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"A revelation of insight into the foundations of human suffering & transcendence. It not only lays out essential steps for inner freedom and joy but illuminates the way to true human potential." Paul Rademacher, author: A Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Friday, May 15, 2020

The Big Picture


It’s been about seven weeks since we woke up to our new reality. Distancing. Isolation. Self-quarantine. Thoughts of contagion. Thoughts of worry, anger, fear, rage, desperation, and loneliness. Impatience with our particular circumstances – whatever they might be. Cabin fever. Masks, gloves, sanitizing lotion, Lysol, and bleach. Distress, pain, and despair. And back we go to fear and anger.

We connect via Zoom, Skype, Facetime, Google Hangouts, Whatsapp, and so many more. We remember people we have not spoken to in years. We feel warmth in our hearts for those whose calls we may have just recently ignored for lack of time in order – or so we told ourselves - to do something more important. And back some go to fear and anger.

Global inequality is at an extreme, transnational corporations, Silicon Valley, and the world of hedge funds and investment banking all hold the citizens of our world prisoners in their tiny drudge-filled slots with no hope of making better lives for themselves. Materialism reigns supreme, the fashion industry, influencers, and social media keep superficiality at extreme, god-like levels, climate change runs rampant through our entire earth and atmosphere, and so few are paying attention. But now, I believe, many are sitting up in ways that go far beyond what they did before, and are doing more than simply paying lip service to the recognition that there is a need for deep and profound change.

And so – despite all of the above, and despite our distancing and isolation and quarantining, there is hope in so many of us. And not only hope, but for many there is a sense of recognition. We’re all in this together. All of humanity. We see how we are all connected, and have been connected, although just recently we might have easily denied it. This – the pandemic - is a collective issue. All the other ills I listed are collective issues as well. And the pandemic has created a pause. Therefore, many are thinking in new ways. So the pandemic is also a collective potential.

Countless organizations, groups, and individuals are talking about it. The potential lies in what we make of this so that we are able to come out the other side not only contemplating, but already having begun the process of putting in place necessary and urgent changes in the state of our world.

You may be reading this with derision sketched on your face. Changes, you ask? Really? And how do you think those changes will come about?

I don’t know. All I know is that since the beginning of the realization that this was a different problem than just about anyone alive had ever experienced before, I began asking myself what the big picture is; what the big picture was going to become, how the big picture could be understood and made sense of.

And now, after observing for more than seven weeks much of what can be observed, or that I have access to, I have seen two things, repeated over and over, that give me great hope.

The first is logistical: this is not going to be over any time soon. Oh yes, some things will go towards what people might call the old normal, and yet not truly be the old normal, because we can’t go all the way back there. We all know that until there is a solution, a vaccine, a cure, the old normal is simply not possible. Crowded offices, bars, restaurants, hotels, shopping malls, stores, public events of any kind that imply a gathering of many people, are simply not feasible for now, and not feasible for the foreseeable future. Any kind of work that involves agglomerations of staff as opposed to remote work, faces the same issue. As do business and leisure travel, group sports activities, and so much more. Thus, logistically, until a solution, a vaccine, a deterrent for continued contagion, is found, none of the above is going to happen any time soon.

That implies that we continue to distance, isolate (even if to a lesser degree than for the past couple of months), potentially self-quarantine if the situation warrants it, and simply not go back to business as usual.

The second element I have observed that gives me great hope is inextricably linked to the first, because this second element requires, I believe, more time to marinate in the human mind, heart, and spirit. Many of you will have seen the same as I have: an emerging awareness of our connectedness on levels that reach far beyond simply being members of the human global community. You will have seen how in so many ways the world has come together virtually, to connect on that human level, via events on our digital screens that have united us with so many others. Events that might be concerts, speakers with ideas that move us, spiritual leaders, singers, actors, health professionals, politicians, and so many others coming together to present us – virtually – with so much that unites us. To speak of love, gratitude, compassion. To remind us of connection. And to remind us that we simply can’t go back to business as usual.

