Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Focus Phrase.

John Selby (1945 - ) is an American psychologist and author. Other professional titles include executive counselor videographer and meditation innovator. He is the author of over two dozen self-help, spiritual-growth, business-success and psychology books published in fourteen languages with half a million books in print.
Raised on cattle ranches in California and Arizona. he attended Princeton University, UC Berkeley and The Radix Institute.
Selby is an innovator in cognitive-shifting psychological techniques, having done mind-management research for NIH[1] at the New Jersey Neuro-psychiatric Institute, working under Dr. Humphrey Osmond MD[2]. He also pioneered the development of and has apparently coined the term Focus phrase for inducing particular cognitive changes.
His three corporate-training texts are: Executive Genius, Take Charge Of Your Mind, and Listening With Empathy .
Cognitive shifting is a method used in awareness management describing the mental process of re-directing one's focus of attention away from one fixation and toward a different focus of attention. This shifting process can be initiated either by habit and unconsciously, or as an act of conscious volition.
In the general framework of cognitive therapy and awareness management, cognitive shifting refers to the conscious choice to take charge of one's mental habits—and redirect one's focus of attention in helpful, more successful directions. In the term's specific usage in corporate awareness methodology, cognitive shifting is a performance-oriented technique for refocusing attention in more alert, innovative, charismatic and empathic directions.
In cognitive therapy, as developed by its founder Aaron T. Beck[3] and others, a client is taught to shift his or her cognitive focus from one thought or mental fixation to a more positive, realistic focus—thus the descriptive origins of the term "cognitive shifting". In "third wave" ACT therapy cognitive shifting is employed not only to shift from negative to positive thoughts, but also to shift into a quiet state of mindfulness. Cognitive shifting is also employed quite dominantly in the meditative-health procedures of medical and stress-reduction research.
In therapy a client is taught first to identify and accept a negative thought or attitude, and then to allow the cognitive shifting process to re-direct attention away from the negative fixation, toward a chosen aim or goal that is more positive—thus the "accept and choose act" from whence comes the ACT therapy name.
Books such as The Way Of The Tiger, and The Creative Manager have shown how cognitive shifting principles apply to everyday life. Decades ago Rollo May[4] taught the process of conscious choosing and cognitive shifting at Princeton in his psychology lectures.
Among the first references to the general mental process of focal shifting or cognitive shifting (the term cognitive is a relatively new term), the Hindu Upanishads are probably the first written documentation of the meditative process of redirecting one's focus of attention in particular disciplined directions. Cognitive shifting is the core process of all meditation, especially in Kundalini meditation but also in Zen meditation and even in Christian mysticism where the mind's attention is re-directed (or shifted) toward particular theologically-determined focal points.
The primary cognitive technology that is used for cognitive shifting is called "focus phrase" methodology. This term has emerged from the actual process in which cognitive shifting is encouraged or even provoked in a client or any other person. The person states clear intent through a specially-worded focus phrase—and then experiences the inner shift that the focus phrase elicits.
Another term sometimes used for focus phrases is "elicitor statements". In some methodologies focus phrases are said as a set of 4 to 7 statements, fairly quickly and to oneself. In other techniques a single focus phrase is held in the mind during a whole morning or day, and perhaps changed each new day during the week.
"Focus Phrase" is a term traditionally used in cognitive-therapy and awareness-management discussions, and now in more general use to describe elicitor statements that evoke a desired refocusing of attention. Psychologically related terms are elicitor phrase or statement of intent.
The psychological term "Focus Phrase" is now used by therapists and life coaches as a general term.
Based both on new research in cognitive science and on cognitive-shifting studies of ancient meditation techniques, focus phrases have been used as a meditative tool and therapy aid, and are being introduced as at-work attentive boosts. They are carefully designed by professionals to almost instantly redirect the mind's attention specifically toward worthwhile sensations, thoughts, images, and other mental experiences. Focus phrases are highly effective in evoking rapid shifts in mental content, quality of awareness, sensory perception, and general inner experience. Therefore they are considered of high value in meditative methods, and even in creativity-boost techniques.
As explained by the founder of cognitive therapy, Aaron Beck[3], our chronic thought flows (stream of consciousness) tend to dominate our inner experience and stimulate our behavior and emotions. If we want to change our inner experience (for instance from a negative mood to a more positive mood) we need to take charge of the thoughts we are holding in our minds, and state our intent to shift into a preferable mood or quality of consciousness.
In corporate awareness-training, focus phrases are used not to change the outer world, but to rapidly shift inner attention, and thus alter personal experience and behavior. For instance, in order to shift rapidly from being lost in thought to present-moment alertness, the following core focus phrase drawn both from perceptual psychology and ancient Yoga meditative tradition is used: "I feel the air flowing in and out of my nose." Immediately the words have the psychological power to turn your attention toward the actual breathing experience - which in turn awakens your awareness to sensory experience in the present moment.
Elicitor statements using this general 'focus phrase technology' for mental refocusing can be used to redirect attention
• toward a more positive mood ("I let go of my worries, and feel peaceful inside"),
• toward more creative states of mind ("I am open to receive insight into my dilemma"),
• toward interpersonal relating ("I accept this person just as they are"), or
• toward any other intent to improve one's experience and behavior.

