STATE OF THE UNION

She Who Speaks to Congress

She walks into the halls of Congress …
looking straight ahead …
right down the aisle to the podium high above the legislators’ seats.
The same podium at which the President will soon stand.

She stands at the podium …
grounded in herself …
grounded in Truth …
grounded in Love.
She takes the time to look in the eyes
of every single senator and every single congressional representative.

She begins …
Senators, Representatives, leaders of our country …
Wake up!
The state of our union is not good.

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No, don’t turn away.
No, don’t shake your head.
Don’t close your eyes and go to sleep again.
Don’t go deaf.
No, don’t go numb.
No, don’t boo me for saying the truth.

There’s lots of real truth to be said and this is the perfect time.
Not only are you all gathered here together, but …
so are all the media hosts gathered, in a sense, watching us.
So also are the citizens of our country.
And in addition, both the leaders and the citizens of countries all over our world.

All waiting for real truth to be spoken.

The state of the union is not good.
We all have played a part.
You, the leaders, right out in the open for everyone to see.

People are acting out.
You, the leaders, are acting out.
Some of you, not just the man at the top,
are acting out the part of the one who flaunts:
I can do whatever I want,
have whatever I want,
get away with anything I want, and not be caught.
I can do it in hiding or even in the light of day, and not be caught.
And if I happen to be caught, I can still get away with it.
Some will admire me.
Some will try to imitate me …
ripping off permission to do what they’ve always wanted to do.
Some will make excuses for me.
Some will be afraid of me.

Yes, and some of those who fear you will run away –
physically, in their minds, from their hearts.
Some will numb themselves – on all levels of their being.
And some will be frozen with fear …
by what you are acting out,
by the scenario that is being acted out.

Some are acting out the part of the one who flaunts.
And … some are acting out the part of the one who:
Tries like hell to catch you;
tries like the devil to stop you.
Tries to gather others to help in the “dangerous” venture.

Some think those of you who get away with anything are the good guys.
Many think those who try like the devil to stop you are the good guys.
Each of you thinks you’re the good guys and the others are the bad guys.
The truth is:  None of you is right!

None of you is right!
You are all caught …
caught up in a maze …
a vicious cycle in which you’re acting out
yet again
the same scenario played in your families
when you were children long ago.

In your life as a child there was
a version of what’s going on today.
There was someone who thought they could get away with anything;
perhaps someone who ran away,
someone who numbed themselves,
and someone who was frozen with fear.
There was also someone who tried like the devil to stop the one
who thought they could get away with anything.

What did he or she think they could get away with?
There were limitless possibilities.
Among them ….
drinking, drugging, gambling;
cheating, stealing;
yelling, beating, sexually abusing;
lying, manipulating, brainwashing, gaslighting,
grabbing all the power.

What did he or she think they could get away with?
In essence, passing on in your family
the trauma they experienced growing up in theirs …
all in an attempt to defend themselves against the pain
of their trauma.

But if you pass on your trauma without doing the inner work to heal it …
you not only pass it on to your family,
you also pass it on to your society and to the world society.

And what about all the spouses, family members, and children
who didn’t believe they could ever stop you, the “flaunter”?
Without doing their inner healing work …
they pass down the trauma of their hopelessness to their families and their society.

And …. what about all the family members, particularly the children,
who believed and hanged onto the hope that they could one day stop you
from all that you’ve been trying to get away with?
Attempting to stop you only in the outer world …
failing to do their own inner healing work …
they, too, pass down their trauma to generations of families to come
and generations of society to come.

You are the leaders of our country –
and mirrors of leaders in countries all over the world –
and mirrors of citizens in countries all over the world!
Get a grip!
Whatever “role” you are playing in this societal scenario
is merely a re-creation of the scenario of your childhood
(and generations before).

Whatever you do in the outer world to
keep flaunting,
keep running in hopelessness,
keep trying like the devil to stop this …
will only escalate it further if …
you don’t heal it on the inside,
if you don’t heal it from the inside out.

You are the leaders!
Get a grip!
I can see through your act, your ploy, your defenses.
I can see through your big, adult bodies …
to the little children within you who are driving this mess,
escalating it from whatever your “role” in the re-enactment.

There is a television commercial for Haribo gummy bears.*
In it, the brilliant creators of the commercial have members of
a board of directors eating the gummy bears and talking like children.
This is what I see and hear when I witness you, our leaders,
creating havoc in our government, our country, and our world.

Just like children cannot see that their parents are
re-enacting what happened to them when they were children …
unless we can see our own part in the trauma that is being
re-created and repeated amongst us today,
and unless we do our own work to heal it within ourselves,
we won’t be able to see and hear you, our leaders,
acting like the children you are inside.

You are the leaders.
Get a grip!
For once, act like leaders!
For once, be truly good role models!
Don’t tell me you are telling the truth …
while refusing to do the healing deep within that would bring real truth.
Don’t tell me you love your country …
while refusing to heal the experience of trauma and
your defenses against the trauma,
all of which close your heart to love.

Yes, you went through trauma.
We all have in one way or another.
Yes, I have compassion for your trauma.
Yes, I would gladly help you heal from your trauma.
But I still hold you accountable for the trauma you continue to create …
in an attempt to hold your past trauma at bay.

You are the leaders.
For once, for the sake of us all, act like leaders!
Look for and find the original childhood role you are acting out in this destructive scenario.
Get help healing the trauma experienced by the child you were long ago.
Get help healing the trauma that still lives within you,
and that you experience over and over beneath your awareness.
Get the help to do real inner healing so that you stop creating trauma in our world in order to not feel the trauma from your past.

Until you do this, senators and congresspeople …
you are not my leaders!
you are not my role models!
And honestly, you are not really our leaders or role models.
Neither are the citizens who are following your lead.

We need leaders and citizens, who will do their inner healing
so they have the capacity and potential
to truly help stop destructive, escalating, trauma.

We need leaders and citizens, who will do inner healing to the root –
not just seek quick fixes,
not just put on band aids so they will feel better or function.
We need leaders and citizens who will commit themselves to healing to the core and follow through on that commitment …
so the trauma perpetuated and driven by the children in adult bodies
will slow down, de-escalate, transform, and eventually end.

We need leaders and citizens who hear those traumatized children within
not only acting out destructive traumas,
not only creating trauma by defending against past trauma,
but also crying out for help to heal.
You may think this is depressing.
You may want to dismiss it and turn away.
You may want to discredit it.

The truth is …
this understanding and the possibility that follows
brings hope –
real hope.
In reality, without this, there is no real hope.

