Saturday, October 29, 2011

Back to comments and reflecions “On Curing Steve Jobs”.

Art Janov ends his Reflections on Steve Jobs by saying: “They look to the properties of the cancer to figure out why, when they should also look into Steve’s early life to figure out why. Maybe therein lies the answer.”
That has now been done. An excellent book about Steve Jobs’ life has been written by Walter Isaacson. Probably knowing that hes life was going to be short, Steve persuaded Isaacson during more than two years to write hes memoirs. Isaacson finally agreed and got the permit to write a ruthlessly honest book and Steve allowed him to interview whoever he wanted, asking all the critical questions he wanted and to write it down without asking for Jobs’ approval. He said he would not even read it.
So Isaacson did and it turned out to be a piece of art, which explains how the genius of Steve developed and turned him into the myth he was long before his final death. A myth so bright and unquestionable that the extensive shadow side of his life could be fully exposed without subtracting nothing from his genius but instead adding to it’s fascination. He walked the line much of his special life, stretching his experiments with diets, drugs and eastern religions to the utmost. He allowed himself to act as an enlightened despot using people for his drive to developing Apple according to his indispensable desire for perfection. He was a man of intuition, “a-right-side-of-the-brain” talent, which helped him to catch all the intellectual “left-side-of-the-brain” capacities by handpicked experts, he needed to put together his visions.
In my comments to Art Janov’s Reflections I regretted that Steve Jobs never underwent Primal Therapy. However, this was not the case. In the beginning of the 70ies, Steve Jobs went to PT, when he still was a teenager. According to Isaacson’s interviews with Steve, “Janov’s argument that repressed pain of childhood could be resolved by re-suffering these primal moments, seemed preferable to talk therapy because it involved intuitive feeling and emotional action rather than rational analyzing.” “This was something to do: to close your eyes, hold your breath, jump in, and come out the other end more insightful.”
“In 1974, he signed up for a twelve-week course of therapy at the Oregon Feeling Center in Eugen run by a group of Janov’s adherents. Jobs confided to close friends that he was driven by the pain he was feeling about being put up for adoption and not knowing about his birth parents.” Steve Jobs later said that Janov’s teachings did not prove very useful. “He offered a redy-made, button-down answer which turned out to be far too over simplistic. It became obvious that it was not going to yield any great insight.” However, a friend of Jobs’ contended that it made him more confident: “After he did it, he was in a different place. He had a very abrasive personality, but there was a peace about him for a while. His confidence improved, and his feelings of inadequacy were reduced. Jobs came to believe that he could impart that feeling of confidence to others and thus push them to do things they hadn’t thought possible.
After having read Walter Isaacson’s book “Steve Jobs” I feel pretty sure that Jobs dominating intuitive personality got an important push by Janov’s Primal Therapy (though he did it long before PT had developed into what it is to-day) and that it has contributed to the development of Apple. Hes life, however, became short due to the impact of extreme physical, dietary and drug therapies, may be enhanced by genetic factors.
Jan Johnsson

Friday, October 21, 2011

My comments on Mindful vs. Mindless Therapy.

Janov's Reflection: On Mindfulness Therapy: Or Mindless Therapy   
(Click to access!)

My comments to Janov’s Reflections on Mindful vs. Mindless Therapy.

The main reason I never tried to become a primal therapist was that I could not understand the logic of the traditional psychology, a fact that was reinforced when I at different occasions met cognitive psychotherapists. Those experiences made me feel blocked and stupid and think that my IQ, though high, was incorrectly measured and too low to allow me to enter into the field of psychology. However, I survived because I loved to work with people even if I had to do it without any formal exam.

Your mindful Reflections are not only an excellent analysis of the dubious intellectual issue of mental “junk-bonds” by a group of officially recognized doctors. Your education is giving me, through its evolutionary logic, verbal clarity and elegance, a compensation for the traditional psychologic knowledge which for different reasons I was not able to digest. I can understand my own experiences in PT as well as I can enjoy your Reflections when I read them. To me that is conscious/awareness.

The theory of how the Jewish intellectuality was refined when the Jews were not allowed into much of the basic industry is a parallel to my own neurotic struggle to survive with a shameful illness like epilepsy. My epilepsy was “fortunately” such a present reminder of my imprinted pain that illogic, mindless and intellectual psychologic knowledge would not enter. Thank You for having put everything together! In this field, You are nothing less than a genius!

