When I was reading about the way your subconscious mind uses pain to distract you from repressed emotion, I found myself wondering if my mind sometimes used things other than pain. I was specifically thinking about obsessive thoughts, which I am very prone to. This last long weekend I spent a lot of time obsessing over a difficult person in my gaming guild. My antipathy to this person is so strong that I am starting to avoid my guild when he is present. This weekend, circumstances forced me to 'out' this antipathy to our guild leader, but I didn't really want to tell him why I disliked this guy so much, because my dislike seems so very out of proportion to his actual deficits of character. Instead I spent way too much time trying to justify my dislike, both to myself and to friends. So after reading today's SEP lesson, I wanted to examine the emotions he arouses in me, and I think I'm seeing light. You see, his biggest offense in my sight is that he is obsessed with another female guild member, in a way that is mostly just embarrassing to all who witness it, but is also extremely creepy. She is handling it with equanimity, but I am enraged whenever he starts it up. And for me at least, violent rage and hatred have only one source - fear. Why should I be afraid? He's not obsessed with me, thank God. But the truth is, I have several stalkers in my past, all extremely like this man in essentials. I was never injured in these incidents, but my life was made terribly miserable for many months, and I was nearly driven out of my community by this person who would not leave me alone. So when I journaled today, it was about that stalker, and I tried to go back and feel the emotions that I felt at that time. I didn't feel fear. What I felt was exactly the same thing I feel for this current guild member - a violent antipathy, a desire to hit, strike out, say the cruelest, most cutting things I could think of, do whatever it took to make him LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE. Wow. Hopefully this is the healthiest way to deal with this... I'm not trying to rationalize what kind of feeling this is, just letting it roar out onto my page in unfiltered vitriol. In this case, my hope is not to get rid of physical pain, but to be OK with a poor unsocialized guy who's just trying to find some friends. He really is harmless, and I just would like to feel that, rather than quit the guild or try to get the leader to oust him. I would like to feel compassion.