Romantic Fiction, Reality Shaping and The Work

ryu

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I read a Christmas Bride which closes the Stapelton series. I was amazed by the warmth and forgiveness of all people involved. If Mrs Balogh is channeling something, she's probably channeling how life is in STO worlds, because it seems surreal that so many people at the same location can be so positively human.

I was glad that Balogh didn't diminished the gravity of what happened because the victim was a young man. All youngs should be protected, but boys seem to be expected to suck it up, move on and turn out fine.

I also finished reading "Tremaine's true love" and will continue with the series. I liked all the characters but really liked George. The man took a path which was against a part of his nature but it helped him find a purpose in life. And he did it by being true and honest to his wife.

As I was reading this book, I coudn't help but think that it was going counter to everything I was seeing in the outside world. I knew it before, but it really struck this time. I was commiting a thought crime, I was truly a lost sheep in regard to woke crowd.
Indeed, Gorges's story would send the LGBT fanatics into a fit.
The feminists (the nazi ones) would also go into a fit over Nita's choice of stopping what she was doing for the sake of her fiance and her family. (She confessed she didn't liked it all that much at the end, now that she understood her family's perspective, she and Tremaine found a compromise).

Also, I wanted to share that I that things are moving in my inner landscape. I am more tuned to my emotions, I feel them more finely and with more nuances, it's hard to explain. It's weird to say it, but I have the impression that a "new Self" is forming, like a pregnancy. People around me told me that I've been more feminine recently.

I also have begun to "see" how much I internalised the societal and familial expectation on what a woman should be if she wants to be loved, secure, successful. Much of my pain and resentment of being born a woman came from the fact that I hated that " success" revolved so much on landing yourself a rich and powerful man to whom you'd be a doormat. I was also not pleased of being physically weaker than men, that we were the victims, those who suffer in silence etc etc... Everything I saw around me told me that I'd eventually come into the fold, accept my fate and resign myself to a life of quiet despair.

I tried to live a life were I would make my own choices, discover as much as I could, become a person who could think by herself, who wouldn't shy away from the truth even if was painful. I wanted to be free. But I had a "Ahah" moment a few days ago that I wasn't free. I could see that I held those beliefs in me, and was still suffering, because I didn't fit into the mold society had ready for me and I knew that deep down I didn't wanted to fit into this mold. I had the impression that all those beliefs were like a veil between me and ...my true self, let's call it that.

I realized that my hesitancy of being a wife and a mother came partly from the incouscious rejection of the demands of society. Now I am breathing a bit better, a I see I can be those things without betraying myself.
 
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ryu

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That's an interesting comparison because the very first effect of those books that I noticed was that it was similar to NeurOptimal. Let me start with my NO experiences before I move on to the books. To date I did over 100 sessions and around 20 sessions into the process I started having quite intense reactions. The most notable one of them was feeling emotional and crying, often for what seemed like no particular reason, or not a strong enough reason, both during the sessions and at other times. This was new because I hadn't been a particularly emotional person before.

There was one instance that was almost terrifyingly intense. I was around 2 years ago and I was maybe 50 sessions into my NO adventure. I was watching a Russian TV series with English subtitles as an effort to learn Russian. The series featured a girl who clearly liked the main male character but she was in a relationship with someone else. She didn't love that man but she thought he was a good person who didn't deserve the pain of being left for another. So although she wanted to be with the new guy she kept oscillating between finding self-deprecating and self-pitying reasons not to, or judging his character harshly and pushing him away. Meanwhile both her and the new guy suffered becuase of her indecisiveness and rejection of the man she loved due to some preconceived ideas she had about him and herself. For some reason I found that really irritating but at the same time I binge watched the series.

Only seasons 1 & 2 were available with English subtitles but I bumped into a Russian song on YouTube that used scenes from season 3. Right at the end of that season the girl protects the guy from a gunshot with her own body and they both end up getting shot, lying motionless on the floor in a paddle of blood. When the song ended I started to feel really raw, emotional and I started crying. I felt like that story happened to me although I never had such an experience. The feeling of sadness quickly changed into absolutely devastating despair and I literally felt as if someone I loved died. There were no images or memories attached to it, just overwhelming guilt, pain and regret. The flood of tears was absolutely overwhelming. I was lying on the floor unable to stop it, literally screaming and sobbing into a cushion so no one in the house could hear me. I remember sensations that were somewhere between feelings and thoughts, a soul crushing guilt and regret, the feeling that I would give absolutely everything to turn back the time and do it differently. And now that person was gone and it was all lost in a way that was final.

