It is by going down into the abyss
that we recover the treasures of life.
Where you stumble, there lies your treasure.
– Joseph Campbell
Struggle and Strength are often related. Stumbling is a part of life. Too
often we focus on the pain of falling and forget to learn the right lessons.
We become traumatized instead of gaining wisdom.
Pain is more bearable when you realize that others have endured even more
than you and come through better because of it. The Chrysalis seems
unbearable but it’s a crucial part to the future flight. Keep fighting, keep
kicking, a breakthrough is coming.
We’ve all seen movies like Limitless, Inception and Total Recall but what
if these weren’t just movies. What if it was really true? What if you could
actually reprogram your mind and change your reality? What if you could meet Morpheus in real life?
I did meet him and this is what happened to me when we spoke on the phone.
“Would your conscious mind be willing to learn from your unconscious mind
what the cause of the problem is ?” Dr. Wesley Morris asked.
“Yes.” I answered.
With that simple word I began a journey into my own mind.
I was guided on the journey by Dr. Wesley Morris and reached a moment in
the very distant past, felt like a previous lifetime, when I felt as though
I was being held down under water and drowning.
The strange thing is I was very calm even while drowning and did not feel
scared or fight back in any way. Another strange thing is that I could not
see anything. It was all an emotional feeling not a visual one. I think it
was the way my Subconscious mind saw the problem affecting me.
Lack of confidence was holding me down, I was drowning and not even
The process, which I later learned is called Timeline therapy,continued by
going even further back in time to a point before this traumatic experience.
It felt like it was way, way back ,in my case, maybe three lifetimes back.
We began to come back to the present but along the way I suddenly began to
get vivid images of an event that happened to me, in this lifetime. Some
years ago I was robbed while on a visit to Boston. I suddenly realized that
I could have fought back (I was doing Martial Arts at the time but I saw
myself not fighting but just shouting at my attacker while being willing to
fight and thereby dissuading him from attacking). My mind had reframed the
situation and was seeing new options.
Then we came back into the present. My subconscious and conscious mind both
agreed that I needed to be more assertive and fight back when necessary
rather than be passive. I then progressed on the Timeline in my mind to the
future and saw myself handling situations in a more assertive and confident
manner. Dr. Morris then brought me back into the present with a newfound
perspective on Life.
I felt great and we spoke for awhile. At one point Dr. Morris pointed out
to me that I was speaking more confidently already and I laughed. It was
true, I was already speaking clearly and fluently instead of my low-key tone
that had become customary. I told him some of the reasons why I’d always
been interested in psychology and NLP in particular. I discussed some of the
other challenges I was experiencing in my life.
Dr. Wesley Morris demonstrated the technique to me again.
This time he asked ” What problem are you facing in life now, you don’t
even have to tell me what it is write it on a paper near you. ”
I scribbled “Money” on a paper, meaning that lack of money seemed to be a
recurring decimal that was holding me back.
He then asked “Would your conscious mind be willing to learn from your
unconscious mind what the cause for the problem is?”
Again he guided me back in time, in a journey in my mind to a traumatic
event related to my concern, my lack of money.
To my surprise, maybe because I was getting the hang of it, or maybe
because my feelings related to money had a more recent cause, the results
were even clearer and more immediate than before.
I remembered a time, years ago, when I had substantial savings in a bank
and unfortunately that bank collapsed and I now realised that in doing so it
has shaped my attitude towards accumulation of wealth. For the last several
years I had considered it futile to strive after material wealth and had
little interest in financial planning. It sounds simple but it was a major
insight for me I had not even thought of this event for years.
Again Dr. Morris guided me to a time before the event when I was untouched
by trauma and then we reframed what happened and learnt lessons that could
help me in the future. I saw myself losing all my money again in the future
but this time reacting differently. I’d be able to calmly build back my
financial holdings. He brought me back to the present with new insight into
my problem and more importantly how to solve it. I had replaced a sense of
Futility with one of Enterprise. I could now Think Positively and Grow Rich.
Money comes and money goes but we can always build and get it back.
