Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom.—Bertrand Russell
I’ve grown certain that the root of all fear is that we’ve been forced to deny who we are.—Frances Moore Lappe
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Rethinking the Lotus VI
• Which character in the story was turning to something to numb the pain in his or her life?
• What did that character turn to? Did it solve anything, or did it cause more problems?
• What pain do you think the character was trying to numb or forget?
• Do you identify with this character in any way?
• Have you ever tried to numb or forget pain in your life? What did you turn to? Video games?TV? Drugs or alcohol? Busyness? Did it solve anything or cause more problems?
• What pain were you trying to cover up, forget about, or numb by turning to this diversion?
Monday, May 21, 2007
Rethinking Intervention II
The group must have a leader—an Odysseus, so to speak. The leader must make sure that the group has been familiarized with the dysfunction at hand. If the problem is an addiction, treatment options should be investigated. The intervention group should meet prior to the actual intervention for purposes of preparation. What is going to be said to the individual? Who should be involved? Treatment should be arranged ahead of time.
Interventions of this kind may vary and don’t necessarily hold to a strict set of rules. Sometimes a simple intervention is best, maybe addressing a situation that hasn’t been previously acknowledged or asking a person to stop a behavior that is doing them harm or draining their life energy away. A simple intervention in an addiction to busyness can include requiring a student who is overextended to reduce the number of activities in which they are involved. For a teen that is lost in a fog of video games, television, or the Internet, it may mean taking away the game system, disconnecting the Internet, or removing the television from the bedroom. Regardless of the situation, it is highly recommended that you seek out the advice of a counselor or intervention professional for your particular situation.
Friday, May 18, 2007
The heroic Odysseus chose a much more intimidating path, a way that would place him in a position of appearing to be the very evil from which he was trying to rescue his men. One by one, the good king dragged his sailors back to the ship against their will. The ship represents a way to freedom, the very thing for which the men were longing. The crew, dizzy from the effects of the lotus, spat and fought against the very person that was carrying them to freedom.
When someone is using a crutch—whether video games, busyness, the Internet, television, chemicals, or anything else—to anesthetize the wounds of their heart, they will resist (sometimes violently) any attempts at distancing them from their particular lotus fruit. Once the lotus fruit is removed, they will find the particular pain they were anesthetizing will usually rise to the surface. But this allows both adult and adolescent to better comprehend the source of the wound and to explore the possibility of healing. If you are a teacher, counselor, or youth worker, you should attempt to work hand in hand with the parents of the adolescent who is self-medicating, whether literally or figuratively. If you are a parent, you will need the support of other adults in your child’s life.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Rethinking the Lotus V
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Rethinking the Lotus IV
Because Claire held down an after-school job as a waitress that enabled her to purchase her own car, she was able to drive herself to her various afterschool commitments. Since her mother was actively involved in her own social life, she failed to notice that Claire had less and less time to spare and that her schedule was increasingly tight. After cheerleading practice, Claire would drive herself to the restaurant where she worked, and she would wait tables for more than four hours. Because she was friendly and popular, she found herself accepting leadership positions in the Spanish club and the National Honors Society. If there was an activity, Claire was actively involved in it.
had happened to her before. A young part of her soul feared that if she were alone, it would happen all over again. She made a vow never to allow herself to be in that situation again, so she surrounded herself with activity and people.
Saturday, May 05, 2007
Rethinking the Lotus III
It is really the same effect that soap operas have had on people for generations now, except that a new dimension of reality has been stirred into the mix, creating an intoxicating blend. While she was watching them, the reality shows helped her to forget, or perhaps we should say "anesthetize," the agony of her own self-perception. Her blank stare into the expanse of the video screen might have mirrored that of the Greek sailors upon their consumption of the narcotic lotus.
Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Rethinking the Lotus II
After basketball practice, Barry would typically go to his room and surf the Internet for hours. He was drawn to the possibilities that the Web offered the endless array of information and stimulation. Often, he would log in to the instant messenger and communicate for hours, sharing intimate details with complete strangers. Here was intimacy without strings attached. Frequently, Barry would search through a variety of Web sites, finding more “eye candy” than the mind could fathom. He began going to sleep later and later at night, as his online activities began to absorb more and more of his time. His basketball coach noticed that he seemed increasingly lethargic on the court, and his grades began to drop. The cyber-lotus fruit of the Internet had done its work well. Barry had numbed the pain of his missing years with his father, and he was now lost in a fog of chat rooms and virtual worlds.