Projection

Kari BrowningBlog, Healing

Projection is a defense mechanism in which individuals attribute characteristics they find unacceptable in themselves to another person.
 
For example, someone who is rude may accuse others of being rude, or someone who is being unfaithful may accuse another of being unfaithful, etc.
 
Jesus addressed this when he told people to get the log out of their own eye before trying to get the speck out of someone else’s eye.
 
The apostle Paul addressed this in writing to the Romans: “Judgmental criticism of others is a well-known way of escaping detection in your own crimes and misdemeanors.” (See Romans 2:1, Msg)
 
You may be projecting if you are feeling overly hurt and defensive and are quick to judge, blame, criticize, and attack someone else.
 
Carl Jung said that projecting our shadow unto others is at the root of most conflicts.
 
If someone is projecting their own issues onto you, try to understand why and show compassion. Is it fear? Is it insecurity? Is it shame? Is it guilt?
 
People tend to get defensive when you confront this type of behavior. Choose your words carefully and be gentle. ❤️

Mother Heart of God

Kari BrowningBlog, General

God is Spirit. He chooses to reveal himself in Scripture through language that is both masculine and feminine.
 
So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. (Genesis 1:27)
 
He created them male and female and blessed them. And he named them ‘Mankind’ when they were created. (Genesis 5:2)
 
We rarely hear messages on the “Mother heart of God,” although it says in Isaiah 66:13, “As a mother comforts her child, so I’ll comfort you.” In fact, God’s character and actions are revealed by feminine imagery in at least 26 places.
 
The grammatical gender of the word for “Spirit” is feminine in Hebrew (rūaḥ). In Greek the word for Spirit (pneuma) is grammatically neuter. There are some Christian churches who teach that the Holy Spirit is feminine based on the fact that both feminine nouns and verbs, as well as feminine analogies, are used by the Bible to describe the Spirit of God.
 
In the novel “The Shack,” God was portrayed as a woman. “I am neither male nor female,” Papa self-discloses in the novel, “even though both genders are derived from my nature. If I choose to appear to you as a man or woman, it’s because I love you. For me to appear to you as a woman and suggest you call me Papa is simply to mix metaphors, to help you keep from falling so easily back into your religious conditioning.”

Addiction

Kari BrowningBlog, Healing

We have been losing “the war on drugs” because we are not addressing the root issue, which is emotional pain.
 
According to Dr. Gabor Mate, an expert on addiction, children who endure trauma often grow up to have insufficient supplies of certain essential “reward” chemicals in the brain, such as endorphins and dopamine. This is why many self-medicate.
 
If we want to support healthy transformation, we need to provide proper nutrition, shelter, counseling, and compassionate caring.
 
Instead of spending multiple billions on programs that don’t work, we need to invest in programs that get results.
 
I saw an amazing model in Barnstaple, England. A small ministry partnered with their city to provide food, housing, therapy, etc. for those in need. They have a day center where they provide an excellent meal, laundry facilities, showers, computers, a gym, and support. They also partnered with the city to provide “safe sleep” in their building during the winter.
 
They also bought houses around the city where they facilitate therapeutic communities. The houses are paid for by a housing stipend that those who are homeless receive from the government.
 
They are transforming lives and their city. It is a beautiful model and prototype.

Shame and Disrespect

Kari BrowningBlog, Healing

We all know what it is like to be shamed or disrespected.
 
For some, it is an ongoing battle because they find themselves in an abusive relationship or in a job or church culture that traffics in shame.
 
When someone shames or humiliates you, the most important thing to remember is that no matter what you’ve done wrong, you don’t deserve to be shamed or treated with disrespect.
 
Take responsibility for any mistakes that you have made, but do not come into agreement with shaming messages. We all make mistakes and we learn from those mistakes.
 
Researchers tell us that when someone is attempting to shame us that they are oftentimes projecting their own issues. So, try not to take it personally.
 
Learn to set good boundaries and remove yourself from the situation if possible. Give yourself time to calm down and then have a conversation with the person about how their words made you feel and what you would like from them in the future.
 
If the behavior does not change, you may need to leave that relationship.
 
Get support if you need it.
 
You are worthy of love and respect. ❤️

Self-Abandonment

Kari BrowningBlog, Healing

Self-abandonment begins in childhood.

If your parents didn’t meet your emotional and/or physical needs in childhood, you may have formed a core belief that you are unworthy of love and belonging.

