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"A revelation of insight into the foundations of human suffering & transcendence. It not only lays out essential steps for inner freedom and joy but illuminates the way to true human potential." Paul Rademacher, author: A Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Are You Recognizing Love?



Recognizing love - and how love shows its face - applies not only to our partners or spouses, but also to other members of the extended family, and certainly also friends.

How do we normally recognize love? People tell us that they love us. They do lovely things for us. They make us feel good. They are kind, considerate; in short, they are loving. And you are probably thinking: I sure did not need to read this post in order to find that out!

Bear with me. You know that someone loves you, i.e., you recognize the love because what they do resonates with what you consider to be loving. However, when they don't do this, or no longer do this, then you tend to consider that they do not love you.

But in the instance of them not doing things that resonate with what you consider to be loving, could it not be that the two of you simply speak different languages of what love is? And how love is represented? And how love shows its face? Take, for instance, an adult daughter who does not hug her parents very much, nor does she express her feelings for them continually, but she is constantly bringing them dishes she cooks for their freezer, so that they no longer need to cook their own meals. Or take, as another example, a friend who is always late for appointments with you, but is, in fact, the only one of your friends you can really trust to tell you the truth about yourself. What about the husband who finds it enormously hard to publicly express any kind of affection for you, and yet is always doing all in his power to ensure your comfort and material ease?

Examples abound, and the point I particularly want to get across, is the fact that our expectations of love do not necessarily coincide with the love we receive, and yet, if we are open to it, that does not mean that we are not receiving love, simply that we must learn to recognize it in this other format.

When you learn the English word for butter, and I am German, in which case the word is Butter, I easily recognize it. But then if another person learns the word in Spanish where it is mantequilla or in French where it is buerre, it may be harder to recognize for what it is. Analogically, a similar thing happens in our differing conceptions of how to show love. So let's learn to recognize that another may show as much love as we do, but in ways that are not our ways. That does not make it less worthy, nor does it mean we are loved in a less valuable way.

How are you reognizing love in your life today?

Photo: Temple of Aphrodite in the ancient Aphrodisias, located near the town of Geyre in Turkey



For more about being more conscious about love in your life, and of making aware choices that will enhance your life and promote greater inner peace and freedom, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self (paperback or Kindle).

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon:

Ask anyone, whatever their circumstances, if their life is vibrant, fulfilling, harmonious and happy. An honest reply is likely to be 'no', because to answer a truthful 'yes' is no mean feat. Only to grow psychologically and emotionally is not enough. And only to grow spiritually is not enough either. All three dimensions need to be developed in order to realize your full potential. If you are willing to assume total responsibility for the self and to start what is an on-going journey, you will quickly begin to glimpse the first fruits of the ultimate goal: inner well-being, freedom, peace, harmony and joy. This book sets out the pathway to self-mastery and self-discovery and walking that pathway will be the most exciting adventure of your life.





My new book The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is now also available in print and Kindle formats.

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon: More exciting than any other kind of relationship you have ever known, spiritual partnership is a path, a Tao, available to you so that you may transform your life. Spiritual partnership becomes background music to daily life allowing you to enhance the process of your growth and evolution.

This ground-breaking book addresses:

• relationship patterns that hold you back from a truly fulfilled life
• the strong connection between sexuality and spiritual partnership
• communication leading to true connection & lasting transformation of your relationship

It is precisely at the problematic crossroads so often encountered in relationships that we are offered the opportunity to create a new foundation based on mutual complementarity rather than need; a free relationship between two people who want to be together, rather than two people who need to be together. Needing another, we are told, is the measure of love, but for a fully conscious individual nothing could be further from the truth. And therein lies part of the secret and healing power of spiritual partnerships. 


Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership 

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come." 
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author 

“Eloquently and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 
Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

"The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is a unique blend of wit and wisdom; Dr. Kortsch encourages us to take responsibility for our relationships, while recognizing and seizing the opportunities for our own personal spiritual growth." 
William Buhlman, Author of Adventures Beyond the Body 



Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for my new book. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Do You Dance?


When do you dance?

I'm talking about dancing in your life, not at night at a club.

Dancing in your life has to do with joy, with exuberance, with letting go, with letting your hair down, with feeling free to be you and exhilarate in the unrepressed delight of being you.

Dancing in your life has to do with knowing that life can be as good as you allow it to be, despite your outer circumstances.

Dancing in your life has to do with the thrill of knowing you have choices, as long as you choose to have choices at least on an inner level, even though externally your choices may be very limited.

