Turning Personal Taste into Ideals

[from Marsha….It was quite a revelation to me years ago when presented with the idea from Dr. Bob of the difference between personal taste and  ideals. It was harder than I thought to distinguish between the two within me. I forget to observe the difference in others most of the time because I’m involved in conversation. But this week I had an opportunity to “stand back” so to speak and delve a little deeper when I reacted to dinner options with family.  Dr. Bob recommended that we look words up in the dictionary so that we can be more knowledgeable of their meaning so I have started with these definitions…..]

From the dictionary

Personal Taste

A person’s taste is their choice in the things that they like or buy, for example their clothes, possessions, or music. If you say that someone has good taste, you mean that you approve of their choices.


Satisfying one’s conception of what is perfect; most suitable.

Existing only in the imagination; desirable or perfect but not likely to become a reality.

           Observation of family for dinner

When I offered to cook dinner, there could be no potatoes (that’s starch) because it was set up that the ideal was the keto diet; however, fat was perfectly acceptable. Everything had to be organic (and who could ever check out to see if no pesticides are used and if that was fact or a sales pitch). Same deal with eating beef, fish or  pork. Though I am avid against the mistreatment of animals, I recognize that I can’t do anything about it. I see that I have lived to this age without all these “shoulds” about food.

It has left me in a quandary whenever food is part of my social interaction. I have observed reaction within at the intense preferences and tried to see them as simply personal taste.

And as I have pondered these statements, I can see suggestion working as “ought to be’s” from all sorts of sources – internet, nutritionists, doctors, big business, friends, newspapers, magazines. Ah, who to believe and make an authority. Personal taste and listening to the body has been dismissed to accept suggestions which have then been turned into  beliefs of good and bad, right and wrong.

And so I found myself in this very situation this week about dinner. I value having my family for dinner.  As the “have tos” were stated, I decided to just observe and chuckle to myself at the “must have and dos” flitting around about every bit of the preparation as we were all preparing together in the kitchen. I, too, have preferences, but I decided that it was to my advantage and to the idea of contributing to a pleasant mood to allow them their ‘ideals’ on our weekly get togethers. I choose to respect their choices; and I discovered that in many cases, personal taste has not only become the ideal – but everyone around should see it the same way. 

I have many other days to eat as I prefer and to my personal taste without comment.

Somewhere throughout the years, the idea was also presented as playing the role of being invisible.  So I see this as practicing invisibility  and a way to be a good guest here on planet earth with the culture as it is today.

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Slow learners vs Fast learners

From Disidentifying Workshop at Jim’s

 CD 1 around 1 : 01

 [from Marsha…..Long ago when I started taking voice lessons, my mentor said he thought I had a learning disability.   I really took that to heart and believed it; but as I continued with the 48 tapes, I realized that I was trying to learn through much criticizm I had experienced from my father as I was growing up.   No matter what I played or sang, he would find fault.   As a result my throat would close up whenever I sang preparing for the onslaught of disapproval; but the desire to perform was greater than the fear of disapproval; and thanks to the teachings and my mentor, I did it anyway and was amazed when people said they loved my voice.  It took a while to accept that they meant what they were saying.  

And then I had a piano student who had trouble with her lessons.   She kept saying that her teachers in school said she was a “slow learner”.   She would come for a while and then quit, come for a while then quit.   I gave her what encouragement I could, but the script in her head was too strong.  She was unable to question what she had been told. 

So when I found this experiment Dr. Bob did with a teacher, I was thrilled.   I wish all teachers would be willing to run this experiment so that children could reach the epitome of potential and talent within them…..

So here goes with the experiment….]

One time in Albuquerque, I’ve worked with a schoolteacher. She wanted to get her master’s degree, and she didn’t feel she was wantin’ to write it, so I took on the chore for a few bucks to write the thing, and we have set up the experiment. It was on slow learning children. 

So we took the fastest learning children and the slowest learning children:  divided them into two reasonable groups for conversation. 

Now we told the ones that was fast learning that they would pass if they said, “I don’t know,” or answered correctly. But if they answered incorrectly, they would be flunked.

