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Scott --

I think it's admirable to share your thoughts and suggestions on a topic that affects so many of us. I heartily agree with you that everyone's experience will be different. The terms "stress" and "anxiety" are not very crisply defined. (They may be more narrowly defined for clinicians, but your post is not a clinical one, is it?) There are many possible reasons a person may feel something they would label stress or anxiety. There are equally diverse methods people use to cope with these feelings. Some methods are generally more effective than others, and as you say, some methods may work better for one person than another. It's great that you have found a method that works for you, and that you are able and willing to share it with us. And if someone is struggling with stress, it's certainly worth a shot for them to try your approach. And if that doesn't work, try something else.

Certainly many volumes have been written about the topic of stress and anxiety, enough to fill a few shelves in the bookstore. Taking the broader topic of dealing with what we might call "mental bad habits", there is even more literature. I will share that the vein of research that I have found most fascinating is neurolinguistic programming, or NLP for short. One of the big themes in this approach is that our brains tend to follow patterns (habits, if you like), and that one can purposefully intervene to change one's patterns into more useful ones. Your examples are right on. You noticed one type of pattern -- a snowball effect of negative thoughts, leading to undesirable states of mind -- and you decided to change it. You found a cue to let yourself know when you are drifting into this state (a necessary step at first, until the new way of thinking becomes habitual), and you found a new pattern of thought to replace the old one, one that leads to a more desirable state of mind.

One of the biggest benefits (to me) of my experience with NLP is an appreciation for just how diverse people can be inside their heads. I imagine that we all have a tendency to assume that other people think like us or view the world like we do. And one source of stress is being daily frustrated by the fact that they don't. It was quite the experience for me to learn that some of my fellow human beings really do experience the world in ways fundamentally different from mine, and given their life experience, for apparently good reasons. Though I still get frustrated at times, I do have more sympathy (or is it empathy?) for them than I used to.

Blessings.

Sorry, that should be addressed to "Michael", not "Scott". Perhaps I fixate on last syllables of last names!

Here I go again recommending books. If you are really interested in finding out more about words and their spiritual meanings such as sympathy and empathy check out "beyond the dream" by Dr Thomas Hora and his teachings. His website is PAGL and he is a worthwhile read especially when it comes to words and their spiritual implications.

It was Dr Hora’s teachings that allowed me to see the causal correlation between ignorance and suffering something most Buddhists do not see, as most Buddhists teach that suffering is due to attachment, craving, and grasping, which are symptoms of ignorance, not the root cause of most of our suffering.

I don’t recommend becoming a follower of Dr Hora’s teachings as it appears to lead to intellectualism for many of his followers something he teaches against but then look at the Buddhists, the Buddha I have read advised his followers to be open to new discoveries but most his followers have paid little regard to that advice.

Not being able to comment on Victor’s website on this blog. Does this also include the website of the circle of the silver cord? Going to miss Victor he brought such drama to these blogs. He has shown us in slow motion what can happen when you become a believer and your emotions prevail over your rational mind. Nonbelievers suffer from the same effect.

Think about how hard it would be for any of us to stay somewhat open minded if we were convinced that we were seeing physical manifestations of dead people and famous people at that. Most of us believe a William Crookes but not a Zammit. Hang in there Victor if these manifestations proves to be valid you deserve a medial of honor hopefully that medial of honor will not be presented to Victor in a padded room.

>Not being able to comment on Victor’s website on this blog.

You can still comment. The comments threads are pretty much wide open, as long as normal rules of decorum are observed.

>Most of us believe a William Crookes but not a Zammit.

I don't know if I can believe Crookes when it comes to Florence Cook's mediumship. I do think Crookes did a good job in testing D.D. Home (whom I regard as a legitimate medium). With Florence Cook, I'm not sure what to think.

I think it is a big stretch to believe that Florence Cook could have pulled off such a fraud as the materialization of Katie King for three years with William Crookes. I think it was Florence’s mother that asked Crooke to validate these séances. If these séances were fraud, that would be a big threat to the future of Florence’s career as a medium if Crookes came out and stated that these séances were deceptions.

Also there were other professional people that attended and validated these séances such as Florence Marryat and Dr James Gully. If you have not read Florence Marryat’s book "there is no death" it is a worthwhile read. Also William Crookes asked many of his peers to attend these séances but they refused. If there was fraud and Crookes knew about the fraud this was a huge risk on his part of being exposed. Crookes paid an enormous price in personal and professional credibly for coming out in favor of Florence’s séances.

Those are good points. On the other hand, Florence was later caught in trickery, which raises the question of whether she had been faking all along. She also worked with Rosina Showers, whom Crookes unmasked as a fake.

I don't know if Crookes would necessarily have to have been complicit with Florence. One possibility is that Florence had the help of her sister in pulling off the impersonations. Conceivably the two girls, working together, could have fooled Crookes.

Or maybe not. I have no firm opinion. It happened a long time ago, all the participants are dead, and the surviving records (including the photographic records) are, in my opinion, inconclusive.

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