Monday, January 29, 2007

Money and Power

I was looking up synonyms for love the other day - arguably one of the most important words in the English language. As a verb, the word has about 40. Money - our topic today on Thinking With Somebody Else's Head - has 56. (I didn't even bother looking up "love of money").

But whatever you call it - bucks, green, or bread - money today is so revered there's really only one appropriate synonym ... the almighty dollar.

Our topic today is an important one, and we're going to try to look at money in ways you may not have considered before.

I'll be talking today with Dr. Claudia Bernhardt Pacheco, a psychoanalyst and vice-president of the International Society of Analytical Trilogy in São Paulo. Our discussions today will be based on Dr. Norberto Keppe's extraordinary book, Liberation of the People: The Pathology of Power. The book is an in depth and incisive psychological critique of money and power which reaches to the very root cause of our inverted and seriously pathological society and power structures.

It's essential reading, and I have some copies in English to give away to the first 25 people who email me at Send me your name and mailing address and I'll let you know how you can get your copy.

A couple of weeks ago, we began the exploration of money in our program about Adam Smith. Today, let's go deeper into this area that impacts us all so deeply. Our society is dominated by it.

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Friday, January 19, 2007

The Law of Attraction

It's being called the great secret of the universe, passed down through the ages, the secret to unlimited joy, health, money, relationships, love ... well, you get the picture. Newton knew it, it is said. So did Carnegie, Beethoven and Einstein. The implication being that if you don't have everything, the secret will give it to you.

Today on Thinking With Somebody Else's Head, we'll take a closer look at the Law of Attraction. That's the big secret that's being divulged in the viral video that's sweeping North America.

But do the ideas in this movie tell the whole story? I think not.

First off, I have to admit, I'm a little behind the curve when it comes to catching up on the trends sweeping North America. For one thing, I live in Brazil, which makes me at least six months late simply by virtue of geography. Stuff takes awhile to get here.

But I finally got a chance recently to see this "ground-breaking feature length movie", as they call it in the marketing blurb on the website - which was written in a manner suggesting that they were trying to capitalize on the success of the DaVinci Code's so called esoteric legacy.

The webpage and film are dripping with an implied mystical wisdom that uses a common technique: mixing universal truths with dialectical inaccuracy that winds up leaving everyone confused.

You know, in a recent teleclass I conducted in the U.S., this was something that came up again and again - people had read all the books, attended all the seminars, watched all the videos, listened to all the tapes, and were still totally confused about what was true or not.

I started this podcast and blog exactly to address that confusion, using the philosophical, theological and scientific knowledge coming out of Dr. Norberto Keppe's International Society of Analytical Trilogy in Brazil.

Today, I talk with researcher Cesar Soós, a frequent contributer to Thinking With Somebody Else's Head, about the Law of Attraction.

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Friday, January 12, 2007

Adam Smith Missed the Boat

Our world is dominated by it. And so we tend to believe it's natural. Even that it's divinely ordained. It's created billionaires, and opponents would argue, systemized the destitution of the majority of the world's population.

It's evolved of course, but the origins of capitalism can be traced to one man ... Adam Smith.

I'm aware I'm wading into controversial waters by embarking on a critique of Adam Smith, but after living in a so called Third World country for the past five and a half years, I've seen the negative impact of his economic view first hand. And it's been illuminating, to say the least.

I remember an article years ago by Harvard theology professor Harvey Cox about how the stock market was being treated like God. This excellent article originated from Cox's spending a few months observing the business pages after a lifetime of studying religion. He expected to be in completely foreign territory flipping through the Wall Street Journal. Instead, he found the language in the business section to be remarkably similar to Genesis and St. Augustine's City of God.

Today, we'll explore the roots of capitalism through its first big proponent, Adam Smith. And we'll do it from an interesting perspective, because our guest today is an artist! Albeit an extraordinary one. Gilbert Gambucci is a classically trained pianist who's played professionally on three continents. He's also an incisive researcher on Dr. Keppe's work - particularly in the area of socio-pathology.

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Friday, January 05, 2007

Thoughts on Success

We dream about it. We visualize it. We hire coaches to help us achieve it. We jeer at the soap opera villain who sells his grandmother to get it. We stand around the water cooler and shake our heads at the lives of those who have it, and destroy it.

This time on Thinking With Somebody Else's Head, some perspective on success.

I'm a North American. It would be impossible not to be affected by the blinders-on-full-sheets-to-the-wind-hell-bent-for-leather single mindedness of the North American culture in its focus on achieving the promised land that is the state of success.

We treat the subject with the reverence and hushed tones that mystics from former times reserved for the awe of creation and poets for the sweet pains of love.

But perhaps, in our strivings for material success, we've lost something. It was Canadian writer, Mordecai Richler, who wrote one of the great stories on that very theme in The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz. And if you haven't seen the great 1974 movie with Richard Dreyfuss, you should check it out for a reminder of the perils to our souls of an unrelenting quest to fulfill me, me, me.

Susan Berkley is a very successful entrepreneur. She has her own company - The Great Voice Company - she's a highly sought after voice whose clients include AT&T, she's a trainer and a writer. She's going to help us get a little closer to understanding success and why it's often so elusive, today on Thinking With Somebody Else's Head.

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