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bernieDear Friends, Here is the Umbrella project to manage my life design for this year. Out of this so far has come a whole new expansion of Radical Honesty in the world. I will tell you about that in the next Radical Honesty Rag ezine in a couple of weeks. Love, Brad

P.S. Bernie Sanders and I have the same birthday, only I am a year older than him. We have made something of our lives by taking what we were given in hand and using it rather than being used by it. I am proud of my younger brother in the faith and I hope that young whippersnapper keeps up.



Brad Blanton

Theme for the year: That people want change so much is heartening. And that they want to make things better for others as well as themselves is touching and inspiring. That they know so little about what actually needs to change is depressing. We can do something about that, so let’s do that. We need to gather ‘round and ongoingly do some deeper work together and change the way the world actually works for all of us. So the theme for the year is called: Changing The Way the World Works for All of Us.

granny-dQuotes for the Year:

“Do we see who we are, finally? Do we see, behind the curtain, the scars and insecurities that have controlled us? And when we see them and look them squarely in the eye, do they lose their power over us, backing down from their bullying bluster? Indeed they do. We become free to take our life in whatever shape it has become, and find a good and enjoyable use for it, serving others and ourselves.”

Granny D (Doris Haddock)—(The woman who walked clear across America to advocate Campaign Finance Reform when she was 90 years old. She just died a few years ago at age 100. I miss her.)

“Each one of us holds transformational capabilities to engage the world constructively through the images of the future we hold in our mind. Our thoughts have power. The power of intent together with action transforms our lives and our world.”  Dennis and Elizabeth Kucinich, (wishing us a happy new year 2007).

 “You can have anything you want as long as it doesn’t have to look like you thought it would.”      Werner Erhardt

This document, which has in it my plans for 2016, follows a structure. I have divided my life into 5 Domains, and then listed and written up a number of Projects under each domain. The Projects are all managed by this overriding Project write-up called The Umbrella Project, which is the first to be read in this document. The structure of all the project write-ups, INCLUDING THIS UMBRELLA PROJECT, is:

Project Title: the name of the project

Brief History: what has happened so far

Background Commitment: values I am coming from

Vision: picture of what could be that inspires action to bring it about

Committed Listeners: the main friends to help keep the conversation alive by talking with me about it over the course of the year

Network of Support: a whole bunch more friends who will help

State: choices reflect the stage of development of the project: formulation, concentration, momentum, stability, BREAKTHROUGH!

Measures: Signposts along the way, milestones, signs of progress

Description of Overall Plan: Summary rephrasing of the project into a laser statement of what it is so that any one can get it.

Action: “To Do List” to add to, revise and update as we go—what to do and by when.

Date Printed: to keep track of which version this is, so the most recent upgrade is the one being used.

(You are invited to steal this form for the write up your own life design—and there is more detail about its use for conscious life design in the last part of my book Practicing Radical Honesty.)

The headings for the project write-ups are underlined and in red throughout this whole Project write-up system, so anyone can copy it, starting with the Umbrella or overview project, and continuing through each of the projects, subsumed under the 5 domains.

This structure is the RIVERBED of my life’s energy this year. Shit that happens that I didn’t plan for falls into this river. Having a river for the shit you didn’t plan for to fall into is what a whole lot of this is about! A few years ago I made a river to change the world and three workshops and the Occupy movement fell into it. Who knew? It helps to have a river you can bank on, and vice versa. Let’s river on!!

UMBRELLA PROJECT 2016: A Project to manage all the projects for this 75th year of my life.

Project Title: Changing The Way the World Works for All of Us. Working with other people to bring into being, out of our co-intelligence, common vision, service and leadership, a world that works for everyone.

stepping-stonesBrief History: Turning Stumbling Blocks into Stepping Stones. (This is a bit of the story of my personal history. A river of memories and stored experience I swim in, and can use to design my future with.)

My father died when I was six years old. My brother was four. My sister was 12. My mother remarried when I was seven to an alcoholic veteran of World War II, who was shell shocked and a wife beater and child abuser. My half brother was born when I was nine, and at the same time my sister left home to avoid being sexually molested by my step-father.

In this context I developed skills for dealing with my life circumstances, which required me to take care of my younger brothers because my mother and stepfather were often too drunk to do so. And my step father and his friends were not only no help but a part of the problem…namely a danger to the kids, my mom and each other. I learned to be wary, alert, and quick to respond to cues to help me predict mood and likely behavior changes in drunks, so I could keep them from hurting one of the kids or killing each other. I learned when to avoid, confront, demand, threaten, fight, run away and take control with weapons if need be.

I considered myself a smart kid and a hero and I couldn’t afford to admit to being scared and feeling sorry for myself. Because of this good and bad luck, I was raised in such a way that I became sensitized to subtle cues about human behavior, and wanted to help people who were hurting. So I have been designed by my life to be a helper who wants to help those who are already hurt and keep them from being hurt more.

As I grew older I ended up wanting to help people, take care of them, teach them how to take care of themselves and each other, and show off my perceptiveness. I resented people if they didn’t appreciate me a lot, do what I said, and turn out the way I thought they should. I purchased allegiance by helping others. I charged this allegiance to the helpee in an inexplicit way, such that a vague sense of obligation bound them to me, protected me from them, and got me praise. I am, by nature, a manipulative, co-dependent, lying survivor. My life has been organized around letting people in general know they had better not fuck with me or anyone I cared for, and letting women know they could fuck with me, and showing off some hoping they might be interested.

As a psychologically reactive, homemade, individual humanoid, I have here a hand-built, home-built set of neurotic survival techniques, my carried-around-with-me-at-all-times way of getting along feeling protected and surviving tool kit. By transforming my relationship to this system of survival instead of being victimized by it, criticizing it, and resisting it, or trying to “fix” it, I can choose to serve people of my own free will. I can use my presence and my history much like the Greek mythical hero named Sisyphus learned to use his.

