2013年10月29日 星期二

Problems and Pain

Life is difficult.

This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult - once we truly understand and accept it - then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters.
Most do not fully see this truth that life is difficult. Instead they moan more or less incessantly, noisily or subtly, about the enormity of their problems, their burdens, and their difficulties as if life were generally easy, as if life should be easy...
Life is a series of problems. Do we want to moan about them or solve them? Do we want to teach our children to solve them?
...Problems are the cutting edge that distinguishes between success and failure. Problems call forth our courage and wisdom; indeed, they create our courage and wisdom. It is only because of problems that we grow mentally and spiritually. When we desire to encourage the growth of the human spirit, we challenge and encourage the human capacity to solve problems, just as in school we deliberately set problems for our children to solve. It is through the pain of confronting and resolving problems that we learn. As Benjamin Franklin said,'Those things that hurt, instruct.'

excerpt from: Scott Peck(1978) The Road Less Travelled
pdf: Problems and Pain

2013年10月26日 星期六

Quotation - M. Scott Peck


The feeling of love is the emotion that accompanies the experience of cathecting. Cathecting, it will be remembered, is the process by which an object becomes important to us. Once cathected, the object, commonly referred to as a 'love object,' is invested with our energy as if it were a part of ourselves, and this relationship between us and the invested object is called a cathexis. Since we may have many such relationships going on at the same tme, we speak of our cathexes. The process of withdrawing our energy from a love object so that it loses its sense of importance for us is decathecting.
The misconception that love is a feeling exists because we confuse cathecting with loving. This confusion is understandable since they are similar processes, but there are also striking differences.
First of all, as has been pointed out, we may cathect any object, animate or inanimate, with or without a spirit. Thus a person may cathect the stock market or a piece of jewellery and may feel love for these things.
Second, the fact that we have cathected another human being does not mean that we care a whit for that person's spiritual development. The dependent person, in fact, usually fears the spiritual development of a cathected spouse. The mother who insisted upon driving her adolescent so to and from school clearly cathected the boy; he was important to her - but his spiritual growth was not.
Third, the intensity of our cathexes frequently has nothing to do with wisdom or commitment. Two strangers may meet in a bar and cathect each other in such a way that nothing - not previously scheduled appointments, promises made, or family stabiliy - is more important for the moment than their sexual consummation.
Finally, our cathexes may be fleeting and momentary. Immediately following their sexual consummation the just-mentioned couple may find each other unattractive and undesirable. We may decathect something almost as soon as we have cathected it. 
Genuine love, on the other hand, implies commitment and the exercise of wisdom. When we are concerned for someone's spiritual growth, we know that a lack of commitment is likely to be harmful and that commitment to that person is probably necessary for us to manifest our concern effectively. It is for this reason that commitment is the cornerstone of the psychotherapeutic relationship. It is almost impossible for a patient to experience significant personality growth without a 'therapeutic alliance' with the therapist. In other words, before the patient can risk major change he or she must feel the strength and security that come from believing that the therapist is the patient's constant and stable ally. For this alliance to occur the therapist must demonstrate to the patient, usually over a considerable length of time, the consistent and steadfast caring that can arise only from a capacity for commitment. This does not mean that the therapist always feels like listening to the patient. Commitment means that the therapist listens to the patient like it or not. It is no different in a marriage. In a constructive marriage, just as in constructive therapy, the partners must regularly, routinely and predictably, attend to each other and their relationship no matter how they feel. As has been mentioned, couples sooner or later always fall out of love, and it is at the moment when the mating instinct has run its course that the opportunity for genuine love begins. It is when the spouses no longer feel like being in each other's company always, when they would rather be elsewhere some of the time, that their love begins to be tested and will be found to be present or absent.
excerpt from: Scott Peck(1978) The Road Less Travelled.
pdf: Cathexis