Dancing in your life has to do with being conscious and aware.

Dancing in your life has to do with doing your joyful utmost to pursue your dreams because your dreams give your life meaning.

Dancing in your life has to do with surrounding yourself with joy, love, and peace, even though these are only available on an inner level.

Dancing in your life has to do with knowing that you will not die without having danced to the music that is inside of you.

Have you danced lately?

Photo: Bora Bora

For more about living consciously with joy and about using choices based on full awareness that will enhance your life and promote greater inner peace and freedom, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self (paperback or Kindle).

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon:

Ask anyone, whatever their circumstances, if their life is vibrant, fulfilling, harmonious and happy. An honest reply is likely to be 'no', because to answer a truthful 'yes' is no mean feat. Only to grow psychologically and emotionally is not enough. And only to grow spiritually is not enough either. All three dimensions need to be developed in order to realize your full potential. If you are willing to assume total responsibility for the self and to start what is an on-going journey, you will quickly begin to glimpse the first fruits of the ultimate goal: inner well-being, freedom, peace, harmony and joy. This book sets out the pathway to self-mastery and self-discovery and walking that pathway will be the most exciting adventure of your life.





My new book The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is now also available in print and Kindle formats.

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon: More exciting than any other kind of relationship you have ever known, spiritual partnership is a path, a Tao, available to you so that you may transform your life. Spiritual partnership becomes background music to daily life allowing you to enhance the process of your growth and evolution.

This ground-breaking book addresses:

• relationship patterns that hold you back from a truly fulfilled life
• the strong connection between sexuality and spiritual partnership
• communication leading to true connection & lasting transformation of your relationship

It is precisely at the problematic crossroads so often encountered in relationships that we are offered the opportunity to create a new foundation based on mutual complementarity rather than need; a free relationship between two people who want to be together, rather than two people who need to be together. Needing another, we are told, is the measure of love, but for a fully conscious individual nothing could be further from the truth. And therein lies part of the secret and healing power of spiritual partnerships. 


Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership 

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come." 
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author 

“Eloquently and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 
Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

"The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is a unique blend of wit and wisdom; Dr. Kortsch encourages us to take responsibility for our relationships, while recognizing and seizing the opportunities for our own personal spiritual growth." 
William Buhlman, Author of Adventures Beyond the Body 



Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for my new book. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Impossible Co-existence of Anger & Joy


Imagine - just for a moment - that the next time someone makes you angry, you choose not to give way to that anger and choose instead - very deliberately - to focus on something that normally brings you joy. I'm talking about the kind of anger - when you normally express it - that leads to greater problems in your relationships or even public spectacles; the kind of anger that we call explosive, and that you often find yourself incapable of controlling. (And you know that if you can imagine it, you can do it).

Clearly you are aware of the fact that such anger wreaks havoc on your life in a way that is similar to the kind of havoc an alcoholic may wreak on his or her own life. Why? Because both come from a lack of being in charge of yourself. It's that simple. That's where it destroys. Anger is both an expression of a strong emotion and the expression of a weakness. And to be quite clear, to express a strong emotion is not wrong and is certainly not something I want to discourage you from, but it is the way the strong emotion that is expressed that might be done differently. When the way that strong emotion is expressed takes you out of yourself, out of control of yourself, and furthermore is hurtful to others, then you probably need to rethink your way of behaving. 

Another aspect of explosive anger is the ego's need to explode, just to show the other person how important this is to you, and it is, in fact, the ego that might have the greatest sway over you to not follow my suggestion here, because a voice in your head will tell you that of course you aren't going to focus on something joyful when you need to show the other person how wrong they were to do or say whatever it was that they did, and how right you are to show them how angry you are. So it may be that your battle will be with your ego and not your anger, although the two are very interlinked if your anger expresses itself in the way described in this post. You might also want to click on the label 'ego' here on my blog, or read some of the other articles I've written about the ego on my website.

Hence my suggestion of deliberately cultivating - each time you feel that incipient surge of anger - the focusing on something of joy. Perhaps the smell of freshly-brewed coffee, or newly-mown grass. Perhaps the feel of a brisk breeze as you clip over the waves in a small boat, perhaps the savor of nachos on your tongue as you sit down to watch a ball-game. Whatever strategy you use, remember that its purpose is not to make you burst into ballroom dancing, but to change the state of your inner energy so that you are able to catch yourself, to hold on to yourself and to treat the whole situation in which you are involved differently. Not to pretend it's not there. Not to avoid it, but to carry it to a different kind of conclusion where your explosive anger no longer plays a role. Anger and joy simply can't co-exist. One cancels the other and you can use your power of choice to make that happen and to change your world.



