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People vary in the resources available to them to resist or rework the cultural meanings of illness. Those meanings present a problem to patient, family, and practitioner every bit as difficult as the lesion itself. A final aspect of this type of illness meaning deserves mention. The cultural meanings of illness shape suffering as a distinctive moral or spiritual form of distress. Whether suffering is cast as the ritual enactment of despair, as paradigmatic moral exemplars of how pain and loss should be borne (as in the case of Job), or as the ultimately existential human dilemma of being alone in a meaningless world, local cultural systems provide both the theoretical framework of myth and the established script for ritual behavior that transform an individual's affliction into a sanctioned symbolic form for the group. The German phenomenologist Plessner (1970) makes the cultural point about suffering this way. Illness in modern Europe or the United States, he avows, brings the sick person to the recognition of a fundamental aspect of the divided nature of the human condition in the West: namely, that each of us is his or her body and has (experiences) a body. In this formulation, the sick person is the sick body and also recognizes that he or she has a sick body that is distinct from self and that the person observes as if it were someone else. As a result, the sick both are their illness and are distanced, even alienated, from the illness. Eliot may have had this in mind when he spoke of the dissociation of sensibility (cited in Rycroft 1986, 284). When you are ready, sit in a comfortable position without any outer distractions. We are going to begin working with the body deva through inner symbols. It is through working with symbols that we can initially understand concepts such as this in a simple manner. We relate spiritually through the use of symbols, so even if this type of work is totally new to you, or you don't feel as if you are a great visualizer, it is likely that, after a few tries, you will be able to create the appropriate symbol for you. To start, you are going to consider that you have a body deva. I would like you to visualize it. This visual can be anything, and the purpose of this initially is to create a sort of persona, or character, with which you can communicate on some level. It is likely to be something totally unique to you. This could be you at your current age or another age. It could be something entirely extraordinary, such as a fairy or dragon.

We make meaning in the frontal lobe of the brain where feelings and thoughts join together to create a unified story about our experiences. In reality, the processing of trauma is much more complex than this explanation and, naturally, DID develops over a course of events, not just a single episode. What we call memory, be it traumatic or not, is the interpretation and integration of many life experiences coming together to form a single narrative, referred to as semantic memory. More and more research is being done on the way the brain processes trauma, which will be key to furthering our understanding and ability to treat trauma survivors successfully. Until then, we do the best we can. DID is a prime example of how survivors do just that. It truly is a lifesaving response to overwhelming life experiences. THE EFFECTS OF TRAUMA The effects of dissociation are far-reaching and change in form and intensity depending on an individual's own experience at the time. If the issue is one of self-regulation, which is a common characteristic of borderline personality disorder, a person might find that it is difficult to keep emotions at a level that feels tolerable. How many of these are there? How often does everyone agree, and how often do things end well? Everyone's lives are complicated, and so are their losses, of course. Losses become complicated when you don't expect them to happen. In other words, this loss was a surprise. While you may name it, and it may well be a complicated loss, no matter how complex, the possibility for healing is always there. Let's look at some examples of how we can change our thinking. In a relationship, when one person wants a separation and the other one doesn't, you may want to add this to your thinking: While I don't understand this separation now, I will accept it as reality so healing can begin.

The body is therefore able to react to external influences appropriately and in the best possible way, and to counterbalance any disturbances. Smoky Quartz/Morion Smoky quartz is formed when quartz is subjected to natural radioactive radiation from the surrounding rock. It increases resistance to radiation and alleviates radiation damage. It has a very strong relaxing effect and is regarded as a classic anti-stress crystal. Electromagnetic pollution in particular causes a constant stress reaction in the body, a kind of permanent state of unease or anxiety that persists until the body`s energy reserves are exhausted. The symptoms include tension and headaches, restlessness, irritability, sleep disturbances, nervousness, and digestive problems. The usual outcome is chronic exhaustion and a reduced immune response, opening the door to further disease. In such cases, smoky quartz may help to dissolve any tension. It heightens our ability to withstand stress and strengthens our nerves so that we become less susceptible to external influences. As a child of the eighties, I didn't grow up with a computer or a cell phone, let alone an internet connection. But a few years went by, and I found myself in that hotel room, trying to come to grips with the realities of what I could only assume to be the real world. After it happened that first time, I lay in bed, pretending to be asleep, trying to make sense of the world and my place in it, while my abuser lay in the other bed, watching a late-night HBO film. Then I realized how much more enjoyable it was to watch a girl take off her clothes and get naked on a TV screen than to take off mine in front of a creepy old man. Then a friend of my parents built us an inexpensive computer around the same time AOL started sending us free CD-ROMs to try out this thing called the internet, a party my family was severely late to. Then I realized you could search the internet for anything. Then I wondered if the kind of HBO videos I watched at the hotel could be found on my computer. Then I realized that instead of looking at pictures of adults, a more appealing idea was to find pictures of girls my age, the kind of girls I wanted to like me. That didn't work at all. The first time I typed that search, AOL said, Goodbye.

