Saturday, April 4, 2015

Who Do We Lie To When We Tell Ourselves Not To Do It?

Who else?  The deprived and needy self who is incessant in her grasping, social climbing and wants.  “I tell myself I should stop eating so much, but I cannot seem to stop”.  The needy self cannot listen because it is heeding the needs from below.  It is all in the service of getting fulfilled symbolically.   And the lying self does not really want to lie but she needs and has no other choice.  Or someone I know cheated someone and said, “it is OK because I am straight with my God.”  Or, "I don’t discriminate but the new law tells me that If I declare I follow God then I can discriminate".  I assume that means, as it used to, “I don’t have to serve Blacks” for example.  So under God anything goes.  He dictates and I follow slavishly, and I am morally correct because I am not challenging God, I am his obedient servant.

But wait a minute, what about if I too follow God and he tells me to enter that store and be served? Now we have two Gods with contradictory messages.   Who to obey?  After all, no one person has a monopoly on religion.  Suppose my God is Allah?  Can I just obey him or is there only one God in the repertoire?  Does that support the constitution on freedom of religion?  No matter, he is my God and I listen to him no matter whom you listen to.  Can two Gods have different ideas? Which one says that it is OK not to serve gays.  What if the other God says it is OK?

Tricky territory with a very loose moral compass.  And some use only the one that suits their needs.  Why not get rid of the whole idea and serve all humans?  Because the governor has the ear of those bigots who want to legitimize  discrimination and make it all sound so religious and moral;  how to turn immorality into morality with the government’s help.   This is never to expand liberty but to deny it.  "I won’t serve gays because God told me not to".  Was it God who let you be immoral?  "I’m not immoral cause I am obeying God".  Isn’t that the same thing? God helps you discriminate, so it is not you, it is Him?  "God is letting me exercise my free will to keep gays and Blacks out".  Don’t forget that for many decades that is exactly what it meant:  “We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.”  So the government is saying I will be complicit in your hate so long  as you couch it in religio-moral terms.  Then it is not longer you; it is just your beliefs.  Oh no, that is not enough.  If you hate you need a moral cover; so it has to be my religious beliefs.  Since you can call anything your religious beliefs you are now free to do anything.  Charming.


  1. Hi,

    I have entertained several 'formal belief systems' through my life and each has allowed me to hide behind them as a defense against perceiving (and ultimately feeling) my own griefs.

    In a way this has made me into a prostitute of ideals. Consequently my life has become more complicated as time has gone by. One reason so many people elect one single religious belief system and stick to it is because deep down they know that to change beliefs will expose things they hide behind as they move from one belief to another. Rigidity allows for TOTAL protection; until the cracks appear that is.

    Like those naked dancers who use chiffon scarves and feathers to conceal their beauty, so have I 'danced' behind various ideas; trying NOT to expose myself. . .

    But now, after all this 'maneuvering' I am just standing in the wings wearing overalls and waiting to sweep the stage after the production is over. . .

    Paul G.

  2. Arthur, every nations tells us we are right and we all run off to kill whoever. Many have a number of gods in our head who contradict each other. Our parents, religious leaders, schools Governemnt Media, Which God do we follow the most.
    and yes, tow people of opposing beliefs can be a problem. 2 people of opposing political ideologies can be a problem. You didn't mention that one or the others. Even two people with the same religion can see it differently and conflict with each other. To be honest, your rhetoric is not that strong or rigorous. Luckly, my religion does not require me to reject Blacks or anyone else, based on race. Morals might be a bit different. But really, people do not give enough attention to what they believe or why they even believe what they do. Surely, if you are looking to find fault with religion, you can do better than this. politics is just as divisive or unifying, depending on the issue. PHilosphy, too. Even race can unite or divide. So people are pretty messed up. What is your real point?

    1. Hi apollo,

      nice to hear from you again. For me, after all my maneuverings, I have finally come to see that my beliefs (or should I say: "how belief works in me") are a defense against both internal and external pain. It has not been easy to grasp this because the beliefs seem to be like a coat, ie: not actually part of me; but (and it's a big BUT) when I don this coat I become shaped and protected by the coat and hidden even from myself by the coat.

      I become draped. . . If it were possible to analyse exactly the biochemical / neuronal link between the serotonin gating system and the way 'beliefs' bolster this gating system then Primal would be able to offer even more 'points' than you demand of Art. . . But (in the absence of Art's answer to your question), I sense Art's point is as I described above.

      Actually, given that Art has at least once implored us NOT to make this blog into a political forum he has also on occasion broken his own rules and made some very cutting critiques of politics & philosophy.

      To extrapolate further (oh no, here I go again) the coat I put on and wear kind of 'supports' and channels my act outs. . . I have several different coats and many different components to my act out. . . Quite a wardrobe in fact. For someone as shabby as me I continually surprise myself just exactly how 'proud' I am of my wardrobe. I even 'wear' my Landrover. . .

      Paul G.

    2. Hi,

      I've been getting some startling insight into my act outs and beliefs. The way they entwine together to protect me from the 'original causes'. For a long time now I've been on this fortnightly 'contact regime' with my daughter. Almost within 1 day of seeing her again I am starting to get 'separation trauma' feelings because I know I will have to leave her with her Mum and not see her again for two weeks.

