Archive for the Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum Category

I’m back

Posted in Confessions of a Mad Philosopher, Crazy Zen Wisdom, Crossing the Abyss, Escape Velocity, gratitutde, Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum, Zen on July 13, 2016 by dreamlanddancing

This is only the second time I have posted spontaneously since I started this blog.

Due to a back injury, I was incapacitated for nearly two months now, and am preparing to go back to work and resume normal activities of daily living.

Trust me, if I am in too much pain to post…all I could do was meditate, medicate, and try to leave my body; sometimes putting pen to paper to scratch out an idea that I did not want to forget.

I am most grateful for the experience. I frequently write on or around the subject of emotional pain, and I am no stranger to physical trauma, but I had lost touch with how pain can eventually create a sort of “slingshot effect” some call the “sub zone”. It was enlightening.

For me, it sent me to escape velocity spiritually.

Today I suddenly picked up a beautiful Fender Stratocaster that was given to me out of the gratitude a very dear friend felt for a favor that Suki and I had done out of love in her moment of need.

I sketched out the bare bones of a song I suddenly heard in my head that I slowly replicated on my instrument. It has been a very long time since that muse has whispered in my ear. I wrote some notations to make sure I don’t loose that moment, or those voicings and harmonies.

Suffice it to say, I am back; all around me, energies are flowing and Kaizen is in the air. All around me, what I had lost is slowly returning.

Some of it is material, and was badly needed, but the really important ethereal and occult and emotional/spiritual/transcendental blessings seemingly came out of the universe itself.

I became a paramedic to try to do penance for some of my previous actions; one day, I realized that just not being a bad person doesn’t necessarily make you a very good person. I had a lot of Karmic debts to pay. What followed nearly killed me and cost me my relative sanity more than once. I am not complaining; again I say I am NOW filled with gratitude for all of it.

I’m back.

Namasté
नमस्ते
Chazz Vincent

07/12/2016

 

 

On Letting Go, Part II

Posted in A Womens Flower, Enhanced and Fortified non-fiction, Letting Go, Love, Mature Theme, Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum, NSFW, Polyamory, Possibly Dangerous to Everyone with tags , , on May 12, 2015 by dreamlanddancing

On Letting Go, Part II

(Love)

When they first acknowledged their mutual attraction, he had described his feelings for her in a poem entitled “Pandora’s Box”. Although he already feared they were crossing a point of no return, neither of them ever intended to upset the delicate balance of forces that were necessary for both of their families to remain intact.

They knew it would be difficult to maintain sufficient discretion to avoid being swept away by emotion and passion. They loved their spouses and children too much, despite the longings they felt that had been ignored at home for too long.

They each had told their respective spouses of their friendship, and initially neither of them had gotten particularly alarmed, partly because both couples had been swingers long before the romance had fizzled, but Elvis had definitely left the building a long time ago.

He had once told her, shortly before she volunteered, that he supposed he needed to find a woman as committed to her family as he was to his. He did not wish to replace his wife any more than she wanted to replace her husband.

Neither she nor her husband were completely on board with polyamory, and at that point, neither was his wife. It was acceptable to screw other people (especially if they were together when it happened), but to express feelings of affection, let alone love was most definitely not, although it was she who first spoke the words.

They believed that the tender affection that was developing between them would allow them to trust the mutual respect and deference that would be required of them to nurture each other in a way that they could take back to their families, so as to inspire and energize the romances that had been so significant in their absence at home for too long.

Seeing himself as reflected in her eyes was spell-binding. Her admiration and love for him transformed how he now saw himself, and he suspected it was doing the same for her.

They knew it would not be easy but they had the highest and best intentions for everyone in their lives…including each other, and they believed in each other in a way that had taught them to believe in themselves again. They also believed that, no matter what or where it all might end, that they would remain close friends forever.

It didn’t matter that it would be difficult. The Pearl of Great Price is believed to be daunting to acquire, but they trusted in their hearts that they could accomplish anything together, although in the process they had unwittingly stumbled into The Kingdom of Heaven.

