Jaak Panksepp, a neuroscientist who helped reveal the emotional lives of animals by tickling rats and listening to their ultrasonic laughter in experiments that upended his field and opened new possibilities for the treatment of depression and other forms of mental illness, died April 18 at his home in Bowling Green, Ohio. He was 73.
I’ve worked with spiritual teachers for many years to “wake up”. The awakening that comes from listening to the division between parts of me—the voices and energies split during early wounding experiences to create the illusion of safety, to survive that which was emotionally experienced as insurmountable. I have learned to watch, to observe, to be the witness to my experience and not get caught up in it as if it were truly real. I’ve learned that what is, is and that so much of this lived life is merely an illusion. When reading Singer’s book I felt a kindred resonance, a sense of coming home to what I know but had stepped away from in the hustle and bustle of being Nancy in some chaotic times. I knew this book appeared in my life at that exact moment for a reason, a reminder to practice once again the meditative moments that bring me closer to the energy that is me and allow me to step away from the noise and confusion of patterned responses in a mind, a brain and a body that try to claim they’re me.