Emotional symptoms / by Evan La Ruffa

The dark side of individuality is the practice of acting as though our emotions are the only, or most relevant reality. If how we feel trumps everything else, we risk habitually convincing ourselves of a hugely selfish way of interacting with the world. Our emotions are symptoms. They're not "how things are." And really, how could they be? Any one person's emotions are the product of one intersection point with reality. It's hardly consensus.

That said, what should our emotional symptoms tell us? What process should ensue as the result of noticing our emotions and unpacking their origins?

Perhaps the way we feel really isn't that important.

Perhaps it has more to do with how our feelings affect the way we live. After all, two conclusions can certainly lead to two totally different actions.

If productive mental states open the door for productive realities, we could be well served by parsing emotional symptoms from the realities we ascribe to them.