Tag Archives: Powerful Mind

Updating Your Life Plan

Welcome to this week’s Bill Harvey Blog, June 28, 2024
Powerful Mind Part 30 – Created September 29, 2023

Mountain road. Landscape with green field, sunny sky

“Comedian George Carlin once quipped, ‘Oh, you hate your job? Why didn’t you say so? There’s a support group for that. It’s called EVERYBODY, and they meet at the bar.’” This is a quote from a Gallup report finding that 60% of workers are dissatisfied with the work they are doing.

The pandemic gave us the space we needed to realize that we were not getting enough satisfaction out of the life we were living, and a person’s work is central to a person’s life – “Lieber Und Arbeit” (Love And Work) as Freud put it – the two key tentpoles (which in my book You Are The Universe I show is actually the bottom of the Tree Of Life in Kabbalah).

But even before the pandemic many of us already knew that we had placed ourselves in the wrong spot, maybe even the wrong line of work. The education system has not prepared us to know what our true gifts to the world are, the passion work that would keep us in the Flow state more often. For some time I’ve been recommending individualized education, to bring out the best in each of us, and to know the occupational optimization answers for each of us. Ironic that the Latin word educare means “to draw out” and yet our education systems around the world pound information in rather than draw anything out.

I’ve also written about work study internships for a day starting at very early ages, maybe as early as seven years old, where kids can pick and choose which of the participating companies and departments they would like to try out for a day.

Since the pandemic, tens of millions of people around the world have been contemplating changes in their lives, focused especially around the kind of work they do, and where and how they do it. A big part of it is not the occupation itself but the culture of the company. Too many companies treat employees as expendable cogs and not as partners and allies. If AI were used to enable the whole personnel of a company to insert anonymous or otherwise ideas and suggestions with true protections against repercussions (today’s HR departments promise that but do not deliver it often enough), and if the C suite got continuous AI summaries a maximum of 25 words per hour 9-5, the C suite might realize that the wisdom bubbling up is unbelievably brilliant and right. Global consultant Chaim Oren and I discuss these points in this podcast: How to Thrive in the Age of Crisis.

How to thrive in the age of crisis - a guide for life
Be sure you know what work YOU want to do, and that it isn’t someone else who caused you to believe you wanted that. Then make a plan to get from where you are to that work. Consider the moves carefully so as not to waste the goodwill you have built up in the field in which you have been working. Don’t leave people in a bad place by abruptly pulling out, take care of the people and company you now serve, as you make your transition. If you do it that way, some of them may help you get to where you want to be. maybe there are ways to intersperse what you now do with elements of what you want to be doing. This is a great testbed for early learning.

This will take time so you mustn’t add to your existing stress by becoming discouraged at how it seems Sisyphean and that you’ll never get there. Here’s the key trick: life is an adventure. You may have lost that sense of adventure before, perhaps long ago and without realizing it. But now that you have taken control of your own life and are steering it toward making your true dreams come true, you must sit back and become grateful for this big second chance you have given yourself, and that however it comes out, you are at least going to enjoy the adventure, the true adventure of your life as it was always meant to be, now that you have the real target in your sights. You are going to enjoy getting there even if you never do get all the way there!

Remind yourself of this every time you feel dissatisfaction returning. Like all negative emotion, that is just an alarm reaction designed to wake you up to some threat vector. Turn off the emotional alarm, thanking it for ringing, and set to learning whatever lesson has to be learned so that the source of that dissatisfaction may be reasonably solved to no longer cause you negativity.

This means that while you are on the adventurous path to your new life, no matter what happens, failure, censure, whatever, it isn’t going to get you down. You are at least pursuing your passion work, that’s what matters, and enjoy each second of the journey by learning from what appear to be signs that you will never attain your dreams. The outcomes are not the point. The pursuit is the point, as long as what you pursue is the highest use of the real you to the species and to the universe, in your own lights.