Dr. Wesley Morris used NLP to reprogram my brain. He did this over the
phone. His office is in Kingston Jamaica. You can find more information
about him and the innovative techniques he uses at his website
Now I’m a magnet for the ladies, I attract Success, I’m more confident,
more energetic, happier, smarter and winning more at chess. I’ve replaced a
passive and pessimistic mindset, that’s been holding me back, drowning me,
one which felt the accumulation of Money was Futile, with a sense of
Enterprise. My fears still exist but they are now spurs to action and
improvement, motivators as I Build.
Dream my friends, Dream big for they do come true !
Sometimes I feel like I’m talking to myself because no one seems to understand what I’m saying, but other times I feel like I’m talking to myself because people say exactly what I’ve thought before.
In the first case people are usually totally bored and think you’re stupid because they really can’t quite follow what you’re saying or it does not seem important or true to them.
It’s like you’re speaking an Alien language. When this happens to you a lot it can either mean you’re crazy or you’re a genius.This happened to me so much that I decided to just call my personal alien language “Voynich”.Of course I believe I’m a Genius. Some close friends say I’m just slightly “off my rocker”.
How many people do you think enjoyed chatting with Einstein about what it would be like to be “sitting on a lightbeam” ? How many sailors do you think were wondering what kind of brew Columbus was drinking when he first tried to convince them that the world was really round ?
The second type of “talking to yourself ” is even more fascinating. In this scenario people are now quite excited to talk to you about some idea, they find amazing and novel, but while they are expressing it your eyes are the ones that might just glaze over because they are merely telling you something you already knew. They’re speaking to you with your own “voice”.
Years ago I said on a personal website that “Chess is the Martial Art of the Mind.” People in Jamaica were silent or a few just snickered. Chess has no similarity to Martial Arts, I’ve never heard that before, this guy is crazy, they all thought.
I was already being called the Chess Ninja by a few who knew my personal theories of the game, they thought it was an insult or a joke. I didn’t mind the name though and considered it a badge of honour because I understood that I was merely speaking Voynich to them. They could not understand. My site was called Chess Ninjas Dojo and I couldn’t even get the local chess federation to put a link to my site.
Someone who worked with Kasparov, the world’s best chess player at the time, came upon my website. He wrote me telling me he was very impressed by my site. He put a link for my site on Kasparov’s site. Kasparov’s site was the most popular chess site in the world at that time.
Strangely, it seemed that the World understood Voynich.
This man who worked for Kasparov later launched a website entitled http://www.chessninja.com . Chessninja.com became one of the world’s most popular chess sites. It is built on the concept of teaching chess like a martial art.
Now fast forward into 2010 and one of the most popular chess videos features Jamaican born grandmaster Maurice Ashley. In this video he promises to teach the secrets of chess.
Grandmaster Ashley makes a startling statement in the video “Chess is Intellectual Karate”. He is telling me my own idea. It’s like I am speaking to myself. My eyes glaze over. The world Applauds. It’s a standing ovation.
Remember this the next time someone says you’re crazy or they can’t understand. You’re possibly just speaking Voynich. One day the world will applaud and perhaps even beat a path to your door.
Indeed while it is true that nothing can stop an idea whose time has come, it is also very true that big ideas will most likely be questioned and rejected, then perhaps ridiculed and worst of all… be ignored… long before some latter-day champion , like Newton, “stands on the shoulders of Giants” and the ideas then become accepted as brilliant and then later on they’re considered obvious.
Jamaican politics is said to be “a struggle for scarce benefits carried on between hostile tribes perpetually at war”. Tribes are not always political though. They can be religions and those they disagree with may even call them cults. Tribes can also be a powerful economic and social force.
“Since the dawn of civilization people have formed tribes, and research demonstrates that humans are genetically programmed to form into groups. Within every company there are tribes, often several, consisting of 20 to 150 people who know each other and work together. But while everyone tribes, the culture of each tribe is different, as is its effectiveness. Improving a tribe’s culture—and its chances for greater success—requires a tribal leader who not only understands the tribe but can leverage its collective assets to build a greater team.”