And we took the slow learning ones and told them if they answered anything, they would pass. The only time they wouldn’t get along is if they didn’t say anything. If you said, “How do you spell cat?” and he didn’t know and he said, “Four, five, seven,” why, he would get pass, see?

And so when the smart kids come along and one of em, you know, the teacher would ask something, he’d hold his hand up and he knows the answer. And he’d answer and she’d say,

“Are you sure that’s correct, you wanna stick with that?”

And he’d say, “Yeah.” 

She said, “Are you real sure?”

And he’d say, “No, I didn’t answer at all.” That was the smart one.

The slow ones could say anything. They got passed, anyway.

And you know, it completely reversed the slow learners and the fast learners – just by making them doubt whether their answers were correct – on the smart ones. 

So, I’ve delved into the not-I’s that have been working on me to set up the experiment. And  there was one that always come up and said, “Are you sure?” Okay? That’s a not-I, okay? Do watch him. He don’t mean a thing – he’s just another not-I. There’s a not-I down there that’s sayin’, “Are you sure?” (laughter) Try to throw doubt in.

Now what we are trying to observe, that as number one, when we objectively observe, you meet with tremendous opposition from the not-I’s, okay? They use every hypnotic trick in the game. And they will use “doubting,” try to instill doubt in I – that’s one of the better ways to hypnotize.

Would you say that we hypnotized all those kids in that classroom? Made them doubt their ability to answer the questions. Some of them you had to do three times before he would really doubt. We’d say, “Do you know the answer?” Let him answer now. “Are you sure that’s the right answer? And you remember what happened?” Now you’re trying. You say, “Are you real sure now?” But much less sure that time.

You say, “Are you real real sure, ____– do you wanna stick with that? Or you rather say you don’t know?”

“I don’t know.” (laughter)

You see, you can wreck his whole self confidence in a matter of seconds, all right?

Now the rest of the story is that we got em all back where they all were free to answer anything – we told them what the story was. And that teacher until this day has no slow learners in her class. They come in but they don’t go out as slow learners. ‘Cause nothing is made important down there. It’s a game.

But the minute we made it important that either they answer correctly or not all… They all begin to answer “Not at all,” you see.

So this is your little not-I that was coming along and hollerin’ what?  “Are you sure?”

(Now I understand?)

Right. You interpret correctly? Are you sure, Darrol?


[from Marsha   So what this is referring to is the not-I’s within that make us doubt ourselves.  I doubted my ability to sing and play music and when I began to have a lot of success in music, my father was never impressed or appreciated the effort I put into the quest.  Trying to get attention and approval from him was an impossible effort as was trying “please” him.   He had a whoppin’ lot of not’I’s in him which, of course, I finally come to realize. 

Dr. Bob said many times that there are no mistakes or failures, only what doesn’t work.  And we have in music what we call “woodshedding” and also a “no mistake” day.  So when I feel a need to be creative, I will sit at the piano and improvise – no goals.   Wonderful melodies start to emerge.  So fun!]

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Where is Happy and Happiness Idea

From Santa Ana – March 31, 1979

[From Marsha:  Four women I know when asked what makes them happy said shopping.  The income from being a local musician never afforded me that luxury, so I had to look elsewhere to define what happy was to me.   In transcribing the above tape, my teacher talked about how we are conditioned from birth to want nondisturbance and the way to get it is the six methods from the ”picture of man” he created to help us to see “self”.  So if you’re not familiar with those, please go to the ‘basic’ section of the website and check it out.”]

[From the tape of 3/31/79 Dr. Bob]

Now all of these families of not I’s in the picture of man come along as ideal methods to obtain what I want.  (those being complainer, sticker up for rights, pleaser, quoter of authorities, self improver and blamer).   I want this; but of course, we aren’t  recognizing it consciously, we didn’t say we wanted a certain amount – we want it all, huh, all of it.  (he’s talking about the four dual basic urges)

And we didn’t wanna pay anything for it – I’m entitled to it.  You’re just supposed to always approve of me with no effort on my part.  And you’re supposed to always give me attention; and I’m supposed to always be comfortable and if I’m not, where’s the pill, right quick, because I shouldn’t have to adapt.   (Adapt is talking about illness.)

