Sun and Mercury square Neptune: Remember your integrity

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Now that Sunday’s Gemini eclipse has us embracing our dark inner twin, and Mercury’s overnight conjunction to Jupiter in Taurus has us ‘thinking big’, the sky is reminding us to ‘keep it real’. Tomorrow at 4:55 pm EDT, the Gemini Sun squares Neptune in Pisces. On Friday, Mercury does the same.

Simplified chart section showing the Gemini Sun (yellow circle) square Neptune in Pisces (blue trident). Mercury (green glyph with horns) is also moving in to square Neptune. Both Sun and Mercury are also applying to square Chiron (orange key): the inner tension to align with your integrity will find healing through honest words and actions.

Simplified chart section showing the Gemini Sun (yellow circle) square Neptune in Pisces (blue trident). Mercury (green glyph with horns) is also moving in to square Neptune. Both Sun and Mercury are also applying to square Chiron (orange key): the inner tension to align with your integrity will find healing through honest words and actions.

Since this is Neptune we’re talking about – planet of the fuzzy dreamtime and porous boundaries that let the water seep through – both squares are in effect now. As it is, this two-week period between eclipses we’re in now is likely to be marked by a sense of time moving quickly and depositing us someplace further along the trail than usual. Eclipse periods can feel a little surreal even without Neptune involved. So the idea this week is to track any eclipse revelations you received carefully. Keep them front and center so you can integrate them consciously, rather than letting them slip back into the shadows.

Especially with the Mercury-Jupiter influence last night, you’ll want to check that any ‘thinking big’ you do is still in integrity with your larger goals. Fantasy has its place; acting on them takes clarity and clear boundaries.

Again, sometimes even without Neptune in the game things can get a little slippery. Consider that a few years ago, a survey titled “The Day America Told the Truth” revealed that 93% of Americans admit to lying “regularly and habitually” at work; 35% admitted they have had or were currently having an affair, which they were keeping secret from their mates.

We’re a culture of white liars. It feels harsh to hear; we all want to believe we are good, honest people. Most of the time, for the most part, we are. Some of the time, most of us aren’t.

Brad Blanton has addressed this in his book Radical Honesty – which is, as you might guess, pretty radical. He advocates for telling the truth to your parents decades after ‘borrowing’ the car without permission – or decades after they stopped abusing you. The affair you had, the fact that you think your coworker is ugly – or that you’re attracted to him – are all on the table in a process intended to be therapeutic, even if it sounds harrowing and barbaric at first.

Really? I’m supposed to tell someone something hurtful, just for the sake of honesty?

Really. Here is some of Blanton’s rational for the process – and he emphasizes that this is a process; this is not hit-and-run honesty. In answer to the question, “Is it possible to be completely honest without hurting a person’s feelings?” He writes:

“Probably not. … I recommend you hurt people’s feelings and stay with them past the hurt. I also recommend that you offend people. We can all get over having our feelings hurt and we can get over being offended. These are not permanent conditions; they are feelings that come and go. On the other side of that reaction is a conversation in which your mutual honesty creates an intimacy not possible if you are hiding something for the sake of someone’s feelings.”

He notes that when you are hurt or offended – and speak your resentment out loud, specifically addressing what was actually said or done – you get real dialogue going. And you’ll likely get over the anger you feel in 20 minutes – as opposed to 20 years of avoiding that anger, or holding back a lie.

Dishonesty, says Blanton, eats up a huge amount of energy – energy that could be better spent on creativity, better productivity at work, more fun in personal relationships, hotter sex. It’s energy we’ll need to have at our disposal in this ever-quickening world in general, and through the astrological events of the next few months especially.

Most of us aren’t going to suddenly walk around spouting truths we’ve been keeping secret for years any more than we might lob Molotov truth cocktails at strangers in the grocery store. We can, however, take this opportunity of the Sun and Mercury squaring Neptune to keep one eye on our integrity, and to practice. Forget laying a guilt trip on yourself. This isn’t about being moral or ‘good’. According to Blanton, this is strictly practical: “If you go out and tell each other the truth you’ll be happier. You’re better nurtured in a world in which you’re telling the truth than you are in a world in which you’re cowering, hiding and lying.”

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93 Responses to Sun and Mercury square Neptune: Remember your integrity

  1. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Hey Cara! I’m further down south, in the eternal city, Rome. Have a great weekend!

  2. CaraSusanetta CaraSusanetta says:

    I’m with you guys on the nvc. So needed personally and in this world. Have a lot of food for thought and practice ahead this weekend on it, I believe. Shouting out to another friend in Italia – hey Paola, sexy translator from Milan! Huffy, where are you stationed?

  3. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Sweet marymack – so glad the nvc resonated with you. Actually it was a joint effort – cos I brought it up, but it was Paola who posted the link. Will ask my friend for any suggestions and get back to you on PW as soon as I know something. And have a good look yourself on the Internet – sounds as if you’re in the right space to find what you’re looking for. I’m glad you felt my hugs from this part of the world!

  4. marymack says:

    Huffy — yes! went to site you included and felt instant hope/relief. Let me know your friend’s recommendations, if that works. I’m very grateful, Huffy (just typed “huggy” — an unconscious feeling of your embrace(s) … maybe? :)
    mm.

  5. Katie Vee says:

    Amanda! Whoo. Had to scroll way, way, way down to find your lil’ gem. Busy place! I would have answered yesterday but between working all day, the late meeting, hair appointment, “business” dinner out, and concert facilitating my brain was not functioning at all when I got home in the wee hours of the morning. Hopefully it is now. But no promises.

    I completely agree with you. She isn’t practicing radical honesty–or even any kind of “nice” honesty–in the true sense of its meaning. It’s more of a I’ll-tell-you-exactly-how-I-feel-and-you-can-just-deal-with-it kind of attitude. The kind of attitude that puts so many people OFF honesty. You’re right: There is no follow through from her. She can dish it up and serve it to you (um, throw it in your face?) but can’t handle any discussion about what’s been said. The insecurity she could be feeling makes sense. These bouts of honesty often come when something good, productive, etc. happens for someone else. Feeling insecure would make it hard for her to hear someone else’s honest opinion. I don’t think you’re off base, I think you hit it out of the freakin’ park and rounded all the bases. Home run, baby! I re-read stormi and Alexander’s threads and am going to check out the new PW post today too. I don’t think it’s my place to fix her–if such a thing is even possible for anyone to do to anyone else anyhow–but trying to create honest dialogue around her need to for necessary and rough honesty could be start. Thanks for your thoughts, Amanda! They are appreciated.

  6. Lizzy Huffy says:

    marymack – let me know if you’re interested in nvc – I’m seeing my friend early next week…

  7. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Hugging ‘Tibetan Kagyu lineage’ – I was sure… fantastic! No beating about the bush with those guys – and a lot of compassion. That’s one hell of a journey you’ve been through these last years my lad.
    And hey – looks like you’ve found your sexy translator on these pages! (Paola…). Basta chiedere.. (all you have to do is ask..).
    “So begins another weary day”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJTT5JgZHSU

  8. Carrie says:

    “and once I felt a very strong energetic strange thing going on with the person I was translating, who unfortunately was not an ex-monk but a married man.
    In all my integrity, honest and enthusiasm, I told him.”

    I had the same energetic (mine were sexually charged) feelings for a married man (the first time for a married/taken man EVER) and I could never tell him. His wife was my friend too which would have made things Very Awkward. I know it would have made him very uncomfortable too because I don’t think he felt the same toward me.

    Some things are better left unsaid. I told my husband at the time (in the spirit of honesty and integrity) but that’s as far as it went.