She stops speaking.
She looks every single member of Congress in the eye
and steps down from the podium.
She walks down the aisle and back out into the world,
knowing she has just been
the presence
of grounded, real love
and
of grounded, rarified truth.
Knowing what she has just given to the world is true hope.

 

* https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EAnwmmPFYgU
Also see
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=963SVFKw1Tw

© Judith Barr, 2020.

WE’RE IN A TRANCE ABOUT MONEY —

DURING THE HOLIDAYS AND EVERY DAY

 

When I was a little girl, I knew people had really distorted relationships with money.
I couldn’t have put it into those words then …
b
ut I knew it in my bones, my heart, and my soul.

It became obvious at certain times, in certain ways.
One of the most obvious was the holidays.
It was like people went berserk with their money and their gifts.
They went out of control in ways they didn’t seem to ordinarily.

As I grew up and then became a therapist,
I saw this behavior more and more, including with clients.
They would ask me to help them with their holiday spending,
and then they would fight against my help with all their might.

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Out of this was birthed my work to help people
heal their relationships with money to the root.

This year as I witness people going through their holiday “journeys,”
I’m seeing an additional perspective through an additional lens.

Individually, it seems that people are in a trance
they don’t even know they’re in.
A trance they don’t seem to want to have pierced
A trance they don’t seem to want to have revealed to them.

For example, a woman wants to come work on the fights she
and her partner are having about money.
They are wealthy people and have just become richer still.
They buy holiday gifts for people that most people would consider extravagant.
But they don’t see it that way.
And …
she doesn’t want to do therapy unless their insurance will pay for it.

She can’t even see the reality of her distorted relationship with
money through the example I’ve just given.
The distortion that she would pay limitless amounts of money
for things, but little or nothing for healing.
She is in such a disconnected trance!

People who aren’t wealthy have their own distorted relationships with
money …
and their own trances, as well.

The trance exists individually, in couples, in families, and …
communally, too.
Greta Thunberg named the communal/global version publicly
at the UN Climate Summit … in her own way:

“People are suffering. People are dying.
Entire ecosystems are collapsing.
We’re in the beginning of a mass extinction.
And all you can talk about is money!
And fairy tales of eternal economic growth!”

A 16-year old young woman is telling world leaders that
they are in a trance and it is causing disaster beyond what they
are willing to admit, or even know.

She poignantly tells them:
“You are still not mature enough to tell it like it is.”

I don’t know exactly what she had in mind and heart
when she said the truth of that.
I know that the roots of our relationships with money
are found in our childhoods.
In hidden places, unimaginable experiences and memories, and
are acted out in distorted ways.  These roots need to be brought
out of unmatured trance states and into grown up, here-and-now
grounded awareness for healing.

What about you?
Are you in a trance state in relationship to money?
A trance that you don’t want to know, see, pierce?
A trance state that you’re resisting healing?
A trance state that affects your personal life and the life of our world, as well? 

Are you in a trance state in relation to money?
A trance your unmatured self does not want to heal?
A trance your soul longs for you to heal?

 It’s time to wake up.
Come out of that trance.
Get the help to heal your relationship with money and its impact to the root…
It’s time to respond to your soul’s calling.

© Judith Barr, 2019.

 

TO IMPEACH OR NOT TO IMPEACH?

WHAT EXACTLY IS THE QUESTION?

I know we have to go through this. This is the consequence of not just one man, not just one party, not just one government, not just a tribal citizenry. This is the consequence of society as a whole and the members of society.

Who is this man who’s acting out his earliest traumas on our country and our world, creating trauma for all of us, and giving some a free pass to act out their earliest traumas in their own destructive ways?

Who are the members of the government who are held hostage to their own earliest traumas, their families filled with denial, lies, and secrecy, and, as a result, are held hostage to the man at the top? The father figure?

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Who are the members of the tribal citizenry who are acting and reacting to the authority in just the ways they’ve always reacted to or in the ways they’ve always wanted to react to their own authoritarian parents?

This is not simply tribalism. This is dangerous ground that is becoming more and more dangerous.  Is this the way the people of Germany were right before Germany became Nazi Germany?

George Santayana’s famous statement “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” is a mirror to our eyes, our hearts, and our souls. This is true in our individual and our collective lives.

If a child is traumatized and does not have the help to consciously remember, feel, and work through the trauma – as a child, teen, or adult – that child will continuously re-enact that early trauma in one way or another throughout life. For example, if a child is abused and represses or in some way denies that abuse, he will somehow have abuse in his life until the end. He may be drawn to people who abuse him; she may abuse others; he may abuse himself – openly or hidden within; she may collude with abuse of others, overtly or subtly.

The same thing happening from one person’s life to another’s creates a society that continuously re-enacts the early traumas of its people and the early traumas of the society as a whole.

This happens in every child’s life. It happens in the life of every society. What’s happening in the United States of America is just one current example.  But it is right out in the open for all to see … or discount, ignore, or forget, as we choose.

The history of impeachment related to Presidents of the United States includes four re-enactments: In 1868, Andrew Johnson was impeached by the House of Representatives. 106 years later, in 1974, Richard Nixon resigned, rather than risk impeachment and removal from office. 24 years later, in 1998, Bill Clinton was impeached by the House of Representatives. And today, in 2019, only 21 years after the Clinton impeachment, the House of Representatives has announced a formal impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

Just as with any re-enactment, the instances get closer together in time and escalate in severity and impact.

According to our constitution and in an effort to curtail the dangerous consequences, the impeachment process needs to take place. However … taking outer action alone will not resolve the true problem. The true problem is not the person of the President alone. He or she is simply one in a cast of many players who are acting out forgotten, denied, or ignored early traumas.

Recently, as part of her healing work, one of my clients was on her way into feelings triggered by the current situation in our country. As one step in the process, she said: “I don’t wanna feel my feelings about what’s going on in our country. I want somebody to stop it.”  She continued, “And I don’t wanna feel my feelings about what went on in my childhood. I wanted somebody to stop it.”*

What she was willing to say out loud … on her way deeper into the healing journey … is what most people are thinking and feeling, as they blame today’s situation on others while refusing to do their own healing exploration and  journey. While refusing to acknowledge their own part in today’s re-enactment. While refusing to be conscious of the connection between their individual past traumas and their current day traumas; between their individual past traumas and our collective traumas; between our collective past traumas and our current day collective traumas. And while refusing to enter or enter more deeply into their journey to heal their contribution to the national re-enactment of trauma.

As children, we were not responsible for the traumas we experienced at the hands of others and in the face of life. But as adults, we are responsible for both the traumas we keep creating and co-creating and for healing the traumas we experienced long, long ago.

