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A life of one's own

Author: Marion Milner
Publisher: London ; New York : Routledge, ©2011.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
How often do we ask ourselves, 'What will make me happy? What do I really want from life?' In A Life of One's Own Marion Milner explores these questions and embarks on a seven year personal journey to discover what it is that makes her happy. On its first publication, W.H. Auden found the book 'as exciting as a detective story' and, as Milner searches out clues, the reader quickly becomes involved in the chase.  Read more...
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Named Person: Marion Milner; Marion Milner
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Marion Milner
ISBN: 9780415550642 0415550645 9780415550659 0415550653
OCLC Number: 432998373
Notes: "First published 1934 by Chatto & Windus under the name of Joanna Field."
Description: xxxviii, 180 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm
Contents: Machine generated contents note: 1.First questions --
Discovering that I have nothing to live by --
I decide to study the facts of my life --
By this I hope to find out what is true for me --
2.Keeping a diary --
I try to observe my own experience --
And discover that the more I look the more I see --
But I do not know how to learn from what I see --
3.Exploring the hinterland --
Letting one's mind speak for itself --
It shows that one can have unguessed-at thoughts --
I find it has its own views about God and the world dare not ignore these --
4.The coming and going of delight --
I suspect that moods can be controlled by an internal gesture --
For I discover the power to stop the mind from meddling, discover also the invisible feelers of mind --
Perhaps delight comes only when one stops trying --
But panic comes as well, with the act of surrender --
5.Searching for a purpose --
I try to have a purpose in life --
I find a purpose but do not understand it Note continued: Wanting quality, not quantity, in living --
Concentration begins to come alive --
6.Searching for a rule --
I look for a rule to control moods --
But I see the need to understand rather than to command --
For I find that trying does not master moods --
And `to will' seems a matter of waiting, not pushing --
7.Two ways of looking --
I find that attention can be either wide or narrow --
And wide attention sees a different world --
But I cannot attend widely whenever I choose --
8.Discovering that thought can be blind --
Observations of how children think provide me with a clue --
I learn how to set snares for wandering thoughts --
But am astonished at their childishness --
And observe how blind they are to their own nature --
9.Watching the antics of blind thinking --
I find also that blind thinking has no respect for facts --
It thinks in terms of extremes --
And it is at the mercy of the past, the personal, and of the accidental Note continued: It threatens the whole success of my enterprise --
10.The escape from blind thinking --
I find that emotion and fatigue increase the blindness --
But when expressed, thought can see itself --
So talking teaches you how to think --
And often you must talk to yourself --
11.Fear of a dragon --
What happens when the gesture of wide attention fails? --
What happens to ideas outside the narrow beam of attention? --
Example of a fear that became monstrous when not recognized --
What does fear of death mean? --
12.More outcasts of thought --
I misinterpret a picture in terms of its opposite --
And discover `opposites' in dreams and waking thoughts find how to provide clothing for outcast thoughts --
And discover that dreams can provide clues --
13.Relaxing --
I try to learn control of my mind by relaxing my body --
But it seems that in order to relax physically one must first be active mentally --
So I discover the sagacity of the body Note continued: And I begin to learn how to perceive, not through my head only, but with the whole of my body and the whole of my past --
14.Cart-horse or Pegasus? --
Finding a natural rhythm of awareness --
In the seeing phase I must stop and look back at the blind phase --
But it was not always safe to stop and look --
When watched, the blind phase becomes wise --
15.Discovery of the `other' --
In spite of many discoveries I am still afraid of losing myself --
Then comes a moment of accepted annihilation --
And after this I discover new aspects of communication --
16.Retrospect --
I had discovered something about happiness --
And found that science could help me, but was not the end of my journey --
I thought I had discovered the critical point of willing --
And when I did what I could, then I became aware of an unconscious wisdom that was wiser than I.
Responsibility: Marion Milner (Joanna Field) ; new introduction by Rachel Bowlby.

Abstract:

"First published 1934 by Chatto & Windus under the name of Joanna Field."  Read more...

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"Unlike Woolf [in her book A Room of One's Own], Milner doesn't just tell you it would be nice to have one (of your own), or that women deserve one (of their own); it shows you, step by step, and in Read more...

 
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