Friday, January 22, 2021

Comments by Alex

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  • Getting out of abusive situations is incredibly complex and takes a great deal of fortitude, trust, tenacity, a bit of cleverness, and very hopefully, empathic support to help in the transition. We don’t want to repeat it, so there is healing to do. That’s a process subject to a person’s individual nature, to be discovered along the healing.

    Abuse has been generational and social, and the entire world is reeling at this time. We’re all affected by it and I believe each of us has some kind of responsibility in it, however we choose to take that on. I wouldn’t judge any of it. I’m just hoping that sooner than later we can start do better than what is currently failing from profound divisiveness, which is society on the whole, unfortunately.

  • To me, this is at the heart of things right now. I thought that paragraph said it perfectly and simply, to the point, and yet, in reality, it can be murky and seriously rugged and even potentially dangerous, because of what you say. It becomes an abuser-turned-victim situation, victim becomes abuser, sides are taken, lies are perpetuated, heart and truth are lost in the shuffle, chaos ensues, and on and on, back and forth. Nothing to gain from this and that “system” will utlimately destroy itself, so I totally agree, divorce is a wise option, to heal and create positive life changes.

    Yet, I think it’s the norm right now, and it’s playing out in the world visibly. I think that, as a society, it is what we need to evolve out of, to a new normal, NOT based on all this. What would that look like, a fair and just well-balanced system/community/world filled with people who know how to respectfully support one another, despite personal beliefs, so that we don’t have to rely on corrupt systems of mind control?

    I think it’s best to know our own truth and live by it, and these are changing times, so I’d say that living our truth from moment to moment is a practice which requires flexibility at this point. There are many competing realities at play right now. Who knows what truth is for someone else? We can only know this for ourselves.

  • Making it a point to “figure out other people” is most often at the expense of one’s own self-awareness.

    At the time of my training, which was over 20 years ago, I was buying into this stuff hook, line, and sinker before going through my own experience and discovering it as a huge fail to humanity. It was a rough awakening because of the dual role I was playing. I was suddenly questioning everything I thought I knew and finding my way through these paradoxes to clarity took many years of learning a variety of different perspectives of healing and personal growth, spiritual issues and evolving consciousness, how energy works, etc., and applying these to my own life situation and experience to make shifts in consciousness I needed to make in order to once and for all heal and get back to creating my life with a sense of ownership and self-agency, and being in the flow of it freely, as I desire to be.

    But looking back, my graduate psych program may as well have been “Stigma 101, Advanced Stigmatizing, How to Scapegoat Others” (as in, “othering”), etc. That was about the extent of it, to what it always boils down. I discovered first from the education, and then from my personal experience on the receiving end, that this is exactly what this entire field is based on, inherently creating this social division more and more by “assigning” (projecting) labels, false traits, powerlessness, whatever, onto clients. Lots of ways to create a scapegoating dynamic, and this is a perfect set up for it. It is the nature of the beast, it cannot be helped. The self-protecting denial factor is over the top, as this article perfectly illustrates.

  • Thanks for the amendment, Diana, and yes, I agree that embodying the soul would be to live our spirit truth. These are feelings that drive us as guidance along our own path of evolution, rather than as emotional reaction to others filtered through our ego. I think it’s how we interpret our emotional responses that distinguishes between ego-driven vs. soul-inspired. This is how I’ve worked with it, in any event.

  • As an empath, I had to learn all about energy fields and psychic boundaries in order to distinguish my energy from that of others. Chakra training helped me more than anything. When I learned who I was as energy, I learned how to embody my true nature freely. We’re all unique and different, which is how life is interesting and creative.

  • Feeling in despair from powerlessness, family scapegoating, relenteless systemic bullying, all kinds of reasons people would want to give up on life. These things do mess with the mind and it is heartbreaking. Perhaps a bit more kindness, along with the ability to hear and listen with compassion when someone is suffering, would go a long way in helping people to not feel so hopeless and alone during hard times. Common sense if one is attuned to human nature, no research needed.

  • I support your perspective wholeheartedly, exactly my experience, word for word. I spent 19 years living with diagnoses and psych drugs, and it’s been that same amount of time now, 19 years, with no drugs, away from diagnoses or anything of the kind, that is totally irrelevant at this point, and having nothing to do with “mental health” anything, other than to support radical change. I had a string of teachers for a while to help me heal from all that on a mind/body/spirit level while learning self-healing and all kinds of new perspectives, but I’m on my own now, having integrated and applied what I’ve been learning, with wonderful (indeed, miraculous) results, living by my own truth exclusively, my life, my space, my rules, my intuition, and creative freedom which I can own despite anything.

    For me it’s a totally new paradigm of living from 19 years of systematic healing and personal growth work, a new lifestyle now. Doing exactly what you say, practicing soul awareness and feeilng my own inner radiance, which I call, collectively, our light, spiritual voice, inner guidance, etc. Our soul is our guide, healer, teacher, and best friend. When we know our soul, there is no need to depend on others, that would be only by choice, not need. It’s how I took my power back.

    Your work is so authentic, and when I read your blogs I see you as creating your healing. I think that’s what we do, in the end, we create our own healing path, and that is based on who we are. It’s so personal and we’re all so unique, I see it as our signature in life, how we choose to create our paths forward.

    Mainly, I just wanted to echo what you say as reality. At least, it has been mine! We’re all just coming to understand what these things mean in the most practical way (soul growth, inner light, consciously creating) but I see it coming more and more into collective awareness, because we need this information now.

    I very much appreciate what you share, it is fresh and creative and filled with potential for new things, it is fertile new ground. I think we need more and more of this perspective, fully in the light. Finally, new avenues to explore, which means new thoughts, new visions, and new manifestations. We’ve only just begun, but it is the change I’ve envisioned for a while now, and which I practice in my own life. Thank you.

  • I disagree, I believe that, once awakened to the fact that this is all bullshit, there is something from which to recover (some pretty serious betrayal, for starters) and I also believe one can recover from it, it is entirely possible. This is a trauma, and it can heal. This kind of healing is transformational, creates change from within.

    Identifying with a BS illness for too long creates something to the effect of it, simply from how we’re moving around in our skin with that belief, it drives us. And it creates relationships with others and our entire world based on this, so it accomodates this false reality. Undoing this challenges those around us, inevitably. Everyone’s world is rocked as we go through shifts in consciousness to change our reality and relationship to ourselves, for the better, based on a new self-validating truth, clearer boundaries, etc. I don’t think there’s any way around that, great personal growth here.

    Disidentifying is a start, but there is a lot of work to do, especially if we lived with this for too long, it internalizes. This is not an easy healing, challenges our beliefs. But I do believe it’s the path to well-being and feeling good about ourselves, taking back our power and allowing our true selves to shine through, after going through all of this totally marginalizing and dehumanizing stay-in-the-box bullshit, just like healing from any trauma is possible with focused intention. It’s how we free ourselves.

    I’m reiterating what I feel is the most powerful message here, to drive change from within, because I agree with Ekaterina, it comes down to what we believe about ourselves, this is what creates our life experience more than anything–

    “The main thing is to believe, to believe that you do deserve a good life, and that you can be happy.”

  • “But there is no illness, and there is no chronic illness as proposed by psychiatry. It is bullshit.
    One can recover from THEIR illness, and one can lead a happy and meaningful life. The main thing is to believe, to believe that you do deserve a good life, and that you can be happy.
    Step out of the system, take control of your own life and your beautiful soul, and step instead into your own radiant space.”

    Well said, absolute truth.

  • Very well said and clear truth. I’ve worked with two peer agencies and this is exactly what happens. Double standards, blatant discrimination, and the usual fare of gaslighting and double-speak to avoid any challenges to their hierarchical corporate system. Because they can get away with it, because it is the norm.

    Addressing this effectively requires breaking a deeply stubborn and self-protecting toxic system where truth-speaking against the grain is seriously frowned upon and gets one ostracized, regardless of one’s role and position. But it does bring brave hard truth one way or another, and that’s always a good thing, once the dust clears. I’ve been there, and it’s always a blessing in disguise, and I know some kind of change has occured as a result of taking that necessary leap of faith.

  • Yes, it’s one of the social abuses to which I refer which is prevalent in the mainstream, financial bullying, which is not a nice energy, lacks consciousness. If I pray for anything these days, it is for kindness to find its way back into our collective humanity as a dominant force. Seems to be largely in remission at present.

  • Thank you for this very beautiful and heartelft offering, Caroline. I feel the grace of your heart from your writing. It is truly inspirational and very moving.

    I’m with you 100%. Being in service is fulfilling in and of itself. To feel spiritual abundance in our hearts, grounded to the Earth, and supporting the uplifting of humanity–especially in these uniquely trying times which affect us all–brings us all we need and want, if we trust the flow of the universe to support us as we go. That is a powerful shift in focus, and in our self-identity, based on our own personal experiences of moving through suffering and toward our true spirit nature, for relief and more toward discovering our wholeness as divine beings having a human experience.

    That was my experience with healing, in any event, the perspective which saved me by putting me in control of my own life journey, taking my power back from where I had given it unwittingly, putting it trustingly into the hands of oppressors and the corruption they practiced and supported, whether they were conscious of it or not. That was the program, what we were raised to believe. Live and learn, eh? Often the hard way, but at least there is a path beyond all of that, thank God! We still deal with all kinds of challenges in life, of course, but when we are in our light, this is our guidance forward, toward our true power of personal life creation.

    For this reason, I appreciate getting on in years and leaving behind my ignorance about the world, which looking back, I can feel the vulnerablity of this, to underestimate the destructive nature and power of social bullying and abuse, and how it wreaks havoc on people in so many ways, not to mention society on the whole.

    If we learn as we go and keep waking up to our spiritual truth, I find that life actually gets easier and invigorating rather than more and more burdensome and exhausting, because we can better maintain our well-being as we go if we know our spirit and clear hearts, moving away from fear and abuse and more toward compassion and faith, which I believe are matters of living with positive self-regard and having clear and self-loving boundaries–despite protests from the outside, which is oppressive.

    Expanding our consciousness beyond the physical world to know our spirit truth in conjuction to our human desires is, to me, THE healing because that is how we align with our truth, walk our talk, and create a positive momentum in our lives, from a completely different perspective than that to which we’re accustomed–as you say, all about money, conforming, “winning,” etc. That has been our downfall, I believe, by creating a cut-throat competetive and conflit-oriented society, which drains us all eventually and bears no fruit whatsoever. We fear not having money (not just because of surival issues but also due to stigma and marginalization), and so we can easily sacrifice our highest values in order to acquire it, coming from that level of fear/terror.

    Having the integrity to live in our spiritual truth will go against the grain in a corrupt society, so indeed our power and strength is to go by our own very personal inner guidance by honoring our emotions, how we feel from moment to moment, rather by the judgments outside of us for not honoring social norms, or whatever others go by. We are unique in how we live our lives, and so when we dare to be different, we embody the change and actually become it. I have found this path to be heart expansive, which has made all the difference in what I’ve created around me. The conneciton is mystical and profound, and very evident to me now. I think it’s pretty awesome, kind of magical. Life is more intertesting and creative for me now that I have found my spiritual voice in addition to my heart’s truth, and how they intersect.

    It takes a lot of courage and faith to evolve and grow past social conventions in order to live in our authentic truth from moment to moment, and to share your evolution along the way for greater understanding within the collective. Hats off to you, and big blessings along the way of your inspiring journey.

  • Thank you, that makes me happy to hear. Balancing healing and activism for change is an interesting edge. One does feed the other when we help each other along. I’m honored to share my story with you, thank you for your interest!

