Tag Archives: games

who’s way

who’s way








“… If the individual can be led to believe he must … see his future as a battening down of all hatches and inner resources, as a boarding up of all his windows of perception, as a shrinking back into a cellar of waiting and bare survival, then he evacuates his position of strength….”



A new company called Bullet Blocker (a subdivision of MJ Safety Solutions) tailors a new generation of Kevlar into everyday clothing.



The hoodie provides slash-resistance for the major arteries in your body – the cartoid, brachial and abdmonial arteries – as well as the upper portion of the femoral arteries, and the jugular vein.  So wearing it will help you survive a knife attack.





One of the fascinating questions someone should ask is about the extent to which modeling and simulation programs have been run for the issues of the evacuation of Florida

I’ve had a long-standing interest in simulation and its application to problems of emergency management; it started in 1973 when, as an ambulance company dispatcher, I said “no” to the fellow who’d asked me to “send everything” to the site of an airplane crash 90 miles away.  Playing tabletop war games depicting the Battle of the Bulge gave me a lucid introduction to time/space movement and logistics.

In the 80’s, while going back to grad school in communications to learn more about what they then called “interactive videodisc”, I wrote my first proposals for a simulation game system to teach the principles of mass casualty incident management and shipped copies to anyone whose name and address I could glean; I’d read about the simulation for armored warfare at an Army base in Texas and got a call from someone at the CIA wondering where I had gained access to that information and precisely what I knew. I gave him the precise citation; the book was on my desk. (I was naive back then, what you might call ‘a turnip who fell off the truck’.) I was challenged by an editor at a national publication in the field of emergency medical services and the “Rescue” article here in pdf format was the result. [insert “Rescue” article]

Some of the people who received that proposal (or its revamped brother) included staffers and elected officials at the White House, at the National League of Cities, at the International Association of Fire Chiefs (whose executive director was a professional colleague of mine), Howard Champion, M.D. (who had appeared at a trauma conference I ran for an society of emergency physicians and whose trauma scale formed the patient scoring engine for my simulation proposal), the Baltimore Shock-Trauma Institute, and others.  

Mrs. Dan Quayle wrote back to say ‘thanks, but FEMA had everything well in hand’.  

Dick Cheney got a copy of the second proposal in which I cautioned that any simulation could be turned on its head and used by people who wanted to conduct evil acts.  He was already waay ahead of me. 

Eventually, a copy was given to a young staffer who’d interned with the Bush 43 White House and who’d won a gig with the Office of Emergency Preparedness at the US Department of Justice. [Perhaps you can answer why the DOJ was interested in the state-of-the-art in national emergency preparedness; they developed extensive data bases for all the software programs then in use. Somehow, BreakAway games got a copy of the proposal and came up with http://www.breakawaygames.com/incident-commander/. That company would not let me play the game, and would not talk to me, despite the fact that their product was a kludge because a critical explanation of the “game engine” was purposefully left out of the proposal. 

Is there a program that can simulate the evacuation of the state of Florida?  They exist for many, many other applications, including large buildings, skyscrapers, etc. [Remember 9/11?] 

Most people can’t afford to escape via plane. Anyone who has been to South Florida in a car, and those can read a map or watch the news, understands that the highway net out of South Florida is severely limited and that, being a peninsula, there is not a lot of space for lateral movement. Irma and Harvey, as was Katrina before it, can be seen as an attack on people at the poverty line, which has a racial and perhaps even a eugenics aura.  The meme about their being too many people survives, and many of the elite are known Malthusian eugenicists. 

Let us not forget Hurricane Pam, the sophisticated computerized simulation of a category V Hurricane hitting New Orleans

“… “Madhu Beriwal equates disaster planning with marathon running. ‘You train and time yourself and figure out what you need to do to achieve it,’ she says. As the president of Innovative Emergency Management, Inc., in Baton Rouge, La., Beriwal knows about training for marathon-size catastrophes like Hurricane Katrina. Her company played a role in the Hurricane Pam simulation, which involved almost 300 officials getting ready for a major-category storm hitting New Orleans…..The report produced following “Hurricane Pam” was “designed to be the first step toward producing a comprehensive hurricane response plan, jointly approved and implemented by federal, state and city officials,” the Associated Press reported September 9, 2005. “But a lack of funding prohibited planners from quickly following up on the 2004 simulation. … ‘Money was not available to do the follow-up’,” then FEMA director Michael D. Brown said…..” 

So when Irma was approaching the Leeward Islands, those who could have gotten out should have left then.  Much has been said about the conversation between “government” and the people about evacuation.  Evacuation won’t work unless you left a day or two before you should have.  

Emergency preparedness information has been widely circulated by many; government agencies, preppers, et al.  I wrote of this recently and followed my own advice; my wife and I discussed the issues in our household, talked about the most likely kinds of events or incidents we’d encounter, read two solid but basic articles on the topic of evacuation, and came up with a plan.  We know where we’ll go, who we will meet when we get there, what resources are already at that location (including the all-important physical vitalities, as well as the mental capacities for configuring, engineering, problem-solving, etc.), and are busy configuring the rest of the plan.

That plan will include: 1) pharmaceuticals, medical data, first aid and trauma care; 2) pet care; 3) the laptop computer and cell phones; 4) a bag filled with chargers, and the hand-cranked SW and weather radio with which devices can be charged;  5) a three-ring binder with our life’s info, phone numbers, account numbers, etc., in a lock box, and as much cash as we can gather; 6) luggage with three changes of clothes, plus two-season, two-thickness outerwear, and secure and sturdy footwear.

Everyone should have done some thinking and communication and had a family discussion about those issues by now, had a packed bag or “go kit”, and know enough to go out and fill the gas tank and buy the water when the hurricane starts gaining strength in the Atlantic.  

