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On Belief Systems and Learning

A debate from the Alextech e-mail discussion group on the validity
of the premises of the Alexander Technique

Part 6

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All contributions are copyright by their authors. Note that the e-mail addresses of the participants were valid at the time of the debate but may not be valid any longer.

Section Six
— and continues...

  1.  Robert Rickover — re: re: More on Gorman essay — June 30/98
  2.  John Coffin — re: More on Gorman essay — June 30/98
  3.  David Langstroth — A final thought on belief systems — June 30/98
  4.  John Wynhausen — D.G. ‘s sonata in 3 parts — June 30/98
  5.  Jim Whiteside — David’s Teaching Technique — July 1/98
  6.  David Gorman — re: David’s Teaching Technique — July 2/98
  7.  Patrick Snook — re: David Gorman, belief systems, questions and consistency — July 1/98
  8.  Mike Blayney — On belief systems and learning — July 1/98
  9.  John Coffin — re: On belief systems and learning — July 1/98
 10.  David Gorman — reply to Mike Blayney and John Coffin — July 2/98
 11.  Kirk McElhearn — re: David’s Teaching Technique — July 1/98
 12.  David Gorman — reply to Kirk McElhearn — July 2/98

Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
From: Rrick2@aol.com
To: JohnC10303@aol.com, alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: Re: Re: More on Gorman essay

In a message dated 6/29/98 3:30:14 PM, John Coffin wrote:
"During the Sturm und Drang of the founding of NASTAT, I heard many Marjites make airy claims about how they were beyond the teaching practices of the rest of us. Many of those same people went on to discover that Marjs immense skill included techniques like the table and the whispered ah which she had not used much, if at all, in group settings. In both these cases, the result (at least some of the time) was constructive self-questioning and growth."

I wonder about this. No doubt some were guilty of their own brand of arrogance. But "many"? There aren’t many to start with and most of the ones I know (and I’ve met the majority of them) didn’t share that attitude.

One other point: Marj used the whispered ahh frequently in group settings, at least since the early 80s.

Robert Rickover

Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
From: JohnC10303@aol.com
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: Re: More on Gorman essay

Hello list: and Robert:

It was certainly ‘many’ in the group who met with NASTAT planners at ATI back in 80-something. I know that at ATI people (like me) were beginning to ask Marj about ahs, table, etc. in the early 80s. The simplicity and clarity of her ‘take’ on these procedures was quite a jolt to me back then. I still wonder how much we give up to devote so much time and thought to flashy hands-on tricks at the expense of Thinking.

If I had only thought to ask about hands-on-chair!

John Coffin

Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
From: David Langstroth david@alexandertec.u-net.com
Subject: A final thought on belief systems

Dear all,

I would just like to add a comment on the nature of "good science". David Gorman in his most recent posting has attempted to dismiss criticism with the statement,
"I shall be happy to answer any questions and debate the subject AFTER the experiments have been made. this the way that good science works."

This position unfortunately both misconstrues the nature of "good science" and misrepresents the nature of most (thought not all) of the criticisms that I have seen on this list. Most criticisms have not questioned the results (that the violinist played without pain for example) but have addressed themselves to the way in which David has interpreted these results. It is not valid to dismiss these criticisms by implying that without having done the experiments there can be no comment.

Reference to any scientific journal or forum would illustrate that "good science" embraces the debate over what a particular set of results means. Science is not just the obtaining of results but also includes analysis and interpretation, an activity which involves reasoning and in which first hand experience of the results is actually unnecessary. If it were, then every "good scientist" would have to repeat every experiment that had ever gone before.

When I have written in the past about the repeatability of science this refers to the necessity of being able to repeat experiments to check the results. Experiments don’t have to be repeated when the results are accepted as described, when the debate focuses on the theorization and interpretation that has been built on top of those results.

Best Wishes,

David Langstroth, david@alexandertec.u-net.com, Cardiff, Wales

Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
From: john wynhausen wynhaus@clandjop.com
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: D.G. ‘s sonata in 3 parts

I just read quickly through David Gorman’s detailed description of his breakthrough and I found it very thought provoking. There were several points in there that are certainly lessons for me and perhaps for all of us.