      This was exactly what happened when I was at boarding school and those old feelings are being dredged up. . .

      At Easter I had her stay with me & my son at his flat for 9 days and most of my 'anxiety & grief' apparently vanished until the last two days. After that (and a bout of extreme grief in my car for two hours AGAIN) I immediately dived into an obsessive fascination with flight MH370. . . It's not about conspiracy but 'LOSS'. Reminded by Arts fascination with crime & justice stories there I am looking at all the fascinating stuff about mh370. The insight is really a feeling / connection and I am also connecting up to other 'obsessions' I have had and still have regarding lost tools, lost friends, lost opportunities and the terrifying search for them all that I could get embroiled in / with, If I didn't know better and didn't feel some of the grief that drives me. The search IS the act out.

      For as long as I am totally distracted by ("believe in") that search for substitutes in the here and now I will remain defended against any descent to the original causes. If I make a 'habit' out of my acting out loss then I will merely be skirting around the issues. But I still lose my keys, my specs, my wallet, my self even. . .

      Paul G.

  3. I've pondered before that religion, rather than reinforcing morality, actually allows us to deny it.

    It serves to reduce morality to a code, and likewise puts morality into the abstract which in turn allows us to (too easily) form the rationalisations we want to make.

    Take away the religion, and you're forced to confront what you really know is true and right. You are forced to "listen to your heart", so to speak, rather than turn your back on it via the moral anesthetic of "scripture".

    Oh...and Art, not everyone who believes in freedom of association is a bigot :) I myself think that racist are unfortunate people with major "issues", but I nonetheless believe that if a group of Black extremists want to set up their own little Black-only town then they should have the right to do so, as tasteless and childish as their convictions might be. (Though they certainly don't have the right to actively abuse other groups, of course).

  4. An email comment:
    "I am so grateful for all your posts thank you I know a lot of people who accept every word in the Bible no matter how crazy it is and it is pretty crazy."

    1. And my answer: "I am grateful that you are grateful" art.

  5. Hi,

    I am acutely aware of having become quite 'brittle' and pompous at times as a defense against the insidious and undermining effect of homelessness.

    Hopefully every one will notice a softening of my 'edges' now that I have at last got some 'concrete' boundaries. . . Perhaps it's not overstatement to say this blog has kept me alive in ways 'beyond belief'. . .

    Thank you ALL so much for brilliance that has lit very dark times, particularly YOU Art. . .

    Paul G.

  6. Paul my answer to your previous post and on the question of lying to myself!

    My home continues to be a fortress for greed! I protect all my interests and needs with what is needed to survive... for what was necessary to survive. I have a way back (it is a threat to my life) to be able to let go and it's hard ... I've never been taught otherwise. What I've "learned" is also all I have to learn from... it as alone in my own world. It is not easy for anyone to get in there with ideas about pain! Ask me anything I do that makes it impossible to answer the question... so maybe you understand what I mean? There is the question of what is so hard to get a hearing for Primal therapy!

    What regarding my lies... they have been my companions for survival... it has taken a long time for me to discover it! It hurts to remove them... it's a balancing act I once went for my survival and in many ways still goes. I talked even to inanimate objects in the attempt to find what I needed... the living scared me and in some way still do!


  7. At our suffering ... we have our consciousness enabling the Primal therapeutic process... but also the life-saving lies to be alive!

    Learning from loneliness (be totally alone)... loneliness where memories of need is so painful that you hardly can breathe! To escape is the only possible way to survive... survive feelings that burning like hell when they arise... arise for what they were/are. Burning for not having the time... the knowledge to react of what is behind (have an awareness of what it is)... be able to react to the hidden pain... pain for suffering associated with feelings of need that appear ONLY WHEN THE NEED LEAKING THROUGH! But also "normal" cements me in ADHD ... anxiety and depression. How am I... myself supposed to be KNOWLEDGEABLE to fish up those emotions? How am I... myself supposed to be ABLE to fish up those emotions... where can I be at a state... a consciousness that makes this possible?

    How does my world look like? It to keep me away from something like that and at the same time having to tackle it? That is the question to be asked for someone who wants to penetrate into the cause of suffering. Until now... I still have my lies thanking... thanking to be alive!