Albert Camus, in The Myth of Sisyphus, wrote that Sisyphus’ condition of being condemned for all eternity, to roll a big boulder up a mountain and have it roll back down again, was a perfect analogy for the human condition. We are all condemned to engage in completely futile tasks that take everything we’ve got. We have memories and minds that make comparisons, and that is a gigantic  challenge.

sisyphusSisyphus, who used to be a hell of a man on Earth and a hero like Hercules and Pan all rolled up into one, was condemned for eternity to roll that rock up that mountain and then have it roll all the way back down again as punishment from the Gods. They were pissed off because he fucked a Goddess. Humans were not supposed to fuck Goddesses. He was thrown into this hell of complete futility that takes everything you’ve got, forever, just as we, who were once happy as children, have been thrown into the hell of the meaningless meaning-making machine of the mind and the absolutely insane obligations of so called adult life.

If we are to discover the secret to happiness as human beings, said Camus, we must be able to imagine some way Sisyphus could come to be a happy man, while living right in the middle of that special hell.

So, if we were to catch a glimpse of him just as he turns to walk back down that mountain to find his rock and push it up again, we would see a beaming smile on his face! How could that possibly be?

Camus said there was only one way that man could be happy, and by implication, only one way any human could be happy—which was by choosing to do what he had been condemned to do.

Sisyphus was condemned to the hell of rolling that rock up and having it fall back down, for all eternity, as his punishment, but he conquered hell by transforming his relationship to what he was condemned to do by choosing to do it.  When Sisyphus decided to choose to do what he was condemned to do, he said, “this is my job, this is what I do for a living, I am good at it; it is what I do. I roll my rock up my mountain and back down again. This is what I do and I’m doin’ it.” He owned it.

Sisyphus could have been rolling that rock every day, saying, “Damn! I wish I had a glass of wine! Damn, I haven’t been laid in a looonng time! Damn! I wish I could go back and see my old friends!” Instead, he took on what his present life was; doing what he was condemned to do. As Montaigne said, “A person is not hurt so much by what happens, as by his opinion of what happens.” (Like in the movie “Groundhog Day” when the lead character finally surrendered to having the day happen over and over again without resisting it, it finally became a new day.)

So I can choose to serve people as a design for my life simply because it is a good choice given my design, which I am condemned to live with. I can escape the oppression of the historical personality that drives me, even though I cannot escape the personality itself. In other words, the meaning made for me without any choice on my part from the life, times, family, and culture I was born into and formed by, was not under my control. What is under my control is (1) the use of that personality and history as a creative instrument and (2) what I use it to create.

By using the equipment I have available to me, I can choose to serve people, envision how to do it, and make it happen. So lets try that: I learned to survive by protecting my mother from beatings, taking care of my little half-brother and my brother and some other people by being wary, paranoid, aggressive, and defending against other people who could hurt us. I will always operate from that mode, and I have no choice in the matter. Still, serving people can be a choice for me and can be very fulfilling and fun instead of constant struggle.  If I own that built-in system and choose to use that model I can use it consciously to create my life with!

If I consider myself to be this being in the moment who is typing now, and my history to be something my present-tense self possesses, I can use my memory, in the present, for ideas and images to design a future to live into, and with help from others! Rather than continue to react to the past that designed how I should live at about age seven or eight or nine, I can transform my life by my own design, by choosing to do what I have been condemned to do, and use it. I can design the projects of my life, using my developed skills in surviving to bring about the results I plan to bring about for me and my friends.

I can use my personality and case history and reactivity to bring about my dreams for the future. Instead of trying to fix myself, or change my self, I can simply use my self to create the life I want—and to contribute to others the way I want. And one of the main ways I want to serve people is to present to them the possibility that we are all alike in the way I have just described—we can have either an unconscious, reactive life or a conscious, creative life.

The key is to generate a conscious vision for the use of our life. Unless we create some vision to hitch our wagon to, we automatically fall back into being controlled again by mind-made reactions and defensive moralism—based on formative experiences in which we stored ways to survive. Otherwise we are left with just our minds and beliefs and standards of operation based largely on survival in fearful circumstances. But our circumstances now are not the same as they were when we worked out how to deal with them when we were little.

Most of these ways of survival that worked when we were children no longer serve us as adults but we persist with them anyway. After we bang our heads up against the wall long enough we either (1) become more conscious or (2) join a group of permanent adolescents—as in most organized religions and political parties and their ilk—where we simply avoid thinking about it and work to keep from becoming more conscious like a God damned ignorant shit for brains Republican.

Now and then some of us transcend our childhoods and our groups of permanent adolescence called a culture. These moments of transcendence are usually temporary. Then, even after these moments of transcendent enlightenment, we become merely neurotic again, and all wrapped up in bullshit belief, just like we were before we last escaped the jail of the mind. Each time we regress to automatic survival and belief, deliverance is always at hand when we acknowledge the truth of our experience in the moment out loud, and then assign our mind a job to so it has something to chew on other than it’s own ass.

We can free ourselves from the relentless taboos and controls of our unconsciously built systems of survival through using two things: 1) honesty and 2) employing  our neurotic minds to accomplish the projects we design for the future.

This transforms a life of obsessive preoccupation with survival and avoidance to a life of creating.  Each of our lives becomes a conscious work of art. And a life lived in a community of people who know and practice this is the life of an artist, artfully lived.

This Life as an Artist is a choice that provides an alternative to the usual civilized and depressing way of living. To remain free of our culture means living outside of our mind in the world of noticing, and giving our mind some bone to chew on to keep it busy and out of our way.

We need to give our minds work to do, in obedience to our heart’s desire, and continue to share with each other honestly about our goals and our rackets, in order to create, and keep creating, what we want in life, consciously, together.

This conscious choice to do what one is condemned to do is called transformation. My life is transformed by my choice to serve people because the purpose of my service is no longer to manipulate and control them to get what I want based on my old story, but to contribute to them and affiliate with them toward our common vision—to be both leader and servant, usually at the same time. And that is what I want now, after all, really.

Starting from Being Already Satisfied

As a being, who notices, who lives in the moment and is satisfied in the present, I already have what I want. What I’ve got right now is enough. By giving up the demand that other people make up for how I was deprived, I stop living from unfinished business from the past and am quite happy with the opportunity to face what I’ve got in the moment, whatever the moment brings.

So, being of unsound mind and using that to create a future, (as my grandmother used to say), “I DO DECLARE!!” This is what I do declare: MY LIFE IS TO SERVE PEOPLE! (Not because I was psychologically built to be a caretaker, Jewish social worker, superman, savior neurotic, and etc. but) SIMPLY BECAUSE I FUCKING SAY SO!