2013年10月23日 星期三

Quotation - 霍玉蓮






摘錄自葛琳卡 (2007),《情緒四重奏:同行生命中的憂怒哀樂》

PDF: 真正的關懷-認同感受

2013年10月18日 星期五

Quotation - Scott Peck

On Giving

The most important sphere of giving, however, is not that of material things, but lies in the specifically human realm. What does one person give to another? He gives of himself, of the most precious he has, he gives of his life.
This does not necessarily mean that he sacrifices his life for the other - but that he gives him of that which is alive in him; he gives him of his joy, of his interest, of his understanding, of his knowledge, of his humor, of his sadness - of all expressions and manifestations of that which is alive in him.
In thus giving of his life, he enriches the other person, he enhances the other's sense of aliveness by enhancing his own sense of aliveness. He does not give in order to receive; giving is in itself exquisite joy. But in giving he cannot help bringing something to life in the other person, and this which is brought to life reflects back to him; in truly giving, he cannot help receiving that which is given back to him.
Giving implies to make the other person a giver also and they both share in the joy of what they have brought to life. In the act of givng something is born, and both persons involved are grateful for the life that is born for both of them. Specifically with regard to love this means: love is a power which produces love; impotence is the inability to produce love...

excerpt from: Erich Fromm (1956) The Art of Loving.
pdf: On Giving

2013年10月16日 星期三

Quotation - 葛琳卡

Favorable Exchange

Our whole culture is based on the appetite for buying, on the idea of a mutually favorable exchange. Modern man's happiness consists in the thrill of looking at the shop windows, and in buying all that he can afford to buy, either for cash or on installments. He (or she) looks at people in a similar way. For the man an attractive girl — and for the woman an attractive man — are the prizes they are after. "Attractive” usually means a nice package of qualities which are popular and sought after on the personality market.
What specifically makes a person attractive depends on the fashion of the time, physically as well as mentally. During the twenties, a drinking and smoking girl, tough and sexy, was attractive; today the fashion demands more domesticity and coyness. At the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of this century, a man had to be aggressive and ambitious — today he has to be social and tolerant — in order to be an attractive "package." At any rate, the sense of falling in love develops usually only with regard to such human commodities as are within reach of one's own possibilities for exchange. I am out for a bargain; the object should be desirable from the standpoint of its social value, and at the same time should want me, considering my overt and hidden assets and potentialities.
Two persons thus fall in love when they feel they have found the best object available on the market, considering the limitations of their own exchange values. Often, as in buying real estate, the hidden potentialities which can be developed play a considerable role in this bargain. In a culture in which the marketing orientation prevails, and in which material success is the outstanding value, there is little reason to be surprised that human love relations follow the same pattern of exchange which governs the commodity and the labor market.

excerpt from: Erich Fromm (1956) The Art of Loving.
pdf: Favorable Exchange

2013年10月15日 星期二

Quotation - Paul Tillich

"Fallng" in Love

The third error leading to the assumption that there is nothing to be learned about love lies in the confusion between the initial experience of "falling" in love, and the permanent state of being in love, or as we might better say, of "standing" in love. If two people who have been strangers, as all of us are, suddenly let the wall between them break down, and feel close, feel one, this moment of oneness is one of the most exhilarating, most exciting experiences in life. It is all the more wonderful and miraculous for persons who have been shut off, isolated, without love.
This miracle of sudden intimacy is often facilitated if it is combined with, or initiated by, sexual attraction and consummation. However, this type of love is by its very nature not lasting. The two persons become well acquainted, their intimacy loses more and more its miraculous character, until their antagonism, their disappointments, their mutual boredom kill whatever is left of the initial excitement. Yet, in the beginning they do not know all this: in fact, they take the intensity of the infatuation, this being "crazy" about each other, for proof of the intensity of their love, while it may only prove the degree of their preceding loneliness.
This attitude — that nothing is easier than to love — has continued to be the prevalent idea about love in spite of the overwhelming evidence to the contrary. There is hardly any activity, any enterprise, which is started with such tremendous hopes and expectations, and yet, which fails so regularly, as love. If this were the case with any other activity, people would be eager to know the reasons for the failure, and to learn how one could do better — or they would give up the activity. Since the latter is impossible in the case of love, there seems to be only one adequate way to overcome the failure of love — to examine the reasons for this failure, and to proceed to study the meaning of love.

excerpt from: Erich Fromm (1956) The Art of Loving.

