A Window is Where the Wall is Absent

The life impulse to express and to connect arises in me and in all of us. This blog is a celebration of these life impulses. Please feel free to join in the conversation or to just visit. There is a Family Photo Album beneath the posts so you can "meet" my family and I. Welcome!

Monday, August 2, 2010

"If you really knew me..."




I was very struck by this two minute video.

There are several good related YouTube videos based on an MTV show called "If you really knew me..."

Today I don't want to pretend to be happy.  Happiness comes and goes, and there seems to be a tendency to cover over feelings of unhappiness.  To hide those feelings both from myself and others.

If I'm pretending to be happy the first step toward happiness is recognizing my unhappiness.  Who doesn't live with blinders on regarding their own buried depths of pain?

~

17 comments:

Leslie said...

Thank you for posting this beautiful video Colleen. It looks as though all it takes is one puff of sweet and safe air to show us we can step over that 'line'. I love watching two hurley guys hugs each other. That is the BEST.
XOXO
-Leslie

Colleen Loehr said...

You're welcome Leslie, I'm so glad you enjoyed. I also loved watching the hugs between the enemy gang members and between the bully and the bullied...Maybe something like that can happen within the warring factions within my own psyche. Thanks for your comment Leslie.
XOXO
Colleen

MeANderi said...

Lovely Colleen... Living authentically! :) Allowing everything... Peace...

Colleen Loehr said...

Thanks Christine- I truly appreciate your comments. It seems in America especially we have a bad case of "put on your happy face." Nothing feels better than being genuine, and yet this often seems so terrifying...go figure.

MeANderi said...

Oh yes, I do "happy face" well - especially with family. I learned well. Sometimes being authentic feels way too vulnerable, way too revealing. It's much easier to wear the mask :) I love Halloween :) LOL

Leslie said...

Always thought the definitive sign of awakening would be when I stopped crying :-O Don't get me wrong. I don't cry all the time and many times cry from laughing so hard. However this 'practice' (somehow)is you-yo to the max. Make friends...I like that part. Just saw a great video with Pamela Wilson where she playfully walks someone (wish I could've seen that guy's face as she was instructing him)through allowing thoughts and feelings...making friends with them. It seemed obvious that it brought him great relief.
XOXO
-Leslie

Leslie said...

LOL...meant 'yo-yo' to the max not 'you-yo'. Actually you-YO may work :)
XOXO

Colleen Loehr said...

Doing "the happy face" is a good way to put it...And then it's so lonely when we get to the point that we don't even know what we really feel any more as we have gotten so good at hiding our feelings even from ourselves. Alienation from the truth of our own experience is a great impoverishment. Yet becoming more honest with ourselves is always possible and very enlivening. What I appreciate most about the writing on your blog Christine is your openness and honesty- it is music to my heart.

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi Leslie,

I have often heard awakening described as "the end of suffering" (by Buddha and others), and so it would seem that the end of crying would be an indication of awakening. Yet paradoxically, it seems that really feeling the tears is the way through them- as you point out in referring to the Pamela Wilson video. Do you have the title or link for Pamela's video? I'd love to watch it- what it means to truly feel our feelings is something that interests me greatly. Lots of times I will feel I am definitely feeling my feelings- that I am completely immersed in and drenched in some miserable mood or feeling- when in fact I am not really feeling the feeling, but resisting it by telling tons of stories about it...
Maybe the whole yo-yo thing is indicative of an underlying resistance and avoidance of "taking in" what is?
You-yo Lesile- thanks for your comments :)
XOXO
Colleen

Leslie said...

Hi Colleen and Christine,
Here's a link to Pamela's video from a Berkeley talk (password required, enter Pamela, with a capital "P") http://www.vimeo.com/7752565
What I was referring to, I believe, is on the 2nd video posted there.
Thanks to both of you for your posts on honesty of feelings. I have mentioned a secret that I must keep...one that is a burden and that has required pretty much complete isolation for many years. Because of this I have been unable to share freely. This, I'm afraid, has spilled over in to all of life...perhaps. It is true death or the loss of connection. The opposite of spiritual. I thought I could work through that leaving 'everything as it is' but as a friend told me once...it would be very hard. Any thoughts on this would be very welcome and appreciated.
XOXO and with much love for all your support,
-Leslie

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi Leslie,

The feelings of disconnection and separation and isolation are very painful, and I have felt this pain also for years, even though the specifics of my story are different. For example, feeling "fat" has made me feel set apart from others, and I could think of many other examples. We are all one in feeling so separate! Even though the specifics differ. There can be a recognition that we are not separate, even if the mind says we are, even if the story says we are, even if appearances say we are.