Declarative speaking comes out of nowhere. I assert it.  And what happens from it is because I say so, using the accident of my upbringing rather than being used by it.

This umbrella project is a declaration of intentions that the context for my life in 2016. It is also a model to be copied by others who want to use it, to inspire and empower all of us to contribute to people we know, and have the effect spread until heaven shows up on earth for all of us.

What follows now, in all the domains and projects I will list, are details about what I will bring into being out of this following vision, which is a declaration. This vision for my Umbrella Project is my life purpose statement. (You can write your own if you go to Chapter 16 in my book Practicing Radical Honesty.)

Vision: The purpose of my life is to use my perceptiveness, intelligence, love of children, love of people, love of life and sense of humor by writing books, designing and conducting workshops, giving talks, making video and audio recordings, sharing honestly with friends, being with my family, and helping with the raising of children and grandchildren in such as way as to create the possibility of a lifetime of play and service for every human being on the planet.

Because of how my family and friends and I live and raise our children and love and teach and care for them and each other, this world evolves to the place where every little baby born on earth gets welcomed into participation with the rest by being played with, loved, fed, sheltered, and interacted with in a family and community of functional, loving human beings. War ends. Pure greed based economics no longer controls government. Compassion does instead. We play in heaven.

As this vision grows from the mutual effort of millions of us, I do my part by conducting workshops, making public appearances, writing books, keeping web sites going, launching online workshops, doing television shows and actively engaging and loving my own children and grandchildren. My books, now published in 14 languages, are read and talked about and quoted by business and political and intellectual leaders of the world.

Before and after I die and get frozen and then revived through cryogenics (see the proposal that follows, in my Health and Well Being Domain, called “Come Again?”), most of my work will be to support people engaged in coordinating the work of major institutions, associations, corporations and nation states. Our job will be to consciously help evolve a system of world wide organization in which the distribution of opportunity and the distribution of wealth are coordinated to bring about the elevation of all human beings who were formerly in poverty of goods or of mind, to a luxurious minimum standard of economic and psychological security.

I will be a part of the founding group of the first world government based on stewardship of all beings and the sharing of the freedom, creativity and compassion of all of the world’s people. If we humans don’t wipe ourselves out, this is what we could have.

I just watched an animated film entitled Inside Out, given to me by someone with whom I am in love. The whole story of Inside Out (a helluva title message too, “put what is inside out ”) wonderfully gives permission to us all to have all the emotions we have, to not hide them or play like they are not there, to celebrate the diversity of human experience and be glad about the variety of it we can have and how that can serve us.

So, rather than be victimized by trying to avoid and control emotions, or keep secrets for a phony sense of security, or just not mention things that are important to us because we think telling about them might upset someone—We can go ahead and be out loud about what we are feeling and thinking and doing and we can all work it out together. We might have a little faith in each other and see what we can handle and be pleasantly surprised.

The video is for pre-teens and teens and young adults and as it turns out, for older people too. The liberating message of this wise and wonderful video is that our fear and anger and joy and sadness and shame (those emotions are actual cartoon characters in the film) are all O.K. In fact, emotional reactions in all their forms are good, helpful, and to be shared and used to help each other with. They all help make our participation with each other elaborate and multifaceted and challenging and endlessly interesting.

I watched Inside/Out with my 9 year old son, Bruno Buddha Blanton, with whom I am in love as well. He had already seen it before and wanted to see it over again with me. I loved him all over again for that.

The emergence of this video into popularity is one of many new evidences I see every week. According to me, who (of course!) has no vested interest in such an interpretation, more and more people in the world are affirming the value of being radically honest. This interpretation of the meaning of what is going on in the world makes me happy.

At the same time, the news about idiotic world politics makes me want to puke. Being with all of those assessment triggered sets of sensations (being in love and having people agree I am right and being about to puke about the intense cruelty of ignorant true believers, all at the same time) caused me to hallucinate a vision: We are all in a kind of gigantic dance together with Goodies and Evilies all doing their part! All of it counts! And the whole thing is, in it’s own way, quite beautiful!

Yes! I am a scared, pissy, whiney, romantic, angry, happy, competitive, judgmental, selfish, greedy, etc. asshole! Hurrah!

So are you! Hurrah!

So are we all! Hurrah!

Here’s to all the scared, pissy, whiney, romantic, happy, angry, judgmental,
competitive, selfish, greedy, deluded assholes in the world! Hurrah!

We wonderful multi-faceted, extremely creative, multi-varied mess makers are all making and learning from our horrific wonderful mistakes, and that is all wonderful, except for just one tiny little thing: Getting the inside out is not just an option. It is a requirement for human survival. It is an offer we can’t refuse.

Most of us in the whole human community are still blithely assuming that we will go on forever by not letting the inside get out. I have bad news for all of us.

zorbaWe will not.

We (all of us, humankind and it’s story from beginning to end) will still be a beautiful and ecstatically horrific story even if we come to a rather sudden end in the near future. Ending up the whole show is pretty much set to be determined by all of us shortly. There are many, many splendiferous crises (Nuclear holocaust, global warming, etc.) on the immediate horizon, that could bring down everything and everyone (like Zorba the Greek’s great crash). And even though we, like Zorba, could dance to celebrate the immense tragedy at the end, wouldn’t it be so much more fun to celebrate saving our souls at just the expense of our egos?

What is Coming Up Next

So when the global warming summit in Paris fails, as it is bound to do because greedy corporate psychopathic bastards who ought to be killed are in charge of what happens in this poison for profit world, politicians are pussies, especially rich stupid fucking Republicans…etc. we will take one step closer to the end. After that we can all be nostalgic and tragic and feel sorry for ourselves. We can say we tried but it was too little too late.

We can commiserate together about how we were so close and almost made it. Just for a moment before we are suddenly not alive anymore we can talk about how Damn! We almost fixed it! Unfortunately, as they say, nostalgia ain’t what it used to be. And that saying will be particularly true when we are all dead. (Maybe a few will be left behind just for nostalgia’s sake?)

We Who Are About to Die and Kill all Our Children Could Fix This

I wonder what could happen to us if we loved everything, including hate?

There is a thin chance
if we celebrate the whole dance
we won’t shit in our pants.

