无处可逃 There is no escape


Ma Zengqiang



One of my earliest memories of fear is that one day when I was a child, the family planning officer came to my door and kept kicking the door down to demand a fine, until they broke in and removed some of my belongings as a fine for coming into this world "beyond birth". The whole time, I hid behind another door and watched them, not saying anything, afraid I would be taken away. Afterwards, I cried and begged my mother to give them all the money/fine! Why not give them money when the family has it!

I was so scared, I didn't know when they would come again until they got the money!


When I joined an international English leaderless group in November 2022, I was told that the group had a "rule" for joining, which the friend who invited me didn't tell me because he thought it was an unreasonable rule. My "illegal" joining caused a scuffle in the group, and one member (an American) solemnly asked me to leave immediately. Suddenly I was overwhelmed with stress, shame, and an internal struggle: By the rules, I shouldn't be here now, but now I am, and members have asked me not to leave. I should have followed her orders -- walked away in shame; Or self-empowerment -- choosing to stay and defend my authority to the death.



In this system, I became involved as an "illegal immigrant," just as my father had brought me into the world illegally.

This made me subconsciously strive for "presence" in the group -- naturally wary, people-pleasing, afraid of getting into trouble, afraid of not being accepted into the group. By the time almost everyone in the group said I was nice, I realized that this was only one side of the coin and that it was familiar -- I was "existing" in accordance with other people's expectations and rules, I was losing myself, it was like the other was "Lord" and I was "servant" -- I was unconsciously becoming a "second-class citizen" in the group.


I remembered that in therapy rooms, it was common to hear clients say they wanted to go to northern Europe, somewhere where there was no one. Or go to Japan, where people have boundaries. They're describing a common feeling that being around people is exhausting. I understand that an important part of this fatigue is that they are often "servants" in interpersonal relationships, while others are "masters". Servants are constantly pleasing their "masters", constantly consuming and emptying themselves. This goes to the concept of authority in group relations -- they have lost their authority, or they never had it, or they didn't know they could have it.


I think that people with social phobia want to escape from the crowd, because the inner objects are all hurtful. Also think of Wuhan in 2020 during the epidemic, the community will often spray disinfection spray into the air, it seems that the outside world is completely toxic. It's really suffocating to feel like you're surrounded by difficult people or that the air is toxic.


They always try to escape from the troubles caused by interpersonal relationships in various ways. Some people constantly swipe their phones, as if it is the easiest pain relief; Some people try to change the environment constantly, but always meet difficult people; Some people want to die, this is too bad. This kind of hard let a person can escape for a while, but not for a lifetime.


Since there is no escape, the only solution is to learn to "blacken" yourself -- to find the other side of the coin and be your "master". Respect your true feelings, embrace your aggression, and be your own "master" -- in charge, not by the nose; No longer fantasizing/relying on another perfect authority, or fantasizing/expecting to enter an environment of "pure truth, goodness and beauty".


In Group Relations Conference, it's easy to assume your role in life. I saw how I habitually wanted to stay in the role of being led, and how I ran away from it in fear; How to have so much internal dissatisfaction with the leader, but also afraid to take on the role of leadership.




In 2020, I attended the Shenyang Group Relations Conference for the first time as a member, and the intuitive feeling is that I pay to suffer. The second time, in 2021, I was invited to work as an administrative assistant and never wanted to do it again. In 2022, he participated in the Tavi China Relations Conference and the IGRC China and the World Conference, both of which he served as an administrator.

During the May Day this year, when I participated in the Small Study Group Consultant Training, a peer joked: "How all the GRCS have you!" Yes, I'm here again at the IGRC Group Relations Conference 2023, this time changing my role from Administrative Assistant to Assistant Director of Administration . From 2020 to 2023, the changes in my feelings in the GRC, as well as the changes in my role, may represent the changes in my inner authority and leadership.

One of the great beauties of group relationships is that there is no "authority" to teach you/make you depend, but rather endless opportunities for self-empowerment/inner authority.


Going back to the very beginning, to the present moment of the leaderless group in November 2022, I didn't leave when members of the group asked me to leave immediately, because the "seeds of authority" had sprouted -- I decided to stay!


I hope everyone can better play their own authority and leadership, live out their own!