Overcoming Advertising



Underlying –Whims, Goals and Aims ———–An Introduction to Higher Consciousness Part One

Since we have egos we are awash in a sea of whims (sounds like little mythic creatures, doesn’t it?). Whims are the driving force behind advertising, capitalism, money and inequality. There are no escaping whims. The only hope is recognizing whims as they arise and being at choice.

Whims then are much like the pursuit of happiness.

Whims arise from curiosity and can come from a creative urge within us. The arising of whims within us may not come from ego but when we pursue a whim then trouble may ensue because ego is most often the pursuant. Whims then are much like the pursuit of happiness or just the pursuit of most anything.

The formula of ego, whims, most monetary systems and inequality is a finite formula in a zero sum game resulting in diminishing returns.

When we engage in pursuit we assume a lack within. We separate ourselves from our innate happiness or our curiosity in order to find it. This seems counter intuitive. This is the way of ego and a linear space-time reality. Our language and ego – intertwined reflects a separation of the self from a desire for something. Ego, whims, capitalism and money produces gaps between a beginning coming from nothing – initiating a step,  a middle – an action and an end achieving something. The formula of ego, whims, most monetary systems and inequality is a finite formula in a zero sum game resulting in diminishing returns. [In mathematical theory a zero-sum game is always competitive and results in winners and losers – see https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero-sum_game] This kind of finite system is a breeding ground for greed, possessiveness, fear / paranoia, oppression, isolationism and ultimately an apocalyptic ending of humanity.

leads to the ultimate ending – the apocalypse.

The a priori supposition of this finite zero-sum game base does not allow for the sacredness of being. All the finite players become obsessed with having more and as a result of the diminishing return emotions based on an infinite non-zero sum game such as love, empathy, compassion are removed so the focus on more grows more intense. Addictive behaviors to satisfy the charge in winning ultimately fail due to diminishing returns. The people driven by this model cease to recognize being, treat others and themselves as things including the bounty of Earth and Earth as being. Using people and resources in this manner leads to the ultimate ending – the apocalypse.

On the other end of the spectrum aims arise from the infinite and are couched in systems of cooperation and interdependence.

An infinite non-zero sum game is about the win/win and is based on interdependence with regard to increasingly complex societal systems. Survival of the human species on Earth is an infinite non-zero sum game because humans and all biological and non-biological beings are sacred and must cooperate in order to survive. Put in another way this is a system of Love connecting and including all beings in a sacred manner.

Returning to whims in the context of capitalism we can see that the variety of instruments of this money making system are in the business of generating conditions for whims to foment in buying frenzies. Advertising under psychographics or strategies to target consumers based on data mining for lifestyle, personality, attitudes, beliefs etc.

Aims belong to the infinite.

On the other end of the spectrum aims arise from the infinite and are couched in systems of cooperation and interdependence. An aim has no beginning and no end. Aims belong to the infinite. An aim that continually renews me and helps align me to the path of the divine that flows within me is: to relieve suffering. I could work towards this aim for the rest of my life and never be finished.

Being is that which is. Being transcends space and time.

Aims arise from being. What is being? Philosophers and mystics have grappled with defining and/or describing being. Being is that which is. Being transcends space and time. Words, because they arise from a linear time-space reality systems cannot describe the depth, breath and the divinity of being. Once we attempt to solve a mystery we bring it out of the realm of the unknowable and destroy its essence. Being is analogous to mystery.

surrendering into the divine

Discovering being is about surrendering into the divine, releasing ego if only for a moment and embracing a wider higher consciousness. There are no pat formulas or teachings that can assist the student in discovering being.

Goals are the bridges between aims and whims. Goals have beginnings, middles and ends. They can arise from the infinite or the finite. Aims can be expressed in goals, but goals cannot be adequately expressed in aims. Whims tickle the edges of goals.

Part of the problem with whims and advertising is the appeal to the ego in a finite mindset. A well-developed being sees advertising as a finite whim based game. Being can assist us in noticing whim as a momentary desire of ego for a temporary drug-high of fleeting happiness and remind ego of the lasting happiness within.

The real work of letting go of attachment to the temporary or fleeting desires of ego begins. Oppositional thinking and action with regard to advertising produced whims can help us resist corporations that use psychographics to sell stuff to us. For instance if you see an ad on the internet that sparks your interest in the moment – ignore it. Most likely we forget about the spark. Advertising repeats the tease in an effort to get you to click on the link. Again, ignore it and wait. Does the tease persist?

If the tease persists ask yourself:

  • How does following this whim support my aim? If it does not leave it behind – release the attachment.
  • Is the whim a distraction that detracts from my long-term or immediate purpose? If so, release it.
  • Where does the whim exist on my list of priorities? Low, middle or high? If its high, use a pen or pencil to write it down. Don’t pursue it immediately. Decide on a time to look or investigate the product, service or experience. If its middle or low let it go and move on.


If you don’t know what your purpose is then meditation could assist you in uncovering it within yourself and this takes time. If meditation is not your thing, explore a book, schedule a session with an astrologer, a metaphysical advisor or a shaman to assist you in finding your purpose. Or if that’s not appealing look into your past, your childhood and see what inspired you as a child, as an adolescent etc.

If you know your purpose you can choose to surrender to it or allow other interests to direct you. Or let whim tickle you down the road. Whim could be wasting your time, but maybe you will decide that’s okay.

discovering my purpose and surrendering into it.

Just know that when you impulsively click on some thing or other the data miners come along and start developing a profile on you to sell you stuff. Most browsers collect data – Chrome being notorious for it. Apple announced it would not be data mining on its last major re-boot of its Safari browser.

I’m not anywhere close to an expert on this subject. Check out Wired Magazine for more info on this subject and possible Mozilla Foundation whose makes the Firefox browser.

