((My comments in double parentheses - Homer))
                         THE PURPOSE OF VIEWING
                               SARGE - 1
                             22 March 1991
           Copyright (C) 1994 Dr. Frank (Sarge) Gerbode M.D.
       Redistribution rights granted for non commercial purposes.
     (IRM's Fifth Annual International Conference took place near San
Francisco over the weekend of March 22nd-24th 1991 and was attended by
nearly 100 participants from as far away as Germany and Brazil.  Audio
tapes of each of the many fascinating talks and workshops are available
at a modest cost through the Institute.  The lead article in this issue
of the newsletter is taken from a transcript of the talk given on the
first day of the conference by Frank Gerbode, M.D., Director of the
Institute.  In it, Dr.  Gerbode provides a very clear and compact
description of the application of Metapsychology called "viewing".  As
an overview of the work to date of the Institute and it's many vital
contributors, I hope that you, our members, will find it to be as
important as did we who were able to hear it delivered "live" in March.)
     It's a good idea, from time to time, to consider the purpose of
what one is doing, and that's what I propose to do - to talk about the
purpose of viewing.  Time seems to be going by pretty fast these days.
It seems only yesterday that I stood here and gave a talk on the
philisophical underpinnings of Metapsychology.  And now it seems quite
appropriate to carry on from where I left off and to say what all that
was an underpinning to: namely, the entirety of the methodology we have
for helping people that we call viewing.  In this lecture, then, I shall
talk about viewing and what it can do for people.  It is possible to
talk about viewing at any number of levels.  To go into great detail
concerning the thousands of different procedures we can use would far
exceed the scope of this lecture.  These have been fully written up in
600 pages of textbook, 400 pages of JOM (Journal of Metapsychology)
articles, and close to 900 pages of course materials.  Nor do I wish to
confine myself to generalities about viewing.  Instead, I will try to to
strike a balance between these two extemes and provide enough detail for
flavor, while not exceeding my time limit.  At various conferences, we
have presented viewing mainly as a form of help that a trained
facilitator can give to someone in urgent need.  We have emphasized
Traumatic Incident Reduction (TIR) as a means of alleviating the severe
distress experienced Vietnam vets and others who have had experiences as
extremely traumatic.  And indeed - as many of us have experienced as
viewers, facilitators or both - this technique is extremely powerful.
Yet in reality TIR is only one of many powerful procedures we have in
viewing, and while impressive, the gains attainable from TIR are only a
small fraction of those attainable by using all of the many viewing
techniques that are available.  What I should like to do today,
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therefore, is to present a full overview of viewing, to give you a
fairly clear picture of what viewing is all about and what a viewer
might expect to gain from working her way through the full viewing
     Personal enhancement (self-improvement) can be seen as divided into
three stages, each of which is a prerequisite for the next.  In sequence
they are: Clearing - The handling of current disturbances and immediate
needs.  Discovery - The location and eradication of underlying causes of
disturbances and remaining needs.  Self-realization - addressing
ultimate aspirations; "spritual fulfillment": wishes.  In this talk, I
hope to show you that the viewing Curriculum follows this sequence and,
in broad outline, how it does so.
     Beyond physical needs such as food and shelter, what a person
mainly needs to accomplish, is the elimination of abberation from his
life.  Ideally, everyone should be happy with everyone else, as each
pursues his or her goals.  In practise, life for most of us falls far
short of the mark.  We experience negative feelings and emotions - hate,
pain, jealousy, grief: our thinking can be distorted or even delusional,
as when we grow paranoid about others' intentions or attitudes, or
overly pessimistic about our own abilities or worth; and our behavior
can be destructive.  Often, in a fit of rage or despair, we say or do
things we very soon come to regret.  These unwanted and contra-survival
feelings, thoughts, and behaviors are known as "abberations".  They tend
to fall into one of three categories:  Negative Feelings - Unwanted
emotions and uncomfortable feelings.  Cognitive Distortions - Delusions
and fixed ideas.  Distortions of Behavior - Compulsions, inhibitions,
dysfunctional behavior.  In the absence of abberations, we would have a
planet full of happy people who were basically happy, productive, and
loving and helpful to each other.  In their presence, we have war,
twisted relationships, and broken dreams - in short, the "normal" human
condition.  For some (as for PTSD survivors) it is worse than for
others, but everyone short of a sage of major dimensions has some degree
of aberration.  It is not other people who are the enemy, though it may
seem so at times; it is aberration that is the enemy, and that is what
we are determined to handle with viewing.