That question, and that response to it. are the focus of my life now, until I die.

In January, about a month from today, at the Center for Radical Honesty, we are coming out with an online course to help all of us be in transcendental love instead of being trapped in mere self righteous hate. The course shows how you do that by being explicit, direct and honest about what is going on with you even when you feel hateful. We teach how to pay attention. You end up feeling all the energy of all the sensations inside while sharing what you resent or appreciate and reveal what you have been hiding. And then by letting sensations come and go in the open air, a new moment of feeling arrives for you and everyone involved. You become present…to your own being and to the beings of all of your friendemies. Everyone is moved not by thoughts but by presence to experience while it flows and to contact with another being just like you.

You do the same thing (become present to, notice, be in contact) with the whole parade of feelings in Inside/Out (and inside you). You let it all hang out for your sake and everyone you care about’s sake. You could be a hell of a lot happier, and help us save the world and the rest of us in it. This course could save our lives.

The online course is called a lot of things. We who have been working on it for years now have a whole series of names for it. Reading these titles over really does let you know what the course is about. Please help us out now. Based on your experience of Radical Honesty pick the main titles you like and let us know. Or suggest another…as soon as we come up with a name for this we can get started. We gotta pick a name by Xmas! Here they are!

radical honest shitRadical Honesty: How to Get Over Shit and BE Happy

Radical Honesty: How to Get Into Shit, Get Over It, and BE Happy.

How to Straighten Out Your Life for the Sake of Other People…and Vice Versa

How Giving Love and Honor to Other Beings Like Yourself…to Even Your Enemies… can Enhance Your Life and the Lives of Others.

Tough Love is not so Tough, Sometimes It’s more fun a little bit rough…then all of a sudden you can’t get enough.

Putting a Finish on Unfinished Business

Mothers, Brothers and Significant Others!

Mothers, Brothers and Significant Others: Completing what’s Incomplete and Getting Back Out on the Street

You Did It Once! You Can Do It Again! The Radical Honesty Course in Completion

How to Forgive People who Have Pleased You, Hurt You and Offended You, and Enjoy Your Life Again Outside the Box of Avoiding Dealing with People You Care About

How to Be Completely Here: Honest Coaching, Love and Beer!

How to quit living in the past & create a happy future

How to complete the past, arrive in the present , & create a happy future

How to clean up the past, arrive in the present , & create a happy future

How to heal the past, arrive in the present , & create a happy future

How to forgive people in the past, arrive in the present , & create a happy future

Forgiveness for dummies 🙂

Fomenting forgiveness & creating connection 🙂

How to actually give & receive forgiveness and create true (or “real”) love
creating real forgiveness and true love / intimacy / connection

Practical Forgiveness Skills

Radical Honesty: How to BE Happy by Facing what You’ve Been Avoiding and Getting Over Shit

How to Stop Avoiding the past, Lying in the present, and missing out on the future

Be How You Be How You Would Love to Be and Do what You would Love to Do

Getting Back to Sweet Honesty Like a Child Will Get You Where You Want to Be: Being Grown Up and Happily

Go Through It to Get Over It

Connection at your Fingertips

Break through to Connection

Instant Authenticity

Break through the BS

Instant Intimacy

Breaking Through Barriers to Intimacy

Reuniting with Lost Loved Ones: Opening Your Future to New Loved Ones

All those titles point to what the course has in it—the secret to the good life. I gives you a chance to start lovin’ life as it is instead of how it ought to be. It is about the most practical aspects of love that have ever been known.

Unfortunately, this course is probably a week or so too late to actually save the world. Sorry. I was busy with other things there for a while and got a little behind…shit happened…etc.

All kidding aside. If you and I can accept, be present to, acknowledge and share what we notice about everything, inside and out, with everyone we have been or could be close to, we can transcend our reactive minds. Then those we have loved in that way can notice and transcend their reactivity of mind too. And we have to do that now or die. If that happens right quickly, to billions of us, we might not only survive, but thrive. The odds are against us but we still have some odds.

Religious Implications of this Course in Honesty

Our destruction or our salvation depend on the wisdom of Buddha, not Moses or Jeziz or Muhammad. Buddha won. And Moses and Jesus and Muhammad were actually right too, (just a little to God damned zealous about it). It turns out the love talked about by Jesus is from the noticing Buddha focused on.

buddha statueThe point is: It’s all the Moses freaks and Jeziz freaks and Mohammad freaks, (including American right wingnuts), who are terrorizing the world right now. One time religion had relevance. Not so much now. They traded in their love of honest social intercourse to start masturbating to belief. They can only rediscover their root faiths when you and I demonstrate how well they work for all of us. Love is the answer. But getting it from a religion and turning it into a “should” is questionable.

If you’d like to pursue this further, gimme a hAllah! Hell Mary! That would just be Buddha full! Allah Lew Ya! Ahhh! Men!

Love, Brad

P.S. In my last newsletter I said that the sexual revolution seemed to have reached a tipping point in the U.S. in 2014 and 2015. All over the country marriage equality seemed to have happened suddenly. After hundreds of years of oppression and 50 years of escalation of people coming out of the closet about their sexuality, “suddenly” LBGT rights and gay marriage and love between people of all kinds became legitimate, recognized as a right and confirmed by even a conservative Supreme Court.

Radical Honesty is about coming out of the closet about pettiness, judgmental condemnation of self and others, anger, “illegitimate” love, embarrassment, pretention and hateful proclivities toward the actions and behaviors of others.

When Radical Honesty tips, if it does, the worldwide fascist economic order will be replaced by some form of government by friendemies who have faith in each other, and trust each other…to fight, but not kill each other, forgive each other, and survive and then thrive, and keep it up.