When I was younger I was on fire to find “the Truth” and this evolved into finding “my truth” which lead to discovering my purpose and surrendering into it. I worked hard and surrendered into spaces of grace where I was blessed by the divine.

When people write about the divine or God or the Creator they separate this force or urge from themselves. My experience of the divine is a force that transcends ego and yet is inseparable from me, from my being. But as soon as I try to claim it – the “I”   – my ego destroys that lightness of being that connects me from the higher expression of myself.

My most favorite non-fiction book of all time – about creativity, play and boundless possibilities transcending small minded greediness is James Carse’s Finite and Infinite Games.

Here in PDF:



Building Human Reality

Lightheadthe author with an illusion of light – what is the illusion?


Elon Musk was interviewed recently and reported great odds (in the billions) that we are in a computer generated reality. This implies an AI being controlled outside the scope of humans or previously more advanced humans from an ancient civilization. While possible there is another more insidious programming that already exists within human beings themselves.

We exist inside a virtual reality due to how our human limitations perceive what we call reality. Our perceptual facilities, our genetic code, our mammalian / biological nature in juxtaposition with: the biosphere, civilization, society, Planet Earth, the Solar System, the Milky Way galaxy, the multiverse factor in how we perceive / project reality.

Language is the means that we symbolize reality.

Humans have built reality and we are slaves to it. Very few have escaped slavery to become free.

The film “The Matrix” arose from a more insidious reality that we have already created – not built by AI but by the nature of humans as addictive beings who project their reality onto a wider world and then live within the narrow confines of the world that they have created. It’s easier to think that an advance AI created a simulated reality because this idea is yet another way to release us for our responsibilities to work to free ourselves from the slavery we have created. The forces of addiction and /or attachment are the elements or glue that hold the reality together and prevent slavery from being seen – so in short we believe we are free when we are enslaved.


Some basics of a finite system

When language was first developed ego began. Language is a structure of communication and processing thought into concepts. Language is the means that we symbolize reality. Symbolizing reality in this way is so entrenched in our lives we forget that it is a technology that defines and enslaves us within its linear time constraints. It is a seamless technology. Language defines and constrains who we are in some ways and liberates us in other ways but within its system of rules. Language separates us through subject and object connected through verbs and modifiers. Language defines us gives us identity and separates us from “me” and “not-me” concepts.

Humans seek to complete themselves, which is impossible under the finite rules of linear perception.

Ego and language are inseparable. Ego is identity in a group-based matrix or community / society / civilization. Ego and language make life possible, as we know it. Ego is the manager of linear time; it dictates what we do, how we do it, when we do it and what it means to us. Ego and language make curiosity possible. Sentences have a beginning, middle and end and are action-movies, they are motion driven along linear time.

I walked across the room.

“I” is the subject, “walked” the verb – past tense, “across” the preposition indicating location “the” definite article – making special the noun that follows it, “room” noun and object of the sentence. The sentence indicated that the action took place in the past along a linear time line.

If we were to form a sentence to satisfy the wholeness of our entire being there would no longer be a need to make more sentences. One of the reasons we create more sentences is to find completion. This is one of the bases of curiosity and creativity. However, language, ego and linear time are closed systems and human beings are open systems living with complex closed systems. Humans seek to complete themselves, which is impossible under the finite rules of linear perception.

Linear perception is grounded in many rules. Human perceptual faculties assist in supporting, defining and honing the rules that support slavery to the finite system. The finite system is invisible because we believe that we have free will. One reason for this belief is the life we live within this closed system. Open beings inside a closed system will always create illusions in order to believe that they are free. From the point of view of the closed system free will is a possibility, but a quick examination of our lives reveal many truths including how free will as we currently think of it is an illusion.


Actions, habits beliefs – the family

Setting societal class and money systems aside, we believe we live free of history, both personal, familial, racially, ethnically and nationally. So when we make a choice we assume it’s free because we are unaware of the underpinnings of that choice.

Family teaches children. Children inevitable learn “do as I say, not as I do,” from parents. We unconsciously adopt beliefs from our parents including behaviors that contradict those beliefs. Even when we rebel against a belief of our parents we are still bound by emotional glue to a reaction response, which holds us in a dyad of prescribed behavior. We learn from our parents who learned from their parents and so on throughout history.

My father rebelled against “the government” because he transposed his rebellion against his father to a entity that couldn’t thrash him directly. It was safer to rebel against something so big and impersonal as the government. I rebelled against my Father directly – against the war in Vietnam and he thrashed me. I rebelled against the republican and conservative philosophies as a way of rebelling against my father. Having “seen” these beliefs in my father and the emotional underpinnings of his behaviors I have forgiven him for his violence and manipulation against me. However I am still a slave to this behavior on some levels. Working on it.

We hold conflicting beliefs.

How we respond to romantic partners is shaped by our relationship to our opposite sexed or dominant parent and how we perceived the behavioral and emotional interactions with their partners. Part of our attraction to romantic partners is a desire to feel the familiar – how we felt in our families. Its what we know. When we become aware of this dynamic we may try to fix/heal our family of origin and /or our primary relationship as a way of resolving our relationship with our opposite sex partner or dominant partner and our mother or father. Or divorce and start again with the same or a different facet of the same person. Or we learn to live with our partner that represents something healthier.

We assume that the predominant personality presenting itself in the now is master of our world. The extreme of the Dissociative Identity Disorder (formerly Multiple Personality Disorder) is on a continuum between the highly dysfunctional to a function acceptability of differs selves within us. There is no Master but an array of different selves that rise up from the sub or unconscious sea with us. For instance I might say I have decided to lose weight by cutting out sweets. Hours later I see a fudge chocolate cookie that I eat without a second thought. Who was it that ate that cookie in me? A whimsical impulse driven child perhaps? It certainly wasn’t the decider that chose hours before to stop eating sweets.