pdf: Falling in Love

2013年10月12日 星期六

Quotation - Scott Peck


博哈特(Arthur Bohart) 的研究顯示,受助者如果能夠表達憤怒的情緒,並且反思這情緒,較只是反思或表達憤怒的情緒,更能有效地化解憤怒。因此,能夠注意身體那刻的變化,意識身體五官的感受,然後思想可以將身體的變化用語言表達其象徵的意義,把神經化的信息流入意識的經驗,然後化成個人意義的象徵,會幫助身心健康,並帶來以下好處:
1. 幫助明白自己的感受和需要;

2. 幫助自己減低情緒的困擾;

3. 幫助自己增加對自己經驗的主控權;

4. 幫助溝通,增加別人對自己的明白和接納。

摘錄自葛琳卡 (2007),《情緒四重奏:同行生命中的憂怒哀樂》
pdf: 用語言形容情緒

2013年10月9日 星期三




1) 注視自己內在五官生理機能的自動化經歷

2) 把五官的信息象徵化,結合情緒體系變成高層次的意義(不再抽離於意識外)

3) 令情緒體系架構接納新的經驗

4) 對於經驗作出反省,並且創造新的意義
摘錄自葛琳卡 (2007),《情緒四重奏:同行生命中的憂怒哀樂》
pdf: 情緒的意識與選擇

2013年10月8日 星期二


1) 存在但不被意識。
2) 存在但只有部分或邊緣被意識。
3) 存在和被經歷,但不能透過語言象徵其意義。
4) 被經歷和意義清晰地被象徵化。
5) 被經歷和象徵化,人可以完全地明白它的起因和意義,以及相關連的行動傾向、需要和慾望。

1. Greenberg, S. Leslie, Rice, N. Laura, and Elliott, Robert. (1993 ). Facilitating Emotional Change. New York: Guilford Press.

摘錄自葛琳卡 (2007),《情緒四重奏:同行生命中的憂怒哀樂》
pdf: 情緒的意識

2013年10月7日 星期一


Community is and must be inclusive. The great enemy of community is exclusivity. Groups that exclude others because they are poor or doubters or divorced or sinners or of some different race or nationality are not communities; they are cliques - actually defensive bastions against community.
Inclusiveness is not an absolute. Long-term communities must invariably struggle over the degree to which they are going to be inclusive. Even short-term communities must sometimes make that difficult decision. But for most groups it is easier to exclude than include. Clubs and corporations give little thought to being inclusive unless the law compels them to do so. True communities, on the other hand, if they want to remain such, are always reaching to extend themselves. The burden of proof falls upon exclusivity. Communities do not ask "How can we justify taking this person in?" Instead the question is "Is it at all justifiable to keep this person out?" In relation to other groupings of similar size or purpose, communities are always relatively inclusive...
How is this possible? How can such differences be absorbed, such different people coexist? Commitment - the willingness to coexist - is crucial. Sooner or later, somewhere along the line (and preferably sooner), the members of a group in some way must commit themselves to one another if they are to become or stay a community. Exclusivity, the great enemy to community, appears in two forms: excluding the other and excluding yourself. If you conclude under your breath, "Well, this group just isn't for me - they're too much this or too much that - and I'm just going to quietly pick up my marbles and go home," it would be as destructive to community as it would be to a marriage were you to conclude, "Well, the grass looks a little greener on the other side of the fence, and I'm just going to move on." Community, like marriage, requires that we hang in there when the going gets a little rough. lt requires a certain degree of commitment. lt is no accident that Bellah et al. subtitled their work Individualism and Commitment in American Life. Our individualism must be counter-balanced by commitment. If we do hang in there, we usually find after a while that "the rough places are made plain." A friend correctly defined community as a "group that has learned to transcend its individual differences." But this learning takes time, the time that can be bought only through commitment.
"Transcend" does not mean "obliterate" or "demolish." lt literally means "to climb over." The achievement of community can be compared to the reaching of a mountaintop. Perhaps the most necessary key to this transcendence is the appreciation of differences. In community, instead of being ignored, denied, hidden, or changed, human differences are celebrated as gifts...
We are so unfamiliar with genuine community that we have never developed an adequate vocabulary for the politics of this transcendence. When we ponder on how individual differences can be accommodated, perhaps the first mechanism we turn to (probably because it is the most childlike) is that of the strong individual leader. Differences, like those of squabbling siblings, we instinctively think can be resolved by a mommy or daddy - a benevolent dictator, or so we hope. But community, encouraging individuality as it does, can never be totalitarian. So we jump to a somewhat less primitive way of resolving individual differences which we call democracy. We take a vote, and the majority determines which differences prevail. Majority rules. Yet that process excludes the aspirations of the minority. How do we transcend differences in such a way as to include a minority? It seems like a conundrum. How and where do you go beyond democracy?
In the genuine communities of which I have been a member, a thousand or more group decisions have been made and I have never yet witnessed a vote. I do not mean to imply that we can or should discard democratic machinery, any more than we should abolish organization. But I do mean to imply that a community, in transcending individual differences, routinely goes beyond even democracy. In the vocabulary of this transcendence we thus far have only one word: "consensus." Decisions in genuine community are arrived at through consensus, in a process that is not unlike a community of jurors, for whom consensual decision making is mandated. Still, how on earth can a group in which individuality is encouraged, in which individual differences flourish, routinely arrive at consensus? Even when we develop a richer language for community operations, I doubt we will ever have a formula for the consensual process. The process itself is an adventure. And again there is something inherently almost mystical, magical about it. But it works. And the other facets of community will provide hints as to how it does.