I hate to lay this on you but it really is up to you to save yourself and those you love and the rest of humanity. You could honestly straighten out your life for the sake of other people. Some of them you know and some you don’t. Some of them, many of them, are children. Many of them, if you knew, you would love. Some of the older people you will help to be alive and stay alive won’t be such great people. And they need their chance to straighten out their lives for the sake of other people too. That’s what is in our course, of course.

old way new wayThe sexual revolution reached a tipping point in 2014 and 2015. It happened suddenly after a long time waitin’. After 30 years of people risking reputation, livelihood, and life and limb by actively and at great risk, coming out of the closet about their sexuality. Suddenly LBGT rights and gay marriage and love between people of all kinds became legitimate, recognized as a right and confirmed by even a conservative Supreme Court. The shocking sudden change in acceptability, no one could have predicted—certainly not from the history of injustice and prejudice against gay people that preceded the turnaround. For lifetimes on end, if you desired or liked or wanted sex with members of your own sex you were supposed to pretend that you didn’t and never tell anyone. Then, all of a sudden, that went away and it didn’t matter so much anymore. What happened? How did it happen? Suddenly everyone’s opinion about what other people can do and had a right to do sexually, changed. Or as Malcolm Gladwell said in his wonderful book “The Tipping Point,” something “tipped.”

In 1959 when I was 19 years old and went to my first civil rights rally in Austin Texas and helped start the theater stand-in movement and restaurant sit-in movement, none of us knew what to do to bring about changes in the ridiculous segregated social order. We all dreamed of and demanded desegregation after so many hundreds of years of racial injustice…and we got arrested and bombed and shot at and beat up and some of us got killed…but we had no idea that within 5 years there would be a civil rights act to legally end segregation. The justifiability of segregation according to race was ended and the right of all humans to be treated the same as all other humans was established by law and consensus among us. And the way we have been living with each other since then has changed. Really. A lot more of us got to know each other than we would have with the older arrangements.

pot-smokingI’ve been smoking marijuana and growing it and buying it and selling it and giving it away for 54 years, illegally. The last I bought from a state liscensed store in Denver. Inside of a few more years the whole United States will be pretty much as tipsy as Colorado. The DEA is coming down. The bullshit war on drugs is coming to an end.

O.K. that’s enough. If you want more there are many other examples of tipping points in Malcolm Gladwell’s book. If you want more than that, just stay alive another five years. What seems to make things tip is information that contradicts erroneous beliefs that comes from people you trust who are honest with you.

The Tipping Point of All Tipping Points

I think we and our allies in honesty all over the world are escalating the speed with which things tip.

Either hold on to or let go of your seat. I’m not sure which…or when…you should hold on or let go. A storm at sea is coming. I think we have the chance to join the storm and eventually calm the waves with honesty.

It’s kind of scary though.

Could it suddenly become acceptable to come out of the closet about things even more scary than our sexual proclivities?

What if there is developing a kind of meta tipping point of tipping points?

What happens when we all admit we are all fucking nazi’s in our minds?

What about love of people it is taboo to love (You can’t love her, she’s married!). What about our pettiness, anger, embarrassment, pretentiousness, judgmental condemnation of others (and our selves as well), and our arrogant demands to control the actions and behaviors of others?

What about coming out of a whole bunch of closets at once!? (What are crowds of loveable assholes to do?)

Will there be a tipping point on how much control of others is protected, demanded or permitted or even considered necessary?  (We don’t need the armies, police forces, the legal system that is completely antiquated and corrupt. When all of us knowing that tips, they all must be exposed and taken apart and put aside and a smaller, less expensive and better system created.)

How about lying? Is there a tipping point for stopping pretending that you are not pretending, when you are…or admitting it and taking it back when you do?

Is there a tipping point for honesty in relationships?

Is there a tipping point for world wide radical honesty?

Yes. There is. It is coming. Get ready for it!

When this “bigger room for personal honesty in the world” tips, the worldwide fascist system of law and order cannot survive. Neither can the worldwide economic order. It will suddenly collapse and be replaced by government by friends who trust and depend on each other.

A world organized around honest sharing instead of money?? What? Am I crazy?

People of the traditional paranoid mindset based on “us versus them” cannot survive this either. The “us” I am referring to in that last paranoid statement are those of us who are honest about our lying and the “them” are all the regular assholes who lie about their lying, i.e. normal folks who maintain their status by maintaining the status quo. How do we become allies with these enemies?

What happens when something tips is that both of the opposing crowds change their minds! All of a sudden, people on both “sides” start listening to each other and speaking honestly about what used to be taboo. What used to be in fashion becomes old fashioned overnight! Enemies become friends. Everyone becomes more interested in what is really going on than in maintaining their position of being right.

cracks in the foundationMy friend Charles Eisenstein calls such things “cracks in the foundation of normalcy,” a phrase I just love. Here is and excerpt from his most recent post:

“I was pleased to see HuffPo feature this NYT magazine article on the criminal (in)justice system. It describes the effects of the bail system that forces indigent defendants to plead guilty to trumped-up charges or rot in jail for weeks or months (or years) because they cannot make bail. One man was arrested as he walked out of a store with a soda and straw — the straw was considered “drug paraphernalia.” He spent weeks in jail, where he was severely beaten. A woman left the homeless shelter to buy diapers for her baby, whom she left in the care of a friend. She was arrested for recklessly endangering her child; six months later she still hasn’t regained custody.

“As the statistics in the article demonstrate, such stories are not exceptional (especially for black people). Nor are they a new phenomenon. What is new in my lifetime though is that finally this sort of injustice is emerging into mass consciousness, no longer invisible to the majority of middle-class white people.

“Relatedly, the upsurge of outrage at the police killings of unarmed black men (and at police brutality in general) reveals another crack in the foundation of normalcy. Police brutality is nothing new; what is new is that it is becoming harder to hide — literally, due to ubiquitous video cameras and social media, and figuratively, because of the disintegration of the racial, political, and class narratives that cloaked it.

“It is tempting to blame the situation on racist cops, callous judges, or opportunistic politicians. Certainly such people exist, but blaming them is a trap, a deflection of anger onto a convenient but superficial target. The article gives us a glimpse instead of a monstrous machinery of injustice: an industrialized, inhuman, nearly paralyzed legal system and courtroom culture, embedded in an equally paralyzed political system, itself beholden to deep cultural myths about human nature, criminality, and punishment. At bottom, I believe, we are seeing the crisis and imminent collapse of the ideology of Control, which in its failing days goes to new and absurd extremes in response to its own failures.