What makes us think we can react to the here-and-now behaviors of our leaders by ignoring the truth, by twisting the truth, by denying the truth – current and past – and escape the consequences of our own histories and re-enactment escalation?

What makes us believe we can escape the acting out and re-enacting cycles of abuse on every level of society by hiding that truth under the guise of politics? By escalating the guise of politics as a cover for our deep inner traumas? By refusing to acknowledge to ourselves and each other, our responsibility in creating this chaos, pain, and trauma in our country and our world? And along this train of questioning … why aren’t the media and political leaders doing their own work and modeling for us to do ours?

What makes us think we are so powerful that we can simply focus on our “better angels” or only take action according to our “better angels” … and by doing so keep our “worst angels” or “demons” from having an impact? Ignoring our “demons” – meaning the whole complex of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors related to our early traumas – only gives them more power to haunt us and to create more trauma in our lives from deep beneath our conscious awareness.

What makes us think we can simply pray away the painful impact we have from our past traumas – conscious and unconscious – without having to do the conscious, purposeful, real work of healing within ourselves?

What makes us think we can let someone “move our energy” and all our trauma will simply disappear? What makes us think we can let someone “move our energy” and the consequences of our trauma will disappear … without our having to become conscious of our trauma and its consequences? Without our having to become conscious of the impact we have? Without our having to work through that trauma consciously?

What makes us think we can ignore what is going on deep within us and its impact on our lives, our country, and our world?

Do we believe we are so special we can get away with it?
Do we believe we are so entitled, we can escape it?
Have we created such impenetrable denial, that we cannot pierce it? …. yet?
Are we being deluded? seduced? brainwashed? by our family’s beliefs? by mainstream society’s beliefs, attitudes and perceptions?

Are we just plain so afraid to face ourselves … our traumas … our feelings … that we could give a damn about the consequences on our lives and those of others all over our country and world?

Or … Are we just so afraid to face our own past traumas that we need to reach out for help … for our sake and the sake of our world?

These are the real questions.
This is a mirror for us.
This is a call for us.
This is a summons of real Truth to us to see, hear, feel and take responsibility for our part of the problem and our part of the healing.
This is an urgent appeal of true Love to us to acknowledge our responsibility and repair our part.

If we don’t respond to the call, whatever the results of the impeachment inquiry and process … this chaos and trauma will continue and escalate in our lives and the life of our country and world.

If we do respond to the call, whatever the results of the impeachment inquiry and process … we will help heal, from the root, what keeps recreating trauma in our lives and the life of our country and world.

The real questions above are crucial questions for us to ask and answer.
The real questions below are just as, if not even more important.

What will you do?
Will you say ‘no’ to the call and be part of creating future trauma in order to avoid your own personal past trauma?
Or will you say ‘yes’ to the call and be part of healing your past trauma in order to help prevent your future trauma and our future communal trauma?
_____

*Shared with permission of my client.

** For further and deeper understanding, also see How Did We Get Here? Our Refusal to Know the Truth about Ourselves, Judith Barr, 2018, Mysteries of Life. Available through Amazon or www.JudithBarr.com .

*** Many thanks to those of you who are doing your inner healing work in these challenging times and as part of your way of life. I invite you to acknowledge this truth to others. If it helps you to do that, certainly pass this article on.

© Judith Barr, 2019.

CASSANDRA WEEPS ENDLESSLY, AND THEN …

She cries herself to sleep every night …
knowing what’s coming,
trying to warn people,
nobody listening,
or if they do …
nobody believing her,
nobody willing to help,
nobody willing to do their part.

She cries herself awake every morning …
Remembering the trauma with Apollo, the patriarchal god.
Apollo, who tried to seduce her with his gift of prophecy,
and then cursed her when she spit in his mouth,
refusing him as he tried to have his way with her.
Or did he spit in her mouth and then curse her,
determined to demonstrate the power he held over her?

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Either way, blaming and punishing her
or proving his power over her …
Apollo left her with the gift of prophecy to see what was coming,
but left her also with the curse: no one would believe what she saw!
No one would believe what she knew to be true!

Her father, the King of Troy, didn’t believe her.
Her family didn’t believe her.
Neither did the citizens of Troy.
She warned there were people coming to destroy them.
She warned they would sneak in without the people of Troy knowing.
She warned the citizens needed to be aware, awake, conscious,
and work purposefully to protect themselves and each other.

For centuries Cassandra has cried herself to sleep.
For centuries Cassandra has cried herself awake.
For centuries Cassandra has seen.
For centuries Cassandra has known.
For centuries Cassandra has warned.
For centuries Cassandra has not been believed.
For centuries Cassandra has not been helped to spread the word
and protect the village.

It’s happened over and over again.
The patriarchal trauma.
The trauma it caused Cassandra.
The trauma it caused the village.
And then the trauma itself – untended, unhealed –
creating and recreating more trauma.

Century after century after century …
the people avoiding their own trauma.
the village avoiding its own trauma.
person after person creating trauma for self and others, as a result.
village after village creating trauma for itself and others, as a result.

Even today, when national security bigwigs can write a book about cassandras…
they ignore or refuse to believe
Cassandra’s warnings about the traumas that create
from the inside out.
They refuse to acknowledge what she knows –
that it’s an inside job.
Even today when songs have been written about Cassandra …
those songs are the least well known, unknown by many.

Still today, hardly anybody believes Cassandra.
Still today she weeps herself to sleep and awake.

But now she has come to a crossroads.
Now she is making a change.
Now she is, with one strong, inevitable, powerful burst  of
“Enough is Enough!” …
breaking Apollo’s curse,
dissolving the blanket of disbelief,
shattering the blindness, deafness, and numbness that has resulted.

Now Cassandra breaks the curse.
Now she will be believed.
Now she and her village will not be attacked and taken.

Now our unconscious selves will not be mined from the outside.
because now we will mine our own unconscious selves,
healing trauma, and as a result, preventing the ongoing slaughter of
trauma being passed down from generation to generation.

Now we will believe Cassandra.
Now we will see what she sees, what she’s showing us.
Now we will know what she knows, what she’s telling us.
Now we will each do our own inner healing work to heal our trauma –
within and amongst us.
Individually and communally.

The curse is broken.
Apollo’s patriarchal power is shattered.
Cassandra will now be believed.
Healing is now possible.
The healing of trauma will now take place.
Hope opens our hearts again.

 

© 2019, Judith Barr

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LET ME INTRODUCE YOU TO CASSANDRA

AND HER IMPACT ON OUR WORLD

Let me introduce you to Cassandra.
She comes to us from Greek mythology and the
patriarchal world of those times.
It is said that Cassandra was the daughter of
King Priam and Queen Hecuba of Troy.