John Selby attributes his initial introduction to the process of cognitive shifting to Jiddu Krishnamurti[5], whom he considers his early spiritual teacher, and also to his training with Rollo May[4] at Princeton.
Notice the use of the phrase “I AM” in specially-worded focus phrases.
[1] The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services and is the primary agency of the United States government responsible for biomedical and health-related research.
[2] Humphry Fortescue Osmond (1917 - 2004) was a British psychiatrist known for inventing the word psychedelic and for using psychedelic drugs in medical research.
[3] http://goalhypnosis.blogspot.ca/2011/05/cbt.html
[4] http://pvrguymale.blogspot.ca/2011/12/opposite-of-courage-in-our-society-is.html
[5] http://pvrguymale.blogspot.ca/2009/02/krishnamurti.html

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom.

Rollo May (1909 – 1994) was an American existential psychologist. He authored the influential book Love and Will during 1969. He is often associated with both humanistic psychology and existentialist philosophy. May was a close friend of the theologian Paul Tillich. His works include Love and Will and The Courage to Create.

May was influenced by American humanism, and interested in reconciling existential psychology with other philosophies, especially Freud's.

May considered Otto Rank (1884-1939)[1] to be the most important precursor of existential therapy. Shortly before his death, May wrote the foreword to Robert Kramer's edited collection of Rank’s American lectures.
“I have long considered Otto Rank to be the great unacknowledged genius in Freud’s circle,”
wrote May (Rank, 1996, p. xi).
May used some traditional existential terms in a slightly different fashion than others, and he invented new words for traditional existentialist concepts. Destiny, for example, could be "thrownness" combined with "fallenness"— the part of our lives that is determined for us, for the purpose of creating our lives. He also used the word "courage" to signify resisting anxiety.
He defined certain "stages" of development:
Innocence – the pre-egoic, pre-self-conscious stage of the infant. An innocent is only doing what he or she must do. However, an innocent does have a degree of will in the sense of a drive to fulfill needs.
Rebellion – the rebellious person wants freedom, but does not yet have a good understanding of the responsibility that goes with it.
Decision – The person is in a transition stage in their life such that they need to be more independent from their parents and settle into the "ordinary stage". In this stage they must decide what to do with their life, and fulfilling rebellious needs from the rebellious stage.
Ordinary – the normal adult ego learned responsibility, but finds it too demanding, and so seeks refuge in conformity and traditional values.
Creative – the authentic adult, the existential stage, self-actualizing and transcending simple egocentrism.
These are not "stages" in the traditional sense. A child may certainly be innocent, ordinary or creative at times; an adult may be rebellious. The only association with certain ages is in terms of importance: rebelliousness is more important for a two year old or a teenager.
May perceived the sexual mores of the 1960s and 1970s, as well as commercialization of sex and pornography, as having influenced society such that people believed that love and sex are no longer associated directly. According to May, emotion has become separated from reason, making it acceptable socially to seek sexual relationships and avoid the natural drive to relate to another person and create new life. May believed that sexual freedom can cause modern society to neglect more important psychological developments. May suggests that the only way to remedy the cynical ideas that characterize our times is to rediscover the importance of caring for another, which May describes as the opposite of apathy.
His first book, The Meaning of Anxiety, was based on his doctoral dissertation, which in turn was based on his reading of the 19th century philosopher Søren Kierkegaard. His definition of anxiety is
"the apprehension cued off by a threat to some value which the individual holds essential to his existence as a self" (1967, p. 72).
He also quotes Kierkegaard:
"Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom".
In 1956, he edited the book Existence with Ernst Angel and Henri Ellenberger. Existence helped introduce existential psychology to the US.
Love and Will” is another of May’s famous texts. This book investigates the shifting viewpoints of love and sex in human behaviour. During the “Sexual Revolution” in the 1960s, many individuals were exploring their sexuality. “Free sex” was replacing the ideology of free love. May explains that love is intentionally willed by an individual, whereas sexual desire is the complete opposite. Real human instinct reflected upon deliberation and consideration. May then shows that to give in to these impulses does not actually make one free, but to resist these impulses is the meaning of being free.
[1] http://pvrguymale.blogspot.ca/2011/12/opposite-of-courage-in-our-society-is.html