  9. paola paola says:

    Marymack,
    I think so but don’t know for sure at 100%.
    You can find info here:

    http://www.cnvc.org/

    … and maybe people in the US as well!

  10. marymack says:

    MandM — OK! I love this. What a great idea this village creates.
    Paola, is non-violent communication similar to radical honesty?
    mm

    PS: bravo on the smiley, MandM

  11. paola paola says:

    Marymack,
    I have a dear friend who does non-violent communication too, she lives in France and speaks very good English. Uses skype.

    Kind of OT: I am a (sexy) Italian translator :-), and once I felt a very strong energetic strange thing going on with the person I was translating, who unfortunately was not an ex-monk but a married man.
    In all my integrity, honest and enthusiasm, I told him.

  12. MandyM MandyM says:

    What happened????? Did you see????? I made a yellow smiley face!!!!!!! How did I do that????? ;) :)

  13. MandyM MandyM says:

    Huffy: Thank You!! Aww, you guys make me all warm and mushy :)
    MaryMack: I’m a technical idiot but if you can set this up I’m in! – it does come with a sexy Italian translator right?

  14. marymack says:

    thank you, Huffy … I”ll be checking back periodically to see what others might recommend … would that we could transform this blog into a group .. radical!
    mm.

  15. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Huffy, Tibetan Kagyu lineage. I want a sexy Italian translator too, just sayin’… ;)

  16. Lizzy Huffy says:

    marymack – I’m sure you’ll get suggestions from folks here – but if nes I could find out ftom my friend, who I mentioned, who holds workshops in non violent communication. He lives in Italy – but he might know of skype communities.

  17. marymack says:

    Ideas from anyone about finding a good group to encourage/subscribe to radical honesty? I’m open to skyping, whatever, for the evolved and spirit-oriented group.
    m.

  18. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Some years ago I attended a buddhist retreat given by a lovely guy, who had just ‘de-monked’. He had fallen in love with his translator (which is quite common) and left monkdom to be with her. He was like a newly hatched chick – he told me how weird it felt to be out in the world again. And as if that wasn’t enough, he had to deal with learning a new language and culture cos his girlfriend was Italian. I remember being so touched by his openess and fragility – but he was also very strong, and a good teacher.

  19. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Thanks Hugging! (already forgotten your name..). What ‘branch’ of buddhism?

  20. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Ack!! I revealed myself! Don’t tell anyone.

    14 years as a buddhist monk (1994-2009)… and I still can’t hit the gong right.

  21. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Yes – good to have you back MandyM!

  22. Carrie says:

    “Dating suck balls.”

    If only…eh HS? :::giggling:::

  23. Carrie says:

    HS: I love the “Mr Happy” comment. Very funny rant indeed!

  24. Carrie says:

    “Please video tape this as a learning and discussion tool for the rest of us.”
    “Holiday & Carrie: I want to see the video too!!”

    My parents have not been together since I was 18. They divorced for the second time then. My dad would fall over in shock if I did that; he is a strict Pentecostal Christian and that would probably kill him. :::laughing::: My Mom is remarried (for the ninth time ) to a guy much older who has money (yes, she married him for it) and she would probably find every negative thing in the book to say to me were I to do that. As for video taping it, I would not do that because I am not that much of an exhibitionist and who wants to see old people falling over and dying or being cruel?

    I currently have no contact with my narcissistic mother, have some contact with my father because I manage his finances and care, have superficial contact with my younger brother (the “golden child” of my N mother) and some contact with my paternal Grandmother (who is also Pentecostal). My older brother died in 2008; we were not close (as is typical of families with an N parent). I have an Aunt whom I like but as she is my mother’s only sister (and they are close) I dislike putting her in the middle.

    Was it to see the wrinklies’ reactions or to see me naked that makes some of you say you want to see that video? :::giggling::: If it was the latter you would laugh to see me; I am a fat and wrinkly person (think fat shar-pei dog but without the fur and not cute and cuddly). :::laughing again::: Isn’t THAT a visual?

    I love this group; you all make me laugh and laughter is a Good Thing!

  25. CaraSusanetta CaraSusanetta says:

    Oh, and BTW, HS, your rant this morning had me on the floor laughing. I’m glad everybody seems to have got the joke. :)

  26. MandyM MandyM says:

    Holiday & Carrie: I want to see the video too!!
    HS: Good to be back, the New Moon did me in. As of May 12, I am officially closer to being 50 than 49. I think that big ol’ Desert Stinger Moon sucked my very last egg out of me. I am so looking forward to being the Crone. It’s been a wonderful month of T.R.A.N.S.I.T.I.O.N and Ritual. And I haven’t moved yet. I just know I’m going somewhere. And hopefully I’ll be waking up with a Mr. Happy beside me when I get there!!
    And why does it not surprise me that your name is Daniel?

  27. Carrie says:

    “To focus. Imagine all those times you were in a situation involving ‘The elephant in the room’. Well, that would simply never be the experience if radical honesty was in play.”

    Yes if all participants were radically honest but most times that’s not the case. I lived (and they still live) under that elephant in the living room and radical honesty only worked for ME. I got out, got away, made changes and got healthy; they did not and don’t want to (no radical honesty for them; they don’t want to do that) so they are still operating under that inisible elephant in the room scenario. Their choice not to be radically honest means we have no healthy place from which to connect.

    Indranibe is right; we can only change ourselves; the rest has to come from the other. One of the biggest turn offs I found with Dr. Phil (whom I admired at first because he didn’t waste people’s time and helped them see their programs) was when he wrote that if we cannot get the other person to change, we haven’t worked hard enough. That’s one of the Big Lies being sold to Americans these days; right up there with the “Universe wants you to have whatever you want” lie and the “you can be anything you want to be” lie and he “prosperity is God’s way of rewarding you for being right or good” lie. I could go on but you get the idea.

    All those Big Lies have the hidden thread in common that says We control things and if things go wrong, it is OUR fault. That completely ignores other powerful forces in our lives which throw us curves all the time. Yes, we can choose how we respond to those but the forces jerk us around despite our responses. These lies make it easy to blame the victims of any misfortune. You are poor…well you must not have worked hard enough or been open to prosperity enough or given to God enough…blah-blah-blah. It is an Ayn Rand mindset which has only served to marginalize the less fortunate and even blame them for their misfortune. It is cloaked in such enticing terms that people buy into it all the time. Radical honesty sounds like another such program which purports to help therapeutically but which may actually do more harm than good.

  28. CaraSusanetta CaraSusanetta says:

    Thanks Huffy, Yes! I’m noting it for reading tonight when I have more time (right now it’s midday here in the States, not evening as where you are). Can’t wait!

  29. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Cara – did you check out the link I posted? Think you’ll like it.

  30. Lyd says:

    This is one amazing ‘comment arena’.

    Indranibe: Read your reference to Blanton perhaps being a Scorpio? Not a chance. Mr. Blanton is a Virgo….September 4, 1940.

  31. Lizzy Huffy says:

    So Daniel dear (lovely name!) – do you mind if I ask you – were you a buddhist monk? Don’t feel you have to reply xxx

  32. CaraSusanetta CaraSusanetta says:

    Love you guys!

