“To survive one must be reborn, one must overcome one’s childhood, the injustices, and recognize the privileges” Leonard Cohen

quoteup2
I don’t think about my childhood much. I don’t think that it’s a legitimate explanation of one’s life. I think that in order to survive one must be reborn, one must overcome one’s childhood, the injustices, and recognize the privileges. You can’t use your past as an alibi. In the Orient they say ‘to awaken.’ The Christians say ‘to be reborn.’ Whatever the metaphor, I think there comes a moment when we must do it if we want to survive, have self-respect, and take advantage of our new circumstances that we have not yet even touched. The people who die are those who refuse to recognize their new life circumstance and continue to use the old one as an excuse for their shame or laziness. Of course one learns strategies and techniques of survival as a child and I’m not saying one must throw away all they have acquired. But I think there comes a time when the old strategies stop working and life crumbles.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Comme Un Guerrier by Christian Fevret (Throat Culture magazine, 1992). Originally posted Jan 2, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

2 Replies to ““To survive one must be reborn, one must overcome one’s childhood, the injustices, and recognize the privileges” Leonard Cohen”

  1. elaine sapong

    Agree completely, I was a therapist for 15 yrs, people always assume every current problem is because of old childhood issues. Some will not let go of this assumption, those r the ones that will not get better. They will stay stuck and never listen to reason. If u work for an agency they refer to these lost souls as “our bread and butter” encouraging therapist to keep listening to this nonsense. Mental health? Its big business paid for by yr tax dollar. I call u.s. a excessively capitalistic country. Unfortunately I live here, I know I will blame it on my
    Parents.

  2. Charlie

    There is another – at least one – good reason for reviewing your own childhood, and that is to re-live the joys of the old friends who knew your family as well as knowing you, the fun you had, etc. I, personally, am glad I can remember names and most dates. I’m smiling now, because I’m writing about it. No, it wasn’t perfect, but I didn’t realize that. We were poor, my parents were immigrants, the only thing we kids could hold onto was doing well in school, and we all did. It’s just great to look back and see how far I’ve come from that great life (great because it was mine, all of it mine) and I still revel in it.