“Fortunately, it isn’t necessary to understand the deep causes of the horrid injustice that is becoming increasingly plain to see. The understanding will come with time. What is necessary now is to awaken the “no”. That will power reforms (one good one the article mentions is to eliminate the cash bail system entirely) that will ultimately prove insufficient as our tolerance for injustice wears thinner and thinner. Our industrial system of punishment and mass incarceration is fundamentally incompatible with the dignity of each human being. Our consciousness is evolving to the point where that is no longer tolerable. (italics mine…Brad)

While it may seem as though indignity — not to mention horrid injustice — is reaching all-time highs, we might also see their heightened visibility as the beginning of a major shift. Someday, maybe sooner than we have any reason to think, we will live in a world where no one is dehumanized and everyone is treated as a full being. Is anything less tolerable to you?”

What Charles refers to is a personal evolution in which many people coming out of the closet about their real experience in life, that leads to the social revolution. It goes by a lot of names. Around here we call it Radical Honesty. It is the ultimate breakthrough that all the former and later breakthroughs will either live or die from.

The systemic injustice of the well-named Criminal Justice System is just a case in point. The rule of kings was replaced by the rule of prejudicial legalistic mindfuck. We simply have to become more unruly. And when the revolution tips we will undo and replace the old with a new and revised mindfuck, short lived, and reviseable again soon.

I trust comedians. They are willing to be embarrassed and embarrassing and call us out of our closets. They make fun of what used to be serious. Andy B here is funny and wise and full of good tips.

“Sanders Shamelessly Pandering to Voters Who Want to Hear Truth

By Andy Borowitz, The New Yorker

13 August 15

The article below is satire. Andy Borowitz is an American comedian and New York Times-bestselling author who satirizes the news for his column, “The Borowitz Report.”

Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is gaining legions of new admirers by shamelessly pandering to voters who want to hear the truth, critics of the Vermont senator say.

According to those critics, Sanders has cynically targeted so-called “truth-based voters” to build support for his Presidential bid.

“People come to Sanders’s rallies expecting to hear the truth, and he serves it up to them on a silver platter,” the political strategist Harland Dorrinson said. “It’s a very calculated gimmick.”

But while Sanders’s practice of relentlessly telling the truth might play well in states that are rich in truth-based voters, like the early primary states of Iowa and New Hampshire, critics say that his campaign could stall in states where the truth has historically been less important, like Florida.

“At some point in this campaign, voters are going to get truth fatigue,” Dorrinson said. “Right now, the novelty of a politician who doesn’t constantly spew lies is grabbing headlines. But after months of Bernie Sanders telling the truth, voters are going to start wondering, Is that all he’s got?”

Dorrinson is just one of many critics who are eagerly waiting for the Sanders phenomenon to come down to Earth. “Telling the truth may be working for Bernie Sanders, but it shows a serious lack of respect for the American political system,” he said.”

The new and improved and upgraded online course “Radical Honesty: How to Get Over Shit and BE Happy” will be launched in October. It is designed to be part of the tipping point of the re-evolution of humanity that we need for our survival. Feeling a bit tipsy are you? We certainly hope so.

birthday party I will be 75 years old on September 8 (Come on out Labor Day Weekend (Sept. 5-8) for the party if you can. You may not be surprised to hear that my completely subjective opinion after 75 years on the planet is that Radical Honesty is the most important thing in the world. It is a primary source of tipping points, and when it tips everything changes.

Love,  Brad

P.S. Watch this. It is John Denver saying no to the old order and yes to the tipping from being killers to being lovers. It is one of the next big tipping points just around the bend.



Declare your personal independence (from antiquated and expired social structures of governance) and mutual interdependence (a new bonding with fellow beings through Radical Honesty) by joining The United States of Being today!
A Declaration of Interdependence for a New Millennium
(A Modification of the U.S. Declaration of Independence Based on 200 Years of Personal Growth)

When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature entitle them, a decent respect for the opinions of humankind requires that they should declare the causes that impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all human beings are equal, that we all have certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among human beings, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its power in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes, and accordingly all experience has shown that humankind is more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. Such has been the patient sufferance of all human beings colonialized by the currently existing world economy and government at the beginning of the twenty first century, and such is now the necessity that constrains them to alter their former systems of government.

The history of the growth of international corporations and national governments and the interactions between them in the twentieth century is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having, in direct object, the establishment of an absolute tyranny over human beings belonging to this planet. To prove this, let the facts be submitted to a candid world.

The governance of the United States of America, economically the strongest nation currently in the world, is unduly influenced and, in practical fact, controlled, by international corporations in alliance with military interests and quasi-military secret agencies and pro-military governmental bodies. The Congress of the United States, the judiciary branch, and the presidency do not operate independently from this influence. Through hired lobbyists and campaign contributions to both parties in an illusory two-party system, corporate money controls legislation to such a degree as to virtually eliminate serious opposition. The Congress, the courts, and the presidency have failed to pass or effectively advocate any campaign legislation that limits the way they, themselves, have come into power in the first place, based on limited and non-democratic corporate interests.

The budget for defense at the end of the twentieth century, when we are not at war, takes up too large a proportion of the Cross National Product. They keep among us, in times of peace, standing armies without our consent, and with secret agencies hidden from the citizenry, render the military independent of, and superior to, the civil power. There are at least thirty-six separate secret agencies whose funding, operations, or activities are kept secret from the populace in the name of national security. When egregious activities on the part of these military and para-military organizations are brought to light, the revelations are decades after the occurrence of the offending activity, rendering it impossible to have their activities curtailed by the people of this country until those responsible are no longer in power.

Health care is a privilege rather than a right. This privilege depends on how much money an individual has. Insurance companies of such size and wealth as to challenge the power of whole nations are in alliance with pharmaceutical companies of the same proportionate financial power who are also, themselves, in alliance with a medical establishment structurally dependent upon the largesse of corporate giants and vested in the status quo. These alliances can, and do, defeat all attempts at creating a fair and equitable health care system for people in the United States, while robbing even more of the remaining peoples of the world of that same opportunity. The combination of these forces in the United States of America has made it difficult to bring into being a more fair and equitable health care system worldwide.