Jan Johnsson

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Art Janovs Examination of Psychoanalysis

An Examination of Psychoanalysis 

Wish Fulfillment

Contrary to Freud ’s theories , neurotic dreams, particularly recurrent dreams, are attempts to deal with imprinted pain. Monsters, chaos, and catastrophes all depict the condition of the dreamer's feelings rather than the fulfillment of the dreamer's wishes. In the dream, no matter what the story, there is often a feeling of impending doom; the same feeling that arises just before a patient slips into a devastating pre-verbal primal.

While some dreams may contain wish fulfillment, it is definitely not the essence of dream material. Dream material is woven out of the concrete events of waking realities. If Pain is the chronic ingredient of that reality, it likewise will be the prime mover of dream activity.
Wish fulfillment is a seductive concept that again veils Pain behind a dangerous illusion of insight. Worse, it rarefies the unnecessary Pain of deprivation into an inevitable conflict of infantile desires.


For Freud and his followers, the preferred method of dream analysis – that has remained unchanged for the last century -- uses language, words, and ideas as the main tools of unravelling. Freud believed that when traced back to its origin, a neurotic idea would "crumble" and the patient would be "freed from it." Unfortunately, intellectual tracing seems quite limited because the neurologic system allow s us to go only so far before barring the gates. Ideas can alter, deny, distort, and repress feelings, but they cannot crumble them. Feelings don't "crumble." They are felt and resolved. And with that resolution goes the ideas which were used to defend against them.
Dreams utilize the first and second levels of consciousness -- primarily the second -- and are another type of language. They use scenes, pictures, sounds, scents, and images to portray feeling. While dreams are still symbols for the feeling, they are closer than third-level ideas to the inner reality. Making associations -- interpreting dreams -- thinking about meaning, just results in more symbols to cover the feeling
Analyzing dreams is the same as analyzing an idea and finding flaws in its logic. You can analyze a paranoid idea -- "people are laughing behind my back," for example -- all day long and not change it one bit. When one succumbs to the feeling of the dream, then one is directly experiencing the unconscious. That means giving into the feeling -- which might be one of terror or blind panic -- and riding the feeling to wherever it leads in the unconscious.

Structuring the Dream

Freud's dream work model requires that the analyst structure the dream for the patient. This action in itself modifies the dream, for the analyst can only superimpose his own view and theory. The dream will have a Freudian slant in psychoanalysis, and a Jungian slant in Jungian analysis. The theory is a preconceived set of ideas laid onto the dream in order to make sense of it. However, no theory is necessary at all, because the memory-imprint is all that is needed to make sense. The dream when felt will lead precisely to the time and place of the trauma. No theory need intervene. The analyst cannot possibly know more about the patient's unconscious than the patient himself. And even if his guess is correct, his insight communicated to the patient will not alter the problem within the patient. It will only give him one more idea to think about, and one less reality to feel. Only the dreamer, not the analyst, knows for sure what a dream means, but he won't know until Pain opens the gates and diminishes repression.
Let's take one of the examples Freud used to show how the application of his technique explained the dream.

A lady related that as a child she very often dreamt that God had a pointed paper cap on his head. How are you going to understand that without the help of the dreamer? It sounds quite nonsensical; but the absurdity disappears when the lady says that as a little girl she used to have a cap like that put on her head at table, because she wouldn't give up looking at the plates of her brothers and sisters to see whether any of them had been given more than she. Evidently the cap was meant to serve the purpose of blinkers; this piece of historical information was given, by the way, without any difficulty.
The interpretation of this element and, with it, of the whole short dream becomes easy enough with the help of a further association of the dreamer's: 'As I had been told that God knew everything and saw everything, the dream could only mean that I knew and saw everything as God did, even when they tried to prevent me.' This example is perhaps too simple.[1]