That quote is taken from a website promoting a book called “Tribal Leadership”.
Some believe buying such a book is a waste of time since they feel that a Tribal Leader cannot be trained or created but is a natural, a charismatic personality,someone great that spontaneously arises when the right conditions present themselves.
Obama used a “grass-roots” strategy, with the simple “snowball effect” idea of building ever-enlarging tribes, to reach the White House. His strategy was flawless but his Personal Charisma is also undeniable.
On a more intimate level Mystery, a world famous Pick-Up Artist (PUA), a master of seduction, actually encourages his students to become “Tribal Leaders” because he says all women are biologically hardwired to respond most strongly to these “Alpha Male” types.
Mystery believes that the Charisma comes from having the leadership position. This is contrary to the commonly held view that Leadership is attained by the one who exudes charisma.
Mystery says that, in the “Game of Seduction” at least, once you display qualities of Leadership, once you display “Social Proof”, you automatically become attractive.
This might also help explain people, such as Hitler, who possessed incredible public speaking Charisma yet were awkward in a personal setting. With a carefully crafted stage presence, with many symbols of Power, they can create a type of Charisma.
Obama said, at the largest gathering of Native American Tribal Leaders, last year, “Treaties were violated,Promises were broken. You were told your lands, your religion, your cultures, your languages were not yours to keep.”
Civilization has not always been kind to Tribes. Ask Chief Seattle. Ask Africa.
Given the past, Obama said he wouldn’t have been surprised if the leaders hadn’t come, saying it showed “an extraordinary leap of faith.” Sitting at a table on stage in the Interior auditorium last year, Obama signed a memorandum directing all federal agencies to develop within 90 days a plan to improve tribal consultation. “These are challenges we can only face by working together,” he said.
Obama is clearly not just Charismatic but also an extraordinary leader in his strategic ability to create consensus, be authentic, visionary and inclusive.
Daniel Quinn believes the future will once again belong to tribes. In his books he argues that Modern Civilization is not working and to survive it must revert to what works…Tribes.
You may not have Obama’s leadership abilities but you can still shape the future by deciding which tribes you belong to.
According to marketing guru Seth Godin, modern technology has made it even easier for us to form into tribes and these tribes can now easily become Global, because of the Internet.
Seth Godin outlines the following principles for aspiring Tribal Leaders;
Firstly, Create a change, a meaningful Tribe will in some way challenge the status quo. It will seek to improve conditions.
Secondly, Tribes develop their unique culture: “A secret language, a 7-second handshake, a way of knowing whether you are in or you are out.”
Thirdly, tribes have curiosity: “about the people in the tribe, and about outsiders.”
Fourthly, the Tribe fosters Connection to each other. They allow people to achieve what they want more than anything else….to be missed ! If someone isn’t there other tribe members should notice and miss them.
Seth Godin agrees with Mystery in the end because he says “All tribal leaders have charisma. BUT, you do not need charisma to be a tribal leader. Leading a tribe gives you charisma. If you look and study the leaders throughout history, you will see where the charisma comes from. It comes from the leading.”
Finally Great tribes Commit: They commit to the cause, they commit to the tribe, they commit to the people.
Become a Tribal Leader !
This strange, hump-backed, looking fellow is Harvey Pekar and he’s actually one of my heroes.
Harvey Pekar really loved collecting stuff. At one point he collected comic books and then later on he began to collect rare Jazz records.
This somewhat obscure hobby led him to meet Robert Crumb. Crumb had a love of rare Jazz music also. Crumb was also beginning to become well known as an underground comic book artist. Crumb’s adult-themed art work impressed the normally cynical Pekar.
Through reading his friend’s material Pekar began to realize the immense untapped potential of the whole comic book medium. Sure the medium had it’s full range of masked superheroes but Pekar felt there was a huge range of stories still waiting to be told.
“Comics could do anything that film could do,” Pekar realized. “And I wanted in on it.” he said. However it took Pekar some time to decide just what he wanted to do. “I theorized for maybe ten years about doing comics,” he says.