  33. Amanda Painter Amanda Painter says:

    hmmm – -katieVee: it sounds like your friend isn’t quite practicing “radical honesty” — i’m not sensing that there’s the follow-through from her, the staying with the person through hurt to get to a place of deeper intimacy. if that were the case, i suspect her hissy fits wouln’t happen — at least, not the drama, even if she expressed anger or resentment or hurt.

    sounds more like she;s really insecure, and relies on “being honest” in a way that always puts people down so she can artificially bolster herself up. but since her core self esteem isn’t really there, she can’t engage in a true exchange, or get to a deeper level of relating.

    i may be of base, but what do you think? if you compare, say, the comments by alexander and stormi in this thread, do the descriptions sound/feel remotely like what your friend does?

  34. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Huffy, thanks! I love that zen quote. It’s like a koan, a key to greater insight. It’s VERY scary though. And it still offends many people. Many buddhist centers are places where people find solace and safety within the nourishing “arms” of the buddha. It’s not a place we normally find such a violent image. But such is the power of radical honesty or “cutting awareness”, and it lies at the core of some special vajrayana practices, particularly the bardo thodol.
    Lots of love Huffy, ;)
    Daniel

  35. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Really liked your comments, Hugging. You’ve cleared out a lot of crap and guilt that was heaped on you…”I didn’t care what my Guru thought of me either. The whole idea of spiritual practice is to be radically honest with yourself, to evolve beyond confines, and to evolve without the dependence on your Guru” – in fact there’s a buddhist saying: “If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him” – meaning, put no false gods above your own head.

  36. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Huffy, “but we can then go beyond that, to a place where we’re not so attached to how people treat us”. I like this and there is a nugget of info there. Thank you for commenting about your mom too. I’ve been there, sometimes still there, and it feels good now. It feels good because I’m not attached to an outcome. I told her openly and flatly, “I don’t care anymore what you think of me anymore.” It didn’t come from a place of uncaring, rather of self affirmation. In a sense, my ability to say that to her has boosted that same ability with others. When I was younger, I cared a lot more because I was fearful of the input of others whom I didn’t have a close relationship with. Plus she infused that fear with an inherent distrust of others. It was another lock on another door. But if I smashed it open be rebelling at that time, where was I to go? How would I support myself? Roommates? I had no friends! And oh yeah, I was a monk. I supposed to obey and respect my elders, esp my mother, esp if she was well intentioned. My path was the unquestioning, the ego reducing, the sacred path of transforming negative experience into the pure awareness of the Buddha realm. Everything becomes the body, speech and mind manifestation of your Guru – and then through Guru/student practices, your own manifestation of pure awareness, which is not separate from the Guru. But then something happened along the way. I didn’t care what my Guru thought of me either. The whole idea of spiritual practice is to be radically honest with yourself, to evolve beyond confines, and to evolve without the dependence on your Guru. That doesn’t make me arrogant. That makes me free to think my own truth. Now when I look at my Guru and do my practice, I am free of expectations because I don’t care what anyone thinks of me. But at the same time, I feel even more aware of how my actions affect others, now that I’m on the other side of that protective shield of so many years of being by myself.

  37. Katie Vee says:

    What about people who subscribe to the (radical or not) honesty policy for everyone else but themselves? I had a friend who would say the most hurtful things to anyone and everyone–but usually those closest to her dealt the brunt of it–all in the name of “being honest.” But could not handle it when anyone dispensed of the same kind of honesty to her. It was a real show: Tears, screams, dramatic flouncing. Tiresome, really. How do you handle a person who can dish out honesty but can’t take it?

  38. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Just looked up this article to send to my brother, who’s going through a nasty divorce, and is in a pretty bad way. Re-reading it I understood what has been niggling me about Radical honesty. And that is that radical honesty is an important step in our development – but we can then go beyond that, to a place where we’re not so attached to how people treat us, which means that we won’t need the tool of radical honesty so badly. Though many will porbably not agree. Anyway – here’s the article fyi.
    http://www.leighb.com/ayyametta.htm

  39. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Though as i mentioned earlier, there are times when saying ‘enough’ is not enough – you just have to get the hell out.
    Good for you for being able to be so open in your admiration of that woman. She must have loved it!

  40. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Yes, you are right Alexander, “Maintaining one’s personal boundary intact, often requires a clear and decisive yes/no. This means we need not be sucked into abusive exchanges. Radical honesty is therefore first of all self liberating, it really is only secondarily about the other”. My relationship with my mother totally transformed when I finally had the courage to stand up to her and say ‘enough!’ It meant having to go through a whole round of shouting matches – but that was just the teething phase – till I got my boundaries put in place at last.

  41. Alexander De Witte says:

    I merely sleep a few hours and this thread is back to life!

    There seems to be some confusion about the honesty in view in Brad’s approach. Let’s take the phrase “Man you are one ugly mofo”. Provocative, distasteful, rude etc it can never be objectively accurate and therefore is simply not even a candidate for the descriptor ‘honesty’

    “Man your attitude is freakin ugly, you piss me off” is quite different. It remains abrasive rather than kind but it does express feelings that are radical. Those feelings are also honest IF that is what the person feels (Indranibe, of course, that doesn’t make the assertion correct!) We could argue all day about a gracious approach being ‘better’ or more effectual in coaxing changed behaviour but these things are mere conventions or personal preferences. There are myriad ways to go down blind alleys around personal values on this topic and lose the essence.

    People often have gaps in their personal boundary and lack awareness of this. They let their energy drain away or else give it away and end up suffering. We aren’t talking here about all those scenarios. This is about how responsible mature adults self regulate so as to avoid abusive pitfalls. Maintaining one’s personal boundary intact, often requires a clear and decisive yes/no. This means we need not be sucked into abusive exchanges. Radical honesty is therefore first of all self liberating, it really is only secondarily about the other.

    To focus. Imagine all those times you were in a situation involving ‘The elephant in the room’. Well, that would simply never be the experience if radical honesty was in play. Of course, it is complex and the stakes can be high but we simply cannot critique on the merely individual level here because that is part of the problem (the DEFINITION of honesty). We require a broad cultural and social shift on these matters to discern the difference and see a marked difference. In the meantime, courage is required for people who are versatile and adaptable/flexible, as well as aware, to begin to commit to a more straightforward communication style. Importantly here, communication as a carrier is what is important here, not a philosophical artefact. We are communicating on a simpler level here with each other and that may mean violating some social taboos in favour of the visceral. You see honesty is less truth-content and more a disclosure that blood is flowing through my veins.

    Social roles are ‘safe’ and nothing much changes when we enact them. The kind of thing in view may be akin not just to problems of an interpersonal nature we face all the time but basic ones like were the man who meets a woman he finds sexually attractive at a wedding and spends the whole evening agonizing about how he should approach or talk to her. He may know certain approaches to be socially risky or run the risk of being interpreted adversely. But he really finds her a huge turn on. “I REALLY want to have sex with you” may be deemed inappropriate after 15 minutes of conversation. But at the end of the night if he doesn’t have her number what is wrong with “You have been great company, so pretty too. But I have to say that I couldn’t help noticing that you have a gorgeous body”?

    The woman has not been reduced to a sex object. She has been complimented broadly, but the visceral feeling is out there now. I must admit to doing that recently and only with the gorgeous body exchange. Let me tell you, no offence was taken, neither did she rip my clothes off in the taxi. But she was deeply moved and clearly bolstered and I had freed my energy field through expression. There had been no outcome in view but it turned out to be a feel good win-win.

    The truth won’t set you free but radical honesty across the spectrum, might!

  42. pam says:

    I found then!