There are a number of versions of the myth. Pulling the threads together brings us this one:
Cassandra was in service as a priestess to the Greek god Apollo. Her sacred vow as a priestess included a vow to remain a virgin throughout her life. Despite this required vow of chastity, Apollo wanted Cassandra and tried to seduce her with a gift – the gift of prophecy.  Some versions of the myth say she agreed … but that would mean breaking her vow.  It seems that in the end, she refused his advances and kept her vow of chastity.

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Apollo was so enraged by her refusal, he wanted to take away his gift to her. But that was not allowed in the rules of the gods. So, he found another way to punish her for her “rebuff.”  He put a curse on her: She would be able to see what was coming, but nobody would believe her.  His intention and his curse would cause her pain, frustration, fear, despair and more. And cause great harm to those who worshipped him.

Cassandra attempted, in vain, to warn the people of Troy that the Greeks were coming to destroy their home. No one believed her. No one took protective action. Her prophecy came true.  The Greeks entered Troy’s homeland, hidden away in the Trojan Horse.  Once in the gates … destruction!

The essence of Cassandra has played a part throughout time. The one who sees what’s happening beneath the surface. The one who sees the future. The one who tries to warn. The one who is not believed.

She has played a part in every arena of life – family, spiritual, educational, business, healing, civilian, political, governmental, national, and global. People’s refusal to believe her has caused great damage to limitless beings in limitless ways.

There have been profound songs written that sing to us of Cassandra and those that reveal to us the god Apollo. Unfortunately, they have been little known. One important one among them is “The Oceans Are Calling,” by Kim Rosen and Cahie Malach.

The Greeks called you Delphys, the womb of the mother.
Apollo so feared you he sought mastery.
Your beauty and freedom he tried to imprison.
And still to this day he lays waste to your seas.

For deep in your waters he meets his own shadow,
a movement of oceans that melts sword and shield.
And naked we enter the womb of creation,
a power so vast it insists that we yield.

Another one, a song by the famous group ABBA, powerfully expresses the widespread painful impact of Apollo’s curse on Cassandra:

Sorry Cassandra I misunderstood
Now the last day is dawning
Some of us wanted but none of us would
Listen to words of warning

But on the darkest of nights
Nobody knew how to fight
And we were caught in our sleep

Sorry Cassandra I didn’t believe
You really had the power
I only saw it as dreams you would weave
Until the final hour

Now that you have been introduced to Cassandra . . . go to the next blog post – to read and listen to :

Cassandra Weeps Endlessly

And Then . . .

 

© 2019, Judith Barr

 

NO MORE TRAUMA!

UTILIZE THE TRAUMA TO HEAL THE TRAUMA …

NOT TO CREATE MORE TRAUMA

There is so much trauma in our world.
We’re having trouble facing the truth
of the causes and the consequences.
We need help to face the truth.
We need help to heal the trauma …
not just bandage it.
We need help to heal the trauma
to the roots and from the inside out.

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NO MORE IGNORANCE; NO MORE DENIAL; NO MORE DELUSION!

The leaders in our country and world are acting out their childhood traumas on their countries, on our world, on our planet.

Impeaching them, electing someone else, a revolution … none of these is going to solve the problem. The next leaders will also act out their childhood traumas on the national and global stages.

And the leaders aren’t the only ones.  We, the citizens, act out our childhood traumas in our lives, in our families, in our schools, in our businesses, in our communities, in our countries, and in our world. 

Not only that, but also … we are connected to the leaders whose traumas somehow reflect or intersect with our own. This is unconscious and ends up causing us to decide and act in ways that aren’t really free, that certainly aren’t healthy, and that are often destructive. 

And as I’ve indicated in previous blog posts, this ends up causing us to abuse our children, abuse each other, abuse ourselves, and abuse our planet … either outright and directly, hidden and secretly, or perhaps more subtly, through enabling and collusion.

This will continue until we do our own inner healing to consciously and purposefully work through our young traumas.  

Here’s a step you can take:


Until we heal from our early traumas …
we are held captive –
by our own traumas …
by our leaders’ traumas …
by the traumas we’re trying to forget and bury,
while at the same time acting them out without awareness.

Until we heal from our ancient traumas …
we consciously and unconsciously try to
keep our traumas hidden and buried.
Yet they remain alive and active within us …
like volcanos waiting to erupt.

Until we heal from our long-ago traumas …
we are held hostage –
by the traumas we are creating and re-creating
in our lives,
in the lives of our children,
in the lives of our families,
in the lives of our countries and our world.

Have the courage to wake up …

Have the courage to understand this …
Have the courage to explore and find the roots of your own trauma …
and to heal it.

Here’s another step you can take:


Be aware that you are being triggered by what’s going on in our country and world today.
There are here and now situations that need to be addressed in the here and now.

But your unhealed childhood traumas interfere with your successfully contributing to real, sustained resolution of today’s problems for the long-term.

Be aware that those triggers are rooted in your childhood traumas.
Be aware that the feelings that are triggered are connected to your childhood traumas. 

Don’t act out on those feelings
and don’t bury them.
Have the courage to safely feel the feelings
the child you once were felt in the midst of your trauma.
Know that the child you once were is still alive inside you,
driving you without your realizing it …
until you heal his or her trauma.
 

NO MORE BLINDNESS; NO MORE DEAFNESS; NO MORE NUMBNESS

Here’s still another step you can take:

 

Get the help to end your blindness to what’s going on.
Get the help to end your deafness to what’s going on.
Get the help to end your numbness to what’s going on.
What’s going on within you …
What’s coming from you …
and what’s happening on our planet.

 Climate activist Greta Thunberg has said to the adults of our planet:

Adults keep saying we owe it to the young people, to give them hope.
But I don’t want your hope. I don’t want you to be hopeful.
I want you to panic.
I want you to feel the fear I feel every day.
I want you to act. I want you to act as you would in a crisis.
I want you to act as if the house is on fire, because it is.” *

What needs to be melted is our numbness.
I have been writing, teaching, urging, and working with people for years …
to feel their panic.
If people had felt the panic from their childhood traumas,
we wouldn’t be in such danger today in so many ways …
individually, communally, and globally.

So it may seem strange to hear a depth psychotherapist who is filled with love and compassion for people in pain to say something similar to what Greta Thunburg is saying:

 I want you to feel your panic from long, long ago …
I want you to find a safe way to feel that panic from your ancient traumas
so you will stop re-creating your trauma and panic in your life and in ours …
today, tomorrow, and in our future.
That, in fact, is the deepest hope!

Find a good therapist to help you safely feel your panic and safely utilize your traumas to heal your traumas. In that way you will collaborate with us all in healing our past traumas and saying ‘no’ to creating new traumas.