Florida apparently did not have a simulation on evacuation [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evacuation_process_simulation ], this despite the fact that the US government, through its Department of Defense, had an active interest in simulation since as early as 1978, when flight simulation was developed at the Human Resources Laboratory at the Williams Air Force Base in Arizona.  [This and further references, in addiiton to the links present,  come from pages 253-258, 264-266, 269, 274, 315, 368-372, 375, 387, 398 and 451 of Annie Jacobsen’s book “the Pentagon’s Brain: An Uncensored History of DARPA, America’s Top-Secret Military Research Agency”.] 

The brain behind the further development of this unique tool served as Chairman of DARPA’s Information Science and Technology advisory group.  He envisioned “a three-dimensional, holographic, electronic sand table”; for some reason, he did not include the dimension of time. He envisoned “real-time dress rehearsals”, during which people could train in groups with the immediacy of real-time outcomes without severe consequences (the only wounds would be those to senior command ego).  Said Colonel Jack Thorpe, such a system would allow the practice and learning of things you could not encounter, and in conditions you could not encounter, until you were faced with the reality of an extra-ordinary moment.

Thorpe and DARPA came up with SIMNET, described by Jacobsen [p. 257] as “an affordable, large-scale, free-play, force-on-force worldwide networked” “realization of cyberspace”, the world’s first massively multiplayer online role-playing game” [MMORPG]. 

“One of the most popular MMO’s is World of Warcraft” with ten millionactive users. “… in 2008, the CIA, NSA and DARPA launched a covert data-mining effort, called Project Reynard” to determine how they play and interact. [p. 258] Said Thorpe, “The behavior in a virtual world is the same behavior as the behavior in the real world.



When an article about local area developers for this approach appeared in the Boston Globe, I practiced my best short telephone ‘elevator speech’ and called the first company listed in the article.  The receptionist said “oh, you want to talk to our CEO; he’s standing right here” and within two weeks I was a subject matter consultant on the development of a civilian emergency management training system with a pathogenic animal disease scenario. The focus was sharpened to an outbreak of avian influenza in Georgia’s poultry industry; when I did some telephonic research, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation took notice and called the project manager at MAK Technologies and told them to tell me to ‘quit it’.  

He was the company’s developer of new business and a reserve Navy pilot to whom I introduced Boyd’s OODA loop.  Later, he introduced me to one of his buddies who was involved in training a special elite military unit tasked with the response to Federal and State facilities in the event of an RBC event. We also talked about Summon The Magic, because we met at a ballgame where my daughter was playing, and he was impressed when I gave him my “poster on teamwork”. 

The other sub-contractors on this DARPA Terrorist Studies Working Group project were the Georgisa Tech Research Institute and the University of Georgia’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences; they were in charge of the development of the print and classroom curriculum; our job (following their successful roll-out of MAGTF, the training game for Marine amphibious assault) was to develop the game. 

Working with two software engineers, we developed and condensed a scenario and timeline that had five players, each playing five separate roles, responding to a two-week long event compressed into two hours of game time. The group’s task was to identify the source of the contagion and shut it down; if unable to do so, the disease would spread rapidly. 36 hours of virtual time was the red line; much beyond 14 minutes of real-time game itneraction would metastasize into health and economic failure. 

The game engine, which I devised, came out of discussions with a British game developer in Montreal, having been a beta player of an e-mail game on organizational development designed with the input of a world-class game designer by the name of Thiagi, and several months of  on-and-off immersion in the scenario. 

The project was eventually cancelled despite our briefing the key people from TSWG and the USDA inside the Crystal Palace in Arlington; I was told it was because of financial improprieties at GTRI or UGA, but I suspect they found out I’d co-written the position paper by The Physicians for Social Responsibility on the civilian-military contingency hospital system, the Reagan-era plan for importing victims of a battlefield nuclear exchange in the Fulda Gap to East Coast Hopsitals; you can get a sense of that debate by reading the two New York Times letters below. The CMCHS was the twin sister for their Crisis Relocation Planning brainstorm that they could have the people in cities targeted by Russia get in their cars and drive to a twin city.  (The new business pilot at MAK was, I sense, terminated for his failure to have vetted me properly.  They finally heard from someone at Raytheon.)  



Given DARPA’s own estimate of a 28-minute lead time before nuclear annihiliation, someone’s not thinking clearly. I trust you’ve seen the videos and photos of the traffic jams coming out of Miami. 

DARPA and the Pentagon have moved on with games and simulations; the “Dark Winter” exercise was a major example. 

See my IAEM paper: 

Coalescing Effective Community Disaster Response: Simulation and Virtual Communities of Practice

December 2005


Since the Bolt, Beranek and Newman TRADOC effort to train for the Battle of 73 Easting, major strides have been made in DARPA’s partnership with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, the ability to survey, observe and scrutinze populations and their living spaces (page 269) (“born classified”). the use of surveillance and micro-sensing devices mounted on infrastructure to monitor motor vehicle and pedestrian streams, “to track everything that moves” (page 370), “using techniques similar to those for Google maps” (used for example on Main Supply Route Tampa out of Baghdad), the Stealthy Insect Sensor Project and other micro-UAV’s, and the collection of data from human terrain mapping programs (p. 394) all pumped through massive computers with “predictive modeling capabilities” (page 372) at a cost that clearly measures in the billions of dollars, we do not yet have an evacuation simulation program, or a game or a training system, but we do have Palantir and data-based “predictive” tools, https://boingboing.net/2017/09/08/weaponized-empiricism.html  and now we have “an app” https://techcrunch.com/2017/09/10/zello-tops-us-app-store-as-the-walkie-talkie-for-hurricane-volunteers/.