For Freud it was "easy enough" to see the historical parallels between the dream symbols and the dreamer's past. The patient as a little girl was made to wear the cap, so in her childhood dreams she puts the same cap on God -- she saw the plates of food "even when they tried to prevent me." And Freud believed that arriving at an "accurate" understanding or interpretation in this way was sufficient to undo the trauma.
There is a certain intellectual satisfaction in arriving at such a neat and clear parallel. In fact, Freud felt that "this example is perhaps too simple" because the meaning was so easily discerned. We have found that no matter how simple and transparent the meaning of the dream is, experiencing its feeling is, without exception, never "simple." While the intellect can view the connections as a well-fitted package, the body experiences the connections only through confusion, fear, and finally , agony.
What matters in this dream is the Pain that drove this little girl to her compulsive behavior, and the further Pain of her parents' reaction to it. Beneath her insistent need to see if her brothers and sisters had been given more could be the Pain of rejection and neglect. The dinner food was only a symbol for the love she wasn't getting. It would have been best left to her to tell us what it means, which she could have done had she been encouraged to sink into the feelings in the dream, feeling the Pain of that little girl as a little girl at the dinner table. She must re-experience the rejection and the lack of love; she must feel the Pain that drove her compulsive glances. She must feel the even deeper hurt inflicted by her parents. Not only did they not recognize her desperate need, they punished and humiliated her for it.

Jan Johnsson said...
Dreams, my “Camino Real” to the cure which You and PT made possible.
For decades, the pattern of a dream has been that I start a joyful trip, walk or adventure of some kind. However, it takes more time than I expect. Suddenly I cannot find my way and I’m getting an increasing feeling that people around me are changing and starting to threaten me. I become uncertain and the situation, now a full blown nightmare, feels utmost, painful and unbearable.
15 years ago, and earlier, this stage turned sometimes into an epileptic seizure and sometimes into a feeling when I lived and felt the pain and horror of a prolonged birth process which was a painful struggle between life and death lasting for hours. A number of times, during a 20-year period, my dreams / nightmares / imprinted pain took me on dramatic sleep walks. Once I climbed a tall oak tree and had to be brought down by paramedics, another time I went up to the top floor of a Hilton Hotel in Frankfurt and a 3rd occasion I went down into a ravine in the middle of the winter. During my sleep walks, I was  only dressed in my underwear, the way I normally was dressed when I slept.
Having been through these painful feelings during my birth many, many times, the process has over the last 2 decades turned into a process which I now in my dreams can recognize, and these days I can feel a flash of my birth process and be able to “leave” the confusion in my dream, which I now can interpret. Often, I wake up. If I feel tense I can go with the feeling and live my birth, which nowadays is a very light experience to what I went through 15 years ago.
This is an excerpt from an article, “Dream a little dream of me”, which I wrote a few months ago:
“Last night I really had a dream. It was a very realistic and positive dream, filled with music and good feelings in which cramps were understood, and I came alive.
A dream figure, a physiological and psychological creature, who represented someone completely adapted to gravity and with a feeling mind was the main character in the dream. I wanted to be that creature and in between, I was. In the dream, I was singing and listening to “Dream a little dream of me”. Simultaneously, I had feelings, in which I resolved cramp after a cramp. During a moment, I had a feeling of being close to a seizure, being numb and feeling dead, something, which happened when I was 18 (before I developed epilepsy) though without knowing then what was going on.
During moments, I felt identical with the creature in the dream, even if it was not me. The dream which felt very realistic lasted for “hours”. In spite of sensations of cramps and crude feelings, it was a very pleasant dream. I cannot understand how I, who have always been perceived as tone deaf, during the dream, from my memories, could retrieve words and music to “Dream a little Dream of me” and sing it during the whole dream with the timber of Nat “King” Cole. I have not heard that song for many years. Both immediately after waking up and now hours later I feel calm and balanced. Physical health and mental health are the same thing!”
With a simplification, I can say that my dreams are one side of the history of how PT helped me conquer my epilepsy and my pain propelled neurotic behavior.
Jan Johnsson

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Art Janov's Reflections "On Curing Steve Jobs"

Friday, October 14, 2011

On Curing Steve Jobs

What I write now are simply musings. But I wonder if there were anything that could have cured Steve Jobs. I want to offer a possibility. Let’s start from my hypothesis that events during life in the womb imprint trauma in the cells and foretell of serious disease later on. (read Life Before Birth for a fuller explanation). These events, a smoking, anxious mother, a drug-taking depressed mother, distort and detour natural cellular processes in the baby. It doesn’t show up for perhaps decades but it will happen. Now Steve was given away, I don’t know why but the trauma can begin right there. It may have been an harbinger of future disease. Let’s surmise that this was the case; imprinted trauma while being carried by a mother who could not take care of him.

