Self respect V

Mr Trump is only not a traitor because he is incapable of emotionally comprehending the concepts either of a moral obligation on himself or of loyalty. I pray that his sacking of Mr Comey is the desperate act it appears to be, and that enough honour is left that his fall is inevitable: that he has won himself more weeks, not more months, in the White House.

And yet I love the way he fights for his own selfish interests, his single minded, rat in a corner determination to do any damage necessary, that he might be free. There are times when a human being is alone and must do all it takes to survive.

Mmm. Which human being do I mean?

-Why don’t you want to work?
-Because I can’t see any good in it except money for bare survival. I don’t want responsibility, because I can only imagine that turning out badly. Walking back and forth in a warehouse bleeping barcodes as required by an automated system sounds ghastly. I would be required to walk faster than I reasonably could for eight hours, sacked after a few weeks for not walking fast enough, then sanctioned for being “voluntarily unemployed”.

And I don’t want to be told what to do.
-Why not?
-Because I will be told stupid things.

I have not dug down into this particularly, but in Newport I was in anguish because I thought what I was told to do was stupid, merely missing the point; there was something of that in Swanston, the complete lack of planning of the job I was given to do such that it became impossible to do it to any useful standard. I don’t trust or like people. Possibly I could work in a coffee shop. I could pull into my shell and not be noticed. Cleaning a table could be OK.

-You’re very bright.
-It’s a curse!

Or, it has not given me all I might want it to. And I see my friend not getting her way even though she is right, because others do not see that they are wrong- and her surprise; and she has approached the matter in an unpersuasive way, because she has seen the truth they have not.

I lack energy. I typically sleep in the afternoon, wake two or three times a night, can rely on myself to undertake a task in the morning, but not necessarily both the morning and afternoon, and the intellectual effort of writing a blog post tires me. I wonder if that makes me in any way “ill”- I lack a diagnosis for it. Many people like that have supportive families.

I have the gift of focusing tensions on me. Expelling me from Wellingborough local Quaker meeting was not a solution to a non-existent problem, but it did enable people to lash out at something, diverting their attention from their real problems. How marmite am I, that I can even rile Quakers?

On Saturday morning, I left home at 5.45 to cycle to Swanston, to get the train to London and arrive at the Tate at 8. Members can enter then, to see the David Hockney exhibition, and I was rewarded by sitting with five huge couple portraits, over 3m x 2m, including the wonderful Pool with two figures.

-Did that energise or exhaust you?

I loved the Pool. I loved the sunlight on the surround, and the cool forested mountains beyond. I thought of getting a poster-print of it for £25, but after the original it was not enough. And, after about five hours in the galleries, I was tired. So, both. I got to that room with those pictures, with just five other people in it rather than the scores who were there later, and thought, I can tell people of this experience. “I left home at 5.45 to cycle…” I was and I will be ran in my mind until I rebuked them, and settled into I am here. I am proud that I could concentrate on Fred and Marcia Weisman and wonder at her expression, the high neck and the way she seems to snatch her robe around her, yet it is slit…

I want to spend time with beautiful things.

And I am starving for a deep emotional link to People!

Twelve Coins

You have twelve gold coins, but one is a forgery. The forgery is lighter or heavier than the eleven true coins, but you do not know which. You have a pair of scales, in which you can weigh any combination of those coins against each other, but not against anything else. You can use the scales to weigh three combinations of coins. What combinations should you weigh, so that you will always be able to tell which is the forgery, and whether it is lighter or heavier than the others?

S told me that puzzle around 1990, and said she used it to get free drinks: in a week’s time she would buy the other a drink if he answered it, he would buy her one if he could not. I took four hours to work it out over two days, and it gave me intense joy. Leave a comment if you work it out.

There is a variant of Oware in which the second to move may always win, if she chooses the steps correctly. I have worked them out, and thought, it takes a special type of personality to enjoy that and be able to function in the world. Not now functioning, I think of that joy in pure intellectual puzzles. I am not using it for my advancement, but in Switzerland physicists have used the Large Electron Positron collider to work out what happened one billionth of a second after the Big Bang, and are now using the Large Hadron Collider to work out what happened in the second trillionth of a second. What is the use of that? Well, hospitals use particle accelerators to create unstable isotopes, which, ingested, produce positrons- antimatter- enabling the doctors to build up images of the brain as a diagnostic tool. This is called Positron Emission Tomography.

When S asks “what are the reasons why we should accept you as a woman?” Nicole says it is a matter of heart and soul, and indeed it is. (Read her post on Daniel, for goosebumps and tears.) And S, having worked through her anger at my barging into Women’s space, and found some liking for me, and still thinking, or feeling, that I am not really a woman, takes this intellectual, reasoning approach. I would rather she did, than surrender to anger. She may even, through reason, talk her own heart-response round.

I am glad to hear of her anger, because I did not feel anger from her, only withdrawal, and in that women’s space last year I felt apprehensive of anger. In January 2010 my ways of hardening myself to cope with the World finally broke down, and I am seeking all means to cope as my unprotected self.

I have played Solitaire obsessively, and this morning spent fifty minutes on one game, my 653rd, repeatedly making the moves and rewinding them to see what order the stack had to be distributed on the layout, and how to do that, to get it out- my 95th win. I found that satisfying, however empty I find my addiction to it normally. Whatever, it is worth spending time finding what delights me, and what, so like it, I falsely imagine delights me.