This is the work I do with people, day by day by day.
If I can help you, let me know.

Thank you and Many blessings to each of you … and to our planet . . .

Judith

*‘I want you to panic’: Climate activist Greta Thunberg, 16, lays it on the line for world leaders

NOTE: To understand more about trauma and its course, read  https://judithbarr.com/2018/10/28/haunted-now-what/ from this time last year.

© Judith Barr, 2019

IF IT TAKES A VILLAGE TO RAISE A CHILD . . . PART TWO

IF IT TAKES A VILLAGE TO RAISE A CHILD … 

THEN IT TAKES A VILLAGE TO ABUSE A CHILD

PART TWO

Welcome to Part Two of this series.
Facing the truth about child abuse in our world
is not an easy task.
I honor your courage and willingness to take a deep dive
into this meaningful journey into consciousness…
into this profound journey into grounded awakening…
into this crucial journey into the healing of child abuse in our world…
into this imperative journey into healing abuse and trauma in our world.

In Part One I talked about child abuse, and how it is not caused by just one abuser,
but rather by a larger village of people playing different roles.

I spoke of many examples of child sexual abuse –
both private-not-yet-made-public
and also once-private-now-public.
I gave examples of how the sexual abuse of children requires not just one abuser,
but rather a larger village to “make and allow it to happen.”

If It Takes a Village to Raise a Child... Then It Takes a Village to Abuse a Child (part 2)
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In this part of the series, we will look at the village it takes to create child abuse on an even larger scale than before.
It might be tempting to turn away and not learn more.
But then, turning away and not learning more
is one of the ways we become part of the village that helps to abuse a child,
and even many children.

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

Leaving Neverland

In early 2019, the documentary “Leaving Neverland” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Following that, it was released on HBO in early March. It revealed the experiences of two men, ages 36 and 40, who had been groomed and then sexually abused by Michael Jackson beginning when they were 7 and 10 years old.

The two little boys, Wade and James, and their families were seduced and groomed* by Michael Jackson.  They were seduced and drawn in for the purpose of gaining their trust … so that down the road, they would trust Michael, they would be blind, deaf, and numb to what Michael was doing and to the state of their own being, and they wouldn’t dream of telling anyone what was going on with Michael.

A child is vulnerable to such seduction and grooming. If, as an adult, someone is still seduceable in the same way, it is an indication of some wounding in his/her childhood that leaves them still vulnerable and unconscious on a young level of their being.

It Takes a Village to Abuse A Child –
My Awareness in My Practice as a Healing Practitioner

As a depth psychotherapist and Midwife to the Soul, I have worked with countless adults who were abused in many ways during their childhood. Many ways, including sexual abuse.  I have helped them work with the painful experiences, the painful memories as they came, the painful consequences in their inner and outer worlds. I have been with them as they have expressed their feelings – building their capacity to feel them and let them come out safely and for the purpose of healing.  I have witnessed, heard, and felt with them as they have expressed their need for the abuse to have never happened at all … and just as much, for someone to have helped them, for someone to have stopped the abuse. In each person’s experience, no one stopped it and no one helped them.   So in this way, I know up close with people about whom I care deeply … that it took a village to abuse these children.

And knowing from experience with these people, I can also see the dynamic of “it takes a village to abuse a child” in other arenas and other forms. After watching both parts of “Leaving Neverland,” the truth of Wade’s and James’ experiences and the “it takes a village” dynamic was very clear and very resonant.

How People Out in the World Responded
to “Leaving Neverland”

Many denied the experiences revealed by Wade and James.  Michael’s family. Michael’s estate. Many of Michael’s still devoted fans. Twitter was alive with denials and attacks on these two brave men and the people who created the documentary.

While perhaps many of Michael’s staff remained silent, it seems some came forward and revealed things they had been aware of.

The families of the two children, who had allowed their boys to sleep in Michael’s room with him, finally knew what had happened and spoke of their regret, sorrow, and more.

All of these people made up the village who, in one way or other, participated in the ongoing sexual abuse of Wade and James and …. others.

And then came another shocking example of a participant. Someone who people would have perhaps never have suspected.  Barbra Streisand. “Rolling Stone,” March 23, 2019, reported:

“Speaking to The Times UK, ahead of her London concerts this summer, Streisand said she ‘absolutely’
believed the accounts of Wade Robson and James Safechuck, but added, ‘You can say ‘molested’, but
those children, as you heard say, they were thrilled to be there. They both married and they both have
children, so it didn’t kill them.’

“ ‘His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA
he has…’ Streisand said of Jackson.”

How Barbra Streisand could think, feel, and say those things is a painful mystery! What wounds does she carry within her – both those known to her and still repressed deep beneath her awareness – that could be revealed in her responses to the documentary?  What trauma of her own is still unhealed within her that she could believe her attempts at apology could carry any weight? Any resonance to truth?  And Barbra Streisand is simply one of millions – although a celebrity icon, at that! With a lot of impact. A celebrity icon like Michael Jackson was a celebrity icon.

The World Village that Abuses Our Children

After the release of “Leaving Neverland,” something came across my desk about art in different forms that had been created by people who had acted out destructively in their lives. The essence of the message was ‘don’t stop looking at or listening to a particular work of art just because the artist was destructive.’

This message took me to the lyrics of two of Michael Jackson’s most famous songs. Although I was not at all a fan of Michael Jackson in his lifetime, I had seen and heard bits and pieces of him singing these two songs from time to time on the radio or television. I had had no interest in going further.

When I recently saw the lyrics, I was so deeply affected. I saw that they so very likely described both someone who had been abused as a child and also someone who would perpetrate abuse on children, or already had been doing so.  I know “Thriller” was not written by Michael, but he did sing it, dance it, embody it, live it on stage again and again for years. And apparently, he also lived it in his life … probably his life as a child, and now it seems more certainly revealed that he lived it in his adult life with little children.  And Michael did write “Bad,” and also embodied it and likely lived it in his life.

Some lines from each …

Thriller (1982)

It’s close to midnight
Something evil’s lurking from the dark
Under the moonlight
You see a sight that almost stops your heart
You try to scream
But terror takes the sound before you make it
You start to freeze
As horror looks you right between your eyes
You’re paralyzed

‘Cause this is thriller
Thriller night
And no one’s gonna save you
From the beast about to strike


And from “Bad” (1987)

Your butt is mine
Gonna tell you right
Just show your face
In broad daylight
I’m telling you
On how I feel
Gonna hurt your mind
Don’t shoot to kill
Come on …

Well they say the sky’s the limit
And to me that’s really true
But my friend you have seen nothin’
Just wait ’til I get through

Because I’m bad, I’m bad come on …
And the whole world has to
Answer right now
Just to tell you once again
Who’s bad

Questions flooded through me! How many people had been seduced by these two songs because they reflected the listener’s own childhood wounds? How many had been drawn in by the horror of the memory of their own abuse presented outside them in a song, dance, video, performance. We often do that – what we can’t tolerate remembering or feeling from our own young experiences, we project onto, or find something in the outer world to mirror it for us. How much of Jackson’s fame and fans had been responding to this?