One that jumped out at me was his description of how he was teaching. He was teaching in essence the way he learned... by imitation. Learning by imitation is how much learning takes place. We watch the teacher, we copy what the teacher does, and hopefully we don’t become such good imitators that we don’t have to think about what we’re doing. D. G. describes how how he eventually came to see what he was doing as inadequate and discovered a key missing element in his understanding.

That key, the beliefs of the student , I would agree are a vital piece of the teaching/learning equation. What is more primary than what, I am not so sure of, but belief/faith is certainly primary. It sounds from Davids essay like we all put too much faith in our will to do at the expense of this miraculous little servant we call the body.

I borrow from lots of disciplines. One I sometimes borrow from is Transactional Analysis. It seems that often in teaching, especially in the beginning of a student /teacher relationship, the teacher takes on a role as Parent and the student the role as Child. This is when the teacher must in a sense be the parent to the child a somehow innoculate the child with faith, faith in life, faith in God, faith in the twelve steps, faith in the Alexander Technique, faith in "shit happens." Hopefully this stage in the relationship won’t get bogged down and the child will open up to learning and start learning to think for themselves.

Musicians, especially violinists, have pretty strict superegos. Some of them also have super egos. It’s easy to see how David’s approach might work pretty well in the case of the violinist. He seemed to find just the right words to reach his students critical "I" ( the superego) and get that bugger to stop bugging. Violinist are already pretty well trained and have to be pretty coordinated to do what they do. It would seem that they would not need alot of physical attention to their coordination. David presents a clear illustration of why this is the case. What David seems to realize is something I am still learning, that thought directs energy. But what is beautiful about AT is that for us retards, for whom energy directs thought, we can have the experience in our bodies first and later come back and start learning how to think.

Thanks David and list,

Date: 01 Jul 1998 07:20 EDT
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
From: "Jim Whiteside" whitesid@nortel.ca
Subject: David’s Teaching Technique


Your introspective approach is very interesting, especially about getting the person to stay in the moment. What do you do about prevention, i.e. someone who has come for lessons but who has no pain or noticeable difficulties?


Date: Tue, 2 July 1998
From: David Gorman 100653.2057@compuserve.com
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: Re: David’s Teaching Technique

July 2, 1998

Message text written by "Jim Whiteside", July 1, 1998
"Your introspective approach is very interesting, especially about getting the person to stay in the moment. What do you do about prevention, i.e. someone who has come for lessons but who has no pain or noticeable difficulties?"


The simplest answer is: nothing. If someone has no particular problems, I tell them that they are lucky and why not just enjoy their life while they can. IF, later on they do notice ‘problems’ or ‘symptoms’, THEN is the time to look into what they are symptoms of...

What happens next will depend on why that particular person came.

If they really do have no difficulties, but nonetheless are interested in learning and how it works and how to help other people learn, then of course they are welcome to stay and see what happens for people who do have difficulties--how these people can come to understand what the difficulty is, where and what their misconceptions and faulty ‘reality’ appreciation are, what kind of specific experiments or processes they can use to see what really happens when they are not busy re-confirming their current belief system, etc. This they will learn from and end up knowing a great deal more about the underlying nature of people’s problems, about why they are so caught, and about what someone needs to learn to be liberated from these ‘problems’. To reach the understanding necessary to help someone else learn, they will, of course, need to learn to see it from the other person’s point of view, since they themselves may not have had those experiences in their own life.

Usually, when people have stayed to see what happens for others, they begin to bring out their own problems. Problems that they didn’t think were relevant to the territory of ‘the work’. That is they may bring in a problem they have with their low value of themselves, or a problem fear about losing love, or a fear of flying, or other issues that they initially thought were ‘out of bounds’ or ‘private’ or in the realm of some other work, therapy perhaps.

If, on the other hand, they are not so interested in looking at how learning works for specific people on specific issues, AND they really don’t have any problems, but still want to learn about prevention, I ask them prevention of what? What is the point in learning about prevention of something you don’t have and may never have. "Sufficient unto the day, are the problems thereof", to paraphrase.

Often, this point of view in someone reveals a belief system. Usually it goes something like this: "There are lots of ‘problems’ lurking out there. I don’t have one now, but I could get one later. What do I need to do to make sure that I don’t?" Challenging this usually brings up a lack-of-trust issue for that person, as in, "But I don’t trust that my ‘system’ will function well without me watching over ‘it’" And, "If something does go ‘wrong’, I’m not sure that I notice it ‘in time’ and be able to deal with it then".

