Category Archives: Philosophy and Psychology

Who are you, really? Gabor Mate, stress, and childhood attachment problems

That’s an interesting question. Sticking a “really” on the end of his question like that suggests that the speaker wants a different answer from the one you are giving. I had tried to explain who I am with descriptions of … Continue reading

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Inside, outside, up side, down

Like it or not, there is no way to distinguish inner from outer reality. Chuang-tzu pointed that out over 2300 years ago, when he asked himself the question, “Am I a man dreaming that I am a butterfly, or a … Continue reading

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James Hollis on recovering a mature spiritual life

James Hollis was concerned with recovering a mature spiritual life in our very materialistic culture. In his book Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life: How to Finally, Really Grow Up (2005) he said, “In order to recover, or … Continue reading

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The Secret Teachings of Jesus

The Life and Times of Jesus,  that was the title of a philosophy course I was expected to teach in the late 1970s at Golden West College. The Dean wanted to counter the fundamentalist Christian influence of Chuck Smith’s wildly … Continue reading

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Seeking a Counselor is the last choice

When do we finally call the counselor? James Hollis noticed a pattern in his clients which is worth passing on to any person who feels like his or her life isn’t really working out that well. Of his clients Hollis … Continue reading

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The Trauma Vortex

When the US Army veteran gave me a crystal filled pyramid inscribed with a spiral, I put it in my car. Months later I was using it as a paper weight. It held my appointment book open, so the wind … Continue reading

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Socrates’ Mantra

We know nothing about what Socrates thought, except through the written work of Plato and Xenophon. Socrates was a talker, not a writer. In the Apology of Plato, Socrates claims he has an inner guide, a daimon, a belief shared … Continue reading

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The Internal Feminine of Philip K. Dick

When he died in 1982, Philip K. Dick left about 2000 pages of manuscript, much of it hand written, laying around his house. Those pages were collected and edited into The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick which was finally published … Continue reading

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The Vinegar Tasters

Stephen Karcher asks us to imagine an ancient Chinese scroll painting in his introduction to Ta Chuan: The Great Treatise (2000). Here’s what he says, Three men are shown grouped around a large open cask where vinegar is fermented. They … Continue reading

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St. Niklaus, the Reformed Berserker

When I mentioned to my friend that Saint Nick’s was going to be celebrated on the 6th of December, he said “Niklaus, the Swiss saint?” “No, Nicholas, the Bishop of Myra, the one who evolved into Santa Claus. They are … Continue reading

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