Now let’s remind ourselves that these traumas are registered deep in the brain and create havoc, and they resonate higher up as we evolve and disturb our emotional and intellectual/learning capacities. All levels resonate with one another and form a single coherent entity, possibly through similar or identical frequencies. To trigger-off the top level can mean setting off the bottom rung of the memory, as well. When we relive traumas in our therapy we eventually trigger off the related first-line deeply imprinted early imprints that dislocated cellular functioning. So we relive something in our childhood, a rejection, which gathers up into the reliving process the prototypic early imprint and the whole thing is relived; more than relived, we know that there is integration and resolution. That means that the damaging womb-life imprint is also integrated so that it no longer creates the tendency to disease.

The question is whether that disease tendency is really gone and really integrated. Has the imprinted been reversed? My discussion of methylation (in my book; sorry it is too long for my blog) indicates that it all can be undone and reversed. That is the generating source, the origin that detoured cellular life can be removed. And I believe it is the only way to do it to conquer the disease; assuming it has not gone so far as to be fatal. Otherwise the cancer comes back time and again, and no one knows why. They look to the properties of the cancer to figure out why when they should also look into Steve’s early life to figure out why. Maybe therein lies the answer.


Friday, October 7, 2011

Janov's Reflection on The Death of Steve Jobs

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Death of Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs has died and we lost a giant who changed the world literally. But I ask myself why did he develop cancer at such a young age? And I want to add my thoughts to this question, with the understanding that it is at best guesswork. It is a guess based on years of experience with patients, over sixty years, now, added to a great deal of current research.

Steve was an unwanted child. What does that say? That the mother was having trouble could not take care of him and had no prospect of being a mother to him throughout his life. He was given up for adoption. But in those nine critical months while in the womb there is a tale. And we know now that if a mother is depressed the offspring is also likely to have depressive tendencies. When the mother is anxious the stress hormone levels of the fetus/baby goes up and he too is under stress; not just a stress for the moment but a stress level that is higher than normal and creates havoc in the system. It is imprinted and remains a constant active memory. It requires that the system deal with it all of the time, and that means, inter alia, repression; a closing of the gates so that the pain remains sequestered. The repression is a serious, active force grinding down the system bit by bit, often unknown and unfelt until irreversible damage is done. Research today is full of information about very very early trauma and later cancer and heart disease.

It is my opinion that most of us untraumatized individuals remain fairly healthy throughout life. It takes a massive intrusion while we are just starting out in life before birth that warps the system and begins its toll. It is a stealthy enemy; a quiet, insidious menace that gnaws away month after month, year after year until the organ fails and disease begins its life. I am thinking that it happened to Steve Jobs because a healthy active nondrug taking human should ordinarily not fall so seriously ill so early in life. Of course, this is a guess and if I am proven wrong so be it; but I offer a proposal, a hypothesis, if you will, about what may have played into his disease. It is not an unreasonable assumption. And you know that even when there is no love and no loving figure to watch out for you in the first weeks and months of life the damage, heavy imprinted damage is there. Early it doesn’t take much to do it. And very early in life it can be only a matter of days or weeks with no parental figure that catastrophic illness gets its start. Needs are so intense in the womb and at birth, as well as the first weeks of life on earth. They must be fulfilled.

Otherwise the good seem to die young. So goodbye, Steve, you changed my world and you never knew me. But I am indebted to you for my life today. It is so tragic that you had so much to give and yet you may have been given so little to start your life. Life really is not fair because if there were someone up there judging good deeds and giving out rewards how could he or she have missed you.

Jan Johnssons comment:

We are many, with all our Apples-products, who are missing the image of Steve Jobs because we loved his ingenious, super-designed, well coordinated and sleek products which in so many ways are simplifying our lives and communication. However, very few did really know him.