    I shared my story on Mad in Italy last year, centering mainly on my experiences in the system and how that played out. Here are the links, it’s in 3 parts–

    And I made a film in 2011 from within the system, after having left and gone back to do public speaking about my experience of healing and also the prejudice, bullying and stigma I encountered on all levels. This is more my family story, however, how I took that on initially, and then how it repeated in the system, same damn thing! I talk about family healing in this one, along with 5 others who share their experiences and perspectives as well–

    My hunch (and hope!) is that you’ll appreciate this film, Bowen, because in essence, we’re all talking about how the system made us feel like Boo Radley, that is exactly the effect of STIGMA. The system uses this to try to get people to come for “treatment” without “shame,” whereas I say RUN from the system, and you’ll have a shot at healing because there is no way no how that anyone can heal from anything when one is being thrown these projections. That is a toxic environment, textbook! Lots to say about this.

    I hope you enjoy all of these and that they speak to you. Please feel free to contact me through Steve McCrea if you feel compelled to discuss any of this more in depth. I’d enjoy hearing from you!

  • I see you as a light and beacon of truth, in addition to being a very heartfelt, articulate, and obviously brilliant human being. What you’ve been through is an education that you can pass along to others which will create great change through healing and awakening. That’s how your words resonate with me. I am extremely touched and inspired by your article, and your comments. Many, many blessings to you!

  • Well, it is a bullying society, has been forever it seems but right now, this is being called out all over the place, as you are doing, so thank you for that. That is not easy because of the enabling, making it systemic, and as you, I, and others have disovered to our dismay and frustration, there is backlash for resisting and calling out bullying, that’s a big part of the challenge with all this–trauma upon trauma of being rendered powerless.

    The bullies win because most people will not cross them, or they have something to lose by doing so, and it becomes one against all the others, aka scapegoating. All kinds of reasons and justifications are offered where there is, in reality, bullying going on. Just ask the victim, they’d know best! But, tragically, that is the voice rarely heard.

    I see the world as having been trapped in an abuse-victim-enabling/denial dynamic, just about everywhere it seems, these are the most prominant examples in the media, at least, that I can see. And it played out like this for me in the system for many years, until I found my way out of all that. These are our choices, these roles. Seems like lose/lose to me.

    Personally, I believe we can evolve out of that, and that would be enormous social change starting, a new paradigm NOT based on social dysfunction and systemic bullying, for a refreshing change. I see this as the healing path toward a better society, that’s my personal perspective on the matter.

    My thought is that what makes people uncomfortable is their shadow, so they project it outward. I believe that is what has become the norm and causing chaos among us, as a society. Those snap judgments are programmed beliefs based on prejudice, there is no thought behind them, no truth there, just a complete lack of self-awareness and self-responsibility. But indeed, that’s how people are these days, to a large extent, we learn by example. Part of our humanness in these times, I guess, it’s hard to be calm in the storm. So how to ascend this?

    First thing I think is, how can we have compassion when we operate from judgment? I think that’s impossible, they are diametrically opposed. Where there is compassion, there can be no judgment, so the more we cultivate compassion and be ok with being an imperfect human being–which is all of us–then judgment will fall by the wayside. I see that as transformative healing.

  • Bowen, thank you for your courage and sensitivity, exactly what the world needs right now. Your story is troubling because it speaks the truth of our times. To be persecuted as you describe is a crime against humanity, and it does leave an imprint. I know this from my own experience.

    “I told my hospital psychiatrist that I felt like Boo Radley in the novel To Kill a Mockingbird expecting a sympathetic response. Instead, I remember him sneering, ‘Well, it’s interesting you say that since he ended up doing some bad things.'”

    This made my head explode a bit, so many things wrong here! I know TKAM very well, I’ve read the book and have seen the film many times. I’ve said that in the past, too, about myself, that I felt like Boo Radley. For me this is no longer the case, but I remember vividly how that felt at the time.

    I can’t believe what the shrink said (well, I can, very easily, but it still stuns me), absolutely talking out of his ass, which in this case, I’d call profoundly irresponsible, and at the most subtle core of the problem with some of these clinicians. I’d call it bigoted, but it’s not clear from his response that he even knows this story! He either had no idea what you were talking about or, if he does know TKAM and who Boo Radley is, then he simply matched the little kids who gossiped about him in that very way, pure stigma, utter nonsense, and it caused them fear–not Boo, but the false stories about him, THAT was the true source of their fear. Evidently, psychiatrists, like these kids, fear their own false projections, causing all kinds of problems for everyone. Time to un-gaslight ourselves!

    Boo never did “bad things” nor would he hurt a fly. He was an extremely kind, sensitive, introverted man who ultimately rescued the two kids who gossiped about and feared him, and even taunted him, and saved their lives, totally selflessly and very bravely, given his fear of society, and out of pure kindness and compassion.

    Ignorance and stigma go together like tar and feathers. Good grief.

    Thank you again for speaking your truth, very powerful.

  • “My instinctive answer is that the path follows me when I am in my heart driven self.”

    I love this response, Sinead, it’s right on I believe. When we are in our heart, we are in our true guidance. The heart is what heals.

    And indeed, forgiveness is a practice. We have to exercise that “muscle.” Forgiveness was the cornerstone of my healing. Dropping resentment freed up my energy so I could create forward without repeating the past.

  • I really enjoyed reading this, how you are following the light toward healing. To forgive betrayal is a huge shift in consciousness, and it takes strength, humility, and complete trust in our own process of personal growth and heart healing. That is core change, very powerful work. Thank you for sharing your experience of this!

  • Your courage and transparency are very inspiring. You are helping so many people by sharing your truth with such clarity. I was especially struck by this passage–

    “At the first meeting with the psychiatrist, she reviewed the facts of my case—I was 65, lived alone, had lost a son, and my other son lived 900 miles away. Given these four simple facts, she decided that I was suffering from textbook geriatric depression. She never asked me any questions about my life that might have revealed alternatives. She never learned that I was not suffering from irritability, apathy, withdrawal, or changes in appetite, which are among the most common on the checklist of “geriatric depression” symptoms. Nor did she learn that I’d been working at a job I loved, was in a long-term romantic relationship, and was the organizer of a very active women’s group.”

    This is why I say psychiatry is devoid of humanity, exactly this, which renders it not only useless but also incredibly dangerous. These clinical, academic minds are trained to categorize, project, and “other”–that is, to dehumanize. That is the learned habit from the training and education, it is EXPECTED. And, it is cold, like sub-zero. Heart and spirit and humility have nothing to do with this institution. That is a severe dissociation which is what leads to tragedy over and over again.

    Thank you for sharing the story of your heart and journey of your spirit with the world, where your light can shine, and your wisdom will lead others. That is healing for all concerned, the evolution of humanity through expanded consciousness–true change from the inside. Continued blessings and good healing to you.

  • “Psychiatrists learn early on not to believe what a mental health patient would say”

    I wish I’d known this a long time ago, would have saved my breath and an awful lot of trouble. I think they call this “casting pearls before swine.”

    And how exactly is this helpful to a person who is suffering, to lose a battle before it even begins? And moreover, when it shouldn’t be a battle in the first place! Suffering upon suffering upon suffering. This rather contradicts the notion of healing altogether, doesn’t it? Talk about creating a neagtive false sense of self! That is off the charts, creates chronic suffering, and indeed, it is the legacy of psychiatry. What a big fat mess this creates for people, families, and for society on the whole.

    Thanks for speaking truth about this. A heads up for many, you’ve been warned. This translates purely as cynical and devoid of compassion and empathy, not to mention bigotry leading to blatant discrimination, loss of human rights and dignity, and all out social abuse, becomes the norm, as we have going on now. So dangerous!

  • “How many more stories like this do we need to hear before a “professional” telling someone they have a “biochemical imbalance” as an argument for them to ingest neurotoxins is made a criminal offense?”

    Yes, that is my question right now, too. Or at least for the word to spread really fast by this point that this really is potentially murderous malpractice and it has got to stop. Why not voluntarily? Yeah yeah I know, money and power yadayada. As far as I’m concerned, that is played. This is some kind of divisive programming, the “othering” factor, mostly through education and training but also through blatant manipulation, that has run amuck.

    We’ve been telling these stories for years and years and years now, all over the internet and in all kinds of arenas, and they all have some glaring common denominators which lead easily to the conclusion that this is pure crap, and costly in all kinds of ways. Seems neither reason, logic, or example after example in huge numbers of fails leading to personal tragedies are taken at all into consideration, and instead are either dismissed, argued with, avoided, and/or truth twisted. Nothing is ever their fault, these are the biggest scapegoaters ever, and they lie, lie, lie. That’s unconscionable to me, and downright insane. What is the friggin’ deal with this industry?? For the love of God and your fellow human beings, WAKE (the f*ck) UP!!!

  • I agree with everything you say here, oldhead, especially this–

    “But its important for victims of psychiatry to not be misled into believing that any of this bigotry/”stigma” has anything to do with them as individuals, or their “behavior.” They/we are being oppressed as a stereotype, a class, i.e. the class of people upon which psychiatric labels have been bestowed.”

    –that, indeed, the stigma/bigotry is based on stereotyping and classism, and not on reality, this is not deserved. I’d call it scapegoating, and there are many ways to speculate or call out the motive for this abuse against an individual or class of people which threatens the status quo, one way or another. Not following the herd, thinking independently and critically, is one way to get scapegoated, because that person will not feed the system. And so the gaslighting, stigma projections, and systemic bullying begins, standard procedure.

    I know that in the process, civil crimes are committed but that can be next to impossible to pinpoint and prove when this is the system itself at work. So with no practical legal recourse for being the victim of this particular brand of hate crime and discrimination, there is healing that can be done here, which is one way to exercise our power and create some kind of change, at least on the inside. That’s a start.

    I went through this, very specifically, and got a bit of legal justice initially, but this trend continued as I created my way forward, I could see this was “the norm” all along the system and its tangents.

    I called it out all I could and caused a bit of stir here and there, but the most important thing for me was to heal from having been deliberately lied to and about–repeatedly and relentelssly–in a way that specifically blocked my ability to make a living, all based on the negative stereotypes which drew a picture that was truly the opposite of who I was. With that mass delusion present in society already, it was maddening trying to get my truth out to save my own ass, it only caused more backlash. That’s how this works, and it is literally crazy-making.

    What I internalized from this was some serious doubt about myself and the world, and in order for me to move forward with my own goals, I had to clear my head of all this treachery and general negativity, and also had to shift how I took on these experiences, give it meaning to my life and personal growth and guidance. I was, after all, making choices that led me to and through all of this. That’s the inner work which I talk about, waking up to many things here in the process, about myself mostly and how to move forward in a more aware, and therefore self-empowered, way.

    I knew after a while it wasn’t me causing this, but still, I had to figure out how to best deal with this enormous obstacle (the injustice of stigma/bigotry, and the massive corruption which manifests from this, acting as saboteur to good works and quality of life) so as to meet my own needs and live my life the way I intend, freely.

    I had to figure this out internally, by first feeling a lot of hard emotions generated from being ambushed and betrayed by those I had trusted to do their jobs with integrity and comptenece. Alright, so I woke up and discovered I was naive because apparently this was way too much to expect. Led to a lot of changes for me, based on a new truth. Best I could do, that I could think of! In the end, new perspective led to new reality. Exactly how it worked for me.