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Significant Emotional Event

A Significant Emotional Event is an experience (or experiences) that creates an emotional meaning – a belief if you like – which affects us in later life. That emotional meaning could be positive (enjoying a School play as a kid; enjoying public speaking as an adult) or it could be negative (hating a school play as a kid; hating public speaking as an adult).

An event often becomes a Significant Emotional Event if it is an intense experience, for example something traumatic which creates great emotional power. The younger you are, the more difficult it is to deal with that emotional power. Your reaction to your parents divorce is vastly different depending on whether you are 5 or 35. If your parents divorce when you are 5, you could be shattered, inconsolable and probably forming beliefs about yourself that do not reflect the reality of the situation. A 35 year would have various responses.
(The fact is, children do not have available to them the full array of thought processes that an Adult has; this leads to invalid conclusions being made – “It was my fault …” ).

An event can also become a Significant Emotional Event based on an individual’s threshold. Some people have less capacity when handling information being sent by their nerves, which might be why different people have different capacities when dealing with Stress.

A series of events could become a Sensitizing Event based upon repetition – for example constantly failing at an exam could form the belief that “I’m no good at exams”. In this example, failing the exam wasn’t as traumatic as the divorce example noted above, but the cumulative effect of failing repeatedly was enough for the mind to attribute a significant emotional meaning to the experience.

So a Significant Emotional Event is anything in our past that forms beliefs or behaviors in the present, because of the emotional meaning given to the event at the time (a time where, often, you probably weren’t old enough to fully understand what was happening).

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Illusions for Realities: Fantasy masquerading as science?

The Chevreul Pendulum Test. Used in hypnosis to show the client the power of the mind and concentration.

Chevreul was curious about "the exploring pendulum" used to analyze chemical compounds, a method employed by his colleagues at the time.
Chevreul did what none of his predecessors had thought of doing. He conducted the equivalent of what we would call a double-blind trial. He blindfolded himself and then he had an assistant place or remove the glass plate between the pendulum and a bowl of mercury without his knowledge. Under these conditions, nothing happened. Chevreul concluded,
"So long as I believed the movement possible, it took place;
but after discovering the cause I could not reproduce it."

His experiments with the pendulum show how easy it is "to mistake illusions for realities, whenever we are confronted by phenomena in which the human sense-organs are involved under conditions imperfectly analyzed."
His research on the "magic pendulum", Dowsing rods and table-turning is revolutionary. In his paper "De la baguette"(1864), Chevreul explains how human muscular reactions, totally involuntary and subconscious, are responsible for seemingly magical movements. In the end Chevreul discovered that once a person holding divining rods/magic pendulum became aware of the brain's reaction, the movements stopped and could not be willingly reproduced.

