There used to be a website on which I used to comment all the time. It was for escapees from Reeducation and it, along with comments from Jennifer who has also escaped from some cult-like atmospheres, is how I removed the gris-gris from myself.
Now someone else from that site has very kindly sent me some of my old comments and I realize is is true, I am quite bright. Here is an excerpt.
Z: There is something key, though, in the paradigm that I recognize from some of its adherents, who I am supposing really are depressed in a way I haven’t experienced. I think they truly believe life is primarily pain, so that the idea that one could heal from trauma, or that one could be living in a different way (and I don’t mean just a lucky set of circumstances or a happiness bubble) is foreign to them, and not only incomprehensible but unimaginable. So everything is mitigation. It is the same basic attitude as, for example, the justification for drug use: things are bad, and you have to do what you can to hold the more crushing forms of this awareness at bay. In other words it is a recipe of resignation. If you hope for more in life than simply to endure until liberated by death, this kind of “therapy” is just constraining.
B: Many people I know are usually in misery, as if it were a preferable state of being. The idea of not living in that way is even more frightening to them, so an avoidance-and-mitigation strategy is the best way to maintain a sustainable, if painful holding pattern.
A: Z, I just want to say that you are probably a genius. I have been searching and searching in my mind for the concept that you just articulated: “…everything becomes about mitigation…. It’s a recipe of resignation, basically.…” [N. Ed.: A’s quotation of me is excerpted but not redacted; my own, above, and B’s are redacted for reasons having to do with readability in the present context.]
Z: I’m not a genius, I just have certain analytical powers that I decided I had to turn full force onto this thing.
Now, we will see what else I can turn these analytical powers onto, full force.