Friday, September 23, 2011

My comments to Art Janovs' article On the Inability To Say "Good".

On the Inability To Say "Good"  (Click here to access the article)

Your story about “To Say Good”
As always your stories and reflections trigger a reaction. Often, I know what it is that stimulates me, but sometimes I am not certain. 

My father’s conditions to accept me were that I fulfilled his needs in the development of myself. In the position he held, considering his ambitions, he was certainly no failure as an instructor, department manager and functionary at an agricultural university. Having had better resources when he studied and with a little more ambition, I think he would have made an excellent head master. However, his constant depressions - loss of his mother and a couple of siblings as a 3-4-year-old due to a pandemic - broke down his innate Wallonian physical strength and his good looks and charm, and he died too early of a sudden heart attack when I was 40 and just had started PT.
I hated, repressed and needed him for almost a lifetime. I survived because I had something he did not have; My mother’s oxytocin producing feelings for me, which gave me enough strength to survive and rise from a pale, skinny boy with severe birth injuries to be an above average neurotic success. I was driven by my own pain and challenges to surpass my father with the mixed, undifined,  goal to both beat him and please him. Nethertheless, it was to late too receive the love he could not give when I needed it the most.
In relation to our fathers, I see no real difference in the effects of our stories, even if our sceneries and surroundings were totally different. Thanks to you, our fathers were “rich” sources for a good understanding of the impact of pain, and the endless act outs it creates. A pain which is and has been terrible but when the bulk of it is felt and comprehended, it can make life easy and natural and increase the understanding of the human conditions.
Jan Johnsson
How can your instructive, congenial, pain provoking = health creating stories about yourself ever be narcissistic? It hurts when you are saying things like that! Stories about yourself are for sure the best help, there is to understand ourselves! At least, you have inoculated that attitude in me....

Arthur Janov said...

Jan and now you see the difference between insight therapy and primal. Insights chace down each act-out and t ry to explain it. Primal gets into the deep motivation that drives it. Insights is an endless task and that is why patients stay in their therapy for years; always the hope for an improvement that never comes. You words are so kind. love art

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Comments to AJ Thoughts of a Department of Grace and Mercy

Go to Art Janov's article: On the Department of Grace and Mercy

A Department of Grace and Mercy
What a wonderful thought! She is certainly needed,  in L.A., in Mexico, in Uganda, in Irak, in Pakistan and in all other parts of the world. However, a minister of Grace and Mercy would have to be appointed by you, because all the good reasons for her appointment must be judged by the one who has been the leading participant in finding and defining the formula to real happiness. When you say “we”, who do you mean? The Primal Center, L.A., California, USA, the World?
You are often talking about the evolution. Evolution is a harsh master. Acting like an enlightened despot with a determination which instinctively cares about “our” survival. If we are threatened by too much pain, it protects us as long as survival can be achieved. The evolution is only for individual happiness and survival when it suites the species in general. To “reverse” evolution, which you in a genial way has proved possible, does not change evolution as such, it modifies and improves “only” a limited number of life stories.
I personally think that the evolution, with its development of endless neurotic painkilling manners and habits to run the world into an overpopulated, polluted place with an ever increasing lack of important resources and fair distribution for our survival will end our present culture. So it has done over and over again with earlier cultures. It won’t happen fast. However, seen from the perspective of eternity, life is like a second...
None the less it has been a blessing to have been able to feel and understand the importance of receiving and giving love. To read your books during 40 years and to slowly, painfully understand how it eventually could feel when human behavior and it’s conditions are at their best. These experiences seem to be well protected secrets available only to a few. Personally, I was allowed to see the biology of love and to understand the evolution in “reverse” with your guidance to the price of my experience of going through inhuman pain during a horrendous and confusing birth process. 
These experiences gave me 20+ years to enjoy happiness and real life, and I want with my limited ability to give your message to those who want to receive it and ask for it!
Jan Johnsson

Arthur Janov said...

Jan very elegantly put. art janov

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Why do we have an insane treatment of insanity?

Comments to Art Janov’s The Insanity in the Treatment of Insanity

Why do we have an insane treatment of insanity?

