On the playgrounds of the world children spontaneously exhibit six basic human emotions. In order to keep the fun and play going, each emotion is dealt with in a fluid manner. When play stops, it is usually because one feeling dominates the scene. Play and general fun cannot continue until that one feeling has been dealt with in a wholesome manner.

The 'playground' of the last paragraph is a metaphor of human psychological functioning. Ordinarily we go through our lives with various feelings flowing right on through so we can continue our love affair with life. When one feeling dominates, however, the fun of life becomes twisted.

And yet, the 'playground' is more than a metaphor. It is a literal lesson of how life is best approached. Let us imagine sitting on a bench at a park where children play anywhere in the world. Immediately we notice several things. Children are in constant movement. They frequently make joyful sounds. The third thing we notice is that their breathing is full and free. Happiness appears to be the normal state of the child.

We study a baseball game in order to get a better understanding of natural humanity. The batter comes up to the plate to swing at the ball with an air of anticipation. Analyzing closely, we can see that he is excited, one of the six basic emotions. The baseball almost hits him in the head and we see a wave of scare crossing his face. If he strikes out, we observe a measure of sadness as if he has let his team down. If he gets a hit, he is happy. If he hits a triple and is joyfully running around the bases and an infielder trips him, our runner immediately has a flow of rage, shouts angrily, then runs on. If another batter gets a hit, our runner scores and is greeted by teammates who hug him in a loving fashion.

-- Let's add up some of our insights from the playground.

* Children at play move their bodies.

* Expressions of their joy are in gleeful sounds.

* They breathe fully as they play.

* Happiness appears to be the natural state of humans.

* Anticipation of the next piece of joy is seen in excitement.

* Scare occurs when there is threat to a person.

* Tender loving hugs occur when there is celebration.

* Sadness happens when there is a loss.

* Intruding into another person's space brings forth anger.

Our observations conclude that there are six basic human emotions: Sadness, Anger, Scare, Happiness, Excitement, and Tenderness. Using abbreviations like children do in order to learn, let's create an acrostic:SASHET. That way we can remember the six basic feelings for the next test that life give us: "Okay, what am I feeling? Hmmm, SASHET. Is it Sadness, Anger, Scare, Happiness, Excitement, or Tenderness?"

SASHET is pronounced sa-shay and sounds like 'sachet'.

Possibly the most important thing that we have noted on our playground is that children keep joy alive by keeping the six feelings in flow. For instance, sadness is felt and flows right on through. A little girl breaks her doll and cries until the tears are all gone. A boy is scared by a snake, screams and shakes, and runs on back to the game. The crowd excitedly cheers, smiles, looks around approvingly, and sits down for the next option. The manager yells at the umpire in an angry manner, returns to the dugout, and moves on to the next piece of business. People are running all over the playground making happy noises ready for the next event. Loving tenderness is expressed by mothers and fathers watching their children, providing colored Band-Aids when there is a scratch, and showing great pride in everything from a child's running to a team hug at the end of the game. Our big lesson here is that feelings, to be real, effective, and productive for the continuation of fun, must flow.

We also noticed that a halt to the festivities almost inevitably was caused by a blocked feeling. Examples occurred in moments all over the field. When a boy fell on the jungle gym, everyone was scared, became motionless, and held their breaths in fear that he may have broken his neck. When a bully started picking on a smaller child, people bristled with anger, their hands tightened, and they wanted to 'teach him a lesson'. The flow stopped for a few moments until the bully shook hands and settled down. Then a horrible scary thing occurred. A girl on the softball team broke her leg. Everyone felt sad and knew that it meant she would have pain and would be unable to play the rest of the season. A melancholy settled over the park as grief extended over a longer period of time.

The playground teaches that fluid feelings are desirable, but that there are natural occasions when fluidity is stopped by certain situations that arise. Those situations are frequently traumatic. Something sudden occurs, possibly negative, and fun is interrupted. We return to the idea of the playground as metaphor and realize that the same thing happens to adults. As natural children we all moved fluidly and felt until something stopped our dynamic process. Traumas happen. Situations arise where play stops and emotional blockages occur. Stoppages are inevitable.

