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The aim of this book is to set you free. But free from what? Free from neurosis. Free from the feeling that you have to obey authority. Free from emotional intimidation. Free from addiction. Free from inhibition.
The key to happiness, mental health and being the most that we can be is absolute and unconditional self-acceptance. The paradox is that many of our problems are caused by trying to improve ourselves, censor our thinking, make up for past misdeeds and struggling with our negative feelings whether of depression or aggression.
But if we consider ourselves in our entirety in this very moment, we know these things :
1. Anything we have done is in the past and cannot be changed, thus it is pointless to do anything else but accept it. No regrets or guilt.
2. While our actions can harm others, our thoughts and emotions, in and of themselves, never can. So we should accept them and allow them to be and go where they will. While emotions sometimes drive actions, those who completely accept their emotions and allow themselves to feel them fully, have more choice over how they act in the light of them.
Self-criticism never made anyone a better person. Anyone who does a “good deed” under pressure from their conscience or to gain the approval of others takes out the frustration involved in some other way. The basis for loving behaviour towards others is the ability to love ourselves. And loving ourselves unconditionally, means loving ourselves exactly as we are at this moment.
This might seem to be complacency, but in fact the natural activity of the individual is healthy growth, and what holds us back from it is fighting with those things we can’t change and the free thought and emotional experience which is the very substance of that growth.
Wednesday, 30 March 2016
Saturday, 19 March 2016
Tuesday, 1 March 2016
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I’ve always experienced a tension within me between feelings of frustration and the imperative to “do the right thing”. When the frustration dies down, “doing the right thing” comes naturally. But when it builds up, there is a part of me that doesn’t want to “do the right thing”. To do so at such times requires discipline. But it is right. This I don’t question.
|Photo from Reuters|
Now I’m not suggesting that we stop being polite and respectful, or that we just give up hope of the Trumps of the world ever finding that inner peace that would enable them to be polite and respectful themselves. But I do think we need to try to come to a better understanding of the relationship between that part of us which says “thou must” and the part that says “fuck that”.
The more space we make in ourselves, the more capacity we will have to help those who are "out of gas".
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