As you wake up to the ways in which you have been neglecting yourself, this ritual will be very helpful. Remember the Japanese practice of kintsigu? There is a psychological concept of selftherapy that expresses this same idea. A largely unknown Polish psychoanalyst and psychologist, Kazimierz Dabrowski, who was prolific between 1929 and 1981, was friends with Abraham Maslow, among other noted psychologists. Dabrowski developed the Theory of Positive
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Disintegration. Like kintsigu, this theory is a paradox. Dabrowski saw value in “falling apart” and beauty in allowing ourself and our fixed perspectives to “disintegrate” for growth to occur. We don’t need to hold it together all of the time. There are moments when we may need to just fall apart. In fact, this is necessary to grow and become a better version of ourself, according to Dabrowski.
We live in a society where the pursuit of perfection and excellence is paramount, and when we do have moments of despair or feel out of control, we experience feelings of guilt and shame. We don’t expose our vulnerabilities because it challenges society’s norm of perfectionism and the myopic pursuit of excellence. Of course we want to be the best version of ourself; however, along the way it is necessary to give ourself permission to enact radical inclusivity and hold with compassion those aspects of ourself that are not considered beautiful by today’s standards. This self-therapy ritual is an opportunity to “fall apart” and put ourself back together again with a realignment of values, based on our inner beliefs, and a renewed connection to our individual essence. The outcome is a new pathway toward a higher level of intrapersonal development and knowing.
Begin this ritual by gazing upon the image of the broken teacup above. Title the image an event or experience in your life where you felt as if you “fell apart.” In the spaces or cracks between the pieces, write what you learned from that experience that caused you to fall apart, and how it changed you. These are your “golden threads,” the light you have gleaned from a challenging experience. This is how you put yourself back together after having fallen apart.