A person with this ‘construct’ has not yet learned that their wonderful system will send a message if there is anything ‘wrong’ (or unconstructive). These messages are what most people call the ‘problem’ or the ‘symptom’. That is the wake-up call to notice what is happening that may need changing. Then, as one understands why there was a problem and changes, they will have learned something they didn’t know before and will be living in a different world where the problem won’t happen because they are not caught in the misconception that created it.

But before they learn this they will have the current belief system they do have. From that belief system’s point of view there is no way to prevent anything, because you do not yet have the knowledge to even see how your current constructs and actions will inevitably lead to those ‘problems’ and ‘symptoms’.

However, this is not a problem, as most people think. Life is for living, not improving. When we just live life, life will give us the lessons we need when we need them. That is, this is fundamental change in construct from "there are problems we need to solve and to prevent so that later we can live better", to "we are living now and enjoying what we have for what it is; there are also many opportunities for learning which just come up by themselves when life shows us that we have misconceived how things work and hence are working against the way things work; these are wonderful opportunities because as we learn, everything works even better.

From this letter point of view it would be pointless to prevent the very learning that life presents to us by trying to do some prior ‘learning’ about some general territory that is not in our direct experience in order to avoid the later learning where all the actual material is there to learn from anyway.

I hope this longer answer explains how I feel about prevention. My experience has lead me to see that we have such a wonderful system that we already have all the information available to us in our own perception and we also have another characteristic, our intelligence that allows us to understand the significance of this information when we are in the moment enough with what is happening to see it for what it is.

What robs us of being able to put these two together to learn (that is, to continually revise our constructs more and more accurately) is that we are fixed in whatever current construct we have and have already projected it onto the events in front of us. The first step, in other words, is to learn how to use the moments of the symptoms as a way to take in that which will show the flaws in our construct...


Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998
From: Patrick Snook patrick.snook@yale.edu
To: Peter Ruhrberg pruhrberg.at@cityweb.de cc: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: Re: David Gorman, belief systems, questions and consistency

A preliminary thought or two on this and its related thread: David Gorman appears to have taken up the gauntlet thrown by Alexander when he said "If you want to do what I do you must do what I did . . .".

The violinist example provides a unique opportunity for an excellent illustration, and for a swift experiment. For a musician, the stimulus associated with performance (of which the symptoms are usually "nerves") can usually be summonsed from within in front of almost any audience (i.e. it’s easy to "get nervous" about playing for people), although to be sure it takes some courage to face the symptoms, and nerves themselves can be unpredictable. I wonder though if this example--while serving the written word and the essay form pefectly--might not be another thunderbolt-on-the-road-to-Damascus account, and therefore (to change metaphorical donkeys in midstream) another "dagger of the mind", in Alexander’s phrase. I’ve written here before about my thought that the AT has more to say about lifelong learning than about sudden, cathartic, revelatory, therapeutic whatevers. (Undoubtedly, the AT may produce its insights, and, for some, its cures, but I suspect that we will wait in vain for these moments to arrive.)

My teacher enjoyed telling me that betimes Macdonald would smilingly lament, at the age of 64 or so, "Don’t worry, the first 64 years are the hardest". He would also confess that in all his years of teaching he had never felt like putting his hands on a pupil. Add that comment to Peter Ruhrberg’s quotations of Alexander’s disatisfactions with his own teaching, and we have an inkling of what it takes to be a good teacher. (I think that teaching happens by default, whatever and however good the teacher’s intention. As Macdonald’s boxing coach said to him, "I can teach you this, but I can’t learn you." Perfect.)

I did take from Gorman’s essay the important lesson and reminder that the AT above all is experimental (that term can be found in F. P. Jones’s writings too), in the scientific sense: "What happens if I dont . . . and instead I think up?" My teacher used this language often. If only I’d listened . . . .

Preliminary thoughts, as I said. For me now, back to square one.


Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998
From: Blayney Mike Mike.Blayney@fhs.fhscu.nhs.uk
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: On belief systems and learning

I am fairly new to AT so it is with some trepidation that I dip my toe into the water’s of this forum. I have only been having lessons for about 3 months but have read an amount of the AT related literature including David Gorman’s Web articles which I found deeply perceptive and intellectually stimulating, particularly the way we humans get trapped into ‘bad’ habit forming cycles (in all sorts of areas - not just AT related, whatever that is). I have been following this thread with interest but each new email re-awakens the same nagging question in me. I’ve prbably missed something quite obvious but nevertheless here it is:

The violinist tightens up (or whatever) when she tries to play well. She usually tries to play well when ‘it matters’, supposedly to a percieved critical audience. The answer to her problem is to stop ‘trying to play well’. Fine, this I can appreciate.Her thought (belief system?) that she must ‘try and play well’ is now inextricably linked to her ‘problem’ (although I wonder whether her belief system based in ‘trying to play well’ was historically instrumental in her playing well? - but I digress). I suppose we all have occasions where we tighten or freeze when in front of an audience and thinking ‘I won’t try’ can help - as can other techniques e.g. thinking of everyone in the audience as your friend instead of a potential critic.

But what about the person who has slouched around for countless years, rounded shoulders, head bent, back over-arched, hips forward and is now in trouble with pain in the neck and lower back. His set of ‘habits’ are inter-related and ingrained over many years. We are told it is no good telling a man to stand with correct posture who doesn’t have a clue as to what a correct posture is. Should we tell him, like the violinist, to ‘stop trying to stand up straight’ and expect his problems to disappear (sorry that’s a bit flippant, but point made I hope). Surely the difference here is mainly in the increased complexity of the ‘problems’ and belief systems in play. With the violinist there is a well percieved step that can be taken to change her belief system but the sloucher is so far removed from a belief system that is going to help him that he needs a series of stepping stones. What are these stepping stones? How is he to get from where he is now to where he wants to be (whatever that is) It is like the alcoholic who is told to stop drinking - he doesn’t have a clue about how to achieve this. He needs a path to get to sobriety because his belief systems are so very far removed from a sober point of view.

I wonder if I ought to send this? Oh well, might as well,

Michael, Devon, England

Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998
From: JohnC10303@aol.com
To: Mike.Blayney@fhs.fhscu.nhs.uk, alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: Re: On belief systems and learning

Hello list: and Mike

Wonderful post! One thing that comes to mind is that "playing well," represents an end to be gained. The problem David addresses is that the violinist’s response to the stimulus of that ‘end’ has been (or become) an unhelpful one. In order to acheive her goal she must first stop pursuing it along old lines. e.g. "Trying the same thing over and over and expecting different results."

Dewey’s sloucher is in the same position. Unlike the violinist, he has NO success with his attempts to ‘stand straight,’ and has little impetus to continue trying. Still, both individuals need to cease ‘trying’ as the initial step. The violinist is probably capable of ‘playing well’ once she ceases the extra effort involved in acting on her IDEA of playing well. The sloucher will need to go on to new experiences of what ‘standing’ does and does not mean, before he can know what kind of effort is really needed.

John Coffin

Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 15:02:17 -0400
From: David Gorman 100653.2057@compuserve.com
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: reply to Mike Blayney and John Coffin

Hi again everyone,

I’m not getting much works done with all this action on the forum as the postings come thick and fast... But here goes...

Mike Blayney writes on July 1, 1998
"The answer to her problem [the violinist] is to stop trying to play well. Fine, this I can appreciate. Her thought (belief system?) that she must try and play well is now inextricably linked to her problem (although I wonder whether her belief system based in trying to play well was historically instrumental in her playing well? - but I digress). I suppose we all have occasions where we tighten or freeze when in front of an audience and thinking I wont try can help"

I’m not sure what you mean by "her thought (belief system?) that she must try and play well is now inextricably linked to her problem’".

To me it is because she has come to this belief system through her past experiences (teachers, colleagues, feelings, whatever) that she now reacts to the situation she considers important by what she calls ‘trying to play well’. As she discovered in our experiment, this ‘trying to play well’ not only does NOT help her play well (quite the contrary), but the very trying to control her playing (the concentrating, the extra effort with her fingers and the bow) IS the tension and pain she feels. And she is only ‘doing’ this trying to control BECAUSE she still believes it will help her and she HAS to do it.

