Dr Cheryl Meier's Blog

Walk in Love

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On Wonder Woman, Courage, and Your Psychological Health!

I just found this CS Lewis quote:

 “Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage.”

And this one, from one of his other books:

“Courage is not simply one of the virtues but the form of every virtue at the testing point.”

Look, for a second at the definition of courage, it takes us to its very root and origin:

cour·age

ˈkərij/

noun: courage

the ability to do something that frightens one.

“she called on all her courage to face the ordeal”

strength in the face of pain or grief.

“he fought his illness with great courage”

Origin

Middle English (denoting the heart, as the seat of feelings): from Old French corage, from Latin cor ‘heart.’

——

What I learned in Montreal, at my internship almost 20 years ago (!) was that courage had to do with “en-heartening”– infusing heart/courage into someone is to encourage — and we usually get this from our fathers (for whatever reason…I’m sure we get it from our mothers as well!).

For some reason, from my experience in childhood or my personality, I always thought it was my job to encourage people– I literally became a cheerleader & probably blamed myself for not encouraging enough if our team lost! 

But you see, the important part is “strength in the face of grief or pain”– it’s not that you are fearless, it’s that you choose to do what is noble, what is true, what is right–what is most right at that very moment. (This requires wisdom, discernment, mindfulness, and acting from that still place within, if we can!) 

Courage, when mixed with true humility– makes it so you are able to see your own failings and have the heart to stand back up again, ask for/accept forgiveness and have “another go”…

We all have dis-ordered tendencies. We all fall flat on our faces…this chosen path of courage, if you choose it, is about having tenacity, perseverance– to search for/take hold of the courage available in order to press on.  

Ask God–the universe, however you understand the world at this moment. (Of course I hear my priest in the back of my mind reminding us to always be ready, strengthening ourselves by reading holy scriptures and other holy writings, praying at day’s beginning and end, and being mindful/present/contemplate/meditate…).  

It’s funny I put that in parenthesis … I think I used to think that those were just words a priest “had” to say — but I watch my young son run and train in his soccer practices and he asks me:

“Mommy, I just want to be a goalie, why do I have to run?”

And because I’m so often contemplating (opening my mind to quiet inspiration)– it just “struck” me — you run and do push-ups and al this conditioning so that you are ready for anything. If they never get the ball down to your side of the field — it is enough that you are ready, alert, watchful –that is your duty, your job.

That is ours. I recall what Mother Teresa said: “we are all called to be saints…”.

This past month seemed to have so many deaths– in the media and parents of friends who are dear to me.  

Besides being a psychologist, if I was not “grounded” and practiced in being honest and sincere about my own pain, doubts, questions etc –before God– then there is no way I would have the courage to enter into their grief with them.  

It’s easy to say something trite and tell them to just smile and move on… it doesn’t meet them where they are though.

I know what it is to be lost in discouragement –and to compulsively try to run from that…I’m not talking about faking ourselves out of it, but that doesn’t mean we are to totally identify with some old discouraging nature or part of ourselves.  

What am I trying to say and what does it have to do with Wonder Woman ?!  

If you see a clip from the new Wonder Woman movie or see the whole thing, you see a woman (of course made from clay + Zeus!) –who trained all the time on Paradise Island– even though it had been more than 20 years since anyone could even get to the island they lived on. It was a hidden island yet these Amazon women were “all trained up”! They displayed this heroic courage and general “bad-ass-ness” that I think we are all looking for.  

When we hear stories of true heroes like David killing the giant Goliath with a sling shot– some people think he just showed up and “did that” — but he was a shepherd and he had experience facing the danger of a bear and a lion trying to take his sheep. When everything is so “convenient” and “disposable” in our society these days, I could totally see myself just saying “that’s ok, I’ll just buy some new sheep next time my neighbor’s have some new baby lambs…”

But he protected the sheep that were his to look over. It was said he had a heart after God’s heart. He had built, by the graces given to him by God and also by “practice” using those graces– a true faith and courage where Goliath’s size didn’t even phase him. He had an understanding that there was a true Creator God and this giant was mocking him. It wasn’t an ego thing, he was just doing the valiant thing that he already knew to do, but on a bigger scale.