And when it was over, he only wished to be able to let go of her without letting go of the love he felt, or the feelings he had experienced…welcome to Hell.

Forget Pandora’s Box…it now seemed as if it would have been easier to put the smoke back in the cigarette.

It had been a year since he had seen her last. She worked in an eye clinic that was in the same building as his doctor’s office. It was also the location of his son’s eye doctor. He knew she was there, but had avoided contact with her. It had been much too painful for both of them when they were forced to stop seeing each other, and they really never had the chance to even say goodbye.

Although they never had any issues with each other, their spouses had plenty, and it had been because of them that they were forced to end it. It had started as a workplace romance, and she had been terminated suddenly and without warning, partly due to her alcoholism, of which he had only the faintest inklings.

Six weeks later, despondent, drunk, and unemployed, she tried to take her own life, and went into rehab.

They had been the most unlikely-looking couple one could imagine. He was short-statured, muscular, but a bit overweight, as well as twenty-five years her senior. He had been a charming rascal in his youth, but those days were far behind him and he felt dead inside. The greatest love of his life had become estranged to him, after two decades of marriage.

The year they got married, she was fourteen years old.

By the time they met, he had come to believe that he doubted he could even be attracted to anyone who would want to fuck him.

Not that his wife wasn’t quite beautiful herself (and also much younger than he), but it had been over four years since she had expressed any desire to make love to him. She had even told their eldest son that “…It’s just over…there’s nothing left….”

He had first noticed this woman destined to become his work-spouse when they were moved into adjacent cubbies, but she was six feet tall, blonde, thin, much too young and beautiful and had a sweet personality that matched her perfect figure. Although they quickly began to engage in playful banter, he did not even dare to hope that it would become something so intimate so much more quickly than he could have ever thought possible.

She said her incongruous Hispanic surname came from her black Puerto-Rican father to whom she bore absolutely no resemblance. It also turned out that she had in fact not married the father of her two children, although they had lived as man and wife for over thirteen years.

Their mutual senses of humor were uncanny. Despite the fact that he was often self-absorbed, complicated and irreverently intellectual while she was completely straightforward and unselfconsciously goofy, they fed off of each other like George Burns and Gracie Allen.

Even he could not explain how well she seemed to get him, despite his frequently obscure references and viewpoint. Their antics and repartee buoyed the spirits of everyone around them in an environment that was both stressful and oppressive.

Surprisingly, despite her beauty she had become somewhat introverted and a bit of a wallflower before receiving his admiring provocations. Her husband seemed to play upon her insecurities with cruel criticism and too little acknowledgement or validation, perhaps because he feared her beauty.

A friend of his had once confided to him that he had always regarded her as plain, introverted and shy before either their romance, or the blooming of her blossom. Everyone in the building noticed the change in her countenance, and attributed it to some heretofore unrealized qualities and talents that he must have possessed, which completely changed how everyone regarded him and caused no small speculation about where his talents had lain (or laid depending on how you speculated or conjugated), which helped explain why their romance was so graciously accepted by their peers.

They had worked together in somewhat close proximity for over a year before even he had noticed her at all before, but he seemed to bring out the clown and the extrovert in her, and she loved him for it.

Without her around he could be more than a little aggressive, critical, intimidating, confrontational, negative, and depressed. He did not do much to filter anything that came into his mind or out of his mouth. He shocked many of his fellow employees and offended almost everyone at one time or another.

A friend once described him as an “acquired taste…like Scotch Whiskey, Cuban Cigars or anal sex” but somehow when they were together his “big balls” and her good-natured sweetness seemed to make everyone smile…despite the fact that their scandalous mutual admiration and affection could not be ignored.

Although he was by nature more discrete, she unselfconsciously wore her emotions on her sleeve. They had the same lunch and break schedules, and everywhere they went she hung onto him as if she never wanted to let go. She towered over him and it was impossible to ignore their mutual idolatry.

