my dharma journey to mental healthiness

These are blog posts from 2013, when I started this blog, until mid-August 2022, when I started this website.


As a kid, my anxiety led to anger, and I had no way to deal with it. Instead, a habit of anger developed and grew deep roots. This is not something I want to continue; it’s a sucky way to live.


My anxiety learned far too well from human evolution. This is where the great value of mental health care and mindfulness practice is seen for me.

warning signs

The greatest threat to my daily mental healthiness has always been falling prey to whatever my emotions or thoughs were. Depression had no trouble taking over when I was clueless about the warning signs. This is no longer the case.

calm the eff down

I love sports – football/soccer, baseball, cricket, running – but being a fan can be hard on my mental health. Anger, frustration, disappointment and just the occasional championship; it’s hard to maintain equanimity in this way.


Like most of the world, I was ignorant of my mental health challenges for most of my life. That changed thanks to the VA, and I have been left with an important realization about my life.

another post

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a new sample post

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I felt a lightness inside yesterday that had nothing to do with getting up early to go to work for the sixth time in seven days. I didn’t even realize I was feeling this way until I got to the MAX statIon and was waiting for my train. I was puzzled. I felt happy, a happiness that, as I said, came across as lightness. Very quickly I came up with an answer that I think is correct. On Monday, I made a decision to set aside my goal of doing a mental health podcast. After nearly three years, it was…


Blame isn’t worth a lot, but there is a place I can start with blaming others and know it’s true: as a child, a toddler. After all, at that age, I was in the care of other people who had almost total influence on whether or not I would begin my life on a road towards mental healthiness. Sadly, the most important of those people, my parents, were not very healthy themselves. Looking back from here, I can see all that I needed and did not get. Things did not improve from there. School was awful, friends were non-existent, and…

i’ve always hated normal

The title of this post pretty much sums up my life. Well, it would if I’d been able to live my life both non-normally and productively. Given that I’ve been unable to do with my life what I’d have like to have done with my life, I can’t say I’ve lived normally or otherwise. I’ve lived broken and lost. Which, sad to say, is the normal for far too many humans. Another reason to hate normal. Mask mandates in Oregon ended a week ago. People think we’re back to normal, or getting there. That well may be true, but I…

small steps

I don’t have the time to finish and publish this this morning. I don’t even have a point to make except the most important one in my life at this point of my life: Do what I can, right now, to live my values. To that end, I am writing this post in the last few minutes before I have to leave for work. Creativity is one of my core values, and writing is the primary way I wish to live that value. So with just a few minutes left before leaving, and a nice cuppa at hand, I made…


A number of thoughts went through my head during my mindfulness practice this morning. One of them was “No, you are not a bad person just because thoughts are going through your head when your intention is to pay attention to your breathing and not your thoughts”. This, of course, is the nature of a mindfulness practice: intention one place, attention elsewhere. But you notice the elsewhere and, with intention, return the attention to where you want it. This is never a failure; it’s just how the human brain functions. But that wasn’t the thought that caught my attention, so…

resolutions are junk

Resolutions are a useless way to fix your life. The reason they fail so utterly for most people is that they are nothing more than a goal, and the most a goal can be is a step towards fixing your life. People make resolutions like “Lose weight” or “Go the gym more” or “Read a book a month”. Again, these are goals. These are items on a checklist. Does anyone believe that a checklist is going to fix the stuff that’s wrong in their life? Goals are useful tools if used properly, but the proper use of goals is not…