     In order to understand aberration and its cause, we have to take a
look at the nature of time.  Time is often conceptualized as a "never-
ending stream".  Subjectively, however, time is divided up into finite
chunks, or "periods", each of which is defined by an ongoing activity.
A person can speak of "the time I sang Chistmas carols" or "the time
when I was in college".  Any activity has a "cycle" associated with it:
it has a point at which it starts, a point during which it is continuing
or ongoing, and a point at which it ends.We call such cycles "activity
cycles".  A period of time extends between the starting point and the
ending point of any cycle.  An activity cycle is brought into being by a
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person's intention.  The cycle starts when we formulate an intention,
goes on for as long as we have that intention, and ends only when we
cease to have that intention.  Some periods of time are in the past
because the intention connected with them has ended.  Others are in the
present because the intentions connected with them are neither fulfilled
nor unmade.  In fact, our "present time" in not an infinitesimal point
lying between past and future but a set of periods of time that are
defined by activity cycles that are ongoing and incomplete because we
continue to intend them.
     Now, it seems that we do not have an unlimited capacity to intend
things.  We seem to be endowed with a limited number of "intention
units".  In other words, we can only do a limited number of things at
the same time.  If a person has an excessive number of incomplete
activities - if, in other words, his present time is cluttered with a
large number of different ongoing periods of time - he has a relatively
small number of free "intention units" with which to engage in new
activities or pursue current activities.  When that person completes or
ends a number of activity cycles, he will find he has more "intention
units" available to pursue current goals or to create new ones.
     Traumatic incidents contain not only pain but also very strong
intentions - intention to get away, intentions to fight back, as well as
intentions to blot out the entire incident from awareness, which
conflicts with the intention to remain aware of it.  In fact, when one
experiences a trauma one has a choice - one has the option of either
confronting it fully and feeling the pain, or of trying in some way to
block one's awareness of it.  In the first case, one allows oneself to
be aware of the incident and also of the intentions that exist in the
incident.  These intentions can then either go to completion or be
consciously un-made, and the incident becomes a past incident.  But in
the second case, the intention formed with the incident are repressed
along with the incident itself.  And the fact is, you can only stop
doing something when you are aware of doing it!  The incident itself and
the intention it contains continue to exist as ongoing, incomplete
cycles.  Such traumatic incidents, then, float along as part of the
person's present time, and as such, may continue to affect him
negatively.  We say such incidents carry "charge" - "charge" being
defined as "repressed, unfulfilled intention".
     The delicate balance between the decision to be aware of an
incident and the decision to be unaware of it can be upset when
something happens that reminds a person of the past trauma, when there
is some similarity of theme or content between what is going on now and
what happened in the traumatic incident.  For a vet who has suffered
severe combat trauma, physical or psychological, the sounds of a
helicopter, the presence of a tree line or loud noises can trigger acute
anxiety, and he can begin to feel, think, and act as he did in Vietnam
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as, unbeknownst to him, the traumatic incident is brought closer to
     When this occurs, we say that the traumatic incident has been
triggered or '"restimulated", and that which causes the restimulation
(the loud noise, say, or tree line) is called the "restimulator".  The
incident in which the restimulation occurs - if, as is usually the case,
it's repressed - can then itself function as a traumatic incident and
itself be restimulated.  Indeed, whole sequences of traumatic incidents
exist, connected by common themes.
     To take the above example, suppose the Vietnam vet has had the
experience of seeing a buddy shot by a young Vietnamese guerilla.  This
throws him into a rage.  At the same time, there is the sound of a
helicopter, the taste of chewing gum, the loud noises of guns firing,
the presence of children and a tree line.  Some of the content of this
incident is directly traumatic, but there is other content as well that
is associated with the trauma.  This incident may then form the "root"
for a sequence of incidents ("Sequents"), in which the root (or other
sequents) are restimulated, perhaps years later.
     During an afternoon barbeque, he is chewing gum, sees some
children, and hears a loud noise.  He unaccountably flies into a rage.
Suppose, at the same time, a dog is barking and there is the smell of
barbeque smoke.  He is being unkowingly or knowingly reminded of the
root incident.  If the earlier root incident had not occured, the
incident at the barbeque would not be a traumatic one.  He would,
perhaps, just be startled.  The intensity of the reaction stems from the
earlier trauma.  And because of the intensity of the feeling in the
second incident, the vet will probably repress it as well.  It, in turn,
then, may be restimulated in the future - by the sound of dogs barking
or the smell of barbeque smoke.