  43. Lizzy Huffy says:

    indranibe, was really stimulated by your post. You say “Logically, if the other person hated the status quo, you imagine they’d be doing something different. But clearly they’re comfortable with it” – but this often isn’t the case. I know for example, that my boss is under as much pressure, no, under more pressure than I am. She’s fighting tooth and nail to keep her company above water, under terrible financial pressure in these hellish times – and small companies are also screwed by government taxes in the country I live in, as is your average Joe. She’s always had to survive in that way – also in her private life. And it’s as if there’s a meeting beween us, of two neurotic victims/survivors. I know that once I let go of my mechanisms – I’ll let go of her and the job, or the job will transform into something else.
    “But whichever way you look at it, the actual power to change lies with you – and not their behaviour (which you are only ‘reacting’ to)” -yes, but we are also reacting to our reactions to the person! Our interactions with people show us where we’re stuck, and you’re right, it always comes back to us. Our relationships are a necessary mirror, that show us where we’re at.

  44. Hugging Scorpio says:

    btw my comment was tongue and cheek. All joking aside, I’m still one happy bugger…just had a quincunx my inverted mercury over a septuple retrofit trine my Mars, that’s all……

  45. awordedgewise awordedgewise says:

    BTW, my comment visavis “is that a lie” was intended as — Is a person/publisher who presents ideas to the masses with primary intent ‘to sell books’* lying?

    *(because a truth is that publishers are in the business of selling books.)

    This does not make anyone wrong. or a lier. It only gives me pause to consider intent – and as we’ve discussed here – to consider reaction to action. No, I will NOT jump on my father now for abuse he put me through as a child. Nope. And that’s no lie.

  46. indranibe says:

    “Radical honesty” Eric – wouldn’t it be more radically honest to say, “Gee I hate the fact that you’re paying me $10 an hour – so I’m going to go and find something else”? Also, if you can’t find something else, wouldn’t the radical thing be to ask “Why?”, as in, there are no other other jobs (eg, terrible economy – and do I have options?), or I’m afraid to look, or I need more skills – or skills in a different direction? I worry that in this programme of so-called “honesty”, the problem is (and subsequent power to change) is being given to the other person when most of the time, the change needs to come from us. Logically, if the other person hated the status quo, you imagine they’d be doing something different. But clearly they’re comfortable with it. So since you’re (and I mean a general “you”) the one who’s seen something they don’t like, perhaps you’re the one that needs to change something – including any further association with a person or group – or a way of doing something? That is, YOU become the ‘change-agent’? I’m working on the theory that it’s the individual’s self-determination that’s at the root of the problem (ie, you feel that someone is in the way of you wanting to achieve something) – so in that light, who’s the one with the issue? You or the person/thing that’s getting in your way? So the question is “Are you going to lead the change? Or wait for someone else to lead it?” Someone wrote that Blanton is a Scorpio – and isn’t that the eternal problem with Scorpios (and sometimes Taureans too – I’m one)? The attempt to control everything around them as opposed to actually take control? If someone’s shoes or looks – or behaviour – gives so much offence that you need to tell them so, then, is it them, or is it you? And what choices do you then have before you? You can stay, or you can go, or you can weigh up the situation – and in keeping with the theme of Venus retro – you can weigh up the situation and decide whether ther person means enough to you to maintain a relationship (what do you value more?), or whether you’ll be seeking some other solution. But whichever way you look at it, the actual power to change lies with you – and not their behaviour (which you are only ‘reacting’ to) – or indeed their hideous yellow shoes? If you really want someone to change that much, doesn’t that mean the situation’s not working for you anymore? And if that be the case, what do you want to do about it – what options lay before YOU?

  47. awordedgewise awordedgewise says:

    I can be just as “honest” by telling someone how beautiful they look in blue or by telling them I think their facial features are “ugly” (not that I’ve ever noticed that in anyone).

    Yes? Is finding the beautiful now WRONG? Please. I’m with Be and Huffy. Sounds from today’s blog that the author is Just Selling Books. Now tell me – is that a lie?

    xo!

  48. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Here’s a little radical honesty. Dating suck balls. Everything that is written about meeting someone is total bullshit. Be true to yourself, be in your skin, be a dude, be sensitive – it doesn’t matter a shit. Astrology is no help either. One says “Soul Connection”, the other says, “Retrograde! Stay indoors!” Meditation is a load of crap in this field too. Prayer? Well, who’s listening? I can have all the integrity in the world, who really cares? All that is out there is a festering pile of hormones that twitch and rush toward any desire and lust and endorphin rush. Great women go after assholes because it’s hot and sexy. Wear red on first dates, that’ll get you laid for sure man! Get a tattoo or five. If my meeting someone is compared to being hit by a truck while cycling on a highway in the opposite direction, well, I’m still here. Oh yeah, it supposed to happen when I least expect it…..right, I forgot about that one when I woke up with Mr. Happy this morning.

  49. Holiday Holiday says:

    Mandy, you definitely conveyed the ewwww feeling! But perhaps this one-step-further could help Carrie out with her aging parents. Carrie, when words wont do, just be there naked with the ‘rents. “Honesty! Mom and Dad.” Sometimes you can’t say a damn thing to anybody so why not give them something to actually talk about when you are gone? Please video tape this as a learning and discussion tool for the rest of us.

  50. Carrie says:

    Hmmmm. Radical honesty with my aging parents would accomplish what? My narcissistic mother wouldn’t change nor would my self-centered dad. So it might make ME feel better but it would not foster a more close or open relationship. Both of them would just use it against me at the first opportunity.

    Radical honesty with my younger brother doesn’t work either. He hates it whenever I do that and just brushes me off. It won’t make for a closer relationship there or open up a dialogue because he doesn’t want that.

    With my husband it HAS worked, we both seem to have an interest in having a very close relationship so we have been honest with each other and sometimes it hurts but it opens a dialogue that eventually brings us closer.

    With my kids it isn’t wise; they are still forming their personalities and saying certain things; while honest, has caused them to feel very inadequate or flawed instead of opening up dialogue. I think it is because of the parent-child relationship and how fraught it is with an imbalance of power.

    I always see new therapies or ideas as something to be cautious about because too often, they have the mindset that one-size-fits-all. Unfortunately our instant-gratification society likes that one size idea and it sells until people figure out it doesn’t work. Problem is, by then some damage may have been done which cannot be undone.

  51. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Hey Mandy, welcome back. Nice to see your comments again, and the chuckles they bring. Hope your move was good for you.

  52. bkoehler says:

    In a dream my young Gemini friend has aquired many gifts for many “friends” but they are not marked so it falls to me to help him get the right gift to the right friend. I know this dream was in regard to either this past eclipse of Sun and Moon squared by Neptune, or the Venus occult Sun and conjunct Chaos event. In both cases the “main” actor is Gemini and in both cases there is a lack of definition that requires discernment first and then disbursment. He is like a son to me so that seems like it would be the eclipse (Moon?) but then Venus could imply “gifts” too.

    The job becomes quite difficult because more gifts keep showing up as well as more designee’s. Furthermore, some of the gifts consist of many parts and the parts have to be sorted as to which gift they are a part of. He’s not helping much as he is unsure. The discernment part of the dream could be a Virgo act (Mars?) or possibly refer to Pallas-Athene the strategist. In both events, she is in Aries very near Uranus, essentially conjunct him. With the Sun-Moon conjunction she sextiles them (easy energy), but in both cases, her comrade Uranus is opposite Isis in Libra (many pieces; partners) and square Pluto. In the case of the Sun-Venus event, the Moon is conjunct Pluto so square Pallas-Uranus (challenging energy). This means that in both events the Moon aspects Pallas-Athene as well as Isis.