The rule of law in the strongest nation on earth is a myth. The entire court system is corrupt, unwieldy, and uncorrectable. The criminal justice system is correct in only one way, its name: the criminal justice system. We are building new prisons at an unprecedented rate and populating them with persons whose lives were damned to be underprivileged at birth, and who have been educated and parented in such a way as to render them, for all practical purposes, immune to further learning for the rest of their lives. When the rule of law is mentioned it is in the context of trivial arguments in defense of righteousness, where valuing belief in the rightness of principles themselves for principle’s sake is held higher than compassion for living human beings. Such reification of belief, in any values whatsoever, such that they are holy and untouchable, keeps all that is felt in response to the needs of living persons from being acted upon and mitigates against the flexible creation of systems and structures that re-create those things needed for humanity as needs occur.

The largest economic enterprise on earth is illegal drugs, most of them pain killers. This is kept in place in the world by the United States of America through the decades-long so-called “war on drugs” in which the alliance of the righteously religious, the health care establishment, the para-military secret agencies and the legal system supports the sustenance of the whole corrupt enterprise of “illegal drugs” by outlawing selected drugs and bringing pressure to bear on other countries to do the same. In this way the illegal market can be maintained, the racist criminal justice system remains in place, and the jobs of the hard working but incompetent police and military personnel can be sustained. People who are missed by the illegal drug trade are even more expensively supplemented by the legal pharmaceutical industry, which gets to advertise its biochemical solutions to physical symptoms sourced by the social malaise of which they are such an important part.

The separation of parties in the United States of America is also a myth. The one party with two names is owned and operated by international and national corporate financiers, and keeps the populace under control through secret agreements, lobbying, and ownership of the public media. The ongoing news media show is controlled continuously by the selfsame corporations. For example, in the argument between the “two” parties about setting the minimum wage, Republicans advocate a smaller figure and Democrats advocate a somewhat larger figure for an hourly wage. The entire discussion is limited to the “conservative” advocates of the smaller figure and the “liberal” advocates of the larger figure. Those amounts are all that get discussed in the media. This circus continues and is reported and interpreted by a media controlled by corporate interests so there is no meaningful discussion of what a minimum wage means. The possibility of creating a new minimum wage based on some standard other than the well-established tradition of control of the marketplace by a very small minority of established financiers and institutions is never raised. The media only reframes what they are given in an attempt to sensationalize the information provided for them. Dempublicrats (Dem Public Rats!) remain in control This is the circus that is set out for the entertainment and substitute for thought for the public at large, and for their continual drugged state, in case the illegal drugs provided and the legal pharmaceutical industry’s efforts have not sufficed.

In every stage, these oppressions are maintained and reinforced by a government of representatives, whose elections were bought through advertising in multi-million dollar campaigns financed by established interests. Those of us who have petitioned for redress have been ignored or answered by repeated injury. We have warned them from time to time of the danger of their attempts to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of our rights under the Constitution of the United States and the government and regulations set up under that constitution to no avail. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred here in our native land and in locations throughout the world, to disavow these usurpations of power that would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence with each other. We have repeatedly demanded campaign finance reform and had everyone in both parties in favor of it and “trying” to do so for the last thirty years and that reform has not occurred.

The Congress, the judiciary and the presidency of the United States of America have been bought. They are deaf to the voice of justice and consanguinity. Their allegiances are all to the same interests and controlled by the same alliance of corporations working in skillful accord with each other. They owe their elections and their appointments to the people with the money.

We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity that denounces our separation, and hold these current elected representatives of industry, as we hold the rest of mankind, enemies in war, in peace, friends. This is a war of minds and hearts of persons whose primary value is compassion, against persons whose minds and hearts are committed to conquest, control, and domination of other people. This is a war to be fought not on the battlefield, but in the family, the local community, the marketplace, the Internet, the personal conversation with friends, intimate conversations between couples, conversations with strangers and every other avenue of communication and aspect of life on earth, from now on out, until the conclusion is assented to by all people, that we are of one cloth and do honor each others’ humanity above the pleasures and sufferings of conquest and control.

If we could represent the whole world’s population in current times as a village of one hundred people, with all existing human ratios remaining the same, it would look like this:

100 people representing the current world population

  • 17 would be unable to read.
  • 37 would suffer from malnutrition.
  • 23 would not have adequate shelter.
  • 7 would have a college education.
  • 48 would live on less than $2.00 per day
  • 22 would own or share a computer

(updated from Marianne Williamson’s book, The Healing of America)

We, the founders of a new order, intend to change the fundamental structures that maintain this obscene balance of wealth and power. This limitation of possibility for most of humankind can only be changed by changing the economic order upon which it is dependent, holding our voices and sheer numbers in alliance with each other as more important and more powerful than the numbers of dollars held by the limited few. We assert that people are more important than money and we intend to build a new world order that reflects that, even if it means proclaiming a new form of money.

We, therefore, as representatives of the United States of Being, do, in the name of, and by the authority of, the good people of this world, solemnly publish and declare, that these United States of Being are, and of right ought to be, a Free and Independent Nation, that we place as secondary all allegiance to any government whatsoever that requires of us, directly or indirectly, a participation in the violation of basic human rights to food, shelter, health care, a decent education, and the restoration of ecological balance of the earth for all of the people of the earth, now and in the future. We proclaim ourselves to be the creators of a new context and a new country called the United States of Being, within which reside all governments, enterprises, corporate entities and affiliations of humankind and under whom all allegiances to other persons or collective bodies are subsumed, toward the goal of making a world where physical warfare exists no more, starvation ends, adequate shelter is provided for all people, ecological balance is restored, health and well being are assured and the fundamental education of all peoples is provided for. And for the support of this declaration, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.

Brad Blanton
Sparrowhawk Farm, July 4, 2015

Click here to sign the Declaration and JOIN us!

P.S. Let people know you are a member of the United States of Being. Just walk right up to them and say, U.S.O.B.  They will know immediately what you mean. Brad

whats_your_story_2A STORY ABOUT STORIES

Our minds are made of memories of events organized into stories. We all live our life in stories. We learn all kinds of stories from family, books, other people, TV, etc. We constantly make a lot of them up for ourselves.

Our very identity is a story. We think of ourselves as a story of what was done to us and what we have done and how and why we did it.

There is nothing particularly wrong with that. It is just what human beings do. But there are a few pitfalls that can immensely affect the quality of our lives!

We sometimes settle for stories that give us less satisfaction than we want but appear to be safe. We do this particularly when we are scared. We are scared by, of course, some remembered story about danger.

