Springingtiger's Blog

Sewage and Other Shit

I have had a revelation. Yesterday I finally got to see ParaNorman and I was deeply moved, I think because I identified very much with Norman and Aggie. I was the freak, the weird kid, the kid who was always out of place; I am still waiting for the mother-ship to come and take me home!

After leaving the cinema I found I needed to be alone to try and process my feelings and at this point I realised more vividly than ever how impossibly noisy Glasgow can be. I don’t think I had previously understood how intimately my sensory processing is linked with my feelings,. It became obvious to me that I can process my emotions or the information of my senses, but not both at once, and I don’t get to choose. It also became obvious to me that when I am processing my internal feelings, I do not process external information; also that there is no point feeding me more information while I am already processing the information I’ve just been given because I won’t hear it.

I am currently attending a weekly seminar run by Landmark, “Causing The Miraculous”, every decade or so I do these things and then I remember why and how much I hate seminars. Since Landmark took over from Werner Erhard Associates the value of the material to me personally, has continuously declined to the point where I find much of it irrelevant, but there are those for whom it is appropriate. I dislike being in a room full of people at the best of times, but when they are spouting stuff, with which I do not agree, as if it were true, it becomes intolerable. I also dislike the tendency to redefine our language, if people must use terminology they should have the decency to use it correctly and should they develop and argument from it the argument should be logical. Landmark has often been accused of being a cult, which it isn’t, however their insistence that participants unquestioningly accept their terminology, and devote time to inviting others to participate, could (to a casual observer) resemble the behaviour of a cult.

I must stress that the seminar is not without value. It predicates that we are content to accept much in life with which we are not happy, the seminar calls this “The Sewage” and this dis-empowers us; the process of distinguishing is liberating because it is only when we are aware of that with which we are putting up, that we can choose to change it. Poor Norman is prepared to put up with the ridicule and bullying he receives, just as all those around him are locked into a life of enacting stereotypes and repeating the same mistakes generation after generation. Freedom only comes when the cycle of repetition is recognised and replaced with a new behaviour. What tied ParaNorman to the seminar was the moment towards the end when Neil is seen reading “The A to Z of Sewage”, it was a timely reminder to keep aware.

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