In 1853 Michael Faraday, while studying table tipping, concluded:
that honest, intelligent people can unconsciously engage in muscular activity that is consistent with their expectations

The ideomotor effect is a psychological phenomenon wherein a subject makes motions unconsciously. The term was first used in a scientific paper discussing the means through which the Ouija board produced its results, by William Benjamin Carpenter in 1852, whence the alternative term Carpenter effect. In the paper, Carpenter explained his theory that muscular movement can be independent of conscious desires or emotions.
Carpenter, in 1852, wanted to show that a variety of currently popular phenomena had conventional scientific explanations rather than the widely believed supernatural ones. The phenomena he tackled included dowsing ("water witching"[1]), the magic pendulum, certain aspects of mesmerism, spiritualists' "table turning," and Reichenbach's "Odylic force." [Scientists have abandoned concepts such as Odic force. In western popular culture, the name is used similarly to qi or prana in reference to spiritual energies or vital force associated with living things.]

Pendulum charts: Fantasy masquerading as science?

On August 31st, 1886 Michel Eugene Chevreul celebrated his 100th birthday.
He managed to celebrate two more.

[1] Finding water underground.
• A 1948 study tested 58 dowsers' ability to detect water. None of them were more reliable than chance.
• A 1979 review examined many controlled studies of dowsing for water, and found that none of them showed better than chance results.
• In a study in Munich 1987–1988, 500 dowsers were initially tested for their "skill" and the experimenters selected the best 43 among them for further tests. Of the 43 pre-selected and extensively tested candidates at least 37 showed no dowsing ability. The results from the remaining 6 were said to be better than chance.
• During a 2004 study in Germany, the three-day test of some 30 dowsers showed results which were no better than chance

Sunday, March 4, 2012

I love GIFs

March GIF, I love GIFs

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Hypnosis, X-ray vision and Clairvoyance.

Akin to clairvoyance is X-ray vision, the power to see through opaque bodies — supernormal sight induced by hypnotic suggestion. An authentic case of X-ray vision is that of Leo Brett, the twelve-year-old son of Dr. F. M. Brett, formerly Professor of Bacteriology and Physical Diagnosis in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Boston, reported with great detail in The Coining Age, November, 1899. Dr. Brett gives this account of his discovery of the power in his boy: "Leo had had scarlet-fever when young, and it had left his stomach very weak. His food was not being properly assimilated, and his general health suffered in consequence. As other treatment did not result so favorably as I could wish, it occurred to me that he might be benefited by hypnotic suggestion. The result was most gratifying, as he began to improve immediately and was soon perfectly well. He has since remained in excellent health. One day, when I had hypnotized him, he said: 'Papa, I can see the bones in your body.'
This led to examination and experimentation, and I found, to my great surprise, that when under hypnotic suggestion he was able to look right into and through the human body, apparently seeing the internal organism as readily as you or I would see objects through the window."

The doctor presents the following instance as illustrative of the boy's strange gift. A patient from Fall River, who was accompanied by his father, a gentleman of intelligence, thoroughly familiar with the uses of the X-ray, was a subject for examination.

Dr. Brett called his son Leo in from the street. The boy came with face flushed and eyes dancing from the excitement of his play. He sat down, and was almost instantly hypnotized by his father, who, as soon as he was unable to open his eyes, said to him: "Now, Leo, you will be able to see the young man's arm plainly when you open your eyes. Open your eyes." The command was promptly obeyed, and the boy was then requested to look at both arms and to describe what he saw. This he did, and in a few moments stated that he could see the left clearly, but the right arm he could not see plainly.

I will state here that the patient had his coat on, so it was impossible to see the nature of the trouble with the arm, although it was perfectly apparent from the way he held his right arm that it was wounded. The father then said, " We had better remove the coat." This was done, after which the boy was requested to look again.
He said, immediately: "Why, some of the bone of the upper part of the arm is gone."
"Well, do you see any bone-formation going on?"
"On the inside," he replied, "the bone is growing, because I see a place between the old bones where it looks like gristle, and I think the bone is forming there; but on the outer side there is a place where there is no bone."
He was then requested by the father to show just the location, which he did by touch. His father also requested him to draw a diagram of the bone, which he did, showing exactly where he contended there was no bone on the outer side and the part of the arm where the new-formed bone appeared more like gristle than bone. The father of the patient then stated that this description corresponded with the opinion given by Dr. McBumey, who examined the arm when the patient had been under treatment at Roosevelt Hospital, in New York, and it was also substantially the opinion held by the physicians in Fall River.