It was odd to see them walk together, like watching a giraffe being escorted by a gorilla. Although they made the most unlikely looking couple, once you got used to seeing them, it made perfect sense.

He was quite the gourmet chef, while she on the other hand, could screw up hamburger helper. Once, when she had neglected to bring something to eat from home, he offered to share his meal. She had only tried once to make something for both of them….

After that, by mutual agreement, every day, he prepared his elaborate meals for both of them which they ate together on the patio.

One day a passing co-worker saw the pasta Florentine they were eating and said “How sweet…just like the Lady and the Tramp” whereupon she jokingly replied in a stage whisper to her paramour (as well as anyone within earshot) “Did he just call me a tramp?”

“…not unless he also just called me a lady” he replied.Their humor never seemed to miss a beat.

To look at him, he was in fact the picture of The Little Tramp, and he even had a tendency to walk like Chaplin’s most famous character. He had long ago abandoned the concept of “dress for success” for a telemarketer’s job where the public never saw him.

He jokingly referred to his wardrobe as “a walking clothesline” alluding to the first stanza of the Rolling Stones’ song Jigsaw Puzzle.

Cargo shorts, some kind of rock and roll tour t-shirt, sneakers, and either a Dickies work-shirt or a Florida (not Hawaiian) collared shirt worn open and not tucked in over the t-shirt like a sport coat and either a baseball cap or a Viet Nam-era “boonie hat” were his standard apparel yet it still was not ample warning for his sometimes outrageously unconventional personality.

It was originally only supposed to be short-term employment until something better came along…it never did.

In “previous lifetimes” he had been a chemist, a teacher, a film-maker and videographer, an audio engineer, a professional guitarist and recording-studio entrepreneur, a television repairman and cable-TV installer, armed body-guard, firearms instructor and general “gun-bum” before becoming a critical-care certified paramedic until Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder made even that impossible.

He never stayed in any field of employment for more than six years until he became a medic, and his romances and previous marriages were equally short-lived before he met his “Goddess” who had given him three children, two of which were his own.

Oddly, shortly after he had become infatuated with this Lolita (who herself was thirty-something) his sales figures went back through the roof despite a severely depressed economy.

As sweet and good-natured as she was, she was also a bit of a simpleton and all she desired was to be Eliza to his Henry Higgins.

Her name was Virginia but to everyone else (including her mother and husband) she was Ginger, although she confided to him that she thought it sounded too much like a stripper’s name. Of course, he called her Virginia, but much later, whether he crossed Virginia Avenue to go to work, or used ginger in some dish he prepared, or even when he drank gin, he could not seem to get her out of his mind.

Despite the fact that he and his wife had reconciled and renewed their own romance, there were only two times when he did not think of her at least once a day…when his mother had died and later, when his brother died. He neither tried to remember nor to forget her…but he had come to believe that it was inevitable that he would be forced to confront his attachment to their now-forbidden romance.

There would be other times, other places, other lovers for both of them, but their time was over. Like cut flowers that would either die unappreciated or be harvested and brought indoors to be admired, we are all here for just a moment, blossom and die.

Everything in between is a choice.

The last time he saw her it was impossible not to hear the catch in his voice as he watched her try to discretely brush a tear from her eye. They both realized they would never forget each other, nor would they ever be the same and that they would probably quietly carry each other in their hearts until the day they died.

As he stood there, he felt a distinct tearing sensation . It was like something was being ripped from his chest.

As he walked away, it was as if he felt the breath being sucked from his lungs, but instead of panicking, he just leaned into the sweet pain of his realization that it was finally possible to let go of his attachment for her without forgetting what their love had given them.

Somehow in the scheme of things, that was enough, and much more than he could have hoped for when they had crashed into each other so long ago.

On the long drive home, he tried to think of how to tell his wife about his revelations regarding their encounter without re-opening old wounds.

Nothing came to him until days later when he decided to write this story.

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent 05/08/2015

TTWDWW: Maybe someday, right after You Think it Can’t get any Worse…and then it Does Anyway….