And how many had been drawn in by the compulsion fantasy to do to others what had been done to them, also a common response to childhood abuse? The fantasy and feelings almost always, even if repressed. The acting it out – not always, not necessarily, but often expressed in other ways … among them, watching horror shows or songs entitled “Thriller” or “Bad.”

However people were drawn in to Michael Jackson, it’s so important to explore what it was in each person that was vulnerable to being seduced … even by his songs.

I’ve wondered … If I had read the lyrics to these songs way back when, would I have realized the mirrors they were of the abuse of Michael and the abuse by Michael?  Would I have had enough experience working with people’s suffering from childhood encounters with sexual abuse in particular and any kind of abuse in general … that I would have recognized it and been able to create a way to expose it, reveal it, help people pierce their defenses against it?

I don’t know. But I do know … it’s right there in his songs and has been all along. Any one or more of us could have seen it … if we’d had the awareness, the sight, the vision, the heart, the willingness to receive and connect beneath everything else that was going on.

This is a painful example of how we all contributed to the abuse of children all over the world. This is a single painful example of how we have all been part of the village that abused the children.

Some Who Work to End the Abuse of Children

There are some in our world who get it. Who get how much child abuse and child sexual abuse goes on in our world. There are some who get the pattern of grooming that is so enmeshed with the sexual abuse itself. There are some who get the seduction in many forms – including both trusting and frightening, both seemingly gentle and violent, and all very confusing for a child.

Among those I know get it:
There is the California Protective Parents Association.

There is Oprah Winfrey: who spoke out after the release of the movie, saying that this moment is bigger than Michael Jackson; acknowledging that she did 217 shows in 25 years on sexual abuse, trying to get people to see the scourge on humanity,  the societal corruption that was being revealed once again through this movie.

There are those I have worked with who have been sexually abused, who are thankful, as I am, for the MeToo Movement, but … who are so distressed that these recent movements don’t attend to the sexual abuse that is happening to children all over our country and our world every single day.

There are a few of my colleagues who have supported and encouraged me to write about this again and again.

And there is, of course, my heart and soul and my own muse – calling to me again and again to help more and more deeply, more and more broadly, to heal child sexual abuse as one specific form, and, of course, child abuse in all its forms.

As I ended Part One of this series …

Mind you, this is a mirror to us not only of how we react to the sexual abuse of children, but also of how we react to other serious problems in our lives – in our families, in our institutions and organizations, in our countries and in our world.

Tune in soon for the next installment to learn more about the impact of the village that helps to abuse children … the impact by us and on us all over our world, every single day.

* Child grooming:  https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_grooming

Note 1: To read or listen to Part One of this series:  https://judithbarr.com/2019/05/18/it-takes-a-village-part-1/

Note 2: There are many ways you can learn about child abuse, grooming, sexual abuse, and the repetitive cycle of abuse in our world. It is, of course, a painful learning; but so very crucial.  Some of the ways that are, in addition to painful, also grounded, sensitive, and inspiring, include:

The movie, Leaving Neverland

The book, Little Girl Leaving: A Novel Based on A True Story, by Lisa Blume

The book, How Did We Get Here? Our Refusal to Know the Truth About Ourselves: Blowing the Whistle on Us – For the Trauma We’ve Experienced and the Trauma We Create, by Judith Barr

If you plan to watch the video or read Lisa Blume’s book and have been sexually abused or think you may have been, or even if you don’t think you may have been, or even if you don’t remember, please create a plan to take care of yourself before reading or viewing.  That plan would include having support people available, even to watch with you, and having a therapist you can work with, if something opens up that you need help with.

© Judith Barr, 2019.

 

IF IT TAKES A VILLAGE TO RAISE A CHILD …

THEN IT TAKES A VILLAGE TO ABUSE A CHILD

No, don’t go away. Stay.
This is important. This is crucial.
We all need to know this in order to become conscious …
in order to solve the problem.

Too many of us say we love our children, yet abuse them consciously or beneath our awareness,
in secret or right out in the open,
under the guise of some supposedly high principle or just plain willfully.

So many of us say we love our children yet abuse them . . . physically, sexually, emotionally, mentally, energetically, and spiritually.

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We may not want to know this. We may not want anyone else to know this.
We may normalize it, deny it, outright justify it.
Far too many of us say we love our children and are doing these things for their own good* … lying to others and ourselves, as we make these high-minded claims.

And the problem is not just those of us who actually abuse our children.

It’s the other parent who doesn’t protect them. It’s the other supposedly adult members of the extended family who don’t protect them. It’s the neighbors who don’t protect them.  It’s the institutions that don’t protect them. It’s the law that doesn’t protect them.

It’s those who are afraid and don’t protect our children.
It’s those who were abused themselves and don’t protect our children.
It’s those who were abused themselves and don’t do their own healing work to the roots of their being and therefore don’t protect our children.
It’s those who have some issue within themselves that blocks their seeing and taking protective and preventative action.
It’s those who are somehow acting out something from their own lives as children long, long ago.
It’s those who are blind, deaf, and numb, who don’t recognize what is occurring.

We are all somehow part of the problem.
We all somehow contribute to the problem.

If we just pay attention right now to the sexual abuse of children …
Just for starters …

Think of all the gymnasts who were sexually violated by gymnastic doctors, in a culture where people knew and kept their mouths shut.

Think of all the athletes who were sexually violated by coaches, in a culture where people knew and kept the secret.

Think of all the children who were allegedly sexually abused by scout leaders or volunteers in the Boy Scouts. Over 12,000 alleged instances by over 7800 alleged abusers. Data was kept by The Boy Scout organization since 1944 – “perversion files” about these violations – and these people were removed from scouting. But the Boy Scouts organization did not inform the community that these people were known to be abusers of children. They did not protect the children.

Think of all the children sexually violated by Catholic priests, children who wouldn’t have been abused if others in the Catholic culture who knew – not only at the level of priest, but upward in the hierarchy – had stepped up to protect the children.

