A few years ago I had the opportunity to facilitate a few breathwork sessions for a financially successful and retired businessman. He was 59 years old at the time. He became interested in rebirthing because he thought it may help him with some difficulties he had in certain areas of his life along with some fatigue and depression. As he shared with me some childhood stories, I saw a pattern of rationalization developing.
In one instance, he told me that when he was five or six years old his parents gave him a shiny, new red wagon for Christmas. He loved his new wagon and played with it every chance he could. After two wonderful weeks, a neighbor boy stole it from his garage.
When he went to his parents about it they told him that it was ok because the boy must have needed it more than he did. He was without his wagon and that was the end of it. When I asked him how he felt about it, he just reiterated what his parents had told him, that the other boy needed it more than he did. I asked him again and he said the same thing.
I gently stated that I wanted to know how he felt about what happened and not his rationalized interpretation of the event. After a while he was finally able to admit that he was hurt by it, that his parents made him feel unimportant and worthless.
When we try to rationalize our experiences, we are avoiding our feelings. By denying his feelings of worthlessness and unimportance, these are suppressed into his subconscious which in turn unconsciously drives his actions to reach out and strive for external importance, validity, and worth. The sad thing is it can't be found outside himself so more internal conflict develops. This can be a problem for both himself and those close to him.
The real problem is that because he is dependent on getting his feelings of importance, validity, and worth from met from outside himself, subconsciously he will build resentment because his needs can never be met in this manner. This cycle constantly generates more and more inner conflict, stress, and anxiety.
Of course this one incident wasn't responsible for all his current issues, but it was a good place to start.
We all need to come to understand that we need to feel our feelings, regardless of how uncomfortable they may be. We need to do this as long as necessary so they stay in consciousness long enough to be integrated and released. Although this may be painful, it allows our feelings and emotions to cycle through consciousness and be discharged.
Without this understanding and practice, karma will continue to wreak havoc on our experiences and relationships.