Posted in A Dirty Mind is A Terrible Thing To Waste, Civil Liberties, Dangerous and Unsavory ideas that are possibly harmful to the weak-mided and overly simplistic and religious, Dirty, Erotica, Explicit Sexual Language, First Amendment Rights, Literotica, Mature Theme, Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum, Much Too Good For Children, NSFW, Philosophical Sexuality, Possibly Dangerous to Everyone, Post-Neo, Sex, The Power of the forbidden Word, The Talking Monkeys, This Thing we do with Words with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 24, 2015 by dreamlanddancing

This Thing We Do with Words, a slight return.

Part Eleven

Maybe someday, right after You Think it Can’t get any Worse…and then it Does Anyway….

It is also darkest before the Storm.

And so we come to ideas, concepts, and thoughts….

So much writing is formulaic, because if you want to get published…if you want a large following of readers, you have to consider that most film producers or publishers have so little imagination.

Every time new ground is allegedly broken in some area, the rush to judgment is to look for the next “Fifty Shades of Grey,” or whatever copy-cat trend is peaking at the time. Enough said.

Charlie Kaufman, Lana and Andy Wachowski, and Tom Tykwer remain some of the most notable exceptions to the rule as regards both screenwriters and directors. To my knowledge, they do not do erotica. That is unfortunate…for Erotica.

Virtually all great modern literature breaks, or at the very least bends whatever literary conventions and common period practices that are in place at that moment. Naked Lunch, Finnegan’s Wake, Howl, and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas are all good examples for different reasons, although none of them are erotic, despite the fact that when they were originally published, Naked Lunch, as well as most of Allen Ginsberg’s writings were considered “dirty”, and subject to censorship.

Originality makes its own rules as it goes along while the rest of the world tries to follow or copy it, but only after first suppressing it. We are long since past the time for Erotica to do the same.

We’ve had more than enough suppression of art and culture in general for too long. Politics and Religion are the root cause, but as long as citizens are willing to trade their civil rights and liberties for safety and security, from an ever-increasingly parental and disapproving government, it will only get worse.

It’s hard to believe that it has been over fifty years since the sixties (the generation that took twenty years to act out), which may have been the last time our culture openly embraced the eternally questioning mind.

Fellini stated that he believed that in some ways, censorship helped stimulate creativity by forcing more creative ways to work around the limitations it imposed…perhaps.

Born out of reaction to the regimes of Dwight Eisenhower, Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, racial prejudice and discrimination in general, Vietnam and decades of sexual and cultural repression, a political and cultural revolt was inevitable.

In this country, it provoked brazen challenges to tremendous social, cultural and political evils and unconscionable repression, fueled by a general state of mind that openly rejected hypocrisy and injustice as the worlds of Art, Film, Literature, Music, Sexual Revolution, as well as Political and Cultural norms exploded in defiance of a world that had gone wrong for too long.

“…I stood around Saint Petersburg

when I saw it was the time for a change….”

(and)

“I watched with glee as your kings and queens

set the barricades

for the gods they made.

…Pleased to meet you…

Hope you guessed my name….”

(Rolling Stones/”Sympathy for the Devil”)

It has been far, far too long, and maybe our time will come again, if we but choose to stand up and howl…not to repeat ourselves, but to re-invent ourselves timelessly, proudly and shamelessly.

Nothing is sexier than a truly authentic person living their life passionately and fearlessly with boundless curiosity, little reservation or caution, and few regrets.

Time to fish, cut bait, or swim.

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

04/23/2015

 

TTWDWW: Shock the Monkey

Posted in A Dirty Mind is A Terrible Thing To Waste, Confessions of a Mad Philosopher, criticism, Dangerous and Unsavory ideas that are possibly harmful to the weak-mided and overly simplistic and religious, Dirty, Enhanced and Fortified non-fiction, Explicit Sexual Language, First Amendment Rights, inspiration, Mature Theme, Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum, Much Too Good For Children, NSFW, Philosophical Sexuality, Possibly Dangerous to Everyone, Post-Neo, Sex, The Power of the forbidden Word, The Talking Monkeys, This Thing we do with Words with tags , , , on April 24, 2015 by dreamlanddancing

This Thing We Do with Words, a slight return.

