Illusions of healing

“The way in which we approach healing (or healing exercises, like therapy or forgiveness or meditation) is [clouded by] our own protective self. [For example], perfectionists use [spiritual and healing practices] to become what they think an ideal spiritual person should look like, eternally seeking to be “good enough” for spiritual love. Codependents use it to dismiss their own needs and emotions, deciding they must rescue and help even more people in order to achieve selfless sainthood. Narcissists use it to start cults and show others how worldly and wise they are. Borderlines use it to seek sympathy and validation from a higher power for their poor decisions, and then feel betrayed when their decisions inevitably backfire. Avoidants use it to stay lost in their imagination, viewing their own healing through the lens of invented characters.

“The protective self convinces you that if you “do” this thing or if someone else “does” something, you will feel good. … Healing exercises like therapy or forgiveness or meditation [become yet another] external measure of worth. … In this book, I’m encouraging you to stop “doing” and instead sit with the deeply uncomfortable, frustrating sensations that arise when you don’t take action.”

Jackson MacKenzie, Whole Again (p. 23-24)