     Many sequents may, in turn, be added to the sequence, until, in
time, the vet will find himself responding with rage and inappropriate
behavior to a wide variety of stimuli.  The rage, the panic attacks, the
thoughts that other people are dangerous, are almost invariably
inappropriate and represent forms of aberration caused by restimulation
of past traumas.  As soon as we probe to find the source of aberration,
then, we run head-on into past pain.  In addition, he will have other
sequences of traumatic incidents that have other themes, and some of
these sequences will have incidents in common, so the result is an
interconnecting network of past traumas - some currently restimulated,
some not - which we call the traumatic incident network or "Net".
     "Net" is truly an appropriate term, since it is this structure that
captures the individual and denies his freedom.  When we respond to our
present surroundings with distorted thoughts, emotions, or behavior, we
are not fully here and now.  We are, to a certain degree, fixed in a
past moment of time that was traumatic and is responding to present time
as though what went on in the past were still going on.  If we could see
things as they really are in the here and now, we would probably be able
to deal with the situation adequately, unless the situation happens to
be, in itself, a highly traumatic incident.  Fortunately, such traumas
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are extremely rare in normal life.  What makes them seem more common is
the phenomenon of restimulation.
Even though many sequences of traumatic incidents may remain
undischarged, at any particular time they may happen not to be
triggered, as when we go on vacation or when things are going well in
life. When we are not being restimulated and are present in the here and
now, we experience a type of clarity - an ability to see things as they
are, a calm frame of mind, and a generally good ability to cope with
things because we are neither misled by distortions of thought or
perception, not compelled or inhibited in our behavior by restimulation
of past traumas. A person in such a state is said to be undisturbed, or
     This does not mean he has attained any great state of enlightenment
or that he has no aberration. It only means he is not currently
disturbed; his past traumas are not currently in a state of
restimulation. Hence, for instance, one who goes on vacation or out to a
movie may feel quite happy or content for the moment. But the continuing
presence of past unresolved trauma makes him prone to being disturbed by
their restimulation - if not immediately, then perhaps in a few minutes,
hours, or days.
     Many people, if not most, go about in an almost continual state of
disturbance - one thing or another is continually triggering past
traumas and thus "bothering" them.  This is, in fact, the "human
condition", the "vale of tears" that life is supposed to be.  In the
middle of this ocean of misery may appear occasional islands of peace
and happiness, which are highly treasured.  But for many, having that
state of clarity, peace, and happiness on a more- or-less permanent
basis is rather unthinkable.  This view may be expressed as the view
that "life's a bitch", and there can even be a sense of heroism in this
sort of viewpoint.
     Although almost anything can cause restimulation, disturbances come
in a finite number of discrete "flavors":
     * Worries and Problems
     * Misdeeds and Withholds
     * Upsets
     * Restimulated traumatic incidents
     One type of disturbance occurs when I find that some action or
intention of mine meets resistance or opposition, or when two parts of
my world fail to align with each other in some important way that I feel
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I have to do something about right away.  Characteristic of this kind of
disturbance is that I am uncertain of what to do or how things are going
to turn out.  If I am about to take an important test, I may be worried
about how it is going to turn out or whether I am studying enough or
studying the right things.  Perhaps there is an important business
decision that needs to be made right away, but I am having difficulty in
deciding what to do because the consequences on both sides seems
I can become quite disturbed if I feel I've done something cruel or
unethical to another. The person-centered viewpoint is important, here,
because something that might not seem like a misdeed to another might
seem terrible to me, not necessarily for rational reasons.  I recall
feeling very guilty about getting into prep school and medical school
because I felt others might be more deserving than I, and that my own
successful application would ruin their chances. The fact that I ended
up being one of the better students eventually made me feel a bit
better, but that took quite awhile.
     Some of the most disturbing misdeeds are those that I withold from
others.  In a way, this kind of disturbance is a combination of misdeed
and a worry.  I have done something that was wrong, and I am worried
about whether someone else might have found out about it.  This kind of
disturbance can really put a person through the wringer, and one is
often quite relieved to confess these witholds in a safe environment and
then to observe that the sky does not fall down and that one continues
to survive.
     People naturally want their relationships with others to be
characterized by communication, mutual understanding, and friendliness
or affection.  These three factors - communication, comprehension, and
affection - add up to "communion" (not meant in a religious sense), and
whenever there is a drop of one or more of these components of
communion, an upset ensues.  Say my son has been regularly calling me
every Monday to chat and then fails to call for a couple of Mondays.  Or
I have an argument with someone and we aren't speaking to each other.
This drop in communication will cause an upset.  People can also get
upset by physical objects or situations where there is a sudden
appearance of pain or a sudden diminishment of control or understanding.
