I was talking at a recovery meeting just last night about “staying small” and being happy that there are 16 people that follow this blog. That conversation was in context of a reading/poem we were discussing which led to the work Mate, and those he works with, has done which has to bring Childhood Trauma into a brighter light both in the recovery world and in all sorts of dysfunction/pain. When I got off the meeting I received a notice that there now 17 followers of the blog. The 17th person is from Canada.

Wisdom tells me I am nothing. Love tells me I am everything. Between the two my life flows.

by Sri Nisargradatta

Sometimes I have a knee jerk reaction to what goes on in the US thinking that Canada is utopia. Then I am reminded of the graves and suffering from residential schools, tar sand oil, military involvement with the US and others..

Bruce Alexander, Gabor Mate (after surviving the Holocaust in Hungary) work in Vancouver. Along with The City of Vancouver I feel that they humanize people who have suffered the consequences of their use of substances and behaviors to find short term relief from their pain.

The Nisargradatta poem gave me pause to self-examine the vastness between nothingness and everything. I am a random walk thinking person. I believe that I did not choose my beginnings/family or were they chosen for me. I did not decide back in my early teens to create an addictive cycle of gambling. When firmly entrenched in that cycle I did make choices. Those choices seemed, and in many cases were, adaptive. One example is the choice to gamble when faced with self-esteem issues both inter-personally and professionally. I was not making healthy choice though in some goofy way those choices were giving me an opportunity to build resiliency and to find better choice/paths. The saddest part of that journey was the pain I caused others.

in peace and love

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