Journeying to the Land of Change

Earlier this morning, when I went out for one of my normal midweek holiday runs toward KL’s Lake Gardens,  an interesting question made its way into my head.    The question was this.   Is there a place you can go where all of the changes that you want to make in yourself already exist? What was …

Letting Others Have Their Fears

Not too long ago I found myself in a bit of hellish feeling in the midst of paradise.   So here I am sitting in a meeting talking about facilitating young people’s experiences, but right next to me is a person who seems a bit out of place.  I can sense her discomfort, perhaps boredom.   It …

Stalking the Issues: Releasing Character

For the longest time I have been dealing with my own development by focusing my attention on two types of character origins. The first has to do with the issues that arise out of the issues that come from family because we all inherit strengths and weaknesses and it is the job of the current …

The Wonderland that Sabah Is

So here we are, Debby and I, in a local Chinese Restaurant located at Mile 6 outside of the city of Sandakan, in the Malaysian territory of Sabah on the island of Borneo. The couple we are with are from Indian ancestry, having grown up Malaysia, and realizing that when a person cannot take a …

When I Was In Elementary School

Last night I had a dream that took me back to elementary school.     The dream was pretty vague but it left me with one of the difficulties that I had growing up in that era which probably still exists in this era.     The dream recalled memories of some students who were not extremely intelligent, had …

Avoid Literal Thinking

It seems to me that a large percentage of the current problems we are having in our world come from taking things that are meant to be deep and metaphorical in a literal and shallow way.    We see it most often in fundamentalist religion’s ability to convince large numbers of people that scripture is meant …

Spiritual Communication

“Aren’t a lot of dreams just meaningless firings of the brain?”       This is a question that I have heard at least 100 times in dream meetings or private conversations.    Whenever the question is asked,  my first inclination is to ask  the person how their own life is so meaningless, but it is a bit abrupt …

Four Elements in Dream Analysis

Most of the cultures and religions in the world have classified spiritual energy into four categories which are  the heart, mind, body, and spirit.  Jesus said, for instance, that we should love God with all of our heart, mind, spirit, and strength.  In dream language or mythological language such as in native stories the four …

A Child’s Dream is Often an Insight into Society

“I was going down stairs to get some water. On the way down a statue of cats came alive and were staring at me.  Down stairs there were two purple jaguars circling around me.  Om my chair there was a sleeping lady with Ron from Harry Potter.  wrapped around her arms and Ron said, “If …

What I Learned About Power on My Sunday Morning Run

I like to reserve Sunday mornings for my long runs so today I decided that it was time that I give myself a challenge by upping the distance to 21 k.   I haven’t run 21k for awhile, but I have been gradually increasing my activity level in the last few weeks so when that happens, …

Getting the Best from My Self

I realized not too long ago that I was really tired of being in conflict with leaders  so today I made the decision that instead of focusing on them, that I would place my attention entirely on going for my own goals rather than fighting against theirs.   As I am writing this right now it …

Transforming the Worst Quality to the Best Part 2 Joyfulness

Transformation of an extremely stubborn energy into a positive one is nearly impossible unless it is understood that the negative energy fixed in the ego is learned very rapidly and holds on tenaciously. Of all the negative weapons that people use to stop growth the one that is the most effective killer of change is …

Who is Controlling the Future?

Last week, our 4th grandchild, Will Shoghi Heins-Hastings, made his transition from the world of the womb to the outside world. I wrote about this in the last posting. Being there at Will’s birth made an impression on me that I cannot put to words because there is nothing quite like holding a newborn. Right …

Embracing Uncertainty #2: Bringing in the New Baby

I was really struck by something the other day. Sen. Obama, the U.S. presidential candidate, was in Europe proclaiming that he was a world citizen, that there is a huge need for cooperation if we are to solve the issues of the day, and that he wanted to work together with others. When I read …

JFK Quotes

In my last post I mentioned seeing a newspaper article about JFK in the interview room of a newspaper in Sabah so I decided to look up a few quotes from JFK and post them here.  Enjoy them. A child miseducated is a child lost. A man does what he must – in spite of …