Remember that what you feel projects out and makes impressions that change the “external” world, so that the more quickly you turn off your own negativity, and keep envisioning (“predreaming”) the life scenario you want, the more likely you are to achieve it all. But beware of the trap of caring too much about the outcomes. Do what you can to obtain the outcomes you want, and let the chips fall where they may, and use negative feedback to refine your methods but not bring you down.

Key #6

Be sure of what YOU want and enjoy the journey to your dreams,
without attachment to outcomes.

Here’s a little secret: Dissatisfaction is wrong predreaming, it brings you what you don’t want to happen.

Attachment to outcomes is a misunderstanding. It’s ego. It’s the need to prove yourself to other people, belonging, status/prestige, wealth/success, all those lower motivations that you were conditioned to be needy about. The established psychological principle of Yerkes-Dodson obtains: highest performance comes when there is just the right amount of desire to win, and performance falls off sharply when there is too much attachment to the outcome.

Enjoy the adventure!

Love,
Bill

 

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Inner Visibility: See Your BioAI, See Your Muse

Welcome to this week’s Bill Harvey Blog, June 21, 2024
Powerful Mind Part 44 Created January 12, 2024

Inner Visibility: See Your BioAI, See Your Muse

You may say “That’s easier said than done,” wherever in my writings you come across my exhortations to light up your inside, pay more attention to what’s going on inside you, and other phrases of that ilk. I agree. One cannot simply decide to have more inner visibility, one needs specific mental methods to bring that about.

We’ve already discussed some of these methods. Parking the body in a comfortable position where in time it can disappear from your radar. With your eyes closed, watching to see the very beginning of a feeling or thought arising. Being aware of procrastination and going in circles. Daily Alone Space. Mindquiet, thinking without words. Last thoughts before sleep. Conducting your own inner orchestra. And many methods so far in this book Powerful Mind being serialized here.

A visual image – kind of a mind map – is another type of method. Imagine that you are in bed, in an especially comfortable position, nothing about your body feels uncomfortable to you. Your eyes are closed and your breaths are slow and deep. Your mind appears to you in a visual image. In that visual image, you can see that you are composed of an outer bubble, containing two side-by-side inner bubbles, one in front of you on the left, and one in front of you on the right. The essence of who you are, The Experiencer, is what is seeing this, so it itself is not seen in the picture. You look out from your position as The Experiencer.

The bounds of the outer bubble are unknown. The outer bubble when your eyes are open extends as far as your eyes can see, your ears can hear, your nose can smell. The outer bubble is your entire consciousness, and for all you know, may be coexistent with the entire consciousness of the universe, as your present sensory abilities may not tell the whole story.
The bubble ahead of you within the outer bubble on your left is your BioAI, what we have called the robot. It is constantly making suggestions based on calculations, predictions based on all prior stored experiences.

The bubble ahead of you within the outer bubble on the right is your Muse or Master voice, the place from which comes your revelations, inspirations, moments of extreme clarity, mental Flow state, Eureka moments, Aha! moments, the ideas that suddenly pop in and startle you by their insight and their ring of truth.

This image can help remind you to be aware of the provenance of each thought, feeling, and impulse arising within you – is this more imitative babble from the BioAI or is this the Muse.

Alas, at the beginning of such a journey, if you are to be real with yourself – the journey is pointless if you are not going to be real with yourself – you will experience that most of what you allow your most precious asset, your mind, to spend its time on, is babble from the BioAI. The good news is that over time the methods will shift your time allocation substantially over to receiving from the Muse, with a great reduction of time spent and actions taken based on the forecasts of the BioAI.

You may ask, what is the Muse? Is it your own subconscious, or is it actually some helpful invisible being, or is it The One Being that is the entire conscious Universe? Science is not yet able to answer that with high confidence. Someday (my personal conviction) science shall be able to establish what the true answer is. Until then, one must accept not knowing the answer, while still obtaining the pragmatic benefits of receiving suggestions from the Muse and giving them the proper respect and cautious trial in external world interactions.

