Self-mastery is self-motivated

Self-mastery is self-induced.

BOOK REVIEWIn the Realm of the Hungry Ghosts, Close Encounters with Addiction, by Gabor Mate, M.D.:  Beginning at page 400, Dr. Mate writes that “Until a person is willing to take on the task of self-mastery, no one else will induce him to do so. “There are no techniques that will motivate people or make them autonomous,” psychologist Edward Deci has written. “Motivation must come from within, not from techniques. It comes from their deciding they are to take responsibility for managing themselves.””

A yogi must initiate himself

When I took Kundalini yoga teacher training I learned that a yogi must initiate himself. So I initiated myself as a yogi and dropped out of Kundalini yoga teacher training because it was too expensive and too steeped in the Sikh religion. I felt foolish paying thousands of dollars to learn a religion that I had no interest in. I need another religion like I need another hole in my head. From now on, if I need religion or yoga, I will practice it on my own for free. No more expensive classes for me. When I need a fresh infusion of God’s perfection I will humbly open my heart and soul to pure grace.

sacramental grace vs pure grace
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Purity and impurity belong to oneself. No one else can purify another. -Buddha

Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled. –Titus 1:15 KJV

Resentment is soul suicide

I want to awaken you to your genuine possibilities, but am I really on the path to fulfilling my own? I am an old man learning to integrate and accept the hurt that my parents could not love me unselfishly. My infantile ego complains about the way I needed to be loved. As a result, I have never really learned to accept myself. It is now time for me to love, forgive, and rise above all of that. Resentment is soul suicide. Often my childish behaviors and immature emotional patterns visually invites people around me to take on the role of stern parent.

self-mastery  hungry ghosts drug addictions
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God please help me to differentiate

Dr. Mate points out that I lack differentiation. I do not have the capacity to maintain emotional separateness from others. I absorb and take personally the emotional states of other people. My diminished capacity for self-regulation leaves me easily overwhelmed by my automatic emotional mechanisms. I blurt out whatever comes to my mind when I could be making friends. I am too prone to experience myself as demeaned and abandoned by authority figures and caregivers. I react instinctively to the least tension or condescension from caregivers. After reading his book, I feel like I have been a patient of Dr. Mate. The good doctor has put me back on the track to self-mastery and redemption.

Photo credit: Galen Crout/Unsplash

By Dean McAdams

Born a poor peckerwood in a Tujunga holler, Dean overeducated himself beyond his social station to end up a retired paralegal in the coastal paradise of West L.A.