Part Ten

Shock the Monkey

I can think of two descriptive phrases I have used that were almost too off-putting to have considered using, and yet…the image that came to my mind as I envisioned particular feelings or situations left me compelled to use them.

One is clearly not erotic, and the other one is more of a sensual prelude to develop the erotic aspect of a particular character.

“…that sudden realization came upon him like hungry wolves running down lost children in the snow.” (There is nothing sexy about the phrase of course, but that was not my intention.)

Or (In describing one woman seducing another):

“She found herself transfixed and powerless to resist, like a child being lured into a van by some familiar stranger with candy, or a puppy…”

These may still be too bizarre a juxtaposition of images to be accessable to most readers as erotica, but I firmly believe that it is through the eyes of artists and writers that we learn to expand our visions of the world…it’s a dirty job, but somebody has to do it.

It would be safe to say that both are forbidden images. I am neither a pedophile, nor do I take pleasure in the misfortune of children… EVER…but it is in the very nature of the forbiden word or image that empowers it.

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

04/23/2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This Thing We Do with Words, a slight return, pt. II

Posted in A Dirty Mind is A Terrible Thing To Waste, Biggest Sex Organ, Collaboration, Dangerous and Unsavory ideas that are possibly harmful to the weak-mided and overly simplistic and religious, Dirty, Enhanced and Fortified non-fiction, Enhanced and Fortified non-fiction, Explicit Sexual Language, First Amendment Rights, gratitutde, His Penis Her Vagina, Imp Of The Perverse, Jantor To The Temple Of The Holy of Holies, Liason, Mature Theme, Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum, Much Too Good For Children, NSFW, Philosophical Sexuality, Polyamory, Possibly Dangerous to Everyone, Sex, Suki, The Id, the willing suspension of disbelief, This Thing we do with Words, Vagina with tags , , , , , , , , on April 24, 2015 by dreamlanddancing

This Thing We Do with Words, a slight return, pt. II

My Muses

One of the things we do with words is to inspire. Writers do not live in a vacuum, but no matter what we do within our own lives, nothing beats a different perspective from outside of ourselves to introduce new ideas, questions and influences.

Those people are my muses, my wells of inspiration from which I drink, be it the refreshingly cold, clear water of underground springs fed by mountain streams from far away or warm, mysterious draughts from jungle pools or even hot, flavored waters, exuding enticing perfumes of unknown origins.

Some provide an occasional cautious sip, while others compel me to slake my thirst until it is sated. Some help me clear my mind while others intoxicate me in inexplicable ways like a vampire on a blood-feast, but I have been blessed to be influenced by several for whom I am most grateful.

This post was initially inspired by a discussion of pet words for the genitalia of either sex as well as the associated body parts or functions one might be inclined to use in erotic writings, to which we would aspire to attain the level of Literotica.

Jayne of DiaryIncarnate at WordPress prompted a renewal of the discussion when she recently made reference to what she referred to as a “Dickipedia”. I am a regular visitor to her website and I am quite fond of her poetry, but both her prose and verse frequently give me “paws” to think and reflect upon her eternally questioning mind.

Although we have never met in person, she has a real talent for bringing out both the rogue and the gentleman in me, and I sense that I am not alone in that assessment of her effect on men.

About a year ago, Anastasia, the charming and provocative astraltravler of WordPress and I collaborated on a piece called His Penis, Her Vagina, to address the plethora of synonyms for the two major taxons regarding the plumbing of the sexes, but we quickly realized that many terms, like Meat-Whistle, One-eyed Trouser Snake, Cooter, or Poontang (sometimes hyphenated), are at best considerably more hilarious than erotic, and at worst just plain disgusting. Some were both.

Later collaborations between Anastasia, with my wife (Yen4)Suki and myself have proven much more worthwhile and productive, although we have been a bit pensive about writing about the results…and I don’t know why, because none of us are what one would call shy.