Much of his doubtless genious, was probably a product of a neurotic, enlightened despot propelled by all the early imprinted pain which you with a fairly riksfree guess is assuming that he was exposed to.
We needed him as a visionary, as a designer, as the chief coordinator of the Apple concept and as the seductive marketing genius, and of course as a myth and a hero.
My guess is that his early death partly was the price he had to pay to create one of the greatest business successes in modern history. Evolution gave us, his admirer, a tremendous  compensation for his probably painful start which supposedly caused his too short journey in life.
Jan Johnsson

More on Rolfing and Primal Therapy

Rolfing 11. (Oct. 7th. 2011)

More on Rolfing and Primal Therapy.

After having given myself a few months break from my Rolfing sessions, which I went through during the winter and spring of 2011, I went today to my Rolfer for a follow-up treatment. I came to Jordi without having any specific expectations. However, in my mind, I had 3 significant experiences during the last 24-48 hours:
1. I had after 50 years re-established contact with a (then) girl who was important to me during my teenage and who is the main person in my chapter; “To fulfill your own unique destiny”. 2. I had answered a question from Art Janov if I consider that I have conquered my epilepsy.  My answer was a doubtless positive confirmation. 3. The evening before I went to Jordi, I had been presented to the school in Valencia where Isabel is planning to study at least the following two years. The school and in particular, it’s teachers left me with a very good impression and erased a lot of the educational worries I have had for Isabel.
Jordi went through many of the steps we had worked on in the spring, and I felt satisfaction over the improvements I have made in my way of walking with less efforts, my posture, the mobility in my right hip and my body’s over all positive reactions. Two things, however, needed continued attention. My shoulders still have a tendency to tense up and while walking my head turns downwards like my chest. Jordi worked patiently during a couple of hours on these facts. 
Suddenly, when I tested to walk the way, he believes is right for me, with my head upright and my chest lifted (without pushing the shoulders backward) I got a feeling that “I have no right to walk this way looking cocky” and all at once the memories of my childhood village's ridged hierarchy and environment came to my mind, and I could repeatedly feel it’s very negative influence on my body and mind. These memories were followed by flashes of being stuck during my laborious and horrendous birth.
I left later Jordi after a long and liberating discussion, and I walked just as confident as I earlier felt I was not allowed to. What would I do without Art and Jordi? 
Jan Johnsson

Arthur Janov said...

An email from Jan: "My view on my epilepsy is that I have conquered it! To be on guard I consider myself an epileptic! What has happend a few times during 2011 is that I, in a dream, can sense that I will have a fit and a kind of mini tickle passes through my frontal lobes. With my studies and tests of seizures I know what the tickles are. For somebody else it would be like an itching anywhere on the body.
I'm living a normal life, hiking in the mountains and keeping myself fit. If I drunk, smoked and lived a more sloppy life it is possible that I could have a seizure. After my last big batch of primals 2-3 years ago, when a lot of neurosis were relived and dissolved, I have not experienced any hallucinations and petit mals.
The second title of my book will be "Demystifying my Epilepsy". That is exactly what You an PT have helped me to do. It is so much more than the seizures which need to be explained and felt. Epilepsy was part of my physiologic and neurotic package which I developed.
To say that PT has helped me conquer my epilepsy is in no way an exaggeration. Quite the contrary.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

How long will I live

Another comment to a Reflexion of Art Janov

How Long Will I Live?

Of course painkillers will take their toll and shorten our lives - at least theoretically. For those who suffer without painkillers it is hard to live. Many cannot stand it. The pain will “eat” them with or without painkillers. Few are lucky enough to live their pain and lessen the impact on the body and mind, created by an early imprint, before or after birth, due to one or more overwhelming experience.
I have the experience from both painkillers (with high vital signs = high puls and high blood pressure) due to internal pressure and from low vital signs, when eventually the ADD-creating imprint disappeared after years of lived pain. All the time I have had a will to live. Especially after the birth o my daughter Isabel, who gave me the final impulse to go through whatever pain was bothering me. She is my inspiration, and she can hopefully enjoy a saner version of me, than my first kids could. That way, she will be able to unconditionally be herself.
Being as old or older than Art is a question of feeling healthy and motivated. The sad thing is that people around me are starting to disappear. They are often killed by their pain, with or without painkillers. Our remaining hope is that the next generations will learn to love their offspring from the day of conception.
Jan Johnsson