    I’ve tried holding hope that others would change to suit me, but in the end, people change when they’re ready, not when I’m wanting them to–duh! I always have the power to work on myself, though. Not at all the same as self-blame, more like self-creating. This is why I focus inward on this issue, it’s an easier place of reference to create meaningful change.

  • I know those images well, boans, and that’s exactly what I mean. The mirror in real life. It is, indeed, a choice whether to see and acknowledge one’s own misguided actions when it is purely evident, or to remain defensive, rigid, avoidant, and in cold denial. Two different choices, two different paths. One of them is humble, courageous, truthful, and healing, to own our part in anything that is so life betraying, when we allow ourselves to wake up. That, and only that, is really and truly liberating, on all fronts.

    “What gives me hope is that the corruption of our politicians where I live is so open these days that it means we are ready for change.”

    Me too! May the doors blow wide open and all be revealed sooner than later. I think at this point, however, the battle is between those of us who really and truly are ready for change and are doing what we can to create and allow it, and those who resist change because the system works for them corrupt, one way or another.

    We need a few honest to goodness “sinners-turned-repenters” on our side. They’d hold a lot of power in this because that would mean that they actually went through that transformation themselves, so they ARE the change we want to see in the world. When we stop fearing our shadows and face them with humility, along with any grave errors we may have commited along the way–and most of us have a few things we don’t like thinking about ourselves–we can practice radical self-compassion, and self-forgiveness, if it helps to release guilt. People can go through deep shifts in consciousness, but it does take work, along with the desire to make changes.

    Many ways to go once we own our shit, but it’s the only way healing and change can happen. And once people change, the world can’t help but to follow. Can’t be any other way!

  • I think the issue of stigma is really about the negative psychological effects of being treated like an “other” (marginalized), which can become internalized and that will lead to all kinds of troubles for a person that can be very challenging to overcome. There is no peace of mind in this, just constant rumination and inner struggle, either in despair or fighting to keep it at bay. Very easy to slip into hopelessness when living with stigma, so it can become lethal.

    The act of stigmatizing a human being is a blatantly abusive act because it is detrimental to a person’s well-being, and it is based on the delusion of an entire society, a mass shadow projection. It’s just one big lie that everyone agrees to, and this becomes the social rule. That’s a society ripe for an awakening, and it won’t come easy because it means everyone will be forced to see their own shadow.

    I agree that the burden is on society to do better by its own members, but in addition, it is traumatic to live with stigma. Social stigma is a reflection of what society will not see about itself, and it also deeply harms the individual who is the target of the social abuse. This is not about “hurt feelings.” This is about denying people respectability, rights, and quality of life.

    Overcoming having been stigmatized involves specific healing. Otherwise, living with stigma is like having something draining you constantly, which becomes part of one’s own process. This is an issue of personal well-being and quality of life as well as human rights and social justice. These all go hand in hand and all of it must be addressed if we expect meaningful change to occur.

  • Congratulations on the work you’ve done on yourself, sounds as though it’s been quite fruitful in your healing journey. Certainly living by our values is our integrity and protecting ourselves in a stigmatizing and discriminating industry and community is understandable. However, I can’t see how it speaks of social change–or “rethinking” anything–because there is no challenge to that prejudice, so it remains status quo.

    There is another perspective to consider when it comes to our relationships with ourselves and with society at large, and also pertaining to our roles in the world, which I think is well articulated in this quote by Marianne Williamson–

    “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

  • “Toxic psychiatry” and “toxic patriarchy” would seem to be just about the same thing. Sound leadership would be nice, where the greater good is considered over greed, which I define as one person’s ego being satisfied at the sacrifice of others–the essence of injustice, a dysfunctional system, and it leads to oppression and needless suffering. Even with good intentions, it’s hard to strike a social balance–if it is at all possible–when we choose to put issues of money and vanity over and above the quality of human life for absolutely everyone in that community, no exclusion, no exceptions.

  • Very powerful article and perspective. I struggle with definitions of what is ‘positive’ vs. what is ‘negative,’ and also what is ‘toxic’ vs. what is ‘nourishing.’ They can feel universal in one sense, but there is nuance and individuality here, too, that is, diversity and relativity.

    I use these words, but context and intention do matter and language has so much energy to it. We attach a lot to words, and also personalize them, I think that’s human nature. We also have the free will to choose how we face ourselves and how we relate to the world around us, through language, at any given moment. There’s a lot of creativity in how we express ourselves. I think it’s more of an art than a science, because we actually CREATE from language.

    I believe one thing that is clear is that allowing ALL our emotions is where freedom comes in. And yes, our society is highly restrictive here, no permission to be fully ourselves (or even hardly ourselves!), which not only cuts us off from our nature–which, in turn, is terribly harmful–but also, this is oppression.

    Psychiatry, in particular, slams and penalizes not just emotions, but passion, which is our spirit. Hard to put any kind of positive spin on that, it just sucks, and in the end, it is debilitating if one does not find a way back to oneself from being harmed this way. And yes, it is harmful and abusive to emotionally manipulate others by attaching shame to how someone feels about anything. That can ONLY be a projection because how can it be shameful to feel? That is dehumanizing, and defies all logic to me. As long as we’re ok with ourselves, I don’t think we need anyone else’s permission. The trick is allowing ourselves to be ourselves.

    These are challenging times. All kinds of things are coming forth from the shadows, and into the light, including some very strong emotions that come with awakening. Well, they need to if we are ever to know truth in this era of smoke & mirrors. Gaslighting has become our way of life. Hopefully, this time of “social reset” will bring clarity to all that, and we’ll see what is behind this haze passing over us. And indeed, there will be lots of long held back emotions being expressed in all kinds of ways, from all over the spectrum. To feel is the essence of human nature. No qualifiers on that!

  • furies, I’ve never paid anything I just watched all the free videos and workshops that I could find and did the work on my own. Had I needed help with the work I’d have paid for one of the more in depth workshops but I know how to do neural shifting and all that, so the validation and info was enough to get me started, opened up a healing path for this.

    But I think many of these are legit, these folks really do want to help others, we know what a challenging issue this is. The comments on these videos really show what a hidden issue this has been, as well, now coming to light in a significant way. This helps the world, the greater good, because it’s a big problem, this is more common than not and causes undue suffering, absolutely no need for this, screws everyone up simply to satisfy ONE person’s ego.

    Trust instincts as always of course but I’m glad to hear this is an awakening for you. This topic took me far, really undid a lot of my confusion and FINALLY the pattern stopped! I can see clearly now, huge relief! Keep going, you’ll be so glad you did.

  • Yes it’s all I’ve done for the past 10 years. My life is dedicated to helping people get on with their lives and also to circumvent the system if they want real and true healing. I operate in a new paradigm which I learned along the way and it was the game changer for me.

    After walking away from the system, I went back as a public speaker to expose the harms and made a film from within the system which was a platform for each of us to speak our truth about discrimination and harm done by these labels, for starters. We’ve all moved on to fulfill our goals and each one of us is doing things to help others, so it’s rippling which is enormously gratifying.

    I was making headway and doing day long workshops for system clients and staff (all in one room together, biggest group was 45 people) which were popular and controversial and got people to consider different perspectives and actually getting people to wake up, but I was eventually called out as a “radical who went against the system” and not allowed to do anymore, so I walked away and regrouped, started my own thing independently, still at it and growing.

  • I did an online workshop with Melanie, she’s the one who introduced me to this topic. She is excellent!

    Teal Swan posted a video recently about this called “Gaslighting (What is Gaslighting and How To Heal From It)” which some might find helpful, she covers quite a bit in 23 minutes–

    Honestly, I think this is the best topic to explore when it comes to our well-being. It’s the hidden beast in our society, what I’d call “a silent killer.” This kind of crazy-making abuse leads to suicide, easily, if we don’t wake up to it and do the healing work to address this.

  • “What I think we’re talking about here is people who are COMMITTED to negative and destructive behavior, people who genuinely believe that the best way to live is to be selfish and disingenuous and to mess with other people’s success and even their very sanity.”

    Yes, that is exactly what we’re talking about. Nightmare on Earth. How to stop this? would be my question. How do people get away with this, and keep going? How to fight against abuse is a problem in our society, given how we live in an abusive society. Sure is a head scratcher.

  • I’m talking about a much more sinister behavior, which would be part of a person’s relationship dynamic which they carry forward with everyone. Some people are so conditioned to being around this that they don’t notice it unless they wake up to what has been draining them for so long.

    Anyone can be a jerk, we’ve all been that at times. Especially when fighting and standing up to abuse, it seems natural to try to fight fire with fire, but that is only a downward spiral and lose/lose.

    An energy vampire is relentless in their need for control and overpowering others, and will not leave the scene without making a huge mess for innocent people, first, because they THRIVE on the pain of others, and second it feels powerful to an otherwise relatively powerless-feeling person, despite what they might project outward, like a costume. I’d say this behavior shows a lack of moral compass.

    This can be really bad news if that kind of person is in a position of power and authority, and that seems to be the norm nowadays. Why do we put up with it, continuously? It’s all of society participating in this, one way or another, until we don’t any longer.

  • Thank you for your transparency and very powerful truth-speaking, Robert. Tons of food for thought here, which I will sit with and process.

    I think the question of such paradigm shifts based on profound social and individual wounding will require what is more than likely beyond our thinking at this time, but it is not beyond our creative capacity. This is one time where the gut and heart will lead, has to be. Social transformation means changing how we experience reality, and that is not a bureaucratic or systemic issue. It is deeply personal and individual. Somehow, it has to work out in the whole, and that will be a matter of copacetic people coming together, first, how energy gathers in a harmonious way. Even 2 people who can work authentically, respectfully, and seamlessly together are more powerful than thousands of people in disarray. That would be a good start, to find that internalized harmony, first, then it can be created outside of ourselves to reflect the inner harmony.

    “Whatever happens, I’d like to avoid doing what people in our world have done for far too long and that is forming a circular firing squad.”

    Well put and great goal. I’ve been working in the capacity of activism and change for years, with regard to the “mental health” industry–which, admittedly, I have disdain for all of it, from my personal experience of it and then adding to that all that I’ve read and heard from others over the years. The big picture is very ugly. I’ve faced many a firing squad not only for my truth-speaking against the system, but even for how I talk about my healing! I’ve been offered alternative realities, people love to change my story to fit their need to stigmatize, judge, and project negatively. Gives you an idea JUST HOW BAD the problem is. Divide and conquer seems to have worked here.

    Fortunately, I got used to it and can now make a choice whether I want to face that or not. When I don’t, I enjoy the peace which my life has become after healing from this mess. That took decades and also, it took its toll, but it’s the contribution to change and transformation I feel best about (and I’ve produced a few other things, as well, over the years to challenge the system), because I rejected the entire field ultimately (I was a clincian as well as client, very dedicated to the field of “psychology”) and found my healing path far and away from that, which is not the same for everyone. Besides, when I have to say “I healed from pts from the mh field,” something is dreadfully wrong, at the very core of this, obviously!

    Our healing paths are unique, based on so many things about us, personally. For me, everything about the field of counseling psychology, including graduate school, was one big crazy abusive competetive mess, and terribly misinformed, at best. I found my path through other means more natural and energetic, healing spirit wounding, issues of betrayal and ambush, as well as physical damage. I did tons of neural shifting and strengthening my nervous system by thinking a bit better of myself than I had been. That was vital, and the opposite of what was happening in the therapist’s office. Somehow, powerlessness and dependence starts to creep into these relationships, especially if one has a label to begin with. It only goes down the rabbit hole from there.

