People use words and body language to describe pain. An ache is often a muscle, a sharp, intense pain on movement is often a ligament. A deadness, fizzy feeling or deep ache is often an irritated nerve. They say things like, It is in the bone, I feel like a body with a back pain attached. This kind of pain has an emotional as well as a physical component. Most pain goes back to a change of lifestyle, car seat, a different bed on holiday, a sitting job instead of an active job. It aggravates an old accident or life trauma that often happened many years ago. Loss of confidence and self-esteem, a fear of cancer or that an illness might happen again are carried in our memory. Past criticism burns a groove in our memories. The biggest trauma might be when someone we thought loved us has chosen to move out of our life or fallen out through separation or bereavement. Their going is a kind of criticism of us. Inability to take criticism leads to resentment or unreality. When someone devastates us by word or action perhaps we could ask ourselves, Is there any truth in their critical action? Do they see something in us that we don’t see in ourselves? It is like looking out of a house through an open window. Those on the outside can equally well look into our lives and see the whole house with all of its windows. Perhaps they have opened a window to our vulnerable side? Criticism is always based on an incomplete view. The person who criticises us does not see into our hearts, does not know the intensity of our concerns, our fears and doubts. They do not know the memories that we carry. Yet they might simply come to see me with “upper chest pain of non-cardiac origin” to use medical jargon. Their abdomen might be churning with anxiety and their immune system out of balance. 70% of our immune system functions within the abdominal area. Our digestive system is lined with proteins called neuropeptides that signal into the nervous system. The same neuropeptides might be found in the joints of the knees or the jaw. Acupuncture can help to switch the autonomic nervous system either on or off. Gentle but deep abdominal massage helps to release tension and to improve digestion. There is a different between automatic and autonomic. Automatic is like a car that simply drives harder when you push the accelerator down. Autonomic is like the cruise control that relies on constant feedback to keep your car at a level speed. Try listening to the feedback in your body. Un-focus your vision to take in everything around you and respond in a positive way. Direct your mind to think on a positive outcome for every challenge or criticism. Turn crises into opportunities to demonstrate love in a practical way. Someone said to me, Why do I have to love him when I don’t like him.” That is the root challenge of all human relationships. Liking is a feeling. Love is an action based on commitment either to a person, an animal or higher values that see the good in acting from a loving way. It sad that in Egypt the demonstrations always seem to come after Friday prayers. What kind of God do they encounter in Friday prayers that stirs so much intense feeling? Perhaps they do not encounter a true God at all, only a pale human reflection?