Awakening to My True Self

by Mark
(Amherst, Massachusetts, USA)

About a year ago, when I began therapy for depression related to the physical and emotional child abuse I suffered, my therapist suggested a class on mindfulness based stress reduction (MBSR) that was being offered. It is based on the principles of Buddhist meditation but is presented a non-sectarian way. Because of this class I have become very interested in Buddhist psychology and meditation. I no longer feel alone and that I am not the only one looking for deeper meaning in my life.

The initial benefit I noticed from meditation was the decrease in flashbacks and night terrors that I experience. Now they occur on an occasional basis and I am not sure what the triggering events are. I have also come to realise the many ways I have tried to distract myself from the pain of my past and how I have buried my true self deep in my mind. I guess that it was easier to live a lie than risk another beating from my mom or be scorned by the world in general when I tried to express who I really am.

I have often felt like my true nature is beating on the inside of my skull struggling to get out but it does not know the way. Through meditation and mindfulness I am starting to open up again and let out my true nature. It feels agonizingly slow at times, but after being conditioned by the world for the past 30 or so years to hide who I am, I should not expect instant results. After all, the Buddhist path is considered a life-long journey of awakening. I am just glad that I have started to walk the path to discover who I truly am.

A Video Reading by Darlene BarriereNote from Darlene: The volume of contributor submissions has now made it impossible for me to comment personally (especially in great detail) on each and every contribution. If I haven't left you a comment or one that is in-depth, please do not take my lack of a personal response as a slight, or as a statement that your story is somehow unworthy of my time. Nothing, and I do mean nothing, could be further from the truth. If there was a way for me to respond to all of you at length, I would.

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From Victim to Victory
a memoir

How I got over the devastating effects of child abuse and moved on with my life


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