The courageous and impactful movie, Spotlight, told the story of the Boston Globe revealing the layers and layers of child molestation by priests and the silence and lack of protection of the children by the Catholic chain of command. Also revealed was the neglect of others in the community to pay attention, take action, and reveal the tragic abuse long before it was actually done by the Globe. Among them, lawyers, journalists, and more …

Victim’s advocate Phil Saviano met with the reporters on the Spotlight team at the Globe, giving them an in depth understanding about the clergy abuse that was occurring.  He is known to have told them … “If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a village to abuse them.”

As a depth psychotherapist and Midwife to the Soul, I have been writing and teaching about this for years. There have been events occurring recently that brought it to the foreground again in my mind, heart and soul, calling me to speak out about it once more.

Mind you, this is a mirror to us not only of how we react to the sexual abuse of children, but also of how we react to other serious problems in our lives – in our families, in our institutions and organizations, in our countries and in our world.

Stay tuned for the next in this series … just as compelling as this installment …
perhaps even more.

 

*See Alice Miller’s profound book, For Your Own Good: Hidden cruelty in child-rearing and the roots of violence, original version, in German, 1980. Translation 1983, by Hildegarde and Hunter Hannum, published by Farrar, Straus, Giroux, New York.

© Judith Barr, 2019.

 

 

 

 

YOU MIGHT THINK IT’S OK* …

You might think it’s ok …
to yell at your children.
You might think it’s ok …
to hit your children.
You might think it’s ok …
to tease, ridicule, or humiliate your children.
I don’t think it’s ok.

You might think it’s ok …
to push your children to grow up,
before they’ve even been children.
Before they’ve even had a chance to develop.

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You might think it’s ok …
to believe thinking is more important
than any real feeling at all.
You might think it’s ok …
to disregard or forget the truth –
that in the first stages of their lives,
children cannot think at all;
they can only feel – physical, sensory, and emotional feelings.
You might think it’s ok …
to teach your children to ignore their feelings.
I don’t think it’s ok.

You may think it’s ok …
to enslave your children under any guise at all.
You may think it’s ok …
to brainwash your children under whatever pretense you choose.
I don’t think it’s ok.

You might think it’s ok …
to sexually abuse your children.
You might think it’s ok …
to force them.
You might think it’s ok …
to threaten them.
You might think it’s ok …
to seduce them.
I don’t think any of those things are ok.
I don’t think it’s ok to sexually molest, abuse, engage with children …
under any circumstance whatsoever.

You might think it’s ok …
to deny the abuse you experienced as a child.
You might think it’s ok …
to pretend it’s over and not affecting you.
You might think it’s ok …
to imagine or pretend the trauma you experienced as a child
is not impacting anyone at all today.
I don’t think it’s ok.
I don’t think it’s the truth.

You might think it’s ok …
to make-believe your taking things out on
children in your life today
has nothing to do with your having been abused as a child.
I don’t think it’s ok.

You might think it’s ok …
to justify all the reasons you think you have a right
to abuse the children in your life,
instead of taking responsibility for acting out your childhood traumas
on children in your life today.
I don’t.

You might think it’s ok …
to champion your excuses for abusing the adults in your life today, too,
instead of taking responsibility for acting out your early traumas on the adults
in your everyday current life.
I don’t.

You might think it’s ok …
to create trauma in someone else’s life today,
instead of owning and healing from the trauma in your own life –
today and long, long ago.
I don’t think it’s ok.

You might think it’s ok …
for you to be unconscious about trauma.
I don’t think it’s ok.

You might think it’s ok …
to normalize abuse and trauma.
I don’t.
You might think it’s ok …
to be blind to abuse and trauma.
I don’t.
You might think it’s ok …
to be deaf to abuse and trauma.
I don’t.
You might think it’s ok…
to be numb to abuse and trauma.
I don’t.
You might think it’s ok …
to refuse to do anything at all to help yourself
see, hear, and feel trauma.
I don’t think that’s ok.

I don’t think it’s ok to shut yourself off to your own trauma.
I don’t think it’s ok to disregard the trauma you create for others
when you ignore your own trauma.
I don’t think it’s ok for you to cause trauma for others near and far,
as a defense against recognizing, acknowledging, remembering,
feeling, and healing your own trauma.

You might think it’s ok …
for you to deny, discount and denigrate everything I’m saying.
I don’t.
I think your denigration is itself a red flag showing
everyone how you hide from your past trauma
and its consequences in our world – past and present.

I’m simply holding a mirror to you of yourself,
your culture,
and most of our world’s cultures.
A mirror of how we corrupt our power.
A mirror of how we perpetuate that misuse and abuse of our power …
up close and personally, as well as way out in the public arena and view.

You may think you’re entitled to do so …
because you have money, because you are bigger, because you’re well known, because you have power.
But I don’t think you’re entitled to do so.

You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a parent without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a coach without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a teacher without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a spiritual teacher without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a psychotherapist, counselor, or healer without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a doctor without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a business leader without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a media guru without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a celebrity without doing your own inner healing.
I don’t.
You may think it’s ok …
for you to be a government leader without doing your own inner healing.
But I don’t.

I don’t think it’s ok.
In each case you create more trauma for others –
for those who have already been traumatized and
for those who are being traumatized by you —
right now and in the future, short- and long-term future …
just because you were traumatized and refuse to tend to your own trauma.

You can make believe what you’re doing is ok.
But I know it isn’t ok.
You can make believe what you’re doing is the truth.
But I know it isn’t the truth.
You can make believe what I’m saying is fake.
But I know what I’m saying is the deep truth …
and is occurring throughout our land.**
You can make believe what you’re saying is love.
But I know it isn’t love.
Deep love and truth sees, hears, and feels the trauma you are causing
as a way to defend against the trauma you experienced as a child.

You might think it’s ok.
You might think it’s what you need to do to survive.
You might think it’s what you need to do to stay sane.
I think perhaps it was what you needed to do to survive and stay sane as a child.
But to do these things today ….
is irresponsible.
Cruel.
Harmful.
Destructive …
to you, to others, to our children, to our world, to our Earth.

The evidence of that is visible.
The proof of that is audible.
The verification of that is felt.
The confirmation of that is all around us.
The confirmation of that is within and all around us.

And every single day you think it’s okay for you …
to ignore, deny, and resist acknowledging this confirmation …
you perpetuate the problem,
you escalate the problem,
you increase the consequences for yourself and everyone else in our world.

You might think it’s ok.
I don’t.

 

*I thank Adam Schiff for the powerful words he used to convey his message. “You might think it’s ok.” These words resonated deeply to form the framework for my message. This is not political. It is, rather, about the trauma we’ve experienced and acted out on others.

Note:  I am a depth psychotherapist and midwife to the soul. In those capacities, I understand that we become more and more conscious as we open to it, as we develop the ability, readiness, and strength to safely remember, feel, deepen, heal, and grow. This is how I work with people.