Journey to the Mountain Top in Sabah

Sabah is a federal territory of Malaysia, not a state in its own right. It is like the Yukon or the how the Northwest Territories used to be in Canada. It, like Sarawak is located on the northern part of the island of Borneo which Malaysia shares with Indonesia. We arrive in Kota Kinabalu, K.K. …

What’s Missing In Self Discipline is Usually the Self

If you go to almost any school in any place on the planet and ask teachers what virtues they would like to see their students have more of,  they will inevitably say self-discipline, respect, and responsibility.    If you ask a group of youth to identify areas in life where they are the weakest,   they will …

The Myth of Ownership: Who Really Owns Space

I am writing this post because I had an interesting phenomenon happen to me today as I was working.   When I began thinking about being creative and spirited in my job,  I kept getting a negative image in my brain of one of the administrators and what that person might say or do to …

Maria Montessori Was Right!

Over the years Maria Montessori’s worked has received a certain amount criticism for the lack of inclusion of creative play and fantasy. If you are in a very strict Montessori program, even the personification of animals is deemed inappropriate. Well, yesterday I was working with a group of young children on the climbing wall at …

Raising the Bar Means Raising the Participation

On the playground at my school we have a set of monkey bars and rows of rings that students can play on to develop their upper body strength.   This year I set the goal for all of my kindergarten students to be able to do the rings and monkey bars.   Since they are both suspended …

Successful Events #3 Solving the Worst Problem

When I was a principal of an elementary school,  I used to meet with individual teachers quite often.   Inevitably the question that I would ask them to answer was to identify for me the worst problem that they were having in there class because I knew that if they solved the worst problem everything else …

Successful Events 2: Keep the Big Mouths Shut

A few years ago I attended a wonderful physical education conference in Rio de Janeiro. Besides myself and a couple of other people the entire conference participants were Brazilians. The wonderful thing about the conference was that it was highly participatory. We did outdoor problem solving courses, martial arts, and ultimate frisbee to name a …

How to Make Every Event Successful: part 1

A little over two years ago I started working in a new position as athletic director in an international school in Malaysia with students K-12. One of the first challenges I faced was with the elementary swim team. We had a relatively small team which practiced a couple of times per week so that students …

Who Do You Work for?

I just spent more than 30 hours during the weekend as a tournament director for a high school tennis tournament in which 9 schools from all over Southeast Asia participated. At the end of the day there were more than 200 sets played. We began our days at 6:00 AM and finished around 10:00 PM. …

Cambodia: A Wayfarer’s Journey

It is hard to imagine another place in the world that has suffered as much since the 1970s as our neighbor to the North, Cambodia. Barely a decade has passed since the series of invasions and the horrific civil war have ended. As we are flying into Siem Reap (literally Siam Defeated) my expectation is …

Accelerating Change By Making Friends with Your Enemies

I have met with many people in recent weeks who seem to have the same brutal energy affecting them strongly when they are in the midst of trying to change their lives. They seem to be caught up in the cultural myth that says that if I get enough love, then suddenly my life will …

When the Truth is Inconvenient

The other day I was having lunch with some of my Chinese Malaysian colleagues when one of them ask me an interesting question. “Do you believe in standing up for the truth?” one of them asked to me.  It seems like such a straightforward kind of question, but it is often more about wisdom than …

Encouraging Growth Under Stress

I was all set to do a great unit on cooperation with my kindergarten students. They passed through some great work earlier in the semester with courage and determination and attention. It seemed so right. Then one day they came in bouncing way off the walls and the sequence of cooperative activities became a sequence …

Dream: An Alcoholic 5 Year Old

Last night in my sleep I dreamt that I was on a path in an unknown place trying to get somewhere. I don’t quite remember where I was going, but it was a social event. Along the way I ran into an abandoned 5 year old who was drinking beer and begging for money from …

Accelerating Change 3:Dispelling the Myth of Who Can Do Therapy

I have to admit that I have been so anxious to write about this subject for a long time. Sometime in the 20th century (it seems so long ago now) it was decided that as a professional you shouldn’t do therapy with a relative or with someone that you are in love with. Who were …