  8. Art, your anger is evident in this as in your recent essays, and I can´t help wnder if they are the natural and proper full human reactions to the craziness of "belief systems" or you have some unresolved primal stuff?
    I often feel reassured by reading "dry" but sane - ie informed, logical, intelligent - literature, and yet.....I think this is my problem. As such it is probably a general problem; people can´t handle the expression of strong emotions. Society clamps down on it and parents suppress it reflexively in their children.
    However, I digress. Written into the constitutions of "advanced" countries everywhere you will find "freedom of belief", and its necessary corollary "Freedom of expression". In practice it exists nowhere except on the net, but anyway, it is little more than a seductive, manipulative con; ie "we give you this to fool you into thinking we are fulfilling your real needs", just like a distressed child is given sweets or has a pacifier shoved into her mouth rather than deal with the real issues. So later, we get addicted to sweets, sugar, fags....just like in childhood, in order to avoid the real issues.
    Lets drop now from all our 3rd line adult discourse to 1st and 2nd line, because 3rd line beliefs mean jack shit to a 5 year old who is screaming inside to be held, or a baby in the crib terrified that Mummy will not come and he will die. Vivian Janov once wrote "Nothing matters except the reality of the child". But the number of unfeeling parents oblivious to this feeling reality and its intensity is staggering. Only unfeeling people can believe it is OK to leave a baby to"cry it out" or place her in a separate room from the parents. Back to 3rd line again and the void produced by unfeelingness is replaced by belief. Our belief systems hold us together. But they are an extremely poor substitute for real feeling. And who here thinks they are exempt from neurotic belief structures? You believe it is OK to eat the flesh of animals who have led short lives full of pain & misery? You think vaccinations are harmless? That dairy produce is healthy and necessary and humanely produced? That democracy is OK? That the US, the UK, France and the USSR were the "goodies" who beat the "baddies" in the SWW? Then you have a belief system. And because belief systems are defences against pain, even those brainwashed into us as children, they will be defended with aggression, even violence. In one of his blogs, Art says that animals have as large a feeling base as humans. Why would anyone assume otherwise? Please think about it, because billions of animals are living and dying EVERY DAY in horrific conditions; in factory farms, vivisection laboratories, and to a MUCH lesser extent in zoos, in private ownership and as hunters prey, and I wonder why, if what Art says is true, they are getting so little mention here? Even primal can become the opposite of what it purports to achieve when it becomes a closed belief system. What should happen is the recovery of ones OWN humanity, to FEEL empathy for all other sentient creatures. Very little mention of animals exists in the primal literature, and so it is here. How sad. How many of you BELIEVE aimals to be lower forms of life unworthy of equal rights? Isn´t that the insanity of belief? ie the apotheosis of the unfeeling human mind. enshrined in our sacred bloody constitutions, irrespective of the human and animal cost? Gary, Portugal

    1. Hi Gary,

      -"How many of you BELIEVE animals to be lower forms of life unworthy of equal rights? Isn´t that the insanity of belief"?

      Yes. But I don't believe animals are a lower form of life. Neither do US predators who prey on other sentient beings BELIEVE such (necessarily or by neocortical advantage).

      It's difficult to resolve our predatory nature with our feelings. Personally I disagree with your implication that we humans are originally and essentially herbivores. I have no intention of justifying meat eating or opening up that debate here (because I don't want contention) but I do want to point out that we DO have canines in our jaws and claws on the ends of our fingers.

      The empathetic nature of feelings is not necessarily at odds with the painful facts of life either. But I too am repelled by the 'meat eating' you refer to.

      I do not glorify my 'woodsman' nature but that 'connection' seems real to me and as long as I have access to woodlands and the world of predators and predation I will find in myself a dual nature. . . One hard to take sides with. . . Easier to be on both sides.

      Paul G.

    2. Hi Paul
      "US predators"? Whether "we" believe ourselves superior or not, the fact remains we are still causing pain & death by hunting, meat eating, fishing, but in a million other ways too....rape, war, child trafficking.....
      I cannot cause pain to another creature Paul. Is there somerthing wrong with me?
      Aren´t the causes of all this cruelty the same? Isn´t indifference, ie the émotional numbing necessary to consume animal flesh, and turning a blind eye to how it is produced, also a function of neurosis, just as much as killing an animal with a gun?
      If we are natural predators,how do the millions of vegetarians in the world live, and live, according to all the evidence, much more healthily than meat eating humans? Why do so many humans now devote their lives to saving animals, whether to end factory farming, fishing, hunting, vivisection, or organic meat & dairy production? Why do so many of us cry, weep and feel pain for animals who hurt?
      And we do. So are we wrong? Should we be out there with our guns? Like "men"?
      Relevance? All your arguments are BELIEF. If you look out there, you find there are many, many people who are NOT predatorial by nature; vegetarians, animal communicators, conservationists, feminists. Men are CONDITIONED to be violators, to believe they have some of God given, or genetic right & need to kill, rape, bully, transgress others boundariies, to use force; Vietnam, Iraq, rape, woman beating, terrorising their own families....
      The canines in our jaws are canines in name only. They have little in common with true canines. Even our closest relatives, the bonobos, who consume at most 1% of their diet as insects, have much sharper canines than us. We do not have claws; we have nails.
      If we were carnivores, we would have stomach hydrochloric acid 10 times the concentration it is, MUCH shorter intestines to get rid of putrefying meat quickly, long pointed snouts, get excited at the sight and smell of the animals we eat, have the ability and desire to pursue and catch them with nothing but our bodies, and enjoy tearing and eating their bodies RAW with our bare hands and teeth, as well as the bonés, absolutely necessary for all carnivores, because without their alkaline forming minerals their diet would be so acid forming they would die.
      You think we evolved our large brains on meat? How did we catch and prepare it to make it palatable - it´s disgusting raw to our palates - without large brains in the first place? It takes intelligence to catch & cook meat, and in order to develop to that point we must have survived on the foods to which we are biologically attracted and designed to procure with ease; fruit & greens.
      Proof is in the pudding. I´ve been raw vegan for 14 years, and can assure you that everyone who follows this simple, natural diet gets better, from everything from cancer (currently afflicting 40% of people), arthritis, (99% to some degree), blood sugar disorders (90%), etc etc etc, coincidentally all of these conditions are almost completely unknown in the wild. Go figure. Gary

    3. Hi Gary,

      thanks for that. Today, the vet came to put down my bosses dog (Buzz, a large black stocky Labrador), he had serious arthritis and was in terrible pain. My boss buried him in the garden. I cried. I think my boss cried too, but being a 'man' and also responsible for the whole 'situation' (including my employment doing carpentry in one of his barns) he hid his tears and 'got on with life'. He was pretty stuffed all day and couldn't work much.