This incident lasted over 40 minutes and I kept thinking about it for weeks afterwards. I never lost anyone in a way that would enable me to relate to such strong feelings of loss and regret but when I analysed my romantic relationships similarities between the girl and me became quite clear. Most of my relationships had a tendency to turn quite lukewarm on my part very quickly. I tended to go with what the other person wanted and never reach out for what I wanted or refuse what I didn't want, and that would become unbearable early on in a relationship. I would forgo a huge part of myself in an attempt to make it work but I could never do it for very long. And soon being alone would become a less soul destroying choice so I'd end the relationship. But more often than not I'd either pull out or ruin things before it even got serious for exactly the same reasons the girl in the series did: self-deprecating and self-pitying narratives to convince myself that it was never going to work, or judging the other person's character harshly and pushing him away.

And then the romantic fiction project started. I have read quite a few books already but it was the Seven Nights in the Rouge's bed that provoked the first strong reaction. Jonas' narratives of being unworthy of love, and then him pushing Sidonie away because he thought she betrayed him made me so upset that I just had to scroll to the end and check how the story ended to make sure they did end up together. Then came the 1797 club and the first 4 books deal with similar dynamics: pushing a loved one away becuase of a belief in some perceived fundamental flaw in the self that makes a successful relationship impossible. A belief that developed as a result of childhood experiences and was never challenged in later life. And the characters in those books nearly miss out on love for the same reasons the girl in the TV series did: pushing away the person they loved because of a bunch of narratives about themselves, the other person, and life in general. Whether there is any significance to the fact that I can relate to the male protagonists more than the female ones I do not know.

But the 1979 Club series has done one more thing that other books I read so far haven't done as effectively, at least for me. It showed me how childhood experiences, and parents' actions and words make us develop narratives that we take as unquestionable truth about ourselves. I knew that intellectually from all the recommended readings on psychology here but the ramifications of it for me personally only truly sunk in with those books.

Coincidentally, shortly before starting the 1979 Club I had a chance to spend 6 months at my family's place and what became painfully clear to me during that time was that although my family are in general very kind, gentle and loving people they do have a pretty nasty dark side. Moments of friction between us made me see with terrifying clarity that in emotionally charged moments they have quite an impressive capacity to say things that emotionally crush the opposition. They know exactly where to hit with their words to inflict the most pain and they will distort reality in such a way that I'm left feeling like absolute dog $h!t. And upon reflection I discovered that it's always been like that. What's interesting is that they resort to this in specific circumstances: when either their peace and quiet - or their narrative about themselves and their own kindness are being challenged. And unfortunately for me, I have been the source of such disruption to both their peace and quiet and their narratives about themselves for a long while. That's because the biggest difference between us is that their peace and quiet and their narratives have been as important to them as the truth has been to me. And unfortunately they couldn't always be reconciled.

I just finished book 4 of the 1979 series and somewhere along the way it dawned on me with painful clarity that an overwhelmingly huge part of my own narrative about myself consists of those hurtful words I heard in moments of tension since I was little. For example, my mom told me more often than I can count that no one would ever want me becuase of the person I was. How early I stated hearing "you'll end up alone!" and other words to that effect can be best illustrated by the fact that initially I thought she meant that my family would leave me, or abandon me. It must have been before it even crossed my mind that she could have meant a romantic partner. So I went on to spend most of my life single and thinking that this was just meant to be. That it was easier to be alone and that relationships were always going to end either in heartbreak or discomfort of trying to mould myself into something I was not because as I was, I was obviously unloveable.

I can't say I feel liberated by any of this. I actually feel robbed of a life I could have had if only I hadn't mistaken my family's tactic to make an issue go away by emotionally knocking out the opponent for an absolute and indisputable truth that has defined me as a human being. I haven't fully processed it yet, and to be honest I'm not too sure where to go with this or what to do. But I'll certainly keep reading the books - even though I've cried through a lot of them. They make me feel raw and emotional like NO did but unlike with NO it is easier to put my finger on what exactly is causing the emotional response. As they say, sometimes the only way out is through.
I could have written the 2nd half of your post. I got the same comments from my family. In my case, they were irritated at a child (me) who wasn't fitting into the mold, and was asking too many questions.

That got me convinced that I would never be loved if I was myself, that I could never be my true self with a partner, (or with friends). That I wasn't enough etc, ect. Needless to say, I completly messed up my relationships voluntarily, because staying would have meant letting go of myself and get into a mold of what my partner wanted me to be. I saw friends, (male and female) fading away, giving up who they were just to be able to stick to what their partner wanted. I was horrified.

