen.

There are many who would resent the Christian position, unadorned, being thrust into their faces as the solution to life.  I think that an awareness and understanding of philosophy is at least a bridge in cross-cultural communication between Christians and non-Christians and the arguments for the Christian position can be found in and through other philosophies which people who would consider themselves anti-Christian and anti-religion would engage with more readily.

It must be the ultimate in unaccountability to say that we recognise no philosophy or religion at all.  I think it is true to say that there can be no lasting peace without recognition on both sides of an immovable higher authority to which each side submits itself throughout.  So I find myself unable to reconcile Jesus’ statement that there would be wars with the Church of England prayer ‘give peace in our time, oh Lord’, because different people groups do not recognise the same authority, and each people group recognises its authority in ways that make them at odds with others in their communities.

So is God just an imposition of the strong on the weak?  Having experienced many things, including physical healing, I cannot say so.  To me it is not enough to say that everyone has the power to heal and not refer that power back to a giver, especially as the healing I received was in a Christian context.

But I do think that people who have no time for religion or philosophy are dangerous people to be in control.

I think I started thinking about this today after listening to a Noam Chomsky recording on Napster, about mafia and hegemony.

Read it here in Scottish or English.

I was watching yesterday’s news coverage of Osama Bin Laden’s death, and found myself thinking, ‘A man’s a man, for all that’, and I knew it was a quotation, but I wasn’t sure where from, so I looked it up.  I was thinking it not to belittle a man and say he is dispensable, but to exalt him as a creature of intrinsic worth and nobility.  I was thinking it for Osama Bin Laden.  I was disagreeing with David Cameron and other world leaders who have expressed satisfaction over his death.  By extension I was also thinking it for the rest of us, including those of us who have found justification in holding the bitterness and unforgiveness that can allow us to say of a fellow human being, ‘good, he is dead’, rather than expressing regret that his killing was a necessary part, so we are being told, of bringing justice.

I believe that kind of expression of that kind of feeling brutalises and degrades us and makes us less than the ‘man’ that our own nature demands we should be.  The Bible says, in one of the Psalms, that we are gods, and that the big God gave His Son to die for our sins, while we were still sinners.  Jesus quoted that Psalm and said the scripture cannot be broken.

I have heard it taught that Islam was formed as a religion in direct opposition to Christianity and Judaism.  I think I heard that from Colin Dye’s platform.  I think we have to ask why.  Christians used to hold killing crusades.  Christians sided with Hitler in the killing of Jews.  Shakespeare’s ‘The Merchant of Venice’ was one of my set texts at school.  It was about a Jewish money lender who lent money to a Christian on the terms that he forfeit a pound of his own flesh if he defaulted.  All the Christian’s ships were lost at sea.  A woman called Portia argued the Christian’s case in court, and he was reprieved because the forfeit did not mention the shedding of blood, and Shylock, the money lender, was mockingly and derisively invited to take the pound of flesh, but if in so doing he shed one drop of blood he would have a forfeit of his own.  I think it was his life, but I can’t remember.

The first line of Portia’s famous speech, ‘the quality of mercy is not strained’, is often quoted and held to be a thing of great beauty.  But earlier the Jewish money lender had a great and truly painful speech of his own, basically saying ‘I am a man like you’, and the one part I can definitely remember and that registers with me deeply on an emotional level is where he talks about being in the street and having people ‘spit upon my Jewish gabardine’.  And although the quality of mercy is not strained, it seems that, from his humiliation at the end, it was meant to achieve mercy for Antonio, the Christian, but to be a lesson, yet another painful life lesson, to Shylock, the despised Jewish money lender.  I would like to draw more points from this play but I am not familiar with it any more and would need to read it again.  Points about if Shylock had gained his money legally and honourably, why was he so despised by the people who borrowed from him?  Did they need to borrow, would they have needed to borrow if they had not been so greedy themselves?  So why despise their provider?  Shylock’s requirement of Antonio was probably meant only to express his own distaste at lending to a man who spat upon his Jewish gabardine, or represented people who did.  He never expected, in all probability, that he would be in a position to call for the forfeit.  It was probably meant as a verbal expression of hate for hate.  The fact he called for it is obviously inexcusable, but would have been an expression of his own sick feelings of hate and revenge brought on by the abuse and constant humiliation.  Antonio was a rich merchant.  Shylock was a rich money lender.  What was Shylock’s sin?  Without reading again, it must have been that he was Jewish.  Shylock the Jew did not kill Jesus any more than Antonio the Christian (by affiliation and Christian country ‘birthright’ or by life changing choice and conviction?) did.  But Shylock was hated.

I’m not sure what the point of that is in this post.  Maybe it is just a way for me to say ‘this is hurting me’, because I identify emotionally with Shylock in his feelings over the abuse he received, regardless of any consideration of business ethics and morality.  I started crying when I found and read the Robert Burns poem and found it so perfect and beautiful, and that feeling hasn’t left me while considering Shylock.