This image is a tool to be used but is not intended to depict reality itself. In reality, there will be many useful thoughts you think which are not readily classifiable into BioAI or Muse, and in fact, trying to reduce all experiences to two pigeonholes is itself robotic oversimplification – the dodge the BioAI uses to deal with excess complexity – reductionistic oversimplification and dichotomania. What we have called Emergency Oversimplification Procedure (EOP).

Instead, this visualization tool is aimed at noticing evidence of the presence of one or the other of these extreme cases – robotic impulses or flashes of brilliance.

The BioAI, thousands of years ago when the world was far simpler for human beings to deal with, was undoubtedly a very valuable “extra sense” to have. In the complicated civilization rocketing ahead with new changes day to day, the BioAI adapted as best it could, but was outclassed by the challenge slope, as it has moved from climbing a one-degree slope, toward a practically vertical one.

Acceleration of complexity is not the only aspect of our civilization which has strained the BioAI. The type of civilization we have evolved is hierarchical, competitive, and disadvantageous to most Earth homo sapient natives, advantageous to a lucky few. Some of us resonate with the idea of leveling the playing field, and some of us resonate with the game as it has been played for millennia. These philosophical differences have always been manipulated to serve the self-interest of powerful individuals and groups. As a result of complexity acceleration (“Acceleritis”) and these other conditions, the new individual entering this world is likely to experience one or more traumas early in life. These traumas can alter the functioning of the BioAI, predisposing it into an assumed permanent defensive posture which is so ever-present as to become invisible to that person.

We define defensive ego behavior as a predispositional wound syndrome of the BioAI. In many people, the BioAI acts as if that individual is coming from behind, and in one way or another, seeks to catch up. This might involve calling attention to one’s accomplishments or best qualities, taking offense at not being properly credited, chronic envy causing dislike, racing always to get more things done faster, which can cause bodily tensions the individual is so used to they are almost invisible to the conscious mind.

In that latter category, check your body right now, and from time to time throughout each day, to find where you are holding yourself tight and to focus on relaxing those places. Let your shoulders relax down and out, stop causing your breath to be shallow. You are not in a race against the clock (most of the time) so let yourself slow down to enjoy whatever puzzle it is you are in the midst of solving. Put distracting ideas on notes and put them off to the side to thoroughly engage with one thing at a time and enjoy perfecting that one thing. Then organize and schedule the notes for consideration, being very conservative about how much you plan to accomplish in any one day. Leave room for all the surprise requirements that show up on the average day. And for frequent breaks which increase the probability of Flow state (merging with the Muse).

Studying myself through the lens of these mental methods, I find that my original traumatic wound to my BioAI was early heartbreak at my own incompetence at almost everything. My BioAI adjusted to this by doubting myself, even after achieving competency at some things. This insight was obtained through the use of the bubbles imagery outlined above.

The scientistic mood of the present culture is part of the EOP reductionism. Because we don’t “need” God to explain the things we see and measure around us, this permits us to bias our studies toward assumption of materialistic accidentalism. We may not “need” to explain the universe as a single consciousness, but that does not mean that the universe might not in reality be a single consciousness.

It’s best to be open-minded about things that have not been proven yet one way or the other. That includes the possibility that you are a point of view of the universe – “nobly born” as put in the Egyptian Book of Emerging Into the Light, also known as the Egyptian Book of The Dead.

It includes remaining open-minded about what powers of mind you might have – hunches (intuition, precognition) – the ability to receive inspiration – telepathy. Allow yourself to receive. Study the received content and see how it relates to the experiences you are having. Does the content have the ring of truth? When you act upon the received advice, are the results positive or negative? Don’t become hung up on where are the messages coming from – that might not be answerable yet – but that doesn’t mean that one should ignore all such content – better to cautiously test it in your day-to-day life.

Don’t leave out the soul of life – things like wonder and awe, Flow state, spiritual experiences, these peak experiences as Maslow called them have always been tied up with the works of great artists, musicians, thinkers, poets, people who have made life even more wonderful and precious – remain open to those experiences happening to you more often.

