Metaphor about your brain – Part 2*

by Rod Smith

Box 2 is the Limbic Box and it is much larger than the stem (BOX 1) and feels, yes, feels, it is much more important.

It is not.

It is different.

This is the “feelings” or “emotion center.” 

Linger in your limbic and you will hear country music blaring from all sides. You’ll see “Chicken Soup for the Soul” books everywhere. You will be in tears in no time. Linger in the limbic too long and you will feel overwhelmed. Sit around here and you will be paging through memories with joy (on a good day) and singing “Nobody loves me everybody hates me,” on a bad day.

It is an essential place to visit but you don’t want to live here. 

This is a place reserved for mammals and humans. No matter how much you love your pet alligator and how much fun you have with it, it simply doesn’t have fun. It doesn’t have the brains for fun. Your dog does. That is why fun with your dog is really a mutual (but not equal) experience. Throwing a ball in the yard might be fun for you but it is the pinnacle of joy – every time – for your dog.

Have you ever felt really sorry for yourself? Like absolutely no one cares, especially after ALL you’ve done? Do you find yourself singing “I’m-so-lonesome” songs and “I-feel-so left out” songs? You have been spending far too much time in your feeling or I-Need-Empathy Box. 

This is a warm and welcoming place but it is not built for thinking. 

*I remain influenced by Rabbi Friedman, Peter Steinke, and Murray Bowen. All have written profoundly on these matters. Peter’s book “How Your Church Family Works” was my primary influence in revolutionizing how I see and understand my own thinking. I give Peter full credit for any resemblance you may see to his work. While it is neither copied nor “lifted”, one cannot read something and love something so much without it reverberating in one’s work.

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