    For me, my healing was deep work which was more an act of living and paying attention to myself, being open, flexible and humble to necessary changes within me, if I wanted to have a good quality of life and attract what I wanted from it.

    In addition, I am part of a group of practicing manifestors, whose intention it is to ground our light and build new things which will be sound, just, creative, and community well-being oriented, to expand light on this currently ailing and darkened planet of ours. That’s not easy because first we have to sort through our own shit in order to not make the same mistakes which were inflicted upon us, including “group think,” which is non-inclusive and non-expansive, poised to become dysfunctional, bullying, and marginalizing one way or another.

    This is not an easy task, but it is a highly creative endeavor to help bring in a new paradigm. So much unknown, so much uncertainty, kinda scary and very exciting. What choice do we have? We know what we don’t want, so we know what we do want. And we’re going for it.

  • “You now can’t call out narcissism as a moral ethical problem, because it’s been made into a medical personality disorder diagnosis that psychiatrists-psychologists claim only ‘they’ can ‘diagnose’.”

    Indeed, as I was writing my comment, I was aware of this irony but I didn’t bother to caveat. Using such common vernacular that people understand on a gut level can easily get confused with “non-medical medicalizing.” I also use the terms vampire or energy sucker or double binder. I’m sure in time we’ll have other terms before they become overused and co-opted, as the above have already, no doubt. This can certainly become a game of name calling, which makes me shudder. Kind of immature in and of itself, I’d say. I’ve certainly been guilty of this. It’s tough to articulate, but the feeling is powerful.

    None of these terms are very nice, but then again, we’re talking about people who can have a favorable public/social image, but in reality, whose insidious actions are seriously harmful to others. It can be covert and sinister. And even when this gets expressed and called out, it is not only vehemently denied, it is projected onto another and things only get worse from there. Tons of marginalizing happens this way, true injustice leading to chronic suffering.

    I could also say “deeply wounded people,” but that’s a lot of us, until we heal those wounds. And not everyone with deep wounds takes it out on others, but more so, they take it out on themselves while trying to be as nice to others as possible to specifically avoid the repetition, but that tends to backfire because it is not authentic and comes off as people pleasing. The change has to be internal before outer changes occur.

    When we do heal from having endured such a dynamic, which can only be transformative from what I can see, then we have no reason or desire to act that way any longer or to treat anyone at all with such dehumanizing disregard, which would be a HUGE relief to all of humanity! That would be the most crucial point for me.

    Thank you again for all of this, Magdalene, and for bringing this book and other works along this line, to the forefront. To me this is vital and more widespread that people realize (although I think people are starting to get this and wake up to it more and more), so it’s brilliant information right now, we need this awareness. This is my personal offering on the subject–

  • If you put “healing from narcissistic abuse” or “healing from narcissistic parents” in the YouTube search engine, pages and pages of videos will pop up with all kinds of different people talking about how they addressed and healed this, from their own experience. It’s not one size fits all, and this presents a variety of perspectives and options, based on how it resonates with different people.

    It can make all the difference to address this in ourselves and change these patterns of thinking based on shadow projection abuse. Our neurons are quite flexible and with focused practice, we can transform our thinking. That’s what changes reality because when we think differently, we notice different things and we also act differently, so as a result, we attract different things into our lives and experience, not repeating the past but instead, creating a new future. That’s how I’ve experienced it working and I’ve heard similar testimonials as the result of healing from this particular brand of abuse. It is literally life-changing, at the core.

  • Narcissistic abuse is so insidious and can be really hard to pinpoint as such in a society where it is the norm. This was the final stage of my healing, learning about this, and how to undo it. I learned from one source that we end up gaslighting ourselves as a result of being chronically misled, lied to, and reflected back negatively for the purpose of power and control (especially when it is from people who are supposed to be helping and supporting us), which I could relate to when I heard this, causing doubt and fear of consequences to lace just about every action and interaction. It’s really so very horrible! Causes such internal suffering.

    And yes, this is chronic within the “mental health” industry, in fact it is the foundation of it. The DSM is a book of gaslighting. Being labeled IS narcissistic abuse!

    THANK YOU SO MUCH for writing about this! I think it’s extermely relevant now given what is going on in the world. We’re all being gaslighted now, so this healing has tremendous value in present time if we cherish and are to preserve our freedom.

  • “Many of the you tubers I listen to are optimistic that the truth will prevail, and that this lockdown will aid in that necessary awakening. But I do know the systemic evil of the globalists is staggering and mind blowing. And awakening to the magnitude of their systemic crimes, is not easy. I’ve been researching into, and painting their systemic crimes for decades now, and I’m still appalled. Perhaps due to their lack of repentance.”

    Yep, you said it right, SE, exactly where I am. It’s like an ever-binding loop that needs to be broken. I’m sure it’s a work in progress, it’s being chipped away at by all of us one way or another, that’s what I believe in any event. Too many are awake to this shit now in all corners of life, but it’s a hard one because it can be a dangerous game to bust up abusive systems, it is not a game of surrender.

    I think one reason for the optimism is that issues are in our faces and up front in the light now, more and more coming, so we’re all kind of looking in the mirror at this point. With the systems falling apart, I wonder what can we do to consciously create forward away from what is proving failed, toward something much, much BETTER! A world in which anyone who chooses to can thrive without sabotage based on hate and fear. I believe now would be a good time to assess this, given what we’re learning as we go here. Everyday something new in this unfolding.

    That’s what I mean by this being a highly creative time, what we need most for transforming society into something sound, humane, and functional. It’s becoming more and more obvious that this is exactly what we don’t have (we knew, others are starting to get it), and I believe it’s what we’re craving as a collective (aside from the power-mongers). Keeping the faith, indeed, that we can focus this into being. I appreciate your truth and light energy around this, SE, thank you!

  • Someone Else, I believe this is the beginning of big changes, from that bigger picture perspective that I know we’ve talked about. There is tons of awakening to happen here. This global event is shaking it all up and it will affect everyone differently. Old systems and beliefs are being seriously challenged. That’s enough to change the world, one step at a time. As creative beings, we can do our part to make it a positive change. This is going to take stretching in thinking, taking us to new creative levels. This is my vision for the new paradigm. I think it’s time for artists to step forward in a big way.

  • This certainly could be the start of the most creative time for the world, and also supremely healing. Embracing uncertainty, finding calm in the storm (or better yet, BEING the calm in the storm), tuning in to one’s inner voice above and beyond outside chaos, practicing self-resourcefulness, trusting the process of change, etc. All kinds of energy swirling around now, with no clear focus or vision or expected outcome, it remains to be seen. This is transformation time!

  • All true and I agree, Steve, although I have a few specific people in mind–especially one psychiatrist– who totally took advantage of my vulnerability and trust at the time which led to consequences which I, in turn, had to heal and repair on my own, and which was still costly in many ways. This guy was brutal and looking back from a space of more clarity and without the dependence I’d been feeling at the time, to me it seems he was kinda crazy in a sinisterly narcissistic way. But if I wanted to work–and that was my only goal back then, to get back to work–I had no choice at that time but to see him because I was going through voc rehab.

    And while it’s not my style to wish ill on anyone, I can’t help but to take comfort in the phrase, “Karma’s a bitch.” That’s part of the drain with all this, creates all of this inner conflict. We try to be nice, but some people make that impossible, if we are to not be doormats (or vampire food!). I spoke my truth before ditching him but the consequences of his irresponsible words and insidious actions were far-reaching. I’m not sure they realize the harm they do with these projections. They sabotage quality of life, and in some cases, life itself. And yes, high earners for all this, to boot. It’s why we’ve been calling in change, this is a perfect example of “what is wrong with this picture?”

    “The “mental health” professions, at least at this time in our history, are seeming to be pretty much the opposite of enlightened.”

    I think that’s because there is no education for understanding our humanity other than life and no training for how to relate to others outside of experience. It is the *opposite* of academic and speculative. Life is what we experience as “real.”

    YES on abolition of course. I used to lean more toward reforming and improving things, but after all these years of processing this and learning of others’ experiences on here, and also from these dialogues and how I’ve experienced them, I simply cannot see reform as realistic or feasable at this point, from where I sit. Although how it will all end/transform is anyone’s guess and remains to be seen. Every system is being tested to the limit at this point, they are bursting at the seams.

  • Yes, the dynamic does repeat and it adds insult to injury, and that all has to be worked out somehow if one expects healing on this level. That’s hard inner work, doable but quite challenging. Shouldn’t have to be this way but right now the harm they do runs deep and until this stops, people can get stuck in the abyss created by this hellish system.

    However, for me there actually was one big difference: my family didn’t rob me blind like these vampires did, taking my money while disabling me with poison and then all out abuse and discrimination as I was trying to heal from the drugs toxicity. Fortunately I found what I needed to heal and get on with things, and I am generally a very forgiving person and I’ve got a pretty big heart, but it turns stone cold when I think about this horrific institution. Call me extreme, but I wholeheartedly believe it’s completely justified in this case, and totally reasonable. My experience with psychiatry–and, in fact, any tangent of the “mental health” inudstry–can be spelled out in one word: sabotage.

  • “I do hope that outlining my difference in approach will be of some use to those who want to see concrete improvements in culture and practice take place and lead to meaningful and substantial directions to reduce abuse, discrimination, and malpractice in a psychiatric world that is extremely dysfunctional.”

    How about ELIMINATING abuse, discrimination, and malpractice? Technically, it’s illegal but somehow, this industry gets away with it–which makes it systemic–and in fact most of us realize to what extent these provide the cornerstone of psychiatry, in practice. And when an industry is based on abuse and discrimination and dangerous misinformation, then how on Earth would it reform itself? How could it possibly learn to operate from and with integrity? That would take an entirely new paradigm of thinking, starting with extreme humility and self-responsibility.

    Is psychiatry capable of this? I’d venture to guess that it is not, that it is rather severely stuck in one extremely narrow way of thinking which is the core of “dysfunction.”

    So if they practice dysfunction, then this is what is being passed along to clients, how could it not be? Clients are expected to accomodate dysfunction, which only perpetuates not only anxiety and distress in individuals, but also social dysfunction at large. All this complicated and complex bureacracy to help humanity heal from trauma and abuse we’ve all been putting up with for way too long? I think not, that is beyond absurd and only adds to the confusion, overwhelm, and feelings of powerlessness, nothing else.

    Of course, they’d never admit to doing all of this extreme harm despite all kinds of protests of abuse and torture and extreme manipulation adding up to mind control, then they’d be admitting guilt and would owe their clients big time. But they have, and they do, that is truth. No way to get around that.

    Next step in change would be for psychiatrists to admit their wrongdoing and offer reparations. That would be just, honorable, and courageous, and would offer new hope to people. What exactly would the “reformation dialogue” be about, otherwise? Of course, they can keep lying, covering up, and projecting their guilt onto clients and perpetuating abuse, discrimination and malpractice. It’s a choice.

  • I think the shared distress is mass gaslighting, which would merit a new level of discernment, aka expanded consciousness. Everyone will have their own truth of the matter and is entitled to their own reality by choosing a perspective from which to experience it. Respect and appreciation for the inherent and natural diversity of humanity will put an end to oppression.

  • I did want to add that of course we are all human and far from perfect. We all make mistakes in order to learn from them and do better as we go along, growing in self-awareness. And we all have the capacity to self-forgive and to make postive changes from within that will translate into an improved world. Keyword: ALL.

  • Sometimes parents can be so self-absorbed and needy, a kid can grow up believing they are responsible for others at their own sacrifice. Some households can practice toxic, marginalizing dynamics based on all kinds of judgments and prejudices, and become very unsafe for some children, so they grow up in chronic fear and anxiety, feeling as though they don’t belong anywhere, and that can turn into living with chronic terror and dread. How parents respond to life issues, problems and crises is how a child learns by example.

