I have something for you …
In the therapeutic journey – I am always encouraged when we get to that underbelly of anger. I know we are close to home – and I gets, excited – almost manically excited! There is a deep well of pain – yes, but it is also where everyone’s power has been quarantined and caged all this time! Zo Gut – yar?
I lived in Paris in my early 20’s. I went there on a personal pilgrimage yearned for some kind of creative transformation. Exactly what I was going to become – I could not say, but I whiffed it and was hot on the trail, that little quiet still small voice within was saying something like, “If you want to know who you really are, go where no one knows you and see what you find”.
“I love getting to the bottom where there is no lie left”
I was enrolled in a French language course at the Sorbonne, and like many of my poverty minded peers, I was also an Au Pair. So I had friends who were also Au Pairs. One of my Au Pair friends – Antje, was from Germany, East Germany to be more specific. She was from Berlin. She was cool and spoke English in a way that was odd, even for someone from Germany.
The way she spoke reminded me of Alanis Morissette – this observation was so striking one day I asked her about it. She’d been an Au Pair in New York and before she found that person, we all need this person learning to speak another language – the one who patiently hangs in there with you whilst you try to communicate – she found Alanis. She said, “I luff Jaggard Leetle Pill. It vwas Alanis who teaches me Onglish. I luff her onger. I vas very ongry vhen I vas in New York.”
“Traumatised by the very thing I thought would be the balm”
Instant friends. She still has my prized denim skirt. Short with buttons down the front. Ah well – today’s arse has expanded beyond the boundaries of those buttons. I digress. We were speaking of Onger! Probably Alanis does it better, she did it so well she became an instant icon to angry betrayed women everywhere. Here’s Alanis telling ‘someone’ who was once close – “You oughta know!” It is dripping with sarcasm!
Why did so many people, more women than men but still – resonate with the rawness of her expression? Disempowerment – is not comfortable, not natural and definitely not authentic. Trying to live inauthentically is like trying to hold a blow up ball or inflated balloon under water, it keeps coming up – for air! Not all men resonated with her songs, some reacted violently and recoiled or actively put her down. Her singing bordered on screaming about the raw betrayal of connection. Nothing screams guilt louder than the inability to be with … someone speaking their truth.
“As though we as humans could be exempt from pain”
The crime being committed is not against the speaker. It is against your-Self. If you cannot listen or be with the truth of another – how can you listen or be with the darker parts of your own experience – like your Anger, and your feelings of deep betrayal. That finger of blame, if you look at it long enough – just like a compass that always points due north – will turn upon itself and show you the way home. If you can get through Judgement Day – you will find the person I searched for in Paris. The one you are, when no one else is watching. You.
Alanis of course moved slowly but moved through the raw betrayal she felt. She begins to feel the balm and ressurection power of vulnerability, surrender and forgiveness. Some of her insights into this process show up in “Thank U!”
Being an Artist is in many ways like being an activist for those experiences ‘the mainstream’ among us cannot digest or admit in to everyday awareness. How many times have you marginalised your pain? Your power? Your vulnerability? Your fear? But … most importantly, how many times have you suppressed your Rage? Understanding anger is one of the keys to transformation.
“Pain is a portal … beyond it is a sense of peace”
I miss Oprah. I know it all got a bit overwhelming for her with that grueling work schedule. I miss touching base, knowing Oprah was a regular on Day Time TV. She has not really been replaced. I recently found an interview on YouTube, Oprah speaking with Alanis Morisette about her journey from Angry Woman to k-now.
Her journey speaks for itself, but her path – just like each of our stories is also a map. “There might be some directions there, for you. But I guess – if you are an angry being – you probably don’t so much want help as you want to bash it out and ‘maintain the rage’. Aren’t you curious about what she might say?
Oprah and Alanis both speak of a book written by Harville Hendrix called “Keeping the Love You Find”. The ideas in this book are the most valuable ideas I have found in working with couples. It helps you understand why you choose the one you love, and why they choose you … AND also why everything goes pear-shaped … AND what you can do about it. This book is the best guide to building and maintaining couple relationships and worth checking out.
“Art is no different from prayer, Art is inextricably linked to the Inner Child”
Art is a way to build an Authentic Life. Alanis speaks of Art being transformation but not necessarily a path to healing unless there is a relationship to another human being or a connection involved. Tru dat!
Anger always always means something. If you are angry all the time, you may not know it. But the people around you will. This kind of anger is being caused by something.
Here is Alanis … k-now, she sings – is talking to ‘Younger-Self’. It is so weird when you pursue Authenticity – space and time, kind of collapse and bring your attention to the k-now. Truth.