For more about finding a better way to focus in your life, and of making conscious choices that will enhance your life and promote greater inner peace and freedom, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self (paperback or Kindle).

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon:

Ask anyone, whatever their circumstances, if their life is vibrant, fulfilling, harmonious and happy. An honest reply is likely to be 'no', because to answer a truthful 'yes' is no mean feat. Only to grow psychologically and emotionally is not enough. And only to grow spiritually is not enough either. All three dimensions need to be developed in order to realize your full potential. If you are willing to assume total responsibility for the self and to start what is an on-going journey, you will quickly begin to glimpse the first fruits of the ultimate goal: inner well-being, freedom, peace, harmony and joy. This book sets out the pathway to self-mastery and self-discovery and walking that pathway will be the most exciting adventure of your life.





My new book The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is now also available in print and Kindle formats.

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon: More exciting than any other kind of relationship you have ever known, spiritual partnership is a path, a Tao, available to you so that you may transform your life. Spiritual partnership becomes background music to daily life allowing you to enhance the process of your growth and evolution.

This ground-breaking book addresses:

• relationship patterns that hold you back from a truly fulfilled life
• the strong connection between sexuality and spiritual partnership
• communication leading to true connection & lasting transformation of your relationship

It is precisely at the problematic crossroads so often encountered in relationships that we are offered the opportunity to create a new foundation based on mutual complementarity rather than need; a free relationship between two people who want to be together, rather than two people who need to be together. Needing another, we are told, is the measure of love, but for a fully conscious individual nothing could be further from the truth. And therein lies part of the secret and healing power of spiritual partnerships. 


Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership 

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come." 
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author 

“Eloquently and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 
Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

"The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is a unique blend of wit and wisdom; Dr. Kortsch encourages us to take responsibility for our relationships, while recognizing and seizing the opportunities for our own personal spiritual growth." 
William Buhlman, Author of Adventures Beyond the Body 



Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for my new book. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Joy: a Fundamental Key to Your Happiness




Who holds the key to your happiness? Or perhaps I should ask what holds the key to your happiness? In the first instance, it is a specific (or more than one specific) human being that holds the key to your happiness. Perhaps your partner without whom you are incapable of being happy. Or your child, adult or small. Or perhaps your parent, or even a pet. In the second instance, it is a something that holds the key to your happiness. This can be something material, such as the balance in your bank account or portfolio, or the size and location of your home, or it could be your youth, your strength, your professional situation, your social position, and so on.

In all instances, you derive your happiness from an outer source, the key to your happiness lies without and not within.

Perhaps you can see the problem with that. People can let you down, leave you, or die. Material things can disappear, as can youth, professional and social positions. If any of that happens, and if the key to your happiness lies there, then what are you going to do? And please don't answer that then you will implement Plan B.

Recognizing that happiness first needs to come from the inside out is your path out of the above dilemma. Starting to walk on that path requires conscious awareness of a desire or intention to begin to love yourself. The more you love yourself, the more you will be able to find happiness on the inside and will notice - perhaps to your surprise - that you no longer need to find it on the outside, or at least, that you will no longer look for it on the outside.

In my book Rewiring the Soul I wrote: The less you love yourself the more likely it is that you believe another holds the key to your happiness.

Imagine one of your friends shows up in a new Audi Spider that you've secretly coveted for years, another friend has dropped 20 pounds, something that you've been trying to do unsuccessfully for such a long time, and yet another just landed a deal to expand his/her business that will net millions over the next few years. You read about someone you've never even heard of who signed a record deal recently and now the hit single on the first CD has hit the charts not nationally, but globally ... it went viral. Your best friend of many years never seems to stop going out, another continually fills your ears with how wonderful life is, and a third can't stop talking about the children or grandchildren and how intelligent or successful or proactive they are. An acquaintance met a wealthy widow/widower and is now getting married, the son/daughter of another friend was just promoted to Vice President of the company he/she works for, your golfing neighbour just started going out with an incredibly gorgeous woman about 20 years younger than you, and of course the list of all the good stuff that happens to others goes on and on. And not only does it go on and on, but it's been happening that way every since you can remember. Always.