Leo was then requested to see if he could not perceive anything else. He looked very intently. He seemed to be concentrating his gaze almost as a microscopist would in examining something quite fine. He was seated about three and one-half feet from the subject. Finally he said: "I see holes, but I do not see anything."
The doctor said: "Look again."
He replied: "I don't see anything there. I see some holes."
The doctor then asked the father if he had any objection to his telling Leo how the accident occurred. Permission being given, the doctor explained to his son that the young man's arm had been shot almost off, and the father added that there were probably about five hundred pellets shot into the arm, that it occurred a year ago last January, that several operations had been performed, and a great majority of the shot had been removed, but that the X-ray still showed some to remain. The doctor then said again, "Look and see if you cannot see any of the shot."
Again the boy looked very intently over the arm, and replied: "No sir; there are none that I can see. I see holes, but no shot."

It was suggested that as the accident occurred so long ago there would not be any holes in the tissues, and that it might be possible that what appeared to be holes to the child were in reality the shot. The doctor then asked him to point with his hand to where the holes appeared. This he did, and the father said, "That is exactly the place where the shots are." He then asked him if he saw any other holes, and he said:
"Yes; up there," pointing to another place.
"How many?"
The father said that this was correct. The X-ray revealed three shots in that location, but to the boy they appeared merely as holes. The doctor then asked him how many holes there appeared near the bone where he had indicated.
He replied: "Quite a number. They are very close. I do not know how many."

The doctor then pressed him. "Should you say there are ten, fifteen, twenty, sixty, or a hundred?"
"I should say there were at least fifteen," replied the boy; "and there seem to be some a little way off from the bone- only a few."

The father remarked that the X-ray showed about twenty shots in the locality to which the boy referred.

When the examination was over, the doctor released Leo with a word and the suggestion that he rest for a minute. When he came into a perfectly normal state he was able to talk about and describe what he had seen just as intelligently as he did while hypnotized, but, of course, he was no longer able to see in any other than a normal way.
Published February, 1908.
It would clearly not be long before reports were received of people claiming to have precisely the X-ray eyes mooted by Jules Bois. The most detailed of these concerned Afley Leonel Brett, the eleven-year-old son of Massachusetts physician Dr Frank Wallace Brett. Dr Brett was in the habit of hypnotising his son (we are not told why), but knew nothing of his son’s accomplishment until, one afternoon, in November 1897, ‘upon coming out of a hypnotic state into which he had cast him, he made use of this curious expression, “
Oh, papa, I can see your bones!
” ’ (Anon 1899, 6). Not only was the boy able ‘to see through the usual clothing, underclothing, and flesh of a man, and to observe the bones and internal organs as clearly and as accurately as the ordinary eye reads a newspaper’ (Anon 1899, 6), he could see more detail than X-rays provided:
Outside clothing, linen, underwear, the human skin and flesh itself, are as nothing in his sight. The bones of the subject stand out in bold relief, and the organs of the person upon whom he may be looking are spread before him as though on a chart. These miraculous eyes also behold the human anatomy in its true colours, red, white, brown, even to the blue of the venous blood. This is impossible with the X rays. Under its use everything appears of the same shade. (Anon 1899)
From text written to accompany Phillip Warnell’s film, The Girl With X-Ray Eyes (2008). A version of this text was also given as a talk given for the annual conference of the British Society for Literature and Science, Keele University, March 29, 2008.
Below is from: Mataura Ensign , Issue 660, 11 November 1899, Page 4

Natalya Nikolayevna Demkina (born 1987 in Saransk, Mordovian SSR, Soviet Union), usually known under the hypocoristic naming Natasha Demkina, is a Russian woman who claims to possess a special vision that allows her to look inside human bodies and see organs and tissues, and thereby make medical diagnoses. Since the age of ten, she has performed readings in Russia. Under studies in the states she’d been given a list of the conditions and in Japan the diagnosis was to be restricted to a single specific part of the body–the head, the torso, or extremities–which she was to be informed of in advance.
No clairvoyant, medical intuitive, medium or seer should have any prior knowledge of the facts or people involved prior to demonstrating their ability.
The confirmation should come with the test results.