Musings on identity and self…

I often say about the voice I use in my work that I’m speaking as an empowered patient (rather than the professional I also am), but the fact is I’m speaking as a vulnerable human being — that which every seven billion of us are if we allow ourselves to be honest. We must rid our imaginations of artificial hierarchies.

In any case, I don’t (for the most part) do *patient* anymore…more than one near death experience at the hands of western medicine has largely cured me of that. I consult and do trades with friends (people I partner with in equality. Some of them have professional training) and do my own thing now…building healing community is necessary in this world… (and I won’t say never again on this topic, but going to most western medical practitioners who don’t know me and how I’ve been injured is no longer a safe option. There may come a time when the high risk involved in doing such would be necessary, though I will do my best to avoid such a moment. I wish it wasn’t this way. It is the reasonable outcome given what has happened in the context of my life. It is not a universal principle nor should it be. It is what is right for me at this time. I am not advocating avoiding standard medical care for those for whom it’s appropriate. I by no means wish what brought me to this place on anyone.)

I am only human. And so are you.

***

Is it that our truth is not being heard or that we cannot hear theirs?

What if we could really hear everyone. I mean really get the context of their lives so that we could understand how they came to what it is they’re doing/saying/being? No one lives in a vacuum. Everyone has a life that makes sense within the context of all that they are.

Truth is always paradoxical.

***

How does one resurrect oneself with no attachment to identity? That I might take all the hats off…and then only wear them lightly when completely necessary….

My identity can be fluid and non-attached to words that want to define the condition I find myself in this moment. Sometimes I might use different words to communicate similar things because the context of my life and understanding is always changing along with who I’m talking to…using different  frameworks in different contexts aids communication happening. Flexibility is flow. Flexibility is resilience.

***

there is only a relational self

from The self-illusion:

As Robert Thurman explains, it is not that we have no self but that self’s nature is relational. There is no self which exists outside the set of relationships within which it forms a complex, dynamic, ever-changing node.

**Identity imposed from the outside, always says more about those who are applying the identity than those upon whom the identity is being applied. – Paul Woodward**   (think “mentally ill” for the purposes of this site, and then all the other derogatory names or labels –racial and sexual identity slurs for example — that people impose on *others* in this society…)

 

For a multitude of ideas about how to create a life filled with safe alternatives to psychiatric drugs visit the drop-down menus at the top of this page or scroll down the homepage for more recent postings. 

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About Monica Cassani

Author/Editor Beyond Meds: Everything Matters