And although a part of you is happy (truly happy) for them, there is another part of you that is envious, or feels jealousy, depending on the situation. You're aware of it. You don't particularly like feeling envy or jealousy, but there it is, it pops up all the time when you hear of the good fortune that happens to others. These thoughts are the breeding-ground for your unhappiness. The more they (the thoughts) occur, the more your habit of having those thoughts and hence your unhappiness grows. These are most definitely not thoughts of joy.

Here's what you can do: first, become aware (as you probably already are) that this is happening. Acknowledge that is does you no good. All the bacteria of those thoughts continually spread to infest you with unhappiness. Clearly, the thoughts must be tackled. Probably you are thinking that since they pop up unannounced and not because you 'will' them into being, there is little you can do about them. But there is. They have become a habit that started years, perhaps even decades ago. And all you have to do is rid yourself of that habit, much as you might rid yourself of the habit of exploring a chipped corner of a tooth in your mouth with your tongue. At the beginning you would simply explore, but as time goes by, your tongue develops a very sore spot on the place where it hits the chipped tooth. It hurts. So now you pull back consciously each time your tongue wants to go there, and soon enough, your tongue stops doing it. You do this because you engage your conscious mind into stopping the process because of the pain it produces.


In the case of the thoughts of envy and jealousy that lead to unhappiness, you do exactly the same thing. As you hear of the wonderful thing that is happening to someone else, and you notice the thoughts of envy or jealousy arising, you have a short inner dialogue. You ask yourself whether you wish to pursue that thought. Probably the answer is no, because you are already aware of the fact that those thoughts only lead you to unhappiness. You may need to have a brief battle, because it may be that a part of you wishes to engage in the thought (what Eckhart Tolle would call the pain body), but you can win that battle, just as you were able to win the battle over your tongue.

So now you had the thought, but you curtailed it. It lost a bit of its strength. You go on to something else. The next time envy or jealousy arise, you do exactly the same. And again and again and again. As you do this, the strength of the neural pathways that have to do with this particular habit will diminish. Eventually the habit will cease. All you have to do is remain conscious enough to practice this. And of course you have to want it. It's that easy. And you open the path to joy.

Imagine children jumping for joy. It's an image we often associate with children (or animals), but not so often with ourselves. When is the last time you jumped like that? Or even if you are elderly or confined to a wheelchair, when is the last time you felt like jumping like that?

So what has happened to us? I certainly remember jumping for joy as a child and now, as a boomer, my jumps tend to be more in my head, but I feel great joy with simple things ... such as having a wonderful coffee in the morning in a spot with a fabulous view (and that can be the view out of my French windows), but it can also be the view I imagine myself seeing on my Facebook posts where over the past while, I have posted myself enjoying a virtual coffee at a different spot in the world each day. I can also experience great joy as I unfold a newspaper in front of that coffee and settle down to read it (somehow, I have noticed, the joy is not as intense if the newspaper is virtual, in my smartphone, that allows me to view the world's press, along with the coffee, but the joy is not the same as feeling the actual paper in my hands). Other things that bring me great joy are setting out for a weekend drive with a friend (even if it's a short one of 30 - 60 minutes) into the unknown, or into the countryside, or up into the mountains, or along the Mediterranean, here where I live. I also experience joy as I open a new book, drive to the airport to pick up one of my sons (that's one of the greatest joys!), or as I contemplate an upcoming holiday. Joy comes as well as I savor the aroma of freshly-baked bread (even if I don't partake), the perfume of jasmin, or the unmistakable childhood smells of freshly-mown grass.

As you see, my joys are simple. I could list others that cost money or are complicated and involved to achieve, but the fact is, because my joys are so simple to attain, I can have them every day. And having joy every day, mentally jumping for joy every single day, should be on your to-do list in the same taken-for-granted way as you brush your teeth and have a shower. Abraham states: The standard of success in life isn't the things. It isn't the money or the stuff, it is absolutely the amount of joy you feel and I totally agree.

Are you feeling joy today?


For more about living consciously with joy and about using choices based on full awareness that will enhance your life and promote greater inner peace and freedom, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self (paperback or Kindle).

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon:

Ask anyone, whatever their circumstances, if their life is vibrant, fulfilling, harmonious and happy. An honest reply is likely to be 'no', because to answer a truthful 'yes' is no mean feat. Only to grow psychologically and emotionally is not enough. And only to grow spiritually is not enough either. All three dimensions need to be developed in order to realize your full potential. If you are willing to assume total responsibility for the self and to start what is an on-going journey, you will quickly begin to glimpse the first fruits of the ultimate goal: inner well-being, freedom, peace, harmony and joy. This book sets out the pathway to self-mastery and self-discovery and walking that pathway will be the most exciting adventure of your life.