      I thought of you through my tears, as well as the enduring feeling of Buzz who had begun to come to me too for a cuddle and a nuzzle. It seems Buzz 'knew'. . . It was pretty quick, the difference between going for a (limping) walk yesterday and needing to be carried out for a piss this morning and then hiding under my bosses desk and refusing to come out. He 'knew'.

      Gary, absolutely nobody can 'argue' with your view and opinion. Even I agree with it. I try not to pick fights with other people's opinions and I try not to force feed mine to others either; of course being a very passionate person, at times I completely fail and rant and rave and preach my 'sermon' on the subject that gets me riled.

      I am always in awe of vegans and have tried many times to follow that path but like so many 'ordinary' people I find myself reverting back to old ways.

      I also pick up 'road kill' and stop to close farm gates.


      Paul G.

    4. Dear Paul
      Tears began to well up reading your message. I get triggered very easily by which I mean, in this case, I was thinking "He sounds different but is just the same as everyone else". And i am sorry
      I hurt to read of your bosses dog. A psychic friend of mine who is very honest & real tells me animals are psychic. My own research has persuaded me that animals do not want to die but that like us, they really only pass on to another dimension. This might sound like a defence against early feelings but the evidence is pretty compelling.
      My own dog Betty disappeared last November. We had lived loving each other so for 4 years, and I grieved for months afterwards. Then just a few weeks ago I found her again after 4 1/2 months, thin but well. She jumped straight into my arms
      Lots of love to you paul

  9. This morning I was pondering just this issue, and then saw a beautiful white cat aproaching me tentatively for food, taut with fear. Skip diving as usual, I fished her out some meat and gave it to her.
    Haven´t we come an incredibly long way in the last several million years as humans? We´ve come almost as far in that time from our natural humanity as its possible to get. Suddenly, the cat triggered a scene from the film "Born Free" a major primal film for me, in which the Adamsons took their beloved and fully grown lioness Elsa to the bush, and drove away, leaving her alone, because they felt they had no option but to release her into the wild. She chased them, thinking they were playing, By this time I was heaving, the tears flowing, curled up with pain.
    A week after dumping her in the bush, the Adamsons returned to find her, emaciated, starving, unable to hunt for herself.
    After I finished sobbing, I thought to myself "What the hell is the point of all those debate shows vin which educated people are discussing trivial things like cars or the economy or interest rates or fuck knows what, as if they are the important issues, whilst there are billions of children & animals in the world desperate in need of help?" Gary, Portugal

    1. Those economic issues are actually extremely important.

      Material wealth is not worth so much if you have enough, but when you don't you're looking at malnutrition and death in your 60's rather than 80's, etc.

      The third-world has seen incredible reduction in poverty rates, and in a few decades it will not even exist, because they have not been conned into believing that capitalism is evil (in itself). However the western world has been conned into believing this, which is a good thing because it has helped to create domestic policy settings which concentrates economic investment to where it is really needed - into the poor world.

      Worrying about feelings is ultimately a luxury for the rich. Feeding people comes first :)

    2. Hi Gary,
      Maybe this site is mostly about people, but when the people problem in fixed, everything else will fall into place, includng how we treat our children and animals.
      Gil Australia.

    3. Anonymous:

      The people problem is getting fixed. Population control is vital along with wealth development and social security. When we have a *sustainable* abundance of resources, it takes away the need for brutality (competition for resources), which I believe is the probable originating basis of neurosis.

      Problem is, as it seems to me, we're doing population control in a very messy and stressful manner. I made a video-article expressing my (controversial) view, if there's interest:

  10. Hi Gary,

    - dreams are a sleeping act out & act outs are a waking dream - . . .

    Paul G.

  11. Dear Art

    I am sad that hardly nobody want to acces their feelings. It is so simple and both complicated. All my life I have been pushed down to do not feel. My mother is taking medicine to decrease blood preasure and she does't understand reason why. My wife either do not want to listen to me and feelings. Dear Art it is so sad.


