Saturday, January 11, 2014

proximal separations...

"Infants whose caregivers were too stressed, for whatever reason, to give them the necessary attunement contact will grow up with a chronic tendency to feel alone with their emotions, to have a sense - rightly or wrongly - that no one can share how they feel, that no one can 'understand.' 

"In proximate separations the parents are physically present but emotionally absent.... Experiences of proximate separation become part of the person's psychological programming: people 'trained' in this way in childhood are likely to choose adult relationships that re-enact repeated proximal separation dynamics.

"In the parent-child interaction is established the child's sense of the world: whether this is a world of love and acceptance, a world of neglectful indifference in which one must root and scratch to have one's needs satisfied or, worse, a world of hostility where one must forever maintain an anxious hyper vigilance. Future relationships will have as their templates nerve circuits laid down in our relationships with our earliest caregivers. We will understand ourselves as we have felt understood, love ourselves as we perceived being loved on the deepest unconscious levels, care for ourselves with as much compassion as, at our core, we perceived as young children." 

(Gabor Mate MD)

While I appreciate the depiction of early programming, being written in such code can be used as a gift, a jumping off point for developing the self mastery of restraint around such physiologic and psychological echoes of old worlds. The only way to throw off the old in the present moment is to throw off the compulsion of reacting according to the impulses of our design rather than the bodhicitta intention of tenderhearted lovingkindness...

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