On some of these occasions, and when I contemplate the big picture concept that has so fascinated me since the outbreak of this pause in our lives, I have caught myself thinking: it can’t end yet. It’s too soon. We haven’t had enough time yet to see where we should be … where we could be going, and so, of course, when I read the cautionary statements that we need more time to resolve the virus, and that things will not be as before for quite some months, perhaps even years, a part of me almost rejoices.   

If we were able to resolve it all today or in a few weeks, we would go back to business as usual. Nothing would really have changed beyond the hundreds of thousands of dead (or millions), the lost jobs, businesses, and ruined finances of so many, the health of yet others who survived, but whose physical well-being has suffered a great decline due to the fact that they were infected. Those changes are monumental, life-changing, harrowing, and heart-breaking. But if we go back to business as usual, and simply try to move on from there, then I have to ask: but what was it all for? To create such devastation and to not learn from it; to not begin to fashion a new tomorrow precisely because of it?

So I welcome the time we are asked to be patient. I welcome the fact that we cannot – yet - get our lives back on track. I welcome the fact that we will continue to have time to contemplate what this might all mean. Because by continuing to come together as connected humanity, as intermingled molecules, and by realizing that we are indeed all one, we may find, by the time a solution for the virus is created, that there is a new way forward, and that we do not, after all, have to go back to business as usual, but that we will find ourselves co-creating a very new and better world. I hope to see you there.


NOTE: This is my May 2020 Newsletter. If you wish to subscribe in order to receive the monthly articles, please sign up at the top left of this page

***************


VIDEO COURSES IN ENGLISH


See the preview (click the title below) to my online video course:




Now Available

"Fatherless Women & Motherless Men"


***************

See the preview (click on the title below) to my online video course:



Now Available

"Freedom From the Torture of Your Thoughts"

**************************************************

See the preview (click on the title below) to my online video course  





  *****************************

CHARLAS EN ESPAÑOL EN YOUTUBE

Los enlaces a continuacion no sirven, dado que el canal de YouTube de Mindalia ha sido eliminado. Por tanto, las conferencia mias se pueden ver en mi propio canal de Youtube pinchando en este enlace


Vampiros energéticos: Su efecto destructivo en tu vida




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"Límites malsanos y autoestima: Tu felicidad y el amor hacia ti mismo"





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"Basta con la tortura de tus pensamientos"



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"Soluciones para personas emocionalmente inaccesibles 
y con dependencia emocional"




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Narcisismo y Psicopatía: Vivir sin Empatía




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Relación espiritual y sexo en pareja




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Elige hábitos para llevar una vida de bienestar



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Morir: Un enfoque espiritual



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Amor sano o disfuncional: ¿Cuál es la diferencia?




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BOOKS - LIBROS - BÜCHER


Also visit my book website: www.gabriellakortsch.com where you may download excerpts or read quotations from any of my books (also in Spanish & German). My latest book Emotional Unavailability & Neediness: Two Sides of the Same Coin is available globally on Amazon in print & Kindle. You can also obtain it (or any of my other books) via Barnes & Noble.


Books by Dr. Gabriella Kortsch (English). Available globally in paperback or Kindle e-book versions


Bücher von Dr. Gabriella Kortsch (Deutsch) ... JETZT bei Amazon (Taschenbuch oder E-Book) erhältlich 
DEINE SEELE UND DU
  

Angefangen mit Rewiring the Soul - auf Deutsch: Deine Seele und Du, jetzt weltweit erhältlich als Taschenbuch oder Kindle E-Book (Blog hier), werden auch meine anderen Bücher in Zukunft auf Deutsch bei Amazon erhältlich sein.

Libros por Gabriella Kortsch (español) ... ahora en todo el mundo en Amazon en versión bolsillo y Kindle



Note: Also see my other other blog The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for another one of my books. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed. 