There is one final lesson we note about feelings on playgrounds. Feelings have a similarity to a seesaw. Happiness seems to be on one end of the teeter-totter and sadness seems to be on the other end. Anger is on one side of the fulcrum and tenderness is on the other. Excitement is anticipation of the future while scare dreads the future. In other words, we have three distinct sets: happiness and sadness, anger and tenderness, scare and excitement. They have some kind of unique relationship. It appears that children can switch scare into excitement, that grown-ups sometimes get most angry at their children due to feeling so tender and loving to them, and that happiness and sadness are polar opposites.

We are ready to leave our playground now and venture forth to the land of grown-up emotional health. We should not, however, think that leaving the park means leaving what children experienced. Actually, each of us retains in our bodies lessons learned long ago. If children ridiculed us because of our failures in hopscotch due to an awkward developmental phase, we later tend to fear hopping on the various squares (despite becoming smoothly athletic as we grew up). It is possible to link, in the background of our minds, a negative anchor to playing a certain game because anger always seemed to erupt. And, sometimes we leave behind our happiness, excitement and tenderness - characteristic of us at younger ages - and become serious adults, scared to play and laugh and sing.

The purpose of this writing is to give people interested in the emotional life a boost in returning to the mindless joy of playing like children in the park. The goal is well satisfied if someone reads and returns to fluid living. There is no hesitation in saying that life is best lived when each of the feelings has its normal run through bodies in the course of a day. It is okay to cry and admit sadness, confess scare and shake it out, be angry when there is insult, have a running happiness underlying one's entire experience, be excited and have the freedom to run and shout, and, always, be able to melt into tenderness at each opportunity. Fluidity is good; being stuck is not. Our goal is to provide a basic introduction through which anyone desiring psychological freedom can have a beginning map.

Blockages of Fluidity

The normal flow of feelings is stopped while we are children in many areas of our lives. It is a great therapeutic mistake, however, to think that the only reason is failures of parents. Reasons may be as natural as the birth process. Some reasons are gender based, some are developmental, and many are caused simply by the way children think.

A few children on the edge of the playground did not freely laugh and play. Some girls and boys were quiet due to family abuse. Some withdrew the moment they heard loud noises. Some seemed to be automatically scared of body contact. Others appeared ashamed of their bodies. Some walked the same way their mother or father walked, some clung to a parent's side and avoided aggressive play, and others looked sad and forlorn. An occasional kid who was always primed for a fight ... emotional lessons all right there on the playground ...

In sum, many feelings are not flowing for some kids early in life, and, if we were to watch over time, each and every child fails to exhibit feeling flow in some situations. So, from the start, let's admit that humanity has a problem with happily flowing mental health - not just the occasional misfit.

We must explain, however, how feeling blockages occur. No doubt, in such a small monograph, we shall omit some causation, but let's give it a try anyway.

Parents. Unfortunately, the popular press places too much blame at the feet of the former generation. Still, there are many ways parents stop fluidity. "Mussentouchit, Stop that!, You cry and I'll really give you something to cry about, Baby!, Scaredy cat, Shut up!" -- a normal dose of emotional instructions given daily to children by parents. There are also damning appellations: "She's my hell cat; angry about everything. He's my timid child; jumps at the drop of a hat. She's my sweetikins. He's a sadnik"

Words are incredibly powerful tools for children in self-definition. A child cannot look into a mirror and discover identity. To a major degree that comes from the words of respected loved ones. Also, a child's identity is based on two additional factors. One is the sheer copying of the models of the parents. If mom reveals a "Poor Me" attitude, it is possible for the child to copy that as one mode of being in the world. Another is the playing of a given feeling in order to gain strokes (negative or positive) from a parent. If daddy loves for the child to be excited, as a grown-up, she may always be on a buzz.

Words. Models. Deeds. Yes, feeling flow in children is stopped by all kinds of abusive deeds. Sexual abuse, physical abuse and religious abuse are three that come immediately to mind. A high percentage of little girls are abused by a brother, father, uncle, grandfather, or stranger. Frequently, the abuse is followed by a threat to "not tell" lest something worse emerge. Can you imagine how fluidity in regard to SASHET is affected? What if you were beaten the moment you cried until you became stoic? Or ridiculed and abandoned if you ever mentioned scare? Or shamed due to religious beliefs saying you were "selfish" if you were playing excitedly?

