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06 September 2007 @ 08:36 am
Tao of the Day - Unhooking.  
I mean, not only has something, evoked a response in me but it's going to be difficult for me to let go.
Anger is like that for sure.
Prejudice is like that.
Critical mindedness is like that.
You don't want to let go.
There's something delicious about finding fault with something.
And that can be including finding fault with one's self, you know?
So that's what I mean by hooked.
You're sort of it because of the image of a fish and the hook and it has this juicy worm on it and you know the consequences aren't going to be good.
But you cannot resist.
It's addiction.
And one of the main things we're addicted to is escalating aggression.
- Pema Chödrön, Bill Moyers' Faith & Reason

What hooks you?

Some things that hook me and start various downward, sideways and other haphazard head noisy spirals into the mighty land of Angst and Anger and even the ensnarement of a certain kind of unhealthy Ecstasy...

Being accused of something I didn't do.

Unspoken expectations.

An undirected public accusation, rant, etc. that people can easily misinterpret as being targeted directly at them. (i.e. "People need to stop wearing orange shoes" vs. "Kim, your orange plaid shoes make me motion sick. Can you stop wearing them when you come to my house?")

Second guessing my reactions to people when emotions from past abuse also arise from their actions.

People who insist their way is the only right way when there are many ways to accomplish a thing.

Self-righteous fashionista snarkiness.

Kicking the underdog while they're down.

Someone mean/untouchable/emotionally unavailable/etc. doing something kind or expressing a kind emotion.

The expectation of forgiveness without an apology.

Being asked repeatedly to give by someone who does not give in return.

Anyone feeling or insisting I'm obligated to them in a way I have not committed to.


Racism. Homophobia. Religious intolerance. Let-them-eat-cake-ism. Lording education over the uneducated or education-challenged. Tolerance disparities, tolerance hypocrisies.


Self-blame. Self-responsibility. Self-awareness. Self-consciousness.

Manipulation. Even shallow Hollywood tear jerker emotional manipulation.

Step 1 is recognizing that these things hook me.
Step 2 is not engaging in that escalation of emotions by obsessing about them, over-reacting, etc. I've had a little bit of success with Step 2 recently, but still have infinite room to practice, improve, breathe without insta-speak...

Step 2 isn't about making the whole world not do these things. As Pema says:

But, you know, if you're trying to avoid being triggered, I read something recently where someone said that's like becoming a celibate nun like me or monk and then trying to get rid of all the sexually attractive people in the world in order to keep your vows. You know, it just doesn't work. You have to work on your side of it, you know?
- Pema Chödrön, Bill Moyers' Faith & Reason

We still bite the hook, we still get towed under. And we can still, I say clobber people with our peace signs, you know. So, it really doesn't matter what religion we are. We can be a fundamentalist, or a non violent, non aggressive propagator of love in the world, and fellowship of humanity.
- Pema Chödrön, Bill Moyers' Faith & Reason

You can see it in other people. When you're talking to them you can see that they've just been hooked. Their eyes kind of glaze over or whatever. And if it just stayed there it wouldn't be a problem. But then you just think about it, and think about it, and think about it. And it's like a chain reaction. So let's say that the Shenpa, or the charge, or the hook quality is very subtle. And then the charge gets stronger and stronger and stronger. Until you're blind, and you're able to actually harm another human being, or start a hate campaign. So it's a chain reaction. And you can actually, if you come to your senses anywhere in the chain reaction you can interrupt it. But it gets harder and harder 'cause you become more on automatic pilot. And it's like an undertow. It's very seductive.
- Pema Chödrön, Bill Moyers' Faith & Reason
yvetteserpentmoon on September 6th, 2007 10:04 pm (UTC)

-Employer calling me on my day off to ask why I am not at work.- everytime I have a day off!!!!!!!!! It never stops!! aarrgg!!!!!1!!!!!!!!!!

-Being manipulated or lied to.

-Having to defend myself for doing normal things.