Silence as an act of aggression

Silence can be violent. I’m not sure what that means for those who are fond of meditating or those who preach of silence being golden, or even if it means anything at all. The silence I refer to here is that which takes place after a fight, or instead of an argument – the stuff that occurs on an interpersonal level. Anyone can find themselves in the position of being convinced there’s just no point in talking to a significant other. Maybe you’ve said what needed to be said two or three times already and nothing changes, so you stop communicating anything of importance. If you’ve tried everything from dropping subtle hints to having a full-blown screaming fit and got nowhere, you might give them the silent treatment instead. To deny communication would be an effective way to send a message to the other person’s psyche that says you are nothing to me. If we’ve tried to express something we consider important to us because we need something to change and our observations are met with dismissal or hostility we’re likely to take the other person’s reaction personally. We hear you’re not important enough for me to change this situation even though I have the power to do so. When this happens we have two immediate choices; we can put up and shut up, or we can leave. Ironically, shutting up is one sure way of ensuring the demise of the relationship. Does this not spell the beginning of the end of the intimacy? Or do we commit psychic suicide and allow a part of us to die off inside instead?

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Exorcising Those Demons

A chapter on exorcism and possession in The People of the Lie had my head in a spin. I left the woo scene many moons ago and now have trouble reading any book or article which tries to explain superstition or the supernatural. Although my main gripe is that it’s littered with inconsistency and can take excessive amounts of mental effort to sift through the words. Many humans are psychologically affected by ritual. Ritual can be shown to lessen anxiety, improve performance, and help people grieve after bereavement. I’m not only speaking of the hardcore stuff such as exorcisms, weddings, and funerals but the small ones we do too. Tapping on a surface, eating a particular food and lighting candles – any of those things you do compulsively to ward off negativity or improve your luck, are rituals.

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Psychological Gargoylism – A keeper of a phrase?

I love the term psychological gargoylism which was probably coined by M.Scott Peck. It’s the only reason I’m writing any of this at all. I actually just wanted to put the term out there, the rest of this post may well be no more than window dressing.

But for now, it’s about those kids…..

Excerpt from People of the Lie, by M. Scott Peck (1983).

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The Connection Between Evil & Self-reflection

I can’t actually remember what prompted me to re-acquaint myself with a handful of the books which influenced me emotionally or mentally during my hardcore woo years (1993-99). Back then, I had a chronic reluctance to think critically and wasn’t keen on reading anything that didn’t offer the promise of a life filled with unicorns and rainbows. I re-read the hugely successful The Road Less Traveled, (Peck, 1978) and followed it up with The People of the Lie (Peck, 1983). It is the latter which provided the fuel for this post.

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