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Posts Tagged ‘origins’

From His Father’s Decline, de Blasio ‘Learned What Not to Do By JAVIER C. HERNÁNDEZ, October 13, 2013,  New York Times

Warren and Maria Wilhelm with, from rear, Steven, Donald and Bill, who is now Bill de Blasio, the Democratic nominee for mayor. When Mr. de Blasio was 18, his father killed himself.

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Our next meeting will be on Monday, August 29th, from 7:30-9:30pm.

The theme for the meeting will be ORIGINS.

(We discussed this topic a year ago, when the East Bay group started.  Due of the number of new men in attendance, and because this topic is always relevant to each of us, it seemed like a good time to revisit.  Below is Stefan’s original text.)

We all come from a specific place in the world. It is possible to adopt a new home, to find and claim a new land as “ours,” but there always remains some trace where we were young, an indelible mark. Where we come from becomes a subtle and deeply personal myth. This story will often color and frame our present more strongly than the actual events occurring in the moment.

Where did you come from? What were the places that you grew up which shaped you? How was your life impacted by your exposure (or not) to nature, to people who were like you, and people who were not? What are your earliest memories of place? What was the light like, the temperature of the air? Were you happy or uncomfortable? Why does this memory stick? Does it have any special meaning?
How does your place of origin manifest in your life today? What have you kept? What have you rejected? How strong is your feeling of “home?” What do you consider your home, your sacred space? Where do you find peace and safety? Where do you not?

If you are interested in attending this meeting, to be held in North Oakland, contact us for the location.

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We will be meeting on Monday 5/23/11, 7:30-9:30pm

Our topic will be

dis·es·teem
– verb (used with object) 1. to hold in low regard; think unfavorably of.
– noun 2. lack of esteem;  disfavor; low regard.
Origin: 1585–95; dis + esteem

I came across this term in Guilt, Anger & God: The Patterns of Our Discontents, C. FitzSimons Allison, 2003:

Another characteristic of the civilized person is disesteem, the lack of self-esteem, or even self-hatred.  Civilization must not only restrain, it must give ideals . . . and the higher the ideals, the greater the judgment. . . Under such arduous demands, I look in the mirror and do not like what I see . . . Disesteem is the easiest of all personal factors to underestimate, and there is no one who does not suffer in some acute way from its pervasive ache.

Many point to childhood experiences, which is were we first learn our civilization culture, as the potential building blocks of low self-esteem. Were you validated as a child?  Were there expectations you felt were unreasonable or impossible to reach?  Was there a lack of discipline in your household?  Were you compared unfavorably to others?  How were your mistakes or failures handled by your parents?  Your achievements?  What feelings did any/all of these situations create in you?

Parents/elders are just people, just like us, with strengths and weaknesses – anyone raising children of their own learn this lesson.  But children can place their caregivers on tall pedestals.  To obtain ‘love’ from a parent, some of us learn some rather peculiar behavior and thinking.  Even after a parent is gone or out of our lives, we internalize the ‘lessons learned’ and they inform our behavior today.  Often this is buried very deeply in our unconscious and hard to access.

To explore your personal self-esteem issues:

  • Identify the critical voice within you?  What is its repeated message to you?
  • How do you feel in response to this voice?  What reactions does it trigger in you?
  • From whom does this voice come?  Who does it represent to you?
  • What does it mean to keep this criticism inside of you? (e.g. does this possibly represent an emotional connection with your antagonist?)
  • Do you see a ‘closed loop’ created in this type of thinking, fulfilling the very thing addressed by the critical voice?
  • Can you differentiate the critical voice from yourself?  Would it be possible to have a conversation with the voice to understand it better?
  • You developed your critical voice for a reason – to help you survive in the world.  What is it trying to protect you from?
  • The disesteem within you is not your enemy, but your protector.  Unless it is satisfied that you are safe, it will exert a forceful control over your decisions.  How can you reassure it that you are safe as you enter areas IT feels are too dangerous to explore?

I look forward to meeting with you on this topic!

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Our next meeting will be on Monday, August 16th, from 7:30-9:30pm.
The theme for the meeting will be ORIGINS.

We all come from a specific place in the world. It is possible to adopt a new home, to find and claim a new land as “ours,” but there always remains some trace where we were young, an indelible mark. Where we come from becomes a subtle and deeply personal myth. This story will often color and frame our present more strongly than the actual events occurring in the moment.

For this meeting we will share our origins.
Where did you come from? What were the places that you grew up which shaped you? How was your life impacted by your exposure (or not) to nature, to people who were like you, and people who were not? What are your earliest memories of place? What was the light like, the temperature of the air? Were you happy or uncomfortable? Why does this memory stick? Does it have any special meaning?
How does your place of origin manifest in your life today? What have you kept? What have you rejected? How strong is your feeling of “home?” What do you consider your home, your sacred space? Where do you find peace and safety? Where do you not?

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