This suggests to me that our system of elite governance, influenced by Wall Street and foreign countries, is more interested in spending its resources on war than on serving and protecting its own population during natural disasters.  

Imagine what might happen when they turn all that capacity on the numerous forms of  domestic insurgencies. 








Book-writing update:

58 Books have been fully annotated and re-shelved

15 Books remain to be annotated (1 book has one sentence noted)

3 Books need to be read and annotated

10 Books have not been read and may not be of value

1 Book dropped from list: it did not include a certain specific word and thus proves itself to not telling the whole truth


“… Wu wei has been practiced both within and outside of existing social and political structures. In the Daode Jing, Laozi introduces us to his ideal of the “enlightened leader” who, by embodying the principles of wu wei, is able to rule in a way that creates happiness and prosperity for all of a country’s inhabitants…..” 



The difference between heaven and hell:

Hell is a large banquet hall filled to overflowing with the most sumptuous foods on the face of the earth, but everyone’s arms are splinted in extra-long splints that prevent bending of the elbows; no one can pick up any of the food. 

Heaven is that same banquet hall with the people wearing the same splints but, instead of starving, they simply learned how to feed each other. 



Towards Extraordinary Capability

The 17th chapter of the e-book on how to use your mind is entitled “Inner Game Coaching” and , as you might surmise, is based to a very great degree on the work of Tim Gallwey. Eight of the citations belong to him. At 27 pages, it’s small.

It starts off comparing military models against athletic models for “toughening” and presents one method for developing and designing an audio CD tool that entrains learners as they undertake and master a complex set of team/mission integrated challenges or skills with goal statements, affirmations and specific “cueing” that helps learners improve performance.  There’s enough explanation that you could develop one for your own performance challenges relatively easily or, given some resources and time, use this model developed for a military competition for your own small group performance evolution.

The chapter then walks you through a look at Gallwey’s approach to awareness instruction, as well as his coaching questions and coaching conversations approach.


When a person’s basic security is in doubt, most everything that happens seems threatening. All doubts find fertile ground. Motivation, focus and trust evaporate. Individual, team and organizational productivity suffer greatly as a consequence.


The 18th chapter of the e-book, at 7 pages, is even smaller and consists of excerpts from The Ultimate Athlete: Revisioning Sports, Physical Education and The Body, by George Leonard ( Viking Press, 1974) on play, the game of games, and moments of transcendence.


Tab Q (Inner Game Coaching)


Tab R (The Ultimate Athlete)


Tab S (Toward Extraordinary Capability)


The 19th chapter of the e-book starts off with that quote from Keefe’s book “On The Sweet Spot” that summed up or encapsulated the reason I spent years typing excerpts to share with the world.

It plunges into that small epicenter of insight, practice and full expression that exploded out of the meetings and conversations of a small handful of people on the West Coast, all authors whose books hold the spinal weight of the bibliography, whose own merger of mind, body and spirit outside an aikido dojo (and access to publishing houses) have informed so many and fostered work that continues today around the globe.

That quote is followed by three pages of excerpted material that fleshes out the deathbed revelations of Roland Perlmutter, M.D.

The 19th chapter also includess an extended look at human capacities for the extraordinary, “when mind and body are graced by something beyond themselves”.


All transformative change begins with awareness and intention.


It has a short section on telepathic communication. It discusses several approaches for “the development of extraordinary capacity”, and the embodiment of the metanormal.

It notes the “sixteen common foundations for effective enhancement of personal capacity and capability”.


… people have cultivated non-ordinary states of awareness such as meditation to manage the creative process along. Laszlo believes that these methods help people gain access to the nonlocal, collective source of wisdom. During highly creative moments, “there is almost always some element of transport to another plane of consciousness, a deep concentration that approaches a state of trance ,” he notes. “In some (relatively rare) cases, these inspired states are artificially induced — by drugs, music, self hypnosis or other means. Mostly, however, they come spontaneously to the ‘gifted’ individual….”

The urge to become absorbed in something greater — God, Goddess, Allah, Brahman, Universe, the One — underlies the drive of the great saints and mystics of all spiritual traditions and is also typical of many highly creative individuals. …


The stillness in stillness is not the real stillness;

only when there is stillness in movement

does the universal rhythm manifest.


Grasp the essence

And move on toward realization.






source of featured image: http://www.maxplanckflorida.org/kwonlab/research/ 

Je Ne Sais Quoi #3

Je Ne Sais Quoi Day Three



Tim Gallwey


[i’ve chosen this image here rather than his smiling face above because I found this book to be superb.  While I’ve read the ones about tennis and golf, I never played much tennis and I absolutely suck at golf, which is ironic because my son is a competitive amateur golfer with a handicap that hovers in the single digits. But he’d already been exposed to similar material and he applied himself. Funny thing about hard work and practice…. I have just ordered the book Galley co-wrote with Barry Green called “The Inner Game of Music”.]

“… In every workplace, we need to win. The workplace is not a social event, and our survival is always on the line. This doesn’t answer the fundamental questions of purpose and meaning, both for the institution and the individual. In a quiet and concrete way, the Inner Game argues for creating institutions that can offer people deeper meaning than just profitability, while at the same time achieving economic success.  How can we play a game where the human spirit is validated and still get good work done? Most organizations have this desire, but they are still wedded to a way of thinking that treats the person as a means to an economic end. The business has to prosper, but the person needs to find purpose beyond that and needs to do so in a way that nurtures rather than burns. Placing a higher value on learning, and the awareness that learning demands, offers us hope that this is possible.”

