Theun, I did not mean to be disrespectful in my post to E but I wanted to share my initial reaction and what I saw in it, namely wanting life to make everything easy for me. As I said, I knew there was nothing objectively to complain about. But maybe I'm missing something? You don't say things without reason.
I'm aware of a lack of humility. One of the definitions for humility that I remember is the passive acceptance of the process of life, and I don't often accept life. If things don't go my way, I get angry. (I wish I could honestly enter an LOL here, it sounds so childish).
I don't know how this links in here but having observed a certain line of behaviour in me, I recently remembered when I first was taught about trees and how to identify them and I didn't make much effort to learn them. Later on I got into my Esoteric phase and decided that there was no need to learn about the healing properties of plants. I would just focus on spirituality as I saw it and acquire the ability to talk to plants! Ha! Talk about shortcuts. So no need to make an effort. It comes back to effort again. I haven't got the humility to put in the effort. Maybe I just expect to be given by life because I feel that in a way life owes me?
But you also said to me recently about finding interest (in practising dreaming) and as I'm quite capable of making an effort if I'm interested enough, it can't be simply that I'm too lazy to do anything. For example I'm quite capable to study in an academic sense and perform well in an exam. And I was quite capable to read all the esoteric books instead. But maybe that's because both made me feel superior? And more "humble" pursuits don't hold that "incentive"? I really don't know. I'd be quite prepared to believe this is the case, but then I may by now have made the superiority complex part of my self-image and so see it behind everything.
OK I hope this is not too rushed a reply but I don't want to be tempted to let the moment pass and fall by the wayside again.
Bracing myself :-)
PS I'm very sorry to hear about Russell. I never took the chance to have a relationship with him on all those retreats but I remember his teasing smile and the glint in his eyes fondly. It's a privilege to have known him.
There is no need for you to beat up on yourself. Beating up on oneself resolves nothing and achieves nothing. What you should be working with is your low self-image and your unresolved relationship with your brother. You have lived in your brother's shadow for most of your life, and your self-image is very poor. This is why you sometimes behave the way you do, arrogant, self-opinionated, defensive and disrespectful.
You, like all of us, have much to offer life, my friend. But you NEED to start working on your severe lack of self-respect. You started to get in touch with this at one of the last retreats, but it seems that you have let it slip once again.
With warm regards,