How safe and at peace would we all feel if we knew our neighbor was well practiced at taking the higher path, the most courageous and true path?! As Gandhi said “we must be the change we wish to see in this world…” 

I just read two nights ago about how the Coptic Christians in Egypt were taken off the bus by ISIS and were asked one by one to deny their faith, even the children. Not one did, though they were being violently killed/shot. I pray God would give us the courage we needed to be true in such a moment– I think now is practice, daily practice of the virtues and of courage, in whatever small or giant ways we are called on to live in that place.

Much love to you, you are not alone.

Sincerely,

Dr Cheryl

Entering into the Silence

Though the way may be long, the material of your mind intractable, to the eager lover of Reality ultimate success is assured. The strong tide of Transcendent Life will inevitably invade, clarify, uplift the consciousness which is open to receive it; a movement from without – subtle yet actual – answering each willed movement from within. 

‘Your opening and His entering,’ says Eckhart, ‘are but one moment.’ When, therefore, you put aside your preconceived ideas, your self- centred scale of values, and let intuition have its way with you, you open up by this act new levels of the world. Such an opening-up is the most practical of all activities; for then and then only will your diurnal existence, and the natural scene in which that existence is set, begin to give up to you its richness and meaning. Its paradoxes and inequalities will be disclosed as true constituents of its beauty, an inconceivable splendour will be shaken out from its dingiest folds. Then, and only then, escaping the single vision of the selfish, you will begin to guess all that your senses were meant to be…

~ Evelyn Underhill 

From her book Practical Mysticism

And she was quoting Meister Eckhart (a German theologian from the 1300’s)

I keep contemplating , as I live my life, and do my own spiritual & psychological “work” within –and as I continue working with clients:

–Perhaps this “driven-ness” (of mine and others(?) ) is not of God?! What if it is a neurotic creation of our own doing?!–

We are told by St. Paul to run this race as if we are running for the prize–for the victor’s crown— but we didn’t see Christ himself running around in anxiety about all the things wrong and broken in this world.  

We saw/see him present in each interaction, certainly– but not frantic or panicked! 

I keep entering in, then traveling away from this truth, this quiet place—then re-entering, re-turning to this silence.
I read this beautiful passage a few days ago from Blessed Theophylact (from @ 1080 AD) who was reiterating “blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” — he said that it is labor and work to join with God to clear out the muck (my wording, not his) that is making it more difficult to see God.

This isn’t neurotic work –but it is work, nevertheless — I’m sure it was some kind of work for Mary, sister of Martha, to be able to let go of external things enough –to choose silence, and “sit at the feet” of the great Teacher, Jesus. 

Perhaps it is the work of allowing the working of grace into deeper depths of our soul? Of stepping in to the presence of the ineffable– by daring to enter into this silence, in stillness, without all of our strategies and fixed plans?

I just listened to this passage (above) by Evelyn Underhill this morning –and I KNOW what she is speaking about — but only in glimpses.  

I want to know it more! And be afraid of this silent stillness less!

Much love to you on your journey!
~ Dr Cheryl 

On Chivalry

I found this and watched this today…it is such a valuable teaching!

Lewis actually says a line in this clip that one of my dear musician friends said to me–( regarding therapy) that it is an art and the canvas is a human life!

Lewis, here, speaks of the nature of chivalry and how it is an enlightened way of being –that is an art, to be developed in a human. It doesn’t happen naturally.

I’m back from summer holidays so I plan to be consistent here again! I do post regularly on Twitter @DrCherylM (https://mobile.twitter.com/drcherylm?lang=en)
And on Facebook as well — but I like to get more in depth here …

Much love to you all who find this! And love to those who don’t as well!
❤️

The Necessity of Chivalry
by C.S. Lewis Doodle

Truth Theory Article on “Why Diets Fail”

The guys at Truth Theory emailed me and asked me to write an article for them! They published it last month but I wanted to post it here in case you missed it!

Why Diets Fail ~ Dr. Cheryl article
It’s really about shame, addictions and how to keep bringing love to the cut-off, hurting parts of yourself!

Much love, always,

Dr. Cheryl

Love is the Answer Seminar 

I uploaded this seminar on YouTube this evening!

… It’s newly recorded, updated from one I made before!

Love is the Answer is the title and link!

