WORD'S WORTH“So many people get judged when they refuse to put their pain away. They get judged for showing it, for speaking it, for insisting on sharing their memories of abuse with those they know. I am not talking about those overwhelming strangers with their stuff—I am talking about legitimate sharings with those they are connected with in daily life. All too often, they are fed one repressive message or another: “Don’t look back,” “What’s done is done,” “Don’t be a victim,” “Your feelings are an illusion,” “Be strong.” What is ironic about this is that those who insist on embodying and expressing their feelings are actually the courageous ones—unwilling and unable to live a false life. Their stuff is breaking through their defenses because they are tired of carrying the weight of buried truths. They want a healthier and more authentic life. Those who seek to shame their revealings are actually less courageous, turning to repressive mantras in an effort to bypass their own unresolved feelings and memories. If they can shut others down, they can remain shut down themselves. But shut down doesn’t take us anywhere good. If we don’t deal with our stuff, it deals with us. May we all speak our truths, before our buried truths destroy us. Out with the old, in with the true…” Jeff Brown

 

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“So many live their lives feeling unloved, unseen, unrecognized, unappreciated. So very many. You may not know who they are because we are all conditioned to hide our truth below a bushel of shame. But they are everywhere. When you make an effort to share your love, you don’t always know where it will land. But be sure that it does. Sometimes it lights a torch for others to follow. Sometimes it gives them reason to believe that there is a better life waiting for them after a lifetime of disappointment. Sometimes it builds spirits and sometimes it actually saves lives. We just have to keep giving the love wherever and whenever we can. You never know how far it will travel.”  Jeff Brown

“We are powerful beyond measure, and so deeply vulnerable at the same time. This may seem like a dichotomy, but it isn’t. We have misunderstood real power. It has been something assertive, nonsurrendering, pushing on through. This is not real power. This is simply willfulness. Real power is something else—receptivity, vulnerability, the courage to keep your heart open on the darkest of days, the strength to feel it all even when the odds are stacked against you. Real power is showing up with your heart on your sleeve and absolutely refusing to waste one moment of your life hidden behind edginess and armor. The art of enheartened presence. Now that’s power.”  Jeff Brown

“The humanism bypass. I did it for years. I saw glimpses of someone’s potential, their beautiful soul, their loving heart, and told myself that this was who they truly were, ignoring all the rest. But the rest was what destroyed. The rest is where they lived most of the time. The rest was no illusion- it was them, too. This self-destructive pattern was birthed in two places: (1) my deep desire to see the best in my difficult parents. Not for them, but for me. I needed to believe that there was something kind and caring living inside of them; (2) a misplaced projection from my own self-concept work. I held the belief in my own potential, as a way of overcoming the shame I carried. But I made the mistake of assuming that everyone else was just as eager to find their light. Of course we all have glowing potential. At the core, we are all magnificent beings with profound capacities. But how many of us fully actualize it? At this stage of human development, not so many. The trick is to hold the space for two things at once- a deep belief in everyone’s possibilities, and a deep regard for your own well-being. It’s okay to pray for everyone’s liberation without joining them in prison. Pray from outside the prison walls, while taking exquisite care of yourself. It’s okay- you can’t do the work for them anyway. Boundaries, boundaries, boundaries… don’t leave home without them.”  Jeff Brown

“We are pioneers, we are. We are some of the first people to explore a way of being that is not premised on survivalism as our operating principal. For generations, people have been choosing their career path, their life partners, their ways of being, based primarily on what put food on the table. It didn’t matter how one felt about how one survived. All that mattered was staying alive. But a new way of being is taking root, one that is premised on authenticity above all else. We are beginning to insist on living from our truth, choosing our path and our connections from the soul outward. This is why its so damn difficult. Torn between the mantras of ‘Grin and Bear it’ and ‘Be who you really are’, we have one foot in each world, not entirely rooted in either. No wonder so many path travelers are in a state of confusion. We are saying goodbye to unhealthy connections while still lodged in a duty-bound culture. We are crafting a new, true way of being while carrying the shaming conditioning of the old world. We are laying down new tracks without a single footprint to follow. This is a profound consciousness shift on this planet. We are pioneers, we are. Pioneers of truth.” Jeff Brown

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“They tell us to wear masks, repress and hide our true feelings, teach us to adapt our personalities to the marketplace, and then they expect healthy functioning. Is that even possible from below a mask? Can it be any surprise that humans are depressed and act out in hurtful ways when they have been conditioned to distort their truths, bury their feelings, grin and bear it? If we want humans to act empathically, we have to model it to them as a society. If we want humans to stop hurting others, we have to support healthy emotional release so that they do not accumulate toxic feelings. If we want humans to move from their most heartfelt authenticity, we have to stop shaming and shunning their genuine expression. If we want humans to move from love, we must love them first. We can’t teach repression and disguise on a society wide level, and then expect loving, compassionate behavior. It’s entirely ridiculous.”  Jeff Brown