I can get upset if my car breaks down or if I suddenly get ill.
Although one could argue that any disturbance could be regarded as an
instance of the restimulation of a traumatic incident, some disturbances
are quite explicitly so. Here we have the "PTSD" phenomenon, where the
person is aware of a specific trauma or traumas that are being
restimulated, and they are quite overtly "out of present time" and "in
the incident". A person who is still in mourning over the loss of a
loved one or a person still in the shock from a brush with death can be
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said to have this kind of disturbance.
     The handling for such disturbances is quite straightforward,
although it is sometimes a little time-consuming.  Using Traumatic
Incident Reduction (TIR), you simply discharge the incident, along with
any earlier, similar traumas that may crop up.  This is the technique we
spoke of at the convention on PTSD sponsored by the Int.  Society for
Traumatic Stress Studies last October in New Orleans, and that Chris
Christensen talked about yesterday.  And it is the one Gerald French
will be teaching in the week following this conference.
Although TIR is very simple to do, it can be quite profound in its
positive effects on the viewer.  Yet, used in clearing (when it is
called "Remedial TIR"), it is really just a way of handling a
disturbance.  Another use for TIR will be presented later as "General
TIR".  Disturbances are the main things that a person is immediately
concerned with in life; they are usually the things a person will come
to a facilitator to handle.  These are what we think of as causing
"stress": severe shocks and losses, interpersonal upsets, difficulties
with making decisions, internal and external conflicts, guilt and self-
recriminations, and the fear and expectations of humiliation, rejection,
abandonment.  And these are the elements of life that motivate people to
come in and seek relief as viewers.
     Some therapeutic approaches (such as psycho-analysis) tend not to
address these everyday issues directly; they assume that when their
underlying causes are found, these disturbance will naturally cease to
occur.  There is some truth to that idea, but the fact remains that one
cannot find underlying items until the "overlying" ones are addressed
The Net is layered in such a way that some parts of it are more
accessable - easier to view - than others. These more accessable parts
(such as disturbances) obscure the less accessable parts and therefore
must be addressed first.
     Viewing and understanding any material has the effect of making it
more "transparent".  This holds true whether the subject matter being
viewed is one's case or, say, a foreign language.  When I try to read a
German book, my attention goes onto the written words that I see on the
page and stops there.  My relative lack of understanding of German makes
the writing "opaque".
     As I improve my understanding of German, the words become more
transparent. My attention penetrates the words, and the meanings begin
to shine through. When I become a fluent reader of German, I am
generally no longer conscious of the written word at all; I am not even
aware that I am reading German. Rather, I just absorb the meaning
"directly", as I do when I read English.  So it is with the Net. When I
first address this, it seems that I can only penetrate it's outside. My
attention is fixed on various upsets and other disturbances at its
periphery. But as I examine and come to understand these disturbances,
                                                                  PAGE 8
they begin to lose their opacity, and underlying incidents begin to make
themselves evident.  Eventually, as I attain greater and greater
understanding of the Net, I can penetrate to it's deeper regions.
In reality, however, I am not located outside my Net but at its very
center.  The reason why disturbances are the first elements I can be
aware of is that, being the most peripheral, they are the elements from
which I am first capable of differentiating myself. While viewing
disturbances, I am still failing to distinguish myself from the deeper
elements of the Net. As I progress through the Curriculum, I become
aware of and differentiate myself from deeper and deeper elements, so
these begin to become apparent to me as well. By viewing more and more
elements of my environment, I become more and more aware of what is and
what is not me, and I begin to resolve the confusions that have existed
between the real me and identities with which I have subconsciously
entangled. As I continue this process of viewing and self-
differentiation, I am able to view and differentiate myself from
elements that are very close to the center.
     Not surprisingly, the closer we get to the core of the Net, the
closer we get to our basic identities and characteristics. At this
level, we find "stacks", each stack being a series of pairs of opposing
identities and purposes ("dichotomies") piled up on top of each other.
It is on top of these basic structures that the entire edifice of the
Net is built. By enabling a viewer to eliminate these stacks, we help
him to eradicate the basis on which the Net rests and to become the
stably happy, powerful, loving person he wants to be.
The Curriculum can also be viewed as a way of addressing fixed or frozen
"intention units". A person is in a less-than-optimal state largely
because many of his intention units are trapped in various disturbances
- upsets, worries, witholds, or misdeeds - or in past traumatic
incidents. Personal vitality or "power" can be measured by the number of
intention units we have available to spend.
