Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

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Rita R
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Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Rita R » Thu Dec 31, 2015 9:24 pm

Note: Just considering how to compose this post I feel I’ve had an important realization which has to do with addictions and acting on desires. I appreciate having a venue here to express these types of complex issues!

First, some context: I am a visual artist, always have been, never considered any other route for my life. Even when I was a preschooler and people would ask that question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I definitively told them I would be an artist. (Mind you, I was in a tiny, isolated town in Nebraska — a rural, farming state in the US. I had never met an artist or been to an art gallery or museum until I was 16.) I was an extremely shy, sensitive child — there’s a topic for a different thread — so coloring, drawing, making things were a great way to escape the noise, and emotional chaos of my household which was run by an alcoholic father and an angry, withdrawn mother trying to keep it all under control with sarcasm and criticism.

I’ve spent my life building my skills in painting, illustration and recently I’ve been learning the craft of writing screenplays and children’s books. I’ve had some success and become known as a realist landscape painter over the course of my career (“work” and “career” always feel like strange words to describe what I do).

Now for the addictive part… I’ve been aware for a long time of my wanting to “wow” people. With my art it was easy and felt like a nonthreatening way to connect when I was really too shy and scared to do it in person. Once I faced up to that fear and practiced talking with strangers, making friends in unfamiliar settings, that desire to wow people took on different, less recognizable manifestations but it still lingers — more like just wanting to be noticed, stand out. (I was overlooked a lot as a child as the youngest of 4 kids and completely unplanned/unwanted.) However, I don’t want to be loud, demanding, or overtly show off but the desire to be noticed is still there.

In my young adult years that addiction was easily fulfilled because I was quite pretty so I rarely went unnoticed even though most of the time I dressed in a way that didn’t accentuate my sexuality. Now, at 51, that form of attention is rare so I’ve had to feel through some of that addiction. It still lingers, I notice the feeling even in small things like meeting a new group of people online. I don’t want to “burst into the room” and say, “Look at me!” so I underplay myself. I notice that I didn’t reveal much about myself in my introduction to this forum. I feel that had to do with this addiction and I suppose it’s actually false humility. I didn’t get that until now. The injury which has come to light this morning is a deep sense of unworthiness. I feel it all boils down to this injury as the cause of these addictions.

Which brings me to the desire part. I LOVE to paint, draw, make images, speak that visual language, imagine fantastical characters and make up their worlds in written form. I love the result, the challenge, the sense of being connected to an expanded place… I love to create. But, in the past decade or so my active creating has been sporadic. When the global economy crashed in 2008, art sales all but stopped and so did my desire to keep at my business. It just didn’t make any sense anymore. Leading up to that, I’d been through a divorce during which my ex intended to destroy me financially and emotionally, specifically to make it impossible for me to remain in my house or continue making art to support myself and my son. He wanted to make me get a “real job.”

So, my art became part of a fight, something to prove I was worthy of… and that’s when the desire started to wane. Then the lack of sales created a sense of worthlessness, making it impossible to prove much of anything. Talk about Law of Attraction! But this was all before I knew anything about Divine Truth and was rebelling against any idea of God because of my previous experience of religion.

So, since then, I’ve been trying to reconnect with why I love to create, why it does make sense, why it does have purpose after that feeling of intense hopelessness and uselessness. A feeling of “what’s it all for?” I chose to enter a grad school program in the hopes that the instructors and the work required would remind me of my purpose. (there’s a whole other topic of an abusive system I won’t go into now) In the middle of getting a masters degree, I found the Divine Truth videos.

In the past 2 years I’ve really devoted a lot of time and energy to processing my emotions and becoming aware of (some of) my addictions. While the process has been enormously helpful and life-changing, I’ve created very little art and barely run my business at all. My studio has become my “church” because my main purpose is to connect with my feelings and God while I am out here. And that’s fabulous, yet I’d also like to get back to painting, writing and getting my creations out to the world. I have no idea how to do that last part in harmony with God’s laws and feel no desire to do it the old way (galleries, advertising, etc.)

In recent weeks, I’ve been connecting with the feeling I used to have while painting, even though I didn’t understand it — it’s a form of prayer, communicating with God. That has increased my desire to get back to my easel. Yet, I have this nagging feeling that, great, I’ll have another painting in my already full studio… but what do I do with it?

But here’s the real block (now I finally get to it!). I’ve been working on the children’s book since 2010. Everyone who sees the drawings or hears a synopsis of the story loves it, wants to get a copy when it’s published… except for one publisher who rejected it and some others who suggested changes. But I can’t bring myself to get it ready to send out again, or self publish it. I can barely even do a sketch let alone any sustained work on it. So I wonder if all this emotional processing is just a way to avoid whatever it is about this children’s story that I must be terrified of?? Or am I so influenced by spirits, is there some reason that they don’t want this book to ever get out into the world?