I teach about how to get more love and healing into your life! Also:

  • Why we “depress” ourselves, or stay in anger or anxiety–
  • Why we get so mad when people push certain buttons.
  • What blocks us from intimacy
  • How to be more self-compassionate and kind.
  • Where we developed these patterns of behavior from and how to be more conscious in regards to healing our specific patterns!
  • Aligning ourselves with and connecting more to the love of God

Much love to each of you!

I’ll keep you updated with quotes, encouragement, and resources here on my @DrCherylM Twitter page too!

In the Arms of an Angel: Releasing the Addiction that Haunts You

Remember, my goal here is to help you learn how to traverse through your own difficulties, pains, addictions, and problems– and get yourself OUT– and into a place of LOVE. I could write blog after blog on specific problems and teach you how to heal each one, or I can help you learn the pattern, the path, the Way to keep seeing what the essence of your problem is/the core, so that you can heal the root and stop repeating the same pain.

I have been contemplating the idea of “the thorn in our side”! I just looked it up to find a definition for you here:

“(idiom): Something that greatly annoys the subject.”

Yes, indeed, something that greatly annoys us — about our own self.  I am not focusing, in this particular blog, on any outer circumstances or people that continue to annoy us, but on our own person, because this is where we have the power to change.  

And truly, — when we change what is going on inside of us, it will change everything around us and our reactions to them.

First, choose to imagine yourself surrounded by unconditional LOVE right now.  I want to bring understanding and enlightenment — not negativity. Looking at what we define as “annoying” can be negative in itself– because by definition, we are already in judgment about that part of ourselves.

This post is about growing in our ability to see clearly, the things we would like to change, while at the same time not utterly rejecting ourselves in critical judgment!  When we move to attacking, critical mode we react with a freeze, fight, or flight response, and do not get to address or release the “addiction” underneath that we are judging.

Ok, so lets say you feel ashamed about/annoyed with:

your “failures” at work or at home
your looks (outer appearance),
your drinking,
your anxiety,
your smoking,
your depression,
your obsessions,
your perfectionism,
your constant busyness,
your addictions…

Whatever it is that you would like to shove into a closet before your friends come over to visit you at your “house”…

I have looked at the thing/pattern that annoys me a million different ways — and this week I was so “done with it!” So, out of my desperation and determination to move out of this pattern, permanently, I really think I got to one of the deepest-deepest places.

I had just read something about “choose to go into your own shadow self.” And then another friend of mine said to me “jump into that ocean of the subconscious, into the pain, and you will find your answer.” She didn’t exactly say “into the pain”– but that’s what diving into that ocean meant to me!

Once we each get there though, to this deep-deep place, then we find that part of us that is missing the Love — The annoyance soon loses its power, it cannot continue to torture us. We dis-empower it, by healing the core pain/fear.

I know you want desperately to get rid of this annoyance of yours– so let’s figure out how!

Let’s just use “excessive drinking” as the example here–

What if, one of the main reasons we actually go to the “addiction” is so that
we can continuously stay in judgment over ourselves?!

This “addiction persona” is not even our “real” self anyways. But, lets say there is this judging side of yourself that temporarily feels super-important while it stays in continuous judgement over yourself. This is another addiction/quick-fix in itself–where I am feeding a self-righteous part of myself that wants to suck up all of its worth by putting another part of me down (like an inner bully).

Jesus said: “judge not, lest ye be judged” — The answer is right here–when we sincerely apply this teaching to ourselves in this way:

“stop judging yourself lest you be judged — by yourself!”

This doesn’t mean that we are to throw away all wisdom and stop seeking this highest path of REAL LOVE and right action. There are definitely lots of parts of me that I wish God would just burn away right now– but each of these parts of ourself must be willingly released. Shaming, condemning and judging those parts of ourselves will not get rid of them. They are there from an old wound, missing love…The shame and judgment are exactly what keeps love from getting to those places!

But here– is the deepest part I discovered:

What if, yes, I (subconsciously) keep around _________(insert “thorn in side”)– in order to 1) secretly feed that self-righteous judgmental part of myself —
but also, and more importantly, 2) what if I keep my “excessive drinking persona” around because I am afraid to actually know the REAL ME?

Remember: Intimacy, “into -me -see” …that’s vulnerability and possible closeness or rejection.

