Springingtiger's Blog

NLP and The Meta Mind, Something About Babies and Bathwater


Converts are the worst, they get swept up in their new religion and become over zealous. Sometimes I wonder if they are suffering from a lingering uncertainty that they have made the right choice, or whether their need to justify it compels them to belittle other people’s beliefs as we see in the Gaudiya Vaisnavas, certain Christian groups, some Muslims and atheists. Sadly the zealotry of the convert its not confined to those who need religion, it is rife in most disciplines particularly in the personal development field, which does seem to be somewhat fashion driven.

Among these zealous are some espousing Sydney Banks’ “Three Principles” with a religious fervour reminiscent of some est graduates, actually there is little difference in their beliefs, now that I think about it and I must admit I agree with them. However, as a Saivite, I am not going to be drawn into the silly “my religion/discipline is better than yours” game. I am saddened to see some of those espousing the Principles belittling their former practice of NLP in terms that suggest that, however successful their NLP careers, they never truly understood NLP. They say that now they have clarity of mind they no longer need NLP, which is like a driver saying, “Now I know where I’m going, I no longer need my car” Just because you understand how your tools work, is not the best reason to stop using them.

I know Richard Bandler has answered the question, “What is NLP?” with, “Whatever I say it is!” and it must be said that appears to include the whole design of being human from hypnotism to shamanism. However the definition of NLP I like best is that “NLP is an attitude of wanton curiosity”. Notice, not a state, but an attitude, it is an ontological statement. Were Richard Bandler to adopt the Three Principles, it would not be long before he asked his famous question, “What else can I do with this?” If and when Michael Hall investigates the Three Principles he will write a book, which is how he assimilates ideas, in which he will reveal the clarity that comes from the Meta Mind, that meta state of mind, awareness and creation, that some of us call Siva. What people who reject NLP miss ,is that the true NLP practitioner lives permanently in the question, “What more is there?” it is a fiercely spiritual practice that unpacks reality and strips away illusion. People who believe NLP is merely a collection of techniques have missed the point, they prefer answers to living in the question. Living in the question is “living in the moment” it is an attitude that embraces uncertainty, to constantly escape the perceived limitations of human thought.

We are living in an age of spiritual exploration and systems, of which probably over ninety percent are garbage based on an eclectic mish mash of techniques and myths wrapped up in wishful thinking. However no system, no religion is all rubbish, each is someone’s model of the world to be respected and, if one is an NLP practitioner, milked for every once of goodness. I am very fond of Access Consciousness, another discipline that likes to question and my favorite question that Gary Douglas asks is, “How can it get better than this?” A very Bandleresque question! Never settle for a model of the world, break our of its walls and look beyond belief. I know practitioners of Three Principles will claim it is not a belief system, but I have seen people coming to it looking for answers. Its teachers use established business models, because they are comfortable, and that’s perfectly ok, but let us have enough clarity to use, with awareness, what we have learned rather than thoughtlessly reject it. As Werner Erhard said, in the days of est, “It’s as bad to be half-assed whichever cheek you’ve got left!”


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