Oddly enough, I’ve had more fine art sales this year than in the last 10 combined even though I’ve spent very little time painting or connecting with the public. This adds another piece of confusion — was the illustration just a detour from really understanding the connection I have with God while painting and am I afraid to dive into that?

I’ve never had this kind of resistance/confusion before about this area of my life! I’ve been trying to feel my way through it but feel terribly ill equipped and haven’t made much progress. I would appreciate any feedback or insights you kind souls can provide.

If you’ve made it through this very long post, thank you! I appreciate your care. I am now resisting an urge to go back through and edit this down so as not to ask too much you all, (back to that false humility) but I realize that if you’re not drawn to read this you won’t, so I can trust you to make that choice :)

much appreciation,
Rita R.

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Rita R
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Rita R » Thu Dec 31, 2015 9:26 pm

My apologies for the double post. I was trying to edit the previous post because of a couple of repeated sentences at the top due to writing it in a word doc and pasting here. I haven't been able to fine how to delete the duplicate post.

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Amanda Stracey
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Amanda Stracey » Fri Jan 01, 2016 8:16 am

Hi Rita

If I can offer a suggestion that you have attracted or you wanted the double posting to possibly draw attention to yourself or demand attention as you have stated in your own post or some other reason.i could be wrong but a similar event happened to me to really expose my rebellion to authority and not wanting to abide by rules and instructions or not wanting to he told what to do!

I've been mega ashamed when my addictions and demands have been exposed but have had to accept that I really want them and my soul desires will dominate. I'm hoping I'll get to the point where I look forward to having all my sin exposed!

Hope that helps

Amanda

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Nicky
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Nicky » Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:42 pm

Hi Rita

Just a note to say that you cannot edit or delete any posts that you make for a number of reasons that I have explained here:

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=195

I have now deleted your other duplicate thread so others won't get confused as to which thread is most appropriate to post in.

Thanks
Nicky

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Rita R
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Rita R » Sat Jan 02, 2016 2:11 am

Hi Nicky and Amanda,

Once I realized I couldn't edit or delete my duplicate post I thought that it was probably by design and a wise provision. Thank you Nicky for deleting the double post for me and the explanation about the purpose for that provision. I had a good chuckle at myself for exactly the reason you pointed out, Amanda -- two posts would get noticed. :lol: Yes, a little embarrassing but also perfect, yes? Have to love those subtle LofA events. At least I know I am correct about that injury/addiction after all.

Thanks for taking the time to let me know that you interpreted it the same way I did.

Rita R.

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maureen
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by maureen » Sun Jan 03, 2016 11:32 pm

Hi Rita,

I have a couple of thoughts after reading your post.

1. These are questions that you can bring to God...which I find to be a much more direct place to go to in search of clarity when I am struggling with soul level feeling issues like "Why was I born with passions that I don't feel supported by the world for having?" Why do I have passions that I can't seem to financially support myself when I engage?","Why did God create me with this things in my soul and then put me inside of this world where I feel unable to be who I am?", etc.

2. As an artist myself, I spent a lot of my life projecting feelings of injustice and demands onto others "out there" that they were responsible somehow for not resolving the fact that I did not want to nor could I seem to find a way to support myself with my art. These are expectation that they resolve this for me or make up for the effects of something I have not been with to face up to.

3. What has helped me to stop doing that, is to work with God to help me turn and take 100% responsibility for my own financial life (even if it means moving out of the "artist" identity as my career at this time). From this place, where I am now earning the money I need to support my life (as your ex husband was correctly pointing you toward doing back then and you felt/feel was unjust and cruel of him to do yet it was actually in harmony with God's truth on the issue of personal responsibility)...I can feel how that is much more loving to both me and to the world around me. And, I can see from this new place how unloving it is to demand that the world "see" the value of my “work”, etc.

With God's help and a desire in my soul to become more loving and to face emotionally the sins I could feel I was committing around these things, I have been shown/discovered/felt/faced emotions inside of my soul all my life about the unloving nature of the material world I was born into and how I did not want to have to "go in there" to make a living...and I have seen the truth of my feelings that being an artist somehow should exempt me from having to work my way through those issues about an unloving and hopeless feeling world and "God putting me here" because an artist is "special" somehow and should be able to live above the fray of careers, materialism, money, etc. A lot of beliefs I carried that are all out of harmony with love of self and others that I can see now as demands sent out to either individuals or the world at large that they resolve these conflicts we feel with God about our fate and our gifts and passions and the lost and dark nature of so much going on around careers and money that we inherited as we came into the world that we often blame God (or other people) for (until we work our way sincerely through these issues).