The answer to her problem is NOT to stop trying to play well. This was only the experiment we made so that she can directly perceive that her ‘playing well’ is NOT WHAT SHE THOUGHT IT WAS--in fact it is the opposite. This is not a TECHNIQUE to ‘cope’ with her problem, or a something to ‘do’ when the problem is there. It is a LEARNING experiment so that she can really take in that she was DELUDED (misconceiving) and so that she can really take in how things do actually work.

This may not sink in for her right away with the first experiment but it doesn’t take all that many. The ‘reality’ construct cannot keep up its ‘realityness’ when confronted with opposing experiences time after time.

If she did find herself in concert getting caught again in her trying to play well, it would be because she has not yet learned this. But, here is her chance to see it again, for she has the ‘symptom’ to remind her that she is indeed trying to play well (read: play better than she can at that moment)--and what that symptom is showing her is that doing so IS A STRAIN and that this is not a playing better, (And it is a strain for the very simple reason that you can’t do it--the world does not work that way!)

She then has the choice (if she remembers and if she chooses) to make the learning experiment again--to know what she wants but make no effort to do it, and to accept the consequences whatever they may be. IF, the consequences are that her tension again goes away and she enjoys herself and her playing is better, as it was before, then she has had another opportunity to really learn how things do work. In my experience it doesn’t take someone more than 5-10 times of really being present for these experiments to have changed their construct, and hence themselves.

Once her construct changes and she is no longer trying to play well, just is playing as well as she can, she will discover how much better (or worse) that does make her playing. That is, she will have answered FOR HERSELF your question about whether ‘trying to play well’ was historically instrumental in her playing well.

"But what about the person who has slouched around for countless years, rounded shoulders, head bent, back over-arched, hips forward and is now in trouble with pain in the neck and lower back... ...Should we tell him, like the violinist, to stop trying to stand up straight and expect his problems to disappear... ...Surely the difference here is mainly in the increased complexity of the problems and belief systems in play."

The belief system ‘in play’ for anyone will always be complex because it is the person’s whole ‘reality’. Hopefully from the above clarification of the violinist, you can see that it makes no sense to tell someone to stop trying to stand up straight. It certainly would be odd if someone expected their problems to disappear if they did so.

This is because in the example of the person who is slouching, he doesn’t even know what the problem really IS... yet. It seems that HE THINKS it is the slouching and that this is what is giving him the pain in the neck and back. This is why it would make sense for him to try to correct the ‘problem’ by standing up straight. The fact that this doesn’t work is a clue that his ‘slouching’ is not the problem at all, merely the organization or physical/functional coordination of whatever it is that he is up to (belief systems, thoughts, feelings, actions and all).

For such a person, the only step that makes sense is to go right back to finding out what he is up to in his life. The simplest way to do this is to find out what are his problems--the messages that have come to him as he perceives them. These are the ‘problems’ other than his ‘slouching’, since ‘he’ is not doing that, it is simply the inevitable and ‘natural’ physical/functional organization of his constructs. Natural in the sense that it is just what happens to him and has been happening to him for a while.

We can’t go anywhere deeper here with this example because it is all hypothetical and therefore there is no real person with real feelings and thoughts and history to work with. But if we had an actual person who really did want to change, that is where I’d go--to bring out whatever may be his concurrent ‘problems’, which of course are all part of his life and are inseparable from his ‘postural’ way of living that life.

To give you an idea of the kind of things that I mean by concurrent problems in a ‘sloucher’, I’ll use an example from my experience of the kinds of ‘problems’ that are also going on (these are from the person’s point of view, remember)--a low sense of value, constant judgement of oneself, trying hard to please, and so on.

As these come out and are explored and worked out in practice, and the person sees how they reinforced their low sense of value by imagining what other people thought of them (for instance), or sees that their judgement of themselves was to a much higher standard than their judgement of others, and as the person makes the experiments (for instance) to recognize what actually is happening at the moment of their imagining, they will deeply change. As they change, their physical/functional coordinations are no longer the coordinations of the old person, but of the new person.

Over time, as the person changes, their physical/functional coordination (their ‘use’ in the Alexander sense of the word), simply changes by itself. The person usually doesn’t even know it has changed until one day they notice that they are not at all like they use to be. A person (to use my example) who is not constantly down on themselves will be more up and happy and secure and strong and this will naturally be reflected in their whole carriage and speech and manner.