Pekar laid out some stories with crude stick figures and showed them to Crumb. Crumb became the first artist to illustrate American Splendor.
American Splendor was a groundbreaking series of Comic Books. The comic documents daily life in the aging neighborhoods of Pekar’s native Cleveland, where Pekar worked throughout his life (even after gaining fame) as a file clerk in a large Veterans Administration hospital.
American Splendor basically chronicles all the everyday events of Harvey who is a kind of everyman character. Ordinary life is pretty complex stuff seems to be the basic theme.
It’s laced with a realism and subtle humor that reminds me of Woody Allen or Seinfeld at their best.
Pekar gets material from anything at all. For this reason I think bloggers (especially those that write about anything like my Blogfather Madbull) will really enjoy learning more about him and his work.
For example Pekar would write about things like “How do you pick the best line to join while waiting at the Supermarket ?” or he might ponder his own name and write about what happened when he looks up his own name in the directory (and who hasn’t done that ?).
More poignantly though he wrote about his personal battles with Cancer. Later on as he got famous and appeared extensively on popular shows like Letterman’s Late Night Show he wrote about that new found fame also.
A recent movie about his life presents an easy way to learn about him. In the movie entitled “American Splendor”, Pekar finds love, family and a creative voice through the underground comic books he creates. Along the bumpy journey, he meets, marries and falls for Joyce, an admiring comic book seller.
The movie also shows the real life Harvey and his friends in some revealing snippets that enrich the heart-warming film. Be warned this film may even make you cry at a few points and will certainly make you laugh at many points.
It gets my highest recommendation, when you see the story of my hero Harvey you will be inspired too and you’ll realize it’s really a Splenderously Crumby World, full of Unexpected Possibilities.
Recently I saw that Michael Jordan was inducted into the Hall of Fame for Basketball. Unfortunately I read Yahoo Sports Writer Adrian Wojnarowski
and he said Jordan had turned the momentous and historic occasion into a vicious and vapid attack, like a bully tripping the nerds of his past.
Fortunately I saw the video of Michael Jordan’s Induction speech for myself on Youtube and while it’s true that he recounted many bad experiences of his past, I think that the speech overall was great and hugely inspiring.
In my opinion Michael Wilbon wrote a more accurate view than that of Adrian Wojnarowski, but opinions will differ.
For me it was an incredibly frank speech and definitely straight from the heart. The tears were flowing copiously before he even began.
Michael Jordan has been criticized in the past for having an image that was too commercial and over managed. “Not politically savvy” and “not real enough” said some critics formerly. Now when they get Michael talking straight from the heart he’s again criticized for not being graceful or not sanitized enough.
I like the “Unplugged” Jordan a lot, the passion and the intensity and the competitive spirit are what made him a great player, possibly the greatest ever. That’s what Michael Jordan demonstrated in his speech.
He recounted a whole slew of obstacles but the purpose was to show that he used these things as motivation to get better. He said the competitive Fire forged in him by his family was the key to his success and then he described each of these obstacles he overcame as more wood to the fire. Without this wood he would not have become great.
Seeing the speech for myself I didn’t get a sense of bitterness or arrogance at all, he was actually just explaining the key to his success and for that this fan is very grateful.
His closing line “Limits, like fears are often an Illusion” was very powerful.
As for his critics, well folks they’re just going to be more wood for the Fire. MJ , “his Airness” will probably be playing somewhere at age 50 and I wouldn’t bet against him.
Jamaica’s leading DJs have sparked an international feud over which is better Gaza or Gully.
The battle has even reached to the real Gaza and various parts of Africa but this is certainly not the first or even the biggest lyrical battle ever.
I’m old school. I remember rap back in the days before Lil Kim, before Salt_N-Pepa and even before Queen Latifah. In those early days of Rap music there was really only one woman worth mentioning and her name was Roxanne. She was so pretty and talented in fact that you called her name twice and the song about her called “Roxanne, Roxanne” by UTFO was a smash hit. It spoke of a lady who was refusing their advances.