My new book The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is now also available in print and Kindle formats.

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon: More exciting than any other kind of relationship you have ever known, spiritual partnership is a path, a Tao, available to you so that you may transform your life. Spiritual partnership becomes background music to daily life allowing you to enhance the process of your growth and evolution.

This ground-breaking book addresses:

• relationship patterns that hold you back from a truly fulfilled life
• the strong connection between sexuality and spiritual partnership
• communication leading to true connection & lasting transformation of your relationship

It is precisely at the problematic crossroads so often encountered in relationships that we are offered the opportunity to create a new foundation based on mutual complementarity rather than need; a free relationship between two people who want to be together, rather than two people who need to be together. Needing another, we are told, is the measure of love, but for a fully conscious individual nothing could be further from the truth. And therein lies part of the secret and healing power of spiritual partnerships. 


Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership 

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come." 
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author 

“Eloquently and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 
Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

"The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is a unique blend of wit and wisdom; Dr. Kortsch encourages us to take responsibility for our relationships, while recognizing and seizing the opportunities for our own personal spiritual growth." 
William Buhlman, Author of Adventures Beyond the Body 



Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for my new book. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Don't Allow Them to Take Your Dream from You




One of my radio shows was about the topic of life dreams - those dreams that you have about how you would like something (whatever) to be in your life at some point, and about not letting others take your dream from you, and not allowing yourself to reject your own thoughts before they even have a chance to germinate.

Dreams of this type are so infinitely important to the quality of our lives...whether we become aware of them at age 12, or whether we do so when we're 60, or whether we dust them off at any stage of our lives, remembering how blissfully we used to dream about fulfilling those dreams, and then just forgot about them. So now, for whatever reason, we are at another point in our lives, and have the opportunity to revisit those dreams, and to do something concrete about accomplishing them. What a blast!

Dreams should not be ignored, and particularly, you should never let anyone talk you out of your dreams.

Due to the response I received to the show, I would just like to reiterate some of the points made in the show:

  1. What your deam is:
    • something that gives meaning to your life
    • something that gives you a buzz, a sense of excitement, high energy, butterflies (of the good kind) in your solar plexus
    • something that tells you - as opposed to so many others - that you actually already know what you want, so you are blessed!
  1. What your dream is not:
    • something crazy
    • something childish
    • something that you should ignore
    • something that will lead you to failure 
  1. What others may say to you about your dream:
    • it's totally unrealistic
    • it will never work
    • it's childish
    • it's crazy
    • it's too hard
    • don't you realize that something so easy could never be of any value?
    • it's too risky
    • no one else has ever done it before
    • no one will like it
    • no one will want it
    • no one will believe it
    • no one will accept it
    • it's a sure road to failure
    • it's nonsense
    • it's not serious
    • it's not what a grown man (woman) should do
    • it's ridiculous
    • why would you want to do so much hard work for something you don't even know if it will work, when it is so easy for you to be accomplished in this other thing (something you do well but that does not fulfill you)?
    • do you realize what people will say about you if you do that?
    • why do you think you might succeed where so many others have tried and failed? 
Realize that the same buzz", the same special energy you feel whenever you think about whatever it is that your dream is all about, is something so special, something so important, that this very feeling is what can most move you in the direction of your goals, your dream, but only if you hold on to that feeling, that energy.

On the same note, with regard to your dreams, you will do well to be very aware of the thoughts that you may reject. How often have you not thought of something, maybe just as a fleeting thought or intuition that you paid little attention to, telling yourself that it was nonsense, or that it would never work, that the risk was too high, or that you would, in all likelihood fail, or that if you were the one to think of it, it meant that it was not important, otherwise someone would have already done something like that, and so on?

In other words, you've had thoughts that for one reason or another you rejected ... and then, sometime later, perhaps only days, or perhaps decades, you see that someone else not only had the same thought, but they acted upon that thought, and did something about it, and the results of that thought were now something tangible or plausible that others could see, or touch, or hear, or smell, or in some way become aware of.

What happens at that moment; that moment of your own realization that your thought - your rejected thought - has been made reality by someone else, who, rather than rejecting it, took it, used it, made something of it?