In some homes there is a dead atmosphere so joyful sounds are never heard, music unplayed, and games forbidden. There are violent homes where the father brutalizes anyone who makes noise. There are television homes where the agenda of a show pre-empts the spontaneity of a child. There are a million stories of moods in households and they all have in common the suppression of ordinary feeling expression.

It is unfortunately true that parents, willingly or thoughtlessly, contribute to transforming an ecstatic joyous child into an adult who has trouble being fluid again.

Situational. Imagine having asthma so badly that you were frightened to let go and be excited lest you die. That happens. It is not a parent-based reason for losing fluidity. Just attending school and adjusting to a teacher's discipline (necessary in dealing with thirty kids) causes a great loss of spontaneity of feelings. Indoctrination in religion may teach that excitement is sexual, anger is violence, and scare a lack of faith.

There are situations caused by physical ailments. Who is to blame if a child cannot get out of the womb, arrives through a C-section bruised and battered, and is imprinted with a fear of being adventurous? Or mother dies when a child is age four and no one explains? Imagine that at nine months of age your mother is hospitalized, you feel abandoned, and have a great difficulty the remainder of life allowing yourself to be tender and close. Or being in a car accident, having members of your family killed, and how that affects the ability to be loose and happy?

There are many situations in the normal process of growing up that stop the natural flow of feelings.

Developmental. A child who did not receive enough touch and attention as a baby may turn against his skin, natural sensations, and, as the years pass, deny any feelings. If a problem occurs during the exploratory age of six months to two years, a child may project all causation outside herself, so much so that it is okay for others to feel and express, but not her. At two a child may so discount others by saying "No!", that he begins to discount relationships, and has a special problem with tenderness. At age four children have great imaginations and can devise such schemes as "If I'm always happy, my mother will be happy", "If I'm angry at my alcoholic father, I'll kill him", or "I'll never cry like my mother does". At age six another child may be so socialized by school that she acts parental, leaves feelings for 'children', and begins to take care of others.

It is critical to understand that, in the normal progression of growing up, all of us stumble at given ages and give up fluid feelings. If we only blame others, we make a great mistake that may grant us a sense of moral superiority, but will not return fluidity of SASHET. For that, we have to understand that some things simply happen. Period. The one who awakens realizes that what is now important is learning to get back on that playground all over again. If a philosopher says that such a view means 'narcissism', he or she has not listened closely to the entire story of feelings. The reason is that, when you are close to your real feelings, you rejoin humanity, have compassion, and join others in creating a better world.

Gender based. As boys grow up, they are shamed on the playground by other boys for being scared ("Sissy!) or sad ("Cry baby!"). Later, grown men have difficulty admitting scare or sadness. Boys also cover their nurturing instincts by teasing and often later have difficulty being nurturing and tender. Girls are imprinted by society in different ways. They are sometimes told that anger is not "lady-like", that excitement and tenderness turn boys on and should be hidden.

This brief glance at gender caused stoppages of normal fluid feelings only touches the surface. Stoppages vary culture by culture. If a woman shows anger in some cultures she can be beaten severely. If a man shows scare, he can be labeled a coward. If a woman gets powerfully angry at work, she may be termed "a bitch". If a man does the same conduct, he may be described as "forceful". There are monumental pressures in every society that define emotional lives of men and women.

Decisions. We know of former clients who decided against certain feelings all on their own. One person thought he should never be happy because there were starving people in the world. Another said she would not be happy until her parents were happy. Still another felt sad due to the death of a puppy and decided that he would never be tender and love anyone again.

In our decades of doing therapy we have been astounded at how many severe stoppages of fluid feelings occur simply because a child decided against one of them, or even in some cases, all of them. A person may decide at a mother's grave that he will never be vulnerable and tell anyone what he feels - ever again. A little girl may decide to remain forever innocent and thus ceases expression. Emotional health rests on pure fluidity of all six SASHET feelings. We are appalled at how difficult it is for people who made such firm decisions as children to get flowing again. It is difficult. We did not say impossible. Some people rise to challenges and some just give in, stay stuck, and live lives of miserable adaptation.

