Big Rowan Ackison (greensh) wrote,
Big Rowan Ackison
greensh

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The Addiction of Pain

I wrote the following back in 2007.  It still speaks to me, I still face challenges, and I hope this may help other people.

Pain and anger are addictive. I begin with this statement because I see this being a driving force in many lives, including my own. There is a place where pain and anger cripple a person, keeping them from operating. The wounded person is incapable of doing more than just existing. They are the broken radio that can play no tunes. In time though, the radio is repaired and still there is no music. The root of this dysfunction is the continued embracing of those things that originally crippled the inner being.

Why embrace things that provide discomfort and derail lives? The answers are many, but I believe that there are some common roots. Humans are creatures of habit. Any emotion can set a vibrational groove into a person's life. This groove is where a person gets stuck. The groove is where the person lives their life. Caroline Myss uses the term "woundology". In the grasp of woundology, the person begins and ends the world's conversations, both internal and external, with some reference to the original wound, the source of the pain and anger. The person has therapy, attends workshops, reads books, and pursues other avenues to 'healing' the wound. These are applaudable, but in the midst of woundology, these potentially healing avenues become prisoner to the groove. Myss gives the example of the person who begins a conversation with "I just came from my therapy group on X, and let me tell you about it" and ends the conversation with "I've learned so much in my ten years of therapy with the doctor, but I'm just not getting results, so I guess I have to find a new one". This person's life revolves around the addiction of the wound. In some ways, living the wound through anger and pain is all they really know. This is a sad thing. I cannot say that I am free of this myself.

What is the outcome of this addiction? Many things are justified based on the addiction. The pain that the individual feels easily justifies and pardons inflicting pain on others. Opportunities for learning about oneself are wasted as a revenge of sorts is sought against the world.  Additionally time, money and emotional energy are spent in a never-ending quest to 'end' the addiction. While the original pain and anger were honorable, asking for acceptance and then transformation, the pain and anger take on a life of their own. The resonance of the pain and anger transforms the person into a caricature of who they could have been instead of the pain and anger being transformed into something else. Again, I am not free of this myself.

How can the addiction be discarded? Perhaps therapy to counter the therapy? I don't know about that. The Eastern meditative systems speak of having an impartial observer "in our mind". This part of us stands separate from the motions of ego and emotion. The observer is not the mind's intellect. Our wounds and addictions can easily hijack this. The observer is instead the holder of the wisdom that comes from experience and knowledge. Destructive actions are mitigated because we know better and have experienced the outcome. The path of woundology can be circumvented by the observer saying, "Wait, we've been there before. Remember? Don't go there". Gradually, new grooves are etched into the psyche of our lives. Woundology, and the addictions inherent in it, pass away into the history of our lives. Addictions are released. Pain and angered are honored and then sent on their ways. Life is lived how it should be. We become our true selves. This is what I aspire and live towards. In the good moments, this is who I am.
Tags: addiction, pain, woundology
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