     When intention units become trapped or frozen - as happens during
traumatic incidents or when we are disturbed - we thereafter have fewer
available intention units, hence less power.  There is a limit to the
number of things we can attend to at any one time, and there is also a
limit to our ability to exert our violition in a large number of areas
at one time.  So we could speak of "attention units" and "violition
units", but we will instead speak generally of "intention units", which
includes both.
     Since the Net is constructed in the same general way for everyone,
it can best be addressed by following an appropriate sequence of action,
rather than by randomly trying to address elements of aberration or by
only following the viewer's attention and interest.  The Curriculum used
to address the Net is thus divided into sections.  Each section is
preparation for later sections, so you must do them in proper order,
completeing each one to a point of major improvement before moving on to
the next.  These actions occur in a logical order.  What follows is a
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brief account of each section.  The Curriculum is divided into two major
     1.  The Primary Curriculum
     2.  The Core Curriculum
     The Primary Curriculum is called "Primary" because it is done
first; the Core Curriculum is so called because it deals with matters
that are very close to the core of a person's identity.
     The Primary Curriculum starts with Stress Reduction and extends
through the Rightness Section.  It is concerned with stripping away
charge contained in the disturbances and traumatic incidents that form
the outer part of the traumatic incident network or "Net".
The easiest thing for a person to confront is what he is already
confronting and is interested in handling. This is what lies at the
periphery of the Net. Thus, in the first section of the Curriculum, you
are doing clearing. You do not attempt to direct the viewer's attention
to discovery of issues he is not already concerned with.  Instead, you
take issues his attention is already on and reduce charge so that he can
release those issues (cease paying attention to them compulsively).
     Stress Reduction is the first part of what we can do to help
someone. All the work we do with PTSD survivors, all the work that can
so rapidly help people to feel better, is really only clearing. From one
viewpoint, it is an extremely valuable service that we can provide to
others - often, quite literally, a lifesaver. From another viewpoint, it
is really only a preparation for a deeper, longer-term sort of work -
the work of discovery.
This type of work is sometimes, in the short term, not as spectacular as
the clearing work. Results may not be as immediately apparent as those
one might experience in running out a 'hot' traumatic incident.
Discovery tends to be characterized by a number of hours of steady
progress with seemeingly small successes, followed by sudden
"breakthroughs" as a major chunk of charge falls away. It can thus
require more patience, since immediate results are not always
     That shouldn't be a problem if the Stress Reduction was done
peoperly, since the really hot issues should have been cooled down
considerably before one moves onto the Help Section and other sections.
Some viewers, however, may make the very major mistake of hurrying
through the Primary Curriculum because they want to get to the really
"interesting" stuff further along.  That's a mistake because even though
traumatic material isn't currently restimulated, there are still
intention units tied up in it, and the more of these you can reclaim,
the better.  The fact is, with viewing as with anything else, what you
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get out of it depends on what you put into it.  But if you go into it
with the attitude of wanting to find and reduce as much charge as
possible, you will get excellent results.  You will experience many
revelations as you discover the long-term patterns that determine the
structure of your life.
     After the underbrush has been cleared away a bit and the viewer is
able to be comfortable in a viewing session and direct his attention
where he wants to direct it, and before the viewer is ready to embark on
major actions that can provide permanent case change, it is crucial for
him to handle any charge on the issues of help and control.  These are,
of course, important central issues in life, but additionally, in our
campaign to thoroughly discharge the Net, we must take into account the
fact that every viewing procedure involves both help and control.  The
viewer has to be able to both give and accept help and control before he
can be properly engaged in viewing.  The Help Section contains a number
of procedures which address these issues.  Many of them are called
"objective procedures".  They are concerned with enabling a person to be
more comfortable being in the "here and now".  The effect of
restimulation of past incidents is to tend to pull a person out of the
present into the past.  The present may even seem forbidding or
uncomfortable if it has been too much confused with the past.  Objective
procedures demonstrate to the viewer that here and now is a perfectly
fine place (and time) to be.
     Having contacted the here and now, the next step is to help the
viewer feel comfortable confronting his past.  You select incidents that
are pleasant and definitely non-traumatic as those that are easiest to
handle.  It sometimes comes as a revelation to people that there are
parts of the past that were pleasant.  An ability to spot the pleasant
times between the traumas helps delineate those traumas more clearly.
Otherwise there is the danger, in looking at past traumas, that the
entire past may seem wedged together as one immense traumatic incident.
That can make it hard to separate out individual traumas for handling.
