THE WALL OF CRAP THEORY

Reposting this, as the original post is acting weirdly.

Maybe “Operation Beautiful” can be seen as a decrapping process? I have a feeling that many of us see crap when we look at ourselves in the mirror – and have been brainwashed into thinking it belongs to us.

Or we spend our lives shying away from mirrors in fear of only seeing crap.

zingerella wrote an article on Livejournal some time ago that I have found very useful. I’m copying it here, with her permission, as it fits so well in with the main theme of this blog. Here it is, in Zingerella’s own brilliant words:

THIS CRAP IS NOT MY CRAP

A long, long time ago, a friend took me to Alateen. She and I had bonded, in part, over the substance-abuse problems in our respective families, and she’d found a lot of good in the program. It didn’t take with me, long term, but it didn’t do me any harm, and some of the people I met there had some useful things to say, from their experience interacting with their own messed-up families.

The Wall of Shit theory is perhaps the most useful thing I took away from Alateen, and I don’t think it’s an official part of the program. Here’s how it goes:

Throughout life, everyone has a certain amount of crap hurled at them. Some people get more crap, some people get less crap. Some people, the lucky ones, also get issued shovels, and spend their formative years being shown how to garden and constructing gardens in their hearts. So they’re well equipped for dealing with the crap life throws at them. Sometimes it builds up, but they have their shovels, and use them and the crap to fertilize their gardens, and it’s more or less okay.

Other people get only crap. They get crap from a very young age, and there’s nobody to show them how to deal with it, because the people in their lives are dealing with their own crap, and throwing crap all over the place. So it builds up, in layers around their heart. After years and years of crap, their hearts, which may be beautiful, are pretty much surrounded in crap. Anything they try to send out is either trapped behind the wall of crap, or if it manages to squeeze out, it emerges covered in crap, sometimes to such an extent that it’s impossible to recognize as anything that might ever have been beautiful. The same thing happens to anything that other people try to send in: if it gets in at all, it’s covered in crap, and the person wonders why the world is throwing more crap at them. Because the crap is so thick, nobody can tunnel through from the outside, to find the beautiful heart. People get lost, and the crap sticks to them, and if they emerge at all, they too are covered in crap.

You can’t really blame people for not wanting to be covered in other people’s shit.

Sometimes, if the crapped-upon person can learn to recognize the crap, he or she can begin to reach through it, or learn to look for the openings. If a person’s spent their entire life surrounded by crap, however, they don’t always know to look for anything else—how should they? So you have people on both sides throwing love and kindness and whatever at a wall of crap, and people on either sides of the wall wondering why the people who profess to love them are giving them only crap to deal with.

Throwing more love at the wall of crap often doesn’t do anything, because the person inside all the crap simply can’t receive love that isn’t covered in crap.

There may be one or two little tunnels through the crap, and something may get through these, but, of course, they’re hard to find, and not entirely stable, and surrounded by still more crap. So even if you find a way through the crap, for some love to get through, it’s not going to be easy or pleasant to get it to the person inside the wall of crap.

The person who explained the Wall of Shit theory couldn’t tell me what to do about other people’s crap. He didn’t know if one could do much. Over time, I’ve learned that, when it comes to other people’s crap, my choices are pretty limited. Since the CUP (crapped-upon person) can’t see their own crap, and doesn’t know that they’re throwing crap at me, I can merely decide how much crap I’m willing to endure for the sake of whatever beauty I can see shining through the crap. I can shovel away from the outside, but there’s never really any way of knowing what’s inside the crap, or if I’m even digging in the correct direction. If I can find the tunnels, I might be able to get a shovel to the person inside, but after that, it’s up to them to dig their way out.

They have to dig their way out, or tell me how to find the tunnels, and accept that once I get to them, I may not smell like roses.

See, I knew, when I was a teen, that my dad really cared about us, and really tried to love us. But his love, even when he wasn’t drinking, was sometimes kind of crappy. And I would try to love him, and it would feel like nothing I did was right, like he wasn’t seeing me. Understanding that his own rather messed up childhood, his drinking, and his dysfunctional marriage with my mom had given him way more crap than he could ever hope to shovel through meant that I wasn’t the one sending bad love.

Since my Alateen days, my dad and I have learned to interact a bit better. I’ve learned to keep a cloth on hand, for wiping crap off of things, and not to expect him to send me bright, shiny love. If he lectures me about my professional life, it’s not because he thinks I’m utterly incompetent—he’s trying to help me, and I don’t have to listen to all his advice. He’s getting better at finding paths through the crap, too, and I think he’s not feeling completely defeated all the time, the way he did with my mom. And being grown up means that I just don’t have to deal with his crap all the time, anymore. I can walk away, and say “This crap is not my crap.”

I’ve walked away from other CUPs—people who were so far behind their walls of crap that I couldn’t hope to find them. People whose walls of pain and anger and other emotional ordure meant that no matter how much I wanted to love them, I could send them only things covered in crap, and they could respond only with more pain that I would send them crap. I mean who needs more crap? Their crap, however, is not my crap.

