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Breaking a Board

Somewhere between white belt and black belt, thirty-five years ago or so, I recall one promotional examination where the testing requirement from the grandmaster was for the student to break a one inch pine board with a simple reverse punch. The board was carefully held by two black belt students about as high as their solar plexus and I was given an opportunity to make sure the board was positioned to my satisfaction prior to my attempt at breaking it. A large audience of onlookers was present, consisting mostly of family, friends and martial arts students of varying belt levels a......
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Old Beat-Up Violin and Two Masters

In high school, learning to play a musical instrument was an elective requirement. The basic goal was to provide young students with a modicum of exposure to various acoustic arts by actively involving them with an opportunity to convert random noise into progressively more rule-governed audible sounds with musical tools of their choosing. I selected the violin and quickly discovered how extremely challenging it was to induce it to conform to my bidding. To my surprise and delight, the instructor, an elderly Jewish violinist, reminded me often how I seemed to have “an ear” uniquely attuned to the intricacies of this mar......
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“I Am Not A Man...”

For much of my professional career as a practicing clinical psychologist, I have articulated a sincere and explicit sentiment with virtually every adult female client and, usually by the end of the first session, that within the context of our professional relationship, “I am not a man but a doctor!” My reason has been to continually remind myself of what I will never know, as a man, about being female in the world! I am often fond of saying that “men live in the world of men but women live in the world of women and they must also live in the w......
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“PSYCHOBIOSOCIOGEOPOLITICOECONOMIC”

In my opinion, symptoms, typically, do not occur within a vacuum but, rather, within an ‘n’-dimensional, multi-latticed, multi-tiered, multi-multipled context! This multi-dimensioned context provides a crucial staging ground from within which, and out from which, the adaptive meaning, purpose and value of any given “symptom” becomes readily identifiable and, eventually, understandable, albeit, relative to its experienced context. The context is, simultaneously, one which is predicated upon a certain “consensual reality,” as well as, the “subjective experiential reality” of the individual (or group) afflicted by their unique or particular symptoms. Years ago, it occurred to me that an “effect” could, theoretically, be a result of a neces......
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Living with Regret

Regret is that state of being, which occurs either momentarily and/or for all eternity, in which the person living with regret, has chosen, of their own free will, to act or to behave in a manner, which results in a harm to self and/or to another. In other words, regret is generally an avoidable consequence when infractible behavior fails to occur. What might this mean to an individual who wants to live their life without regret? Do no harm! If you give your word, keep it. If you believe in something, stand for it, support it, fight for it. Walk the......
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How High is Up?

I was immediately hooked on philosophy when a graduate professor in the department of philosophy was forced by his department head to teach an introductory class due to the unexpected withdrawal from the academic commitment by an undergraduate itinerant instructor more than forty years ago. The graduate professor was irritated that he had been ordered to teach first semester freshman who were right out of high school and, who were, to his way of thinking, wholly incapable of thinking at a level barely exceeding those of their primate cousins just a mere 1% or so removed from the full complement of......
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“Secret Keeper!”

“Listen...” “Do you want to know a secret?” “Do you promise not to tell?” Well, I have a really terrific secret for you. I am a “secret keeper!” A real, dyed-in-the-wool secret keeper. I keep secrets, secret! Not every secret, but most every secret. If you are a danger to your self... If you are a danger to others... If you cannot take care of yourself... If you cannot provide for your daily basic needs... If you are abusing or neglecting minors under the age of 18 years of age... If you are abusing or neglecting seniors 62 years of age and older... If......
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"FINE"

  Doctor: “How are you?”Patient: “Fine. Doctor: “What would you like to talk about today?”Patient: “Nothing much.” Doctor: “How come?”Patient: “Because I’m fine.” Doctor: “What exactly do you mean by fine?”Patient: “I thought you’d never ask!”   “F” stands for fucked-up.”“I” stands for inconsolable.”“N” stands for nothingness.”“E” stands for empty.” “I’m fine!”“And how are you? Interestingly, the patient smiled when the doctor inquired as to what was meant by the use of the word, “fine.” Later it was admitted that the doctor, alone, had “passed the test” which “more than a dozen other doctors” had failed. The “test” was to see if the doctor had the authentic wherewithal to deeply and profoundly respect t......
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Good Servers

A “good server” provides a “good service” by filling a need and, thereby, rendering a valuable service “good and true.” “Good servers” provide “good service” and serve their end-user, client or customer very well, indeed! “Bad servers” leave a bad taste in the mouths of all those they fail to properly serve and none are well-served. Without “good servers” “good service” is not provided and goods or services will not be good. With “good servers,” “good service” is provided and goods and services will be good by all those who are served. “Good servers” are necessary to every service-delivery system, without which, the delivery system fails to deliver......
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