Psychology + Zen = Philosophy and methods to relieve suffering and reveal happiness.

Psychology:  We project onto others what we reject in ourselves.  Some call it a Shadow.  Healing comes from making the unconscious conscious, taking responsibility for our projections, integrating what is split off as our own thing. 

Zen:  There is no separate self.  When we can be at one with every aspect, then we belong everywhere and we reject no one.  

We heal the world by becoming intimate with our whole selves.   


Entries in Psychology (5)

Tuesday
Apr032018

Yanyang's Thing: Ode to Sangha

“Trust the process,” said my new romance, as everything converged.

The spectacular and ridiculous ritual known as Shuso Hossen became the focus that yanked my fragments together last month. Fear was a constant companion but the terror was wildest when I imagined Dharma Combat, the challenge to “Dragons and Elephants” in the Dharma Hall to confront me, to demand answers to potent life questions. Having watched a few of these, each time amazed at the deft handling of such deep inquiry, I was certain that I could never measure up.

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Thursday
Oct022014

Demons and Death.  @clown

It's not all fun and games.  That ridiculous clown up there making us laugh has an inner life too, and sometimes it hurts.  In a profound and quite enjoyable workshop with master clown René Bazinet, the topic of demons popped up.  Rewarded for their failures, applauded for their most embarrassing moments, clowns are reinforced for roughly the opposite of what is normal behavior. For those who lap up attention and approval (are there really performers who don't?), such conditions can produce some mighty twisted stuff.  Amy G, photo by Ian DarsonSo in performances that invite intimacy and truth, we are sure to see clown innards

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Tuesday
Sep232014

Purpose and Politics

My Honeymoon in Chernobyl, photo by Ian DarsonDo clowns have a purpose?  Those of you who are old enough may understand what happens as you begin to glimpse mortality.On occasion at least, the inclination to cling to this narrow self drops away and we begin to consider what we transmit to the ever-changing world in which we have such a teeny cameo.  Whether or not we plan it, we do transmit, and so it is with clowns, but some use the platform to show us something important.

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Tuesday
Sep162014

Truth! What is it?

Clockwise from Left: La Cita (photo by Melibea Garavito), Giovanni (photo by Craig Behenna), Red Bastard (photo by Justin Bernhaut), Almost Definitely (photo by Julianna Rusakiewicz)
"It's not as big as I thought," observed the clown after he stripped.  This was the second time in one weekend I was treated to a naked penis on stage (no, I will not tell you which performances; it's a surprise).  What better way to reveal powerlessness beneath bravado?  It's a theme I've seen again and again in the NY Clown Theatre Festival,

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Thursday
Sep112014

For the Love of Clowns

Love and War.  What else is there?  Ok, there are dishes to do, so we can stop and think about love, or war, or the love of war, or the war of love.  Freud famously obsessed about sex and aggression, even when all those other stressed-out Victorians tried not to notice.  Civilization depends on good manners, so you can be sure that the clown, who treads where ordinary humans are too polite to go, will usually be mucking around in love or war, or both together.  In my last post, I extolled the virtues of "Fuck You!" in freeing the clown to play.  But...Love.  Love is what powers the clown.  Love is why the clown meets the audience, well mostly, anyway.

Poofy du VeyIn the marvelous Burden of Poof, the shimmeringly vulnerable Poofy du Vey expresses her struggle with her longing for love.  As she goes into the audience to find helpers, we can see she is both terrified and compelled to connect.  Don't we often make neat little systems to contain screamingly undefinable important matters?  Poofy makes a touching to-do list, containing perfectly normal tasks, and,

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