My blog posts are also featured on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest & you can find me on Instagram 

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Why Love Isn’t Always Love


Almost everyone knows the marvel of falling in love. Similarly, most of us have experienced the pain of love ending. What many of us don’t know is why love is not always love, even when the emotions of falling in love, or the pain of losing love are clearly very strong.

Let’s examine some of the ways in which we fall in love:
  • The chemistry between you and other person is so unusually strong that you (or both of you) believe it means you are in love
  • The adrenaline and excitement that surges when you are with the other is so strong that you are convinced it means you are in love
  • The need you feel for the other person is so strong that you believe it is a clear indication that this is love … else why would you feel such need?
  • The desire you feel to spend all your free time with the other, and not with friends and family, signifies – or so you believe – that this is love
  • The fact that you are unable to stop thinking about the other most of your waking hours, is a strong indication – or so you believe - that this is love
  • The near instant connection … almost on a soul level … that you feel with the other person very soon after meeting is so strong that you believe it signifies that this is love
  • The fact that the love the other shows you, and that you see reflected in their eyes, makes you feel so good, that you are convinced this is love, especially because you don’t feel that way when you are not together.
  • The fact that you are able to clearly see the qualities of your new partner – that he/she is not yet capable of seeing – qualities that you are convinced will surface, once your partner has realized how much you love him/her, and this love outpouring from you is so strong, that he/she will be able to change in order to allow said qualities to surface … makes you believe that this is true love
Now let’s examine how we might define an ideal state of love:
  • Ideally, loving another means you don’t love the other because you need him/her, because you have already learned to fulfill your own needs
  • Ideally, loving another means you are able to complement each other, not need each other, because you both bring full and rich lives to the table at the beginning of the relationship
  • Ideally, loving another means you love within the parameters of a rich and full life that you had before you met the other, and that you continue to nurture, despite the relationship with the one you love
  • Ideally, loving another means you love yourself first – not in a selfish way – but in the way you would take care of yourself first on board an aircraft should the air pressure drop, and thus you put your own oxygen mask on first in order to be able to be there for others. Clearly, this is not egotism, but an understanding that if you are taking good care of yourself, you are capable of offering so much to others
  • Similarly, loving yourself first, means a trespassing of boundaries is not tolerated
  • Ideally, loving another means you have learned how to love yourself, and thus do not need the other’s love to make you feel good about yourself. Rather, you give each other love freely, and revel in it, but feel good about yourself either way.
You will have seen the differences between the examples of ways in which we fall in love and the comments about an ideal state of love. Of course we fall in love in other ways as well, but the examples I have cited, rarely, if ever, give the end result we might hope for. In those situations, eventually what you thought was love often devolves into something dysfunctional and even toxic. There are a number of reasons for this. When we fall in love (or believe we are in love) due to needs that we believe the other will fulfill, a red flag is unfurling about what we have not yet learned how to do ourselves. This will create issues very quickly, when – for whatever reasons - the other balks at filling your needs. When we fall in love due to a strong desire to spend all our time with the other, another red flag unfurls regarding such a desire, such an obsession. A life that we have not filled with meaning, purpose, and content, and that we wish to fill with meaning and content through another, telling ourselves this means it is love, will surely cause the other to feel suffocated in short shrift, and sooner or later causes them to leave us to our own devices. The profound void caused by this abandonment by the beloved – fueled by your own lack of having learned to give your life meaning and purpose – is one of the most painful situations to be experienced in this kind of love. Another case in point is falling in love and having a vision of the other through rose-colored glasses. Such a vision typically has little to do with reality, and much more to do with our own as yet undeveloped inner qualities. Thus yet another red flag makes its appearance and shows us – if we have eyes to see it – that rather than yearning for said qualities in the other, we need to develop them ourselves.

