When things go wrong in our relationships, we often blame external factors such as other people, long working hours, or, more recently, the challenges of a global pandemic. However, a more significant reason why relationships suffer is that most of us have unresolved inner conflicts that interfere with our ability to trust and love. These conflicts occur between different and often competing 'parts' of our self, and also between parts of our self and parts of our partner's self. This complex communication dynamic is easier to understand and work with if we imagine that we are each made up of many different selves, and the ones who get the least attention , love, and expression are those most likely to cause problems in our life. Understanding and learning to accept our 'characters' brings inner content and peace and frees us to focus on and nurture our relationships. We are never 'out of character ' Most of us have acted or spoken in ways that feel ‘out of character’ … [Read more...] about The Theatre of Marriage
Marriage today isn’t what it used to be. Throughout history, marriage has always been first and foremost an economic arrangement, with a couple entering into a lifelong relationship for the purpose of raising children and maintaining family property. All the better if the young couple just happened to be in love, but even if the new bride and groom barely knew each other, there was always the hope that love would grow between them over time. By the nineteenth century, the dilemma of marriage for love or money was a common theme in literature. And by the twentieth century, most people would have agreed that a young couple considering marriage should love each other. Still, expectations then were lower than today. For one thing, there were clear gender roles for the future husband and wife to act out. And for another thing, people viewed spouses as life partners within a complex social network of family and friends. Nowadays, people expect their spouses to be their … [Read more...] about Are Open Marriages Happier?
Source: "Othello's Lamentation" by William Salter, from Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0 We start this series of comments on aesthetic cognitivism with reflections by the psychologist Ellen Winner, author of the book How Art Works: A Psychological Exploration . Aesthetic cognitivism refers to the philosophical claim that aesthetic engagement advances knowledge and enhances understanding. Is this claim true? How would we know? By Ellen Winner In his book, Ways of Worldmaking , philosopher Nelson Goodman makes the bold claim that “the arts must be taken no less seriously than the sciences as modes of discovery, creation, and enlargement of knowledge in the broad sense of advancement of the understanding” (Goodman, 1978, p. 102). Painter György Kepes said that both the artist and the scientist “reach beneath surface phenomena to discover basic natural pattern and basic natural process" (Kepes, 1960, p. 6). These statements have a “feel right” quality to them, … [Read more...] about What Does Aesthetic Cognitivism Really Mean, Anyway?
On a plane, passengers have neither control nor escape. If something goes wrong, there is nothing they can do. The idea of being helpless when in danger triggers the release of stress hormones . If the stress hormones build up too much, imagination takes over. The thought of the plane falling out of the sky stops being just a thought. Even as the plane is flying fine, the anxious passenger believes the plane is plunging. Our situation in this pandemic is similar. We have neither control of the situation nor a way to escape it. The idea of contracting the virus can release stress hormones. If the thought persists and stress hormone levels build up, we — like passengers on a plane — may lose our ability to separate imagination from reality. The thought of being in intensive care can overtake us even as we go through the day in good health. If someone confronts us with the fact that we don't need to be so distraught, we may justify our distress by saying, "But it could … [Read more...] about Anxious? Starting to Panic? Check Your Imagination
Today, I received this email: "I am boarding a JetBlue flight later today in the afternoon. I was kind off working my emotions but then I read the news on the lion air flight and I’m pretty messed up now any quick tips?" I replied, What happens in developing countries has nothing to do with your safety where aviation technology is well-developed. There are a number of new low cost airlines trying to outdo each other at cost- cutting and at growing rapidly. The low pay doesn't attract competent pilots and mechanics. The EU banned all ll Indonesian airline companies from flying into the EU until recently due to safety concerns. Currently banned airlines are listed here . It’s awful. And, though meeting safety standards is a serious problem there, is not a problem here. Here, we have not had a crash of a major airline in over 15 years. After I answered the email, I looked into Lion Air Further I found this on Wikipedia : 14 January 2002. A Lion Air 737 crashed … [Read more...] about Does the Lion Air Crash Cause You Concern About Your Flying?