Let’s say we were: rejected, abused, abandoned, ignored, unloved, or “pushed to being perfect” as a child. “Pushed to perfection” communicates: “YOU are not worth loving as you are, so you better perform!” When this happens to us in childhood then a deep insecurity develops over that part of ourselves and we want to hide our “Self” away — far – far away.

What if we develop and keep the “addicted persona” around– in order to create a fiction exterior — so that she is the one that keeps getting rejected by others? 

i.e. “they hate me because ‘I’m such a failure.’ or ‘I’m a drunk.’ or “I’m out of control.”

When we stay in this vicious and continuous cycle (above)–this works as a built-in barrier — it keeps us from ever actually getting to know our REAL self! She is hidden deep down below this “annoying problem” we cling onto for dear life.

I am amazed, constantly when truly, every time, the solution within myself and with my clients has to do with some kind of fear of intimacy.

Imagine, God is Love — and we keep saying:
“No! No! Not the Love” …. “I” may be rejected, so I don’t want to give myself an opportunity to be known and LOVED.”

We unconsciously taught ourself: it’s easier to be rejected if we keep this “drunk exterior” — because this fictitious character takes the “bullet” for us. I mean, really, what if I was carrying 200 extra pounds on top of my regular size body– and I keep saying:

“They must not like me because I am overweight.”

I literally created a fat-barrier. Or if I am constantly overwhelmed by worry and anxiety — I say to myself:

“You are always worrying, something is definitely wrong with you! No wonder people are annoyed by you!”

Addiction cycleIt is a sad thing that you or I weren’t initially loved unconditionally — but how long are we going to keep this fictitious persona around –and create all this drama around the addiction and about judging the addiction– instead of letting all of that go and running to that little girl inside and picking her up in a huge embrace of sincere LOVE?! Really and truly– if we allow the deepest part of ourselves to receive this Love that is RIGHT HERE– waiting for us to receive — then whatever we thought was the real problem will begin to lose its hold. We won’t need it anymore — because we stopped insisting:

“you will be rejected!”

You are LOVED. You are truly and dearly loved. The problem is not your “constant failing.” The inner you is hidden deep down and she is not experiencing the Love of our Creator. Choose to stop judging yourself for judging yourself! All of that is what it is— let it just be neutral– no matter how ugly it looks to you. Tell yourself:

“I refuse to let you be a barrier anymore– that little girl needs REAL unconditional Love and I am bringing it to her, NOW! Before she has changed!”

Much Love to You…

In the Arms of An Angel

There’s always some reason to feel not good enough…
In this sweet madness, oh this glorious sadness
That brings me to my knees
In the arms of an Angel, far away from here
From this dark, cold hotel room, and the endlessness that you fear
You are pulled from the wreckage of your silent reverie
In the arms of an Angel; may you find some comfort here
~sarah mclachlan

arthur rackham rainbow woman

I Gotta Find Peace of Mind ~ The Prayer of a Modern Day Saint

I was listening, again, to: Lauryn Hill – I Gotta Find Peace of Mind (Unplugged)

… And it is equal to the prayers of saints and mystics….

It’s so beautiful and “raw” — pleading with the Creator to help us find our true peace.

I think perhaps one of the artist’s “jobs” is to show us the way, when we are discouraged, — to remind us of truth and beauty,  when we are momentarily blind to its presence…

You love me despite myself, sometimes I fight myself
I just can’t believe that you, would have anything to do
With someone so insecure, someone so immature
Oh you inspire me, to be the higher me
You make my desire pure…
~Lauryn Hill

Love to each of you as you search for True Peace of Mind!!

Sincerely, 

Dr. Cheryl

*Note: I’m re-posting some of my old posts that got erased! This is one of them!

Love is the Answer — Seminar

 

This video is 1 hour 20 min.long:

Love is the Answer seminar

…It is a one hour seminar I presented recently, then I recorded a longer, more in depth version for YouTube.  It is on Psychological and Spiritual growth.  Although I have authored 3 books, this is my first Video, so it is not as polished as I would like– but what I say is purposeful and there are deep concepts that have changed my life and my client’s lives.

It’s all about learning to remove the barriers between ourselves and LOVE.  If you would like me to expand on any area– comment at the video or here.
Much Love to you!