Old Traumatic Stuck Feelings

Well, it is clear by now that all people are haunted by old decisions that leave us repeating, over and over again, old feeling sets. Most societies around the world understand clearly that there are those who are haunted by the past. War destroyed their family and they look vacant. Post-traumatic stress syndrome leaves others re-living horrible past situations.

These old feeling reactions become automatic reflexes. In our larger books we call old feelings of this nature "Reflexions". The reason is that people have an automatic reflex to the old way of feeling. We have seldom gone an hour without encountering old stuck feelings. Let us remember that the word 'trauma' implies a negative blow to the psyche, a marking blow that continues to have effect in later years.

The task is to discover those wounds to the psyche that interrupt feeling flow. Rather than just stay in the here and now and experience life as it comes along, the individual feels an old sad, angry, or scared feeling. The person is not in the moment; rather the past continues as the person reacts like a wounded child from long ago and faraway. Each of these is triggered by some precipitating event causing a person to fade out and deal with the present in the old manner of the past.

There are three categories of old traumatic stuck feelings: Singular events, developmental traumas, and painful, daily traumas that covered the entire childhood era. Let's consider them one at a time:

Particular traumas. Though a single event, the situation was sufficiently significant that it marked the personality in a negative way. Let's list a group of these:

a parent's indiscretion
a relative's indiscretion

a rape
an embarrassing incident
a parent's death
a terrifying scene
a car wreck
a grandparent's death

an abandonmant
a harsh verbal judgment
a sibling's death
a beating
a move
a bad school scene
a sibling's birth
divorced parents
loss of wealth
physical illness

Each of these singular traumas can mark a personality in so powerful a manner that the scene is replayed over and over again across the years.

Developmental traumas. These can be so profound and so life-marking that a person is trapped with an old set but has no clue as to how emotional fluid freedom was lost. In fact, people may not even know they are bound because language can justify the old space. (ex. "I choose the contemplative life", not realizing that birth was so painful that the child automatically withdrew from the very beginning). We need to understand some of the areas where major developmental traumas occur:

In utero: due to accident, booze, smoking, illness of mother
Birth: due to many surrounding difficulties
Attachment: mother and child do not bond
Exploration: child is not allowed to experience the world
Two year old: child's thinking is discounted
Three to six year old: magical thinking is encouraged
Six to twelve year old: caretaking is encouraged

This is an enormous area and cannot be covered adequately in a short paper. It must be said, simply, that some major traumatic stuckness occurs in grown-ups because of failures at a developmental age. The adult continues those marked periods by failures in certain options.

Childhood era traumas. If your father was drunk everyday and staggered around the home and community, it would mark your personality. If your mother was depressed daily, it leaves its toll. If you were crippled at birth and could not run freely like the other children, there is a mark on the psyche.

Some of the childhood era traumas we have witnessed are:

an only child an older sibling's persecution
continuous moving a parent's alcoholism

poverty daily emotional failures of parents

wealth living in an apartment
ghetto living suburb mentality

couch potato family severe religious beliefs

physical illnesses greedy consumer family

violent family boring family

The point is that fluidity in regard to full expression of SASHET families is simply not allowed by the situation and context in which the child grows. We know of families where the home is like a stuffy museum, others where parents sit like cadavers in the evening; still others where scare, sadness and anger dominate every moment. Unfortunately, daily conditioning does not leave a person free to be fluid in adulthood. While it is easier to gain permission to feel freely as a child, adults can re-learn - though it takes time.

Old Copied Stuck Feelings

Some people simply copy the stuck position of a parent who is tied to an old trauma. In some contexts we, the authors, have called these Ricochet Feelings. The idea is that they are feelings that bounce off of one body into the body of another. The process of doing this is as follows: a person identifies with another, mentally makes a copy, and begins to live like that. Bill's dad was a hell-raiser. He drank, brawled, brutalized his wife, and ruled his family. In other words, the father was one very scared man who had to continually prove that he was not inadequate. In that home, however, the scare was switched out of his body on to the bodies of his wife and children. Later in life, Bill walked around with an enormous amount of scare in his body that was not his. He had ricocheted his father's fright into his own body.