    1. Dear Piotr, it is indeed sad, but c'est la vie. art

    2. Piotr
      Every day I see people I call my friends rolling cigarettes, downing alcohol, taking medication for their hearts, and i think "Why should I say nothing? This is so crazy". Then when i do say something, however unaggressively, almost invariably I see in their eyes that they absolutely do not want to know. They do not want to know that what they are really doing is killing their pain. Perhaps some, further down the line when they get ill and really need help, will listen. That´s why the body signals its distress with pain. Gary

  12. Nice double reversal Paul, worthy of Art, but also worthy of Andrea Dworkin, R D Laing and many others. The point I´m making is the same as in the message to which you just responded; Primal Therapy can become a closed belief system in which everything is viewed on its own terms. Art warned of this when he wrote that there is a danger that Primal therapy can become a religion; the exact opposite of the free thinking, feeling based mind produced in Primal Therapy. Belief systems can only develop where there is no feeling, because when you completely feel yourself, you know that what you are feeling is the truth. And YET, it seems to me that ever more people are now thinking "outside the box" and even with no primal awareness are producing highly emotionally intelligent literature on a par with say, dare I say it, the great man himself. I´m referring to the current feminist resurgence, animal rights websites (highly recommend, etc.
    Because.....when you truly care, true intelligence gets activated. You start seeing things as they are; you have to. As you may by now be aware, I care deeply about animals. I exhort you to look thru Viva´s website ( and remember that the words you are reading, and the images you are seeing, are of animals who feel fear, terror, pain, love, sadness, grief, and have the same survival instincts as ourselves.
    This morning, I thought more on the cat theme of my last two emails. There is a scene in the film "Breakfast at Tiffanys" - a deeply powerful book on loss, grief and being lost to which, as usual, the film didn´t do justice - in whch Audrey Hepburn jumps out of a táxi in New York to rescue a cat in an alleyway in the pouring rain. You have to see the film to understand the symbolic significance. She holds it close and cries, as I cry now and as I wept this morning...I couldn´t stop....because all these cats I´m talking about are me, the me lost and all alone in the world, without a Mummy and Daddy to cuddle up to. I recently didn´t see them for 20 years, by choice. The separation is part of my pain now, the wilderness, the crushing goes back, and back. 36 years ago aged 18 I sat with my mother in an Oxford cafe, for the first time in my life leaving home for college, holding back the tears, because I was just a little boy needing her. And she knew. And 5 years on, back "at home", they threw me out when they discovered i was Gay. That was the final exile and it feels like my life went "on hold" at that point. REJECTION. The trauma which has ruled my life. Gary, Portugal

  13. "Since you can call anything your religious beliefs you are now free to do anything. Charming."
    "In the name of...."The father, the son and the holy ghost", Chairman Mao, Marx, The Fatherland; you fill in the blanks. Once you´ve got the primary, overwhelming FEELING inculcated in the toddler that S/HE is always wrong, even when s/he is 100% right, you have fértile soil for belief, and from there to control. "Go die for your country young man" The young man learned age 3 that he was always wrong and Daddy was always right, irrespective of the facts. Big Daddy Pentagon tells him to fight and he knows they´re right. And the doctors. And the teachers. And the meat and dairy bosses. He lost himself long ago. Gary, Portugal

  14. Moral guardians a result of unloving parents and teachers ... a way into the "kingdom of God"

    If you do not suffer any religion but still are victims of what moral values announce then you are a prisoner during the same process a religion preach... except that you live more suspiciously in only your own world of ideas... which in some ways is like God because we are only talking moral values in both cases... if any! Parents and teachers on one side and a deeper dive into the limbic system of inability to "hear" right about my own suffering... a god. But God is more threatening because involuntary sermons led us to dive deeper in to notions of faith... involuntary for being taught against what our own ability lived up to... and there we have a kaous of emotions that can take any path any time depending on what the social contact results in.

    God is "someone" I listen to for being someone else and that is a difference. I have constructed a cognitive figure for what a cold-hearted parent and teacher was threatening... it by "help" from preachers to listen to for what my limbic system leaking out of fear.


    1. Hi Frank,

      -"If you do not suffer any religion but still are victims of what moral values announce then you are a prisoner"-.

      -Of Pain-.

      Paul G.

    2. Hi Frank,
      -"a way into the "kingdom of God"-.

      -and flight from unmet need for and from Dad. . .

      Paul G.

    3. Yes... yes... yes!

      Being imprisoned when we're talking about primal therapy is to be imprisoned of pain!

      We are imprisoned in our chores before we can understand how it happened... that's why we do not experience it as pain... instead we are ashamed if we should claim it to be... ashamed... as are pain! We were told to do something to not suffer the pain of why. So when we do something... we EXPERIENCE ourselves not to suffer... and when we do not have anything to do... we suffer. We run anyone and what so ever ahead of ourselves to not suffer! If we lose the "grip" so we suffer "hell".

      When our brain evolved (to be connected) we were taught not to need anything our parents could not provide... that's how we became prisoners of pain.
      If we would have had loving parents so would the genetic cause of suffering not been beyond reach to heal... a thought to devoted little time.


  15. Overall... humans are a sick creature among all other living things!

    We are not in a position to do anything about it without the Primal therapeutic process... a process leading to the suffering feeling caused! How can we "hear" something of love as love comes from a disastrous limbic system... something that we want to keep as far away from us it is just possible?

    A chaos will never let anything that is perceived as being worse being something that will be heard... it as our symtoms holding the rod?

    But it is symptom that leads to the better only we could understand better... but understanding in that case is something that is contradictory to the caos!


