Mindfulness in Psychoanalysis.
Iphotoimpression.com, is a service that takes from psychoanalysis the drive to create, and mixes it up with multi-medium arts and philosophies to arrive at instructions for a life well lived.
Ego and Instinct together create our particular brand of perspective and consciousness. It is from this seat of consciousness that we evaluate every thing we see, every thing we do, into the binomial system that we have evolved: (0 or 1).
(I like it, I don’t like it, I like this, I don’t like that, yes, no, I like this, I don’t like this. )
The meaning of the mindful law of attraction to psychoanalysis resides in the arena of drive and desire. The sum total of our “no’s & our “yes’s,” Becomes the aim, or direction of the instinct.
What you like and what you don’t like changes over time. As long as you have your consciousness, the seat from which you observe both internal and external data, you are evolving. You are in a state of flux, of flow–flowing.
If your consciousness is not disturbed–you are safe. As soon as the organism is disturbed either from within or without, you experience the intrusion of stress, a slight nod from the adrenal system that subjectively we experience or ignore. (It’s probably a binomial thing). Nonetheless, it gets louder over time. A wound that starts out as a minor stressor can grow exponentially into an attack of anxiety–A complete overload of the immure system.
Stress is the biological response to anything that impinged on you in any way, from light, to heat, to sensation, through to thought, mood and feeling & more. We measure stress both through quantity and quality. How much stress do you feel and how intense is the feeling?
Stress is biology. Anxiety is your conscious response to becoming aware that your biology just did something, or said something; it communicated to the aspect of you that collects and assesses that your attention is required.
Emotions can be as smooth as a mirror-lake in the mountains, or they can churn like a restless sea in a wind blown storm. Emotions are classified first as pain or comfort and later are further classified by intensity.
A pain can come from a sliver or from an ax; the range is regulated by how much, and how fast the Adrenalin is pouring into the system and how fast it is being absorbed.
This is a bit like learning the meaning of shutter speed and aperture on a camera. Most of us have that feature set on either auto or a programmed mode.
A story to go along with an idea:
Let me continue with a short story. A old patient wanted to re-gain her spirituality; however, many years before she had had a major falling out with the Church, and eventually with all churches, indeed her fall-out with the church became her fall out with her God.
She obsessed over her anxiety, she cried that she was alone, she pushed away anyone who tried to help her or even tried to get close to her. Her heart was entirely closed to the idea of rekindling her relationship with God or of attempting intimacy with anyone. She saw beauty but could not let it in. She turned away from truth for fear that she would be hurt by knowing it.
During one session I asked her what she thought what might happen if she walked into a church to help her remember the smells and the sensual delights she felt when she was wrapped by a location that had previously held the peace and serenity she was wanting again.
Absolutely refused. She was so frightened to hear rejection from any authority that she let no relationship pass the gate where her heart, her passion, for life lived in a small quiet corner, in the recesses of her heart & mind.
Old anger had become a fear of feeling. What if she heard something she did not want to hear? What if someone suggested that she begin to proceed on a healthier path? As long as she alone knew the source of her withholding, no one could extract it from her. All the resistances to changing were stock-piled behind a concrete wall of stubborn will-fullness.
In the next session she said she saw no need to come back to analysis since it was clear that I did not know when to stop. Her last session had produced too many feelings and she was not going to pay me just to feel worst than when she came in.
I had been accused of attempting to crush her rationalizations with mere emotion, and emotions only lead a person to unreasonable positions.
Under the totality of the narrative, the patient had created and was using all her energy to keep away feeling, leaving her with no room to create a life that might include joy, if not peace. She was locked away, but I had picked at the lock and that sent her back in service of her ego. I could not be trusted if she thought that the analysis would influence her. Above everything else, she knew she did not want to be influenced by anyone.
I told her that I so despised authority that I stopped listening to myself a long time ago.
She wavered in the transference between loving to hate me and in thinking I might be as crazy as her. That created a strong enough bond to keep the transference on a steady course. There would be time, time to see what the relationship will look like when she begins to recognize that what she shouts most vociferously about is being a victim of her own circumstances. She told me she abhorred victims and she thought she could chew them up and spit them out before they knew what was happening to them. The delusion lies not in the accuracy of that statement but in the idea that it was she who was most hurt, most devastated by her sabotaging intimacies.
What is art and what is psychoanalysis?
There are two themes in the above introduction to this essay. One involves what it is like to practice the art of psychoanalysis, and the second is the theme of art for art sake. I am inclined to believe that the two marry very nicely. Psychoanalysis has a lot in common with art, both require a lot of technical training and both have foundations in altruistic aspects of being humans. I am very interested in humans, they interest me as much as the other parts of nature do. Pine trees and red leaf maples are gorgeous like some humans are. Filthy dying swamps and the smell of low-tide also have a wabi-sabi kind of charm that smells like other aspects of humanity.
Perhaps it is in the attainment of a goal that the two disciplines meet. When I am involved with a digital painting or with a patient, nothing else is around to distract me from my mission in the moment: do the best that I can to represent and impress truth and beauty. I use the word impress as the root of the word impressionism.
Psychoanalysis has a lot in common with impressionism. Transference between the patient and the analyst is emotional impressionism. The painting above is an impression of Canada a place where much of my love is stored among the antiquities of my ancestors–poor farmers creating large families to populate the cold northern part of America, baptized as much by native Americans as by the English or the French.
To think like an artist and to think like an analyst require similar talents. Both causes require talent and both causes require time and dedication as well as a deep respect for the wisdom of witnessing as a form of cure for the existential conditions that humankind faces today in 21st century civilization. So many minute decisions are involved in the exact shade of color that is chosen and so many minute decisions are involved in deciding when an intervention is called for and when it is best withheld.
The disciplines of psychoanalysis and the disciplines of art require tremendous consideration be given to the subjective. Both disciplines necessitate boldness as well as empathy and contemplation.
Both require a gentle application of knowledge and neither can be rushed. There is a form of the sacred to both endeavors. In each form there is great desire to contribute.
Color, mood, form, lines, boundaries, choices, and “decisions and revisions” are always at play.
The interesting part is knowing that I never know the out-come before I star; I do not know the out-come until I am finished. I think both aspects of me have enjoyed the moments during which I was engaged. Both applications of myself take me out of my shell, my solitude, my narcissism, long enough to find and express joy in the process as much as the product.