We hold conflicting beliefs. We may have high ethical beliefs but we may not follow them. A friend did a statistical study of 6th graders. She found that most all of the students had many altruistic beliefs but did not follow them depending on a number of factors.

Capitalism requires an increasing division of things and services and a consumer base to fuel the engine of this system. Media including the sensory input of all that is visual and auditory drives to capture and excite the whim in us with the pull of associative memory to capture our attention.



[I’m intentionally ignoring most of the traditional and invisible perceptual facilities that we utilize in navigating the world for investigation later.]

 Attention is the first building block of consciousness. An understanding three stances of attention is a useful tool in the quest to see beyond the projected reality we as humans have created.

First the rudimentary aspects of attention via The Merriam-Webster Dictionary definition of attention:

1. a : the act or state of applying the mind to something Our attention was on the game. You should pay attention to what she says.
b : a condition of readiness for such attention involving especially a selective narrowing or focusing of consciousness and receptivity Students, do I have your attention?

  1.  : observation, notice; especially : consideration with a view to action a problem requiring prompt attention

all thinking is associative

 In the definition above is an implicit meaning of the focusing of attention from a subject to an object. Attention in linear time is associated with focus, a narrowing bandwidth in which to concentrate consciousness in an active and receptive fashion. When attention is focused it means to put aside extraneous associative thinking and concentration vision and auditory facilities on a point. Another facet of attention is the dualistic notion of the origin of attention – a person focusing and the object that the person is focusing on.

Humanity is caught in a dualistic dilemma, which limits thought to a binary sequence of on/off, either/or, right/wrong and so on. This is the dilemma of the pattern of all thinking. In short all thinking is associative. One though is associated with another. A human cannot hold two thoughts in consciousness at the same time. We can switch rapidly between two thoughts giving the illusion of multi-tasking. Many studies have debunked multitasking as a skill and show it as a way of shattering attention making the work less efficient.

Due to how we think as humans association naturally leads to dualistic thinking even though we all know that problems are more complex than black or white. Underneath the surface of associative thinking is a process that though fleeting at first can offer an in-between place between dualistic and /or associative thinking. This is a neutral place.

we are already enslaved by the history of beliefs, by the limits of perception, by habit that runs into a seamless unconscious flow

Before exploring the neutral place there are three centers of neuronal activity in the human body. The first is our top brain – the cerebral cortex, the second is the heart brain and the third is the gut brain. So far the discussion has involved only the cerebral cortex. [Aside: the other two brain impulses are always interpreted through the cerebral cortex.]

The Heart Brain is the seat of emotional impressions and regulates the heart muscle. The Gut Brain – or in Chinese Medicine – the Chi regulated the moving center or the Corporeal Body’s Brain as well as assimilation of nutrients and elimination of waste.

Expanding attention in a world that seeks to erode it is an increasingly difficult

Perhaps the neutral place was once a known intrinsic function of ancient humans before written history. Now it must be cultivated. The basis of its cultivation begins with the body and body knowing as the grounding of neutrality. Once neutrality has been noticed if only for fleeting moments then the fulcrum between duality begins to come into play. Attention begins to expand into higher forms. Attention is stretched as to allow more information to be processed especially when neutrality is cultivated.


Pushing Attention

As humans we are succumbing to sensory overload through the devices that stream technology and as a result our attention span is diminishing. Socio-economic forces fueled by power-possessors seeking to increasingly divide our attention and enslave us. And we are already enslaved by the history of beliefs, by the limits of perception, by habit that runs into a seamless unconscious flow. Room for play and creativity is nearly non-existent amongst children.

push the limits of reality

Expanding attention in a world that seeks to erode it is an increasingly difficult and unpopular task. Invariably during my work with clients trance-work is called for as a way of “seeing” the currents of habit that run below the surface of consciousness. Trance work requires dividing attention between what is being said and the flow underneath the speech. To effectively listen to their story and maintain a light trance state for receptively receiving impressions is made possible through the fulcrum of the neutral place. The trance state reveals an interdimensional reality that is at once separate and blended with the reality that we recognize.

Experimenting with lengthening attention and using attention in active / receptive and neutral ways then we can begin to push against the limits of how we project reality and become enslaved by it. The first step in solving a problem is recognizing that there is one.

We often equate perceptual attention with the visual. Our attention is drawn to something. The amount of visual stimuli that we allow ourselves to be subjected to is overwhelming. Here is a simple experiment in visual attention:

  1. Sit in a chair in a lit room and pick a point to look at opposite to where you are sitting.
  2. While looking at the point and not moving your eyes from that point pay attention to what is in your peripheral visual field, noting what is there.
  3. If you’ve moved your eyes from focusing on the point you have failed the exercise and start again.
  4. After a minute to five minutes stop. Close your eyes and recall what was in your periphery field. Now look at the area surrounding the point. Did you catch all the items that you noticed in the field?

This is an example of utilizing receptive sensory awareness and expanding attention to push the limits of reality. It’s a very mild push and it’s a beginning.

The use of trance, selective listening and the neutral point can be another tool in extending attention and awareness to places beyond ordinary reality.

The person begins speaking as I am prompted to drop-down into trance. I pop back and forth between worlds. Listening is half-listening and at times full listening. The trance state allows for a deeper level of receptive listening that gleans information and provides texture for the story that the client is weaving.

 After years of cultivating the neutral place within switching back and forth between worlds is easier and is one step closer to breaking free of the slavery which keeps me in an enslaved place. However I run on automatic just as many others do so I am still a slave to my habits and beliefs.


Acknowledging Perceptual Filters

The following five categories except number 1 may not represent all the perceptual facilities / filters that we as humans work with.