TEDx: Louie Schwartzberg on Gratitude, with some gorgeous images. Thanks to Jacqui.

Coffee with T

T loves Costa Coffee, and loves talking of Zen, the mind/brain interface, consciousness and ways of thinking, and these topics please me too. Whence comes Inspiration? What happens when you sever the corpus callosum? His younger brother, who was gay just after “sodomy” ceased to be a criminal offence in England and tried so hard to be straight, is a spiritual medium, and his sister was a homoeopath, and T, a former hypnotherapist, has this wonderfully thoughtful, rational way of dealing with these issues. We dispose of Naive Realism- how would you know if you were living in The Matrix- wonderful film that, the sequels were rubbish- and have such similar interests and perspectives that the conversation is a delight. What do you mean by “I”? Well, there is this physical object, or process, continually taking in or excreting substance and ideas, which being an evolved animal has a strong attachment to its own continuing existence. How could new ideas change brain structures? By reinforcing new pathways through the brain. Well, it happens, we cannot say why. How can I talk about a soul or even an “I”, when if I suddenly stop taking oestradiol I get all emotional, weepy, impulsive, angry, and if I take it again I become more even-tempered? That is a chemical process, surely, rather than an “Individual”.

What I want to discuss is healing, and how I cannot justify it with my rational being: so how just to trust my emotional being? Of course I did that before: transitioning from acting male to expressing myself female makes no sense at all, rationally, apart from the fact that I Wanted to do it. I so want my rational brain to be able to justify healing work, and it can’t. I grew up having to justify everything rationally, being unaware of my feelings.

Have I told you this story? I decided to kill myself (No, he says, I have not told that story. When was that? Oh, years ago, not recently). I got my pills, and I went into my living room to get whisky to wash them down with, because I thought that might make me lose consciousness more quickly and be better able to go through with it. But in my living room I found my bath water flowing through the ceiling. A join in the drainpipe had given way, and the water flowed out. So I called the landlord, and the plumber, and got it dealt with, and after the plumber left the immediate desire to die had gone away. A Synchronicity!

But what about all the people who decided to die and didn’t have something like that to distract them? he asks. Yeah, yeah, I know. Still, that was my Proof of the Existence of God for years. And- why Libya but not Syria? Is that the same question?

This link between the amygdala and the limbic system and the frontal lobe- different voices, then Consciousness, the illusion of the I-

An even more personal story. I get a little weepy-
……………………………..and then I relax.

I went to a Healing Development Group with the Healing Trust. They have a particular procedure, first giving energy to the seven chakras, then to the parts of the body in turn. And I felt my hands grow warm, but when I passed over the leader’s arm, my hands suddenly felt cold. It felt so different. And I did not have the courage to tell her, or anyone until now. Could that be- sensing something? Could it be real?

Actually, now I have shared this story, trusted to share it, I feel- different. More relaxed, and Much, Much Happier. Wonderful. It feels real. I can respect that feeling.

People describe the flow of energy, or Qi, with very precise technical terms, in great detail, similar to the descriptions anatomists use, yet not describing anything an anatomist could observe. It mimics rationalism, but the rationalists can’t accept it. This is the weepy bit- my rational being has to be content with Unknowing. This is the joyous bit- in that Moment, I can trust my feeling.

Out into the sunshine. There is a busker in a dinner jacket, bow tie and fingerless gloves playing the guitar, and I stop to listen. Then Candy recognises me, and we chat with the busker about that time when the violinist played in the railway station– was it New York? Not sure. Candy is almost a stranger, we exchanged a few words when I was working. Now we exchange phone numbers. Impromptu conversations in the street! Not what I am used to. I feel relaxed, more real. He plays Bach. There is a group of rough-looking men four yards away, and one suddenly barks like a dog- RuhRuhRuhRuhRuhRuhRuh- loudly at another- rough looking men, hearing the music.

To the garage to get my car fixed, where I meet Ganesh. God is everywhere!

A partnership

At this stage in my development, it makes sense to me to think of my emotional being and my intellect as separate beings, in dialogue. What decision is proper to be made by one or the other? How may they work together? Can I bring out their separate views, and decide between them?

In the case of my seeking to practise complementary therapies, I am not sure the strong Rationalist rejection of them is in fact my intellect speaking. It has a different, emotional feel. I think it is the shadow of my emotional being, feeling fear of this work, and projecting onto the intellect a rejectionist, rather than a sceptic, view. The sceptic will accept the evidence of her own senses. Where the theory- meridians of energy, say- does not appear to relate to physiological entities, the sceptic can say that even if the theory of causes is not true, the observations of effectiveness can be. The rejectionist refuses to accept evidence, or is more critical of it than it deserves and demands a higher standard of proof than is reasonable. That is an emotional rather than a rational response. I am certainly conscious of the desire to do this work, and investigate possibilities.

I think it is my old fear, and my old anger. These need further work.

In the case of that woman who is enchanting- that metaphor has so much more meaning for me now- and captivating, but not always entirely kind, my emotional being is all at sea; How do I feel? Still captivated. Appalachian Spring came on the car radio, and I was screaming and weeping thinking of a particular memory- how could I be that stupid in that particular one of several trivial instances? So, I search out the appropriate memory. With one so completely charming, there is little to choose from, but that moment is the one. “Calm down” she snapped, and I felt crushed, humiliated and betrayed. My intellect picks the memory for my emotional being to work on, to create the necessary distance. Oh, and one day Valentine’s Day will not irk me…

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