Peter Block, author of Flawless Consulting: A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used; The Empowered Manager: Political Skills at Work and Stewardship: Choosing Service Over Self-Interest, in the preface to The Inner Game of Work, byW. Timothy Gallwey (Random House, New York, 2000).


•Green, Barry; Gallwey, W. Timothy (1986). The inner game of music (1st ed.). New York: Anchor Press/Doubleday. ISBN 0-385-23126-1.

•Gallwey, W. Timothy. (2000). The Inner Game of Work. New York: Random House. ISBN 0-375-50007-3.

•Gallwey, W. Timothy. (2009). The Inner Game of Stress: Outsmart Life’s Challenges, Fulfill Your Potential, Enjoy Yourself. New York: Random House. ISBN 1-4000-6791-X.
a b Whitmore, John K. (2002). Coaching for Performance: Growing People, Performance and Purpose. London: Nicholas Brealey Publishing. p. 10. ISBN 1-85788-303-9.

Gallwey was one of the first to demonstrate a comprehensive method of coaching that could be applied to many situations, and found himself lecturing more often to business leaders in the U.S. than to sports people.[6]

Tim Gallwey’s work went on to found the current movement in business coaching, life coaching and executive coaching. One of the most well known exponents of business coaching is Sir John Whitmore, who popularised Graham Alexander’s and Alan Fine‘s GROW model of the coaching process.[6]












Coaching is primarily concerned with the type of relationship between the coach and the coachee,  and the means and style of communication used. The objective of improving performance is paramount, but how that is best achieved is what is in question. Gallwey says that if a coach can help the player to remove or reduce the internal obstacles to his performance, an unexpected natural ability will flow forth without the need for much technical input from the coach. This is an approach that can be readily applied to almost any situation. Coaching is unlocking a person’s potential to maximize their own performance. It is helping them to learn, rather than teaching them.

Before the 1990s, technical ability and sport-appropriate fitness were what coaches worked on. The mind was not recognized to be crucial, and the prevailing theory seemed to be that the physical and mental talent you’re born with is all that you get, and no amount of coaching could radically alter or improve on it. The effect the coaches had on the state of mind of their performers was only unwittingly, and often negatively, influenced by autocratic methods and obsession with technique. Coaches in the past have denied their performers’ responsibility by telling them what to do; they denied their awareness by telling them only what the coach saw. The problem is that this method can and does produce reasonable results, or good performance, and so there is little motivation to try anything else, and the coach and the performer may never know or believe what they could achieve.

Starting in the 1990s, however, sports psychologists have been increasingly employed in both the athletic and business settings to develop attitudinal training, although this has been difficult to “sell” to many coaches who, unaware themselves of all alternative approaches, often intentionally unintentionally negate the best efforts of mind/body trainers and the performer who’s adopting their methods.

This approach — the teaching of the application of mental school skills, efforts at empowerment of athletes and others, and the use of took coaching techniques described by Galway, Whitmore, Heckler and others — seems to threaten the authority, egos and principles of some involved in coaching. This is simply an exaggeration of fears. And, while the resource of time is surely limited, the long-term benefits for the developing adolescent can be dramatic and extend beyond the playing fields and into their lives. What is being proposed should not be perceived as a threat, but merely a proposal that changing these directions will produce better results. The best way to develop and maintain the ideal state of mind for performance is to build awareness and responsibility throughout daily practice and the skill acquisition process.

Coaching for Performance: A Practical Guide to Growing Your Own Skills, John Whitmore, Pfeiffer and Company, 1994.



https://vimeo.com/5902861 (57 seconds)


“One’s true capacity for moving, or being moved, can be achieved only when one’s commitment to others is in fact connected to and derived from his primary commitment to himself.  When the learner can find this kind of alignment of purpose, there is a harmony of motivation that can provide the fuel and clarity to overcome great obstacles in the pursuit of great challenge.”


Coaching for learner initiated choice

Two observations stand out as I reflect on my early experience with coaching performance in sports. The first is that almost everyone who came to me for lesson was trying very hard to fix some aspect of their game that they didn’t like. They expected me to provide a remedy for their problem. The second is the relative effortlessness with which change for the better takes place when they stop trying so hard and trusted in their capacity to learn from their own experience.

With a common context of the coach telling the learner what should and shouldn’t be done, the learner’s pattern of behavior becomes predictable. Placing his trust in the judgment of feedback of the teacher, the student’s responsibility becomes merely to do what he is told. Thus, he tries hard not to do what he shouldn’t do, and to make himself do what he should. The coach says “good” (really, “good, you are trying to obey me”) and the student learns to associate “good” with a forced and unnatural approach, and so it goes, over and over again. If change is viewed as movement from bad to good, as defined and initiated by someone other than the one who needs to make the change, it is done in a judgmental context that usually brings resistance, doubt and fear of failure with it. Neither student or teacher is likely to be aware that this approach to change undermines the student’s eagerness and responsibility for learning.

My role as a coach was not just to make the immediate goal is clear as possible but to evoke from the student the underlying purpose and motivation for reaching the goal. Allowing the student to be more aware of the choices he was making and the reasons behind those choices was an essential part of the learning process. The student felt more in control and as a natural consequence was willing to accept more responsibility, and exercise greater initiative and creativity in achieving their goals; it also greatly diminishes the resistance to change inherent in the command-and-control model.

There’s an old saying, “When you insist, I resist.” It is natural for a person to resist encroachment on his boundaries, and when the resistance isn’t expressed directly, it will come out indirectly. Either way, the resistance is detrimental to the outcome. To students used to the command-and-control model, having a greater degree of control is often disconcerting. But when the student learns that his choices were not going to be judged by the coach as right or wrong, he accepts his role as the choice-maker and accepts responsibility for the outcome of those choices.