Here’s another exercise – try it on for size. Put your preferred hand on your heart and say to yourself:

  • Evidence suggests to some philosophers – Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism, Berkeley, Harvey, and others – a parental field of consciousness within which the Universe is happening
  • If this field does not perceive you, you do not exist
  • I am a point of view of that Universe consciousness – regarding Itself from many points of view

That may only be a mind-stretching exercise, or it may be the truth. All of the science we have today can fit even more neatly in that framework than it does in the dominant Earth first-world human culture bias framework of materialistic accidentalism.

Key #11:

Inner Visibility: See Your BioAI, See Your Muse

Love to all,
Bill

 

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Acceleritis Theory Validated

Created March 14, 2024
Welcome to this week’s Bill Harvey Blog.

The amount of information being processed daily by the average human being has been accelerating ever since the invention/discovery of written language.

In my 1976 book Mind Magic I postulated that the amount of information being processed daily by the average human being has been accelerating ever since the invention/discovery of written language.

And I theorized that this was the cause of a mental/emotional state I called Emergency Oversimplification Procedure (EOP). This is a state of consciousness in which questions are set aside, experiences are not assimilated, personal effectiveness is reduced, creativity is blocked, the awe and wonder of life is invisible, one subscribes to black vs. white thinking imposed by others, one has prerecorded responses used all the time, new learning and growth are stultified. One is coping but not mastering life. One is a conditioned robot.

In 2011, in this article, I started using the term “Acceleritis” to describe the condition of information overload acceleration over time.

Recently my wife Lalita gave me a birthday present of a new book called Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention—and How to Think Deeply Again by Johann Hari. In this book, the author documents social scientists’ work, essentially proving that my theory is correct. Both the author and the scientists whose work he cites add greatly to the picture, and I highly recommend reading this book for that reason, and because it also is a great read.

We can regain the use of our individuality, solve our problems by focused attention, be happier, and give back more to others. We can accelerate our growth by slowing down and choosing what to do next based on real value.

Hari concludes that external forces have caused our inability to concentrate, rather than being caused by a lack of willpower on our part. He divides the book into chapters to review these external causes one by one. And he starts with the digital devices which are so obviously part of the problem. One citation is a 2016 study which found that we touch our phones an average of 2,617 times every 24 hours.

Interestingly, he also cites studies which use data from digital platforms to prove that acceleration is going on. For example, a 2019 paper in Nature Communications, “Accelerating Dynamics of Collective Attention”, studied the major digital platforms and found that over time, topics spiking in public interest last shorter and shorter times before wearing out. For example, trending hashtags in Twitter (now X) remained in the top 50 for 17.5 hours on average, but by 2016 that had dropped to 11.9 hours. Similar accelerations were found in Google and Reddit but not in Wikipedia. The appearance and disappearance of new phrases were analyzed across millions of books in Google Books published since 1880 and the pattern looked a lot like Twitter’s (now X).

(In a recent meeting I was asked if they should be worried because their ad recall scores appear to be dropping over a period of years. I explained that day-after TV ad recall scores averaged 26% when I first got into the business and were now 4%, so they shouldn’t take it personally.

I also mentioned that attention to ads and everything else has shortened dramatically during my tenure, and in our biggest media type today, digital, it is 1-2 seconds.

Since that meeting I’ve seen results of a neuro study where eye tracking showed that, out of hundreds of viewable social media ads, 90% of them got 1 second of attention or less – and this was in a laboratory forced viewing environment.)

Hari also interviewed Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the famous psychologist who coined the term Flow state, and had been an advisor to The Human Effectiveness Institute, and the author makes the connection between the state of distraction blocking Flow state, and advises slowing down, getting more sleep, staying off devices in much the way you’re used to reading in my posts here.

The amount of research covered in this book is impressive, and the writing is excellent. Where my own work is additive to this superb body of work lies in two main areas. (These may be addressed later in Hari’s book which I am not quite halfway through. I’ll let you know.)

