Saturday, 17 October 2020

Look for hopeful people and situations

It was an exciting time to be a young boy with dreams of space exploration. Within a decade of Shepard's flight with Project Mercury, the United States sent Apollo 8 into space to orbit the moon. It was a watershed moment in history and a beacon of hope and optimism in an otherwise tumultuous year, 1968, which saw the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. Never before had astronauts ventured beyond a low Earth orbit. Never before had they orbited another body in space. A fourteen-year-old Ashby tuned in with the rest of the world to watch the live televised broadcast of the mission on Christmas Eve. The crew circled the moon ten times and took turns reading from the article of Genesis: In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. This essence is what is within each of us and everything (and all of nothingness). It was a spiritual death. It had come for who I had been as an identity. In place of that old identity, what I would call Grace, Spirit, or pure consciousness had taken over. Perhaps more accurately, this Grace had rebirthed me, as me, even while that consciousness continued to experience itself in the same body as before. Being in Love SUDDENLY, THE INSIDE OF my heart was searing, as if I had been stabbed by an invisible, white hot, blacksmith's rod. It was burning painfully from within the inside of my chest. The intense heat overwhelmed. The pain was like nothing I had ever felt.

The strong need to intervene will then do the rest. But the most relevant aspect of all is the bundle of stratagems that the codependent person puts in place to be with others, not to lose contact and to ensure that he or she is not left alone. We do not have to forget that the relationship with the codependent must always be lived between at least two people in which each one plays a more active or passive role, the controller and the controlled, stronger or weaker, etc So, the complexity ends up multiplying by two, as each one of the two main characters in codependency is reflected in the complexity of each another. We Experience Anxiety and Depression We often accompany our propensity towards others with symptoms of anxiety and depression. This is most likely the easiest behavior to understand from a clinical point of view. It is the aspect most directly related to our physiology and to understand it, it is necessary to understand the physiological meaning of anxiety and depression. Starting from anxiety: if something causes us fear, the immediate consequence is to feel just fear. If this something is a recurrent danger that could frighten us at any moment and in various situations, the biochemistry of fear changes, and produces anxiety. If then our recurring fear --later anxiety--, has to do with the loss, then our physiology leads us to depression. To put things plainly, the real reason behind Machiavelli's guy crush on the young Borgia was because he was a decisive fellow who knew how to be merciless when needed. More than that, he was self-sufficient. Sure, he was born with power practically thrust upon him but unlike others, he did not rely on his father's help. He was not afraid to get his hands dirty (or bloody). However, when Cesare Borgia's father died, he undoubtedly lost a huge chunk of his influence. Moreover, he was also suffering from poor health. All this contributed to his downfall - much to Machiavelli's disappointment, of course. The lesson here is that it's never enough to be born into a position of power. You need to find a way to keep that power and to make that power your own. Example: If you became the boss of a company because your father was the previous boss, you have to recognize that your father's successes were his own.

The Apollo 8 crewmembers also took dazzling photographs, the most famous of which was called Earthrise. Seeing a picture of the earth from space would change how humanity understood itself. From thousands of miles away, our planet appeared tiny and fragile. On December 25, 1968, a day after the photograph was taken, the poet Archibald MacLeish wrote in the New York Times: To see the earth as it truly is, small and blue and beautiful in that eternal silence where it floats, is to see ourselves as riders on the earth together, brothers on that bright loveliness in the eternal cold--brothers who know now they are truly brothers. In the decades since the first human beings went into space, fewer than six hundred astronauts, cosmonauts, and taikonauts have had the chance to see the whole earth from this elevated perspective. Jeff is one of them. In 1999, when he was forty-five years old, he realized his boyhood dream, traveling to space as a pilot for the first female shuttle commander, Eileen Collins. Their mission was to deploy a large telescope called Chandra, a complement to the Hubble telescope that would take pictures of high energy events, like black holes, exploding stars, and colliding galaxies. Ashby and Collins were scheduled to lift off on the thirtieth anniversary of the moon landing. The time from liftoff to space was 8 minutes--8 minutes from being on the earth to being 150 miles above it in orbit. It seemed like I could have easily stopped breathing because of the intensity. I had to will the breath to continue. My hands clutched at the outside of my chest. Other than clutching my chest, I don't know that I remember much of anything about the moment this incredible pain started. I don't remember seeing anything, or if I was still kneeling on the floor or sitting on the bed. I don't remember if my eyes were open or closed. I don't know how much time passed. Based on the events that followed, my best guess is that I was still in that cabin room, only I saw nothing. However, in that moment, I went from excruciating pain to incomprehensible, excruciating bliss. This was somewhat of a paradox, a continuation and a culmination of everything that had happened.

In codependency, loss, abandonment, and detachment are the recurring fears of the codependent. Among other things, being so empathetic and oriented towards others, makes us feel their fears as if they were their own ones. It's now easy to understand why codependency is often accompanied by anxiety and depression. We could say that behind the great success of the self-help articles against anxiety and anguish there is, also, a large group of codependent readers. We Need to Delegate Our Decisions In codependency, it is difficult to make decisions independently. This behavior also invades numerous daily decisions that seem to be impossible enigma without having advice and reassurance from people we consider important. This is a constant of codependency and very often our explicit request for advice is suggesting an implicit request to push other persons to decide for us. We can be really and sincerely grateful if their final decision satisfies us. Having support in the decision makes us feel accompanied and lets us consolidate the bond with the person who helped us decide, and, in this case, codependency brought us a pleasant and positive element in our life. You need to make a name for yourself as well. Make sure that your subordinates respect you not because of what your predecessor had done but because of what you've done. Furthermore, just because you were born into power, that doesn't mean that it's yours forever. Some hotshot somewhere is going to challenge your authority and criticize how you run things. You have to be prepared for that. There was a void of power after the decline of the Borgia family. Many wished to fill it. In 1503, Julius the Second (born Giuliano della Rovere) achieved papacy. In 1508, he established the league of Cambrai consisting of Spain, the Holy Roman Empire, and France to control the rebelling Venetians. After the defeat of the Venetian militia, Julius came to be threatened by France's power over Italy, so he then set his mind to getting rid of them.

Talk about breaking the roof. From space, Ashby saw the earth as a sphere suspended precariously in the black void. The atmosphere was strikingly thin, he said, like a piece of paper covering a basketball. All of human existence rested behind a diaphanous veil. You realize that all of humankind is on that little layer on the surface of that rock, he said. You realize how close we are to potential extinction from the vacuum of space. You realize that the planet is really small. You could circle it in just 90 minutes. With one or two minor exceptions, you don't see the boundaries between countries. You just see one contiguous mass of land and water. It was the identity shattering, the surrender, the acceptance, the beautiful voice, the guidance, the split, the chase, the death, the life sparks. Yet, each of those experiences were complete in themselves as well. It was all death. It was all resurrection. When the fullest-strength ecstasy subsided, both of my hands were stiff. They seemed frozen and were clutched over my chest. My heart still burned intensely, only I could now see the room and was conscious of being in my body. A vision filled me, only it didn't seem to come from the intellect. It was my heart area and an invisible empty bowl or a similar vessel was inside it. For whatever I was, that bowl space been filled up by something incredible.

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