The obvious perceptions:

  1. Sight
  2. Sound,
  3. Touch,
  4. Taste
  5. Odor
  6. Balance
  7. Movement / Direction

The ignored perceptual facilities:

  1. Associative thought
  2. Perceiving emotion
  3. Memory (personal, familial, societal and their histories)
  4. Familial meta-rules
  5. Societal meta-rules


III. Unconscious biological perceptual facilities:

  1. Genetic interaction with the world based on familial and personal patterns
  2. Somatic knowing


IV. Underdeveloped perceptual facilities:

  1. Empathic perception
  2. Telepathic perception
  3. Transcending Linear Time


V. Transcendent perceptual facilities:

  1. Inter and trans dimensional perception
  2. Perception of invisible worlds
  3. Conscious bi-location
  4. Recognizing and transcending layers of illusion


All of these perceptual filters except number 5 are agreements that shape the projection we call reality. I believe that part of our mission as humans on planet earth is breaking through the illusions of the projection while transmuting suffering into energy or light / consciousness so that we make work to evolve into a higher consciousness state. Usually those that have completed this process are free to release the corporeal human state and live in the next stage of consciousness. Some do return to the projected human reality as Bodhisattvas to assist others in recognizing the illusion that we all create and help them with its release.








Negative Emotions – Part Two of two


What are the functions of emotions?

Are there positive and negative emotions?

Perhaps emotions are neither positive nor negative they just exist and society attaches value to them. As was written in Part One negative emotions may be negative because they are expressed negatively or a value / judgment is placed from outside or inside our selves. Certainly so-called negative emotions may be experienced as unpleasant especially when they are acted out instead of merely expressed without the drama.

All human thought is associative and only varies based on associative thinking. We think by associating one idea with another. A good example that illustrates this is thinking about at trip say by automobile. One cannot think of the entire trip at once.

Challenge: “Yes I can through looking at a map.”

Answer:     “Maps are representations of a trip not the trip itself

We think of the steps of a trip. Drive down the road. Turn right down Highway 12. Turn left at the light. These are steps; one associated with the next. Even deductive or inductive logic are formal ways of organizing associative thinking.

Associative thinking is an easy way to characterize emotions as negative and positive or pleasant and unpleasant because this kind of cognitive mapping is hardwired into our neuronal structure. In psychological theory we look to feel a sense of pleasure or satisfaction and avoid, suppress, repress and/or deny any emotion that interferes with this pleasure.

The “new age” thinking associates ego with negativity and the expression of the divine self with a positive non-attached bliss and enlightenment. Even when we are able to release the ego and feel the bliss of oneness this feeling lasts briefly because as we think or say “I” ego rushes back in and claims the experience. There is nothing wrong with ego claiming the experience of oneness – one of the ways of attachment. The danger is the development of an illusion that one is in a constant state of the divine self when it is merely ego claiming the experience. The illusion is so thick that many “new age” thinkers develop a false personality of divinity and make assumptions. This kind of illusion helps support the duality of thought (through association) eliminates complexity and allows a simple view to assist in keeping us stuck in an illusion of living in bliss, oneness and enlightenment. This factor is one of many that robs us of the path to mastery. In other words the “new age” philosophy makes ego bad and oneness good – it’s not that simple.

In Buddhism we learn that one of the chief attributes of being human is attachment. Emotions are the fuel for attachment. Many who first contact the Buddhist Philosophy may think that attachment can be overcome once and for all. This is not true except when enlightenment is attained (however there are two caveats that belie this assertion). Those that are enlightened retain their personalities / egos which continue to be subject to attachment. As we dwell within our physical bodies a natural attachment develops for it as a vehicle for our survival and as a part of our egos. Attachment is with us until our body dies and could continue into the afterlife. Attachment is a positive factor in our lives when it is utilized in creating increasingly higher states of consciousness.

Attachment is a biological and egoic process within us. It feels good in a sensorial manner.

Attachment can be seen on a continuum:

Figure 1 – Process of Un-examined Attachment


Figure 2 – Process of Working with Attachment

attachrange-copy[Aside: in psychological theory Attachment takes on a different connotation – one where an infant bonds with its parents through love.]

As a child develops it models the behaviors of its parents and learns language. Language is the inseparable tech of ego. A child learns language and develops the “me” and “not-me” sense of self and ego is born. Ego grows and learns through attachments and identifications. It is in this way that ego fixes an identity in its social milieu. All of us have egos. As soon as we think or say “I” ego is in play. Attachment is the action of establishing, maintaining and growing the ego.

Attachment can occur through like and dislike. The child likes to play. Attachment to liking something is understandable. The child dislikes when its parents argue. An attachment to dislike is counter-intuitive. The attachment to the dislike is not apparent because the attachment comes with regard to the behaviors and subsequent emotions with those behaviors. The child runs and hides when parents argue – fear, or get angry and acts out, or pretends argument is not there avoidant etc.

Emotion is the major fuel of attachment. As ego develops and grows it desires to attain more experiences. They it can let go and become one with the other in a brief moment. This could be an act of love or a oneness with the multiverse. However what invariably happens once ego is released in the moment it comes rushing back in in the next moment claiming and reveling in the experience of oneness in a desire to claim it, define it and understand it from an ego perspective. Attachment from the Buddhist perspective says that the emotions that fuel attachment come from a pursuit of happiness that is believed to exist outside the ego and thus must be attained. This pursuit is tied into the whims of ego and language (as tech) that supports the pursuit along a linear time line. True happiness is already within and need not be pursued. Thus it is said that we are already enlightened and are peeling away the layers of illusion that allow us to realize that state and keep ego corralled.

The path of mastery is a taming of ego from within. This is a Herculean endeavor. Part of the journey is developing the witness within. From this inner place it is possible to begin to work with our attachment via emotions.