One is the art and science of introspection. It’s important to spend as much time in Flow state and this is accomplished by first learning how to bring on the Observer state. Mind Magic and Powerful Mind are my two books on that subject. Powerful Mind was serialized in this blog last year and the book version will be out this year.

The other is our culture’s lack of an inspiring sense of mission for the vast majority of people. This is what causes the desire for distraction and the willingness to be led like sheep down any path that gives us a pleasant diversion from lives devoid of purpose and meaning. This is the source of the awful notion of killing time.

My recommendations as to how to develop an inspiring sense of mission are also included in the latter two books, and in my science-spirituality-synthesis nonfiction books A Theory of Everything Including Consciousness and “God” and You Are The Universe: Imagine That. The essence of my message: it is quite possible that we ourselves are part of a consciousness of such power that it earns the word “God”, and that if we watch for clues, we find we are being guided by events toward sharing our gifts with the world.

Because my view of reality is so different, I felt it would be necessary to also write fiction books which illustrate what I mean by getting into various characters’ heads. Hence Agents of Cosmic Intelligence, my series of four (so far) sci-fi/alternate history novels. In fact, Episode 1, The Great Being, was just published and became available on this site and Amazon yesterday.

We can regain the use of our individuality, solve our problems by focused attention, be happier, and give back more to others. We can accelerate our growth by slowing down and choosing what to do next based on real value.

If you have questions, please feel free to have a conversation with my Soopra AI.

Love,
Bill

The Feeling of Being Guided by a Higher Power to Do Good

Powerful Mind Part 46
Created January 26, 2024

Welcome to this week’s Bill Harvey Blog.
Read Powerful Mind 45

“Have you ever wondered what life is all about?” I asked the precocious two-year-old.

“All the time,” she replied.

This is the kind of conversation that parents should initiate as early as possible in a child’s upbringing.

But since this is a rarity, we tend to grow up shoving our awe and wonder out of our conscious minds, because we don’t have time to dally. It’s all coming at us too fast, especially in recent centuries. A conscious mind process forms which Freud named the Ego and the Superego.

The Ego presents itself as the active conscious mind and so we all think of it as our self. It’s really more of a chosen spokesperson for the much greater totality of the real self that is our individuality.

The Superego is that part of the Ego (in my estimation) that second-guesses ourselves, our inner critic. Freud considered the Superego a separate functionality in which society’s demands are embedded as the conscience.

H.L. Mencken said, “Conscience is the inner voice that warns us that somebody may be watching.”

The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex may be the part of the brain playing a major role in the manifestations Freud labeled the Superego. It is probably also the structure supporting what Daniel Kahneman labeled as System 2, explicit thinking. Interestingly, Observer state (my term for metacognition) is very useful, and I associate it with the executive control network mediated by the frontal brain; but in Flow state, which is even more effective than Observer state, the frontal regions of the brain give up control to more primitive parts of the brain (“hypofrontality”), and the Ego and inner critic disappear, as intuition and practice meld everything into a sense of oneness that does itself effortlessly.

When one begins to shift into Flow state as a way of life, it transcends the Ego, as if the Ego had been training wheels which you can now take off your bike. You can now sense and live from the real you, your full self, not the defensive Ego, but from the joyous Muse within you, it was you all along, although it may also be the Self of the Universe living through you.

By now, many people know about the Flow state, and it has become formally recognized by the scientific and medical communities. However, there are some aspects of that state which are still taboo subjects. These are the spiritual intuitions which often accompany the Flow state.

We’ve already discussed Noia, my term for the intuitive feeling that invisible forces are trying to help us by getting us to notice certain stimuli which appear to be giving us information relevant to our current situation and/or thought process. U.S. Andersen, whom I’ve cited earlier, writes about surrendering control to what he calls the Secret Self, and he is talking about the same thing I’ve often referred to as the Universe, or the Muse within. The religion of Islam also preaches the same notion of releasing control to Allah.