    It’s usually not simply the pattern of communication that is the issue but more so what beliefs are behind negative communication, and how this influences what a child grows up believing about themselves and the world, based on the parents’ influence. If the child is particularly senstive and can pick up energy easily (which many children are like this and grow up to become very intuitive adults), then they will more than likely carry within them any unexpressed or unresolved conflict until it is acknowledged what the root cause of this is or it will persist. In order to solve a problem, it is important to know the root of it and address it as such. Real and true change (aka healing) is made at the core, not topically.

    Last thing someone who is healing needs is denial of how their childhood environment plays a role in shaping their self-image and self-regard. I believe that is universal. Not all parents have a “parental instinct.”

  • You have really captured it boans, these are the dilemmas and considerations in healing from social abuse, and it’s not an easy picture. Change and transformation are messy, like the eggs breaking to make the omelette. Trusting our own selves and how our process guides us is where we can feel safer as we go. We’re all uncertain of the future, that’s universal.

    “My ‘faith’ has wavered much over the past 9 years, going from absolute to wondering why my God would allow such things to occur. And yet then I realise it is a test of integrity that is being applied to these people,”

    Yep, for all of us, so here’s our opportunity to follow that light and it will be a better path, uplifting and clearer. That’s my belief and vision, in any event, and my experience so far. It helps to connect with what we truly believe and walk that talk, then we’re in synch with ourselves and we move forward with greater ease.

    “and they are failing miserably.”

    Oh yeah, the corruption is a runaway train, let them wrestle with it. They have to hit rock bottom (whatever that is, scary to think about) before waking up and it will be a rude awakening for them. That’s what happens when it is not voluntary. We do have a choice to embrace change or to resist it. The latter choice makes it much, much harder to navigate, of this I’m certain. I’d recommend *allowing* change, that is more ease than not. They’re resisting it, so they will have problems, but that is their awakening, so it’s quite just.

    “What will be the eventual consequence of that failure?”

    At some point, it has to turn on them, as more and more of us “scapegoats” wake up and stop feeding the vampires and claim our personal sovereignty. I believe that is our birthright, but we were born into oppression, so we have to untie that Gordion Knot ourselves. That’s a hard one, albeit doable, this is not new. Although I do believe that IS the point of all this. Walking away from energy drainers such as these is where we begin to connect with our own power–and a bit more inner peace in the process because anxiety lowers from empowerment–and then we can get acquainted with ourselves on much better terms. Makes all the difference what we believe about ourselves.

  • “They want us to fear THEIR enemies. And their enemies just happen to be US.”

    Ah, yes, got it. Wow, that is keen analysis, boans, and on point. This is what we don’t want to buy into, that’s a terrible and self-sabotaging program.

    “The illnesses being caused by the destruction of the planet by psychotic corporations…”

    Yes, I agree, that is my truth, too. And what community of origin fosters the people who run such corrupt industries that are sabotaging global society? There is a root to every issue.

  • “I’ve spoken up and no one wishes to listen here. They turned me away because someone went to the trouble of fabricating false records, and no one wishes to check them because they prefer the lies.”

    This really touches me, boans, I have this story, that statement could come from me, too. This applies to the super bureaucratic “mental health/social services” network where I got caught up in what you describe and battled it up and down for years in all kinds of ways legal and creative. And it also applies to at least a couple of members of my family, from whom I need to keep a distance if I want sanity in my life. I do come from a gaslighting family, unfortunately, doesn’t make me happy to say this and I had to heal tons from it as I spoke the hardest truth ever and set the firmest boundaries ever. Those were my choices to make and I followed through. Made me stronger, I felt the clarity, but I also felt sad for a while, then I felt free. Whew, that’s what I was waiting for, and it happened.

    The system did it all over again and I’ve spoken my truth repeatedly. I’ve made impacts here and there, I do know this. After I take my actions, I cannot control what happens after that, other than in what direction I choose to go from there. Everyone has free will, to do good or to be an ass.

    Yes, they’d prefer the lies because the truth is a mirror to them they do not like and will not accept at all cost, it would be too painful for them, too much self-judgment would fall on them. Sadly, that’s their right to resist truth, and we’re only beating our heads against the wall when we argue with deniers and liars.

    When I say trust the path of integrity, what I mean is that we can do better by not being like that, by being straight up, which it seems to me that you totally are.

    As far as “the riches and the freedom” go, well, I’m still on my way, too. But I think the potential to be richer and freer would actually come from being a victim of systemic bullshit than being a perpetrator of it. A perprator is really missing some of their moral compass, and that’s a hard awakening which I do not envy.

    Those of us on the scapegoated end are inherently humble, we’ve been humbled plenty and we feel it, I know that. I think there is power in that, precisely because we are in our integrity. If we can feel that, perhaps we’ll see it reflected outside of us, somehow.

    I don’t know, this IS my practice, I’m very conscious of this as I’ve been dealing with it most of my life, and it got worse as I was an adult, leading to lots of hard awakenings and freeing myself from double-binding toxic relationships. I was raised on this, so I had to do deep, deep deprogramming from what I grew up believing, and disover my own truth, so that I at least had the CHOICE to live by my integrity! That was the hugest shift ever, kinda surreal for a while. It’s a new world when we heal from abuse.

    I’ve been seeing the outer changes in bits and pieces, have had plenty of good evidence over the years. Then things can get wonky again, not sure if things are getting better. Then something happens to bring me back into trust, seeing movement happen. The world is dense, changes can take a while to show up!

    But that’s where I’m at with all this. I’ve gone in and out of doubt a lot, that’s human. But the light does keep showing up and showing up and showing up. And as long as that’s the case, I have hope and even optimism. Sometimes I can even achieve a feeling of certainty! That feels great. Then it can ebb again. It’s a flow of energy.

    As long as I see manifestation along the way and feel better than before, then I know I’m on track. I just keep looking forward, not back. Definitely the key to healing and change. It’s not behind us, it’s right in front of us.

  • Thank you for the honor, boans, I appreciate your saying this and I’m glad it speaks to you. And of course I do understand the rage, boy do I, that’s a most reasonable response to this crap. But I think as we gain more and more clarity, we have the option to make changes internally, right there, as it seems you are doing, and new light shines on the other side of this. Changes will happen on the outside, too, to reflect the internal changes. It’s a most fascinating process, and powerful in its ability to drive change from the inside.

    Interesting, too, I happened to give a lengthy response this morning to your comment with the Dr. Strangelove quote, you inspired me with that one. It’s still in the moderating queue, I guess is will show up soon. Kind of goes hand in hand with this post, regarding internal changes. Good synchronicity!

  • That’s an enlightening quote, boans, and a brilliant film! However, most honestly, I’m not out to create fear in anyone, that is never my intention and would go against my values. My work in the world is to help bring clarity and relief to people, not more chaos, although we most often have to move through some chaos in order to find relief and clarity, that would be the unearthing and integrative process of healing.

    Truth can be hard to hear and accept sometimes, but it is necessary if we are to live with any kind of peace in the world. Even recognizing hard truths in ourselves is freeing, although it may be uncomfortable for a moment, but that passes as we integrate our own light and shadow. To me that is the natural healing process. I see that as growth and evolution in consciousness. I believe this is the path toward inner peace, which is the ultimate healing, total relief from stress. Inner peace is the most natural anti-anxiety that exists, and allows all truth to come to light because we do not fear it, if we are in our own personal light and know our peace.

    Truth is light, which is more of an empowering feeling rather than one of fear, because it is clear and unamibiguous, so we can move forward from that. I think what we fear is our own self-judgment, which can be harsh, so we give ourselve permission to feel what we feel and be who we are, no reason to be so damn hard on ourselves! I had to integrate tons of self-judgment in order to heal from chronic anxiety, and feel self-compassion. That is self-soothing, and I become my own best friend as opposed to being my own worst enemy.

    So really, I guess I’d say our enemy is ourselves if we are in fear and self-judgment, whereas we CAN choose to be our most powerful support and self-healer.

    Fear comes from our own interpretation of events and experiences when we feel and perceive ourselves to be powerless. We end up worrying about everything, and that is chronic stress. I’ve also heard “worry” described as “praying for that which you don’t want.” We tend to manifest that on which we most focus, regardless of whether it is from our desire or our fear. I’d prefer a better feeling and to focus on that which I DO want, rather than to dwell on that which makes me feel fear, worry, and resentment. That will only create more of the same, that’s a law of nature, from what I understand.

    Moreover, I think that the impulse to “attack” is already driven by core fears. Mainstream fears shadow, while many of us are accustomed to it. I’d say we have the advantage, because we are in our truth. I own my stuff every day, I’ve made amends for my errors and misjudgments and I continue to as I go along, to stay on a path of integrity, allowing myself to be human while striving to be the best I can be.

    I’ve faced myself in the mirror repeatedly, as I believe many of us on here have. No one is perfect, far from it. Humans aren’t supposed to be perfect, that would go against nature. Life is school, we learn as we go–hopefully!

    Those who attack innocent people have plenty to fear from within their own selves. People change when they feel it is in their best interest, not in the best interest of others. I wish fear on no one, only truth and the empowerment of humility. Being human is inherently humbling, and it’s also incredibly creative. The combo of these is power. Everyone on the planet has the potential to own their personal power and not be afraid of shadow or the unknown. Were everyone to take that level of responsbility for themselves and stop attacking people for their truth, the world would be mightily uplifted and so much of this craziness would cease. That’s my vision, in any event.

  • “Most DSM “bible” believers are a part of a vast system of bullying, defamation, and neurotoxic poisoning.”

    Exactly right, this is the truth distilled perfectly. The big three, working together doing soooo much harm, obviously, what else would come from these? By now it’s an embedded program, nature of the beast. This cannot go on forever without self-sabotaging consequences.

    To these horribly misguided and toxic systems, psychiatry and its ilk: Please stop hurting people. You are hurting people terribly, repeatedly. We keep telling you, we keep providing evidence of our truth, and you will not listen, you will not believe, you will not acknowledge. Regardless, please stop, stop, STOP! Turn a new leaf, own your mistakes, make amends, and move forward in a new light. However it occurs, it must. We will all be better for it, win/win.

    We’re ALL human and we all make mistakes. There’s a lot of growth and healing in owning and correcting the error of our ways. Everyone goes through it one way or another. It’s called waking up, and growing up. Be brave.

  • Yeah, I agree, no mincing of words when it comes to truth-speaking about corruption. i know from experience that saying this to their face is useless, only creates retaliation and shuts down communication. When one says this about their peers, however, it has credibility that the victims of corruption are robbed of, as per the stigma of these labels and the social identity they perpetuate. All voices matter, but some are heard above others–or at least responded to above others, or taken more seriously than others, or some such thing. Hard to say what is actually being heard.

  • You just perfectly illustrated the gaslighting which occurs readily in this industry, as standard practice. That is psychological torture and will do more harm than anything, leaving people confused, disoriented and feeling powerless because there is no truth to this, they are totally shadow projections. I believe this is how the DSM is used as a tool for justifying these projections. It is insidious, oppressive, and supremely toxic, hurts people at the core to have their humanity so blatantly invalidated like that, especially after being provoked.

    These are wounds that cut deep, can really mess a person up until they wake up to the abuse and walk away from it. That can take a while to realize how draining this is, if one is vulnerable to such negative mirroring and feedback.