Many positive elements for learning and change result from the shift. It keeps the initiative for learning and change in the hands of the student, generating a greater sense of personal involvement and participation. It prevents the learning from being merely by rote and thus easily forgotten. It allows for much greater involvement on the part of the learner. It allows for changes to take place naturally as true understanding grows. It engages the attitudes and feelings of the learners and often provokes changes that pervade every aspect of their lives. When choices for learning and change are allowed to be self-initiated and self-regulated, they become more comprehensive as well as more enjoyable.

The Inner Game of Work, W. Timothy Gallwey, Random House, 2000.


Breakout (short three-page intro)



From The Inner Game of Golf:

The Nature of Games: The Experience of Excellence Expressing Itself

All games have certain qualities in common. They are limited in time; they have designated beginnings and ends. They are limited in space; they are played within specific physical boundaries. They have goals, and obstacles that must be overcome to reach those goals. They are always limited by a set of rules.  Learning occurs most naturally in a setting where mistakes can be made without dire consequences. Yet learning and growth also require the acceptance of challenge, and the motivation to reach a goal is not always attained. Hence the value of a game lies in its ability to create an illusion, a separate reality in which you can experiment and take risks without great penalties for failure.

The simulated challenges, obstacles and pressures of competition are for the purpose of enjoyment and learning better how to meet the real challenges of life.  In addition, games can be an expression of skill for the sake of excellence. It can be art.

So, in the final analysis, we hold to one goal:

to express our best in the direction of the game’s goal,

not for the sake of that goal

but for the experience of excellence expressing itself.

Our punishment for not doing our best is immediate and simple; we do not feel the excellence.  By not making the effort to concentrate and relinquish control, we don’t get the pleasure that comes when we do. Our reward and our punishment are immediate and indivisible, and they do not emerge from frustration, thoughts and expectations.




[podcast][more available through that source]


“To perpetrate doubt”, says Gallwey, and in the quote he refers to the educational system, the parent-child relationship, or manager-employee relationships, “is one of the most debilitating — though often unconscious — crimes against human potential.”

The quote is from Timothy Gallwey, the author of a series of books devoted to the development of personal and professional excellence in a variety of fields, what he calls The Inner Game. This particular quote comes from the inner book of tennis. One of his books is The Inner Game of Work. (As John Janovy Jr. says, “When your business is the conversion of human potential into reality, you can find work anywhere….”)

I don’t think there is much room for doubt about the fact that our inner game of work includes improving society, limiting interpersonal conflict, reducing warfare, improving well-being, increasing human potential; we have a lot of work to do. And we must work together because, as individuals, we cannot do it alone no matter how much we embrace the tools of the noetic sciences.

Belief and discipline are closely related.

“The cost” Gallwey goes on to say “of not recognizing” [and counteracting] the creation in another of doubt “is high, not only for the individual but for the group of organization [or community or society]. When doubt becomes an internalized norm, the spirit suffers, a sense of purpose decays, dignity declines, excellence and greatness go into hiding, and the seeds for decadence and failure are germinated.” The perpetration of doubt about belief is destructive; it’s like dropping phosphorus bombs into the spirit.

“The reason that doubt is such an enemy is that it attacks the will itself. Anxiety and fear are emotional and psychological disturbances that make functioning more difficult, doubt weakens the will, which is at the center of our being. Doubt can cripple a person desire to act, think or even to live. ”



L. Michael Hall, Ph.D.: 12 pages on Gallwey, Meta-States, and the Inner Game

http://theinnergame.com http://meta-coaching.org/free-articles/Timothy%20Gallwey%20Meta%20States%20and%20Inner%20Game.pdf 



PDF:  Gallwey on Self 1, Self 2 and Doubt



Musical Interlude for Notes:

No Doubt About It,  Jimmy Smith

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F2fmsartpZQ (7:10)



Tomorrow: A master of mediation who has built the foundational research archive on extraordinary human functioning and the transformative techniques used to get there.

What can we do?


What can we do?


Music audio:

Dhafer Youssef & Hüsnü Şenlendirici 

‘dance of the invisible dervishes’ 

19.07.2012 Istanbul



“What can we do?” is an attempt to answer the question for myself and perhaps for others “what we can doin the face of rampant, nearly-unstoppable psychopathological evil taking form in genocide, endless war, total surveillance, advancing militarization, and near-complete totalitarianism.

I apologize for the length of this entry (100 pages). Brevity has never been my strong suit.  But I am learning and trying. (Mrs. Blogger brought home from the book store two more books: “Born to Blog” and “Twitter for Dummies”. Mastery of the latter requires brevity and it will also help the former.)

I have broken the piece down into three chunks, and I will provide a summary/abstract follows and is repeated at the conclusion. See the tag cloud above.

The whole thing contains 78 links, seven pdf’s, five videos totaling 19 minutes, and nine pieces of music totaling 93 minutes.

It is an opinion, a POV, a synthesis that contains some thoughts about self-awareness, the use of the metaphor of aikido in communications and relationships, the story about Gurdjieff’s teachers by LeFort, the book “Born to be Good” by Keltner (about the facial muscles and communications, and more), a book by Standage about social media as practiced for two millennia, some thoughts about physicians entailed “Further Prescriptions”, and a book by a physician entitled “Why Us?”.

Indeed, why us?

It is broken into three parts.

Part One, including this summary or abstract, runs about 20 pages and includes the introductory thoughts, a four-page pdf intro to Dacher Keltner’s “Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life”,  a 4-page pdf sidebar on verbal aikido and the use of aikido concepts in situations of conflict (and there are other books by Dobson, Heckler, et al), some thoughts on awareness, an intro to LeFanu’s book “Why Us?” and a 15-page pdf of excerpts, some thoughts on conflict, and catharsis, a link to a major article on planetary consciousness, another on native American perspectives, and a short look at my own orientation to mountains.