So – what can be done? First, recognize the differences between real love – ideal love – and the love you think you feel due to some kind of need of lack of self-fulfilment. Second, and this is the more important part of the solution – begin to work on yourself. Begin to grow into that person that could attract the more ideal kind of love into your life. Begin to evolve, and grow into what we could call an emotionally mature person. This involves learning how to love the self and becoming conscious and aware at all times.

Also see:


***************


VIDEO COURSES IN ENGLISH


See the preview (click the title below) to my online video course:




Now Available

"Fatherless Women & Motherless Men"

Click HERE


***************

See the preview (click on the title below) to my online video course:



Now Available

"Freedom From the Torture of Your Thoughts"

Click HERE

**************************************************

See the preview (click on the title below) to my online video course  





  *****************************

CHARLAS EN ESPAÑOL EN YOUTUBE


Vampiros energéticos: Su efecto destructivo en tu vida



En YouTube aquí


****************************


BOOKS - LIBROS - BÜCHER


Also visit my book website: www.gabriellakortsch.com where you may download excerpts or read quotations from any of my books (also in Spanish & German). My latest book Emotional Unavailability & Neediness: Two Sides of the Same Coin is available globally on Amazon in print & Kindle. You can also obtain it (or any of my other books) via Barnes & Noble.


Books by Dr. Gabriella Kortsch (English). Available globally in paperback or Kindle e-book versions


Bücher von Dr. Gabriella Kortsch (Deutsch) ... JETZT bei Amazon (Taschenbuch oder E-Book) erhältlich 
DEINE SEELE UND DU
  

Angefangen mit Rewiring the Soul - auf Deutsch: Deine Seele und Du, jetzt weltweit erhältlich als Taschenbuch oder Kindle E-Book (Blog hier), werden auch meine anderen Bücher in Zukunft auf Deutsch bei Amazon erhältlich sein.

Libros por Gabriella Kortsch (español) ... ahora en todo el mundo en Amazon en versión bolsillo y Kindle



Note: Also see my other other blog The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for another one of my books. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed. 

My blog posts are also featured on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest & you can find me on Instagram 

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

The Consequences of Not Loving the Self


** Note: this is a brief excerpt from Chapter 6 of my book “The Power of Your Heart: Loving the Self”

It's a general rule that no one becomes aware of the consequences of not loving the self until he is well down the road of not doing so. When realization dawns, or in a session with a therapist, it becomes obvious that poor self-image, lack of good care for the self, and spending most of one's waking moments in a fog of blindness, or lack of awareness, form part of it. Further, having unhealthy needs that substitute so much, yet that another individual, more psychologically, emotionally, and spiritually fit, would have long begun fulfilling for him or herself, as opposed to succumbing to substances, gambling and so much else, also form part of those consequences of not loving the self. Finally, serving a master called you should are all merely indications of the heavy price that is paid for not loving the self. It can always be undone, but as with most habits and ways of living one's life, the more deeply ingrained these habits and beliefs are, the more diligently one has to work in order to eliminate them.

Poor Self-Image

We don't love the self because we have a poor self-image, but conversely, we have a poor self-image because we don't love the self. Where does the poor self-image come from, bearing in mind that most of those who suffer from it, acquired this self-image that leaves so very much to be desired, long before they may have ever heard of the concept of loving the self?