So, those I find are more fruitful directions to look toward for answers. I am finding that as I do this and work to take responsibility for my life fully, that, ironically, I am creating more art than ever and have lots of new passions and desires emerging regarding Divine Truth and Love and art that I want to pursue into the future and creativity I hope to engage myself and with others that is in harmony with growth, love and gifting and God and these teachings.

Hope that helps. I think it is good to look at the feelings of being "special" and the demands you project now (and have been projecting probably since your early life since the time came for you to "take responsibility" and "mature" and "grow up" and you did not do so) onto others around taking responsibility for the gifts God gave you and begin to take these things to God who will help you sort them out. I found I had to be willing to start again at "the bottom of the world"...because I had never been willing to build a healthy responsible enough foundation for my own personal material life to give me what I needed to be able to do art without needing/demanding anything from anyone for/from my creations or because I was an artist. I think this is a big issue with artists...the belief that we don't have the skills or shouldn't have to "go in there" to that "lower world" to get money. So we abdicate responsibility for our lives, our livelihood and our passions (and that gets displaced on to others).

But, to expect others to do that, and support us or buy stuff they might not want....is unloving and is a demand from our soul toward others trying to manipulate or push them in someway to take responsibility for our welfare. Which God does not want them to do. God wants us to take responsibility for ourselves and our passions and to not displace anything about these things onto the world around us. And God, I am experiencing for sure, will help you through all of this if you go to him/her with your confusions and fears. for our welfare. Which God does not want them to do. God wants us to take responsibility for ourselves and our passions and to not displace anything about these things onto the world around us. And God, I am experiencing for sure, will help you through all of this if you go to him/her with your confusions and fears.

With God's help, and a willingness to be humble and feel these types of truths about what we have been up to...we can grow to have the type of relationship to our passions God wants us to have. Where we take 100% responsibility for them.

Nowadays, I work three night shifts (where I can sleep) doing residential care (a job I threw a few tantrums about having to take at first~part of the process of those error based beliefs being felt and ultimately leaving me)...but this job has supported me for three years now (and I have learned so much there) and it is allowing me to finish a large series of paintings and to learn about and create an infrastructure to sell them. This will end up being a seven year project of painting and setting up a business, and I can see that it would have been wrong for me to expect anyone else to have carried me during this time. God will provide us the way to be responsible and creative and loving to others if we want to learn. So that we can all embrace and grow our passions into the future. Yay for God!

Off to paint!

Love,
Maureen

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Rita R
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Rita R » Tue Jan 05, 2016 1:37 am

Hello Maureen,

I’ve been reflecting on what you wrote in response to my questions about desire waning after some traumatic events. While I agree with some of your initial statements such as bringing these questions to God — absolutely and that applies to all questions — I feel that in most of your post you were projecting your own feelings and injuries onto me. Here are two examples:
But, to expect others to do that, and support us or buy stuff they might not want....is unloving and is a demand from our soul toward others trying to manipulate or push them in someway to take responsibility for our welfare.
I think it is good to look at the feelings of being "special" and the demands you project now (and have been projecting probably since your early life since the time came for you to "take responsibility" and "mature" and "grow up" and you did not do so) onto others around taking responsibility for the gifts God gave you
My post was more about what happens to the desire to create after traumatic events, working through emotions, and what sort of addictions might block desire.

I’m confronting a fear right now in posting this response because I tend to believe other people’s assessments and discount my own. This is due to experiencing a lot of attack for contradicting other peoples’ opinions with my own interpretations, feelings and opinions. In other words, I’ve been told often and angrily how wrong I am, so I’m risking that outcome here. Also, I see people deflecting feedback all the time, so I am always trying to absorb what I hear… but sometimes it just doesn’t apply no matter how hard I try to integrate it. That’s a big lesson for me, to be discerning about the feedback I receive and the condition of the person giving it.

Yet I am grateful, this is a very helpful Law of Attraction event for me because it highlights the fact that some of the trauma still exists in me. I actually tend to be over-responsible and take care of others because of various injuries I have. I’ve spent this year working through a lot of those injuries and setting boundaries for myself and other people to be self-responsible and either contribute consistently to the household or leave.

Your post is so interesting because my ex-husband is a psychologically and emotionally abusive man and he actually had me believing that I wasn’t capable of doing business in the world (what you mentioned as the “lower world”) even though I had been doing so already for 18 years. (I started very young -- grew up and took full responsibility for myself.) I even moved and reestablished my business successfully three times to follow his job changes. I’ve been working all these years to undo that brainwashing (and probably a great deal of spirit influence plus false beliefs about being a "good wife" which set me up for the abuse). Top that with a dramatic change in the art market in which many successful artists were left in a panic. I most definitely have issues to work through regarding all of this, but my main point is to suggest you look a little further at what might be yours to take full responsibility of.