We prefer a story of feeling safe, or right—more than feeling free and happy—particularly if we were scolded or controlled a lot when we were growing up.

A lot of parents get scared about raising their children and teach them to live in a worrisome story. They teach cautionary tales to their kids for their protection. That doesn’t always work so well. Sometimes it doesn’t work worth a shit. Sometimes being scared into excessive carefulness is the stupidest thing you could possibly do (think of all the Republicans running for President in the U.S. right now, for example).

And even though we like to feel safe and protected and not at risk, we also like stories that make us feel really good—really happy and proud and in love and laughing and ecstatic—even though being really happy is a little scary for most of us. This is one of the central dilemmas of in-depth psychotherapy.

So we have many stories that tell us not to risk safety in order to feel better and we settle for safety first even if there is a possibility for feeling good—but still a chance of felling worse. “The risk ain’t worth it” was the message a lot of us got from a lot of people living in scary stories themselves who wanted to protect us from being in a tragic story.

Unfortunately bad stories kill people’s spirits and eventually kill people themselves. Zombies are people who got moralized to death.

We have been warned, and sometimes taught from experience, to be careful not to have too much fun. Lightnin’ Hopkins responded to that in a song: “They’s a whole lotta things that I ain’t done. But I ain’t never had too much fun!” …meaning, “WTF you talking about??”

Parents even lie to their children when they tell them honesty is the best policy.  Honesty as a policy is bad advice, bullshit and a lie. If you have Anne Frank in the attic and a nazi knocks on the door and asks “Are there any Jews in this house?” you probably want to lie to the sonofabitch.

Then parents and other moralists compound the lie by saying honesty is the best policy because it is morally right. It turns out they were right about honesty being good, but for the wrong reasons. One of the best freak events of human history (and herstory as well) is that honesty is the best policy, but for entirely different reasons.

Radical Honesty, because it brings about the destruction of a lot of pat stories that are no longer useful or were all bullshit in the first place, is the very source of personal liberation and social revolution.

Because after the pain of the overthrow of the government of the mind stories, comes A GREAT SCARY JOY! Suddenly there is a new openness to the possibilities of play in the fields of the Lord!

We have hundreds of stories. Stories of creativity, love restored and renewed and new love found, the love of children, being loved by children, being loved by others, laughing a lot, getting laid, being appreciated and inspired by inspiring others! The list goes on! Scary but rewarding but risky Radical Honesty generates heroic wonderful moving enlightening joyful stories galore!

Honesty is the best policy because it destroys the moralism of the mind. Moralism is a lie. Moral righteousness is a false story. Talk to any Republican or Baptist or Catholic or Shiite or true believer of any ilk and you will see what I mean.

But even though joy is much more fun than carefulness and avoiding being vulnerable and believing in belief, it takes courage. The element of uncertainty, or risk, often makes us choose safety within a limited story. The bliss of storylessness or the life of greater stories is scary.  Love is scary. We have been told too many stories about not having too much fun, and we believe in them unconsciously in spite of ourselves. Safety is comforting and a sometimes a pretty good story but not all that joyful. Jail is protection but is not known for its bliss.

There are limited rewards (but better than nothing) that come from living in a story of being jilted, or unfairly treated, or incorrectly blamed or abused even though innocent. People feel sorry for you, and that turns out to be a safe place to hide. Stories of victimization are safer than upsetting the applecart by being honest about anger and disappointment and sadness and joy, feeling our way through those things, and getting to forgiveness.

The rewards of Radical Honesty (getting to forgiveness and renewed connection with loved ones and “the peace that passeth understanding” the scary bliss of joy for no good reason) are passed up to avoid the risks of being vulnerable and less in control of avoiding things we don’t like.

So we trade the joys of living lives of connection and forgiveness and contribution to others because the risks are (1) unbearable reward or (2) failure. We compromise for the stories of carefulness and safety, and being right about having been wronged. This is a less rewarding use of stories.

Uncertainty is not as bad as we make it seem. A lot of our tombstones could say: “Lived a life more dampened by stories of justification than enriched by stories of risk and glory.”

Shared Stories: Scary Intimacy

There is a lot of joy living in shared stories. But there is less certainty when you are honest about things that change. Feelings, judgments, sensations and lots of other human things change right in the middle of relationships between people. You don’t get to determine how the story comes out all by yourself. You can’t be sure what some other folks might come up with, even though they may also come up with something better than you have so far. You can win and you can lose in shared stories. Stories can end before you want them to and you can’t be in charge of whether they do or not or how they turn, or how they turn out.

As a psychotherapist and leader of workshops in personal growth I have heard a lot of stories. For about 25 years I have been hearing people take an hour and tell the entire story of their lives to everyone in the group in our Radical Honesty Eight Day Workshops.  And then over the next months following each workshop we get to hear each others changes in our stories and new stories altogether. Hearing all those stories further changes all our stories. There is a way of having your stories change be a thrill instead of a threat. Sharing a roller coaster ride is more fun than a train wreck!

One of the main benefits of what we teach with our stories is courage. We provide encouragement by true stories of courageousness. We give inspiring examples of people taking risks and winning after losing over and over again due to too much carelessness or too much carefulness. We teach people how to be willing to lose, and try again until they win. We teach the general skills and then give specific coaching that makes losers into winners, one at a time, and how to keep doing it.

We love each other because of the openness and vulnerability and willingness to risk losing for the sake of more honest and intimate connections. And we show you how and why it is worth the trouble it takes to get there by being in love ourselves from having done it.

Social Revolution Based on Personal Liberation

Empathy for others as well as self leads to not just charity, but to demand for justice and social change. So the end result of both effective psychotherapy and successful personal growth is that the person always becomes an activist. Anything short of that is not successful personal growth or psychotherapy. Any person who claims they have gained the benefits of therapy who is not an activist is a liar.

Our new collective story about honesty and empathy is in conflict with many other cultural stories. So we admit it. We are a cult. We are The Radical Honesty Cult. And we plan to take over the world.

We promise to give you the courage to become an activist for justice and fairness and the ongoing renewal of the joy that comes from that.

We have a new revised power packed online workshop coming up in October 2015. It is called. The Bloomin’ Human: How to Get Over Shit and BE Happy. Stay tuned.