Turil

I am for you

Better than Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Buddhism, and drugs

it's not a magic pill, it's a melon, eat it life will be better

Medicine, self help, and all the various kinds of therapy (secular and non) are huge business, constantly gaining converts and money and power. While people are simultaneously getting less and less happy. The fact is that at best these approaches can cover up the symptoms a bit, and maybe give people a sort of jury rigged good enough type solution to their current problems.

But the best and simplest approach is to actually go to the root of the problem, which is, of course, the basic needs.

We like to think we’re all clever and holier-than-thou when we find some kind of enlightened, technological, or ancient secret that allows us to circumvent our problems. But in reality we’re just creating some fancy decoration that we’re so very carefully balancing, lest it topple over, that makes everything seem better, while ignoring the whole underbelly of our lives which is very likely corroding to the point of collapse.

While those who find themselves considering how easy it can be to actually eliminate the majority of their problems when they focus on building a strong platform of a healthy body, by putting in the highest quality whole living foods, clean water, fresh air, comforting warmth, and energizing light, soon discover that those fancy decorations are unnecessary, and that they are capable of flowing through life joyfully and easily with their own solid and flexible selves.

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2 Comments»

  moonraven222 wrote @

I totally agree with you about the importance of everyone getting whole food, clean water, fresh air, etc. I don’t think this invalidates the usefulness of things like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Buddhism.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy allows us to look at distortions in our thinking. Basic Buddhism points out that much suffering is caused by our desire to try to hold on to things, rather than just letting go and enjoying whatever comes along. I have found both CBT and Buddhism very helpful in my own growth.

I also agree that there is a huge business growing out of things like CBT and Buddhism, just as there is a huge business growing out of things like ‘Whole Foods’ (I hate that they have appropiated that term!), clean water (bottled water, Britta filters, etc), and so on. But there are lots of cheap or free ways to learn the skills that CBT, Buddhism, etc, offer. (Start with your public library…) Not everybody needs all these things, but everybody’s growth is different.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs points out we start with basic needs like food, water, air, and warmth–but that’s just level one! A growing person needs safety and security, love and belonging, and a level of self-esteem. Many growth tools (including Buddhism and CBT) can help with this.

It’s not a matter of either/or, but of both/and. Or as Ken Wilbur puts it: transcend and include.

  turil wrote @

Sure, as I said the jury rigged stuff (the conscious reassessment and reorganization of thoughts and stories) can help, but only to an extent. It’s the band aid that won’t do any good if the body isn’t healthy enough to physically heal the wound. You can indeed heal without the band aid, though. So while it’s pretty, and fun to explore the fancy band aids of Buddhism and CBT, doing so is perhaps more harmful than helpful if it takes away from your efforts to actually heal the body, because if the body isn’t healthy, people simply aren’t going to ever really feel safe/free, loved, belongingness, effectiveness, etc, or at least not for very long.


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