Rather than going into any more specifics, I’ll just say thank you for prompting me to see myself more clearly and even with greater humility... although I'm having difficulty calling it that, another injury brought to the surface.

And after writing my initial post, I did a study for a new painting which I’ll start tomorrow and feel excited about. So movement is happening.

All the best,
Rita R.

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maureen
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by maureen » Tue Jan 05, 2016 3:49 am

Hi Rita,

I do feel that what I wrote about your projections, demands and issues of personal responsibility around your art are accurate and that is why I took the time to write what I did to you. These things were/are palpable to me coming from you as I read your first post.

Me responding was actually an act of love where I took time from my own life to share what I feel about what you shared there and what I have learned so far and continue now to discover about some of the issues around art, addictions, creativity and personal responsibility for our passions and gifts. Things I am understanding more as I am growing on this path. The only reason I did so is because you asked for people to share insights with you about this issue (which I now feel was not truly wanted~at least not what I offered there to you).

You obviously don't feel that any of what I said has value or applies in any way to your life and is just me projecting untrue things onto your life things because of my low “soul condition” (at least that seems to be what you are saying there to me) that you are too healthy to entertain. Because you are so humble.

It is obvious that you disagree and feel that nothing I said has any value other than revealing to the world how screwed up I am or something and that you are too healthy to indulge me.

But, the truth is, that I was just offering some genuine things I have found helpful in my own journey that I thought may be helpful to you as well. The details my be different, but the issues are the same I feel. That's all. That was my true motive. To give a gift.

What you conclude as me just misreading and projecting onto you a bunch of things that are issues in my soul that I am not looking at... does not feel true to me here in this situation. I do feel those things about your relationship to your art and life are true still. But, I don't think you need to agree with me. Or to put me down for feeling what I do and trying to offer some things that I felt could be helpful to you from a place of love.

Where you feel I was coming from (confused and just wanting to project onto someone my unhealed things) that is not the place I was in at all when I wrote those words. In fact I don't feel a need to do that. I had other things I could have spent that time doing. I was not motivated by a desire to project onto you things I am avoiding...it just is not what that was about for me emotionally. I just wanted to offer some assistance to you because I felt I could. And, I don't need it to be true for you at all. It was a gift that's all.

I felt your addictive energy and projections around your work and relationship to your art from a place of someone who is in your world feeling that from the outside and this is what I was sharing with you about. Where I have had some success with similar emotional demands and such.

But, it is fine too that you don't believe you have any of those things going on.

I won't respond further to this thread at this time. Because, it feels really off and unloving to myself to do so.
And, I don't feel angry with you. I feel more sad that I responded sincerely to someone who I feel is willing not only completely dismiss what I offered, but who is willing to infer quite a few things about me and my motives and soul condition publicly here that I don't feel are true. And, even if they were true, your assessment of me was not solicited.

Cheers,
Maureen

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Rita R
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Rita R » Tue Jan 05, 2016 4:53 am

Hi Mareen,

My apologies for anything that sounded ungrateful or dismissive. I did recognize the gift in your post and perhaps I'm not feeling you correctly. I realized a little while ago that I do abdicate power and although related, that has a different flavor than abdicating responsibility so maybe it's just a matter of disagreeing on terms. I am not practiced enough in feeling people clearly to know your condition and haven't had experience of you before now, so discerning clear feedback is something I need practice with. I will reflect further on what you offered after feeling through more of my emotions around it. I recognize that my reactions can be very distorted and I rarely know the correct times to trust vs. stand up for myself. I had a physiological fear reaction in reading this last post from you, so clearly, I have lots to work through.

I may not have stated it clearly before, but I was/ am genuinely grateful for an interaction with you. Thank you again. All of this is a very good lesson for me.

I'll refrain from posting about it further as well and take more time to observe and learn from the rest of the forum.

Best,
Rita R

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Marjorie
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Re: Addiction and it’s impact on Desire

Post by Marjorie » Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:18 am

Hi Maureen,

I must say that I felt the same way as Rita about your response to her initial question.
I felt that you missed the point of her question and was mostly questioning why you could not live of your art.
I also see some sort of mirror effect between yourself and Rita. She is an artist around the same age as yourself with success in what she does and you seem to have completely dismissed this facts.

Your second reply back to Rita was angry in my view and your response seems to be related to an injury you have regarding being misunderstood:

viewtopic.php?f=21&t=647&p=2218#p2218

With Regards,
Marjorie

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