Roxanne Shante’ (birthname Lolita Gooden) made what we’d call the “counter action” song “Roxanne’s Revenge” which also became a hit for the teenage singing sensation.The single was released in late 1984, taking the original beats from an instrumental version of “Roxanne, Roxanne.” It was very confrontational and vulgar, but was an instant hit that sold over 250,000 copies in the New York area alone. Legal action followed, and it was re-released in early 1985 with new beats and the obscenities removed.
A series of Roxanne songs then came out in fact it may be the longest running series of Answer records in history according to Wikipedia. Check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roxanne_Wars
for a list of the various songs in the Roxanne Wars.
There was even another woman who did a song calling herself “The Real Roxanne”.
However for Roxanne Shante’ after two albums she became disillusioned by the cut throat music business and as a teen age mom she felt swindled.
When she was around 19 she suddenly remembered a “throwaway clause” in her contract had said that the company that signed her would fund her education for life.
Amazingly the teenage mom who had felt tricked and cheated turned the tables on the whole music game and earned her PhD. in Psychology and made the label foot the bill.
Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons said Shante is now a shining role model for the rap community. “Dr. Shante’s life is inspiring,” Simmons said. “She was a go-getter who rose from the struggle and went from hustling to teaching. She is a prime example that you can do anything, and everything is possible.”
Shante, 38, is now active in the community. She offers $5,000 college scholarships each semester to female rappers through the nonprofit Hip Hop Association.
This blog is partly based on the story Rapper behind ‘Roxanne’s Revenge’ gets Warner Music to pay for Ph.D by Walter Dawkins please read it.
Those two words found themselves into the top ten search words on Yahoo on August 11,2009.
While others debate who the King of the dancehall really is, Sean Paul made an Imperial statement the way only he can. With his new album entitled “Imperial Blaze” about to drop he looks set to score big yet again.
Everything is right. Everything. Everything from the new blazing orange logo, which seems like a variation of the fleur-de-lys, the suave almost hispanic pretty boy looks, the stylish clothes, the intelligent interviews (http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/music/a162014/sean-paul.html), his personal continually updated website http://www.allseanpaul.com/ with new appearances on You Tube and MTV.
Although he appeared on Jamaican televison telling consumers to avoid pirated CDs, in my personal opinion he is actually one of the first major players who seems to realize the real power of piracy and the net. It is a highly effecient distribution method. This time around Sean Paul’s team has cleverly found a way to incorporate free downloads into their media blitz.
The summer is gonna be Scorching Hot, there’s gonna be a worldwide bonfire, an Imperial Blaze and before it’s all over you are not going to even remember who was fighting about being King of the Dancehall. All you’re gonna be talking about is …
Are you Man Enough ?
Can you Resist ?
The quest for high perfomance enhancers seems to be never ending and widespread. While athletes have long been accused of taking steroids and testosterone and even “horse tonic” to run faster and longer, now the general public is following suit and digesting record amounts of so- called Energy Drinks.
The Great Coca Cola perhaps started the trend with their famous secret formula. Now every drink is boasting some secret and potent additive that will boost the drinkers performance. Coca Cola’s name actually comes from the Cocaine and the Kola Nut (containing Caffiene), the key ingredients, in it’s original formulation. It was sold at pharmacies back then and it’s creator Pemberton claimed that Coca-Cola cured many diseases, including morphine addiction, dyspepsia, neurasthenia, headache, and yes even impotence.
The local energy drinks are also focusing on the sexual shortcomings in the market place and have names like Taboo, Mandingo and Jagra which one blogger assumes means “JamaicanViagra”. They should do well in a culture that already traditionally has Roots drinks with exotic names like “Front End Lifter”. Red Bull, the German drink, with the English name, and Monster also have a strong local following.
Personally I’m inclined to think these products are all a bunch of Mumbo Jumbo though. However I guess if you think they’ll help you then they will. Placebos have been known to effect great cures. Who am I to knock someone trying to uplift their spirits before taking an All Night Exam Study Session ?
