• Dr. Stefan

I have been being prompted by my ever-new, ever-growing sense of intuition, to post a few lines about what I have been experiencing lately. The reference I am making is not a new one. It is, perhaps, one of the most ancient ones that exists: that of describing the Universe, All Creation, as a holographic.

Within the holograph, any part of the overall whole can describe the whole when light is shined through it, much as the prismatic color display when a light is shown through a diamond. I have recently deepened my work on myself in ways that have allowed me to have a deeper, clearer, more penetrating view and understanding of what "myself" actually means.

Like most of us, for a very long time, I was trapped into believing that the outer circumstances of my life, and all of the conditions of the world were, in fact, "reality." I have, for quite some time, been working with therapy clients around shame and trauma. The more I healed my own shame, the more I came to realize that I had internalized a great deal of it, related especially to my own violent childhood and to experiences in Vietnam in the military.

Through the many years (more than fifty now), I gradually learned to stop blaming others and accept a certain level of personal responsibility (NO! I did not create my own shame or injuries! But how I reacted to them, and kept re-enacting them, was my choice). The more deeply I investigated, the more I came to see the wisdom that all people and all creatures are connected; and affect one another. From that view I have, for the last six months of so, been taking a deeper dive into my own consciousness; and been releasing even more of the old "held objects" of shame and blame, of fear and terror, that I had long been carrying as actual psychic weight within myself.

I have only recently finally made peace with both of my parents for what I consider to have been their participation in my forming a twisted view of myself and the consequent unfoldment of events in my life, including many years of drug addiction (now 39 years clean from cocaine). The more I delved into how I considered myself, and began to consider myself in a totally different light (spawned by work with incredibly radiant healers who helped me release much old, embedded traumatic memory that, in turn has led to daily meditation and yet other deeper work on myself ), the more I have come to see that "reality" is an inner orientation to cultivate; and therefore, I no longer have to "work" to become a better man; or "battle" with Shadow and inner "demons" to work toward a more "perfect" state.

I have come to see that all of my emotional and spiritual "thrashing around," driven by my shame and anxiety, simply created more of the same. And contributed to the abased conditions of the world. I have come to understand that by deepening my awareness of my true Self, the genuine place in the cosmic order that I have always "owned," that I can ONLY improve the world and conditions on Earth by deepening my own sense of peace and belongingness. I can only change the world by changing myself, by freeing myself of old imprints and beliefs. I am now treating the Universe the way I want to be treated.


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  • Dr. Stefan

Copyright Stefan J. Malecek, Ph.D. December 24, 2021: 1855 Haiku, Maui, Hawai'i

The crushing weight of contemporary society continues its onward rush, as we approach what is euphemistically called “the holidays.” I know some people (most?) might be surprised to be reading (hopefully) someone’s exposition here who is not terribly pleased or excited about this time of year.

For me, it is artificiality exponentialized. Living in a global society that is infected by the money virus, I find things getting even more amped up during this period of the year, when we are bombarded with even more advertising and pressure to spend even more money than ordinarily. And for what?

We are told (and expected to believe that we will feel better about ourselves and “make” others happy with extravagant gifts and raucous gathering at which we eat and drink too much. This speaks very relevantly to today’s topic.

I question: From whence did these notions arrive? Who created them? And why?

The simple answer can always be found by asking: Qui bono? (Who benefits?) I have found through the years that even the most seemingly inexplicable events can be explained by the answer to this question, because undoubtedly someone is always benefiting, even from the most seemingly outrageous or bizarre behaviors.

The simple answer here is, of course, business people, banks, retailers and all of the associated industries. But, if one were to look more deeply, one might see a more complex set of operations occurring beneath the surface. One might see a pattern or blueprint, a schematic, upon which the entire workings of the world (at least the contemporary society) have been created.

These mighty forces are constantly at play in humanity, creating a picture of how and why the world we live in works (or does not, depending on your point of view). Rao spoke of the “psychopathic business model” the British East India Company developed almost 400 years ago.

Let’s take greed as an example. The Oxford Dictionary of Psychology defines it as “Excessive or rapacious desire, especially for wealth, or possessions.” It is the most intense and virulent of all addictions. It is the "norm" or lingua franca in Western societies. “Naturally one should be greedy!” is an assumption that feeds and is fed by, two closely related phenomena: the concept of enough and the productivity illusion.

There is not, and can never be, enough of anything physical, even mental. Such states of satiety are extremely transitory, driven by a vast, aching inner emptiness seeking to be filled externally. Such acquisitions serve the purpose of temporarily “fixing” that craving. In this sense, it is an addiction. Various hungers drive us to devote the bulk of our time and energy pursuing the illusion of (always temporary) satisfaction, and then, again and again, to seek more in the failed aftermath. The key to this usurpation of consciousness is greed. Greed is the supreme addiction.

Underlying this universal experience is the ravening sense of lack of completion and unfulfilled wholeness. I posit this as a shame-based artifact promoted by the unexamined belief and mandates of many, many generations of individuals who simply pass along their delusions from generation to generation. They become concretized and considered to be “normal,” such as the belief that violence and war are “natural.” Or, if one were to look at the obviously false idea: “Net worth equals self-worth.” But the drive to have more in order to be more, is influential. It is directly linked to the idea that producing more results in a net benefit. (It may do so in the short run for a few, but overall, only feeds the illusion).