Part Two focuses on empathy, the concept of wu wei, creativity, contains a 14-page look at my orientation to physicians, has a further focus on children, relationships, society, alignment, leadership, the failure of science in a specific case as noted by a highly-recognized-and-honored scientist, more on face-to-face communication, and a short précis on organizational learning.

Part Three looks at happiness, self-awareness, Heaven, truth, conflict, some further personal expressions on what we can do, a look at Rafael LeFort’s story about his search for the teachers of Gurdjieff (as well as links to articles that have an opposing POV) and an academic paper on the influence of Gurdjieff on noted jazz pianist Keith Jarrett).

What we can do is to keep learning.  This comes from LeFort’s story about Gurdjieff and elsewhere. 

We can learn about consciousness (see Zimmerman, Burrowes, Le Fanu et al, and consult your own mind). 

We can gravitate toward truth, at least our truth

We can practice alignment

We can engage in harmony during conflict (see Ueshiba). 

We can become better at and practice more frequently the arts and sciences of interaction, encounter, and face-to-face communications (see Keltner). 

We can master social media (see the books mentioned above, and others, and Standage). 

We can create community (see Corbett). 

We can become leaders of our communities, if only through the above steps. 

We can teach our truth (see “Architect for Learning”). 

We can engage with the dominant mainstream media more effectively, and we can create new media

We can create. 

We can touch people. 

We can move people.

We can love. 


Comments are welcome through the contact page.  I will assemble the best and most articulate, and post them.



What can we do? (Part One)

I awoke one Saturday morning a couple of weeks ago with a lot on my mind.  

Perhaps it was remnants of a dream, or more likely the mental dust from having browsed a few books lying around on my bed and bedside table.

Right now, my reading has been somewhat discombobulated; I’m jumping around.

I jump from book to book, and personal problem or encounterto another of a different type, and then back to a book after extended reading on the world wide web.

Sometimes synthesis emerges from this.

I decided I’ll give it a try here.

My biases, I noted to myself, are that I come from

  • an autodidactic study of positive/performance psychology with a minor sub-branch in cognitive science that seeks to empower individuals,
  • from a lifetime of focus on emergency service, and
  • from the combination of those two in teamwork and leadership.

Pressing on the corpus callosum of synthesis: the recent expressions of frustration and despair I’ve seen on the net which join my own.

I speak of Kenny and Noor, specifically, though they are only representative of a much larger group.

“In my travels this week it has been both discouraging and disappointing to find that although there are many willing to talk about what’s going on in Iraq and the Middle East, there are few who understand what is really happening. That’s not to say I have it all correct but most regurgitate the mainstream slop as reality and it means the propaganda is working. A calm mention of false flags and hired deviant Wahhabi terrorists or wars for empire and Israel are met with odd looks. Americans are so slow to catch on and admit they have been deceived. Awareness is a first line defense. Unfortunately it is in short supply.”

Posted by kenny at 12:02 PM

We all ask what is it that we can do….

“Your contribution can be as simple as making changes in your personal life and aligning yourself with right principles and truth. It may be as big as speaking out on important issues and spreading ideas for change.…”


A number of pictures serve as the backdrop; all of them feature children. The best of us think of the children we know and how we can care for them, guide them, nurture them. (How can you not cry when you read of Namous?)



[Shirley Horn sings in the background …. “Why Didn’t I See?”

Earlier, she asked  “Where Do You Start?” ]

(Music informs our personal and interpersonal synthesis.)



Israeli airstrike creates a pond in Gaza City



I read about the world and the current turns of events; all I want to do is weep.

Iraq again? I am speechless at what these demons do to work their evil on Russia and China via Iran via Iraq. Iraq was Balkanized for the creation of just such regional wars as we see today ~ all goes according to plan.

I read about the nuclear depopulation programme in place and feel so helpless ~ there is so much to Iraq and DU and Fukushima and Chernobyl ~ it is overwhelming. But, I digress, back to Iraq.

What plan? Any plan. They have created so many stewpots of division and hatred around the globe that there is no shortage of plans to fall back on. Anywhere.

That hatred we work so hard to keep under wraps is giving me a tough time. Hatred is such an easy fix but giving in to hatred means one has given up all hope. It concedes defeat. It is a weakness to be exploited since hatred seems to warp all focus. So I cry a lot it seems. Listen to a lot of music, stare out the window and think. That light at the end of the tunnel seems to get further and further away.

Our losses seem to keep mounting up, like the Canadian Federal Government approving the Enron pipeline this week.   Yet they have the nerve to brag about Canada’s environmental record! No one wants this development although it is already far more along than most people are aware. Construction preparation is well underway. It makes me truly want to vomit.

Posted by Noor al Haqiqa at 11:54 PM


All this has, of course, intensified as a result of the events in the Ukraine and the continued and escalated genocidal attacks on the people — especially the children — inside the open-air concentration camp known as Gaza. These are modern-day technological advances on the occupation of Native American lands and the actions at Wounded Knee et al.

The books include Dacher Kelter’s “Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life” [see http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/author/Dacher_Keltner], started in seriousness, with highlighter as bookmark, before I got distracted with having to pack everything and hump it all down a flight of stairs. In my case, a lot of the heavy lifting got done by family. I hit a rut when he got to the part about coding facial displays and understanding the emotional controls through the vagus nerve. I stopped at the the facial muscular vocabulary and the choreography of “smile”, and have yet to tackle the parallel material dealing with “laughter”, “tease”, “touch”, “love”, “compassion”, “awe” and “reverence”.