    The young Gemini is like a son to me but he is making it more and more difficult to help him, due to the increasing number of gifts he is accumulating. Jupiter (increase) is conjunct Mercury (and Hermes) in Taurus in the Eclipse event and Jupiter is the point planet in a yod with Saturn (Libra) sextile the Galactic Center (Sagittarius) in the Occult event. I am wondering if the Eclipse represents the beginning (conjunction) of practical, tangible communication and thought, while the yod with Saturn and GC in the Occultation is supplying Jupiter with discernment as well as Universal guidance. Opposite Jupiter in this yod is Juno (relatedness, partners) in Scorpio (shared resources).

    There is a growing audience (a “party”) in my dream and they are curious. Some members of the audience are recipients of a gift, so there is “growing awareness” or consciousness that could start as the Sun (consciousness) eclipsed by Moon and then followed by Sun occulted by Venus.

    Another observation regarding these events is that in both cases Uranus (and therefore Pallas-Athene the strategist) are trine the north node and sextile the south node. The nodes are in Gemini and Sagittarius so it is a transitional period in development. Uranus is in Aries so cardinal energy so is facilitating the transition by pushing and demanding.

    One last note is that Mars in Virgo (possibly determined to sort it all out) is part of a Grand Earth Trine in both charts, with Pluto in Capricorn and Vesta in Taurus. In the 2nd event, when Venus occults the Sun, the Moon conjuncts (occults) Pluto and with her greater orb of influence for aspects, she facilitates the grand trine connection even though Pluto’s degree is 8 degrees behind that of Mars and Vesta. I’m wondering if this could mean that “in the beginning”, when the gifts start coming in, Mars, with Pluto and Vesta can handle the sorting, but later when the gifts become complex and increase in number, the Moon (The People, feelings, home, family) facilitates, increases or stretches the grand trine’s “flow” of energy to complete the job. Thought it might be useful to share these thoughts and maybe encourage yours regarding the complex astrology we are in the midst of.
    be

  53. MandyM MandyM says:

    I took this guy’s workshop many years ago. Personally, I’m all for his theory, but what else would a Scorpio want except complete honesty (the difficulty is in finding others who work on this level). It is truly an amazing experience to be able to slow down the communication/emotional process of interaction, with safe guidelines, while allowing yourself and other(s) to express what is absolutely true for you – no matter how petty or ugly it seems. And no, it’s not a free for all, integrity is most important. It would be expected that the common goal is to heal, not wound.
    As for the man himself, he totally creeped me out. He was marketing a nudist group at the time, nude therapy where everyone could be totally, radically honest for all to see. Not that this wouldn’t be helpful to some if done with integrity, but he was making the hair on the back of my neck stand up every time he talked about it.

  54. wings says:

    Alexander
    I am so happy you saw my message. You rock! Across the ethers many blessings to you…

  55. Alexander De Witte says:

    Yo wings! So very pleased for you. I remember your posts on the thread and your deeply felt frustration at those blocks. It was easy to ‘see’ you. There was a beauty in your straightfowardness. Your passion and desire to have rewarding impact upon your world dripped off your post. It is no surprise really that the cosmos heard your cry and replied via my response. You only needed the one person to reply, even though it was a desolate trek for you at the time! Here’s hoping your mission touches others bountifully, now that your flow has resumed. Thank you for seeking me out and affirming my contribution. That is a great encouragement to me about my ongoing direction.

    I wish you success upon success and all the very best with your creative endeavours.

  56. CaraSusanetta CaraSusanetta says:

    This has been a very rewarding conversation from all sides, in my opinion. I am honestly feeling we are hitting some really REAL stuff in this group that ín my experience (limited, granted) is not often seen outside the best of therapeutic environments. I’m also grateful to Dr. Jan and to PW for sponsoring her column. Her contributions and Alex’s and Eric’s manifesto on what astrology could be…I’m very encouraged for all of us having this forum.
    I’ve been in bad therapy, and now have found a good situation, and the difference is astonishing! The idea of braving my own fears about honesty and integrity and just taking the lumps and learning experiences as they come, which would normally cause me to put shields up is strangely appealing these days…

  57. Lizzy Huffy says:

    “One thing to remember is that you’re doing this for your own sake and for the sake of integrity, not to “help” the other person. That boss making extra profit because you buy gas on their behalf knows exactly what they’re doing and is unlikely to change, though you may get treated differently merely for not being afraid”. This isn’t entirely true, Eric. I have had many many battles with my boss over the last couple of years, telling her exactly what I think of her and her job, and that I won’t take it any more – and she has continued to behave in exactly the same way – like a mad woman, or deaf and blind. There’s only one thing that works with her – and that’s the fear of my going. In fact – I’ve been pushed so far this last couple of months (and it’s not her fault this time, though it was before), and she knows that I’m ready to leave as soon as I can, and her behaviour towards me has changed – she’s giving me a lot more help on the job. Sometimes it’s not about words, there’s a power struggle going on beneath the language, on a silent, energetic level.

  58. wings says:

    Alexander de Witte
    I have been looking for you. I wanted to THANK you for a post last fall which basically changed my life. I had a Mars square Saturn in my natal and had spent years wrestling with the career difficulties associated with that. You were the only one who took the time to reply to me. And I wanted you to know what a huge impact it had. First I was reassured that someone cared. You had mentioned community and structure after studying your post, those words unlocked a block. I went from a fish swimming in a stagnant pond alone to one who has found the blue sea. As you suggested, I focused on how to apply Saturn to build structure and now have some much needed mates in the form of clients. I wanted you to know your post touched me, and my life in a big way and I am grateful.

  59. marymack says:

    yes! and once again I’m happy I’ve stopped here … for such a long while I’d entertained an inner rage about the lack of communication that was tolerated in the family, but really, now that I read on here, it was not just that. It was so much more. I wanted truth. I wanted to know who these people were … but really, I suppose now I wanted them to know me. All these years I’ve been looking and while I appreciate the therapist and that process, I’ve wanted so much more. Thank you, Stormi. Where can I sign up for deep dialog and critical listening. I need/want to go to there.
    m.

  60. Eric Francis Eric Francis says:

    Radical Honesty is life as therapy. It’s designed for outside the container of the counseling room. Within the counseling room, it should be a given, even though most therapy is — borrowing the term of art from Fritz Perls (who among others trained Blanton) bullshit.

    It seems like a bigger deal than it is. Once you start living with basic honesty as your MO, it’s not really possible to go back, no more than you would choose to be constipated. As I understand the method, it’s most essential in your most important relationships (I don’t quite get telling the co-worker he or she is ugly; who cares). As I’ve heard Brad explain it, it’s about your parents, your partner, your boss — the relationships where the bullshit is the most detrimental and the most dangerous.

    The point is not that you hate their crusty yellow shoes, but rather how their actions impact your life, and how yours impact theirs. For example, “I resent you for paying me $10 an hour, making me drive all over the county and not paying for my gas.”

    One thing to remember is that you’re doing this for your own sake and for the sake of integrity, not to “help” the other person. That boss making extra profit because you buy gas on their behalf knows exactly what they’re doing and is unlikely to change, though you may get treated differently merely for not being afraid.

    This is the basic level of radical honesty. We all know a lot of stories of people who have not stood up for the truth and suffered for it, those who did whose lives were better and those who paid the price. It’s a few long steps from radical honesty to grace, but you don’t get to the destination without passing through the starting point.

    Then there are more important levels of the process, though they start with the personal level. Just as an exercise, consider how much you don’t hear about in the news because newscasters are scared, fearful of their jobs, fearful of whoever might do whatever — and as a result, millions of people are exposed to plutonium unnecessarily.

    However you cannot expect someone else to tell the truth if you will not. You certainly cannot expect them to tell the truth about something huge if you won’t stand up for something basic.

