I ran into a word the other day:" "Nerve Venom." I think it's a wonderfully descriptive term. And it inspired me to write a short poem.
So what is "nerve venom" and what does it do?
When a person is in a down or weakened condition or state of mind, they send out vibes that let others know this. Other people pick up these vibes and those predisposed to being predator-types (even generally good people) become inspired to pounce, to judge, to take advantage of someone less able to protect themselves. "Nerve venom" is the poison these predators put out. That's how I imagine it.
Nerve venom attacks the weakened person's systems: emotionally and physically. The worse part is that it makes people hide their condition; to try to exist behind a mask; to pretend - to themselves and others - that all's ok with them, that they don't have any problems, that they are neither hurt, in pain, or effected by what are important human feelings.
The presence of nerve venom reinforces the desire to create a barrier around ourselves and to loose touch with who we really are and why me matter. As a result, we can feel trapped and unwelcomed in our own skin. We may even start down the path of depression, beginning with a feeling of loss of self-respect and inadequacy. These are some of the hazards of nerve venom.
What's ironic is that those most effected by a nerve-venom-world and most desperately seeking to protect themselves are really subjecting themselves to great harm. Manifestations include: heart disease, diabetes, obesity, lack of movement and exercise, anxiety, even delusional thinking and bizarre behavior.
Sadly, someone with nerve-venom-itis, will have problems with relationships: relationship with others but also with oneself. Those who believe themselves to be not worthy, inferior, or ugly are so busy worrying about themselves that they can't reach out with love and compassion in a way that others can receive and want to reciprocate.
So what is the cure for all this? In my case it's faith; or, in a more general vernacular, a deep appreciation of who we really are and how we are connected to a divine source - one far, far greater than the small part of ourselves that is often so susceptible to greed, ill will, and wrongful thinking ( the three poisons, according to the Buddha) that very little else can matter much.
Nerve Venom does not have to take its course in us however. Nor do we have to pass it on. But if we do not respect ourselves, accept ourselves, honor ourselves for being "perfect" regardless of our challenges and bad steps, then our precious lives will be marred by an unnecessary tragedy.
"God did not give us a spirit of fear but a spirit of love, power, and a sound mind." 2nd Timothy, 1:7
And so, in the belief that that spirit and love is in me, I feel the need to send out one simple message today: Let's end the epidemic of nerve venom! Let's honor who we are, get to know who we are, and begin doing a better job of activating God's gifts in us for the purpose of goodness, beauty and peace around the world.
Here's my poem
This will be short and sweet
I will never ever admit defeat.
No matter where I go
Be it ever so slow
Each day, in every way,
I will also grow.