newest entry 2002-08-07 9:13 a.m.

I finished Camille the other day,and now I'm back in the gutter with another Amanda Cross mystery. I plan, for the duration of the summer, to alternate between da classics and good mysteries.

Camille is fun to read, but after all, it's a semi-high falutin (its falutin' is about shoulder-height) romance novel.

Here's a neat exercise from the Light Chasers book:

Think of some people who really annoy you. (These could be acquaintances, famous people, historical figures, anybody.) Write down a few characteristics of theirs that drive you nuts.

Now think of some people who you hate, and make a list of their uniquely awful qualities.

Recall some folks you admire and/or consider to be "better" than you, and jot down their most laudable traits.

Once you've got your list, read it over, and see if you can "try on" these qualities for yourself. You've just made a master list of all the attributes that you possess and aren't owning up to.

(I promise, as mundane and unsurprising as this activity is to read about, it is elucidatin' when actually done).

The premise of this exercise is that the qualties that carry the most emotional charge for us in other people are generally the qualities that we are denying in ourselves. All the worst and best of human nature is folded up dormant inside all of us, and the less we resist that, the more whole, relaxed, compassionate we can be.

The energy of repression gets freed up for a more creative use.

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