     After the viewer has become comfrotable being in touch with the
here-and-now (in the Help Section) and with parts of his past (in the
Recall Enhancement Section), his next task is to feel comfortable
getting in touch with the facilitator and with other people.  It is
crucial that there be a clean and secure communication channel between
the facilitator and the viewer.
     Anyone who has done Communication Excercises or the Communication
Workshop is also aware of the importance of being able to communicate
well with others.  The Communication Section deals with emotional charge
on the subject of communication itself, because some problems with
communication stem not from lack of expertise in communicating but with
past traumas and issues relating to communicating.
                                                                 PAGE 11
     This section improves communication by specifically addressing this
charge.  Also, many problems, worries, upsets, and of course witholds
are directly caused by a failure to communicate, and so long as we
cannot readily communicate, these disturbances will continue to crop up
in our lives.  The next three sections handle relatively light areas of
charge - disturbances not heavy traumas.  They go one layer deeper into
the Net.
     Once a viewer has established contact with his present (Help
Section), with his past (Recall Enhancment Section), and with his
facilitator and other people (Communication Section), the next thing for
him to do is to work on clearing up the main topics of the principal
disturbances in some depth.  As a result of doing these sections, the
handling of disturbances obtained in Pre-Session Clearing and in Stress
Reduction becomes more stable.  The viewer will have looked at the
subject matter of each disturbance very thoroughly and will thus be much
less likely to be affected by that type of disturbance in the future.
     The first type of disturbance to be addressed is that of worries
and internal conflicts, i.e., "problems".  It is important to deal with
problems, because being fixed in a problem greatly inhibits future gain.
That is why worries - problems in the here and now - are handled as part
of Pre-Session Clearing.  And that is why a more thorough address to the
whole area of problems is included as a major section of the Curriculum.
As a result of doing this section, the viewer is much better able to
resolve problems; he is no longer irresolute.
     The next type of disturbance to be addressed is that of misdeeds
and witholds - the source of guilt and hostility.  Guilt and hostility
arise when a person cannot forgive and achieve reconciliation with
himself or others after certain misdeeds have occured.  Guilt and
hostility mainly spring from a person's own misdeeds, which he has then
witheld, or from charge connected with others' misdeeds.  A person
commits a misdeed when he has been unable to resolve a problem in a more
constructive fashion.
     Unwanted situations, when encountered, must be handled in some way
or other.  Ideally, they are handled by confronting, understanding, and
communicating, creating a resolution that is optimal for all concerned.
Being basically good, a person will naturally act in the best way he can
for the good of all, but if he is weak in his ability to solve problems,
he will feel "forced" to commit misdeeds.  Therefore, handling misdeeds
and the guilt connected with them is not optimal without first
addressing problems.  Completing this section should result in a major
reconciliation, both with others and with oneself.
     People who are unable to communicate, resolve problems, and thus to
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avoid commiting misdeeds are more or less continually upset in life.
Upsets are a third kind of disturbance that may need to be handled at
the start of a session.  An upset occurs when there is a sudden
departure from what is wanted or expected.  Hence an upset and an
unwanted change can be regarded as one and the same thing.  By the end
of this section, the viewer has had a thorough going disturbance
handling and a release of lighter incidents.  He should be stable and
resilient - able to withstand change and upsets well and to bounce back
rapidly afterwards.  Here, he comes to the end of that part of the
Curriculum that concerns itself with the periphery of the Net, and he is
ready to move closer to the Core.
     The first step of moving closer to the core is to handle some of
the root incidents on which the disturbances are based, i.e., to handle
deep-seated traumatic incidents.  In the Stress Reduction Section, we
handle any traumatic incidents that are obviously and acutely in a state
of restimulation.  But there are many other sequences of traumatic
incidents that are not currently restimulated but could become
restimulated in the future under certain circumstances.  In General TIR,
when these incidents and sequences are discovered and discharged, the
root cause of many difficulties and disturbances will have been
considerably alleviated.  When handled with General TIR, such traumas
are discharged and cannot be restimulated in the future.
     Up to this point, the viewer has been mainly dealing with "masses"
- uncomfortable feelings and disturbances that have been restimulated.
Having handled a great deal of mass at this point, he is better able to
tackle significance without becoming embroiled in the mass.  So he is
ready to straighten out his belief system, i.e., his concepts and facts.
     Cognitive therapists have long held that cognitive disturbances of
various kinds - invalid ways of thinking - are a major source of
unhappiness in life.  They use various techniques to locate and correct
false or distorted ideation, and the result can, for instance, be an
improvement over a severe depression.  It is true that there seems to be
a sort of triadic relationship amongst feelings or emotions, thoughts,
and behavior.  These are the three things that are capable of being
abberated, resulting in negative feelings, delusions, and automatisms,
respectively.  Theoretically, one could seek a resolution to a viewer's
difficulties in any of one of these three areas.