  16. I don´t see well thought/felt out and researched opinions held by genuine truth seekers as harmful, but in our neurotic world, beliefs are overwhelmingly defences against pain - one way or another - and typically defended with aggression, often violence, sure signs of the neuroses underpinning them. As a fervent advocate of veganism and animal rights it is not just the unfeelingness towards animal agony & slaughter which depresses and appals me; it is also the irrationality used by the defenders of meat & fish eating. The truth doesn´t matter; the beliefs must be defended at all costs, (and of course the real cost is paid by animals). Case in point: Egyptologists are virtually unanimous in refusing to listen to modern archeologists claiming the Sphinx must be 10 - 15000 years old. They persist, despite all the evidence, to claim iti s less than 6000 years old. You see, almost all Egyptologists are Muslims, and according to the Koran, the Earth cannot be more than 6000 years old. A relatively benign example (?), but whose point is to warn of the dangers of neurosis driven belief, for example that babies must be schedule fed. Like so many basic beliefs, it is absurdly easy to shoot down. Just mention that no animal needs any advice on rearing its young. But as Art says, "neurosis is craziness". Gary

  17. Hi Gary,

    -"I don´t see well thought/felt out and researched opinions held by genuine truth seekers as harmful"-.

    Good. Me too.

    Paul G.

  18. Dear Art.,

    You have explained primal therapy thoroughly in your books. I have read one of your books ("The Primal scream") and I am at the beginning of another ("Primal Healing"). Yet, I still have 2 questions. I would appreciate it if you would answer them.

    1. After the therapy, what would be the difference between a person who has experienced affection and kindness in his or her childhood and one who has not?

    2. You have pointed out that only a healed person can be a therapist and have crossed out self-primalling. My question is, who healed you, or better, how you were healed.

    Many thanks in advance,

    Ali M.

    1. Ali, We cannot make an unloved child, damaged as he was into a loved child. That is magic not science. I speak for myself. I was damaged. I feel the loss of love but now I am not hindered so much by it that I cannot function. But of course I wish greatly that I had been loved. At least in my lifetime I could do something about it to soften the unconscious so I could get on with life. If I tell you who healed me you would be kids sat for me and then I became a patient and had regular therapy, waited in the waiting room like all other patients. Then my wife still sits for me. art

    2. Ive always wondered who "opened you up" Art, since we all need someone to do that? gary

    3. Gary: I became a patient like everyone else at my clinic. Sat in the waiting room and waited my turn. art

  19. An email comment (Part 1):
    "A Quick Test: If we were to describe our gods in detail, what we would have when we were finished is a detailed description of how we saw our parents when we were approximately five years old. God is simply a metaphor for our parents. As adults, our gods rule just like our parents ruled us when we were five years old. To a five year old, we see our parents as gods. They are almighty and they can make us or break us.

    Later, as we grow older and begin to realize that our parents aren’t the powerhouses we thought and needed them to be, we begin to transfer our five year old's perceptions of our parents onto god. In this way, we can continue to believe that there is someone powerful in our lives looking out for us.

    As believers go through school and become adults, many of them never fully mature because they remain dependent on their gods. That’s why you can’t have a mature conversation with a believer about religion. When the topic comes up, they argue from the position of a five year old. And to a five year old, facts are meaningless.

    Art, it took me three years to write a book in the hopes that it would sell enough so my wife and I could do at least a year of Primal Therapy. The book (an eBook) The Psychology of Creation: In the Beginning vs. Once Upon a Time, was self published last June. As of today, I've sold 4 copies.

    I satirized the first 25 chapters of Genesis. The book of Genesis has 50 chapters. I got so depressed, I could only get myself to satire half the book. Early on I wanted to send you a copy to see what you thought and, if you agreed with the gist of it, maybe you would write the foreword. However, I step on too many toes; so I haven't linked the book to anyone I care about.

    Here's a small sample of the book:

    In the Genesis chapters, my words are in (parentheses); everything else is word-for-word from the King James Version of the bible.

    Four examples:

    Genesis Chapter 1 Verse 26

    And God said, Let us make man in our image (apparently god is talking to his kind again), after our likeness (I guess the creating of the heaven and earth was more of a group project): and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea (whales aren’t fish), and over the fowl of the air (bats are mammals, not fowl—strike two), and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth (what about kangaroos?)."

  20. Part 2: "Genesis Chapter 2 Verse 7

    And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground (recapping once again; going into more detail about what god did on the sixth day), and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul (so god created everything else by just saying it, but when it came to man he used the three step method: 1. Gather some dust, making sure there’s enough for his arms, legs, and penis. 2. Make him in your image; close is good enough, nobody’s perfect. 3. Blow into his nose to activate).

    Genesis Chapter 3 Verse 9

    And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou (there’s only two people on god’s flat earth. He knows where they are. He watched the whole thing unfold. His timing is impeccable. He’s everywhere at the same time—except when you need him)?

    Genesis Chapter 3 Verse 12

    And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat (so Adam’s not taking responsibility for his decision to eat the fruit, and god’s not taking responsibility for setting all this in motion. If god can’t govern over two people, I can only imagine the fun he’s going to have when the population doubles).

    I read parts of Genesis when I was 26. I read the 1st page then skipped to the story of Noah's ark and read more. Because I felt incredibly betrayed/angry, I tore the book to shreds. After I calmed down, I thought that there must be a way to write about this nonsense in such a way that others could also see the nonsense.