    So — this is not for counseling room. This is what you say to your friend who’s about to get in the car drunk or your boss who is a liar or to Rachel Maddow when she says Gardasil is safe and has Merck as a sponsor.

  61. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Great stuff, Alexander! Have found today’s blog and comments so very inspiring – much food for thought here.
    Good for you, Amanda.

  62. Alexander De Witte says:

    A final summation: We don’t all get to be trained provacteurs, neither shall we in practice master any concept of radical honesty thoroughly and be able to change the world with it any time soon. So my last observation is not essentially psychological in character, more philosophical. We do not bring our true self to any laboratory experiment. Usually, when folk bring a sense of self to the table in varieties of interpersonal exchange, they bring the perception of who they are to the fray.. not who they deeply are.

    Welive in a world where each of us in some sense needs to be a construct in order to fit into prescribed social roles. You can even take the role of heretic/deviant if you like.. as long as you do it in the prescribed way the world will have a ready-made, time-honoured ritual to assimilate it. All the more radical approaches to the social contract are in effect asking the philosophical/theological question about the nature of full humanity.

    If I bring my self-concept to the table, convinced that is really who I am then I will NEVER change deeply, merely tweak my self-construct via jostling and attrition. There is something about sharing on a gut level that forms part of our deeper humanity. When others have space to penetrate our core myths then we can hope to transcend prisons of self-concept and express the ineffable within us. It is not possible to be fully human without others. It is likewise beyond us to be fully human WITH others who are not FULLY present.

    This is not therefore so much about therapy modalities or social game strategies but the essence of personhood. That is what we are looking at and that is where most of us are so very shut down and numbed out. The real difference between awareness and unawareness is not whether knowledge is possessed or not, or understanding/wisdom but the capacity to change direction in an instant, based upon new things coming to light. It is about versatility and flexibility rather than a bunch of scripts that have rendered us charmingly robotic.

    This is the Taoist message in a nutshell. The goal is for each of us to be fully present.. first for ourselves and then for others.

  63. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Stormi, “it’s a ceremonial intention towards critical consciousness and authentic communication, not a quick fix therapy” – the friend I mentioned, who was so honest with me, does the same work you do – and that’s why he was able to do tell me certain things with such grace and kindness. And in fact, it was a really therapeutic experience for me.

  64. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Yes, Stormi and Alexander! Thanks for an amazing expansion so well written.

    Huffy, love the song!!

  65. Amanda Painter Amanda Painter says:

    stormi & alexander:

    thanks especially for your comments and expansions (and all the comments here). it’s tricky to quickly summarize a person’s philosophy based on limited info (i have not read blanton’s book, but have read about his technique & listened to eric), and was concerned about the balance between being concise versus misrepresenting the technique.

    i can see how some of his perspective could be very valuable in the container of an ongoing counseling relationship; but yes, to just trot it out randomly does not seem very “mindful” (to put it kindly).

    if you go to the links, as stormi did, you can get a little more sense of how he uses radical honesty. and mainly, the point was to get people thinking and talking. the area of “white” lies is so very, very gray, isn’t it?

  66. Alexander De Witte says:

    *willingness* not unwillingness!

  67. Alexander De Witte says:

    Thank you, Cara!

    Everybody has had the experience at some point, no doubt, of the unempathic ‘fixer’ who is maybe projecting or dramatizing, or perhaps making some identity capital. Even such folk who are unwittingly maybe acting out and not seeing the whole picture can be very helpful to us if they haven’t descended to relentless pain-in-the-ass status! Of course, the problem with such engagement is NOT what is said, or even HOW it is said, but the fact it does not come from a place of awareness (or, in psychological parlance ‘observing ego’). People failing to exercise awareness in interaction is always the real problem – as with relentless pedlars of textbook empathy, who deceive themselves that anything less is dereliction of duty, all the while that they may have fallen into the trap of making the other experience warm, fuzzy feelings as they effectively collude with them in their stuckness and unwillingness to do anything other than change. It is often a requirement NOT to give empathy, but instead *lovingly* denude the client of all their maladaptive defences – so they can actually see a persistent blindspot and resolve to shift deep patterns.

    This is the Blanton caveat really.. that honesty with no awareness is something that can harm as well as liberate. But overall, it seems clear, there is more to be said for people calling it as they experience it at core, than dressing everything up so as to be discreet.. but being essentially ineffectual with one’s significant community. In some senses, comedians get the best location for shifting the sacred taboos and saying the things that everybody secretly sees but dare not utter.

    And what does that engender, other than laughter? Respect!

  68. stormilarue stormilarue says:

    as someone who studies and practices critical deep dialogue and active listening, i question blanton’s wanton provocation of “real dialogue”. in my experience, he is correct about being offended and how it can take us to a different space. BUT – i do not believe it is always a matter of “get over it”. without taking into account the depth of the wounds for each of us and why we lie to ourselves and others in the first place, there may be only superficial healing. perhaps it just depends on the kinds of lies we’re talking about, those above the iceberg, or those deeper under.

    in the kind of dialogues i’ve been present with it is absolutely a process, impicitly and explicitly. when sitting down with a purposeful group the acknowledgement that we will be offended is absolute, but so is the sacred intention of a safe space created with the specific intent to temporarily displace our personal tacit infrastructures (that keep us bound to our opinions/judgments/’lies’) and the integrity to reach beyond the culture wars/internalized programming/generational wounds so that new/shared meaning emerges from the experience. it’s a ceremonial intention towards critical consciousness and authentic communication, not a quick fix therapy.

    IMHO, “real” dialogue and communication is a reflective action that takes the time to explore and safely peel back the layers of the onion mutually to work through the idea that “i know that you believe you understand what you think i said, but i’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what i meant” (robert mcclosky) and keep the dialogue going for radical knowing.

  69. CaraSusanetta CaraSusanetta says:

    For a person with water “apparently” missing in the chart (except generational Pluto in my 12th), I have to say these Neptune thingies hit me rather hard (not that it’s a bad thing).
    I feel the shaking too, Lune. And the dreams, oy, so much core material and it slips by so fast. I actually had one dream CONTINUE from yesterday night to last night. To my knowledge that’s not happened before…
    Alexander, thanks for the perspective. I would say there is a middle ground between passivity and being obnoxiously provocative that can be very healing if done skillfully.

  70. Lyd says:

    Geez, Eric, interesting the short summary you provided for Blanton’s radical honesty. Had a moment of ‘park to overdrive’. Hmmm, I wonder what that says about me. I did go to the link provided, read, and found the last entry:

    Q: Is there one central point that you would like people to know about Radical Honesty?

    A: I think the focus of what I have to say is not so much some moral taboo against lying as it is that I am in favor of people having fun in their lives, and having joyful, playful lives, serving each other. I’m not morally condoning telling the truth or saying that it’s immoral to lie. I’m just talking about a pragmatic thing. If you go out and tell each other the truth you’ll be happier. You’re better nurtured in a world in which you’re telling the truth than you are in a world in which you’re cowering, hiding and lying.

    We all communicate what we perceive is our truth based on what? That’s for each of us to answer based on our individual perspective. And how we do that is based on what? Personally, I have always “thought” it is the heart that listens and any action taken is from that place.

    If anything, this article perhaps accomplished it’s objective. Thinking larger, kinder; where we need to go to live in our own truth, without harm to ourselves or others.

    However, based on what was initially provided regarding Blanton, I would ‘ditto’ the ‘asshole’.

    Have enjoyed thoroughly, everyone’s contribution.

