By Jennifer Griffiths | April 10, 2012
Probably one of the unsung heroes of all time in the world of psychology of human achievement, is Maxwell Maltz, author of Psycho-cybernetics.
Maltz was a plastic surgeon who noticed that some people’s lives were transformed under his scalpel, others not. It was as if these people were operating according to invisible emotional scars and an inner image of themselves rather than actual physical reality.
Maltz then went on to devote his life to helping people become their own inner plastic surgeons, to heal the mental picture they had of themselves. He called this the “self image” and likened humans to heat seeking missiles, goal orientated but internally programmed to always seek out and perform according to the image we hold of ourselves in our heads.
According to Maltz, if your self-image is unhealthy or faulty, all your efforts will end in failure until you change your self image.
The sports industry has benefited most from Maltz’s work. So has the self help industry.
Yet still, every year millions get spent on coaching but people don’t change because they fail to change the mental picture they hold of themselves.
Maltz says, “See yourself with kind eyes.
Acknowledge your mistakes without seeing yourself as a mistake.
You are not your mistake.
You may be a mistake maker but you are also a mistake breaker.”
Is it possible that the same applies to humanity as an entire species?
We simply have a faulty image of ourselves, who we are and our role or impact on the planet;
and we’re trying to live up to that faulty image of ourselves as killer primates and in doing so create mayhem and misery instead of miracles.
In his book Deep Truth, Gregg Braden implodes severals myths we have about who we are as a species.
Braden says that modern humans seem to have appeared on Earth rather suddenly 200 000 years ago and we’ve hardly changed at all since.
Also it seems that humans have been building complex civilizations far longer than we previously imagined. Recent archaeological findings take this date back to at least 12 000 years, double the period taught in school history books.
Braden showcases mounting evidence that suggests we are innately cooperative rather than competitive.
He also points out that Darwin’s Origin of Species and his concept of “survival of the fittest” directly impacted the thinking and mass extermination policies of both Hitler and Mao, resulting in the death of at least 50 million people in the last century.
Darwin changed his thinking in later years to co-operation and sympathy as the cornerstones for communal survival yet we can’t seem to let go of his older ideas.
Perhaps it’s time for us to see humanity with “kind eyes”.
Neale Walsch, in his book When Everything Changes says we make a quantum leap when we train our brain to ignore everything we think we know about a subject. You “Skip Past Your Past” then you re-route your energy to Awareness rather than Data. “This is like switching tracks in a train yard, from a track that just goes back to where the train has just been, to a spur that takes it to a place of rest. (p. 243)
Is it possible that it’s not an evolutionary leap that humans need to take right now but simply a change of perception of who we are? Do we need to “skip past our past” or our beliefs about ourselves and our species limitations in order to allow miracles to happen?
Perhaps, instead of an evolutionary shift in our species, all that is really called for is simply a “re-membering” of who we really are?
Braden writes, “ What if we found that the universe itself is directly affected by the power that we’ve hidden from ourselves for so long that we’ve forgotten it’s even ours? Such a radical paradigm shift would change everything. It would change what we believe about ourselves, the universe, and our role within it. It’s also precisely what the leading-edge discoveries of our day are showing us.” (Deep Truth, p. 245)
So perhaps the next step is applying Maltz’s theories to society in general. This would mean rewriting our history to raise the bar for ourselves and who we are as a species.
If you haven’t already got Maxwell Maltz’s self help classic Psycho-cybernetics on your bookshelf, do yourself a huge favor and get it, or the updated CD series The New Psycho-cybernetics . I’m busy listening to this in my car.