Many people not only copied one feeling: they learned how to copy feelings. Later in life they continually have to struggle not to incorporate others' states of mind. We had a client who could pick up on another's feelings at a basketball game! He would unconsciously scan the crowd for someone who was sad and begin to so identify that he became a physical echo of the other's mood. There are married clients who have great difficulty in not incorporating the psychological stuckness of their spouse. Some parents will take on the problems of their children (something that is difficult not to do when the child is hurt badly and loses fluid options). Some mothers and fathers favor a certain child who is then programmed with the parent's views of life - and includes how to feel in addition to how to think and act.

The worst option is to be caught in an old drama from childhood. Almost every child saw a continually running scene between their mother and father (or in some cases from a persecuting sibling). One role was strong, but hated. One role was weak and feared. The child adapted to that scene. Later in life the person may seek to re-play that scene with a partner and act out one of the three roles. Frequently, a person angles to get into the strong role, forgetting that it was hated, and treats a spouse in a terrible manner. This is the ugliest form of continued copied behavior and is tough to give up because people fear that vulnerability means being cast in the weak role.

This paper concentrates on how to attain fluid emotional life. To accomplish that for those stuck with copied feelings, several things are necessary. One, they must divorce the psychology of a parent. This is like unzipping from a space suit. It is accomplished by radical body work where a person does things totally uncharacteristic of their parents, for instance. It also involves finding a fluid model to copy and to walk around as that person day after day. Therapy can confront stuck places where a parent has been copied; it takes daily practice, however, to unzip and regain fluidity.

Old Adaptive Stuck Feelings

The most common adaptive feelings become lifestyles of pleasing, being perfect, and trying hard. Children get strokes from mom or dad for being a pleaser. In adulthood, the person has a big adaptive smile - seeking to please everyone who comes along. Pleasers forego a depth understanding of their personality because, due to a sharp micro-second of scare, there is the automatic adaptation of pleasing. Those caught with a Be Perfect are similar: they must do everything to the last degree. In our practice we see men and women who cannot understand why a spouse does not admire their Be Perfect stance. The reason is obvious to analysts: the person is being perfect for a mommy or daddy while the spouse wants spontaneity, not old conformity. Try Hards seem to be sacrificing and climbing Mt. Everest - but never making it. "I'll try" the person says, and goes about seeking to win, but not winning.

To understand human psychology at a depth level, it is critical to realize that no family is perfect, no childhood purely wonderful, and no situation without its limitations. At issue is fluidity of response in regard to feelings. This comes by a continual granting of permission to a child to feel the world as he or she experiences it. In one word, parenting is about the provision of 'options'. In some sense or another, all parents fail. Hopefully, the child is taught flexibility and does not simply take the journey where everything is done in an exact opposite to what was experienced as a child. Doing the opposite, of course, means an opposite set of mistakes.

Adaptations from childhood are so many that any list will leave out a colossal amount of options. Here are a few:

The Best Little Boy in All The World

Mommy's Helper
Daddy's Cheerleader

The Selfish Jock
The Family Glue Person (keeps all together)

The Sulk
The Absent-minded Intellectual

The Avoider
The Magical and Irrelevant Child

The Cute One
The Invisible

The Rebel
The Jealous Child

The Caretaker

The adaptation is especially difficult to perceive because a person's style may be so engrained that there is lack of awareness of the performance being sparked by a micro-second feeling of sadness, scare, or anger. One thing is sure: the person is not fluid. They may have a nice rap, a word-system covering everything on earth and heaven, but a depth feeling encounter with the world is missing. When an adaptation is blended with a strange belief system, it is terrifically difficult to awaken a person, because he will say that his style is a "faith" when, in point of fact, it is a mixture of pathology and religion. The adaptive person is a wind-up toy, an automaton, beating a drum for a past generation. This is sad. It is also difficult to confront in psychotherapy because you have to generously tell a person that their style is a vacant one. The best way is to ask,What are you feeling? because the person in the midst of the adaptation is oblivious.