  71. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Thanks dear Hugging! Your comments on my dream are really helpful. Your dream is so beautiful.
    “If I can be constructive by being honest however severe, then go for it. If not, I will perpetuate pain”. This is so true – I went through something similar with my mother to what you’re going through with your parents, some years ago. We had some terrible battles during that time – but my relationship with her is now so honest and loving. And she recently told me that she trusted me deeply, because she knew I always told her the truth. That’s when I realised how far I had come.
    Sounds like you’re in an amazing space right now. Your dream and also the last one kept bringing to mind one of my favourite Peter Gabriel songs – The Blood of Eden
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXtr-iTqMEE.

  72. Hugging Scorpio says:

    Huffy, great dream woman! Nice! The werewolf is you though, as is the woman you feel hate for. This is exemplified in your dream experience. Do you agree?

    I had a dream last night where I was walking at night and was watching a simultaneous Eclipse of the Sun/Moon (it was both a lunar and solar at the same time) and a Venus Eclipse right beside it. My mom was in her apt watching it but I said, no, I’m gonna watch it alone out here.

    I have been pretty honest with my mom (and dad recently too). I spoke about how I was shut down and spoken for. I went into details about the psychology about this esp in me as a man. Sometimes I was yelling it out! It was essential for growth and release. There is a fine line between honesty and blame and I’ve been cautioned by my healer to be aware of that. Fundamentally I am responsible for my own healing and the release of baggage, and to be active in not allowing a repetition of those bad patterns. If I can be constructive by being honest however severe, then go for it. If not, I will perpetuate pain.

  73. Patty says:

    One of things i noticed over the years was that whenever I mentioned to an African American co-worker that I thought someone was homely, or that a certain baby was not very attractive, the co-worker would get extremely angry. I mean – AGITATED! I think I only said it two or three times over 20 years or so, but the result was the same each time. Apparently, they had been told that about themselves! The worst I ever heard was from a male co-worker who was ill with leukemia, and struggling with the relationship he never had with his father. His father was dark-skinned, and so was his mother, but my co-worker was light skinned – a product of past history. His father beat him senseless, over and over, because he was too white, too stupid (he wasn’t). We were sexual harrassment investigators together, so we spent many hours on the road in discussion. I hope I brought some peace to him, because he seemed to get a lot out of our talks. He died a few years ago. What it revealed to me was that almost everyone who had a sexual harrassment complaint had been violated as a child. I developed a knack for getting these employees to reach back to the culprit. Where most of us can just say “knock it off” to a jerk or jerkess, they don’t seem to know how to do that. There are incidents that rise more to the level of criminal activity. Temporary employees were often victims of real harrassment because their supervisors knew they wouldn’t complain if they wanted to keep their jobs. The most emotional (for me) case was where I was talking to a young girl and her young acting supervisor (male). The perp in her case was a supervisor at another facility. They both started to cry as they recounted prior experiences. I gave them information to contact counseling services. I told them that I believed that holding onto their feelings could lead to illness later in life and urged them not to delay getting counseling. I lost touch with the girl, but soon after that I met the young supervisor and he seemed very happy and self-assured. We all have forks in the road where we can help someone see the truth. I like the comment, “Don’t believe everything you think.”

  74. Kelly says:

    Several months ago, Eric, you wrote a post on white lies which made me sit up and listen.
    And ever since, I have been running a self test to gauge under which circumstances I’d be inclined to tell a white lie. It’s an interesting exercise because I am more inclined to be silent and think about a response then to just incessantly chat. I also tend to pick up on other peoples white lies..which has disturbed me because it happens a lot.
    Your post today has renewed my motivation to continue with what I had begun. There’s a difference in how I value myself when I don’t let myself down by resorting to any measure of a white lie.

  75. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Great comments Gwind! (weren’t there before I posted,a bit Bermuda triangle-ish). Good for you for realising this “Rather than listening to what she really needed, I tried to fix the situation. It would have been far more truthful to just let what she was telling me sink in, do nothing, and listen with an open heart. I guess being vulnerable enough to do nothing was too much for me at that time”. Some months ago, a friend of mine had the courage and honesty to point out to me the words you have just said. It was painful to hear, and it made me realise that I did it all too often (trying to ‘fix’ people, rather than listen with an open heart, as you say). But his words made me see so much about myself, and I was touched that he was able to be so honest – now *that’s* what I call speaking from the heart.

  76. indranibe says:

    (sorry – typo on the last line: “fun and silliness are pretty damn healthy things too!” xx)

  77. indranibe says:

    Haha! Funny that you mention that the eclipse left us embracing out “dark inner twin” – it’s been exactly the opposite for me – I’ve been embracing my “light inner-twin”. And high time! Doesn’t mean the “dark” work’s over – dealing with anger and frustration are daily exercises, but regular attendance to the “dark side” means that the light-side hasn’t got much press lately. But here’s the thing – once you move into the “abyss” of your soul and psyche, “lightness” is so much more meaningful. “Fun” becomes a truly wonderful thing, and “silliness” – why silliness, is worth its weight in gold! But I reckon only people who’ve walked the “dark path” at some point in their lives will tell you that. So I’ll be makin’ hay while the sun doth shine (or rather, remembering that an eclipse is nature’s own “circuit breaker”), and that while plumbing the depths is both necessary and cleansing, fun is a pretty and silliness are pretty damn healthy things too!

    :D

  78. Eric Francis Eric Francis says:

    Here is a clue. Often when people say, “I thought…” you can be sure that they did NOT think.

  79. Lizzy Huffy says:

    “He notes that when you are hurt or offended – and speak your resentment out loud, specifically addressing what was actually said or done – you get real dialogue going”. This is true, but it can only be done properly when the person is speaking straight from the heart – and that’s a real skill.

  80. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Picking up on what Alexander said, my “This is wonderful – pushing us to go further in our quest to be authentic, to have the courage to go further in being ourselves” referred to the intent behind this morning’s blog, rather than Blanton’s method, which is indeed, in my opinion, highly questionable. One of the buddhist precepts is ‘Right speech'(which I try to adhere to) – which covers every single area of interaction with others, from being dishonest and insincere, to being unkind. No time to go into this more…

  81. gwind gwind says:

    I agree that dishonesty takes up a lot of energy. That is obvious and prevalent in our culture. The problem we have as individuals is that we actually believe our projections. I like playing around with the statement: “Don’t believe everything you think.”

    We often disown our thoughts rather than just letting them “be” with us. Spouting off opinions isn’t necessarily being honest, for they are projections. Being real with what is actually happening inside of us, including our reactions, seems to be the core of this idea. I am amused in every day life when people share their unsolicited thoughts thinking it is appropriate. I wonder what is really underneath what they are saying out loud. We are like icebergs floating around with only a fragment revealing itself.

    I caught myself doing this on Saturday. I gave my unsolicited opinion to someone that was looking for some other response from me. Rather than listening to what she really needed, I tried to fix the situation. It would have been far more truthful to just let what she was telling me sink in, do nothing, and listen with an open heart. I guess being vulnerable enough to do nothing was too much for me at that time.

  82. Lunesoleil says:

    Everything depends on or focuses this configuration in our map there is the chalenge of integrity. It must be recognized with this triple square, moon, Sun and then mercury square Neptune there are leaks.
    In France in Nancy and region of Strasbourg to the East of the France there was strong flooding up to 2 metres of water (Neptune) is the culprit… It is also an increase in psychic phenomena, yesterday morning I have had strange sensation, es – that there was a link with flooding? It is enough to be responsive to the magnetic field of planets to also feel shaking on an energy plan…

    Thank you Planet Waves :)

  83. pam says:

    Alexander – aware engagement is different from casual honesty that can be a sort of sounding off?