     By reeducation and behavioral prescriptions, we can demonstrate to
the viewer that he is capable of doing certain things that he perhaps
has not realized he can do.  With TIR and other parts of the Primary
Curriculum, we can ameliorate negative feelings, and we have also, to a
degree, straightened out some thinking along the way.
     But at this point, we address concepts and beliefs directly and
intensively.  It is easier to handle the bulk of the cognitive material
after the negative feelings have been resolved, because it seems that it
                                                                 PAGE 13
is partially the emotional pain or the threat of such pain that holds
the distorted ideas in place.  The distortions often sort themselves out
when the pain is ameliorated, but some distortions remain by sheer force
of habit, and when the pain is alleviated, these distortions are easier
to correct.
Like anybody else, the viewer, is of the opinion that he is right in
what he believes.  Otherwise, he wouldn't believe it.  But he can be
righter.  Wrongness can becaused by misconception, false data, or fixed
ideas.  This section addresses all three.  Misconceptions are
misinterpretations of written or spoken language.  Using the procedures
we call "Word Clearing" and "Subject Clearing", we can trace down and
correct misconceptions.  And with a procedure called "Data Correction",
it is possible to locate and correct false data.
     Finally, because of pain, force and confusion, a person has siezed
on certain ideas as aberrated cardinal points, central to his belief
system.  These ideas are not changeable by reasoning alone because they
are held in place by force - by an unwillingness or inability to
confront certain things.  The work that has been done up to this point
on the Primary Curriculum has eliminated enough force to permit the
viewer to address fixed ideas directly.  If fixed ideas are not
explicitly addressed, they tend to remain in place by force of habit,
despite the fact that the factors that originally caused them to become
fixed have been eliminated.  In this section, the viewer becomes aware
of what his fixed ideas are and acquires the ability to change his mind
about them.  The result of doing so is that the viewer is actually more
right and doesn't need to assert his rightness so much.
     The Core Curriculum is the second part of the General Curriculum.
In a sense, the seven sections that make up the Primary Curriculum are
just a setup for the real work of handling issues at the core of the Net
- core identities, and goals.  Yet the viewer will realize major
noticeable gains in life - almost as a "side-effect" of doing the
Primary Curriculum.
     At this point, the viewer has addressed various categories of
disturbances, discharged a number of traumatic incidents, handled fixed
ideas, and gotten closer to realizing who he really is.
     Now, in the "Identity Section", he is ready to proceed to handle a
deeper layer of the Net - the layer, quite close to himself, that has to
do with identities and purposes.  To address this very deep layer, we
use an elegant procedure developed by Bill Nichols called "Unstacking",
which deals with elements we call "stacks" that lie at the very core of
the Traumatic Incident Network.  Stacks are sets of deep-seated but
conflicting purposes and identities.  The Identity Section allows a
viewer to identify the basic identities and purposes in which he has
been "fixed", and enables him to move out of them, as well as to
discharge opposing identities and purposes.  When all such identities
and purposes are discharged, a person is free to simply be himself and
to pursue his true purposes.
                                                                 PAGE 14
     In the course of his viewing, a person gradually eliminates more
and more aberration and charge from his case.  At the current state of
our knowledge, it may be too much to ask to expect a viewer to be able
to eliminate every scrap of charge and never again to be subject to any
form of aberration.
     Such an attainment, though theoretically possible, would be
tantamount to the achievment of a high degree of sainthood, and, to my
knowledge, no such saints have been created at this writing.  We
commonly observe, however, that at a certain point in a viewer's
Curriculum, she will reach a Turning Point at which a marked change has
occurred in her relationship to her case and in view of her own
     Prior to reaching this Turning Point, the viewer is susceptible to
becoming immersed in her aberrations.  At those times of immersion,
while dramatizing or experiencing negative feelings she is unable to
remain conscious of herself as a being seperate from the aberration.
Rather, she is being the aberration - being her case.  After reaching
the Turning Point, the viewer has attained the ability to be aware that
her aberrated actions and negative feelings are coming from her case and
are seperate from her.
This realization gives a certain amount of control over her case.  The
balance has shifted, such that even when her case is restimulated she
now has more control over her case than it has over her.  In summary,
before the Turning Point the viewer:
     * Is liable to become completely immersed in her case.
     * Is not generally aware that she is experiencing or manifesting
aberration, when that, in fact, is what is occurring.