Right now, nobody in my life seems to be throwing crap at me. So it’s easy to pitch in and help the people I love shovel the crap that comes their way, if they need it, and spread it around to see what grows.

Schizophrenia from another angle

I found a link to this article on the blog of NFPH: the Norwegian Association for Mental Health Care.
It is part of a series called “Lives Restored”, and the title is: “Listening to Schizophrenia”:

The New York Times: “Finding Purpose After Living With Delusion”


If you find the article interesting, I recommend this book: 
“Alternatives Beyond Psychiatry”


Issendai on "SICK SYSTEMS"

How to keep someone with you forever

A sick system has four basic rules:

Rule 1: Keep them too busy to think. Thinking is dangerous. If people can stop and think about their situation logically, they might realize how crazy things are.

Rule 2: Keep them tired.

Rule 3: Keep them emotionally involved. 

Rule 4: Reward intermittently. 

How do you do all this? It’s incredibly easy:

Keep the crises rolling. 

"Mandatory optimism"



I am posting this because I am participating in a discussion on positive thinking in Sigrun’s Norwegian blog, and I agree so  very much with ms Ehrenreich:

“Acclaimed journalist, author and political activist Barbara Ehrenreich explores the darker side of positive thinking”:


Here is a link to “Bright-Sided”, Barabara Ehrenreich’s book on the dangers of positive thinking

Heroes: Harold A Maio


We no longer talk about ‘the’ Jews. So why do we talk about ‘the’ mentally ill?

Here is an excerpt from  Harold A Maio’s article:

“English is not a complicated language. The rules for prejudice are rigid and clear, regularly practised against a “this” or a “that”, which changes with time. The techniques do not change; the target does.

“The” Jews. One has no difficulty pinpointing where that metaphor rose, or fell to its lowest. The industrialised murder of “the” Jews is taught in about every culture, we are aware of the effect of reducing a group to a “the”, and how far someone can take it. I address the form not the incidence.

Presently popular worldwide is “the” mentally ill, a replica of “the” Jews. It is seldom recognised. In 2008 all nine US supreme court justices agreed “the” mentally ill existed. I shuddered; the US went silent. The entire country went dark and did not notice. An alley expression had reached the height of the US supreme court and journalism fell silent, neither seeing it, nor wanting to. Not just in the US, but worldwide. It is one of the prejudices I track worldwide on the net. I respond to each example.”

The opposite of hate is …

What is the opposite of hate? I’ve been googling this question, and I’m inserting some of the replies I found, in the order that I found them.  
I:

Rabbi Bradley Artson reports his conclusion from an international conference on hate in Oslo:
 
“In other words, the opposite of hate is law. The Prime Minister of Norway even bolstered that claim by quoting from the statesman/philosopher Edmund Burke (18th century England) that, ‘When bad men combine, the good must associate, else they will fall one by one.’”

II:
From “The Nazis’ Most Important Arsenal During WWII” by Jan Lee.


Quoting from “Belonging and Genocide: Hitler’s Community 1918-1945” by Thomas Kühne (also spelled Kuehne)

“The opposite of hate is what I call belonging and togetherness.” The Nazi process of indoctrination negated any concern for other individuals and communities than their own, and is broken down in the book in five stages:
– creating a “people’s community” that was limited to Aryan membership;
– camaraderie both on the front and on the street;
– the establishment of societal ethics that not only endorsed genocide but required it;
– community-wide complicity in genocide and oppression;
– and an atmosphere in which apathy and despondency toward helping the “outsider” thrived.

III:
From Yoga Sutras of Patanjali 2.30-2.34: Yamas and Niyamas, rungs #1 and #2

The opposite of hate is not love.
The opposite of hate is non-hate,
letting go, releasing of that hate.
Then, love naturally arises.

IV: From Upon the Rainbow 
in a context of   EMDR therapy:


“He read to me from a book – didn’t give me the title – about hate and its parts – resentment, vengeance, etc. Part of what he read said that the opposite of hate is not love – it is indifference. That is already what I want – I’ve said from the beginning that my goal is to be able to run into them (the church people) in public and have it not affect me at all. I don’t know that I fully hate them, because some of the “symptoms of hate” (so to speak) that he read, I’ve already gotten over, or never had. He continued and read a couple of pages about forgiveness as well. He wrote down the name of a book that the book he was reading from referred to – Forgiving the Unforgivable by Beverly Flanigan.”

I had to look up EMDR therapy, and found
 a description here. From my viewpoint, 
any therapy that describes emotions
 and reactions as “inappropriate”
and “negative”
 is best avoided.

V:

From answers.yahoo.com
  
Uncle Remus 54:

“I always thought the opposite of love is fear and the opposite of hate is compassion.”

VI:  

My suggestion is closely related to Kühne and Uncle Remus 54:

“The opposite of hate is recognition.”

I am going to write more about this and explain where it comes from later; for now I’d like to round off with two more quotations:


Rollo May:  “Hate is not the opposite of love; apathy is.”

Elie Wiesel: “The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it’s indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it’s indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it’s indifference.”

What does this look like from where you are standing?