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Re: [steiner] The Golf Fish Man

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  • LilOleMiss
    Hi, Mathew! It s nice to meet the man behind the Work of Words. ... Thank you, but I must disagree here. There is nothing whatsoever I could possibly add to
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 5, 2002
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      Hi, Mathew! It's nice to meet the man behind the Work of Words.

      Mathew Morrell wrote:
      > Dear Sheila,
      >
      > Thanks for your insights into the Sirius Chronicles. I have a
      > suspicion that you may understand certain elements of the plot better
      > than the writer himself;

      Thank you, but I must disagree here. There is nothing whatsoever I
      could possibly add to your very insightful understanding.

      in particular, the psychiatric phenomena of
      > Ed MacIntosh's condition post Red Lion. You said that you were a Med
      > student learning psychiatry and have fist hand experience dealing
      > with what I imagine to be severe cases of mental illness.

      You're right here, Mathew, with psychiatry being mandatory in
      medical training and naturally even further learning and
      experience being required should one wish to specialize in this
      realm. Personally, I agreed almost immediately with a statement
      directed to us our first day when the head psychiatrist stated
      firmly, "Fraud was absolutely TOTALLY insane, and matters have
      gone from bad to worse among psychiatrists!" As you might know,
      unless one approaches all facets of medicine with Anthroposophy,
      it is raw blatent materialism at its worst.

      I, too,
      > have experience with the mentally ill through the work I did in my
      > early twenties when working with Catholic Community Services, C.C.S.,
      > which is a not-for-profit organization that sends volunteers into the
      > field to assist elderly and disabled people; bathing, house cleaning,
      > laundry, grocery shopping were duties I performed, hence my title:
      > Chore Worker. The pay was minimum wage. More often than not C.C.S.
      > gave me clients who were mentally ill. This was because I was one of
      > the few men involved with C.C.S. and most of the women were afraid to
      > work with such people who could be aggressive and un-predictable.
      > Some of my clients had criminal histories (ala Sling Blade).
      > Needless to say, I was in my element and very much enjoyed the work
      > despite the disgust and fear that sometimes went along with it. The
      > first job they assigned me was to "clean-up" the home of a young,
      > schizophrenic man who was living virtually like an animal, alone in a
      > small basement apartment in Olympia, Washington. The apartment
      > smelled exactly like a monkey cage and every square inch of carpet
      > was covered in cigarette buts, beer bottles, food wrappers, and, here
      > and there, plastic Pepsi bottles filled with urine. (The toilet
      > wasn't working.) It took a while to stop the gagging reflex in my
      > throat before I could start the long task of spiffing the place up so
      > that it looked half-way presentable. That took about two hours a day
      > for a week.

      WOW! What a vividly and correctly painted picture of an incredible
      number of cases! I can so easily visualize, smell, hear and sense
      your experiences! You're really to be commended with huge bravos
      galore! Such situations continue to exist, as you no doubt
      realize, some a bit better and some a bit worse, but overall, your
      experience seems par for the course. The fact that you willingly
      volunteered and went about your work says very much in your favor,
      while I had no choice. These types of situations were the first 2
      months of "on-hands apprentice introduction" my training gave,
      followed by worse in one sense, yet deeply loving and
      compassionate in others. I shall never forget a single moment of
      these times, often coming close to losing my very life while
      training myself to never show any of my hopefully non-detectable
      fear whatsoever. I loved so many of my patients and received love
      in return, and while these interchanges were non-verbal, there is
      little mistaking its existence. While I didn't limit myself to
      mental "disorders" by any means, one readily and often meets it
      face to face in various situations, medically or not.
      >
      > There was one un-deniable thing I learned from my clients: the
      > mentally ill have a strange, powerful connection to the supersensible
      > realm.

      Ahah! Absolutely! This is so striking, I often wondered if the
      "crazies" weren't running loose while the sane were incarcerated!
      I often thought of something Steiner said about people being
      considered insane if they said or thought or did such and such,
      and the matter at hand escapes me for the moment, although you're
      no doubt aware of it. This world the so-called mentally ill live
      in is extraordinarily rich in matters I'm only able to read about
      and hopefully understand via Steiner!

      One afternoon I was on driving through Olympia, when the
      > brakes of my Volkswagon Rabbit started to become very "cushiony"
      > and "soft." You could press down on the foot petal, but to little
      > effect. If I remember right, I was crazy enough to keep driving ---
      > crazy because Olympia sits on the bay, at the bottom of two steep
      > hills, requiring that I slam on the breaks in order to come to a
      > smooth stop. My client lived on, I think it was, Peach Street, in a
      > grungy apartment building occupied by a lot of students, musicians
      > and down and outs. (In fact, at the time, a very poor, heroin
      > addicted Curt Cobain was living in a house in front of the same
      > apartment building.) My client was a huge but gentle man in his mid-
      > thirties who had a fanatic love for his gold fish, which he kept in a
      > 40 gallon tank. Every once in a while a fish would die and he would
      > become upset, blaming it on some sort of government conspiracy.
      > Supposedly, he had fried his brain with L.S.D. Now he was living in
      > seclusion, over-medicated, spending his days chain smoking in a
      > dreary, half-awake delirium, and sleeping probably 16 hours a day off
      > and on. It was during one of these deliriums that he started
      > mumbling incoherently about my Volkswagon Rabbit. I think I was
      > doing dishes at the time, and listened attentively as he went on
      > about my car and my brakes and how I should be careful. Since I had
      > not mentioned my car troubles, I was pretty stunned.
      >
      > Just a little story,

      Mathew, "just a little story?" I don't think so - perhaps better
      "just a little comment derived from a realm where he was more at
      home," I'd say. This is the type of insight/whatever I, too, have
      observed time after time, and I'm not even limited to working with
      the mentally ill per se, but they, too, need medical help for
      other conditions outside that realm.

      It sounds as though you live in that incredibly beautiful area of
      Washington state I love so dearly, and not far from my daughter in
      Seattle. I lived in your state for close to a year and have seldom
      experienced what I grew to know in those almost other-world rain
      forests where the purple digitalis stands tall in its glory among
      the rich thickly growing green of ferns hiding beneath enormous
      trees sun has difficulty penetrating, and through which bubbling
      streams and waterfalls dare to wander. I am down the coast south
      of you in California by Monterey Bay, a far different world
      lacking the warmth of flora and fauna you so gloriously share a
      world with.

      Viva Le *Sirrius Chronicles* - I'm a greedy reader, so fair
      warning! :) Thanks for the great introduction.

      Sheila

      >
      > Mathew Morrell (mmorrell1)
      >
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