I can't say I'm over it myself, but one of the great lessons to learn in life is that we are our own persons before being our child's parents, that we will never be the child they thought we would be, no matter how hard we try to please them. It's frightening, because it put us face to face with ourselves. But it's also healing and we become a bit like our own parent, we learn to love ourselves, to gently but firmly work toward "adulthood".

I would say, don't give up. You've come so far without selling yourself for less, you have the courage to look at you wounds. It's more than most people do, so you can be proud of that. This network is behind you, all of us here we have an opportunity to heal and come to terms with our past, the past of the many men and women who came before us.

And lastly, I send you a big hug! :hug2:Take care
 

genero81

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@Ant22 Thank you for your post! I wish I had use of an N.O. machine that wouldn't break me financially. I would do 100 N.O. sessions, one for each romance novel and throw in 100 E.E. sessions for good measure!

The honesty and clarity with which you wrote spoke volumes to me. It reminds me of those rare A.A. meetings where someone gets really gut level honest and then the next person follows suit and then the next and the next. Those are the most powerful meetings I think because much like the books, one can actually be a part of those peoples experience and learn from it as if one had actually been there. And it helps that those experiences closely match one's own.

Anyway, it inspires me to want to do the same.
 

JEEP

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FOTCM Member
Ok late to the party but I just finished my first book, “The Laird’s Willful Lass” by Anna Campbell.
From my initial post regarding the romantic fiction in the recent transcript thread:
In the beginning I was reading and following the thread and continued to peek in as it expanded. Sooo many books being recommended! It was a bit overwhelming
I went on to indicate that I obtained Mary Balogh's book, Someone to Love (finished), from my local library. The book I really wanted was “The Laird’s Willful Lass” by Anna Campbell. Sadly, neither my local library, assorted metropolitan area libraries linked to the local library, or Ohio Link or Search Ohio (pulls from associated libraries throughout the state) had this book. The Columbus Metropolitan library that doesn't have reciprocal lending with my local library, has it as an eBook only. Consequently, I've gone on to choose the actual books that are available from my local library, the next one being The Proposal (finished) and First Comes Marriage to be picked up tomorrow. All are authored by Mary Balogh.

My first reaction in reading the first book was, "What the heck is a quizzing glass!" I subsequently found out and actually spotted one in one or both versions of Emma showing on HBO. The various Jane Austen movies that I've seen rather recently along with PBS Masterpiece presentations with location in Cornwall, helped with visualizing the locale in The Proposal. I found both books pleasant to read but not without some annoying quirks. First and foremost was this reference in The Proposal regarding being sucked into a black hole! Since I don't believe anyone of the era referenced had any inkling whatsoever about the existence of black holes, I supposed the meaning was more generic. Did persons of that time actually use such an expression indicating falling into despair/depression especially the sucked into? I can't remember what the circumstances were or the character making that reference now. And perhaps the problem is that I am taking too much of a 20th century sensibility with me as I read these books much like the Cs admonishing that too much 3D thinking was clouding one's ability to comprehend what was being contemplated during a session.

The other annoyance with The Proposal was in regard to the main characters vacillating back and forth repeatedly (and almost endlessly) about why they were thinking/doing/did behaviors giving them grief. Yikes - enough already! Otherwise, much more entertaining and enjoyable than all the offerings on my TV - and commercial free! Sooo glad to have such an alternative to the crap on the airwaves.

Hugo's coming to terms with his war experiences was notable although several post references to the Forlorn Hope seemed more than wrong considering how horrific/traumatizing it had been - almost made in jest! Didn't make sense to me. And did it make sense to call a young lady named Constance Connie? That seemed wrong for the era as well. Perhaps it was to show she was of the middle class whereas a true Lady would never be called Connie even by family members. Hard to say since Gwendolyn went by Gwen almost exclusively among family and friends. Just a few nitpicky things that didn't amount to much.

