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Therapy is NOT about Labeling --> It's about UN-labeling.

Oct 07, 2022

Having the true, authentic dialogue that is therapy is increasingly under pressure in many circles by Big Insurance, Big Academics, and Big Scientism (as opposed to science), etc. which are often all too eager to apply the methodology of the assembly-line model of education, the factory, and the cubicle to human beings and their emotions, thoughts, and pursuit of a flourishing life -- with negative results.

Too often I have seen people go to therapy and come out with a new negative self-definition, a "curse" so to speak, rather than being honored for the fullness of their personhood, potential, and the "embarrassment of riches" (McKenna's turn of phrase) that is their personal life and Life Ongoing.

Our food for thought today comes from the ending quote from Jon Frederickson's book (with a rather melodramatic title IMHO) The Lies We Tell Ourselves :

You Will Always Be Greater Than Our Understanding / Truth is an ocean; theory, a cup. We don't realize that those we love remain mysterious to us, even after decades together. Our loved ones are people whom we are always coming to know. And beneath our beliefs lies the unknown person, impenetrable to any ideas but embraceable and, thus, 'feelable.' Every person will always be greater than the theories in our heads. We no longer stand over others in a kind of superior 'overstanding.' We stand under [with / within ] a larger reality... To meet means walking in another person's shoes, encountering someone who is us, because nothing human is alien to us, and not us, because every person is unique. Every person is the center of the [web] universe. We are too. There are [infinite] many centers... We open ourselves to the person who tries to reach us and whom we try to reach. Or we ask that person to fit into our preconceptions. Yet experience [rather intuition / spirit] shows us that people were not put on earth to confirm our theories but to [outgrow] contradict them. If we try to fit people into our beliefs, we will never find their essence. As long as we love our images [more than them], we will never savor the surprise [risk, experience] of meeting the person behind them. We can imprison people in their histories and in our demands [or rather the demands of big bureaucracies like Big Insurance and Big Academics] ... [yet] Every person is unknowable. Each of us is a mysterious awareness... Theory, however wonderful, is merely a finger pointing toward us. Given the choice of embracing people or our ideas about them, we [can, could]... choose people. Then our thinking will expand to accommodate what is [going-growing-flowing]. Are we knowable? No, but we are embraceable [encounterable]. This is what we live in; the embrace." (p. 155-156)


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