It seems to me that the ego can use secrets as a way to feel special and important, as a substitute for being, as a sense of drama, as a story to build a sense of identity around. I'm not saying that any of this is the case in your situation- I have no idea- but these might be some helpful questions to ask. Perhaps the thought "I have a big secret that is making me separate from others" has become a heavy thought form that is hogging all your consciousness? When something seems horribly serious, sometimes I ask myself: In 300 years from now, with this be important? I don't know, I am just tossing out a few thoughts. When the ego blows its cover it tends to have less hold on us, it can go from being terribly serious to even a bit amusing...I find myself laughing sometimes at how seriously I could take the body appearance- it was all smoke and mirrors- all mind-stuff- and yet it seemed like such a "real" problem. My example is trivial compared to a suffocating secret- but perhaps the ego dynamics are similar? I offer this in a spirit of compassion.
Love,
Colleen

Doreen said...

Hi Colleen,
I am glad You bring this show in to another arena of awareness. I noticed it, as we have MTV on here, (quite alot!! LOL!!)...and felt this is a great opening, on many levels!!

I did not read all the comments here; 'will be nice to see if this program is sweeping the country, if not the globe!!

Love,
doreen
XOXO

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi Doreen,

I ask myself how I would complete that sentence, "If you really knew me..."

A show like this makes me hopeful that we as human beings are coming out of our shells, so to speak, and being more honest and open. It would be good for us (meaning human beings in general) to come out of hiding so to speak and to admit we all harbor similar insecurities, etc, as well as strengths. I resonate with the words, "Know the truth, and the truth shall make you free", and there is always the possibility of being more truthful with ourselves and with each other, and experiencing freedom in this honesty.

Thanks so much for your comments Doreen- I'm happy to hear you are already familiar with this program-maybe there could be a version for adults as well as teens? That would be an interesting kind of reality show...

Love,
Colleen
PS I have given most of your cards to my daughter with various notes written inside and she has loved them- thanks again for adding to the beauty of the world through your photography.

Momo Luna said...

Hi Colleen,

yes i know this from MTV. These videos are powerful! I also learn my kids not to judge people just by how they look etc... Because teenagers do that often, not realizing how they hurt others.

I also learned how to put on a happy face or to be silent about feelings of unhappiness and sorrow.

Thank yo for posting this. :-)

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi Momo Luna,

So many of us have learned to hide our feelings...maybe we should start a club "You don't have to put on a happy face."
It's good to hear you are familiar with this MTV program- there is so much healing and power in honest communication.
I am grateful to you for your comments, even though we are separated by thousands of miles, we clearly have much in common.

Marguerite Manteau-Rao said...

Yes, being honest with oneself,

and,

also refrain from whining when I am visited by unhappiness.

a fine line to tread carefully.

May you be happy!

Colleen Loehr said...

Thanks so much for visiting and for your comments Marguerite. I really enjoyed reading your recent Huffington Post article about being willing to be present for irritations- a great topic, and wonderful to bring in Rumi's "The Guest House". My husband and I read your recent blog post about the four noble truths yesterday and I was VERY struck by your discussion of how suffering (dukkha) comes first, and THEN craving arises. What is craved is the desire to be without the dukkha. This parallels what Tolle says in CD#1 of "Even the Sun Will Die"- he says we feel the ache of being disconnected from our essence- and this suffering drives us into intense craving for substitutes for being.

I am very grateful to you for a major light-bulb moment that occurred when reading your blog.

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Greetings. I am a psychiatrist working at a state hospital, and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at University of Missouri Medical School. I am also a wife and mother of three grown children. Qigong has profoundly changed my life for the better. I am interested in connecting with other people interested in qigong.

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