Isn't that painful? Doesn't it make you feel all manner of negative things about yourself? Now you might even have to make up excuses for yourself for not undertaking action when you first had the thought. That's kind of like cheating at solitaire ... the only one who is betrayed is yourself.

There's a wonderful quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson: In every work of genius, we recognize our own rejected thoughts; they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.
So what can you really do when you stumble across one of your rejected thoughts made reality by someone else the next time? You can learn from it. Learn that your thoughts and intuitions come from a well-spring of creativity inside of you that you should not necessarily reject, that you might want to pay greater attention to. Learn that there may be great value in what you are rejecting and condemning to failure or brushing off as the silly meanderings of wandering mind. Give greater value to your inner inclinations and indications. Try them out. Then, instead of betraying yourself, you may find that you bring something to life that in fact gives you greater life.

Coming back to your dreams, even when they change direction slightly, you will know you are on the right track, as long as you continue to have the feeling, the buzz, the energy, that inner sense of excitement. It's a direct inner connection to your inner self, that voice inside of you that warns you just before a car comes racing around the corner at the second you were about to step out into its path, that voice (or feeling) inside of you that warns you about that person you just met at the dinner party, who at first glance seems so wonderful, just what you were looking for, and yet, there may be something you need to look at more closely, and thanks to listening to that voice, you do so, before jumping off the precipice, and you find out why your inner voice communicated with you. Call it intuition, call it buzz, call it energy, there is a spark that we feel when that inner communication comes out and speaks to us.

If you feel this, if you are familiar with this, then it is paramount that you hang on to it. Don't think that just because others aren't doing it, or aren't paying conscious attention to it, that it isn't real. Count yourself very lucky - blessed - to have it in your life in such a clear way. You've connected to your inner source, in this case, your passion, and that is something you should welcome and nourish.

As Wayne Dyer put it:
Don't die with your music still inside you.

For more about finding meaning in your life, and of making conscious choices that will enhance your life and promote greater inner peace and freedom, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self (paperback or Kindle).

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon:

Ask anyone, whatever their circumstances, if their life is vibrant, fulfilling, harmonious and happy. An honest reply is likely to be 'no', because to answer a truthful 'yes' is no mean feat. Only to grow psychologically and emotionally is not enough. And only to grow spiritually is not enough either. All three dimensions need to be developed in order to realize your full potential. If you are willing to assume total responsibility for the self and to start what is an on-going journey, you will quickly begin to glimpse the first fruits of the ultimate goal: inner well-being, freedom, peace, harmony and joy. This book sets out the pathway to self-mastery and self-discovery and walking that pathway will be the most exciting adventure of your life.





My new book The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is now also available in print and Kindle formats.

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon: More exciting than any other kind of relationship you have ever known, spiritual partnership is a path, a Tao, available to you so that you may transform your life. Spiritual partnership becomes background music to daily life allowing you to enhance the process of your growth and evolution.

This ground-breaking book addresses:

• relationship patterns that hold you back from a truly fulfilled life
• the strong connection between sexuality and spiritual partnership
• communication leading to true connection & lasting transformation of your relationship

It is precisely at the problematic crossroads so often encountered in relationships that we are offered the opportunity to create a new foundation based on mutual complementarity rather than need; a free relationship between two people who want to be together, rather than two people who need to be together. Needing another, we are told, is the measure of love, but for a fully conscious individual nothing could be further from the truth. And therein lies part of the secret and healing power of spiritual partnerships. 


Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership 

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come." 
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author 

“Eloquently and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 
Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

"The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is a unique blend of wit and wisdom; Dr. Kortsch encourages us to take responsibility for our relationships, while recognizing and seizing the opportunities for our own personal spiritual growth." 
William Buhlman, Author of Adventures Beyond the Body 



Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for my new book. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Have You Sold Your Soul?



Remember Ebenezer Scrooge? "Bah! Humbug!" were his favorite words. He seemed to have forgotten about his humanity and only cared for wealth. Ho-hum, you say, it's just an old Dickensian Christmas tale. Well, what about Gordon Gekko (played by Michael Douglas) in the movie Wall Street? Had he not also forgotten about his humanity in his eternal quest for even more money? Was he not personifying the lust for continual acquisition that overtook us in the latter half of the 20th Century on a scale more vast than we had ever seen? Just a movie, you say? Well how about Bernie Madoff and his Ponzi scheme that left countless investors who had trusted him with their life savings? Did he not also forget about his humanity? Did he not sell his soul? Yes, you say, but those are not people like us. We don't have access to that kind of money to be able to manipulate someone like that … we'd never be able to do such a thing.