It’s conceivable that one should first use the conscious mind and intuition to practice at life and gain a degree of proficiency at it before giving up the inner critic continuously second-guessing oneself, i.e. the Ego. Without practice, the Flow state might not come on so easily just by making a decision to release conscious control. Instead, one might be fooled by impulses coming from the Ego that one thinks are coming from higher guidance.

I know from my personal experience that the latter misclassification has dramatically fooled me many times in my life, especially as a youngster.

I think now that many spiritual people think they are being guided to make political choices by higher powers when it might actually be the Ego masquerading as God.

Even those of us who experience some Flow state every day are (wisely) hesitant to speak much about a feeling of being guided from above. It’s the sort of statement that can cause one can wind up being pigeonholed as a nut.

U.S. Andersen embraces this sense of being guided by the Universe to do things that will develop us as individuals and enable us to provide more value to others. Having been a successful pro football player and businessman perhaps he was less concerned about how people labeled him.

In this book Powerful Mind being serialized here, I’ve already recommended that you keep an open mind about whether the Universe might be a single Self, and you one avatar of The One. It is definitely a scientific possibility that cannot be ruled out. Whether or not in Flow state, I now take it as almost a certainty, because of my experiences. But I do not urge you to believe anything, merely keep an open mind to all possibilities, and notice what your own experience teaches you.

Set your sights high. Visualize how you want your life to be without undershooting out of fear of being heartbroken by failure. Don’t be attached to any outcome, just visualize the outcomes you want, and curtail negativity, and enjoy your life each moment. Turn negativity into learning and creatively adapting to circumstance. Don’t fight what is, go with it and steer toward the positive.

As Bob Dylan wrote, “You’re gonna have to serve somebody.” Each of us is serving by the work we choose to do, we are serving people, they pay us money for what we do for them. In your life’s best dream—your visualization that you will refresh daily—you have to be doing the work that gives you joy and gets you into the Flow state, otherwise you are not on the path to your dream. If you have to make a difficult switch in your life, do it in the way that gives you and others joy rather than stress, and make changes patiently.

Leave open the possibility that you are working for the Universe and that it will guide you along the way to your dream; look for possible messages in everything, but don’t talk yourself into wishful thinking, stay balanced and open-minded, use all of your faculties, all of the instruments in your inner orchestra.

Attune yourself to what is happening to you – become one with it – and go with its flow, except where you feel the need to go around certain parts of it that simply don’t feel right.

Believe in yourself and your ability to tackle any problem life throws your way, just know that you have to put everything else aside and patiently, without time pressure, use single-pointed focus on that one problem. Other side thoughts will arise but note them in writing and put them aside for later. You can tackle everything but take it one at a time, don’t rush, and you’ll see that you can solve everything you need to.

The feeling of being guided by a higher power to do good is a wonderful feeling. Make sure you are being an empiricist about it, that other people are sincerely thanking you, that you are really doing good in general, not just for selected others, with some other folks actually being harmed by your actions, but doing good for everybody. That and a feeling of joy in your life are the two essential checkpoints that you are on the path to your dreams.

Key #12:

Continuously focus on, bring out, and enjoy the Good

The 12 Powerful Mind Keys

Powerful Mind Key

New Mental Strategy

Blogpost Link

#1

Doubt your own last thought/feeling.

#2

Study, edit, and reset your automatic reactions.

#3

Constructively and kindly express what you are really feeling.

#4

Root for the Universe, not just for your current vehicle.

#5

Self-rating is irrelevant.

#6

Be sure of what YOU want and enjoy the journey to your dreams, without attachment to outcomes.

#7

Take Observer position, note your feelings without owning them.

#8

When there is too much going on, rotate attention to make sure every workstream is covered.

#9

Consciously determine how much to take your time.

#10

Patiently determine the most constructive use of each salient inner experience.

#11

Inner Visibility: See Your BioAI, See Your Muse.

#12

Continuously focus on, bring out, and enjoy the Good.

Love to all,
Bill