In large part, the past 25 years of my life has been a guided revelation of what creates suffering for men, and what can bring them back alive.
On the one hand, my professional world as a physician specializing in Forensic Pathology exposed me to the world of unexpected and premature death, often from external violence, but much more frequently from suicide and substance abuse. On the other hand, thanks to the power of grace, I became involved in Breakthrough, a locally based community workshop for men, first a as a participant, and then as a volunteer, a role which is now central to my life since retirement from death investigation. Because the primary focus of Breakthrough is helping men recover a sense of wholeness from the effects of unaddressed adverse childhood experiences, familial & cultural conditioning, and ingrained patterns of reacting, I have become cognizant of the seeds of our suffering as well as experienced in practices which can address it.
What does not work and, in fact, seems to aggravate suffering, is looking for relief outside of ourselves -- something or some body that can make us feel comfortable, complete, or "more alive." This is the root of myriad addictions as well as despair. Instead, boundless untapped resources for personal wellbeing lie inside each one of us, awaiting our curiosity, acceptance, and trust. One approach to looking inward is Focusing, a gentle, compassionate form of body-centered self inquiry, described by Eugene Gendlin and easily practiced alone, although more effective when performed in pairs or small groups (peer counselors). Focusing reveals and engages forms of implicit knowing that are not accessible through rational thought processes. As one learns how to welcome each "guest" that appears inside without favor or disfavor, there is revealed something far beyond what is already known. Patiently being with and openly receiving each gift, moment to moment, from deep inside enables a fuller and deeper appreciation for what it means to be alive in human form.
My intention is to promote the practice of self awareness and unconditional acceptance as path to wholeness and wellbeing. It is my hope that creation and distribution of supportive messages associated with symbolic images will engage the interest of the public and become a means to remind us of such life affirming practices. Please view my weekly journal, gallery of images, poetry, resources, & E-Book store.