    Even after all these years of being awake to how this works, it’s still mind-boggling to me that the “mental health” industry causes such profound psychological distress with these common practices of labeling and shaming emotions! The irony is over-the-top tragic. Such damage being done every day with this shit, makes me shudder.

  • Wow, this is the most direct and powerful condemnation of psychiatry and psychatirsts that I’ve ever seen coming from within the industry. Thank you for your brave and unambiguous truth-speaking, may it ripple far and wide. I’m sure I’ll be sharing this blog.

    One thing–I do feel it is important to give hope for healing, regardless of anything. I was on polypharmacy for 19 years until coming off of them systematically and intuitively, and now I’ve been 19 years off, exact same amount of time. It was often quite rough, scary, extremely painful, and totally uncertain, but in the end, with diligence, trust, and persistence, I found my healing, thank God.

    While I was on the drugs, I wasn’t exactyly a “zombie,” and in fact I worked full time, went to school got 2 degrees, and had a seemingly “normal” (mainstream) life, albeit with symptoms I was always trying to manage, caused by the drugs themselves, it turns out.

    Years later, following various changes in the drugs, I did eventually discover they’d been eroding me from the inside all along. My organs were out of balance and my mind became foggy. This is while I was in grad school, suddenly, things went south, and it had been happening slowly all along. It was quite a dilemma for me because of what I was taught to believe about myself and about the medical profession, including psychiatry. My father was a physician, so I thought any Dr. should be listened to, “for my own good,” that a “professional” would know more about me than I did. That’s the programming, and it’s quite misleading, to the point of danger, obviously, what you are warning us about.

    I chose to break the programming and do what was good and right for me, and that was surprisingly challenging, to discern between my own voice and the stigmatizing voices that came directly from psychiatry and the mh AND social services systems, at large. It’s all part of the systemic bullying, from my experience, like poisonous tentacles to psychiatry. Such an utterly limited perspective of humanity, along with their own double binds, as per funding issues, and where the finanical power is. As long as that rules, we’re in trouble.

    Most fortunately and thanks to good healing, I finally cleared my head of the static and learned to integrate my true nature into my life experience. That’s how I found my real voice, and my freedom, and they are mine to own now, which is incredible to me, a miracle, considering I’d felt totally doomed and hopeless on more than a few occasions, and it was profound, really dark. I kept going, and the light did show up, finally.

    And that is my message to anyone who has been through this, as I have.

    Thank you again, very much appreciated.

  • People with authoritarian personalities have fears, too, namely 1) the truth 2) abandonment and 3) independently-minded people. There are many ways to disempower abusers and break a dysfunctional system, but one does have to be aware and cautious. Triggering the fear of an abuser can cause chaos within a dysfunctional community.

  • I think the “enemy” is fear, and that has the potential to attach itself to anyone at all who has not owned their shadow and instead is in the habit of projecting it outward. Not everyone does this, but many people do.

    Abusers and corruption both depend on others to fear them, and to identify with these projections, that they are powerless, especially if they have no money. Without that, were people to not buy into this, then such a system would not be able to survive, and in fact, I’m sure it would crash. That’s a matter of individual healing and raising awareness around programmed beliefs vs. what is real and true for each of us.

    We have a choice to NOT be fearful and to not take on the shadow projections, but instead, to know our power of truth and to feel that as our sense of self. Completely disempowers abuse, corruption, projections, etc.

  • BE the change you want to see in the world.

    Double binds are opportunities to expand our awareness and shift perspective to a bigger, more universal picture. Breaking a corrupt system requires truth, otherwise one is FEEDING the corruption. Expect systemic bullying, stigmatizing projections, public shaming, biased censorship, word-twisting, gaslighting, and cutting off your money supply, it’s all part of the arsenal when corruption is threatened. You are not alone.

    And if you are in your truth, you are in your power. If you know that, the money thing is not a problem, it will resolve itself. Hardest program to cut through, but I’ve learned this from experience. I’ve been in this position quite a few times and have leaped forward in all ways each time I have faced it with truth, and particularly toward peace of mind and general well-being. Truth is a healer.

    Speak up or walk away and don’t look back, trust the path of integrity. You’ll sleep better at night because you will be in synch with yourself. Living the truth of our spiritual values carries far more weight than money because it is abundance which cannot be threatened and taken away, and from that we can manifest anything we need or want, from a healed heart, which brings the courage of trust and faith. It is an inherent part of who we are.

    And there are the riches and the freedom, they go hand in hand in expanded consciousness. It is true abundance, from the inside, and it is robust. No double binds or compromise, and you have individuated from corruption, which means–and this is important–that you have weakened it, you have taken away from its power because you are not giving up yours to them, out of fear, which is their fuel. Refuse to be their pawn by knowing where your power is in this situation, and use it. That is being the example of change.

    Break the system. Trust the process. It’s the only way.

  • I’d totally love that and I just sent Steve an email to forward to you so you can write me. I’ve seriously been thinking the same thing. I was picking up that we were evolving together, here, really cool. I look forward to hearing from you and continuing this! Hugs back 🙂

  • johnchristine, I do not believe that Melissa’s gesture falls into this category, she is being inclusive, she makes these cards for everyone. The marginalizer in this story is the nurse at the desk who is not allowing light to get into the psych unit, she is intentionally blocking positive energy from getting to “certain people.”

    I’d call her a gatekeeper to the system, she is protecting and supporting it at the front lines, doing the shaming. It’s covert and where the problem is most obviously visible, especially because it is her job, she gets paid for this and it is supported by her colleagues and work culture. Makes it systemic.

    This is exactly why I think this article is brilliant: it’s an example of sharing love from one’s heart, and exactly how that gets cut off from some people, based purely on prejudice, which leads to dismissiveness, which in turn leads to non-deservedness along with feelings of lack and unworthiness. Obviously, that’s incredibly and profoundly harmful for people! It’s totally dehumanizing and despiriting, the essence of these.

    And I agree that restorative justice is exactly what we seek and should tolerate nothing less. When I talk about forgiveness, I’m talking more on a personal level, heart to heart. When it comes to corrupt institutions and social abuse, “forgiveness” would be on a different scale (like forgiving a debt), and is an option for people. But it won’t be everyone’s choice, and that seems reasonable to me.

    When it is institutional, it is about our society and humanity on the whole, how we are being influenced, by what social model? Obviously, we need repair here–even radical change–but where to begin?

    What this article highlights is a good place to start, to realize and become aware of where truth and light are being blocked, and break through or dissolve those blocks, somehow. Melissa is calling this out, which I applaud because that’s where we begin, the light is now shining on the most visible aspect of the problem, it is unmistakable here.

    These blocks are stubborn because gatekeepers will become irrational and deceitful to protect their turf, but it is where I would put my focus if we want truth to come to light, once and for all. I believe justice would follow, it would certainly be my hope. And it stands to reason that once truth comes to light, justice can be served. When the light shines brightly, it exposes the hidden shadows. Can’t help it, that’s the nature of light.

  • Ok, well, this whole thing makes me sad but it is what it is. Truth isn’t always easy, but it does shine a light. I believe that IS for the greater good, regardless of anything. My best to you.

  • I just don’t think it’s a comparable situtation. Other than that, not sure what a “correction” would look like in this case. Regardless, as always I appreciate hearing your truth. It’s not the same as mine, and I think that’s ok. I believe we can disagree peaceably and move on from all this, and that is for the greater good because no one’s truth is cast aside. It’s why I love the title of this blog, which, in and of itself, is a powerful truth to live by and practice.

  • I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to convey to Bonnie in a post once how she influenced me so signficantly, after she wrote in a comment to someone that “we are here to discover what it means to be human.” A light bulb went on and it so directly and unambiguously gave me the broadest perspective possible, I felt it ring through me. Changed the direction of my path and life work, I’ll be forever grateful.

    RIP Bonnie, you have been a supreme example of and to humanity, indeed, with your courageous heart, shining spirit, and exceptionally brilliant mind. Condolences to family and friends, Bonnie is so obviously beloved by many, and for good reason.

  • I was surprised to see this here but I do hear you and thanks for speaking your truth, Rosalee. In honor of the giving and receiving theme of this blog, I’d say forgiveness is one of the greatest gifts we can offer to ourselves and to other human beings, to humanity in general. I think it’s most practical, too, given that we are trying to bring more loving kindness, support, and safety to the planet, and that is not easy in a rough world, to maintain that.

    No one is perfect and we all have growth potential here that at least will start to provide this planet with a bit more light, which is what we’re all trying to bring in our own way, so people will NOT suffer so readily, the world can become less stressful. Forgiveness is an energy that is one way to bring light and uplift the collective.

    It is not to excuse or allow abuse, not in the slightest and that should be a given as far as I’m concerned, and indeed things do need to change. We’re all part of that process, it’s a collective issue, the whole world is involved in this.

    But forgiveness does acknowledge that we are all human and in a process of healing, growth and evolution. Permission to make mistakes should be allowed if they are corrected and not repeated. How else do we learn and grow?

    I love the title of this blog, Cast Aside No One. I’d love to see that vision manifest in the entire world, if at all possible. Call me crazy, sure wouldn’t be the first time. And if that’s crazy, then I am happy to be. I know I’m not alone, not by a long shot!

  • Thank you for speaking your truth with your story of healing and soul growth. It’s very inspiring, moving, and elegantly written.

    I had the dubious honor of withdrawing after 19 years on polypharmacy, culimating in 9 during that final year, which almost killed me. This was right after grad school and I was living in a big city, so life was complicated at that moment. I finally said enough of this crap, it had made me so sick, and I finished my tapering from all that 19 years ago, so I’ve now had equal times on the drugs and off of them. The difference is beyond night and day, it is astounding.

    I had no model for this, no one around me had done this or had heard of “coming off meds” and I was surrounded mostly by cynics and naysayers. But I did stand my ground on this, and one way or another I was always shown the next step, it would show up for me and the path would be clear, and I’d walk through one door or another, moving forward.

    I was brain (and other organs) damaged at the time from them, not clear on what I needed, terribly self-conscious, severely insomniac, extremely fearful and in grief that my life and well-being seemed to have been ruined forever, and I was not at all well-connected to my inner voice, not on a conscious level. I was also foggy, nervous, and very shaky, could hardly speak above a whisper and my head was filled with scary junk. My body was rebelling in about every way possible, felt as though it had completely turned against me. But somehow, I managed to find my healing by integrating all kinds of things spiritual and natural, similar to what you describe, to heal on a mind/body/spirit level. Can’t have one without the others.

    Chinese medicine was particularly supportive and effective–acupuncture, herbs, and I practiced Qi Gong as well, joined a group and it was amazing how healing this was for me. Learning who I was as a spirit in a human body is what changed everything, that particular relationship between me and me.

    I did have one healer in particular who pointed me in the exact right direction, starting with grounding, and that led to other things, and overall it was a wild ride where I learned all kinds of things about our human nature which I wish I’d known long before this, would have saved me heaps of trouble had I been raised on truth rather than programming. I really had to wake up, then wake up again, then again and again. Lots of awakening on a healing path, it can be a hard process, but it’s rich with lots of moments of awesomeness. Good support is invaluable during these times.

    I made it fine and it’s all behind me now, I’ve tranformed it all via my healing and live with new energy now, a whole new life and world for me. I know it is possible to get past this all, certainly takes hard work, new perspectives to apply, and a lot of transformation. Also takes flexibilty in thinking and a lot of humility, ascending the ego. I call it “an adventure in healing.” My complex journey led me to be in service to others, I found my life path and soul purpose this way.