Suki and I had collaborated on a piece that was essentially her story over six months ago, that to date remains unpublished. All I did was help her organize and word the story, as she related her experiences to me, but it is a great piece in more ways than one, especially because it needed so little embellishment or enhancement.

As erotic adventures go, I would wish that all women could experience such a milestone adventure on a milestone birthday.

Her thirtieth was almost as good, but I was there to witness, encourage and participate with her on that occasion.

That’s just the way we roll. I hope she shares it soon.

I must be the luckiest man in the world to be so inspired by these three muses.

One is mine, but she is too precious and free-spirited to hoard or keep to myself. Another is shared and comes and goes like a tropical breeze, the muse of my muse. Only the third is a woman of mystery whom I cannot distinguish from Oasis or Mirage; who comes to me on tiptoes as silent as an assassin to whisper enticing provocations into my ear like a long-lost lover from another lifetime.

Although the initial impetus of this post centered around erotica, it quickly developed a life of its own and ran off the rails onto the much larger tracks leading to the subject of creative expression and inspiration in general.

For that reason, I have decided to publish it in installments.

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

04/20/2014

 

Know Thyself

Posted in Acknowledgement, adversity, Confessions of a Mad Philosopher, Crossing the Abyss, Ctical Incident Stress Disorder, Dangerous and Unsavory ideas that are possibly harmful to the weak-mided and overly simplistic and religious, Depersonalization Disorder, Depersonalization Syndrome, DPD, Emergency Medical Services, EMS War Stories, Enhanced and Fortified non-fiction, Explicit Sexual Language, Knowledge, Mature Theme, Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum, Much Too Good For Children, NSFW, Possibly Dangerous to Everyone, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Sentience, The Knowledge of Good and Evil, Theater of the Mind, Zen on March 15, 2015 by dreamlanddancing

Know Thyself

While conducting research for the final editing of my latest novel, I literally stumbled upon a concept that has radically improved my coping mechanisms…something of which I have admittedly been in dire need for a very long time.

I recognize that self-diagnosis is a slippery slope, but after a great deal of inquiry and assessment, I realized that I simply felt better knowing that not only was I not alone, but also that the simple recognition of my condition is in itself instrumental in my own recovery.

Just as it has been said that those who would try to act as their own attorney have a fool for a client, so also it is that those who would attempt to act as their own psychiatrist may by definition have a crazy person as a patient, but it all depends on how much they want to get better because in this case, the physician has to “heal thyself”.

No one can figure it out for you; once you are given the map and the compass, you only have to find yourself.

Recognition provides opportunities for alternate behaviors that target the isolation, and initiate theraputic responses.

For that reason, I am sharing this with my readers. Some of you may benefit from it yourselves; some of you may know someone who will.

Wikipedia describes Depersonalization Disorder (or Syndrome) as:

The core symptom of depersonalization disorder is the subjective experience of “unreality in one’s sense of self”, and as such there are no clinical signs.

(This is probably because DPD victims are taught to cope, to move on and to ignore, mask, or overcome the symptoms. Divorcing oneself from one’s feelings enables a pattern of denial that allows the sufferer to continue to function despite overwhelming toxic stimulae.)

(Please note that I have added emphasis and comments throughout this text. This is typical of one of them. Also, the first time I saw the initialization of the syndrome, it sounded like a term of art from the Kink/Fet community…but that could just be me, I suppose.)

Depersonalization Disorder is frequently described as feeling disconnected from one’s physicality; feeling like one is not completely occupying the body; not feeling in control of one’s speech or physical movements; and feeling detached from one’s own thoughts or emotions; experiencing one’s self and life from a distance; a sense of just going through the motions; feeling as though one is in a dream or movie; and even out-of-body experiences.

People who are diagnosed with depersonalization also experience an almost uncontrollable urge to question and think about the nature of reality and existence as well as other deeply philosophical questions.