The main themes of class between the two books were interesting in that in Someone to Love, the unexpected reversal of class distinction (and wealth) between half-siblings played out with the affected parties having to deal with such a totally new and shocking reality. In The Proposal, Hugo had to come to terms with his acquisition of a title after having lived entirely before in a middle-class reality. And Gwendolyn had to come to terms with becoming involved with a man (or any man for that matter) outside of her class despite his acquired title. Hmm - how will it end . . . :whistle:

Recently, I've been thinking a lot about God, cosmic love, creation and the creative process and how people with great talents come up with their ideas.
Yeah. I wonder the same thing and that's why I figured it had to be some sort of channeling.
I'm pretty sure the Cs said such things come from them (6D). Also, people who are extraordinarily creative have indicated that the "thoughts" come into their heads from nowhere. I read that Paul McCartney of the Beatles indicated their songs just came into their heads and I read of a regular person who said the same regarding recipes. A mother said that she herself wasn't much of a cook and thus, didn't have much to pass onto her daughter growing up. Yet the daughter ended up writing numerous cookbooks filled with recipes that just "came into her head" continually. I wonder if anyone has inquired as to how Mary Balogh comes up with her story ideas - do they just pop into her head or does she set out with a simple idea and proceed to research for historical references to flesh it out?

So tomorrow, a new book to delve into! 😊
 

Siberia

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When the song ended I started to feel really raw, emotional and I started crying. I felt like that story happened to me although I never had such an experience.

Not sure which film/song you are referring to, but your description of the plot reminds me a bit of the famous 1978 Soviet film My Sweet and Tender Beast.

The soundtrack to this film was written by the genius Soviet composer Eugen Doga. Personally, for me the melody alone is strong enough to draw buckets of tears.
 

Renaissance

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I felt like that story happened to me although I never had such an experience. The feeling of sadness quickly changed into absolutely devastating despair and I literally felt as if someone I loved died. There were no images or memories attached to it, just overwhelming guilt, pain and regret. The flood of tears was absolutely overwhelming. I was lying on the floor unable to stop it, literally screaming and sobbing into a cushion so no one in the house could hear me. I remember sensations that were somewhere between feelings and thoughts, a soul crushing guilt and regret, the feeling that I would give absolutely everything to turn back the time and do it differently. And now that person was gone and it was all lost in a way that was final.

I think emotions as intense as these are probably from actual experiences. To be honest, it doesn't sound like a deep childhood wound but more like adult pain, probably from a past life. I've come to understand emotions, in what way I can, as actual objects that can become lodged in our being through our lives and past lives. It seems it is the more painful emotions from all our experiences that carry weight and retain influence on how we react to our life circumstances. Holding on to them is just a means of giving continual strength to them. What makes these books so powerful is that I think it allows us to release or transform these emotions so that we can tune into the better parts of ourselves.
 

Jo Bugman

Padawan Learner
I'm on the 4th book in Anna Campbell's Laird's series. It's interesting to watch myself as I read expecting things to go wrong. These books are making me realize I don't really believe in love. I know it exists, like between a parent and a child, or a creator and his creation, but it's sort of "out there", but not "here", if that makes sense. When the characters in the books are struggling to admit their love for one another, I expect the woman to think the man's not worth the effort and move on. Or that the man should stop wasting his time when the woman is too scared to speak truthfully.

It's quite a bitter attitude, and I can't say I'm all that surprised. I don't have a lot of experience with love, I don't have any friends. I'm used to people just using me to get what they want, and unfortunately my experiences with females aren't too positive. I've been thinking about something the C's said for years, about being catching up with doing, and it's being brought up here again.
I read all these books about psychology, love, programs, etc. but in the end I have very few chances to actually put it into practice. It just sits in the memory bank and fades away over time. That's the point of reading these novels I guess, to live vicariously through the characters so as to find out more about ourselves in ways we (unfortunately) can't in reality. This bitter attitude is something I need to pay more attention to, I don't want it to get in the way of living life. I'm also going to take a break from Anna Campbell... if I have to read another "Och, you're so bonny" I'll fly through the roof!
 

Laura

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When the song ended I started to feel really raw, emotional and I started crying. I felt like that story happened to me although I never had such an experience. The feeling of sadness quickly changed into absolutely devastating despair and I literally felt as if someone I loved died. There were no images or memories attached to it, just overwhelming guilt, pain and regret. The flood of tears was absolutely overwhelming. I was lying on the floor unable to stop it, literally screaming and sobbing into a cushion so no one in the house could hear me. I remember sensations that were somewhere between feelings and thoughts, a soul crushing guilt and regret, the feeling that I would give absolutely everything to turn back the time and do it differently. And now that person was gone and it was all lost in a way that was final.

This incident lasted over 40 minutes and I kept thinking about it for weeks afterwards. I never lost anyone in a way that would enable me to relate to such strong feelings of loss and regret <snip>

I'm with Renaissance on this one: sounds like some past life stuff was tapped into, even if you can't remember anything consciously.
 

hiker

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I have ordered a couple of book series from Amazon UK as used books. The latest was Balogh's Web series, all 4 books sent to abroad for 12 pounds. Not too bad. The only downsides are that it takes longer time for the books to arrive, when buying used from Amazon "subcontractor", and that it could be difficult to find the whole series from the same outlet. If you order a series from several different places, the shipping costs can pile up.