Negative emotions are ineffectively expressed and are seen as undesired. Often times the expression of anger, anxiety, panic, rage, fear, and loathing etc. are expressed in a maladaptive manner that reflects regressive or childish expressions of these emotions. They have been modeled by our parents and their grandparents and so on and have been inoculated into our thinking as “negative emotions”.

Some positive emotions produce satisfaction, happiness and bliss, amongst many more. Often others want to be near us when we exhibit positive emotions. Positive emotions are almost always wanted to the exclusion, denial and/or suppression-repression of the negative ones.

Transforming Emotions and Attachments into the Energies of Consciousness

 The problems of ego, the limitations of linear time and language and associative thinking contribute to the either/or dialectic in thought and deed that have been troublesome.

Associative thinking quiet naturally leads us into black and white thinking: positive and negative emotions, ego is bad, divine self is good etc. We have made the assumption that only two forces make the universe work: positive energy and negative energy. In the atom there are electrons – negatively charged particles or waves and protons – positively charged particles or waves and there are neutrons –particles that have no charge.

Inner or Spiritual Work relies on the Witness or Neutral Observer. In Quantum Physics the observer sees the effects of what is observed, and this was once thought to be impossible because experimenters thought they were separate from experiments. Transposing this kind of thinking to neutrally and compassionately observing our self. This allows us to build a relationship with our self that is neutral and thus allows judgment to dissipate so that we can dispassionately see ourselves without the filters of illusion. By focusing within and systematically releasing our thoughts on a continual basis attachment, freedom from attachment, abiding happiness and enlightenment become apparent.

When we face unwanted (or so-called “negative emotions”) without judgment from the compassionate witness self energy is created. This energy is usually blown off through talking or it can be stored for future work towards mastery and the evolution of cosmic consciousness.


4-magicThe duck pond on the Sonoma Plaza 🙂


On an early Sunday morning in February of 1983 my best friend Kent and I went to Sonoma and the Valley of the Moon.

I had moved to the Stockton area in 1982 to live and work with Bhante – the Dharmawara Mahathera and learn Vipassana Meditation in greater depth. However I rebelled against being a devotee – something he had wanted (not me) and moved out.

Hanging out at the Blackwater Café in Stockton I came to know Kent. We became good friends. He introduced me to the magic of Sonoma.

His introduction was replete with great wisdom and insight.

I am eternally grateful to him for opening the door to my home.

We left around 6 am in the dusk of a cold morning on that February. He drove his van with his dog and me across the delta towards Sonoma. He had a knack for introducing me to the magic of Sonoma and the Valley of the Moon with his mythic-poetic musings peppered into our conversations.

We missed Bill at perform with his guitar at the church. We met Bill and his wife Shirley at the First Congregational Church on West Spain Street in Sonoma at the tail end of the 7 am Service. Then Kent drove us to their cabin near the top of Moon Mountain Drive in Sonoma. We ate brunch and talked.

My third eye opened wide upon entry into the Sonoma Valley.

Kent and I took a short walk on the fire trail to the south of their house and he waxed on about castles in Europe appearing out of the fog – such as the fog in the valley.

Something quite unexpected had happened that day. I digress – that for the past 18 months I had been doing an inner exercise – a meditation in the morning to create light for the “soul’s body” and open the 3rd eye. My third eye opened wide upon entry into the Sonoma Valley.

I felt the town welcomed me, just as Mount Diablo “spoke” to me about becoming a healer. Of course the impressions didn’t come in English but I translated them into language for a better understanding. At first I explained the opening of my Third Eye by all the spiritual work that was done by others in the valley.

Many years after another answer came to me in a softer manner. It was the land herself, the configuration of the Valley of the Moon and the power center (the Plaza) of Sonoma Valley that has been a source of mystery and powerful transformation. I believe the way in which Kent introduced me to Sonoma and the Valley was replete with great wisdom and insight. I am eternally grateful to him for opening the door to my home.

Towards the end of this Field of Dreams film clip Burt Lancaster’s character Doc Graham makes a powerful statement about “home”. This is how it is for me in Sonoma.


PS I give workshops/individual sessions in some of the magical places in Sonoma http://the-kai.com


Empathic Protection

Originally published May 21, 2015 and updated June 3, 2017


Most children are empaths. Many people are empaths and sometimes this is a matter of degree. If we begin to think as the empathic ability as a continuum then sometimes people are highly empathic – highly sensitive and sometimes less empathic perhaps due to circumstance and/or better boundaries. However in every social group there may be one or more empaths that may function as checks for both conscious and unconscious emotional patterns within a particular group.

A client who was an empath asked me how she could keep out “bad energy” or “negative feelings”. How could she protect herself? This is a good question. No one who is an empath stays in a feeling place all the time. We go into our intellect as a way of protecting ourselves from the suffering of the world and from our own suffering.

Emotion is analogous to flowing water.

No one can stay in the heart one hundred percent of the time without breaking down. The best parts of ego allow us to balance emotions with the intellect. It is possible for an empath, stuck in fear for example, to begin to rationalize judge and exclude others shifting themselves from the heart into the mind and using the intellect as a fortress against emotions. A person overwhelmed with emotion could be fearful, defensive and react in anger if they are unaware of the empathic abilities. Other empaths may seem to attract nothing but negative energy from others (see Shadowcatchers below) and this may originate from being scapegoated as a child and accepting the role as an adult. Balancing mind and emotions requires attention and the use of thinking to identify emotions in others and our selves. Once we engage the mind to identify emotions we can develop a plan of action to help us cope with others’ feelings (see example below).

Most people who are empathic sponges would like to keep bad stuff out and let only the good stuff in, that’s only natural.


The best defense for empaths is flow.