It was always tough, that's the point of running at 5 in the morning, but whether or not it was done wasn't a consideration. To be transparent here, this habit wasn't created easily. Actually, yes it was, what am I saying. Eventually I just decided to make it a habit and it became a habit. But my naturally lazy ass resisted forming this habit for a long time. I stood in my own way. Sound familiar? This discipline thing is less complicated than we want it to be. We want it to be complicated because complicated things are better solved for another day or by another person. Discipline, the act of doing things that will get you what you want most in life, is simple. What you tried might not have worked as well as you hoped, but likely you felt better about yourself for trying. Likely you felt a bit happier knowing that you could change an old pattern to bring you better outcomes. Likely you felt more freedom to be the person you want to be. Who Do You Want to Be? Most all of us would like to be different in some aspect of our life. We want to grow or change in a way that allows us to create the kind of life we want for ourselves. Most of us also want to find our place in this complex world and make a meaningful contribution. Perhaps you have old history and beliefs that you don't want to pass on to your children, or you want to help your children to live a better life than you had. Maybe you have a talent or passion in your life that you want to contribute. Perhaps you are in a job that is no longer satisfying and you would like to do something more rewarding.

Physical cues and nonverbal signals are great tools of building a person's attitude. For instance, if you are highly competitive, you will adopt the American Cross legged gesture locked with one hand. It displays self-confidence and also shows that the person is stubborn having an opinion of his own. The ankle lock is a common gesture among people. When you are sitting on a chair, you sometimes lock your ankles with the feet drawn under the chair. Alternatively, you may also lock your feet around the chair's leg. A gentleman spreads out his knees along with clenched fists or holds the chair's armrest when he locks his ankles. Similarly, a woman places her legs below her chair along with knees touching each other and with her feet pointing towards one direction only when she locks her ankles. Shy women usually practice the gesture of leg twine. The gesture involves locking one foot on top of the other under the knee. The modern Western cultural orientation contributes to our experience of suffering precisely through this reciprocal relationship between the actual experience qua experience and how each of us relates to that experience as an observing self. We might say that culture fills the space between the immediate embodiment of sickness as physiological process and its mediated (therefore meaning-laden) experience as human phenomenon--for example, as an alienated part of body-self, as a vehicle for transcendence, or as a source of embarrassment or grief. Illness takes on meaning as suffering because of the way this relationship between body and self is mediated by cultural symbols of a religious, moral, or spiritual kind. Inasmuch as the Western experience of the body-self dichotomy has throughout this century been exported to the rest of the world as a psychological component of modernization, perhaps the division of experience and meaning will become, at least for those most strongly influenced by Western values, universal in illness around the globe. Let us restate the issue in sociological terms. Following Schutz (1968), we can view the individual in society as acting in the world by taking up a common-sense perspective on daily life events. The perspective comes from a local cultural system as the accepted way of conceiving (and thereby replicating) social reality. We create, not just discover, meaning in experiences through the process of meeting practical resistances in the real world, obstacles owing to the unequal distribution of available resources or the unpredictability and uncontrollability of life problems, for example. When we meet up with the resistance offered by profound life experience--the death of a child or parent or spouse, the loss of a job or home, serious illness, substantial disability--we are shocked out of our common-sensical perspective on the world (Keyes 1985). We are then in a transitional situation in which we must adopt some other perspective on our experience.