Interestingly the words Mumbo Jumbo and Jagra and Mandingo are related. See for example this quote taken from a blog on the net;
You will be the hit of the cocktail party when you hold forth on the origins of the word “Mumbo Jumbo,” which is a botched transliteration of the name of a Mandingo secret society. The account originated with the 18th century explorer of Africa Francis Moore, who wrote that the all-male society, bound by terrible oaths, existed primarily to adjudicate disputes between men and women… in favor of men. So how did Moore find out about this “secret” group?
About the year 1727, the king of Jagra having a very inquisitive woman to his wife, was so weak as to disclose to her this secret; and she being a gossip, revealed it to some other women of her acquaintance. This at last coming to the ears of some who were no friends to the king, they, dreading lest if the affair took vent, it should put a period to the subjection of their wives, took the coat, put a man into it, and going to the king’s town, sent for him out, and taxed him with it: when he not denying it, they sent for his wife, and killed them both on the spot. Thus the poor king died for his complaisance to his wife, and she for her curiosity.
The first rule of Mumbo Jumbo is DON’T TALK ABOUT MUMBO JUMBO!
As someone who is addicted to Pepsi I hope you will avoid my weakness. I hope you’ll be Mandingo enough to avoid these Energy Drinks and stay healthy with some less addictive natural Juices.
Are you Man Enough ?
Dora the Explorer, the famous Nickelodeon cartoon character, is growing up, and while many fear this is happening too quickly, I think it’s inevitable.
Dora the Teen will be able to impart life lessons to those at the very impressionable and important Teen Age stage of their lives.
But will the trend to grow this booming Dora Industry really stop there ?
Dora is praised for being very educational for kids but we adults can also learn a few lessons from her cartoons.
Dora for Adults will no doubt contain the following lessons;
Always walk with your Boots.
Boots is Dora’s best friend in fact Dora is never seen without Boots.
Swiper, No Swiping
For those parents who buy every new Dora product please take heed, the second lesson, from Dora for Adults, is that when using a Credit card, on a low paying salary, it’s best to follow the catch phrase “Swiper, No Swiping”. Use cash to stay within your means or better yet just teach your kids that “No means No”.
This lesson and catch phrase will also come in handy as Dora grows up and begins to face the unwanted attentions of peers and even sick depraved adults.
“No means No”
No matter how far they push the dress code in these cartoons let’s just hope that viewers get the key message and remember always that “No means No”.
Rivalry seems ubiquitous. Pepsi or Coke ? JLP or PNP ? Cobra or Mongoose ?
In all spheres of life there are competitions and the human mind strives to place things in order. Who is the Best ? Who is the greatest ?
A sports radio station ,locally, has endless debates about which football (soccer) player is better, Maradona or Pele ? The fact that the men played in completely different eras and positions has little effect on slowing the debates. Grown men actually spend the whole day arguing both sides of the issue as if they actually expect to convince their rivals to change their views.
Blessed are the few wise enough never to argue about Politics or Religion. Revealing your loyalties in these areas can often lose you a few so-called friends and create serious enemies. The arguments never change anyone’s views anyhow.
One long standing rivalry is taking a new turn though. For years the media has compared Michael Jackson to Prince and Jackson usually comes out ahead thanks to the phenomenal success of his Quincy Jones produced Thriller album.
Interestingly though with the successful release of his LotusFlow3r album Prince now outstrips Michael Jackson in terms of having top ten albums. This includes albums released by Jackson with his brothers. An amazing achievement.
That is the real power of rivalry, it spurs both rivals to greater heights and it excites the fan base, it actually expands the market for both competitors.
When Fifty Cent entered a “beef” with Kanye West it helped them both break new sales records.
Sampras made Agassi a fortune in endorsements even when he lost tennis matches.
Would Muhamad Ali be called the greatest without Joe Frasier ? Where would Beenie Man be without Bounty Killer ?
Rivals keep us on our toes. A key part of winning, mentally, is that even whenyour rivals are actually out of the picture you still act as if they are breathing down your neck.
If you don’t have an enemy you’re possibly not really trying to do anything really worthwhile.
Pepsi is the best thing that ever happened to Coke. Success is inevitable, we compete only with ourselves.
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