excerpt from: Scott Peck (1987) The Different Drum.
pdf: Inclusivity

2013年10月4日 星期五


The first response of a group in seeking to form a community is most often to try to fake it. The members attempt to be an instant community by being extremely pleasant with one another and avoiding all disagreement. This attempt – this pretense of community – is what I term “pseudo-community.” It never works.
In pseudo-community a group attempts to purchase community cheaply by pretense. It is not an evil, conscious pretense of deliberate black lies. Rather, it is an unconscious, gentle process whereby people who want to be loving attempt to be so by telling little white lies, by withholding some of the truth about themselves and their feelings in order to avoid conflict. But it is still a pretense. It is an inviting but illegitimate shortcut to nowhere.
The essential dynamic of pseudo-community is conflict-avoidance. The absence of conflict in a group is not by itself diagnostic. Genuine communities may experience lovely and sometimes lengthy periods free from conflict. But that is because they have learned how to deal with conflict rather than avoid it. Pseudo-community is conflict-avoiding; true community is conflict-resolving.
What is diagnostic of pseudo-community is the minimization, the lack of acknowledgement, or the ignoring of individual differences. Nice people are so accustomed to being well mannered that they are able to deploy their good manners without even thinking about what they are doing. In pseudo-community it is as if every individual member is operating according to the same book of etiquette. The rules of this book are: Don’t do or say anything that might offend someone else; if someone does or says something that offends, annoys, or irritates you, act as if nothing has happened and pretend you are not bothered in the least; and if some form of disagreement should show signs of appearing, change the subject as quickly and smoothly as possible – rules that any good hostess knows. It is easy to see how these rules make for a smoothly functioning group. But they also crush individuality, intimacy, and honesty, and the longer it lasts the duller it gets.
The basic pretense of pseudo-community is the denial of individual differences. The members pretend – act as if – they all have the same belief in Jesus Christ, the same understanding of the Russians, even the same life history. One of the characteristics of pseudo-community is that people tend to speak in generalities. “Divorce is a miserable experience,” they will say. Or “One has to trust one’s instincts.” Or “We need to accept that our parents did the best they could.” Or “Once you’ve found God, then you don’t need to be afraid anymore.” Or “Jesus has saved us from our sins.”
Another characteristic of pseudo-community is that the members will let one another get away with such blanket statements. Individuals will think to themselves, I found God twenty years ago and I’m still scared, but why let the group know that? To avoid the risk of conflict they keep their feelings to themselves and even nod in agreement, as if a speaker has uttered some universal truth. Indeed, the pressure to skirt any kind of disagreement may be so great that even the very experienced communicators in the group – who know perfectly well that speaking in generalities is destructive to genuine communication – may be inhibited from challenging what they know is wrong...
In my experience most groups that refer to themselves as “communities” are, in fact, pseudo-communities. Think about whether the expression of individual differences is encouraged or discouraged, for instance, in the average church congregation. Is the kind of conformism I have described in the first stage of community-making the norm or the exception in our society?
...Often all that is required is to challenge the platitudes or generalizations. When Mary says, “Divorce is a terrible thing,” I am likely to comment: “Mary, you’re making a generalization. I hope you don’t mind my using you as an example for the group, but one of the things people need to learn to communicate well is how to speak personally – how to use ‘I’ and ‘my’ statements. I wonder if you couldn’t rephrase your statement to ‘My divorce was a terrible thing for me.’”...
Once individual differences are not only allowed but encouraged to surface in some such way, the group almost immediately moves to the second stage of community development: chaos.