    1. - The Prayer of Petition -

      Our Dad,
      Who's away at work all the time,
      Hello to you in name (because that's all we get of you).
      Your workplace will come (eventually),
      Your efforts will be rewarded (eventually),
      Here at home as well as at your workplace.

      Give us a day (of your time) Dad,
      Give us a crust to eat Dad,
      And forgive all the naughty things we do in your absence;
      After all, we at home are all forgiving aren't we?

      Help us show restraint Dad,
      And stop us from getting into trouble,
      For yours is the workplace,
      The Power Station & TV,

      For ever & ever,

      Our Man.

      Paul G.

  21. An email comment: "Thanks Art for the clearest message yet on this disgusting irrational and inhumane use of religion."

  22. Another email comment:
    "Plastic Ono Band/God
    (“I don’t believe in Jesus, I don’t believe in Kennedy, etc., I just believe in me”.)

    In an interview in 2000, about primal sessions with John Lennon in 1970, you are quoted to have said “people in pain usually seek out religion”. To that Lennon, according to you, answered, ”Oh, God is a concept with which we measure our pain”. If we go back 45 years, Lennon said: “Primal Therapy forced me to have done with the God shit… Most people channel their pain into God or masturbation or some dream of making it… Instead of facing up to the reality they always look for some kind of heaven.”

    John Lennon’s “THIS IS IT” about Primal Therapy was, according to Vivian Janov, something Lennon said about everything, for which he felt. Vivian reportedly said that, Art may have represented the new brilliant father he never had. (By the way Vivan was the therapist who, at a retreat in Bern, Switzerland, helped me understand, and to do something about that I was living, pain-imprisoned, in a neurotic relationship.)
    John Lennon was, within two years, back in the worst possible frame of mind, doing drugs, drinking. However, his interpretation of how imprinted pain propels all kinds of beliefs is, close to five decades later, still valid, not to say reinforced.

    It feels like an unsteady step when Art now in 2015, somewhat ironically (“charming”) fumbles among excuses with God, or different Gods, to cover up neurotic pleasures among people he knows. I don’t think that Art needs to channel his remaining imprinted pain into a God. However, he must, unconsciously, be influenced by the fact that he is living in a country, where so many minds are controlled by God and the Commandments. Based on scientific studies, I have mentioned a few times that 88% of the US population think that evolution should only be taught if the creationist (Book of Genesis) alternative is mentioned simultaneously.

    Every public speech by a president or official dignitary ends with “God Bless America”. In this way, they may consciously trigger the release of the hormone oxytocin in most of the listeners in order to reduce any national political disagreement within the American “family”. A recent president even used “God Bless America” to get a lie, to start a war, blessed.

    As to the title of your Reflection, “Who do we lie to when we tell ourselves not to do it”, I would mention “Thou shalt not lie” is missing among the commandments!!!


Review of "Beyond Belief"

This thought-provoking and important book shows how people are drawn toward dangerous beliefs.
“Belief can manifest itself in world-changing ways—and did, in some of history’s ugliest moments, from the rise of Adolf Hitler to the Jonestown mass suicide in 1979. Arthur Janov, a renowned psychologist who penned The Primal Scream, fearlessly tackles the subject of why and how strong believers willingly embrace even the most deranged leaders.
Beyond Belief begins with a lucid explanation of belief systems that, writes Janov, “are maps, something to help us navigate through life more effectively.” While belief systems are not presented as inherently bad, the author concentrates not just on why people adopt belief systems, but why “alienated individuals” in particular seek out “belief systems on the fringes.” The result is a book that is both illuminating and sobering. It explores, for example, how a strongly-held belief can lead radical Islamist jihadists to murder others in suicide acts. Janov writes, “I believe if people had more love in this life, they would not be so anxious to end it in favor of some imaginary existence.”
One of the most compelling aspects of Beyond Belief is the author’s liberal use of case studies, most of which are related in the first person by individuals whose lives were dramatically affected by their involvement in cults. These stories offer an exceptional perspective on the manner in which belief systems can take hold and shape one’s experiences. Joan’s tale, for instance, both engaging and disturbing, describes what it was like to join the Hare Krishnas. Even though she left the sect, observing that participants “are stunted in spiritual awareness,” Joan considers returning someday because “there’s a certain protection there.”
Janov’s great insight into cultish leaders is particularly interesting; he believes such people have had childhoods in which they were “rejected and unloved,” because “only unloved people want to become the wise man or woman (although it is usually male) imparting words of wisdom to others.” This is just one reason why Beyond Belief is such a thought-provoking, important book.”
Barry Silverstein, Freelance Writer

Quotes for "Life Before Birth"

“Life Before Birth is a thrilling journey of discovery, a real joy to read. Janov writes like no one else on the human mind—engaging, brilliant, passionate, and honest.
He is the best writer today on what makes us human—he shows us how the mind works, how it goes wrong, and how to put it right . . . He presents a brand-new approach to dealing with depression, emotional pain, anxiety, and addiction.”
Paul Thompson, PhD, Professor of Neurology, UCLA School of Medicine