In some of our books on the subject of feelings we call these old adaptive feelings "Rackets". The reason is that they are manipulations, like a racketeer using people. That may be too harsh. The person has forgotten the reason for the adaptive show and is just caught up in it, speaking lines and acting parts to an absent audience, but with no knowledge of what is happening. All here and now senses are quiet when the person is lost in adaptation - he or she is blind, deaf, and dumb. The show goes on, though.

The last three sections - along with real SASHET feelings - can be viewed graphically. A glance at 'The Morris Matrix' reveals the many options. This is handy when lost in a stuck feeling and you need to check out its source. The idea is to peruse columns until the specific area is located. For example, imagine that you are feeling scared, but do not know where it is coming from. If it were here and now you would know the reason. A thorough check through the other areas may be preceded with the following questions:

Does this feeling seem younger, as if I were a child?

Do I have the sense that I am copying someone?

Is this scare feeling a way I got strokes and attention?

Am I fluid at this moment in this situation?

How can I start move, make sound, and fully breathe again?

At certain times of the year, we return to old stuck feelings. These times are anniversary feelings. It helps to also think: "Is this time of year significant in some way or another?"

Probably the greatest mistake people make in terms of psychotherapy is getting a label and applying it universally. In terms of feelings, it is common for a person to take the SASHET information and think too globally. Let's list sentences of this nature:

"I was never excited as a child"

"My mother was never tender towards me."

"My dad was always angry."

"My brother totally hated me."

"My family argued every day."

"There was no love in my house."

Summary statements are sometimes useful. For a more balanced view of childhood (and, for that matter, one's present life), it is better to realize that we have felt all the feelings in the past and in the present also.

A reasoned view isolates the areas where fluidity is not active. Let's give a tough illustration. As a young child, Mae was sexually used by her step-father, uncle, and grandfather. When she grew up, Mae could be greatly excited about dancing, poetry and singing. Her fluidity stopped completely, though, when it came to being sexual with her spouse. She froze, her body stiffened, a stuck terror filled her body, and she thought the whole sexual business revolting. In Mae's case, the old scare and rage at being mistreated has to be released. She has to weep at the loss of innocence. Finally, though, she must re-gain fluidity in regard to sexuality, realizing that the gift of her body and the reception of someone else's gift is actually sacred. By the way, notice that she had a problem with sexuality because of an innate moral sense.

Blockages of fluidity are not always that severe. Sometimes it is a simple manner of a man being able to cry, admit helplessness, and confess to his spouse that he is sometimes very, very lonely. It can be as simple a matter as a woman admitting that she is angry at a miserable situation. Maybe a person needs permission to feel the pleasure of putting feet into a river and relaxing as the river rolls on by. It could be that a guy figures out that he is on an anger trip and simply avoids honestly admitting his scare and tenderness. There are a great many stories out there, all with pockets of stuck feelings, and all wanting to know the way to get going again.

To return to fluidity a person has to ask honest questions:

How old do I feel?

Who am I copying?

Is this the way I got attention as a child?

Free and Flowing Feelings

The introduction provided certain clues for people to become fluid. Children moved, made sound, and breathed fully. Those three items are critical for the person who wants to be free from the old stuck feelings.

We recall a client who began his 'therapy-speak' (some call it 'psycho-babble') and we interrupted. "How about taking up racquetball?" He was startled because he was once an athlete but had become a scholar. At the next session he confessed that he felt better when playing racquetball. Why? He was moving, making sound, and breathing deeply.

Sometimes it is wise to stop head trips in figuring out your psychology and move, make sound, and breathe fully. If you find yourself stuck in one of the old modes of childhood, get out of your chair, put on John Phillip Sousa and march! Sing! Dance! Breathe fully! We have in mind your building in the three processes of childhood into every hour: Move! Make sound! Breathe! Then add knowledge about SASHET feelings and the various stuck categories.

You need more help. Probably the best is finding a therapist who will encourage you to feel, think, act, and value. We mean a person who emphasizes fluidity in SASHET by solving old issues of the past, ceasing old models, and stopping manipulative feelings. We have in mind a person who encourages you to be real with feelings. We recommend a person who challenges your thinking and does not let mind-reading, blaming, or poor logic possess your mind very long. Find a therapist who encourages you to act in the world along the lines of identity and constructive relationship building.

