Monday, September 19, 2011
Emote. It's OK. You're a human.
One part of being healthy has to do with noticing, and being guided by, emotion. I know, I KNOW, within my society, the rational is always considered the most valid point of view. Emotions are thought to be frivolous, extraneous, bothersome. I know people who ignore most emotions, or try to at least. In Washington DC, anger is an acceptable emotion, but other emotions are dismissed with great disdain. Don't ask me why anger is OK.
I utterly and completely disagree that being rational is the end-all, be-all of anything. Any definition of healthy, if you ask me, includes balance. We must temper our bossy, tyrannical, rational functions with the more mysterious and nonsensical realm of emotion. We are emotional beings as well as rational beings. Without a balance of both, how can we call ourselves healthy? It isn't rational!
Emotions are messengers, they arise from physiological changes within the body that are a part of our survival instincts. When emotion becomes conscious, that's when we realize we're feeling something, but that consciousness comes after the fact. People who study these things write that though it's possible to mask some of the facial expressions that are a part of emotion, it's not possible to actually forego the emotion itself.
I look to my emotional states in order to understand whether a particular line of thought, a situation, or an experience is healthy or toxic, or both, or somewhere inbetween. If I feel gratitude, for instance, then whatever I'm doing or thinking about is surely a healing balm for body and soul. When I feel bitter or fearful, it's time to jettison whatever creepy thoughts I'm entertaining, or get out of whatever situation I'm in.
I rely heavily on the deep, instinctual, brainstem wisdom of my emotions, oh yeah. How are you feeling right now, this very moment? Your emotions can help you, I promise!
Happy Monday (If you are happy, then whatever you're doing? It's good.) Shalom.
Glowering people at Eastern Market. Toxic emotions ongoing for those poor people. Or it was bright and they were squinting.