(Or is it more a matter of course that people are more prone to experience epiphanies and profound realizations that are triggered by the emotional, physical and sensory overload experienced as a result of Critical Incident Stress?)

(Those who choose to put themselves in harms way as a career often try to divine and attach meaning or purpose on a grand scale as part of the troubleshooting and diagnostic processes of our respective careers and life-long ambitions. This would appear to be an effort to prevent or resolve DPD by Rationalization.)

Individuals who experience depersonalization can feel divorced from their own personal physicality by sensing their body sensations, feelings, emotions and behaviors as not being theirs. This in effect, is the exact opposite of Sentience (as self-awareness).

Also, a recognition of Self breaks down (hence the name). Depersonalization can result in very high anxiety levels, which can intensify these perceptions even further.

A diagnosis is made when the disassociation is persistent and interferes with the social and/or occupational functions necessary for everyday living.

(Oh really? Just how fucked up do you have to be for this to be recognized? …Wouldn’t these people benefit from recognition and help long before it gets to that point? Even when I was that severely disordered, I never even knew that such a diagnosis existed, and the subject certainly never came up during numerous therapy sessions with many different mental healthcare professionals.)

Depersonalization disorder is thought to be caused largely by severe traumatic lifetime events, (such as the death of a spouse, or child, divorce, or other emotional losses involving a loved one), childhood abuse (verbal, emotional and sexual), accidents, natural disasters, war, torture, “…justifiable self-defense with extreme prejudice”, panic attacks and bad drug experiences.

(For many of us, “bad drug experiences” were regarded as failures to assimilate a positive outcome from an extremely challenging situation…after all, no matter what you experience, it all came from within you. You cannot fear the Poison Thought. Embrace it, and you will find meaning.)

Although the disorder is an alteration in the subjective experience of reality, it is not related to psychosis, as sufferers maintain the ability to distinguish between their own internal experiences and the objective reality of the outside world.

During either episodic or continuous depersonalization, sufferers are able to distinguish between reality and fantasy, and their grasp on reality remains stable at all times. (…or at least as much as it ever was…you could be completely delusional, for instance, and be quite stable.)

(For some, Zen meditation can lead to a paradoxical state of mind wherein the connection between the individual and all life, energy and matter is only recognized by detaching oneself from all personal biases and attachments including words themselves. Without a strong sense of Self, this strongly resembles DPD.)

Factors that tend to diminish symptoms are comforting interpersonal interactions (How about Romance?), intense physical or emotional stimulation, (especially sex) and relaxation (afterwards). Distracting oneself (by engaging in conversation, sexual escapades, meditation, or watching a movie for example) may also provide temporary symptomatic relief.

(Which does nothing to cure the condition, whereas “comforting interpersonal interactions” practically is the cure, or at the very least a good indicator of progress.)

Some other factors that are identified as relieving symptom severity are diet and/or exercise as well as psycho-pharmacological agents; while alcohol and fatigue are listed by others as to cause worsening of symptoms.

The exact cause of depersonalization is unknown, although bio-psycho-social correlations and triggers have been identified. Childhood interpersonal trauma – emotional abuse in particular – is a significant predictor of a diagnosis.

The most common immediate precipitators of the disorder are severe stress (either chronic or acute), major depressive disorder and panic; as well as hallucinogen ingestion.

(Personally, I never met a hallucinogen I didn’t like.)

Patients demonstrate abnormal cortisol levels and basal activity. (Frequently, the diurnal circadian rhythms are also disrupted.)

Studies found that patients with DPD could be distinguished from patients with clinical depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, (although the conditions may also exist concommitantly).

It has been thought that depersonalization has been caused by a biological response to dangerous, life-threatening or profoundly tragic situations which causes heightened senses and emotional neutrality.

Depersonalization disorder may be associated with dysregulation of the hypothalamic-adrenal-pituitary disorder, the area of the brain involved in the “fight-(fuck)-or-flight” response.

(I honestly think that is a dangerous combination…it may keep you alive, but it also facilitates detachment from our actions in order to enable us to survive the unthinkable consequences.)