Let's stick with this one about 'acting' a bit longer. Practice new conduct out in society. One thing is critical: people do not know who you are until you signal them verbally or non-verbally. Let's imagine you have historically been shy. No one will notice if you drop that. You can immediately act your age and come forth with courage, because, after all, underneath every shy person is a lion. You say: "How do I suddenly start acting differently?" Fake it. Just become a method actor. For a day, act like your favorite movie star. Copy someone you admire and be that person during the day. Use the same walk, attitude, facial expressions, etc. of the one you are copying. No one will know what you are doing inside your skull. For instance, if you have no friends, practice a day making friends and being friendly. Keep moving, though. Make friendly sounds. Smile. Breathe comfortably.

Some will pull back from the last paragraph. We know, though, from decades of doing therapy that freedom occurs behaviorally in addition to just feeling work with a therapist. If you change your entire behavior set, you will also change feelings inside. The truth from those who demur, of course, is that some old, stuck feelings must be dispatched by anguished sessions. There are ugly places from the past that stick and stick and stick.

But here is another word of hope. You do not have to be stuck all the time. Only part of you is captured by an old space. You may continue your journey in many areas while dis-connecting the pull of the old places. The rules are known, the path lit. In your journey there will be times when you need to talk with a professional, other times when straight talk with a close friend achieves miracles. Give yourself time to learn how to be fluid with feelings. A free personality isn't built in a day. That you know that freedom is possible and that your victory will be achieved is sufficient knowledge at the outset. We do recommend that you keep this guide handy and read it over and over again until you have the information well in mind. Then, dance, sing, shout, play.

Final Thoughts

There is sufficient complexity in understanding psychological emotions that a fair question arises: Is anyone free of childhood stuck feelings? We think not. This is not an area to be lost in a Be Perfect syndrome. All will occasionally act out of unresolved childhood material and lose fluidity.

Also, with great force and conviction, we announce that it is possible to basically get in flow and leave childhood behind. People can switch from moments of freedom to moments of containment to the child mind. There may be no total victory. Certainly some occasions might still trigger old traumas, copies, and adaptations. Someone may hook you with a harsh critical voice, a demeaning sentence, or a thoughtless deed and you flip back, for a moment, into an old routine. Fluidity is checked, you solve it, and move on.

The point is that you can take charge of your emotional life. It takes effort, and, for some, many sessions while the pain of childhood is dealt with. Gaining the feeling life and returning to flowing living is worth it.

Here is a desirable hierarchy in terms of feelings:

1. Awareness

2. Expression

3. Communication

4. Fluidity

Awareness. In psychotherapy "awareness" is used differently than in artistic fields. There you are aware of color, smell, taste, touch, balance, melody and a host of other sensory variables. Awareness in psychotherapy means knowledge of what is going on inside of you. This first means a rather exquisite personal knowledge of bodily sensations. In keeping with the theme of this paper we have not considered physical sensations such as hunger, thirst, sexual needs and even such areas as when your shoulders are tight, your breathing constricted, or your stomach tenses. Psychological awareness actually includes those for they are important reactions that provide a lot of insight, also. Most of all, major psychological awareness revolves around internal checking of the full range of the six emotions.

First, become aware of the six feelings as they course through your mind, or as you may find yourself stuck, holding to one old mode as if were life itself (when, in fact, the old space is death for the soul). To become aware psychologically speaking, build SASHET into consciousness - knowing when sadness, anger, scare, happiness, excitement, and tenderness flow through your being. These become touchstones of the soul.

Expression. We unfortunately begin with a word of caution. There are some contexts where you cannot express, externally in the moment, what you are feeling inside. In some business arenas and even in dangerous personal situations, awareness of SASHET may not be wise to immediately express. We regret that, but it is frequently socially true. So, in those situations, mark the feeling and let it out of your body later. Your reflex must be to let your body do what it needs to do to become fluid. Remember the playground. Children cry for a moment and go back to play. They huff and puff with anger and return to swirling and dancing and making happy sounds.