Because I tend to jump around, I did highlight a small piece on page 226 which read as follows:

Flight/fight tendencies of self-preservation are continually at odds with tendencies to care in the electro-chemical flow of our nervous systems. The content of the mind shifts between the press of self-interest and the push of compassion. The ebb and flow of marriages, families, friends, and workplaces track a dynamic tension between these two great forces — raw self-interest and a devotion of the welfare of the other. The study of emotion is experiencing its own “sympathy breakthrough” thanks to recent studies of compassion, which are revealing this care taking emotion to be built into our nervous systems. The study of this emotion holds new clues about the health of marriages, families, and communities.


I’ve picked Born To Be Good back up now and you can follow along: see the sidebar in pdf format here.     Dacher Keltner Jen

Is this a suggestion for the value of face-to-face interaction in a world heavily given to faceless social media? Yes.

How do we encounter people halfway across the globe and who speak a different language?

Is the emerging technology of online collaboration viable?



I’ve all-but-finished Tom Standage’s “Writing on the Wall” [ writing-on-the-wall ], a chronology of media since the days of the Roman Empire; I’m the 20th century and moving toward the 21st. I’m at the part where he describes the development of “webs” of communication among the telegraph operators (foreshadowing “Mr. Tom” and his friends who used listserv mechanisms among computer operators before the Internet was formalized.) [Today you can build a private discussion board for invited guests only or fashion a Twitter network.] There are some good thoughts about the press and the social media which make me, a blogger by choice, reflect. I’ll have to finish his section on radio and its use as a means of propaganda dissemination; today we have podcasting. And I haven’t yet delved into his discussion of television, “the drug of the nation”. But then I already have a degree in communications studies and I have blogged about these for years.

I’ve watched/listened to James Corbett’s podcast/video which promises and delivers free and critical thinking; as a blogger, I’m certainly an alternative and have left the MSM/TV world except as momentary entertainment or glimpse into the world to which I am opposed. [They’re watching us so intensively that we need to keep an eye on them to know what they’re doing, capable of, and planning.]



I’m working on and thinking a lot about verbal aikido, or the application of the lessons of the Shintoism-oriented shaman I know as O Sensei, that little man who took the violence that he found and transformed it into an effective tool of defense and simultaneously a tool of teaching, enlightenment and love.

He reminds me of Derrick Jensen in his transmutation of hate and violence into teaching and activism [see “A Language Older Than Words” et alia].

I write a lot about aikido, not because I progressed far in the discipline but because it fascinates me and I’ve read a lot about it.  [I did progress far enough to peer through the rip in the curtain.]  Again, see the sidebar on aikido below.



aikido and relationships 

I mentioned my fascination with what aikido has to teach us about relationships and the fact that it might inform someone close to me about whom I care deeply (both parties in the conflict) in a short e-mail to a new contact; he’s a fellow who has had significant contact with the world of military intelligence but left it and explored the world of Native Americans.

He sent me

Being Nature’s Mind: Indigenous Ways of Knowing and Planetary Consciousness [ delvingdeeper.org/being.pdf ]as well as a link to his own work:

Napi in the new age (on quantum mechanics and the Native American).

What jump-started this thought process was having leafed through some sections of James Le Fanu’s “Why Us?: How Science Rediscovered The Mystery of Ourselves”:


Le Fanu is an open critic of materialism and Darwinism.[4] He is the author of the controversial book Why Us?: How Science Rediscovered the Mystery of Ourselves, in which he claims that Darwin’s theory of evolution is a materialistic theory that fails to explain consciousness and the experience of the human being.[4] He states that it is not enough to conjure the wonder of the human experience from the study of bones, genes and brains alone.[7] According to a review of his book by the New Scientist, Le Fanu argues for the existence of an immaterial “life force”.[8] Le Fanu is not a creationist and does not argue for God, instead he argues for a non-physical cosmic force which he claims could explain where consciousness originates from; he also claims it may explain many of the other mysteries unexplained by material science.[9][10] 



For more on this book and author, see the sidebar below entitled “Why Should We Be Different?”

Why Should We Be So Different?


I’ve spoken of the need to find or form an association of bloggers — perhaps this feeds into Corbett’s thoughts on alternative media — and Ron said he wanted to know what I’d found, or join in.  [He’s already done so with his contributions here.]

James speaks of empaths [I hope I am one] and psychopaths [I’ve met more than a few and hope that I am not one of their peers.].

James says “It is a fundamental mistake to battle your opponent using their weapon of choice”, an interesting variation of the aikido lessons about disarming an opponent.

But how do you disarm an opponent that is armed to the teeth?



The picture is reminiscent of the staves carried by the residents of Worcester County as described in Ray Raphael’s “First American Revolution”.

Taking the weapon away from the opponent:

You must take a position in which you are facing the same direction or “seeing things” the way your opponent does… you must get close to him in order to control him and his weapon. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVaC2UY1vRA (2:32)

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yrJ5Y6tuNj8 (1:56)

Compare this to the infiltrative techniques practiced and taught by neoconservative Jewish intellectualism and the theories espoused by Edward Luttwak in his book Coup d’État: A Practical Handbook

What is the effective counter-move? 

If the truest, most honorable warriors were willing to risk their lives to count coup on an opponent without intention of harming that opponent, we can only marvel at the nonviolent psychology and wonder where it might have gone.


Brad J. Bushman published “Does Venting Anger Feed or Extinguish the Flame?” (PSPB, Vol. 28 No. 6, June 2002 724-731) which demonstrates that “catharsis” is not effective in reducing anger or aggressiveness. While expressing emotion is healthy, it does not extinguish the source of the emotion. Learning to kick, punch, or be “powerful” doesn’t deal with the issue causing negative emotion and this study demonstrates that individuals who depend on cathartic behaviors tend to be more reactive in future moments of stress, anxiety, and conflict.


