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The LearningMethods Library
A Short Interview with David Gorman
Broadcast live by Eddie Matthews on CJCS Radio
in Stratford, Ontario, Canada on March 18, 2003
Copyright © 2003, David Gorman, all rights reserved world-wide.
The LearningMethods name and logo are trademarks of David Gorman.
NOTE: This is a transcript of a short live radio interview from
March 2003. It has
been slightly edited to make the spoken words and meaning read more easily in print.
The author, David Gorman, is joining me this morning. There is a seminar
coming up that you might be interested in because David is, from what I
have understood from others, very good at helping you break some bad
habits. Good morning David, how are you?
I’m very good, Eddie.
Thanks for joining me this morning. What books have you been releasing?
And you’re currently working on another one, I believe, right?
I am, yes. About twenty-some years ago I wrote a big three-volume text on
human anatomy and function with all the details you ever want to have.
This one now that I am working on is kind of the companion volume that
puts it together from all the bits into one whole so that you can
integrate it and actually go out and do things in practice.
So how to you then go from that to helping people who have succumbed to
really bad habits trying to break those bad habits?
There are two parallel lines to this. Let me go back and just give you a
quick bit of background. After I wrote that book people and were coming to me
for help with various problems, so I was becoming a little bit of an expert
at helping people. But, it became more clear to me from all the research
that the amount of people having problems and the degree of those problems
were increasing, all across at least the west anyway—tension, stress,
depression, and so on. And you know, Eddie, with the population booming
there are just not enough experts to stem the tide.
So, from the late nineteen-eighties I started to look at
how to help people become their own expert. To actually be able to have
the tools they need to explore their own problems and solve them without
having to go to someone else.
And then things like, what? Quitting smoking, biting nails, anything like
that? Or something else?
Well, you know, actually any problem—anything that when you are going
about in your daily life and you have one of those “arrrgh” moments of
pain or tension or conflict or struggle, even the recognition that maybe
one is smoking too much or is caught in phobias like the fear of heights.
It doesn’t really matter what it is… Whatever someone might recognize in
their own life is a problem to them, that they would like to change.
That’s a good point, just in their own life. Is it mind over matter with
Actually, funny that you say that, because when we get down to helping
people look into what is going on and what is causing their problem, it is often their way of thinking, their way of understanding how they
function and how the world works. that is at the root of the
But what you are doing, and please, I don’t mean to diminish it, but do
you feel qualified with some of these cases, these people that come to you
and do you recommend that they should seek further help from somebody that
may be more qualified?
Well, certainly at times if someone has, for instance, a more obvious kind
of physical something where they need medical attention, yes, I would
certainly pass them along if they haven’t already explored that. But for
people going though their lives with some sort of chronic problem that
they would like to change then the qualification needed is having a
knowledge of the tools needed to track down the cause of their problem and
how to change it.
You know, it really surprised me when I started exploring
the possibility of people solving their own problems. I had no idea how
possible it would be. But, it become clearer and clearer to me over the
years that we all have this absolutely incredible heritage of exquisite
sensitivity, perception and awareness and an amazing intelligence that
allow us to understand the experiences that we are having and make sense
out of them. In other words—learning.
But on the other side, a lot of people that do have these habits or
problems, they may not realize that they are harming others around them
because they seem to have the blinders on.
Well that’s true and you see it is the others around them then that
experience the problem. And they are the ones that recognize the problems
and they will be the one that are looking for some solution or way to
straighten out the relationship or whatever it is that is happening.
Always someone is going to register the problem. You see, in a sense,
we have a built-in problem detector that wakes us up when there is some
sort of issue going on that we need to look at, and allows us to look at
it and see what is causing it and see what choices or different ways of
going about things might solve it.
But, in a way, when it comes to psychology and what is going on through
somebody’s mind, sometimes it doesn’t hit them until they almost hit rock
Well, that does happen, but that’s fairly extreme, like serious alcoholism
or complete burn-out.
But at the very least, there are millions of people going around who have
problems that are enough to give them a difficulty or in some cases, quite
a lot of difficulties, but who aren’t really in the extremes. And a lot of
them are very interested in learning and changing.
That’s why it is good that there are support groups around where other
people may understand and probably relate to what these people are going
Absolutely, and if people can just even begin to share their experiences
and find out about themselves and others, there are a lot of clues in what
happens to people. In a sense, it is really what the LearningMethods work
is. It is getting people to not only look at their own situations, but
look around them and possibly even be able to help someone else who they
can see things are happening for, but where the other person is a little
too stuck in it to know what to do with it.
Is it because many times people are crying out for help and they need
someone to talk to?