Fair enough. Let's look a bit closer to home. How often - at least traditionally - have woman not sold their souls for the security of a comfortable home in suburbia and a relatively carefree life by marrying someone they liked but did not really love? Or, how often do others (both men and women) give up their heart's desire and sell their soul to have that safe job as an accountant or mid-level manager for the security of a job, a guaranteed salary, two weeks paid vacation per year, and a pension?

Wearing Someone Else's Clothes

When I was still in the corporate world and received my first important promotion, I went to a tailor and had five suits made that looked like men's suits. I even wore some of them with a jaunty kind of feminine tie. Fortunately the suits looked rather good on me, but that phase of my wardrobe did not last very long as I soon realized I did not have to wear men's clothes to do what was - then - considered to be a man's job.

Wearing someone else's clothes happens when we take on the characteristics and mannerisms, the personality traits, the beliefs and the way of behaving of another human being. It may start out because we admire someone. It may begin because we wish to emulate what they have done in order to get there ourselves.

But there is a great distance between emulating someone's proactive behavior in order to achieve a goal and actually taking on that person's characteristics because we have not given our own being enough importance, or, what may be even worse, because we have not come to know and appreciate ourselves to any extent.

Back in the day women would often take on their husband's political and religious opinions. In conversations (and I remember hearing this phrase when chatting with friends in the early 70's), many sentences would begin with 'my husband says that ...' or 'Johnny believes that ... ' or ' Bill says we should ...'. It's not hard to grasp that this happened in part because these women gave little weight to their own opinions (which again, we could say formed the tapestry of the patriarchal social paradigm that already was in the throes of a major shift, but had not yet truly changed).

But in our present world this often becomes apparent in the way many of us take on the opinions of a majority - opinions we have not necessarily examined and thought out properly. Frequently this happens despite the fact that in our gut we may feel another opinion is more correct, but we don't want to stand out from the crowd. Or we may behave a certain way (consuming alcohol beyond what we really want to consume, for example, or buying more articles of clothing than we really want or need) in order to fit in - another (albeit lesser, perhaps) selling of the soul.

A good part of this happens due to a lack of living an aware life. The more aware an individual is, the more he will either give weight to his own opinions and character traits, or recognize that they need some tweaking, and will begin the process of doing this. Awareness leads to a greater love of the self and a greater (healthy) love of the self means that you would never want to sell your soul and wear someone else's clothes.

Are You Choosing Your Thoughts?

What you think and believe does not necessarily originate in you. We're all endlessly (and often mindlessly) influenced by that which we hear and see on a daily basis, including, but not limited to TV, the press, billboards, talk shows, and even reality TV, not to mention what our family, friends, and work colleagues discuss with us.

Well yes, you may say to me, but I still choose what I think about and what I believe. I beg to differ. Remember when we were told eggs were bad for us? Raise your hand if you changed your eating habits based on that one (or perhaps you still believe it). Ditto margarine being better for our health than butter. How about when they said that surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy were the best (and some say the only) way to go with cancer treatment? How about hormone treatment for andropausal men and menopausal women? Is it good or bad? Does it cause cancer or not? Or when they say that this politician is bad, that one is good and will save your country. Or: sugar is bad for you, therefore have artificial sweeteners such as saccharine or aspartame. Not to mention the amount of thoughts and beliefs we hold to be true because they form part of what we see on those talk shows, sitcoms, and reality TV as well as what we see on our pervasive social networking sites.

What does this mean? Have we all been converted into walking, mindless zombies? I believe a large part of it is due to the reading, listening and viewing choices we make on a daily basis. We appear to have lost the art of discernment, as well as the art of verifying things we hear. Just because we heard it on the news, or because all our friends are saying it, means little. We should, perhaps, take a closer look at the origin of some of these thoughts and beliefs, or do some research - even if just cursory - which nowadays is so easy thanks to the Internet, in order to substantiate what we are hearing. If I base a portion of my life on a specific set of thoughts or a belief - even if it is just something as simple as whether I make the choice to eat eggs in the face of a barrage of so-called expert commentators on TV, and articles in the mainstream press - it must be because I have first satisfied my own set of criteria for this belief.

So in some fashion this whole thing boils down to how much I care about myself. Am I willing (and aware enough) to look at things in a slightly deeper way in order to decide whether to believe something? Or will I take the easy road and simply accept, think and believe because it's out there ... everywhere and thus sell my soul?