     * Has no clear concept of herself as a being separate from her mind
or case.
     * Is mostly the effect of her case when she is disturbed.
After the Turning Point, the viewer:
     * Does not become completely immersed in her case.
     * Is aware when she is manifesting or experiencing aberration.
     * Has a clear concept of herself as a being separate from her mind
and her case.
     * Is mostly causative over her case, even when disturbed.
     A viewer may reach the Turning Point at any point in the
Curriculum, and that doesn't mean she is finished with viewing.  You
                                                                 PAGE 15
will have noticed, however, that the Curriculum is laid out in such a
way that deep-seated identities are addressed in the Identity Section,
near the top.  The likelihood is that if the viewer does not reach the
Turning Point early on, she will have by the time she completes the
Identity Section.  If not, she can always reach the Turning Point on
another cycle through the Curriculum.
     Up to this point, what has been done is first clearing, then
discovery.  Once the forces of aberration are well under control, the
viewer has handled her major needs, so far as her case is concerned.
She should be comfortable in life and handling it well, doing well in
her work and having harmonious interpersonal relationships.  She should
be free of negative emotions, too, and pretty clear-headed.  At this
point - and only at this point - the stage is set for positive gain, for
real self-realization or spiritual growth.  Spiritual growth could be
defined as what a person naturally pursues once her needs are met.
     There are two kinds of desire: needs and wishes.  Some things we
may desire, but if we don't get them, we do not suffer physical or
mental pain.  I'd love to have a Lear Jet, but if I don't get it, I can
still be perfectly comfortable.  On the other hand, I need things like
oxygen, food, and shelter, because if I don't get them, I suffer pain
and discomfort.
     So a need is a desire for something, the absence of which results
in pain or discomfort.  A wish is a desire for something the absence of
which does not result in pain or discomfort.
We are compelled towards the fulfillment of our needs by a threat of
pain, but our wishes are freely chosen.  And amongst our wishes is the
wish to attain self-realization or spiritual fulfillment.  In India, a
person traditionally spends the first part of his life learning what he
needs to survive, the second part achieving success in his life career,
and once all that has been achieved, he goes off in middle age on his
spiritual quest.
     Life is a wonderful teacher, and no doubt the pain that we
experience teaches us various "karmic lessons", but the point is that we
must learn these lessons and transcend them before we embark on the
higher spiritual path.  The "spiritual quest" is all too often
undertaken as an escape from the pain of the material world, as a way of
not having to confront and handle that pain.  Essentially, people want
to graduate from life without having learned what life intended to
teach.  That doesn't work well in the public school system, and I
beleive it doesn't work well on the spiritual path either.
     In fact, a flight from the rigors of life and a consequent
compulsion toward a religious or spiritual pursuit can result in all the
bad things that have been attributed to religions: cultishness and
fanaticism.  Religous devotees are driven.  And what drives them?  The
                                                                 PAGE 16
need to escape into a fog of religiosity from pain that they are
unwilling to confront and handle.  That, in my view, is not true
spirituality or self-realization.  True self-realization is surely a
path towards awareness, not a form of anaesthesia.
     Although spiritual insight seems to be an all-but-inevitable "side
effect" of viewing, in its current state of development, viewing does
not provide any direct motion toward spirituality.  Perhaps we will move
in that direction in the future.  But viewing does provide an excellent
preparation for spiritual growth.  It provides the clarity and quietness
of mind that is a prerequisite for any true spiritual endeavour.  And at
this point, having achieved that clarity and quietness, the individual
will naturally provide his own impetus towards spirituality.
     What viewing can do is to release the force and duress that
prevents an individual from expressing his true nature, which is (in my
view) essentially a spiritual one.  And spirituality - as expressed in
the desire to help others and the desire to achieve communion with the
world and with other beings - is surely the true aspiration of an
unburdened spirit.
     ---- You may obtain further information about Metapsychology
Viewing, or get help locating an IRM facilitator/IRM affiliated-center
near you by contacting the IRM main office:
     431 Burgess Drive
     Menlo Park, CA. 94025. U.S.A
     +1 (415) 327-0920 PHONE
     +1 (415) 325-0389 FAX
     This article is reprinted from:
     The Newsletter of The Institute For Research in Metapsychology
Volume IV, Issue 1 Spring 1991 (reprint) This article is Copyright (c)
1991, 1993 by The Institute For Research in Metapsychology (IRM).
     Sarge Gerbode
Homer Wilson Smith           This file may be found at
homer@rahul.net              ftp.rahul.net/pub/homer/act/SARGE1.MEMO
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