excerpt from: Scott Peck (1987) The Different Drum.
pdf: Pseudo-communities

2013年10月2日 星期三

Quotation - Scott Peck

A Group of All Leaders

          When I am the designated leader I have found that once a group becomes a community, my nominal job is over. I can sit back and relax and be one among many, for another of the essential characteristics of community is a total decentralization of authority. Remember that it is anti-totalitarian. Its decisions are reached by consensus. Communities have sometimes been referred to as leaderless groups. It is more accurate, however, to say that a community is a group of all leaders. Because it is a safe place, compulsive leaders feel free in community - often for the first time in their lives - to not lead. And the customarily shy and reserved feel free to step forth with their latent gifts of leadership. The result is that a community is an ideal decision-making body. The expression "A camel is a horse created by a committee" does not mean that group decisions are inevitably clumsy and imperfect; it does mean that committees are virtually never communities.
          So it was in 1983 when I needed to make some difficult major decisions in my life - so difficult that I knew I was not intelligent enough to make them alone even with expert advice. I asked for help, and twenty-eight women and men came to my aid from around the country. Quite properly, we spent the first 80 percent of our three days together building ourselves into a community. Only in the last few hours did we turn our attention to the decisions that needed to be made. And they were made with the speed and brilliance of lightning.
          One of the most beautiful characteristics of community is what I have come to call the "flow of leadership." It is because of this flow that our community in 1983 was able to make its decisions so rapidly and effectively. And because its members felt free to express themselves, it was as if their individual gifts were offered at just the right moment in the decision-making process. So one member stepped forward with part A of the solution. And since the community recognized the wisdom of the gift, everyone deferred to it so that instantly, almost magically, a second member was free to step forward with part B of the solution. And so it flowed around the room.
          The flow of leadership in community is routine. It is a phenomenon that has profound implications for anyone who would seek to improve organizational decision-making – in business, government, or elsewhere. But it is not a quick trick or fix. Community must be built first. Traditional hierarchical patterns have to be at least temporarily set aside. Some kind of control must be relinquished. For it is a situation in which it is the spirit of community itself that leads and not any single individual.
excerpt from: Scott Peck (1987) The Different Drum.

2013年10月1日 星期二

Quotation - Martin Luther King

Self Love

          Love, in principle, is indivisible as far as the connection between "objects" and one's own self is concerned. Genuine love is an expression of productiveness and implies care, respect, responsibility and knowledge. It is not an "affect" in the sense of being affected by somebody, but an active striving for the growth and happiness of the loved person, rooted in one's own capacity to love.
          To love somebody is the actualization and concentration of the power to love. The basic affirmation contained in love is directed toward the beloved person as an incarnation of essentially human qualities. Love of one person implies love of man as such. The kind of "division of labor," as William James calls it, by which one loves one's family but is without feeling for the "stranger," is a sign of a basic inability to love...
          From this it folllows that my own self must be as much an object of my love as another person. The affirmation of one's own life, happiness, growth, freedom is rooted in one's capacity to love, i.e., in care, respect, responsibility, and knowledge. If an individual is able to love productively, he loves himself too; if he can love only others, he cannnot love at all...
          These ideas on self-love cannot be summarized better than by quoting Meister Eckhart on this topic: "If you love yourself, you love everybody else as you do yourself. As long as you love another person less than you love yourself, you will not really succeed in loving yourself, but if you love all alike, including yourself, you will love them as one person and that person is both God and man. Thus he is a great and righteous person who, loving himself, loves all others equally."
excerpt from: Erich Fromm (1956) The Art of Loving.
pdf: Self Love