Violence of all sorts (against oneself and others) is intimately related to shame and rage. It depends on the degree to which one’s healthy emotions have been suppressed and/or disowned. When one is not allowed an outlet through normal neural and emotional circuits, rage may become magnified.

All children are taught to protect and idealize their parents, even see them as “gods”—certainly the parents are far more powerful than themselves. Children may learn to harm themselves instead of others, suppressing legitimate anger and hurt. Children may even adopt quasi-adult behaviors in a process known as adultification, or role inversion.

Potter-Effron and Effron once noted that individuals with “mirror hungry personalities” may experience tremendous “narcissistic rage” episodes when their immediate needs aren’t met—they experience any rejection as a threat to their sense of self, and respond by attacking the source of danger. Underneath all this is the lingering risk of empty depression that reflects a “sense of non-being.” Laing spoke to this as “primary ontological insecurity.”

Albert and his associates once noted: “Most people develop acceptable self-images by accommodating their values to the logic of their activities, which are in turn structured by society’s institutional boundary…therefore, powerful pressures push people to seek only what society is prepared to bestow upon them.”

Thus we arrive at the current state of toxicity and technology, attempting to “fix” the errors of the past created by ignoring the vibrant beauty and aliveness of the Living Planet in favor of an artificial way of life run by base instincts and machines, ignoring love and empathy at our own continuing risk and the degradation of the Earth itself.

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  • Dr. Stefan

Updated: Dec 25, 2021

© Stefan J. Malecek, Ph.D.Sunday December 12, 2012: 1814 Pe'ahi, Maui Hawai'i

I am a brilliant trauma-recovery therapist. I am a very gifted Master Addictions Counselor (though no longer certified as such).

I have experienced all manner of addictions; and, in just a few weeks, I will be thirty-nine years clean from my second round of addiction to cocaine. I consider myself to be an expert.

I am using the previous two paragraphs to frame my rather vast experience with the excruciating pain of deep and intense shame, dating from my earliest memories onward. I have become an expert on shame, its etiology and attendant artifacts and behaviors. I have lived at its debilitating behest most of my life.

Today’s installment is an introduction to the topic. My intention is to reveal the process by which we have collectively developed the current toxic society, and then I will also speak to personal empowerment and sovereignty. Of course, I will also discuss some specific practices I have used, though many of them will be best undertaken in conjunction with a professional therapist. (This last is important because no one can see their own blind spots, and therefore totally provide for one’s own deepest psychic safety).

One of the most difficult-to-learn lessons—one in which I am still a daily student—is to love myself, treat myself to all of the love and joy and honor and praise I have ever wanted or felt I deserved from others; all that wonderful validation and recognition I have always craved that was so very long denied to me (with a few exceptions) because I grew up the object of my parent’s unmet needs and their vainglorious attempts at satisfaction.

It has been the journey of most of this lifetime to achieve what Archimedes would have called “a place to stand,” in preparation for my decision “to move the world.” For most of my time in this incarnation, I have striven to feel valuable, honored and worthy by achieving transient goals that looked appealing or appeared that they would satisfy my richest inner needs. I count all of the usual suspects: sex; money; power; excitement; education; praise—and none of them even partially approximated what I craved most of all: a sense of well-being, worthiness and love.

For the very longest time, I did not believe I was worthy of love, believing I had to “earn” it somehow. That is what kept me running wildly like a hamster cranked up on amphetamines on a wheel. Massive effort. Very little return—because I was seeking the sense of valuement and caring from achievements; because I did not feel worthy of the attainment or that I had the ability to attract the magnetism of love, I sought it consistently outside myself.

It has taken me a very long time, and a great deal of healing, to have come to the internal space where in I feel worthy of loving me; of giving to myself the gentleness, kindness and attention I have always envisioned that living in love with another would entail.

It is still multiple times a day self-reminder because I have lived for so long disenfranchised from myself. Now I am capable of giving myself compliments for jobs well done; forgive myself for the all-too-human errors we all make; share moments of compassion and empathy with the ever-increasing pains that are part of the lineage of aging; allow myself to feel the value of my dreams and goals—especially since they no longer have to be the extremely grandiose ones that drove me most of my life, attempting to compensate for all of the decades when I was lost and confused, wandering hungrily.

Through all of the years of both my personal (23 years as a professional drug addict) and academic research (12 years of college), I have pretty consistently been involved in different forms of psychotherapy and personal growth work. Through it all, my goal has always been to shed shame, become emotionally healthy and capable of genuine intimacy and love.

The primary process that has worked for me to redeem (Latin, “to buy back”) myself has been the releasing of toxic energy with which I had internalized, identified and then projected, seeking some kind of soul satisfaction in punishing those who had harmed me and just generally “getting ahead in the world,” based on the standards by which the contemporary world measures such things.

I have used all manner of processes to foster this growth: Primal Therapy, Rolfing, Gestalt, Shadow Work, various kinds of group work, GUTS, Inner Child work, hypnotherapy, et cetera. (I also used various other forms of discipline such as vegetarianism, veganism, fasting, raw food eating, believing for a very long time that I could achieve the purity of heart that I sought by manipulating my diet).

Ultimately, I had to acknowledge the primacy of emotion as a driving force for the changes I wanted to make. I realized that only by shedding the accumulated toxic emotional waste I carried would I ever be free of the unwanted extra weight I carried; of the embarrassing behaviors and twists of mind that haunted me; the terrible self-denunciations and other forms of self-harm I practiced; the titanic craving to be loved that has walked with me all of my days.

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