My church used to say ‘hate the sin but love the sinner’.  We are justifying hating both the sin and the sinner, and that degrades both us and the sinner.  We are justifying such hatred towards a man that we rejoice in his death.  He couldn’t have achieved anything without his followers, and even though their figurehead has died, passed through death, if they choose revenge rather than deciding to change track and work themselves for brotherhood and world peace, I cannot see how the death of Osama Bin Laden can be seen as an ‘important step forward’, or the similar words used by my own beloved and respected prime minister, David Cameron.  So I would want to appeal to both sides, in the name of God and in the name of love and humanity, to please cool it and stop the revenge and attacks and the seeking of ‘justice’.  I would want to ask that, as Christians, we love our radical Islamic enemies, enough to uncover enough humility of our own to consider what it is that has so filled them with hatred and be willing to apologise and actively pursue reparation and healing of relationships with them, to stop the self-righteous demands and invective, and to approach them with the love and honour and humility we should employ, according to the Bible, towards all men.  I’m not saying that I myself am good at that, but I hope the character of our leaders is made of such stuff that they might be different, and be so openly, and not try to ‘confound the enemy’ by presenting a different face publicly than the one they present privately.   Our enemies need to know and see that we are honest and open not only about our rights, but about theirs, and about our own failings, even historical, and willingness to make reparation.  I don’t believe it is true, for any human being, that violence is all they understand.  The Bible says that the desire of a man is constant love, and I think that goes for everyone, and we need to be braver in showing that.  Vulnerable love, not tough love.  Active and proactive vulnerable love and openness to others.  ‘I’m sorry’ and ‘I understand’ and ‘yes, you’re right’ and ‘thank you, I hadn’t thought of that’, and even ‘I love you, are you OK, can I help you?’ love and pursuit of justice.

Love and concern for each other should flow from the top down and the bottom up and spread out and come in, and maybe then the right policies will be obvious and not take up so much time in our relationships, governmental and otherwise.  I want to see the leaders of my world loving one another.  Having therapy sessions and love-ins, most of the time, instead of arguments and policy formation.  If they can pass on the benefits of that to us and across international boundaries, it might change everything about our living and thinking and being in the world and with each other.

I believe all of this is part of our intrinsic worth and nobility which we abandon at our peril and that we need to rediscover, and part of what it means to be ‘A Man, for A’ That’.

In Jesus’ Name.

Amen.

I Thought There Was No Such Thing

As HP spicy sauce in Bulgarian supermarkets.

I was wrong!!!!!      Yayaah!!!!!  Da-dah!!!!!!

Dumb gone found it today.  Now I have to make the burgers and rashers and sausages to go with it.  I could have it just with beans on toast, or mushrooms on toast.  Not sure what else.  Craving a boiled egg earlier.  Found loads of stuff I never knew existed when I first started by just putting the name of the food in a search engine together with the word ‘vegan’.  My 2 favourite finds vegan blue cheese (sheese) and others in the same range, and vegan honey (agave nectar).

I say that, but some of the burgers you can get are nice as well, but these were my first two serious wants.  Redwoods burgers are really nice.  Just like the old hamburger.  You can get others which are nice in their own right but nothing like a meat eater is used to.  Also wheat slices which are just like cold sliced smoked meat.  Yum yum.  Theres a place near Piccadilly Circus that does a great range.  Whole food market or something like that.  I’ve forgotten, it’s so long since I’ve been there (it WOULD be, I’ve been out of the country for over a year).  They’ve got a nice cafe there as well.  All organic, all diets, from meat and fish to vegetarian and vegan.  Great place to shop, I really love it.  You can make your own muesli or oat cluster type breakfasts if you aren’t as lazy as me, or you can get some nice vegan Belgian Chocolate cereal, and maple syrup and pecan, I think it is.  I can’t remember the name of the manufacturer now.  But it’s really delicious.  It is a good place to shop for something out of the ordinary, really different from the ubiquitous high street supermarket.

Even then, if enough people discover these things and ask for them, the supermarkets, so I am told (oh yeah?) will stock them.  Don’t know how that works.  It might work out more expensive for smaller orders.  When I first heard of agave nectar (agave is a plant and the nectar is just like runny honey and you can get it in a few different varieties, and there’s also something called Sweet Freedom which is plant based, slightly thicker and comes mild or rich) I never expected that I would be able to find it in Sainsbury’s, but they stock it.  The agave nectar, that is.

OK, change the subject, how stupid do I want to be?  I’m 50 years old, for goodness’ sake, but I might be about to sound like a teenager with a crush.  There is a really debonair photograph of Tommy Boyd on his blog, with a piercing stare and a smile, arms folded.  I’ve had a bad day today in many respects.  I’m exhausted.  I’m lying on my sofa, it’s now (this second) 2.25 am.

I just scrolled down and rediscovered it, and looked at his face, and smiled, and the next second I was gone.  Just like that.  Out like a light.  Not asleep, but ‘zapped’, as they would have said at St B’s.  Apart from the fact that it hurts because I don’t know where we are with each other, I feel a lot better already.  Ready for a good sleep.

WAGblog: Dum Spiro Spero

"While I breathe, I hope"

Emerging From The Dark Night

Working through the Dark Night of the Soul to emerge as me.

The Elephant in the Room

Writing about my experiences with: depression, anxiety, OCD and Aspergers

The Sir Letters

A Tale of Love

The Seeker's Dungeon

Troubling the Surf with the Ocean

Seroquel Nation

Onward and upward...

We are all in this together

it's gonna be okay.

my last nerve

psychology | psychiatry | neuroscience | n stuff

A Philosopher's Blog

A Philosopher's View of the World...assuming it exists.