Kathleen assisted me the other day to tease out a behavior pattern that seemed to underlie both a medical condition I have and general irritability.
But, before I turn to that, I need to say that what our discussion produced was what I’d like to call “pattern mapping,” which I’ll get to in a minute.
The circumstances that were before us were two: One, I had a disagreement with a friend that left me feeling irritated. It showed that I had unprocessed anger and irritability. (I thought it was gone.)
The second factor was a touch of arthritis that I have in my left kneecap. It flares up after ten or fifteen minutes of walking and I start to limp and then may hobble. The worsening of it led to a remarkable discussion of what lay contextually underneath it.
Both elements were in our awareness and contributed to my dis-ease.
The pattern mapping began with her request that I look at what lay below the medical condition.
When I did, what I saw was that I was repeating to myself over time “I can’t stand it” or “I can’t bear it.” Of course my knee cap is what enables me to stand and bear my weight.
What could I not stand or bear?
The matter went right back to the womb. I could hear myself listening to my parents fight.
I said to myself, I don’t want to go out there. I can’t stand it. I can’t bear it.
All through my life, from age seven to age fourteen, my parents fought. My Dad was often threatening or violent. I couldn’t stand it. I couldn’t bear it.
I identified enough of the pattern’s origins to experience a partial easing. But some still remained, which I experienced as a tensing of my neck muscles.
We took it further and that’s where “pattern mapping” arose. Kathleen encouraged me to look for a complex of emotions or false grids that supported the pattern.
The words just kept falling out of my mouth. I arranged the notions in a circle, but I began to see relationships among them.
Finally a pattern jumped out at me and that became the “pattern map.”
To anyone unfamiliar with my work, I aim for transparency. So what you read here is about as transparent as I can be. It isn’t always comfortable to be this visible, but it’s the work.
I’m showing you the emotional map of my vasana’s eruption, my triggering and where it leads. In other words, I’m describing how I trigger myself when I experience either disappointment, impatience, or frustration.
In all my writing on the subject of vasanas (or core issues) I’d never thought of mapping one. Looking back, it seems an obvious thing to do.
I hope that by sharing my own pattern, others may use the device to help unconceal their own patterns and be free of them.
Here it is:
(To be continued tomorrow.)