Now when humans begen to see that they are –what they have heard the word “happy”.  Most of you have heard that word haven’t you?  Do you know what it means?  You haven’t the foggiest except that you don’t have it all the time. When is the time you think about you don’t have it?

But if you ever think about the word “happy”, you don’t quite have it.  You would be happy if you had thus and so, is that right?   Or if you could do such and such.

[From Marsha…I have observed that most people think happiness lies “out there” somewhere.  So I want to “get” happiness from “it” or “them”.  So I’m proposing an experiment or exercise, perhaps one could take this day and observe and make a list of how many times I felt happy and “what I was doing at the time”.   I have discovered , for me, that the happiness is in the ‘doing’ not necessarily in the ‘getting’. 

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Ride Through the Woods

[From Marsha…One of the ideas of the teaching was quite an eye-opener for me.   It is always of value for me to remember these precious ideas from time to time; so I thought I’d share this one with you.  Here is a clear paragraph on the subject.]

  (from Tape 8 of Basic Section of website)


One can observe the “self” continually being set into motion by similar situations in the environment. Something comes along and the “self” identifies it as “being the same as” because it is somewhat similar. One person is served a given food. Sometime or other in the past “one” had a similar food and it was tainted. One felt nauseated or was forced to eat it as a child. One says, “I can’t stand it–I don’t like it.” Now I observes this association; and as we keep track of “what does this remind me of,” one can see much that has been a limitation to the organism that has been experienced as limitation. It is no longer a limitation when one sees that it is a simple association that says “now is then.” Obviously, one sees that the “self” equates “now is then” and has a tendency to report to X what went on “then”–and that “then” is the same as what is happening “now.” It never is!

Seeing “What does this remind me of” in action.

One time I was traveling through the woods on the way to a gig.   The sax player was driving and also speeding.   Pretty soon here come the blue light; and, obviously he got a ticket.    Next week when we were on our way to that same gig, he was speeding again.   I got anxious and said, “You’re speeding.”   He said, “I know.”  Since we were doing the 48 basic tapes together, he decided that he was going to show me that now (on the way to the gig this week) was not the same as last week.   I predicted that we would get a ticket; and for as long as the gig went on and he speeded through the woods, we never got a ticket.   Though I’m not one to condone speeding, it is still a demonstration that I will remember to apply to other situations.  As a result, I watched the reminder week after week and when it didn’t happen again, the association finally quit.   I wasn’t particularly fond of the fear that came up in me every time we passed through.  

Another way of saying “what does this remind me of” is to look at associations.

My mother had associations, images, that were created in her regarding different foods that didn’t agree with her.  At times she got gas or a tummy ache.  When that happened, she dropped that food from her diet until she was down to carrot sticks, oatmeal, and a few other little tidbits — certainly not enough for optimum health.  So she was seeing the past discomfort and thinking “now is then” and it became quite a limitation to her meals.  So just because she had an upset tummy once, doesn’t mean that it would be every time, but she never tried the food again to find out whether it was the food or something else.   She might have been upset when she ate the food, the restaurant might have put some spice in there that didn’t agree with her; but perhaps if  she made it at home it would have been fine.  It may not have even been that food, but something she ate earlier.  I don’t presume to know what she “should have done”.   Sometimes situations need more information, or can be experimented again to see if the same thing happens like the ride through the woods.  

In the work, we are always encouraged to experiment with an idea; and certainly “What does this remind me of” and “associations” is a fun one to watch going on unconsciously in the self!

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Feeling Anxious and Fearful

From: Tuesday Night Talk on Reporting

If a man was going to invent something, he could never work on it unless he was free to have a bunch of experiments that wouldn’t work.

So if we wanted to invent something, paint a picture, write a story, learn an instrument, run a business of some sort or other, the first necessity is that we’re free to fail.  Then we are free to go ahead and do it.

In running an experiment or in any endeavor one wants to do, one has to be absolutely free to fizzle – FAIL.  Now the first rule that comes along if you’re interested in being successful at anything whether it is being happy, peaceful, or makin’ millions of dollars is to be free to fail because when you’re not free to fail, you can’t function.  You are trying to find all the ways to be safe; and there isn’t anything you might want to do where there isn’t some risk involved.    So if we’re free to fail at anything, then you discover you can function.