Before I understood PT, “evolution in reverse” and what pain could be, I thought I was stupid. A few times when I began to study psychology, I became confused and scared that something in my intellectual capacity was missing. The words didn’t fit with what I felt and how I saw things as an epileptic. My driving force to study was of course to gather knowledge to be able to figure out why I had seizures and fits. However, the more I ruminated thoughts and ideas about my illness, the more I suffered. I managed a few credits in psychology but gave up any thoughts of a degree. That did not mean that I stopped working with problems related to human behavior. Quite, the contrary. 
After having encountered PT and having taken an early decision, when my situation allowed me, to confront, head on my, my pain and epilepsy, I started to get hints at an answer to my question why I had epilepsy. The fascinating thing was, and still is, that this way I would learn about psychology through my feelings. My most dramatic experience was when I discovered / felt / relived my very subtle neurotic behavior to try to be someone I was not and to act in such a way that I could be accepted, loved and respected for something that was a neurotic fake. The pain behind it was so horrible and intense - it was like my head was squeezed with such a violent force that it felt like something in the brain crashed like a light bulb. When I felt that immense pain, I recognized the tremendous force which had propelled my ambitions for years and years to achieve love and acceptance. I had made me run, act and risk at a degree which had nothing to do with my real needs during 40 years. When I could not resist the perpetual pressure, but the gates broke open I had fits and seizures which later turned into birth primals and relived pain.
I would have liked Lennart Nilsson, the famous photographer, who filmed “A Child is Born”, to have filmed my brain, during my abnormally extended birth process, during an epileptic seizure, during my birth primals and when I acted in my most successful neurotic manner. If he had been able to rig up cameras in the 3 crucial levels in my brain, we could have shown the whole world that my neurotic 3rd line behavior was propelled by 1st line pain which processes were communicated and masterminded by the electrochemical intelligence in the limbic center. He would also have been amazed by the fact that my vital signs, before the pain was felt (which happened gradually and took years) were so high and afterwards ended up below what is considered “normal”. And so they have stayed.
My pain was immense, but my physical vitality was high, my social security network stable, my epileptic drugs effective that I managed for many years to maintain a neurotic appearance as a “success”, which I within myself could not live with. Unfortunately, I have seen many of the same kinds around me. Most of them think that it is the way it is supposed to be. Extremely few believe that my story is possible. Members of my first family cannot stand that I leave out my lifelong fight with a horrible birth, my experiences in PT and my story that much of my business success was a neurotic behavior. Some of them are devastated, probably by feeling their own pain.
I think that their very common and pain driven reaction is what makes today’s cognitive psychotherapy possible. As Art says; “the cognitive therapists skim the surface like their therapy,” and that is what most people ask for. “Any therapy which does not deal with Primal Pain as its primary goal can never resolve neurosis or its symptoms. The same can be said of most political systems as well. Either you fulfill needs - personal or social - or you suppress it”. (AJ)
Jan Johnsson

Friday, September 9, 2011

“Origins of ADD and Leaky Gates.

Drugs normalize. The reason you get addicted is because you try to normalize the system. And then they are taking drugs away - why? Until you get normalized here (in PT) you need them.”  
The title and the quoted sentences are extracts from a documented conversation between Art Janov and two patients undergoing primal therapy treatment.
When I read these sentences, I became aware of what I have “known” a lifetime. During a long life, rich in changes, I have met many in my immediate surroundings, families, friends and colleagues who have been dependent of drugs to function. However, I could not really see them as addicts (I’m talking about those who were criticized for balancing their pain with drugs) and moral comments about their drug consumption, I could not understand. In a way, I saw them as “normal” and in my ignorance, I never gave it a thought that they were affected. After a few incidents, I learned that I could not judge when they were on drugs. My own drug those days, Tegretol, to kill my imprinted pain during birth, and my lack of sense of smell during almost 50 years, made me disabled as a “police dog”.
It took 40 years in PT to realize the importance of AJ’s words in the extracts. How little we know of human needs, sufferings and behaviour.

Jan Johnsson