Let it flow through you. A metaphor for flow of emotions is a fast flowing stream, waterfall or river. Emotion is the empaths currency. Emotion appears, we sometimes process it and then it goes. Empaths ability to feel others’ emotions and identify these emotions can be developed into a skill and can trigger responses in empaths that remind us of woundings from the past. As soon as you realize you are triggered remind yourself that you wouldn’t be able to recognize the trigger unless you were ready to deal with it.

If the empath can answer these questions when feeling others’ emotions then protection becomes simplified somewhat:

  1. Does this feeling I’m feeling belong to me? (Does it originate with me?)
  2. If YES, decide whether to deal with it in current time or postpone it until you can deal with it.
  3. If NO, then either let it flow through you quickly and ground it down into Molten Core of Earth, or offer it to be burnt up in the sun, or create a column of light to the left or right of you and put the emotion or set of emotions in the column of light.
  4. If MAYBE, it’s likely that the emotions that you’re feeling are similar emotions than the persons or persons producing them and you have lessons to learn here or you feel triggered. Ask that Spirit separate your feelings from the others and then deal with the feelings from the others as you would in #3 and /or in #1.

Many times the four-question method above may not be possible. When we encounter others’ emotions we may be overwhelmed with their emotions. Their emotions may trigger similar emotions in us. Part of our abilities as empaths is recognizing the common threads of emotion that bond humans together. Two common emotions that humans feel are grief and love. Feeling love in another or in others feels good. Feeling grief can be problematic. Part of the problem is that grief can spawn feelings such as sadness, anger / rage and these can turn into depression sometimes. Recognizing when you are triggered and dealing with the trigger is a first step at diffusing overwhelming emotions.

There can be two kinds of empaths for the purposes of this piece.[1] If you are reading this and feel you are an empath then you are on the path of a Conscious Empath. However there are unconscious empaths. These people become overwhelmed without knowing the reasons and sometimes blame others or become depressed. Their childhood traumas may be so complicated and their self-images so solid with walls instead of boundaries that their empathic abilities overwhelm them and prevent them from seeing triggers. They cannot process the overwhelming emotional onslaught without help. Usually some of these people feel they don’t need help.

You may also be a Shadowcatcher.

You may be a magnet for others shadows. Shadowcatchers may be absorbers of others unconscious projections. Essentially a shadowcatcher feels the shadow of another or shadows from groups. I noticed this when I was a participant in a healing circle. The facilitator asked for loving and healing energies from the group through coming forward – for a laying-on of hands or from our spot in the circle. Immediately I felt a surge of resentment and anger that was overwhelming. It happened many times until I realized what I was feelings was not coming from me. And as soon as I grounded it out I felt the love and was able to participate in the healing circle.

Sensitive people always attract less sensitive people to them especially if one or both parties are not conscious of their sensitivities. In psychology this is called Projective Identification.[2] Our culture often brands sensitive people as “weak” when in fact the opposite is true. I grew up in a stiff upper-lip Yankee family where tears were rarely shed. My Mother would shame me for my tearful behaviors by saying – “You’re too sensitive.” Often it was she who was projecting feelings onto me that I could express and then she would shame me for having done so because she did not want to acknowledge the feelings in herself. When sensitive people become aware of their sensitivities and can name their feelings and take responsibility for them with “I feel” statements then merely on the psychological basis feelings can be owned and the blame/shame game can be reduced.

If you are an empath that becomes infected with the shadows of others and these shadows blend with your emotions, then problems can become severely compounded. As a child and survivor of ritual sexual abuse that had been repressed I was severely depressed and passively suicidal for all of my teen years. When the memories of abuse began surfacing in my 40s I was able to begin to deal with the feelings and slowly work through the most arduous territories of the abuse. Every person on the planet has grown-up in a dysfunctional family to one degree or another. If you played the role of an empath in your family and that particular family was highly dysfunctional and negative then its likely that you may be carrying your family shadow and are acting out what had been passed on to you. There are three paths of approach that may help with your healing:


  • A daily spiritual practice that includes working on developing a non-judgmental and compassionate observed of your behaviors, thoughts and emotions (feelings)
  • Therapy
  • A visit to a healer to assist in removing possible ancestral beings stuck in your electromagnetic field.


I have been engaged in a daily spiritual practice for over 40 years and more intensely during the flashbacks of the abuse.



[1] The range of empathic abilities: https://lonerwolf.com/what-type-of-empath-are-you/



[2] Shadowcatchers in psychological terms: http://drs-oleary.com/Projective_Identification.htm


“Why Traps” – an Affirming Present or a Future Expectation of Negative Outcomes

brain_f2 Psychoanalysis uncovers the genesis of a problem or problems rooted in the unconscious and when understood by the conscious mind there is an occurrence of healing. This is a vast oversimplification and it belongs to a world of mechanistic cause and effect relationships with an assumption that the mind unlocks healing.

Our brains are hardwired for fear and possible negative outcomes.

This myth is perpetuated into logical thought and the some of shortcomings of the scientific method. In other words psychoanalysis has perpetuated an assumption that thought and the will can overcome unconscious traumas of childhood. That would be true if everyone lived in a cause and effect world.

Fears and anxieties based on an expectation of a negative outcome is an urge some people to begin to try and think how to escape the negative outcome. This in-turn encourages more thinking to solve the problem. This is the cycle of worry or obsessive thinking. The pattern of this kind of thinking may soothe the thinker for a nanosecond but then initiates the obsessive pattern again. The worrier doesn’t use fear to attract the negative outcome to themselves but allows them to find situations were the negative pattern manifests. [People come to me and ask about romantic relationships they inevitably say they feel in-love for the person because it feels “right” and “familiar”. The root word of “familiar” is family. After a few dates I suggest some questions. If the person asking me is a woman talking about a man, I ask the woman about her relationship with her father. I suggest that the woman ask the man about his relationship with his mother. You get the idea.] The family we were raised in represented a particular world. Some offspring leave the world of the dysfunction – often cause and effect relationships for a world in the present and they may slip back into the cause and effect world when encountering a parent or two or siblings. The function of expectation for a negative outcome is key and this is often an unconscious process.

