Why Hypnotherapy is Disrespectful

[Written around 2004.]

Hypnotherapy demands passivity on the part of patients. Patients go into the hypnotherapist’s office, sit or lie down, and become unconscious, which is the requirement for entering a hypnotic state, i.e. a trance. And then they don’t consciously do anything. Instead the therapist does the “work,” meaning, he probes around inside their psyche, decides what’s wrong, and then proceeds to fix it…supposedly. Continue reading

So What the Hell Is Narcissism Anyway?

[Written around 2004.]

Everyone is born narcissistic – that is, full of intense need. This is healthy. If a child is lucky his parents will meet all of his needs and he will grows optimally, straight through to enlightenment, straight through his development with no traumas to bog him down. But when they fail – and where they fail – he has to bury his neglected needs in self-protection. These then become a fixed part of his unconscious personality, and he will go through the rest of his life in an unconscious desperation to heal. These unhealed parts of him become the kernel of his narcissism. Continue reading

What Does High Functioning So Often Disguise?

[Written around 2004.]

Society considers those who function at a high level to have reached the pinnacle of success – and mental health. Many modern insurance companies won’t even reimburse for your therapy if you function at too high of a level. The irony is that most high functioning people don’t want to look deeply within anyway – be it in psychotherapy or any other form of self-reflection. They live their lives without ever really exploring why they live the way they do, why they surround themselves with their closest intimates, why they have children and raise them the way they do, and who they even are. To look too deeply inside would all too often reveal the lies beneath the façade, the pain and misery behind the comfort and numbness, the unhappiness and resignation behind the seeming success. Continue reading

The Limits of Faith Healers

[Written around 2004.]

The world is full of faith healers who work their miracles – or at least presume to. They perform spinal surgeries with rusty knives and cure hernias with their fingertips. But what do they really heal?  When it comes to healing broken emotions they are lost. And to the soul truly aspiring to know himself at his deepest level, they lack value and are a regressive and negative force. Continue reading

Shouldn’t The Best Therapy Be Free?

[Written around 2004.]

Charging fees is a backbone of what keeps the therapy process professional. Not only does it allows the therapist to survive in the world, but it affirms his self-respect. He gives the best of himself to his patients, and they return the gift with something of value. Patients who pay a fee make a sacrifice – and thus buy a service. This is invaluable for them, because when the going gets ugly in therapy, as it invariably does if the process goes well, they must feel comfortable expressing their negative feelings – which are often toward the therapist – as freely as they need to. This step is made all the more difficult if patients are not clear that they – and no one else – have bought the therapist’s service. Continue reading

What Makes A Healer?

[Written around 2004.]

A healer must be humble. Humility is optimal openness to learning. Humility requires suspending one’s preconceived confidence in what is right and what is wrong and listening on a more fundamental level. The healer must be a great listener. He must be open to entering the depths of another’s story, another’s wisdom, and another’s truth. Everyone carries a lifetime of truth in their pain, their symptoms, and their buried hopes, and he must relate to it if he is to help them remove their psychic daggers from their chest. Continue reading

Why Live If We’re All Only Going To Die Anyway?

[Written around 2004.]

Life is our one grand chance to contribute this world. This is our one chance to bring peace to our existences and to that of others. This is our one chance to find out the truth, and to manifest it. This is our one chance to find enlightenment and to shine at our brightest. This is our one chance to find out what it really means to live. Continue reading

To Those Who Have Given Up Hope

[Written around 2004.]

Alice Miller, perhaps the best published psychology writer to date, opens her most famous book, The Drama of the Gifted Child (first published in 1979), with this sentence: “Experience has taught us that we have only one enduring weapon in our struggle against mental illness: the emotional discovery of the truth about the unique history of our childhood.” Few truer words have been written. Yet eighteen years later she closes the afterward of the same book (the 1997 edition) with the following sentence: “I spent a long time looking for a total exploration of my childhood history. Now I see that this was hubris” (her italics). Alice Miller gave up, and in so doing lost her place as a worthwhile role model for the truth seeker. Continue reading

Why People Are So Terrified of Death

[Written around 2005.]

People are only terrified of dying if parts of themselves have never consciously lived. They may have attained wealth, raised families, achieved fame, and earned societal respect, but this is not living. Real life is about being fully conscious, and for the fully conscious few, death is no terror. Continue reading

Suicide: The Ultimate Way To Avoid the Painful Truth

[Written around 2004.]