This gives us a new light on what John C. wrote on July 1, 1998:
"The sloucher will need to go on to new experiences of what standing does and does not mean, before he can know what kind of effort is really needed."

From my point of view, if the real issue has nothing at all to do with slouching or standing, there is no point in bringing someone to more awareness of their standing, in giving experiences of better standing, or how much effort is needed or anything like that. After all, what the person (or an outsider) is seeing as slouching in standing is not just in their standing but in everything they do, because it is the organization of being them. The more anyone might draw someone to ‘re-educating’ standing, the more they’d be forgetting that when someone is strong and happy (again to use the ‘problems’ of my example--there are others, of course), they are paying no attention to standing.

Standing, movement, posture, etc. are NOT something we have to learn, they are manifestations of who we are in our lives (our lived constructs). Change that and ALL the manifestations change in an integrated way.


Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 16:24:52 +0000
From: kirk@mcelhearn.com (Kirk Mcelhearn)
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: Re: David’s Teaching Technique

(I sent some comments directly to David on his article, which I find enlightening. I thought I would through just a brief comment out to the list, however, to see what others think of it. Note: I am not a teacher of the AT, but took lessons about 10 years ago, and have just started taking them again.)

It is and should be obvious to anyone that pulling the head back etc. are symptoms, and not causes in themselves. I had always thought that this was how Alexander considered it. I think what you are suggesting is quite interesting, but let me go one step further: you are advocating non-doing, letting things happen, and I definitely feel deeply that you are on the right track. But, let me ask you a question: if this is why we pull our heads back (to use your terminology), or why we play poorly, or miss the ball, is it the cause or the symptom? Suppose it were only another layer of symptom. Suppose the cause were still deeper......


Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 15:01:59 -0400
From: David Gorman 100653.2057@compuserve.com
To: alextech@life.uiuc.edu
Subject: reply to Kirk McElhearn

Thanks Kirk, for your long private post, I’ll respond in due course to you...

This reply is on Kirk McElhearn’s public question of July 1st, 1998:
"you are advocating non-doing, letting things happen, and I definitely feel deeply that you are on the right track. But, let me ask you a question: if this is why we pull our heads back (to use your terminology), or why we play poorly, or miss the ball, is it the cause or the symptom? Suppose it were only another layer of symptom. Suppose the cause were still deeper..."

If the symptom is what the person notices--the ‘low-value’ repeated experience of tension, pain, anxiety, fear, etc., then we are asking, "symptom of what?" If we find that what the person is up to is ‘trying to play well’ (with the emphasis on the trying) when they have their symptom of tension, or ‘imaging that people are judging them unfavourably’ (with the emphasis on imagining) when they have their symptom of nervousness or anxiety, then it is hard to escape that what is happening to the person (the tension, the anxiety) is the experience of being up to what they are up to (TRYING to play well, or IMAGINING people’s thoughts).

If we also see that the person has a belief system that says that this concert is important and I have to play well and I can do something to play well, they WILL try to do something to play well. If the person has a belief system that something is wrong with them and they are shy and other people are actually noticing their deficits and are judging them as lacking, then they will feel anxious whenever they get into that.

If we then invite them to not try to concentrate on playing well, but to simply play as they can, no matter how bad it may be, and if their tension then disappears and they play better and they enjoy themselves, then how can we escape that this ACTION of trying to play well (based on that misconception that it helps) is the CAUSE of the tension SYMPTOM, since it has just disappeared. Not only that but we must inevitably be drawn to the conclusion that the prior belief system was false--the trying DID NOT help me play well. A more accurate (more true) belief (knowledge) is that TRYING is an interference with my innate coordination and NOT TRYING helps me play well.

Or if we invite them to notice that they are imagining this judgement is in other people’s thoughts, when they are the one thinking it, and with a little reality checking have them find out that the other people present were not actually thinking of them at all, let alone negatively, and if their anxiety goes and they open up to the room in a much more easy way and begin to feel their own feelings rather than what they imagine others are feeling, and those feelings are now pretty nice in fact, then how can we escape that the imagining was the CAUSE of the anxiety SYMPTOM (experience), because it goes away when the person is recognizing their own thoughts, not mistaking them for others. It is obvious here that the prior belief system is false--people were not judging me, I was. etc. etc.

I don’t how Kirk feels about this, but I don’t see the need to invoke other levels than this...


Continued in PART 7...

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