Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Pain by Any Other Name....

Pain bodies, inner demons, struggles....Whatever the funk you want to call those triggers, those things in life that set you from I'm-okay Zero to Holy-God-Just-Kill-Me-Now Sixty in no-time flat, that's what I'm talkin' about.

In the Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle talks about pain-bodies (this is something that I actually giggled out loud about, however, as in the previous chapter he went all Buddha Buddha on me and said, "Pain does not exist. It is an illusion." And yet these nefarious suckers called Pain BODIES exist? WTF? I mean is this a semantics thing? Cause I will so kick your philosophizing, exegetical bootay Mr. Tolle. Oh, yeah, sorry, that is my overidentification with my mind/ego - I am supposed to let go of my thoughts and go with that warm fuzzy feeling of resonance....riiiiiiiiiiiight). Origins of these bad mo-fo's notwithstanding, Eckhart is convinced that they exist.

I am too. Apparently that resonated.

Call them pain bodies (the New Agey edition), demons (the Evangelical Spiritual War-Fare-ist edition), unresolved psychic struggles (the thank you for joining us, Sigmund, edition), your own personal freakshow (the well-known post-modern feminine self-deprecation edition) or what have you, these foes exist.

I read this chapter about a month ago, when first getting back on the meds, and took a lot from it. It makes complete sense to me, as I subscribe to all of the aforementioned schools of thought when it comes to struggles of the mind, and to be able to comprehensively consolidate them and put my finger on this phenomenon so thoroughly really helps.

After Monday night's drama, I had to re-read it. The first part was fairly uncomfortable to read, emphases mine.
...The pain that you create now is always some form of non-acceptance, some form of conscious resistance to what is. On the level of thought, the resistance is some form of judgment. On the emotional level it is some form of negativity...
But I'm not a judger. I'm open minded and loving, and....Eff it all if he isn't right, Heather! You react to fair v. unfair things and guess what determines fair or unfair? Judgment. Damn! Things that you DEEM (read: judge) to be hurtful are what you allow to cause hurt in you. So what the hell, is everything just supposed to roll off of one's back then? Un-freaking-realistic....or is that my attachment to my egoic mind? OMG...do you see how I make myself crazy with this stuff?

Onward I delved...

...As long as you are unable to access the power of the Now, every emotional pain that you experience leaves a residue of pain that lives on in you. It merges with the pain from the past, which was already there, and becomes lodged in the mind and the body....

This accumulated pain is a negative energy field that occupies your body and mind. If you look at it as an invisible entity in its own right, you are getting quite close to the truth. IT's the emotional pain-body. It has two modes of being: dormant and active. A pain-body may be dormant 90 percent of the time; in a deeply unhappy person, though, it may be active up to 100 percent of the time. Some people live almost entirely through their pain-body, while others may experience it only in certain situations, such as intimate relationships, or situations linked with past loss or abandonment, physical or emotional hurt, and so on. Anything can trigger it, particularly if it resonates with a pain pattern from your past. When it is ready to awaken from its dormant stage, even a thought or an innocent remark made by someone close to you can activate it.

Some pain-bodies are obnoxious, but relatively harmless, for example like a child who won't stop whining. Others are vicious and destructive monsters, true demons. Some are physically violent; many more are emotionally violent. Some will attack people around you or close to you, while others may attack you, their host. Thoughts and feelings about your life then become deeply negative and self-destructive. Illnesses and accidents are often created this way. Some pain-bodies drive their hosts to suicide....

The pain-body, which is a dark shadow cast by the ego, is actually afraid of the light of your consciousness. It is afraid of being found out...

So the pain-body doesn't want you to obserrve it directly and see it for what it is. The moment you observe it, feel its energy field within you, and take your attention into it, the identification is broken...You are now the witness or the watcher of the pain-body. This means it cannot use you anymore by pretending to be you. You have found your innermost strength...