Fluidity cannot be compromised. In order to keep cleansing your body, an outlet for feelings is necessary . You may recall that original traumas were specially installed in the personality because there was not a legitimate way to fully feel through the difficulty. Therefore, freedom in regard to feelings means letting feelings come forth.

We do offer one check, though. Always look under the one you want to express to see if there is another, more hidden, feeling. Maybe you'd like to yell with anger, but, beneath that, lies either scare, tenderness, or sadness. You see, there is a deep honesty involved in real feeling expression. There is no need to add more pain to the world by being phony. Let your body find its fundamental expressions and find an authentic way for them to come forth.

Communication. In almost all situations you can say, in words if not in full expression, what is going on inside of you. "That scares me". "I find myself feeling agitated inside, like a little anger is down there". "I am sad that you think that about me." "I'm really excited about our prospects in that area."

The idea is to put in words what you feel inside. This, by the way, is a hallmark of great intimacy. By sharing SASHET your partner always knows where you are coming from; there is no mystery with its follow-through of mind-reading. Likewise, you know what is going on in the internal feeling field of your companion. This is enormously fulfilling. Of course, the feeling has to be examined. It is critical to make sure that there is not some old harping tune leftover from childhood, some old whiny scare, some continual sad "Poor Me" theme, or, say, a phony excitement that thrilled a parent.

Communication of real SASHET feelings is the hallmark of both the person of identity and the person connected to a loving partner. The words "I feel..." are followed with one of the SASHET six; not "I feel like...". "I feel that...", or "I feel as if..." Those three are the beginning of thoughts -- not feelings.

Fluidity. Now the six feelings are soaked into the texture of the body and are in a person's walk, talk, thinking, valuing, acting and being. You flow like a natural child laughing and playing on a ball field. This does not mean total happiness, the golden dream of so many philosophers. It does mean that happiness is the ground feeling one returns to steadily throughout the course of life. It also means flowing with the other five feelings. Sometimes, there may be occasions on the death of a loved one where tears never seem to end. There are scares in terms of health that are substantive and do not depart easily. There are angers at injustices that motivate a life of doing something on behalf of truth and love.

Still, like ocean tides, you return to being real inside and let ordinary SASHET flow. For one thing, you like that better and have greater self-respect. For another, you find that people begin relating to you in a more comfortable fashion: they know who you are, where you stand, how you feel, and what you think because you have no shame in telling them.

A final benediction is in order. You are worth the time and investment of learning how to be really real. Learn your feelings and be authentic about them. Become fluid with SASHET. Then self-respect, hope and love will be daily companions. May you have a journey marked by the spontaneity of a child.


Footnote to therapists: Doing therapy begins with a simple task. Ask what the person is feeling underneath whatever rhetoric emerges and pursue that feeling to its source, seeing if it is fluid. Add to that an honest confession of your own feelings at whatever the client does, e.g. "I feel scared at that one"; "That seems exciting to me". There is more to the work than that, of course, but with this foundation, clients can be led out of the forests of childhood misery into the clean air of fluid living.

Footnote to philosophers: Psychotherapy, and all systems of personal psychology for that matter, will be forever condemned to opinion until an empirical foundation is provided. A particular science always begins with a fundamental unit. Close observation and tracking of each SASHET feeling provides a respectable basis for psychotherapy to finally become a science. While this paper is termed "an easy guide", the science of psychotherapy that follows primary observations is quite profound. An implication of this new science is that each non-fluid sentence or behavior is challenged. If, for instance, a person comes off the wall with some weird non-scientific position, the therapist inquires as to the feeling underneath that thought rather than challenge the thought itself. The pursuit has begun. "How old do you feel when you think like that?" Each section of the Morris Matrix can then be explored until the person becomes fluid, here and now, and experiencing.

Beginning with a fundamental unit is necessary. From that point an entire system of human psychology can be erected. With no basic unit of observation, verifiable to any objective scientist and reproducible by any psychotherapist, human psychology flounders. With a basic unit we have a clear pathway to a much long desired philosophical goal: human freedom and happiness. It all begins with honesty about human feelings: SASHET.