Non-Expression Exercise

Student: Regarding non-expression of negative emotions, it seems an important distinction is between expressing the emotion and communicating the fact that an emotion is present. For example, calmly saying, “I find that person irritating,” doesn’t quite seem to be expressing negative emotion.

Teacher: It isn’t. Unless it’s done passive aggressively. False Personality can be sneaky/subtle that way.

Student: Right. But you and I often communicate the fact that we find something irritating/frustrating.

Teacher: Right.

Student: So it’s when it’s done with identification that it becomes expression of negative emotion? That’s an important delineation, I think. “So-and-so is like human sandpaper,” is quite different than, “F**k so-and-so, that twerp”.

Teacher: Yes. Non-expression isn’t pretending nor is it “denial”.

Student: Right. You don’t bottle it up. You just don’t let it “get” you. Already in non-expression, Maurice Nicoll’s definition of faith comes in to play. One must begin to see that the energy with which something is done is significant. A new layer of reality that is easily overlooked.

Teacher: Yes.

Student: The New Age/hippie canard of, “don’t be negative,” is overly formatory. Prevents genuine discrimination. You get fake happy-happy people who are secretly seething with resentment.

Teacher: True. That’s denial.