I have observed that we tend to repeat our childhood trauma. We repeatedly attract people who will not meet our needs because it’s familiar.

And we don’t know how to be there for ourselves, because no one was truly there for us as children.

We can learn how to love and value ourselves.

We can prioritize self-care.

We can learn how to set boundaries without feeling guilty.

We can learn how to be true to ourselves.

Trauma Bonds

Kari BrowningBlog, Healing

Trauma bonding is when a person stays in a destructive relationship and is loyal to the abuser.

Trauma bonds often occur in relationships with narcissists, relationships with addicts or alcoholics, or in domestic violence situations. They can also occur in cult-like religious groups.

If you experienced abuse from a parent or caregiver who also loved you, then you may have learned to associate love with abuse. So, you may be drawn to abusive relationships because the abuse feels like love.

There is always manipulation involved in these relationships. Your brain may even become addicted to the drama involved. Chemicals are released in the brain and you can become addicted the way a heroin addict becomes addicted.

You can break the cycle! It involves recognizing the core beliefs you formed and being transformed by the truth and the renewing of your mind. New neural pathways in the brain can be established. You can learn to form healthy, loving relationships.

The Honeymoon Effect

Kari BrowningBlog, General

Dr. Bruce Lipton, a cellular biologist, writes about the “Honeymoon Effect” and how it affects our health.

When we fall in love, our eyes twinkle. Our affection isn’t just limited to our partner; rather we are in love with life itself and it shows.

He urges us to rewrite our perceptions so we can create that head-over-heels in love state-of-mind again and again and again.

Lipton calls the quest to continuously feel “in love,” “the science of creating heaven on earth.” 💥

Science has spoken about such things, writes Lipton. For example, HeartMath researchers have found the impact of love itself is real and biochemically measurable.

According to Lipton, when subjects focus their attention on the heart and activate a core heart feeling, such as love, appreciation, or caring, these emotions immediately shift their heartbeat rhythms into a more coherent pattern. Increasing heartbeat coherence activates a cascade of neural and biochemical events that affect virtually every organ in the body.

Studies demonstrate that having heart coherence reduces the activity of the sympathetic nervous system—our fight-or-flight mechanism—while simultaneously increasing the healing activity of the parasympathetic nervous system. As a result, stress hormones are reduced and the anti-aging hormone DHEA is produced.

Love actually does make us healthier, happier, and causes us to live longer.

I have left “Christian City” and I am on a journey to find the Kingdom of Love, where I’ve heard that people fall in love over and over again with their beautiful King. He has become their “magnificent obsession.” Their eyes twinkle, they are love with life itself, and they experience “heaven on earth.”

Kingdom Culture

Kari BrowningBlog, General

The Kingdom of Love has a much different culture than what is found in most Evangelical churches.

In the Kingdom of Love, we are taught to bless and not to curse those that persecute us.

In the Kingdom of Love, we are taught to live in harmony with one another.

In the Kingdom of Love, we are taught not to repay anyone evil for evil.

In the Kingdom of Love, we are taught to live at peace with everyone.

In the Kingdom of Love, if your enemy is hungry, you feed him; if he is thirsty, you give him something to drink.

In the Kingdom of Love, you overcome evil with good.

The road is narrow and lonely to this beautiful Kingdom of Love. You have to leave the trappings of “Christian City” behind to find it.

Projection

Kari BrowningBlog, Healing

Projection is a defense mechanism where someone denies their faults and attributes them to others. They accuse you of doing things that they themselves are doing.

It often involves blame-shifting and shaming.

When someone projects, blame-shifts, or shames you, there is a temptation to explain yourself, defend yourself, or prove your point. If you get caught in this trap, you are wasting your precious time and energy.

Instead of defending yourself against a false accusation, the best thing is to not engage and walk away and end the toxic relationship if the person is unwilling to change.

Meet me There

Kari BrowningBlog, General

Jesus told us to beware of the leaven of the Pharisees (hypocrisy) and Herod (political power).

Churches and individuals that have been influenced by this “leaven” will demonize anyone who doesn’t agree with their beliefs. They begin to believe that “the other” is evil and that they are the enemy. It creates a culture of fear and distrust of anyone who is not a part of their group or their political party.

When religious hypocrisy merges with political power it can cause people to lose their soul and derail people from entering the Kingdom of Love.

The road to the Kingdom of Love is narrow. I’ve left “Christian City” behind and I am on a journey to find it, as it is where I want to live.