All Posts Tagged With: "depression"

The Shack, William P. Young (Bonus: Jeff Shephard Band’s Song, Traffic Lights)

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“I truly believe we are as sick as the secrets we keep,” shares Paul.

“It’s all about relationship, not religion”

ShackDescription (Amazon):
Mackenzie Allen Philips’ youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack’s world forever. In a world where religion seems to grow increasingly irrelevant “The Shack” wrestles with the timeless question, “Where is God in a world so filled with unspeakable pain?” The answers Mack gets will astound you and perhaps transform you as much as it did him. You’ll want everyone you know to read this book!

Some of Paul’s “future tripping” blog post ~ a term now part of my common vernacular among friends:
A couple of years ago, I decided to stop ‘future tripping’.  ‘Future Tripping’ is ‘taking thought for tomorrow’, it is creating imaginations of what is going to happen and then actually take a mental and emotional trip to live there for a bit.  It is ‘what am I going to do if _________ (fill in the blank), what am I going to say if __________, what would our family go through if _____________.  I confess to you that I have experienced many un-realities and their attendant emotions this way.  Paul

I have repeatedly suffered huge financial losses, ended up living under one of the city bridges, been abandoned by my family, suffered the loss of each of my children, had my closest friends turn out to be villains, embarrassed myself in public, was put on the spot and said something stupid, been to my own funeral (more than once), unsuccessfully tried to stop something horrible from happening, failed repeatedly to live up to somebody’s expectations, been horribly maimed in every kind of imaginable accident known to man, lost all my teeth, lost every job I ever had, came down with every disease possible, regularly looked like an idiot, got my lights punched out for no reason, explained my driving to a police officer, lost my friends, went to school and found out I wasn’t wearing anything, got mugged, imagined the situation that I currently was in was permanent…that nothing could ever or would ever change…

…you get the idea.  I have written volumes of imaginations in my own head, things that have no substance, no reality, and are empty, vain imaginations.  But I treat them as if they are real.  I feel all kinds of terrifying and horrible emotions, and scramble to control my life so that these imaginations won’t actually come to pass.  THESE IMAGINATIONS ARE NOT REAL!!!!  But I had spent most of my life in or around them.  GOD DOES NOT DWELL IN ANYTHING THAT IS NOT REAL!!!  In these imaginations, Papa is conspicuously absent.  Why?  Because Papa has no interest in living inside something that isn’t even real to begin with.  So in my ‘vain’ empty imaginations, I am the only ‘god’ there is.  I have to fix things, make sure things turn out right, try to get a handle on people and events…and frankly, I do a very poor job of it…this playing god thing.  So, my life tended to be gripped by fear and I worked hard to get some ‘control’ to prevent these imaginations that I feared.  I had a habit of treating something that had no reality or substance as if it were truly real.

A couple years ago I stopped this insanity.  And here is what I discovered.  JOY has a name (for more…visit Paul’s wonderful blog website).

Jeff Shephard Band ~ Visit the website and hear Traffic Lights and the rest of the band’s repetoire for Free ~ add it to your Myspace profile.


Pharmakon, Dirk Wittenborn

Listen Now“Happiness is the exception–joy a rarity–the normal feeling most human beings have is discontent or longing…maybe there’s an evolutionary purpose,” says Wittenborn.

Wittenborn writes:  “I was born because a man came to kill my father.” Click HERE for video of Dirk talking about “the incident.”

For years I have been both obsessed and mystified by the student/patient who came to kill my family but decided to spare them and in doing so, inspired my father to have another child. My father and my mother were both less than forthcoming about our bogeyman. Pharmakon is a book about a family that is defined and imprisoned by a mystery. The book is fiction, but the seminal event occurred and I have spent my life trying to make sense of it. (from Pharmakon website).

PHARMAKON is a smart, eccentric coming-of-age story about an entire culture’s maturation process, not just one about the workings of a single family. And Mr. Wittenborn is able to channel a lifetime’s worth of psychiatric symptoms into one improbably universal story. — Janet Maslin, The New York Times

DirkWJoin in and listen to a conversation with Dirk Wittenborn about his fascinating life growing up in the midst of a real-life bogeyman, drug abuse, a near-fatal virus, and his amazing varied career including:

  • Novelist (Zoe, Fierce People, Pharmakon)
  • Movie screenwriter & producer (Fierce People, Born Rich, The Lucky Ones)
  • Saturday Night Live writer & performer

Dirk has a new HBO movie coming out next month with Neil Burger (Illusionist), The Lucky Ones starring Tim Robbins, Michael Pena and Rachel McAdams.

Thank you to GoodReads friend, Sheila, who provided some great questions for Dirk re: the symbolism of the wild tropical birds and Casper’s relational perspective.

Link to Dirk’s article about the birth of his daughter amongst 9-11 death and destruction in The London Observer (The Guardian) at

Dirk’s Reading:

  • The French Lieutenant’s Woman by John Fowles
  • Netherland  (“really liked”) by Joseph O’Neill

Links: (see video and listen to podcast)
Click arrow below to listen ~ Subscribe at iTunesTo be entered to win free book, leave a comment below or call 206-309-7318 and leave a voice mail I can play on-air (Thanks, Anne!)Natalie Brown ~ You Gotta Believe from the Podsafe Music Network

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