    “I pray for a rich life, away from the fear of job insecurity, coercive medicine, and false labels.”

    Freedom is our birthright and natural state of being. Trust your inspiration and it will guide you there. And so it is.

  • Props, Melissa, I think this was a really valuable discussion, relevant to all of humanity. I work with energy (as per my healing path) and that’s what this is all about–how we exchange energy amongst each other. One way or another, we “relate,” and it is the energy of this “relating” that defines the quality of it, and it is felt and can be subtle and hard to articulate.

    I also believe this is what we’re looking to tweak, right beneath the surface of our actions, and it will make all the difference. It’s good self-exploration for us all and will help us refine our own energy and focus. It’s how we grow.

    I think every voice here was heard and respected and all perspectives have come to light. I’ve certainly done a lot of self-reflecting in addition to having taken action. I like this topic and take it to heart, how we extend our light to others. You’ve shown nothing but grace and humility and openness in the process, in all authenticity, true leadership.

    And your story in this blog is so revealing, you noticed the exact right thing (imo, at least), and your final words from it, “not on my watch,” are very poignant. To me that is your spirit, and it rings very true. You obviously are a visionary.

    Fabulous work here, and I mean that! I look for stuff like this. I’m very moved, and grateful. We teach and learn by example! This will ripple far and wide, as per your truest intention and heart’s desire. I have no doubt.

  • I don’t want to be all over this blog but just as an aside, I can’t help but to notice that there are interesting issues surfacing here regarding giving and receiving. This is an important aspect of our collective because it is how energy flows between us. Giving is fulfilling to the giver when it comes from the heart. If it’s neither satisfying to or welcome by the receiver, a simple no thank you would communicate that directly and graciously.

    I do understand the dynamic of “giving as charity” in a “do-gooder” and marginalizing way. In Kabbalah, that is called “giving bread of shame,” and it is, sadly, real in this world, and oh yes, it is felt. But aside from that sinister dynamic, I’d say that overall, to give is an act of faith, and to receive is an act of generosity. Both require kindness.

  • “If we could all let our light shine just a little brighter, imagine the possibilities…”

    This bears repeating, thank you kindredspirit.

    This is not to anyone in particular because it happens often, but my general question here is, when will the absolute truth that “we are all in this together” actually register as the reailty which it is? Bringing light and love to the world should not have to be an act of courage from fear of reproach but I thank GOD for brave people. I know from experience that it is so not fun to open your heart to help and inspire others and then get slammed for it in return, for any reason, that’s about as dispiriting as it gets. Do we want a better, kinder, more generally supportive world or not? EVERYONE is responsible for this!

    Melissa’s work is inspiration, that’s a gift to world, by example, and we need as much of that as we can muster right about now.

  • Thanks, Melissa, and totally back atcha! Imagine if we each made an intention to do this, say, once a week, or even once or twice a month. Not to force it, but to notice opportunities to make a difference in someone’s life in a small way. I bet the universe would respond happily, and create those opportunities for us. That’s exactly how it felt when the opportunity arose from me, yesterday, as if the universe heard my heart after reading your article. When it is truly our heart’s desire to be giving, I believe the universe will provide us with plenty of opportunities to fulfill ourselves this way. Win/win. Can’t have enough of that these days!!

  • “the more time I spend loving myself and others, the less time I spend in fear or anxious or despairing. It’s definitely a shift in perspective.”

    That’s it! Thank you, always, kindredspirit, for your encouragement and for your crystal clarity. I know you are a light and a healer as well, I’ve said this often on here.

    This has been some journey to get to this, but this is absolutely the crux of it, from what I’ve been able to gather, THE healing. I so understand it is not easy sometimes, but once we get it, it does get easier I think, because it becomes our new familiar, based on good feelings because we are perceiving the unity of spirit over the illusion of separation (ego, competition, us vs. them, etc). That is love triumphing over fear.

    That’s the self-healing, choosing to focus on that which we love, enjoy, feel moved by– feeling those feelings and practicing them with conscious focus. And indeed, it is our most natural anti-anxiety, we soothe ourselves from the inside, simply from choosing how we focus and practicing it deliberately.

    That’s our power, and really and truly, it is based on love, it’s not abstract when we actually feel it. And indeed, this will elicit new thoughts, new inspiration, and new manifestation. How could it not? And there is core change, right there.

    Were we all to practice this, the world would change with such greater ease because we are changing from the inside, it is organic not forced. Our physical cells respond to these feelings, and it can only ripple outward, that is nature. Giving and receiving love is the path we’re wanting to access, and that will allow energy to flow, which is where we find all the good stuff, including greater ease in life, which I cherish.

    That is exactly mind, body, and spirit synchroncity. Healing and manifesting are rather breezy once we’ve achieved that. There’s always something to master, that’s the fun of life, I think.

    And I learned this to overcome the effects of the psychiatric scapegoating game. I became a scapegoat even among “peers” at one point, when my healing really took off. So I got on everyone’s shit list during this time and got “the treatment,” as I was trying to recover from all this and create my way forward. It was maddening all over again, but practicing unconditional self love saved my life this time, and I was finally able to get out of that loop.

    Now I can love others–and life–unconditionally, although I continue to discern what is good vs. what is not so good for me, which is how I practice self-love. We’re all human, even our perceived “enemies,” (I don’t like that word, but to make a point). Work in progress!

    Relationships are never easy, but they should at least be fulfilling and enriching, and definitely not draining! For me, it’s a co-creatorship, and that can only be based on mutual love & respect to have any value in the world.

  • Psychiatry made me hate myself and inspired me to fear life as well as to dread my future, so every action I took came from these beliefs, consciously or unconsciously. And, in fact, I could not take much action because these chronic feelings led to spiritual and emotional paralysis. Whatever actions I did manage to take from this perspective, it amounted to self-sabotage.

    To heal the suffering which this was causing, I had to learn to love myself again (which meant calling out abuse in the moment and walking away from it, radical self-care, and trusting my inner voice and intuition over any dissenting opinion of others), which I believe is our natural state of being before it becomes corrupt with negative projections and internalized oppressive self-beliefs (starts early!), and then to embrace life from a new perspective, that of the soul, which, in essence, is everything. That allowed me to shift my beliefs into one more aligned with spiritual awareness, which encompasses the entirety of our existence, rather than merely the physical aspect of it, which is miniscule in the bigger picture. We can choose to see spirit in others, and that is a whole new perspective on humanity, and we can feel this in our hearts because it is where we are universally connected.

    There is so much more to us than meets the eye, and that’s where love is clear, profound, and abundant, and creativity is limitless. Embracing and learning our multi-dimensionality is to gift ourselves with integral awareness, and that is truly powerful, from the heart. Radical shift in perspective would mean radical shift in the world, unfolding into a heart and spirit based reality. This is what gets my vote, and my attention.

  • If I’m adding to the problem, the universe will reflect this back to me unambiguously. So far, that’s not even nearly the case, evidenced in my own life and relationships, and all the feedback I get with my work with others. I accept constant feedback, to make sure we are on track together and I am not taking anything for granted. Mutual authentic mirroring is vital to core healing.

    I do work every day on myself, change from day to day, to actually embody change. And I am aware of what I put into the collective, that’s my responsbility, to have that awareness, if I am, indeed, sincere in my desire to support radcal change in the world, toward heart and spirit consciousness. That is light.

    And I do walk my talk, it’s kind of my trademark with all that know me well, I make a point of it and I do catch myself when I am in dissonance with myself and work to amend that. Otherwise, I would not know transformational healing, that would be impossible. I’m also human and have my way less than perfect moments, who doesn’t? We all do the best we can and hopefully grow as we go, in all humility. But I believe as we get older, we have many opportunities to refine our focus. So anything we practice for a while, we become better at it, including living life.

    Of course I’ve come to terms with our collective “brokenness,” I went through the system, myself, exhaustively, wearing all kinds of hats and learning different perspectives of this from my experience. I also live consciously in the world, my head is not in the sand. I know more sad, angry, fearful people than not. I know that state of being-ness from within myself at one time, and to me it does have feelings attached to it, and what it feels to me is really bad, terrible in fact, and exhausting. It’s all anxiety, purely.

    Although, I honestly don’t see any individual at all as broken, in fact, simply “in progress,” as are we all. Society is broken because it cannot support its own people, but that’s a question of embedded programs and corrupt norms based on a lot of lies we’ve been fed and blatant manipulation of our psyches.

    The important thing is to define ourselves, though. If someone tells me they are broken and they don’t want any argument about it, then I wouldn’t argue. But I would feel strongly compelled to explore that belief, were this a client. That’s where healing is, to my mind, so if that is objectionable to a person, then they would not be my client. I’d always be at odds with the perception that they are “broken.” I just can’t get myself to see individuals that way. So I guess there is some paradox here, which is good, I’d expect this. Maybe there’s new info on the horizon here, that’s usually what paradox indicates.

    I’ve worked on this, to create a better inner reality for myself, and it has translated outside of myself. I can only hope for those ripples to continue, but it is up to each individual how they address, respond to, and deal with anything. I don’t believe in “right” vs. “wrong” here, it’s a matter of where we are and what choices we can perceive. People walk in their own skin, not that of others. I can only do my part in my own life, intending to be as kind, supportive, self-caring, and authentic as I know how, and to speak my truth as clearly, directly, and transparently as possible.

    I don’t consider the reality of “death” as “being doomed.” What I mean by doomed is asking about whether or not you–or anyone–believe that life can at all become a pleasant, safe, joyful and creative experience as opposed to the toxic mess it is now. I believe in energy transformation, not everyone does or understands this. Been part of my studies and work in the world for over 15 years now, and I apply this every day. I asked it sincerely, although my phrasing may have been cliched so I apologize if I came across as flippant, certainly not my intention.

    However, if the world is divided up between those who have hope and optimism, despite how reality is at present, and those who do not, I would like to know, I think that’s important information, to know that truth about where people stand. I feel no judgment here whatsoever, it’s simply a discernment in beliefs, and I think it matters as far as energy goes. What we believe in our hearts is what drives our thinking, and all of this does make a difference in outcome of reality, I’m sure of this.

    Still, your truth is clear, powerful and strong, and I absolutely respect it and you for speaking it, so I, for one, am glad you are on the planet. Otherwise, this dialogue would not be happening, and I’m enjoying it and learning a lot from it. We’re going deep here and I’m feeling more clarity as we go. Perhaps others are reading and getting some new information for themselves that is helpful to their process.

    You are so right that negativity and positivity ebb and flow, the light and shadow of life and humanity. That’s our wholeness, right there. We cannot create without contrast, it all matters and has value to our evolution. I go into negative states at times, that is human, and I address it head on, as I do, doing inner work and seeing where my thinking is at that moment, and how to change it, and then what actions I might be able to take to improve the situation. For me, that’s vital to my consistent well-being and I want to feel my own power in this, not powerless to society. That creates too much anxiety, and we can overcome this. That would be the whole point of activism, to my mind.

    But overall, indeed, I live in a positive light. That way, I do not feel or perecieve myself to be broken, I would not identify with that state of being, as I once would have, wondering if I’d ever feel differently, fearing I would not ever feel whole again. And at one very dark time in my life, I was convinced I was permamently damaged goods, feeling completely dehumanized and hopelessly damaged by psych drugs and the horrific withdrawal, and I took self-sabotaging action. Having barely survived this gave me hope. I had visions in my near-death experience, information, which I followed up on and it all has served me miraculously well.