Yes, it is certainly good to have somebody to talk to. But if somebody who
is crying out for help actually had a set of tools or a way to
investigate, to systematically explore what’s going on for themselves at
these times, they'd be a lot better off. It is not all that difficult to solve some of these quite
Well, the mind you know, is one of those things that… I don’t think we can
even begin to imagine what can go on in somebody’s mind you know. We keep
hearing about it, and there are so many books that came out and there are
so many people that came out with their own ideas. It is just incredible
that we are just tapping the surface of the mind.
Well, I’ll tell you one of the most amazing facts that is sort of hidden
in something that I suppose lots of people already know. That is that when
they do those double-blind drug assessment tests, they give half the group
a placebo and half the group the actual drug. Well, it is average that
about 25% of the people are helped by the placebo and that’s pretty
standard across the board. In terms of the test, the drug has to be more
effective than the placebo to be licensed.
Once again it is the mind over matter.
Yes, that’s an incredible fact when you think that one quarter of the
people are helped not because of anything they took but because they
believed that it is going to help them!
Yes that’s true.
And the really big thing that is overlooked is that if one quarter of
people can be helped by their belief alone, how many of problems they have
might have been caused in the first place by their pre-existing
unconstructive beliefs? That’s what this work is uncovering.
Interesting. David, you have got a seminar coming up. When is it going to
be held and where?
The workshop is two days over a weekend on April 12 and 13 here in
Stratford. It would be of special interest for performers, actors or
singers and so on, who use themselves as their own instrument and who want
to learn more about how they function in what they do professionally. And
also body-work people or teachers who are helping others with their
physical or functional problems. But really it should appeal to anybody
who wants to find out more about themselves and go beyond the bits and
pieces—this muscles does this or this function happens in breathing—and
really understand themselves from the whole level of the feeling,
thinking, responding, choosing human being—themselves—in their daily lives.
It sounds very much that you are tapping the inner self.
Yes, right at the level of our understanding and how that understanding is
what we use to guide ourselves in life and if the understanding of how we
function is off, so will all our functions be.
David, if people want to get information, can they give you a call?
Yup, they can reach me at 519-xxx-xxxx while we are in Stratford.
xxx-xxxx is the number, is that right? OK, so give David Gorman a call if
you would like to find out about your inner self. It may be a nice
workshop to check out. And maybe take your partner with you. It will be a
fun one to do. David, I appreciate your time this morning.
Thank you, Eddie.
And we will talk with you again soon, I hope. David Gorman joins me this
morning, and once again here is that phone number: xxx-xxxx. It’s 8:26 on 1240 Radio, CJCS Stratford.
There is a small biography of personal details about the
About the Author
David Gorman developed the LearningMethods work out
of over 40 years of research and teaching experiences. His background is in art and science and
a fascination with exploring human structure and function. In the early 1970s he spent many nights
dissecting and drawing in the human anatomy lab. In 1981 he published an illustrated 600-page
work on our human musculo-skeletal system called The Body Moveable (about to enter its 6th edition) and in 1996, a collection of
articles, Looking at Ourselves (now in its 2nd edition).
He happened upon the Alexander Technique in 1972 and was immediately intrigued
by its power for change. After training as an Alexander Technique teacher with Walter Carrington in London, David has
been teaching that work since 1980, becoming well-known worldwide
for his innovations to the work and notorious for challenging the orthodoxy of the profession.
He has been invited to teach all over the world in universities, conservatories and training colleges,
at conferences and symposia, and with performance groups and health professionals.
In 1982, his teaching was revolutionised by his discovery of a new model of
human organisation — Anatomy of Wholeness — with its
profound implications about our in-built natural tendency toward balance, ease and wholeness. He
extended these insights into a new way of training teachers of the Alexander Technique and from
1988 to 1997 in London, England he trained 45 teachers.
His experiences with his own students and in other training groups made it clear
that a huge part of our chronic problems lay not in the 'body' but in our consciousness and habitual
way of seeing things and how we misinterpret our daily experiences and then become caught in reaction
to these misunderstandings. At this point it also became apparent that his discoveries revealed
new premises which in turn implied new teaching methods, so David developed the LearningMethods
work to teach people how to apply their in-built intelligence and clarity of perception to their
daily experience in order to understand their problems, solve them and more successfully navigate their
Since the beginning of this new work in 1997, David has trained a growing number
of LearningMethods Teachers, many of whom are now teaching the LM work in universities and conservatories,
and he has now begun a new modular training program
for LearningMethods, Anatomy of Wholeness and the Alexander Technique, pioneering new ways to learn and teach via online
Telephone: +1 416-519-5470
78 Tilden Crescent, Etobicoke, Ontario M9P 1V7 Canada (map)