If you’re not free to fail, you have to take so many precautions you’ll never get started.  I heard of a man who wasn’t free to have any discomfort occur to him, so he begin to build a tower.  He kept building it up and building it up; but he could still see that danger could come from above, so he finally completely enclosed it over on top as a dome.  He had lots of bricks and mortar inside and he completely closed it over.  Now he couldn’t have any doors and windows in this thing because danger can come through those too, you know.  So of course, when he got it all sealed up — you can imagine that very shortly he used up all the air in there and he smothered!

Now if you are not free to take a risk, there is very little chance of doing anything of profit because profit is what you get paid for by taking a risk.  So the source of anxiety is basically the attempt to be non-disturbed.  When you start thinking about how you are going to avoid any possibility of disapproval, rejection or feeling insignificant what happens to you?

(I get anxious and sometimes that leads to sickness.)

But anytime you’re in the pit it’s because you’re afraid of taking a risk.  Now a man called me a little while ago and said that he was in a state of fear over something he needed to do.  So he was going to quit because he didn’t wanna be fearful.  That’s a bad thing to have, isn’t it?  Well now, did any of you just deliberately feel free to be fearful this week? So you can really do your thing – be as fearful as you can.  Really do the thing.   Betty said she really was free to be fearful and it just went away.

When you really set your mind to deliberately be anxious, the anxiety says “Well to hell with you   — you won’t run.”   It’s very freeing.    So you see it really hasn’t or isn’t any great power if one feels free to have a little fear; but somehow or other we have become very fearful of feeling fearful; and we get very angry about feelin’ angry; and we get very resentful about feeling a little resentment.  Now if you’re free to feel those things, what happens?

It’s really all right to feel fear; but you see the first thing when we feel a little touch of fear, we  begin – “How am I gonna rid of it right now!” — like it was the plague or something.  It really won’t hurt you.   You know it really doesn’t do a thing to you.  Have you ever been disappointed?  It didn’t kill you all these years. You’re still functioning, is that right?  So if you’re free to be disappointed, why it’s all right.  You ever been free to have any feeling you had?  I mean the ones that kind of let you know you really have an emotion, not the ones that you purr with when you’ve been well fed or something.

So perhaps that could be an experiment to run today and maybe even two or three days or a week.   We are all grown up adults now; and it’s very liberating when we discover that we can be perfectly free to feel any emotion.  They haven’t killed you or destroyed you or put wrinkles on your face or anything of the sort.

So all of a sudden instead of being fearful, you can be very serene.  But you know we fight fear.  Some of us eat and some of us drink and some of us smoke and some of us do some other things to keep from feeling fearful.

So are you perfectly free to feel fearful?  Well let’s start right now.  You’ve felt it; so if you’re gonna feel it, you might as well do it gracefully and politely.

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Hereditary Disease

From TNT “Acting and Feeling”

{from Marsha…..Long ago I was diagnosed with retinitis pigmatosa which is a deterioration of the rods and cones in the retina.  It is a slow degeneration and has proceeded as predicted.   The doctor told me it was a hereditary disease and created a lot of fear.   I lived with that fear of passing it on to my children and recently my eye doctor said it was not hereditary.   I felt such relief after living with the suggestion for so many years.    So in transcribing the above Tuesday night Talk, Dr. Bob says:….}

Question from the audience:

(Will you talk about hereditary disease because told that by my doctor’s.)

It was hereditary?

( Yes, how much does your own belief system count in these matters and could one alter that?)

Disease is a normal adaptation to your own state of stress.  Now the fact that the doctor you went to see couldn’t find out what was goin’ on; and he didn’t understand; and so in order to some way explain it to you when you kept sayin’ “Why did I get this?” he said it was hereditary.

But now if you carry that idea back for a while — if you inherited it from your grandmother, then she had to inherit it from her great grandmother or somebody back down the line then Adam was a sick old guy!   Howling laughter from the audience.

He was damn sick.   So let’s forget that one while we’re at it – without further noise about it, huh?

{from Marsha….After I also had a good laugh, I can’t tell you how much relief I felt.   How amazing a suggestion can get in there when we accept the medical profession as being infallible and turn our well-being over to an institution.}

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