    That was 18 years ago, and today I am an entirely different person with a grounded and balanced life, and back to feeling love, and understanding things on such a deeper level now, I can’t even conceive of wanting to die before having lived the best life I possible could, toward fulfillment. I love the challenge now, and figuring out how to get through obstacles and finding new pathways of hope and possibilities. I believe that is never-ending, so much to learn!

    I am the same spirit I’ve been throughout my life, I know my sense of self, but I’m a very different human being now that I am in life with new and simplified neural pathways, a vastly strengthened nervous system, and new light in my physical cells, all due to having learned how to transform energy with our will and heart consciousness.

    I would really enjoy seeing more of this in the world, this kind of transformational healing, but it’s not easy based on how it requires us to be flexible in our beliefs. For me, it was either that or die a broken man, and I spent some time teetering between these two potential outcomes, where one was far more desirable and appealing than what I was most fearing at that time. But the fear was intense, and the shrink’s messages to me were way less than encouraging, more like damning me. Took years to heal from that experience, alone, and to see myself in a much, much better light. No anxiety there, just the pure nature of being human.

    That is the journey of transformation. It’s exactly what I teach, based on how I went from hopelessness to new possibilities to certainty to knowingness to loving my life. I had given up hope at one time that this would ever happen, but thankfully I was 100% wrong and life has changed dramatically for the better thanks to new perspectives, new tools, and a new way of being. And I’m standing my ground firmly on that truth!

  • P.S.–Melissa, your article inspired me so much, that I actually had the opportunity to take action this morning. After I made this post, I went out to get a cup of coffee, and there was an older gentleman in line in front of me who discovered after ordering that he had forgotten his wallet, so without even thinking I offered to pay for him, and he accepted appreciatively. I told the barista about this artlce I had just read about acts of kindness, and this was the perfect opportunity to pay it forward. Great synchroncity! It felt good to do so, and I imagined making a difference, just with this one little thing. More and more of these in ANY arena would make a huge difference and help to restore people’s faith in humankind, and perhaps they would pay it forward, too, rippling kindness into society through selfless inspired actions. Thank you again, great start to 2020 🙂

  • Your work with humanity is awesome. Thank you for bringing light to the planet as you do. The woman at the desk at Newport Hospital, and others who work in the system with that same attitude, are what concern me. It’s what I’d call “not allowing in light.”

    These are gatekeepers to the system, protecting and perpetuating its prejudices, injustices, and profound lack of compassion, as well as the social division on which the “mental health” world and system thrive. Thank GOD you are doing what you are doing, this is what we need more of in the world. Indeed, step by step. On *my* Earth, all acts of kindness are welcome, encouraged, meaningful, and healing for all concerned, the greater good. Please keep it up!

  • “My body doesn’t speak English. She speaks feelings.”

    I love this perfect phrase. The mainstream drugs, ignores, dismisses, judges, and rationalizes feelings, rather than to honor, respect, listen, learn, and be guided by them. Indeed, that is stressful!

    If humanity on the whole were to learn the language of feelings, I believe we’d understand things better, starting with ourselves, because we’d be listening to our bodies over “social norms.” That feels like synchronicity to me, and alignment–not with social expectations, but more so, with who we really are, our true nature. Our feelings tell us who we are, they guide us like an inner light. To cut off from feelings is like being in the dark.

    I believe there is far less stress when we are aligned with our true nature because we are not split between our own desires and preferences vs. what society expects. Social expectations impose on individuals (oppression), they do not support our nature (freedom).

    When we give ourselves permission to be authentic based on how we truly feel at any given moment, then we, in turn, give others this permission, too, by example. That is the emotional, creative, and spiritual freedom which I believe we all crave. Certainly anything less than that is stressful because we simply are not feeling free to be ourselves, and that is maddening. Can we attain this level of freedom in life, and have our bodies feel good about it and be in agreement with it? I would think one would lead to the other, but it seems we have work to do here.

    Always inspiring and so thought provoking, Sarah, I look forward to what’s coming next.

  • Yes, like Slaying the Dragon and Fiachra say, millions of stories like this going on right now. It is abominable. I was almost a casuality in this same fashion, for the same reason. The abuse is profound, insidious, and thorough–mind, body, and spirit. Surviving meant moving entirely away from it, getting clarity, and seeing the big picture. Psychiatry has no moral compass, is clueless about humanity, and is destroying humankind, that is all too clear.

    RIP Zel.

  • “Anytime you base your esteem on peer opinion, you are at the mercy of peer opinion.”

    You said a mouthful, JanCarol, I totally agree with this. That’s how we give away our power, when we go by what others think, rather than by our own inner sense of who we are and what we desire. That’s our birthright. What one community might judge and condemn, another one will embrace and celebrate. We are that diverse.

    I would imagine we are born with self-esteem, it is a natural state of being. However, when we are born into a world of fucked up adults, that natural sense of self can become corrupt quickly from lack of awareness on the part of adults of how their actions and attitudes affect those around them, especially impressionable children. That’s one way to control others.

    Social media is a self-esteem killer, in general, with all the social bullying and shaming which occurs, everyone comparing themselves to others, throwing each other shade out of envy, rather than simply focusing on their own path. Everyone’s in each other’s business via social media, all boundaries are lost.

    Kids do, indeed, need better role models. I don’t think they’re terribly happy with how adults have handled things, and I can’t blame them. Some of the younger generation seem more awake. Hopefully, they’ve learned from our mistakes and we can be humble about that.

  • “Everyone is broken and without soul.”

    To me that implies suffering, that’s the feeling I get from reading this statement. So do you think we’re doomed? Or is there anything at all that can bring hope for making this world a better place in which to live, so that people don’t go around feeling “broken,” but instead, inspired and motivated to create a more appealing, safe, and supportive social and world environment?

  • RR and KS, responding to you both individually in this one post—

    KS, first, thank you so much for watching Voices That Heal and for this affirming and very encouraging comment. I did make this 9 years ago and wondered if it would still have an impact, so I’m really so grateful to read this. It’s amazing to me that it continues to be relevant, we certainly do need to continue using our voices without apology!

    And indeed, I hear you regarding how deep anger can limit our openness, I think that’s a natural human mechanism. Before I went through my second crisis (which is what guided me to finally ditch the psych drugs and, ultimately, the entire mh industry, in favor of soul work), I’d always been peripherally interested in this stuff, but it wasn’t front and center for me, just something interesting to consider and explore. I was a working stiff, 17 years in retail, taking my “meds” dutifully, and living life on Earth purely. My family is total academia, this is complete bullshit to them, so it was not in the slightest part of my upbringing, and in fact, it was demeaned rather aggressively, having nothing to do with me. It was just their way of thinking, which I happened to not internalize, thank goodness!

    But once I started waking up to the ills brought on by psychiatry and the like, I HAD to find a path to save my life, and little by little this opened up to me. However, even now that I (and also my partner, we integrate this together as we go from day to day) live by this paradigm and have for a while, I can still go through periods of resentment which will just hit me, like a post-traumatic stress response, and even I will start to question this, but it is short-lived.

    Seems that is a part of the process, from what I’ve gathered, it is layers of awakening to different aspects of ourselves, like soul retrieval. I do sometimes look up as though I am speaking to God and ask out loud, “Why do you make life on this planet so f-ing hard???”

    And if I’m particularly reeling from something, I can easily spend 10 or so minutes wondering if I’m dreaming and perhaps I’m wrong about all of this, just more kool-aid or something like that, and all the learning and integrating I’ve done goes flying out the window for that brief period of time, and I am fully in doubt on every level. But for only 10 minutes, mind you, it does pass quickly now, and then I realize what energy had hit me, and why, and to where it was guiding me, to some healing or insight or integrative process. We are such multi-dimensional humans! Not linear in the slightest.

    So I do find it all so very interesting, like a puzzle or crop circle type thing, and that keeps my chin up during those times because I’m so actively engaged with my process of soul evolution.

    And when I get the clarity from the soul perspective, there is no better feeling that I know, because for that moment, everything makes sense and just being in the moment is enough and I am perceiving my abundance on all sides, pure crystal clarity. I try to keep that feeling going for as long as I can, see what unfolds from that. Then, of course, I’ll get knocked off by something again, such is life, and I’ll feel the wounded human all over again, and then comes the next series of healings, integrations, and insights, and it can happen pretty quickly now as the self-healing program kicks in.

    It’s a fabulous process, I think, really game-changing, and I’m certainly open to sharing any info I can with you that would be helpful to you at this time. I think it’s a fascinating exploration and way more practical than people realize. Otherwise, it would just more academic nonsense without any practical application, merely theoretical or wishful thinking.

    The power in this is that it really can be applied on a completely practical down to Earth level, just takes some practice and adjusting to new perspectives. Although the stigma toward spirituality and things like soul growth can certainly impeded this integration. We all awaken in our own time, cannot force that whatsover.

    However, very honestly, I just don’t know any other way forward, I think status quo has run its course. Everything has a low ceiling on it. And it’s getting lower as the old systems crumble before our very eyes, that’s what I’m seeing happen, at least. I think there is new information in these realms from which we’ll all benefit, infinite possibilities to explore here.

    RR, I hear you and I hear this often, totally respect it. You say, “May the people of the woo be free to wish-think their woo as they choose. And may the people of the non-woo remain wholly unwooed,” and I think that’s fair enough (although the phrase “wish-think” is not exactly neutral, but regardless, I’ll take it as “to each their own,” which works for me). I’m certainly not going to argue with you about your beliefs, so I wouldn’t impose mine onto you as I wouldn’t want you or anyone attempting to impose your/their beliefs onto me. We’re all entitled to what we know and how we perceive things, I think that goes without saying. Also to learn and grow at our own pace.

    I do happen to believe in the soul, to me that is everything. I think soul is everywhere, it’s our universal connector. If you don’t, that’s fine, I don’t expect everyone to believe what I do, I’m totally aware of our diversity on this planet.

    I, personally, experience the soul every day of my life now. There are many ways of perceiving it IF AND ONLY IF one is open to it. Reality always begins with imagination, we need that in order to create it, and in turn, to create within it. I think imagination is essential, and our most powerful tool for manifesting.

    I do, however, think that there are always new things to learn, that’s never-ending. So who knows? One day you might remember this dialogue in a new light, or something I say in my response to kindredspirit might spark a new thought. Then again, maybe not, and that would be your path. So agreeing to disagree, respectfully, works for me.

    Merry Christmas and/or Happy Hanukkah to you both, and to all who are reading this! May we find peace in our hearts and minds as we continue to drive these remarkable changes through our human will, to know justice and to thrive in well-being. That is my prayer for this season and the New Year.

  • I’m surprised that some don’t see the absolute harm that psychotherapy can do in 1 to 1 unsupervised meetings, week after week. In this concocted game of transference/countertransference, the insidious damage done most often does not show up until after such negative projections have been embedded and dependence has been created or at least attempted. I think it’s the same all over this entire industry and causing all of this mayhem–the invisible vampirism that takes place, siphoning clients of all they’ve got, the fuel for the entire “mental health industry.”

    I’d say it’s mostly unconscious because that is the training, education, and the norm. We do need a new normal, however, which implies waking up to how we’ve been programmed and assess how this has turned out. Just look around…

  • “Psychotherapy is neither medical nor paramedical, it is a purely cultural activity which testifies to the time and the place in which we live.”

    This is an insightfully concise perspective of psychotherapy. I’d also add that any of these approaches are geared toward fitting in and adapting to the norm. Whereas challenging the norm is the ONLY way to create real and true change, at the core, and how we find our own voice, apart and distinct from those of others. And that includes “the therapist voice.”