One obvious place to start is by recognizing that we compare ourselves to others. When we're in the sandbox we notice that Johnny has a bigger bulldozer. Later, we notice that Mike learned how to spell very quickly and that Jennifer always seems to know the answers to the questions the teacher asks. The fact that I can draw animals to perfection seems to pale in the light of all these other amazing, coveted, and admired intellectual achievements of my fellow first and second-graders. As we fast forward to another point in the development of our growing poor self-image, we find that Rachel's parents have a maid and spend their winter vacation in the Bahamas, while in our family we take a sled out to the hills surrounding town and consider ourselves fortunate to be able to slide down in that brilliant and packed snow. We don't pay so much attention to the fact (or perhaps we're less aware of it) that Rachel's mother drinks too much, but by now our poor self-image extends outwards to our parents, who in some fashion don't seem to measure up. Lest you accuse me of making everyone a snob or an aspiring snob, let me remind you that these are the continual messages we receive via mass media, social media, billboards, television shows, and just about everywhere you turn. We receive them when we're toddlers and we start watching cartoons on TV, and we continue to receive them as we sit in an old people's home in a wheelchair. Our society has made the message ubiquitous and until someone (you and I) sits up and takes notice and does something to change it (global, monumental and all-encompassing, or small and grass-roots: any kind of change will do, as long as it grows), nothing will change: nothing at all. So the insidiousness of this message of comparison - where I generally come out losing, because I'll always be comparing what I am or what I have, to what I don't yet have or have not yet achieved, or perhaps will never have and will never achieve, because now it is too late - the insidiousness of this message leads to many negative outcomes, only one of which is poor self-image.

And just to reiterate: a poor self-image has such fertile soil upon which it is able to flourish because as long as we are led to believe - and continue to believe - that what gives us high self esteem must come from the outside, from external sources, we will never understand the colossal rift between such a belief and the fact that true self esteem must be born, in fact, from the inside. It must come from the individual who gestates it within, and cannot be gained - can never be gained in any real and lasting way - from outside sources, because self-esteem gained in that fashion will never be true and will never have the ability to reliably endure.

Poor Care

Think about how you treat some of your possessions. How about that Jaguar in your garage? How are you treating it? Oh, you don't have one? Well then, how about your Rolex? I bet you take good care of that. Don't have that either? The Armani suit? The Gucci bag? The Ferragamo gown? The Vuitton briefcase?

Whether you own any of these items or not, I imagine that if you did, you would take very good care of them - treat them well, in other words. So if you take such good care of your special possessions, why don't you take the same kind of good care of yourself? 

We place great value on some of the objects that populate our lives, even if they are not as costly as the ones indicated. Perhaps you are a book lover, and cherish each of those volumes in your library. Perhaps you play the piano and the one standing in your living room is lovingly tuned on a regular basis. Perhaps you play golf and you clean and polish those irons each time you play 18 holes. You get my point. What is it about us that we do not tend to cherish ourselves?

One thing is how we do or do not love ourselves, but quite another thing is how we treat ourselves. This involves the care we give our bodies (quality of food, air, exercise, relaxation, and rest, quality of the company we keep, and what we feed ourselves with our eyes, our brain; i.e., what do we watch, what do we read, what sort of conversations do we have), as well as the care we take in speaking to ourselves. Call this 'how we nurture' ourselves.

Imagine you are out on the golf course and came in way over par. What words do you sling into yourself, as you berate yourself for the idiot you were for not being able to play better? Would you speak like that to your young son or daughter whom you are teaching how to play? Would you not - instead - encourage him or her to try again, saying that next time they have a good chance of doing it a whole lot better? Would you not speak words of positive and proactive support, in order to ensure that they would indeed try those shots again on the most constructive and helpful note possible?

Imagine you have just tried a new recipe and somehow it did not result in quite the mouth-watering gourmet dish you expected. Are you angry at your lack of culinary expertise? Do you insult yourself for being less than perfect? Or do you have an internal conversation that encourages you to try it in another way, or to consult with someone who has greater knowledge than you about the subject, recognizing that this is the way one learns, by trial and error and by asking questions of the experts.
What are your mistakes and failures, but attempts at doing something that has not yet quite become a successful part of your repertoire?  How did you learn how to drive? Were you perfect from the start? 