Neglecting Yourself

This scenario happens more frequently than we care to admit: you may neglect your other interests, if these interests are not of importance to your significant other. In some fashion, therefore, we might say that you are neglecting your own life. And this is very important because when you may need the support of those interests in your life at some future point, you will be disconnected from them. (Interests can support you because when things are difficult in other areas of your life, they can help hold you up, precisely because they capture your attention in critical ways and hence are capable of giving meaning to your life, something which is always of significance, but tremendously important during bad times).

Alternatively, you may neglect your friends in order to spend more time with your partner. This is crucial because when you may need that social network at some future point, it - your friends - may no longer be available to you.

Another possibility is that you may decide to give up certain ideas and opinions in order to mold yourself more closely to your partner. If you think only a wimp would do this, only someone with no character and no moral fiber, allow me to remind you of the fact that we are extremely good at rationalizing and convincing ourselves that we are doing something because we really want to and only recognize after the facts that we did indeed drop those ideas and opinions to fit in better, or to please the other. And lest it be thought that I am advocating never pleasing the other, that is not the case. But it is a case of being very conscious and clear about what is going on when you do so. You might please the other with an article of clothing, a certain type of perfume, taking up a sport (if you really want to and really enjoy it), or any other example you care to mention,  but if you convert to Judaism or Catholicism or Buddhism to please the other, or if you change political parties to please the other (or to have a better atmosphere at home), or if you start (or stop) smoking to please the other, or start going to the opera or football games to please the other, then do make absolutely certain that you are, in fact, also pleasing yourself.

You may ultimately lose a portion of yourself by doing some of the above or similar things because in some ways that are not healthy, you will have become fused with the other person, and this lost portion of yourself will only then come back into your consciousness when you either recognize what has happened, or perhaps when the relationship breaks up. Losing this part of yourself to please another or to have a relationship without problems, or because you want to continue feeling the way you did at the beginning, is a very large price to pay.

Selling your soul is dangerous. But it's far more dangerous not admit to yourself that somewhere along the way you did this. Because if you never admit it, you'll never recover that soul that you sold. And don't get me wrong: I'm not criticizing any of these hypothetical individuals I've described, at least, not the ones in all but the very first paragraph. But any kind of selling of the soul is heinous when you examine it from the point of view of what it does to you. It numbs you, it deadens you, and it leaves pieces of you in a place from which you may never be able to retrieve them. Give clear and aware intention to becoming more conscious. Do this because you care for yourself.


For more about living consciously and about using choices based on full awareness that will enhance your life and promote greater inner peace and freedom, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self (paperback or Kindle).

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon:

Ask anyone, whatever their circumstances, if their life is vibrant, fulfilling, harmonious and happy. An honest reply is likely to be 'no', because to answer a truthful 'yes' is no mean feat. Only to grow psychologically and emotionally is not enough. And only to grow spiritually is not enough either. All three dimensions need to be developed in order to realize your full potential. If you are willing to assume total responsibility for the self and to start what is an on-going journey, you will quickly begin to glimpse the first fruits of the ultimate goal: inner well-being, freedom, peace, harmony and joy. This book sets out the pathway to self-mastery and self-discovery and walking that pathway will be the most exciting adventure of your life.





My new book The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is now also available in print and Kindle formats.

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

From the Description on Amazon: More exciting than any other kind of relationship you have ever known, spiritual partnership is a path, a Tao, available to you so that you may transform your life. Spiritual partnership becomes background music to daily life allowing you to enhance the process of your growth and evolution.

This ground-breaking book addresses:

• relationship patterns that hold you back from a truly fulfilled life
• the strong connection between sexuality and spiritual partnership
• communication leading to true connection & lasting transformation of your relationship

It is precisely at the problematic crossroads so often encountered in relationships that we are offered the opportunity to create a new foundation based on mutual complementarity rather than need; a free relationship between two people who want to be together, rather than two people who need to be together. Needing another, we are told, is the measure of love, but for a fully conscious individual nothing could be further from the truth. And therein lies part of the secret and healing power of spiritual partnerships. 


Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership 

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come." 
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author 

“Eloquently and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 
Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

"The Tao of Spiritual Partnership is a unique blend of wit and wisdom; Dr. Kortsch encourages us to take responsibility for our relationships, while recognizing and seizing the opportunities for our own personal spiritual growth." 
William Buhlman, Author of Adventures Beyond the Body 



Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for my new book. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.