Which is preferable to you: health or disease?
Disease is expensive. It taxes the mind, the heart, the body, the family, the workplace, and the community. Where we are diseased, we do not enjoy abundance, freedom, empowerment, and joy.
Proactive investment into health protection and cultivation is not expensive. It lightens the mind, the heart, the body, the family, the workplace, and the community. Where we are proactive, we enjoy abundance, freedom, empowerment, and joy.
The mind that wants it easy is like a person who wants a paycheck without putting in work.
Pain that has not yet come is avoidable. yoga Sutras 2.16
Like kids at home partying with pills because mom and dad aren’t watching, neglected areas of small sickness progress into large sickness.
Like kids at home not partying with pills because mom and dad are watching, tended areas of small sickness do not progress into large sickness.
Anger is a cause of disease, yet the root causes of it often remain neglected in the name of putting out fires, cleaning up messes, and self-trickery.
Mistaking selfish anger as an asset and not seeing it as a liability, habitually burning selfish anger for fuel to keep your vehicle running: more trouble.
Not mistaking selfish anger as an asset and seeing it as a liability, not habitually burning anger for fuel to keep your vehicle running: less trouble.
One attitude further upstream in the mind which gives rise to anger whether obvious or hidden is a deeply ingrained attitude of entitlement.
Show me a person with a deeply ingrained sense of entitlement, and I’ll show you a person prone to anger–whether manifesting as a low simmering irritability or an explosive bout of rage or somewhere in between.
Show me a person prone to anger, and I’ll show you a person prone to disease.
Show me a person who believes they have no work to do in this department, and I’ll show you a person in deep trouble.
Therefore: to decrease the burden of suffering and live more joyfully, it’s crucial that we acknowledge and work effectively on the personal problem of anger–arising in part because of a deeply ingrained attitude of entitlement.
Just like Rome wasn’t destroyed in a day, any decades-deep attitude isn’t eradicated and reprogrammed overnight.
How to know whether this entitlement attitude is a problem in your life? Here are some possible hints:
> you get upset when you have to delay gratification. Clues include sucking teeth, huffing and puffing, uttering negative remarks under your breath.
> you think you deserve to be happy all the time, and not have to deal with negativity “out there”
> you are quick to sarcastic remarks without considering the impact of your words
> you hold fast to your own ideas and opinions, and aren’t really interested in other perspectives.
> you think people would be a lot better off if they just did things your way, and them not seeing it your way irks you
> you spend lots of free time pursuing personal interests, and don’t give much thought to problems in the community–whether on the local or global levels.
> you get irritable at even slight hints of criticism, even if part of you knows it’s justified (’cause you really did fuck up that time, champ)
> you have some abandonment &/or betrayal issues unresolved
> you were born and raised in the United States, especially from 1970 onward
* * *
A few available action items:
Cultivate an attitude of commitment to the work of self-knowing in the name of healing mind and body of affliction.
Imprint daily onto the mind a compelling upliftment-oriented statement such as: This day I resolve to live in the fullness of truth . Let it be that I seek to uncover the roots of negativity; Holy Godself, help me in this work.
Devote contemplation time to introspect whether you may be causing suffering to yourself and the ones who love you by anger-tinged thoughts, words, and actions coming from a deeply ingrained sense of entitlement. Recollect that anger may operate stealthily under a seemingly just superficial attitude.
Create reflection space to consider how the affliction of entitlement causes suffering in relationships. Examples include: self-hatred; bodily tension-inflammation-pain; inability to relax; erectile dysfunction; conditions of dryness in the body; coldness between husband and wife; resentment between parent and child; searing words for those whose opinions differ from your own (especially regarding religion and politics); war between nations
Begin the process of carefully and non-judgmentally observing how, with whom, and where you react negatively in your daily interactions–even seemingly minor or insignificant annoyances. Note relevant trends; for example, whenever that over there happens, I react with these angry thoughts here. Begin the process of asking why? What is it that I wanted or expected and did not get? What is it that I did not want nor expect yet did get?
Remember the distinction between honesty and integrity, similar to the distinction between the scout who says this is what has happened, is happening, or is about to happen and the general who says given this information, here is the best route of action in the name of the highest good. Practice both.
Practice discerning possible 2WAI outcome/s (win-win for all involved) of a given set of circumstances and align thoughts-words-actions accordingly.
Learn to sense when remorse/regret/shame/guilt arises from within the conscience. Learn to sense also when the ego-defensive habits of rationalizing, minimizing, distraction, etc. arise to reduce the anxiety borne of seeing unpleasant truths. Discern beneficial from harmful; retain what’s needed, purify what’s not needed. Allow yourself the space and time to learn
Recollect that to the degree we live in truth we are empowered to level-up our health game–just as committed effort can transform an abandoned garbage dump with tall weeds abounding into a beautiful urban garden and park system magnetizing visitors from afar. The corollary to this: to the degree we do not live in truth we disempower ourselves from leveling-up the health game.
Mind that it’s a long game.
I write this to you both as a healthcare provider with the duty to join the dots regarding wellness and sickness and as a dude who’s also getting himself woke. Being personally involved in the work of addressing my own health problems arising from a deeply ingrained sense of entitlement, I can push the following theses: 1) the link–known to the ancients–between upstream anger and downstream bodily suffering is quite real, 2) the possibility of profound healing of the affliction of entitlement is just as real, with resources available within us right now .
It can suck big time to admit the truth of how we’ve hurt ourselves and others through our wrong views. I mean, it’ll get deeply painful at times to the point of bitter tears when you’re doing it right. But when that space is freed-up, information from a Greater Place within is available to contact us–and, dear friends, it is a beautiful experience words cannot describe. Our real self knows when it’s right and proper to temporarily endure what seems like torture in the name of restoring system integrity.
We don’t have to suffer as much as we do, provided we look and labor in the direction of the root of our problems. It’s important work.
Copyright (c) 2018 Epicenter Wellness, LLC