Tuesday, January 17, 2017

THE ULTIMATE SICKNESS: Causes, Symptoms, Aspects, Effects, Treatment, Part Thirty-Eight

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The present focus of the series is on the other not-yet-discussed causes of the Sickness which help clarify other components of the treatment which are required. Using excerpts from the book INSTABILITY / INSANITY: What the Advaita Teachings Can (and Cannot) Address, the insane and destabilizing effects of parental modeling are discussed: 

INSTABILITY / INSANITY: How Parental Modeling Is A Source 

How significant is "parental modeling" in a child's life? Earlier, the reason that personality forms early on in children - and what happens as a result - was explained: 

Personality forms early on as a result of familial dysfunctionalism. A child - trying to adapt and survive in an often threatening and / or senseless and / or insane environment - develops an ego ideal and a basic personality type (or several ego-states) in order to try to accommodate the people who seem to have her / his fate in their hands. As a result, a child - usually by the age of six - is being driven by a primary personality type that has been adopted subconsciously. With personality comes fears and desires and an inability to choose. Why? 

Because the personality controls all thoughts and words and deeds. Talk of "familial dysfunctionalism" usually inspires persons to recall "other families" that are indeed dysfunctional; egotism blocks any tendency to examine one's own family of origin or present family for evidence of dysfunctionalism. 

Yet the facts cannot be denied: if you have any personality traits, then your family of origin was dysfunctional; and if your child or children have personality traits, then your present family is dysfunctional. Personality cannot manifest in a dysfunctionalism-free vacuum. Research shows that - biological and / or genetic factors notwithstanding - parental modeling may play the most significant role in determining 

** whether children will show signs of being dysfunctional, unstable, moody, temperamental, and inconsistent 

as well as 

** whether personality disorders and even insanity will manifest. 

A parent can say repeatedly, "Do as I say, not as I do," but the children will do what their parents do, will behave as their parents behave, will believe what they parents believe, will think the way their parents think, and will eventually "become" their parent or parents. What the parent models for the child, the child will later model for the parent, and it is the latter that is so disturbing to a parent or parents who do not see what they have projected from themselves (from their false selves) onto their children. 

To understand the level of the impact of parental modeling on children, one can study a single disorder such as anxiety to see the effect: one family study that focused on children with anxiety disorders found, not surprisingly, that the children of parents with anxiety disorders develop higher rates of anxiety disorders than children of parents who do not model anxiety. 

Another study of parents with anxiety disorders found, not surprisingly, that their children suffered from higher rates of anxiety disorders than children in families where stability and calmness prevail. 

A third study considered the effects on children of parenting practices such as parental over-control vs. encouraging children to develop certain levels of independence; parental over-protection vs. allowing the children to develop a sense of confidence; over-reacting vs. avoiding drama and histrionics; parental emotional warmth vs. coldness; parental negativity vs. positivity; parental light-heartedness vs. being overly-serious; 

parental indulgence vs. requiring children to accept certain responsibilities in the home; parental over-concern with self vs. a balance of concern with the issues of importance to children; parental rejection vs. acceptance; parental criticism vs. positive reinforcement; and parenting styles (including hugging vs. not hugging, telling the child that he / she is loved vs. not expressing love regularly, and communicating with the child vs. being isolated and unavailable). 

The study proved that factors that may pose a risk for the development of child anxiety include parental over-control; over-protection; over-reacting; being histrionic and dramatic; being overly-serious; coldness; negativity; parental indulgence; parental over-concern with self; parental rejection; parental criticism; and parenting styles that evidence the traits mentioned earlier that are especially typical in cultures that share one particular ancestry in common, namely, being cold and uncaring and rigid and distant and excessively formal and remote and detached and aloof. 

[Some have asked that the race of people who have been alluded to as the one that has created the coldest cultures be identified. The answer: do your own research, or, more to the point, study your own culture objectively and study yourself objectively to see if those traits above are pervasive in your culture and in yourself. If so, if you as a parent are modeling those traits, then research shows that you may expect those traits to manifest in your child / children, continuing the perpetuation of those traits via acculturation and conditioning and domestication and assuring that your children will develop a variety of disorders as a result.] 

Have the non-dual teachings been shown to be effective in reducing anxiety and eliminating the drama and histrionics that are so pervasive in some homes? Absolutely. Can the teachings be said to be the only requirement for bringing about a more peaceful environment in every case? Of course not. Do "the realized" model something quite to the contrary of such parenting behaviors as over-control; over-reacting; excessive seriousness; coldness; negativity; indulgence; over-concern with self; rejection; criticism; and being cold and uncaring and rigid and distant and excessively formal and remote and detached and aloof? Absolutely. 

The one that has realized knows the Oneness and knows Real Love, and being cold and uncaring and rigid and distant and excessively formal and remote and detached and aloof are not compatible with either True Love or Wisdom or Realization. 

When this topic was discussed with one parent, he said, "I have subconsciously done all of the things you mention and been all of those ways you mentioned. Is it too late to help my child if I change now?" 

The reply: "What could be the harm in changing and seeing for yourself? What do you think the worst is that could happen if you stop focusing on being loved and if you instead understand Real Love and share It?" 

Those addicted to chaos will not find the company of "a Realized non-dualist" to be familiar or comfortable. "The Realized" will not model instability, insanity, moodiness, or being temperamental and inconsistent and unpredictable. 

Can you see how trying on a child's psyche such inconsistency and unpredictability must be? Can you see how trying on a relationship such inconsistency and unpredictability must be? Can you see how trying on your own psyche such inconsistency and unpredictability must be? 

Non-duality invites seekers to become fixed - fixed as the Absolute and fixed as the Nothingness beyond - in order to be free of (relatively speaking) those self-defeating and self-destructive traits. Advaita invites seekers to become stabilized and restored to sanity in order to break the pattern of the many previous generations that have passed down a debilitating legacy that includes being cold and uncaring and rigid and distant and excessively formal and remote and detached and aloof and overly-serious and self-absorbed and self-destructive and destructive of others. 

When the Oneness is understood and when True Love makes clear that you are everything and everyone, then being cold and uncaring and rigid and distant and excessively formal and remote and detached and aloof will naturally fade away. 

To be continued. 

Please enter into the silence of contemplation. 

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