Zimmerman’s treatise on indigenous and Native American spirituality, sent on by Ron, talks about unbridgeable chasms between culture, methods by which we can “finally begin to see into another way of being and other ways of knowing”, and introduces the topic of child-rearing. The hand that rocks the cradle, and the involvement of the village, and other theories not withstanding, Zimmerman, George Lakoff, and Ron approach the issue from the perspective of “dialogue at the meta-level”.

Mary Jane Zimmerman’s goal “is to help readers from any culture begin to become aware of how deeply embedded our cultural modes of perceiving are and how different they may be from those of other cultures. This type of self-reflexive awareness is necessary for true dialogue and can also be facilitated by dialogue.”

“It is now crucial for members of the dominant Western culture to begin to see how current global environmental, social, and political problems have sprung from the Western tendency to think in terms of discrete units and how we have largely lost the ability to see connected, interwoven patterns of motion.”

I’m not going to try to characterize Ron’s perspective. I’ve just begun to get to know and read this fellow and I am struck by the depth of his experience and perception. We share some common experiences and interests, but probably in the way that an apple and a banana both share a peel. I urge you to begin to read his blog. I have much to learn. I also urge you to read Mary Jane Zimmerman’s work on planetary consciousness

“… everything in the cosmos is connected and that all physical bodies and all minds are expressions of a deeper spiritual essence “(Begay and Maryboy 277)….

“The human is closely related to the mountain because both exist at the center between Mother Earth and Father Sky.”

The Native American and the Taoist — connected through a land bridge— both understand this.  The Shintoist Morihei Ueshiba understands this and brings it to the art and discipline of aikido. There’s an understanding of quantum physics buried in all of this too. It is spoken of as “a participatory understanding of reality. If we see the world as a place of gift, where the earth and the beings on the earth are fond of humans and want to help them, we will experience its abundance; we will be able to ‘participate in the conversation of the Gift’.”


My own relationship with mountains includes Greylock and Cadillac. I have chunks of granite and marble from each as desktop talismans. I’ve seen the sunrises and sunsets off both, have camped on or near them, but these are not uncommon experiences. Nor, I hope, are the ones I’ve had throughout New England in moments of deep meditation.

Greylock is one of the rare and southern-most taigaboreal forests in New England.  I spent a decade living in the lower mouth of the glacial cirque at its Western base; that location is hidden, at virtual dead center in the photo. The Taconic range stands behind to the west.  The estate belonging to a Rockefeller and her husband and devoted to the genetic betterment of farm livestock sprawled across one of its ridges. [How is is that we are interested in breeding better cows and chickens at the same time we bomb wheat fields?]

The origin of the present name of Greylock and its association with the mountain is unclear. It first appeared in print about 1819, and came into popular use by the 1830s. It may be in reference to its appearance, as it often has a gray cloud, or lock of gray mist upon his head, or in tribute to a legendary Native American chief, Gray Lock.[18] Gray Lock (c. 1670-1750) was a Western Abenaki Missisquoi chief of Woronoco-Pocomtuc ancestry, born near Westfield, Massachusetts. Gray Lock distinguished himself by conducting guerrilla raids into Vermont and western Massachusetts.[19]

Derrick Jensen’s works speak of forging an orientation to and awareness of the indigenous people who once occupied the land you occupy.

The Mahican people were closely associated with this region, and it was easy for a child weaned on “Light in the Forest” to imagine himself a Mahican as he walked, ran and sat in contemplation.

One day when I was about 12, I set on my haunches on the edge of a brook, lost in the thoughts facilitated by the continuous burble of the run-off from the rain forest.

A bobcat came down the to the edge of the stream to drink its fill.


I wasn’t afraid. It looked up at me suddenly when it discovered that I was there too, but I instantly and silently telegraphed a message that I meant it no harm. It turned back to its satiation, and then disappeared as suddenly and quietly as it came.

Years later, I sat with my back against the warm granite shelving of Pemaquid Point and listened to the waves as I basked in the sun. I think the expression “lost in reverie” is appropriate; I was on the way home from a three-day honeymoon trip up the coast of Maine to Acadia and back. I’d shown the future mother/grandmother the loveliness of Mount Desert Island.  I still kick myself when I think about the fact that we couldn’t find the way to buy that 10-acre plot of land at the northern-most tip of Somes Sound. But coastal Maine has lots of magic to be found in it, and that afternoon it sent me a message. I’ve written about that moment several times. It was an epiphany.

The message I got in an instant, downloaded at quantum speed, was that I was part of it all, and I was it, and that it was me, and that I was “here” for it, and that it was “here” for me.


“Rupert Ross, a Canadian lawyer who has worked most of his life on the northern reserves in Ontario, also writes about the sensitivity and open attitude required to learn what he calls “pattern-thought,” the ability to take in vast amounts of information from the natural world (70).”

Derrick Jensen has written an entire book on this called “Listening to the Land”, “conversations with environmentalists, theologians, Native Americans, psychologists, and feminists, engaging some of our best minds in an exploration of more peaceful ways to live on Earth.”

Michael Murphy and others have delved deeply into the ways in which the human mind can connect with the cosmos; I think in particular of “In The Zone” and The Future of the Body, “a massive historical and cross-cultural collection of documentation of various occurrences of extraordinary human functioning such as healing, hypnosis, martial arts, yogic techniques, telepathy, clairvoyance, and feats of superhuman strength. Rather than presenting such documentation as scientific proof, he presents it as a body of evidence to motivate further investigation.”  [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Murphy_(author) ]

Ron sent me something on remote viewing, too.