Art Janov, one of the pioneers of fetal and early infant experiences and future mental health issues, offers a robust vision of how the earliest traumas of life can percolate through the brains, minds and lives of individuals. He focuses on both the shifting tides of brain emotional systems and the life-long consequences that can result, as well as the novel interventions, and clinical understanding, that need to be implemented in order to bring about the brain-mind changes that can restore affective equanimity. The transitions from feelings of persistent affective turmoil to psychological wholeness, requires both an understanding of the brain changes and a therapist that can work with the affective mind at primary-process levels. Life Before Birth, is a manifesto that provides a robust argument for increasing attention to the neuro-mental lives of fetuses and infants, and the widespread ramifications on mental health if we do not. Without an accurate developmental history of troubled minds, coordinated with a recognition of the primal emotional powers of the lowest ancestral regions of the human brain, therapists will be lost in their attempt to restore psychological balance.
Jaak Panksepp, Ph.D.
Bailey Endowed Chair of Animal Well Being Science
Washington State University

Dr. Janov’s essential insight—that our earliest experiences strongly influence later well being—is no longer in doubt. Thanks to advances in neuroscience, immunology, and epigenetics, we can now see some of the mechanisms of action at the heart of these developmental processes. His long-held belief that the brain, human development, and psychological well being need to studied in the context of evolution—from the brainstem up—now lies at the heart of the integration of neuroscience and psychotherapy.
Grounded in these two principles, Dr. Janov continues to explore the lifelong impact of prenatal, birth, and early experiences on our brains and minds. Simultaneously “old school” and revolutionary, he synthesizes traditional psychodynamic theories with cutting-edge science while consistently highlighting the limitations of a strict, “top-down” talking cure. Whether or not you agree with his philosophical assumptions, therapeutic practices, or theoretical conclusions, I promise you an interesting and thought-provoking journey.
Lou Cozolino, PsyD, Professor of Psychology, Pepperdine University

In Life Before Birth Dr. Arthur Janov illuminates the sources of much that happens during life after birth. Lucidly, the pioneer of primal therapy provides the scientific rationale for treatments that take us through our original, non-verbal memories—to essential depths of experience that the superficial cognitive-behavioral modalities currently in fashion cannot possibly touch, let alone transform.
Gabor Maté MD, author of In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction

An expansive analysis! This book attempts to explain the impact of critical developmental windows in the past, implores us to improve the lives of pregnant women in the present, and has implications for understanding our children, ourselves, and our collective future. I’m not sure whether primal therapy works or not, but it certainly deserves systematic testing in well-designed, assessor-blinded, randomized controlled clinical trials.
K.J.S. Anand, MBBS, D. Phil, FAACP, FCCM, FRCPCH, Professor of Pediatrics, Anesthesiology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, Senior Scholar, Center for Excellence in Faith and Health, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare System

A baby's brain grows more while in the womb than at any time in a child's life. Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script That Rules Our Lives is a valuable guide to creating healthier babies and offers insight into healing our early primal wounds. Dr. Janov integrates the most recent scientific research about prenatal development with the psychobiological reality that these early experiences do cast a long shadow over our entire lifespan. With a wealth of experience and a history of successful psychotherapeutic treatment, Dr. Janov is well positioned to speak with clarity and precision on a topic that remains critically important.
Paula Thomson, PsyD, Associate Professor, California State University, Northridge & Professor Emeritus, York University

"I am enthralled.
Dr. Janov has crafted a compelling and prophetic opus that could rightly dictate
PhD thesis topics for decades to come. Devoid of any "New Age" pseudoscience,
this work never strays from scientific orthodoxy and yet is perfectly accessible and
downright fascinating to any lay person interested in the mysteries of the human psyche."
Dr. Bernard Park, MD, MPH

His new book “Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script that Rules Our Lives” shows that primal therapy, the lower-brain therapeutic method popularized in the 1970’s international bestseller “Primal Scream” and his early work with John Lennon, may help alleviate depression and anxiety disorders, normalize blood pressure and serotonin levels, and improve the functioning of the immune system.
One of the book’s most intriguing theories is that fetal imprinting, an evolutionary strategy to prepare children to cope with life, establishes a permanent set-point in a child's physiology. Baby's born to mothers highly anxious during pregnancy, whether from war, natural disasters, failed marriages, or other stressful life conditions, may thus be prone to mental illness and brain dysfunction later in life. Early traumatic events such as low oxygen at birth, painkillers and antidepressants administered to the mother during pregnancy, poor maternal nutrition, and a lack of parental affection in the first years of life may compound the effect.
In making the case for a brand-new, unified field theory of psychotherapy, Dr. Janov weaves together the evolutionary theories of Jean Baptiste Larmarck, the fetal development studies of Vivette Glover and K.J.S. Anand, and fascinating new research by the psychiatrist Elissa Epel suggesting that telomeres—a region of repetitive DNA critical in predicting life expectancy—may be significantly altered during pregnancy.
After explaining how hormonal and neurologic processes in the womb provide a blueprint for later mental illness and disease, Dr. Janov charts a revolutionary new course for psychotherapy. He provides a sharp critique of cognitive behavioral therapy, psychoanalysis, and other popular “talk therapy” models for treating addiction and mental illness, which he argues do not reach the limbic system and brainstem, where the effects of early trauma are registered in the nervous system.
“Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script that Rules Our Lives” is scheduled to be published by NTI Upstream in October 2011, and has tremendous implications for the future of modern psychology, pediatrics, pregnancy, and women’s health.