Also I wondered, that if there are 100 books in total to be read, there could be a problem with storage. I guess the books could be given to a recycling center, but anyways I caved in and bought a Kindle. I prefer physical books, but Kindle has a nice bonus: it's dictionary option sure comes in handy!

While waiting for the Web-series, I read Scarlett Scott's "Lady Wallflower", Grace Burrowes's "The Laird" and Balogh's "The Obedient Wife".

The Obedient Wife (it was very good) was written in the same year (1989) as the Gilded Web, along with 3 other books. A very prolific year (of channeling ;-)) for Balogh!

Lady Wallflower was surprisingly steamy, but there was "a method to the steaminess", as it ended up being quite a compelling story about the character growth of the main pair.

Grace Burrowes's The Laird was already a hard read for me at times, it deals with child sexual abuse of both sexes, but I did finish it and now I am glad I did! It's like taking a hurdle and then looking back at the hurdle from the other side, knowing we came through and able to process some events to some extent described in these novels.

Grace Burrowes's The Laird has been the toughest read for me so far.

Speaking of Burrowes, I just read "The Captive" and it was quite an interesting story of a guy captured in the Napoleonic Wars, tortured for months, and then finally is freed and returns home. During his captivity, his wife and son die and his little daughter becomes mute. At home, he encounters his deceased wife's cousin who is now widowed and the rest of the story should be read.

There are some very interesting comparisons between a prisoner of war and his torture and a woman trapped in a marriage with a cruel and vicious husband. It is definitely not an easy story to read, but the relationship that develops is really quite beautiful.

Like Mariama and Bluefyre mentioned, The Laird was a tough and startling read as the bad guy turned out to be a pedophile. At the start the narrative was perhaps not quite as engaging as in Balogh's or Gracie's books, but picked up steam as it progressed. In the end it was definitely worth the read. Burrowes's "The Captive" seems like a book worth reading too.
 

Laura

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While waiting for the Web-series, I read Scarlett Scott's "Lady Wallflower", Grace Burrowes's "The Laird" and Balogh's "The Obedient Wife".


Like Mariama and Bluefyre mentioned, The Laird was a tough and startling read as the bad guy turned out to be a pedophile. At the start the narrative was perhaps not quite as engaging as in Balogh's or Gracie's books, but picked up steam as it progressed. In the end it was definitely worth the read. Burrowes's "The Captive" seems like a book worth reading too.

Actually, "The Laird" is the last book of a trilogy beginning with "The Captive", then "The Traitor", and last, "The Laird". All the characters are intertwined to some extent. I read "The Laird" first, too. But then, when I found the other two, I read them in order and even re-read "The Laird" to finish it off. It was a lot more satisfying that way since I knew the backstory of "The Laird" that way.
 

susy7

Jedi Master
Read the splendid Dante la Vita Nuova, or he addresses his Beatrix, I put you the link which has been put in the form of music. Read again this passion between Cleopatra and Antoine. These platonic loves. Romance and Love are for those with soul, seek your Aphrodite within you
 

hiker

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Actually, "The Laird" is the last book of a trilogy beginning with "The Captive", then "The Traitor", and last, "The Laird". All the characters are intertwined to some extent. I read "The Laird" first, too. But then, when I found the other two, I read them in order and even re-read "The Laird" to finish it off. It was a lot more satisfying that way since I knew the backstory of "The Laird" that way.
Je les ai commandés mais pas encore reçus, malheureusement, je les attends avec impatience...

I ordered them but haven't received them yet, unfortunately, I am looking forward to them...

Thanks, will check out the previous parts as well!
 

Brewer

Jedi Master
I've read hundreds of books, closest I've come to romance books are historical novels such as Wilbur Smith and Colleen McCollugh's Rome series. Do they count? Thanks
 

Andrian

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I've read hundreds of books, closest I've come to romance books are historical novels such as Wilbur Smith and Colleen McCollugh's Rome series. Do they count? Thanks
I'd say they don't. The romance novels picked up and recommended by Laura are following specific patterns related to human relationships and all that it entails. It's a whole psychological universe on human existence in 3D rich of gems of wisdom that takes the Work on oneself to a whole new level.

If you're interested to dwell in this adventure I'd recommend to read entirely the following thread and the recommended romance novels.

As far as I'm concerned the adventure is worth it 1000%
 
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