People commit suicide when the pain of lying to themselves is unbearable and the pain of telling the truth is even worse. Here the journey to manifest enlightenment – to heal all one’s childhood traumas – feels hopeless. The person’s childhood cemented the notion that deep, consistent parental love was completely out the question and that his parents were nothing more than shams. But he could never face that fact, because it was too painful – and they would have only rejected him all the more. Instead he denies it and turns his hopelessness and rage and anger toward himself. He swallows the worst of his parents into his psyche and he fantasizes that death will free him, and bring him peace. But it will not. Death is no relief. Death will only end his journey and kill his potential to grow. Continue reading

Self-Defense: Only Valid If You Know Your SELF

[Written around 2005.]

The only justification for killing another person is self-defense. The problem is, most people do not have the slightest clue who their “self” actually is. They were so attacked and invaded and traumatized in their childhoods by the very ones who should have been defending and nurturing them – their parents – that they grow into adulthood with a misperception of their boundaries as individuals. As a consequence much or most of their true self remains split-off from consciousness, and unless they heal they can only access their denied parts through projecting them onto others. In so doing they lose their personal boundaries. They see other people as extensions of themselves. Continue reading

Racism: A Safety Valve Against Hating Your Parents

[Written around 2004.]

From the perspective of the family system, the greatest crime for a child is to feel and express his legitimate hatred for his parents. He can feel all the love he wants, but when he flips the coin he is in big trouble. The punishment is rejection by the family, even ejection from it, and no child can face that. It would kill him. This forces him to put his anger somewhere else – somewhere safer. Continue reading

What Lurks Behind Guilt

[Written around 2005.]

There are two types of guilt: healthy guilt, in which you feel remorse for having done something that hurts the honest growth or healing process of another, and unhealthy guilt, in which you feel guilty for telling the truth. Most children grow up feeling incredible degrees of unhealthy guilt about their existences. They feel they’ve done something wrong simply by being, and from their family’s perspective they did: they were born honest. Continue reading

The Truth About Spirituality

[Written around 2004.  Of note, as of 2013:  “Spirituality” is another word I basically presently avoid using, because it’s so radically misused.  But…since this is an historical essay, I’ll leave it as is.  But, words like “spirituality” aside, the important thing is that I still stand by the ideas in the essay…]

A spiritual person is connected with his spirit. To do this fully he must have access to his deepest psyche, and thus have resolved his most ancient psychic traumas. To get there he will have passed through hell, and thus will know how to help others get out of there too. If he has not resolved his traumas, however, they will block his conscious connection with his spirit, and will stunt his burgeoning spirituality. Continue reading

The Essential Difference Between Animals and Humans

The thing that most clearly differentiates humans from animals is the capacity to self-reflect.  Although chimpanzees, our closest genetic relative, can be taught to do almost everything humans can, albeit at a more primitive level, they cannot self-reflect.  They cannot take that mental leap of stepping outside of themselves and studying themselves from an alternate perspective, even having a relationship with themselves—of dialoguing with their internal self that they are alive, that their heart is beating, that their life has purpose and meaning, that they will die someday, and, ultimately, that they can make creative, conscious changes in their internal and external environment based on what they learn on their life’s journey.  This is the realm of humanity—and perhaps of dolphins and whales too, though if this is the case then I would agree with John Lilly, the famous dolphin researcher, who called dolphins “the humans of the sea.” Continue reading

The Enlightened Person Balances Masculinity and Femininity

[Written around 2006.]

We are all comprised of the masculine and the feminine. Our job on earth is to balance the two within ourselves in accordance with our soul’s deepest truth.

The masculine is the mind, the feminine the heart. The feminine is the emotional, the masculine the rational. The masculine is form, the feminine content. The feminine is passion, the masculine perception. The masculine drives the car, but the feminine is the engine and the gasoline. The feminine is the root of the masculine. Continue reading

Truth Is Not Subjective

[Written around 2004.]

There is but one truth. This one truth is reality. Reality is what is, whether we see it or not. Although truth is not subjective, our perspectives on truth can be subjective. Until a person becomes fully enlightened – and can see full truth – his vision of truth will be at least partially distorted. He will believe things to be true that are false. His knowledge of cause and effect will be limited. He will lie to himself. Continue reading

The Root Cause of Addiction

[Written around 2004.]

The root of addiction is unresolved emotional trauma. When traumas, be they extreme or mild, are not resolved they leave behind a slew of painful, unprocessed feelings in the unconscious. These feelings are never content to remain silent and instead clamor for release. When they express themselves openly and without disguise this activates the healing process. The healing process, however, is so painful and potentially discombobulating that very few people, unless they have a great deal of mature external support and internal self-understanding, can dare undertake it. Continue reading