    We have 3 goslings at the moment raised in an incubator, I bought them at a fair because I couldn’t bear them being on the table some time. They lack a Mum. Part of provocation is accompaniment too – building strength, security, love, showing the way. Or being strong enough to find you have feet to stand on. I try to contact them, I bundle them under my ‘wings’ in the evening and they preen my hair, otherwise they are happy in the trees in the orchard and dabbling in the small pond there is there or in the mud. Without claws or hooves or teeth or accompaniment they can only flee. It depends who you are and how you are ‘halted’ or blocked.

    Lovely proverb.
    An honest enemy is almost as good as a friend
    All that is gold does not glitter…

  84. pam says:

    Michelle said it really well the other day with her list of 6 – it’s the ways you’ve hurt others that haunts you, or you regret.

  85. Alexander De Witte says:

    Ok Holiday (and all others of similar response to BB) your repugnance demonstrates the minefield we are in once we get summaries of ‘schools of thought’ minus their deeper groundings. Of course, that is necessarily what you will get on a broadly eclectic blog; one which must synthesise an array of quite complex thought strands. Something is always lost to the original richness of the scheme. Assholing Brad won’t solve this conundrum but may just cut off the key insight being reached for.

    I’d bring Frank Farrelly to bear on this debate, actually. He developed a therapy named Provocative Therapy upon a thorough foundation, subsequent to years of clinical case experience as a psychoanalyst then client-centred Rogerian, followed by dabbling with Blantonesque exchanges with some of the most resistive patients. Remember, Blanton is addressing a cultural epidemic of interpersonal incongruence, where Farrelly is addressing such in the context where the result has been a breakdown in mental health – in fact, Farrelly got some interesting outrage responses. Interesting because these were far more pronounced from certain colleagues far more than any recipient of the therapy (in fact many clients begged/demanded a sober assessment, often after years of therapists following their ‘professional’ scripts).

    Now, I can’t elaborate much, due to space considerations. But the underlying point noted in the Provocative Therapy is that the approach formalised as a system allows a consistent engagement with the client, based upon taking the client’s shadow self off them. A bit like a Devil’s Advocate, the point is that when the client gets some deep honesty instead of ‘humble deference’ (which is after all about therapist values, or else the fear of not being liked/accepted) it becomes possible for them to see real change as a prospect. They begin to believe in their latent potentials rather than deficits and this has a strong galvanizing effect. It’s a bit like saying that traditional views of not upsetting are dishonest! Which is tantamount to acknowledging that these approaches offer very low positive expectation to the recipient of the message like “I expect you to fail”. These messages are accurately translated by the client and so they do indeed fail. Now, if instead the messenger verbalizes something like “Yeah, well we’ve been here countless times have we not and you always trot out the same drivel about why you can’t take responsibility for your life.. so yes, I fully expect you to fail” this is a form of honest assessment that is similarly a technique.. one which encourages the client to step up and defend their possibilities rather than their entrapped failing self. The therapist adopts the client’s shadow self and mirrors it so that a) the client sees their true condition and b) the client is roused to get angry (seemingly at the therapist but ultimately at their own refusals to change) and in the final analysis, to find strong determination to deal!

    Blanton is talking generically about interactions within the prevalent cultural milieu. The issues are the same however. This isn’t about destroying people, it isn’t about sadism. It is partially about communicators owning and expressing their feelings (rather than holding back on social niceties grounds) in a way that helps both parties to be congruent and partially about acknowledging that such dishonesty about what others need to hear is robbing THEM of one of life’s most precious resources.. the human mirror.

    I’d finish with an Old Testament proverb here. One that I especially treasure and that sums up well: Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.

  86. P. Sophia P. Sophia says:

    PW, all, loving the insightful writing pieces over the last few days.   I have wanted to comment on every/all with appreciation, but finding it challenging as the influence(s) you speak about here are so real, and imminently everything is so sped up for me.  

    Experiencing emence feelings of infinite connections/ links occurring both personally and collectively…great waves of information, creativity coming in and washing over me.  And with others – depth and speed, so keeping up and processing at normal speed proving challenging.

    Sense of increased openness and interesting honesty as you mentioned too…So I get your warning about integrity.    But, still i am going with this wild, new, organic energy, it feels different yes, but also incredibly good for me.  This is an interesting time I believe, and as you mention surreal, others I am encountering are also expressing this increased openness and synapse like connectivity.

    Is this the fuzzy dreamtime of Neptune you’re describing here?    Is anyone else experiencing any similar influences? 

    Huffy, authentic I like it, yes!  And, wow, incredible dream…

  87. bkoehler says:

    I’m with you Holiday, what an asshole.
    be

  88. pam says:

    Of course Brad Blanton may be banking on the fact that most people see lovely things in others and if not small releases are preferable to volcanoes?

  89. pam says:

    Of course it is Jung too – individuate as quickly as you can so that you do the least damage around you.

  90. pam says:

    ps. what motivation?

  91. pam says:

    There might be ways and ways of being truthful.

    I was on a train aged 19 and a very handsome guy got into my carriage. After a while we talked. He said the reason he got into the carriage was that such an ugly woman had to be interesting. I’m not sure it got me any further than I already knew. My sculpteur friend (all the way from school) is always scornful. hah! you have bones!

    Another guy another time, saw some guy talking to me on a rock in the sea and waded out. it is unkind to pursue her if she doesn’t want. Another guy (who was 23 and already over his masculine ego stuff) journeyed with me through a dark valley to an end and 3x told me a dream he had had. Yes but why were you so surprised I said. Because I loved her he said.
    And another man. when you come up in conversation the people I talk to say how beautiful you are, how you have something: every one.

    Take your pick!

    Probably there are different schools of thought, I’m more comfortable with aiming to hear what is ‘true’ like glass rings true when it isn’t cracked, better learn only to do that which you have to do and which cannot be done any other way.

    There is also a place for letting things find their own way, play themselves out.

    I thought the last sherlock holmes movie (Guy Ritchie) was worth seeing just for Watson stepping out onto the balcony and Holmes’ immediate action (without his normal mentalising), and how peaceful his face was in the frames that followed.

  92. Holiday Holiday says:

    Not sure telling somebody they are ugly, or stupid, or whatever other “honesty” you want to lay on them is easily gotten over. Were your parents, teachers, just being honest when you were a kid and told you these things? There’s a lack of discernment in this advice and I’m thinking Brad Blanton is more an asshole than a truth guru. I assume he’ll get over that assessment.

  93. Lizzy Huffy says:

    Thank you! This is wonderful – pushing us to go further in our quest to be authentic, to have the courage to go further in being ourselves. Extraordinary dream in the early hours of this morning. At a certain point a werewolf appeared, I was with a young man (unknown) and we shut ourselves away in a room to get away from it. The young man then opened the door and went outside to protect me from this werewolf, closing the door behind him. But I opened the door and held up this silver sphere I wear round my neck (in real life it’s a little silver heart), and the werewolf backed away and went off. Yesterday I really made myself open up to the fury and hate I have been feeling towards the woman I work for and my whole work situation. Am trying to go beyond the external situation and really open to my feelings, as well as general feelings of emotional pain. Feels like I was really confronting that, in order to heal it in this dream. The image of the werewolf has never been entirely frightening for me, it has always brought up compassion as well as fear, calling to mind the immense grief, pain and loneliness a person carries inside them (and who can forget An American werewolf in London!). Have a good day everyone. Aaaaoooooo!

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