The Body as a Labyrinth

On the grounds of many churches and meditation centers one finds labyrinths. Those wishing to plumb their inner depths walk these paths in meditative contemplation. As the trail spirals inward, appreciation of the journey increases; experience in the labyrinth becomes … Continue reading

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Dancing toward Life

Waves move all around us, rolling across oceans and breaking upon shores. They propagate through air as music and speech. They speed through rock during earthquakes. My father was a professor of wave mechanics, so I grew up knowing waves … Continue reading

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Instruction from Invertebrates

The scent of brine wafts all around. A chill breeze blows in from the west. I am seated on a bluff above a small cove ringed by a sandy beach. After midnight, the solitude nearly palpable, the Pacific Ocean almost … Continue reading

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Walking a Narrower Road

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. –Robert Frost In recent entries I’ve explored the nature of choice and identity. Today I want to step … Continue reading

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The Accidental Self

Is who we become in life decided by chance, or by choice? Our genetic composition was determined when our parents (and all prior ancestors) selected mates, but these weren’t our decisions, so our stock of genes is a chance outcome as far as we’re concerned. Likewise, the quality of … Continue reading

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Out of the Casino and into the Arms of Life

In my last entry I described how emotional healing proceeds by means of Ten Steps Forward, Nine Steps Back. That essay grew out of my recent mood profile: for the last year or so I’ve enjoyed long stretches of expansive … Continue reading

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Healing after Trauma: Ten Steps Forward, Nine Steps Back

Most of us have suffered psychological wounds. Just as the body can be damaged, so can the mind. But the similarity ends there, because mental and physical injuries heal by different means. At another time I’ll explore physical healing in … Continue reading

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The Most Important Key to Healthy Aging

In my recent post, 4 Ways to Embrace Aging, I offered five hints but should have offered a sixth. What’s most important when growing older, I believe, is to treat the body with compassion. There is a temptation to micro-manage … Continue reading

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4 Tips for Improving Self-Esteem

Low self-esteem, which is just another term for shame, is very common in our culture. It especially afflicts those who grew up abused, neglected, or bereaved. Here are some simple tips for building confidence. 1. Be Fair Everyone suffers from … Continue reading

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5 Tips for Healing after Childhood Adversity

1. Reframe Vulnerabilities Those of us who experienced abuse, grief, or neglect during childhood feel different from those who didn’t. We are more easily hurt, which leads to withdrawal or rage. We feel less confident in ourselves, which leads to … Continue reading

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