Advice for a healthy mind: Don't run from discomfort

loberle@islandpacket.comAugust 5, 2013 

  • IF YOU GO

    WHEN: noon to 2 p.m. Aug. 4

    WHERE: Unity Church of Hilton Head, 1300 Fording Island Road, Bluffton

    COST: $25

    DETAILS: 843-682-8177

For David Friedman, just thinking positively isn't the answer to a healthy mind.

It's about exchanging bad thoughts for good ones, and holding on to them regardless of what sensation they might bring on.

"Most of us spend our lives running from discomfort," Friedman said.

Friedman is a celebrated composer and songwriter, having conducted the score for Disney films such as "Beauty and the Beast," "Aladdin," "Pocahontas" and "Mulan." He also has served as the musical director for Broadway shows such as "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat," and "Beauty and the Beast." At noon Aug. 4, he will host "The Thought Exchange" seminar, a metaphysical method that he published a book about in 2011, at Unity Church of Hilton Head.

Friedman is in the area as part of the Savannah Voice Festival, where he will be teaching and holding "Listen to My Heart, the Music of David Friedman" at 3 p.m. Aug. 11 at Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church in Savannah.

The seminar involves people looking at their issues and thinking about them differently.

"We'll shift their thinking, having them take on the thoughts they want to take on, but then giving them the tools to stay with those thoughts," Friedman said. "And if you can feel those sensations, you can hold that thought, and you can do the things you want to do and have the things you want to have."

Friedman uses stage performance as an example of negative sensations that have to be felt, but shouldn't be the product of negative thoughts. Before performers go on stage, their hearts pound and their hands sweat and their stomachs hurt.

"If you think that means you can't go on stage, you'll never go on stage," Friedman said. "Anything we do in life that is worth doing comes with a lot of uncomfortable sensations that don't actually mean anything."

Friedman is connected to Unity Church as his life-partner, Shawn Moninger, is a Unity minister in their hometown of Norwalk, Conn.

"Unity is a spiritual community open to people of all religions and allows us to explore practical spirituality," Friedman said. "I hope that all sorts of people from all sorts of background come over and explore this."

RELATED CONTENT

Unity Church of Hilton Head website

The Thought Exchange website

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