When we humans feel joy and happiness expectation falls away.

Our brains are hardwired for fear and possible negative outcomes. This took place over a long period of time probably tens of thousand of years and was based in survival against real danger, such as being attacked and eaten by predators. Eventually the patterns that helped our ancestors cope with dangers were substituted with fears based on anxieties about our negative expectations of a future based on a causal world.


When we humans feel joy and happiness expectation falls away. These are emotions that expand and uplift and belong to a different reality than the expectations of negative outcomes and how to solve them. Expectations of negative outcomes and its solution – obsessional thinking curl us into self-protective loops that create conditions for suffering and breakdowns. Joy and happiness belong to a separate reality divorced from expectation and in the world of the present.

This takes a compassionate neutral place within our Being.

I had a friend that would ask me “Why?” to whatever subject she was grappling with at the time. I would answer that “Why?” questions assume that if one knew the reason for this or that problem then there would be a self-evident solution. “Why” questions belong to the cause and effect world of psychoanalysis. Cause and effect worlds are less complex and predictable. The Higher Worlds predicated in the present are more complex because the emotions of joy, happiness and love open us and make “Why” questions superfluous. The intellect and rational thought is not the answer to everything.

Overcoming worry and causal realities takes time and effort. Awareness is the first step. Awareness must be free of judgment. The spin of worry / obsessional thinking must be observed without judgment. This takes a compassionate neutral place within our Being. This place requires cultivation. Once the force of a witness is sufficiently cultivated we become aware when we are obsessing and have an expectation for a negative outcome.


A conscious breath may be enough to interrupt the pattern for a second. The use of distraction, moving out pattern of thinking to feelings of hope and joy may help us shift out of the pattern. Repeated efforts along these lines are necessary throughout our lives because of the hard-wiring of our brain explained above. For a better habit to replace a bad habit- especially one that is hardwired into our brains must be continually practiced.

I have noticed that breakthroughs into other worlds and even into a “place” beyond time are possible.



Occasionally I think about the arc of my life as a rainbow of possibilities replete with connections, connections of the heart to friends, relatives and lovers… Tonight I feel filled with love, blessed to live in community. I feel incredibly wealthy and blessed. Thank-you.

The community in Sonoma and in the world for all that I have touched and whose hearts have touched mine. The connections through the WordPress blogs, Facebook and Medium to name a few are also heartfelt. I am deeply grateful and honored.When I dip into the breath and down into meditation the web and weave of a greater consciousness seems to open. In that opening I have glimpsed destiny based on synchronicities, karma, perception and the oneness of the heart. It is as if my life has been written as I surrender into a higher consciousness letting go of ego for those briefest of moments.
In 1990 when I asked the question – “God what should I do with my life?” and the subsequent “answer” that led to a place of choice. I could have continued to pursue what “I” (ego) wanted to do – make video, write unsuccessful screenplays and continue to work as a Crisis Counselor or…

I could surrender to a life as a “seer” and healer. So I surrendered. However that initial act of surrender wasn’t the only one. My rebellious and bratty ego keeps making himself known and this requires continual acts of surrender to the path.

I wish I could adequately describe the feelings of sweetness connected to the act of surrender. However the 1990 act of surrender wasn’t my first. My ego remembers all the seemingly magical acts of surrender, and there were many that were failed or seemed not to produce any obvious results.
To arrive at a place in ourselves where surrender is possible other avenues of work are required to generate the energy of beingness necessary for the sacrifice in the surrender process.
Avenues of work on oneself:
Struggle: Most people have an onerous association to struggle and avoid it. Most of our struggles are successful and easy. Getting out of bed in the morning, or driving to work etc. Paying taxes may be a task we put off – so that may be an odious struggle.

Struggle is the battle between “Yes” and “No”. The cultivation of the Witness observer self helps in two ways: it allows non-attachment to develop and the observer / witness can create energy from the friction of the struggle.
Help: Most people ask for help much as a child would ask an adult for help in the same way people ask for help from God, the Divine, the Universe etc. Many people expect help will arrive because they asked and that the help will arrive in a clearly recognizable way. Help can come when we make space for it and are attentive to the ways in which it can arrive and how we respond to it.
Learning: Learning can come from books. Deeper learning comes from direct contact with a Master and /or teacher.
Surrender or Sacrifice: This can only happen in the present moment. It involves a surrender of thought, feeling and motion (somatic knowing). It involves letting go of expectation and fears. When ego is released the Witness or Observer self may be present.
In 1982 will participating with 50 or so individuals in a practice of a Gurdjieff Sacred Dance – The Great Prayer, during the last twenty minutes I experienced a divine presence “doing” the movement while my Witness Self observed. This was an ineffable experience where to use words to describe it would denigrate it.

A Radical Theory of Consciousness


Consciousness from a Scientific Perspective

What is consciousness and from whence does it arise and can we as human even write about this without becoming befuddled? We, as humans, have a modicum of consciousness, so to write about consciousness is problematic much the same as defining a word using the word we are defining in its definition.

Most neuroscientists seek to find the arising of consciousness in a brain, mainly the human brain, although others admit consciousness could arise from a bee’s brain amongst many others, for example.

Wikipedia defines consciousness:

Consciousness is the state or quality of awareness, or, of being aware of an external object or something within oneself.[1][2] It has been defined variously in terms of sentience, awareness, subjectivity, the ability to experience or to feelwakefulness, having a sense of selfhood or soul, the fact that there is something “that it is like” to “have” or “be” it, and the executive control system of the mind,[3] or the state or quality of awareness, or, of being aware of an external object or something within oneself.[1][2] In contemporary philosophy its definition is often hinted at via the logical possibility of its absence, the philosophical zombie, which is defined as a being whose behavior and function are identical to one’s own yet there is “no-one in there” experiencing it.