How, for that matter, did you learn how to walk? I love using this example with my clients. We've all learned how to walk, even though we may not remember it, and many of us either have children that we have observed learning how to walk, or we know children of other people that we have observed in that same process. What happens? Doesn't the burgeoning walker get up from a crawling position by holding on to furniture or the legs, skirt, or trousers of a conveniently placed adult and take a few steps? Doesn't that child then totter forwards, with a big grin on its face in view of this new world he is discovering? And doesn't he then almost always fall? What happens then? Does he make faces at himself, and shake his fist, and shout (assuming he was not hurt in the fall)? No. The child simply lifts himself up again, and tries again, supremely convinced that this time it will work. And if it still does not, the scene is repeated. And repeated and repeated again. Not once does the child think I'm so bad at this, I guess I had just better leave it, because I will never succeed. I am such a failure. And what does the adult that is observing the child do? The moment the child falls, he shouts at him, telling him how stupid he is for not knowing how to walk yet. How on earth could he not have done it perfectly the first time? Don't you see what an idiot you are, he continues to berate the child? Of course not. The loving or caring adult opens his arms to the child, encouraging him to get back up on his feet, claps, even if he fell, simply for having tried, and encourages him to try it again, showing him how much he, the adult, believes in the capacity of the child to master this process, and how much he loves the child.

This is love. This is constructive encouragement. This is bringing out the best in another. And this is how we must treat and care for our most valuable asset - ourselves. Caring for the self in loving ways is simply a corollary of loving the self. Encouraging the self, believing in the self, approving of the self - even in cases of numerous bungled attempts - and also admiring the self for all of these attempts, all forms part and parcel of loving the self.

Being Lost in the Fog of Blindness

Being blind has much to do with not living on a conscious and aware level. Achieving a state of such awareness has very little to do with intelligence and demographics, and much more to do with having had the good fortune to either hear someone speak about the importance of self-reflection and awareness, or to read about it, and then to internalize the concepts, and to then practice over and over again, until awareness becomes automatic and second nature, so that not being aware is noticed immediately simply because it tends to rob one of much of your inner well-being. In many instances individuals come to such a state of awareness after much pain and distress in their lives, after having hit, so to speak, rock bottom in some way, whether through abuse, loss, illness, abandonment, grief, depression, and a myriad number of other ills to which we - the human race - are susceptible. In those instances, such people pull themselves out of the quagmire, and one of the results is often a high degree of awareness about themselves and the human condition.

To continue reading this chapter, please refer to my book The Power of the Heart: Loving the Self, available in print or Kindle format on global Amazon sites, as well with as other reputable online booksellers

             

***************


VIDEO COURSES IN ENGLISH


See the preview (click the title below) to my online video course:




Now Available

"Fatherless Women & Motherless Men"

Click HERE


***************

See the preview (click on the title below) to my online video course:



Now Available

"Freedom From the Torture of Your Thoughts"

Click HERE

**************************************************

See the preview (click on the title below) to my online video course  





  *****************************

CHARLAS EN ESPAÑOL EN YOUTUBE


Vampiros energéticos: Su efecto destructivo en tu vida



En YouTube aquí


****************************


BOOKS - LIBROS - BÜCHER


Also visit my book website: www.gabriellakortsch.com where you may download excerpts or read quotations from any of my books (also in Spanish & German). My latest book Emotional Unavailability & Neediness: Two Sides of the Same Coin is available globally on Amazon in print & Kindle. You can also obtain it (or any of my other books) via Barnes & Noble.


Books by Dr. Gabriella Kortsch (English). Available globally in paperback or Kindle e-book versions


Bücher von Dr. Gabriella Kortsch (Deutsch) ... JETZT bei Amazon (Taschenbuch oder E-Book) erhältlich 
DEINE SEELE UND DU
  

Angefangen mit Rewiring the Soul - auf Deutsch: Deine Seele und Du, jetzt weltweit erhältlich als Taschenbuch oder Kindle E-Book (Blog hier), werden auch meine anderen Bücher in Zukunft auf Deutsch bei Amazon erhältlich sein.

Libros por Gabriella Kortsch (español) ... ahora en todo el mundo en Amazon en versión bolsillo y Kindle



Note: Also see my other other blog The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for another one of my books. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed. 

My blog posts are also featured on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest & you can find me on Instagram