As I read the above description, I realized that it was a condensed synopsis of my life thus far, which for me, meant that I now had an identifiable, recognized series of causative agents to explain a condition that I had not yet discretely identified despite the fact that even my earliest childhood memories are filled with elements of those descriptions.

Until very recently, I believed that my adult experiences, including a twenty-two year career in Emergency Medical Services, five failed marriages, the death of a spouse, and a lifetime of bad choices and dangerous living were all that factored into my condition.

It has only been after careful re-consideration of my childhood and early adult life that I began to recognize how the pre-disposing anticedents of my childhood set the stage for what was to follow; not because I did not have any choice, but because I did not know that I had one.

I now realize that it is long past time to make peace with myself, to forgive myself, and acknowledge the horrors I have either survived or created, congratulate myself for my achievements, and to embrace my life and loves like there is no tomorrow.

Unfortunately, Depersonalization Disorder patients do not process emotionally salient material in the same way as do healthy individuals.

As a result, I have been in denial for so long, that every time I open the door even the tiniest bit, so as to allow my emotions to touch me, to allow even the happiest or subtle moments of joy to be experienced long enough to be felt and savored I am overwhelmed by feelings so strong that they feel as if they will tear me apart as I am swept away…and heroes are not allowed to cry.

This is not a test.

This is not a drill.

This is not a movie.

This is not a dream.

This is real.

Every day is a miracle.

Every day is judgment day.

Be here now.

This is the only life you will ever recognize as yours.

I share these observations and information not to call attention to myself. It is not something most people would be inclined to admit. My own recovery is a work in progress.

If you know an armed services veteran, or a cop, paramedic, or firefighter, doctor or nurse, chances are that some aspect of Depersonalization Disorder/Syndrome either has or will affect them or someone they know or love eventually, depending on whether of not they were pre-disposed to it by early primal life experiences.

Perhaps aspiring heroes are born out of the emotional needs created by dysfunctional or abusive childhoods, further predisposing them to harm from critical incident stress and isolation as adults.

The very same tools that we were taught to use to prevent us from becoming emotionally attached to the critical stress incidents that hurt and damage us as we are thrust into them have the potential to distance us from the rest of the world as well, long after the turmoil is over.

Awareness and recognition are the first steps toward healing.

Namasté

नमस्ते

You Already Know….

Posted in Confessions of a Mad Philosopher, Jantor To The Temple Of The Holy of Holies, Memoires of a Post-Neo Dharma Bum, Sentience, The Liberation Through Hearing, Theater of the Mind, Vision Quest, Zen with tags , , , , , , on March 13, 2015 by dreamlanddancing

You Already Know….

I woke up thinking about how each of us are in fact the biggest stumbling blocks to our own success, which prompted me to share these ideas as they came to me.

Make a list of your dreams. A dream with a plan is a goal.

Rate them according to both their costs as well as their rewards.

Now write down all the things you can ever think of having used as excuses for why you did not achieve those dreams of goals.

Do not try to be kind or spare your feelings, but do not be afraid to see the humor in your folly. Defensiveness will block your objectivity. Regard everything in your life with enough detached compassion to accept your own best advice. You have nothing to hide from yourself.

Ask yourself if you are willing to give up those excuses in order to achieve what you desire.

And once you make up your mind, stick to it until proven otherwise…preferably more than once.

All is folly, so don’t be afraid of making the wrong decisions. What you need to do is to ask yourself “What do I really want?”

“If it all stopped tomorrow, and I had just one moment to reflect, what would I regret not having done?”

“Have I lived authentically and fearlessly? What have I sacrificed of myself to conform to the desires of others?”

“Who is dragging this corpse around?”

You can dance like a meat-puppet while someone else chooses the songs and pulls the strings, or you can figure it out for yourself, accept responsibility for your actions and pick and choose from the vast reservoir of humanity’s collective consciousness for inspiration, counter-point and companionship…and love yourself.

Namaste.

नमस्ते

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