But I also understand that there are people who have no intention whatsoever to do so. And that our cultures can become infected with that lack of intention, causing great harm to themselves and others.

Sometimes children run out into the street without looking – no awareness that they could cause their own harm or the harm of others. A caring adult will protect such children by pulling them out of the street. Sometimes adults in our world act in the same way. Someone needs to pull them out of the street … for their own sake and for the sake of others. And they need to alert others to the realization that there are adults acting like children, running out into the street and causing harm.

And someone needs to alert the others to look in a mirror and see how they, themselves, might be complicit in the harm.

**To learn more, read How Did We Get Here? Our Refusal to Know the Truth About Ourselves. Mysteries of Life, 2018.  https://judithbarr.com/how-did-we-get-here/  or Amazon: US | CA | UK | DE | ES | FR | IT

 

© Judith Barr, 2019.

AN OPEN LETTER TO CONGRESS

STOP! THIS ISN’T ABOUT POLITICS!

What’s going on in our country and our world is not about politics, although so many people think it is. It’s about our human defenses against feeling being acted out in the political arena day after day, hour after hour. People may insist it’s about politics and become addicted to politics as a new defense mechanism against what’s deep at the root.

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This isn’t about politics! It’s really about our fighting against remembering and feeling the traumas we’ve experienced – especially the ones from when we were children.  And it’s about that every time we defend against the past traumas that still live within us, we create new traumas that mirror the ancient ones.  And the new traumas we create have a traumatic impact on us, those around us, and even our world. And especially our children!

Sue Grafton, best-selling author of the alphabet mystery series, writes about this phenomenon in her book, O Is for Outlaw: “[When she built her current house,] was Laddie conscious of what she’d done or had she mimicked Duncan’s house inadvertently?  What is it that prompts us to reenact our unresolved issues? We revisit our wounds, constructing the past in hopes that this time we can make the ending turn out right.”

We, the people, do this all the time … individually, in our families, and communally on a larger scale … generation after generation after generation.  This is the true underlying cause of history repeating itself.

But instead of unconsciously and compulsively trying to make the ending turn out right, we need to heal the wound to its root. We need to become aware. We need the help to feel safely, our feelings from the trauma, and our other feelings, as well. We need the assistance to go through the feelings and come out the other side … without the need to hold those feelings at bay, without the resulting compulsion to act them out in our lives and our world, and without the blocks to our utilizing our minds, hearts, bodies and souls for healing, health, and well-being for all … that is now beyond our imagination. Only then can we help our children and generations to come with their feelings, with healing trauma, and with preventing future trauma.

Fred Rogers knew about feelings and their crucial place in our lives many decades ago, when he created his show, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, and when he testified before Congress in 1969 in an appeal for public television funding.

Mister Rogers created a relationship with each child who watched his show. He helped children know they were unique and liked just the way they are. He wanted Congress to experience and know the importance of a child’s being safe and able to express feelings in healthy ways – for self and with others. He knew the connection between that safe expression of feeling and mental health. And he was very clear that “it’s much more dramatic that two men could be working out their feelings of anger – much more dramatic than showing something of gunfire.”

To give an example to the Congress people, Mister Rogers told them the words to a song:

“What do you do with the mad that you feel? When you feel so mad you could bite. When the whole wide world seems oh so wrong, and nothing you do seems very right. What do you do? Do you punch a bag? Do you pound some clay or some dough? Do you round up friends for a game of tag or see how fast you go? It’s great to be able to stop when you’ve planned a thing that’s wrong. And be able to do something else instead, and think this song —

“I can stop when I want to. Can stop when I wish. Can stop, stop, stop anytime…. And what a good feeling to feel like this! And know that the feeling is really mine. Know that there’s something deep inside that helps us become what we can.”

In our world today, our healthy relationship with our feelings is desperately needed. Just as desperately as when Mister Rogers was working to help us with our feelings, and maybe even more.

I help adults create a healthy relationship with their feelings on a daily basis …
to help them heal from past trauma …
to help them prevent re-enactments of those past traumas …
to help prevent trauma to their children,
and to help them live healthy, full and fulfilling lives.

It is my honor and privilege to do so.
And it is my deep intention to continue to do so.

In addition, now I have a dream …
I am sitting in Congress, speaking to those who are considered leaders in government.
I am telling these men and women:

Each one of us was somehow wounded long, long ago when we were young.
The wound was too painful for a child to bear.
So we buried it and our feelings, too.
And then we invented ways to keep it all buried,
without even realizing we were doing that.

We didn’t have people to help us with those wounds and that pain.
Either our parents hadn’t learned how from their own experience
or maybe they were the ones who wounded us.

Left buried beneath our awareness, those wounds and traumas happened again and again –
at different ages, with different people, in different forms.
At some point, without realizing it, we were creating or re-enacting them over and over again.
Some say, “in an attempt to make it turn out right.”
Some say, “in an attempt to bring it into our consciousness so undeniably that we would finally work to heal it.”
And some say “both.”

I say “both.”

Unless we understand this, we cannot change it.
Unless we say “yes” to learning about it –
both in our minds and experientially in our lives –
we cannot change it.

The acting out in our country as a defense against ancient wounds
has escalated and escalated and escalated.
The degree of escalation is immeasurable.
But all we need to do is look, and we can see it …
yes, we can see it.
It is all around us.

You are leaders in our country.
Just like everyone else, you are reenacting painful experiences from your childhood … without even being aware of it.
Just like everyone else, you are trying to hold the memories and the feelings at bay.
Just like everyone else, you are acting out to defend against the pain of your own “once upon a time.”
It is destructive beyond measure.

Just like everyone else, you have the opportunity to explore, discover, and heal –
both from the trauma long ago and the impact of your reenactments on yourself, our country, and our whole world.
You are leaders in our country.
You have the responsibility to do this healing.
You have the ethical, moral, humanitarian, and soul responsibility to do your part of the healing …
and while doing so to help set our country and our government in alignment again;
and while doing so to model something new, something courageous, something life- and world-changing for our citizens.

I know it is painful to face and feel the trauma from the past,
but better that than create more trauma in order to avoid the past trauma.

Our citizens need to do this same work.
We each have that responsibility.
 But if you are our leaders …
your responsibility is even greater!

Our people are counting on you.
Our children are counting on you.
Our whole world is counting on you.
I am counting on you.

I waken and know this dream is reality.
I waken and I am still holding you accountable.
I waken and I am still counting on you.

With many prayers that you will take this responsibility seriously
and do your healing work.

Judith Barr

© Judith Barr, 2019