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IS AMERICA SICK?

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Walt Oleksy, Aug 5, 2015.

  1. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    At the risk of being considered an old grouch, at 85, I want to go ahead and say a few things about
    America today, and I think it has bearing on why some if not all parents are having trouble with their kids and teenagers.

    This comes from having just read that the movie and television actor Robert Downey, Jr. was just named the highest-paid actor in the world. Last year he earned $80 million, most of it from people going to see his violent action movies. I think America is sick and in pain partly because it is on an action and violence binge, as well as having an obsession with vampires and the paranormal.

    Yesterday I read that a pro basketball star is being offered $200 million by Addidas to promote their shoes.
    His almost as lucrative contract with Nike just expired.

    Those figures are insane, and who pay for them? You and I, in higher movie tickets and shoes for kids.

    I grew up in an age when we wore our street shoes and gym shoes down to the ground and when they had holes in them, we stuffed cardboard in them to walk to school even in rain and snow. We had one bicycle for the three of us, my older brother and sister and me. It got stolen the first day, even before I had a chance to ride it, and my father said that's all, he couldn't afford to buy another, not even a used one. We got around on roller skates until they wore out.

    Neighbors all around me let their kids have basketball hoops over the driveway. After a few weeks they stop using them. They plead for them, then ignore them and play video games or sit around with their iPads or other handheld devices instead of playing with their friends.

    I had to get this off my chest. It could be a lot longer, but this says most of it. I never married or had children, and probably would make a terrible father today, by kids' standards, because I wouldn't give them everything they want, including tickets to rock concerts that equal or better what I pay for groceries every month for my dog and myself.

    What do you think? Is America sick? Is this why you have aches and pains, or at least part of the cause?
     
    Tennis Tom likes this.
  2. riv44

    riv44 Well known member

    Walt and others: Pain and illness are bio-psycho-social. These spheres interact.
    We talk a lot here about repressed emotions. That is one kind of theory of the mind, coming from Freud, but Freudian personality theory is one of many. Attachment theory (John Bowlby) says that real experience of loss, and actual or feared separation and abandonment, especially in early life, set our template of self.
    Everyone makes meaning in his or her own way.
    The TMS concept has become part of my meaning-making. I am interested in these themes because psychology is my profession, and also because Sarno started me on a new way of relating to my pain. Before I encountered him, I was at a loss.
     
    BruceMC likes this.
  3. IrishSceptic

    IrishSceptic Podcast Visionary

    Walt I'm much younger but I have many of the same views. I think our bodies are a reflection of the impatient consumer culture society we have turned into. When we get ill, bam! pay a doctor X amount to get better/take a pill.
    Western society has a strong focus on the individual and many people don't feel they measure up to the ideal of success leading to all sorts of neuroses.
    I heard an interesting discussion of how tribal groups coped with a member who was in state of depression.
    They all gathered around that person, quite literally huddled round and showered them with compliments, hugs and love. At all times at least three tribespeople stayed with that person throughout day/night until they returned to normality.
    In our society it is seen as weak and so we hide,avoid talking about difficult things. It is seen as admirable to put your head down and 'get on with it'.
    its incredibly ironic given the average earner can live like Kings of Old.
    Recent economic turmoil has opened many eyes to the direction the world is heading and the need to change course, the problem being how to think of an alternative?
    the way forward is to try and reignite stronger community cohesion and spirit, all else will flow from that in my view. I think the oil will run out in my lifetime so things could get 'interesting'!

    ''It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.''

    Jiddu Krishnamurti
     
    Walt Oleksy and riv44 like this.
  4. riv44

    riv44 Well known member

    Psychological and physical pain are bio-psycho-social. That means out psyches, bodies, and the world we live in interact in endlessly looping ways. All dis-ease from depression to addiction to TMS is born of the interaction of these spheres. Belief is also a big part of it. One factor doesn't "cause" another. They cycle (a word I use with caution because of my bike accident today.)
    These issues are of endless fascination to me because of my clinical and scholarly work, and also because the concept of TMS has given me great hope and renewed spirit.
     
  5. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    I think all symptoms are conditioned and programmed to a high degree both by behavior and social environment. Sure, symptoms have physical causes (both major in the case of a germ-caused disease and quite minor in the case of TMS) but once any symptom appears it tends to acquire a conditioned life of its own, especially for people with perfectionist and goodist personality traits who happen to be, for one reason or another, socially isolated. Sort of like a feedback loop in electronics or a Möbius band in mathematics.
     
    riv44, IrishSceptic and Tennis Tom like this.
  6. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    I love the replies to my post. Looks like we agree, at least in principle. I keep so busy writing books, for kids and adults, I don't really think much about how overpaid athletes, actors, and rock stars are. I barely make a living writing, but figure I am happier than many billionaires. My best friend was very wealthy but the most unhappy person I knew, perhaps mainly because he wasted the God-given talents he had and never "went for it." If a person can't follow their dream fulltime, they can do it nights and weekends. Just DO IT!
     
    BruceMC and IrishSceptic like this.

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