...St. Paul expressed this universal principle beautifully: "Everything is shown up by being exposed to the light and whatever is exposed to the light itself becomes light." Just as you cannot fight the darkness, you cannot fight the pain-body. Trying to do so would create inner conflict and thus further pain. Watching it is enough. Watching it implies accepting it as a part of what is at that moment....

...For many women, the pain-body awakens particularly at the time preceding the menstrual flow...

Intense, eh?

My inner demons are hellacious. They always have been.

First, I'm an extremely sensitive person, which means that I often see/sense pain in others, particularly those pains that resonate with my own experiences, and right or wrong, I attach to them and take the pains of others on with my own. Additionally, I have a strong sense of right/wrong, fair/unfair, etc., and those sensibilities are judgment driven, determined by MY values and not necessarily those of others. Finally, I have the type of brain that connects everything. A commenter said something about synesthesia in reference to LMNOB's RainMan-ish equations awhile back, and after looking it up, I was like, "Holy hell, that's me!" And probably her too. It is extremely difficult for me to experience things in and of themselves, as another neuro pathway usually fires simultaneously - on a lighter note, it often makes for good humor - as last week the Boss was telling me about a comic who noted that teens stutter uncontrollably, "Du-Du-Du-Duuuuuuuuuude seriously, seriously...MoMoMoMom, listen to me!" and the Du-du-du-duuuude part made me think of Genesis' old song Studio...we sang Du-du-dudio as a hybrid of both jokes all day- and makes the "forget" part of forgiving and forgetting almost impossible. When it comes to a difficult moment that is related to some other significant pain patter in my life, it is almost as if I have post-traumatic stress disorder and I'm concurrently living present and past. That my friends, is a horrible way to live.

Monday night, I was in top form and was facing all three of my strikes with the porn issue.

Saturday, a woman on my Mommies Board had discovered her husband had been illicitly using porn and he'd lied to her about it. It had stirred some stuff up, but so far, I'd been dealing with it.

My period was about to start - I'd been cramping all day.

Charlie Brown, on the way home from softball, mentioned that he'd prayed with Prominent Male and another guy - the latter of whom had asked for help as he struggled with sexual addiction.

And blam-o!

What about the fucking women who have to put up with this shit? What about their broken hearts? What about the fear that WE are never going to be THEM? What about the skimpy assed clothes that girls are wearing these days, even to CHURCH? What about the time you told me, to avoid accountability at that moment, that accountability groups just put the temptation at the front of your head - is talking about it with this other guy going to make you think about acting out again?

And I was dealing with these rapid-fire accusations at the same time as I was 8 months pregnant with LMNOB sobbing because my husband had just bold-faced lied to me without any struggle or appearance of remorse. On that day I'd physically wanted to die, and Monday night, it all came flooding back.

Yesterday, of course, I was embarrassed. I mean, he'd prayed for light on behalf of another person. For light to dissipate this smothering darkness of addiction. To give this man strength, to take strength from this man in his times of weakness.

Monday night I was so pissed off that he even has to do this. I was not accepting that this is.

For better or for worse, this is part of our lives. And that's a big light-shining realization on this dark body of pain, no?

© 2008 Ramblings of a Red-Headed Step-Child. All Rights Reserved


  1. This is heavy... like I need a wheel barrel heavy. Sounds like you are on the right track though... keep looking... keep reading. You are doing a great job.

    I am reading Tolles A New Earth.

  2. Hey, can I link you from my Good Housekeeping blog? They want me to post 10 sites I like to read. It could be some good exposure for you. Any particular posts you want me to highlite to get you noticed more? I'm nice that way, huh? Let me know via email:BabyCenterAndrea@Yahoo.com

    Or comment at my Zoloft Site.

    If you don't want to be linked, that's fine, too.

  3. I am very happy you found me :)

    Yes! the pain-body, whew...like the Parasite in Don Miguel Ruiz's "Four Agreements" - have you read that? Highly recommend it!