Despite the difficulty in definition, many philosophers believe that there is a broadly shared underlying intuition about what consciousness is.[4] As Max Velmans and Susan Schneider wrote in The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness: “Anything that we are aware of at a given moment forms part of our consciousness, making conscious experience at once the most familiar and most mysterious aspect of our lives.”[5]

Neuroscience is reductionistic in the sense of “looking for” a seat of consciousness. Problems continue to arise with the neuroscientist as observer of consciousness. Or what is outside of consciousness? This subject object relationship becomes increasing difficult and problematic in the reductionistic nature of science.

Most theories of consciousness divide it into levels while neuroscience looks to the “seat” of consciousness. All the theories are generated from reductionistic principles.

Cosmic or transcendental consciousness as in enlightenment is consciousness and may be the least reductionistic. Though explaining Comic Consciousness and the functions of its expression requires some reductionistic thinking / writing.


Thoughts about Consciousness as Cosmic and its Meaning

Even to write that consciousness is Cosmic is to reduce the experience of said consciousness into a reductionistic concept based on the technology of written language and that is a problem. And even though the problem can be overcome it cannot be done within this context.

Cosmic Consciousness fits nicely with Buddhist philosophy especially when one considers that human beings or any being with a brain or neurons or complex life is a receptor or expression of consciousness.

Let’s assume:

  • All consciousness is Cosmic and pervades all.
  • Consciousness is. Consciousness is everywhere and permeates every being (elements such as rock, Earth, air and water are beings as well as all animal and plant life are beings and are receptors of Cosmic Consciousness.
  • Consciousness expresses it self through a variety of beings – human beings have a technology to assist in expressing how Cosmic Consciousness manifests in humans.
  • Enlightenment is the actionable part of Consciousness. Buddhist philosophy states that human beings are enlightened and that only illusion stands in our way of this experience.
  • Death is death of the body not the death of consciousness. Consciousness never dies.
  • Reincarnation is the journey / expression of consciousness through a variety of expressions or points of view
  • Cognitive recognition of the view of the Is-ness of consciousness expressed through a series of individuals to a state of transcendental enlightenment represents the expression of one consciousness across many lives.
  • The expression of Cosmic Consciousness in an individual human is limited by the perceptual faculties of said human
  • Illusion is created at conception when consciousness is conscripted into a set of cells and when the child learns language and delineates oneself from the unity of Cosmic Consciousness through the expression of self and the other.
  • Illusion and the creation of identity are necessary in the play of consciousness.
  • Identity allows for an illusion of separateness to exist. This is necessary to allow a human identity to create energy (light) in its journey into Oneness, the Oneness of Consciousness. The journey itself is also an illusion.
  • A human’s urge is a play between separation from Oneness to create identity and definitions of the self and the urge to be One with All That Is. This can be characterized as a struggle.
  • Struggle is the battle between “Yes” and “No”. Struggle can only be effective when a compassionate neutral witness sees the struggle. The neutral part acts as a valve to store the energy created in the struggle. Struggle without the neutral witness stays in the worlds of illusion.
  • The struggle when recognized as raising one’s consciousness can generate much energy in the form of light. This struggle is capable of overcoming illusion while acknowledging illusion as a motivator of spirit’s contact with matter to create energy to constantly surmount the small self or ego by way of the divinity within.
  • Death may be analogous to sleep, a forgetting…
  • When a singular consciousness has journeyed through many lives they are called old souls. These old souls begin to remember former lives in increasing detail.
  • The oldest of souls remember the life (or lives) after the death of the body.


Take a rest and come back to the material later.


Buddhist, Mayan and Gurdjieffian philosophies are reflected in this piece

A Primer ~ Autogenic Training

EssenceFlameEternalThe best way to learn Autogenic Training is through a teacher, guide or an instructor (an instructor has been practicing AT for many years but has not yet mastered it). AT without a teacher or instructor can be dangerous because of ego’s desire to meddle and build illusion towards self-aggrandizement.

Think of this piece as a teaser or introduction. Then look for a teacher, guide or an instructor.

Autogenic Training begins with self-observation that builds towards the formation of a Witness Self. The Witness is a cultivated dispassionate observer that can be described as “I was beside myself”, allowing us to perceive our selves with clear neutral pictures (perceptions) without judgment or opinion thus allowing divine compassion to enter and a clear picture of all our selves.

Self-observation is difficult to write about because we have no specific language for its description. Beginners often confuse self-observation with ideas, inferences and get distracted by associations which become mind-games. Self-observation requires participation from the mind, awareness of your body sensations, and your emotional state.


Here is an outline for starting:


  • Pick a simple physical activity to observe such as rinsing a dish, putting your key in the ignition and starting your car, opening a door.


  • Begin by relaxing your body.


  • Choose your pinky finger on your non-dominate hand to begin (I’m right handed, so I choose my left hand, my left pinkie finger.)


  • I allow sensation to gather in my pinkie finger by feeling its weight. This may appear as a warmth, tingling, energy running through the pinkie or an awareness of physical sensation there. Go lightly allow this to happen don’t force it to happen.


  • Once the sensation is established allow ten percent of your attention to rest in your pinkie finger while engaging in the simple physical task.


  • Allow yourself to be aware of your physical, emotional and mental state while performing the task in this way.

Share your observations with your teacher, guide or instructor. Always use first person – present tense when sharing you observations (remember “the past” are memories that exist in the present). For example – I notice…

See also – Struggle – It’s Not what You Think: https://psychesweather.wordpress.com/2016/05/09/struggle-its-not-what-you-think/