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Five Minute Articles For Your Consideration

The Humbling of Larry Laveman: Part I

The Humbling of Larry Laveman: Part I

June 21st, 2018 — Journal Entry: Today Charles Krauthammer died. It’s a sad day for journalism. I will miss his commentary and insight.

I was an admirer of Charles Krauthammer. He was a fair minded, well-spoken and highly intelligent writer and commentator. I periodically saw him on TV while channel surfing the news and commentary of the day. Whenever Krauthammer was on I would linger. He had an awkward look, and always seemed a little uncomfortable in his chair, but his reporting was so good that I would put down my remote and listen. Continue Reading

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The Song of Psychotherapy: Billy Joel, The Beatles and You

The Song of Psychotherapy: Billy Joel, The Beatles and You

Billy Joel, the great modern-day doo op master, openly talks about how he takes old music and makes it his own. He’s not original in his musical abilities, yet everything he does is distinctly Billy Joel. Going from a classically trained pianist to a rock and roller, Joel began creating his own tunes when he got bored playing Mozart and Beethoven. If you listen carefully you can hear the notes from the old 60’s song Wipeout in the opening to Angry Young Man. Joel is one of the best-selling singer song-writers of our generation and a good example of how our uniqueness evolves as we differentiate from that which precedes us. Continue Reading

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The Five Rules of Marriage

The Five Rules of Marriage

I recently had the good fortune of speaking at my daughter’s wedding. I wanted my speech to be memorable and personable but I also wanted to keep it real. So I created the five rules of marriage. Trying to distill the rules down to five wasn’t easy. It’s like the writer Somerset Maugham once said, there are five rules of writing only no one knows what they are. Drawing on all that I know, here are my five rules of marriage. Continue Reading

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The Horror of Las Vegas: Trying to Make Sense Out of Nonsense

The Horror of Las Vegas: Trying to Make Sense Out of Nonsense

There is light and darkness in the world. On October 1st, in one senseless act of terrorism, darkness descended upon Las Vegas. Hours later Tom Petty, a rock and roll troubadour for the past 40 years, died when his heart gave out. One of his most famous refrains comes from his hit I Won’t Back Down; You can stand me up at the gates of hell/But I won’t back down. We should not back down either. Continue Reading

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To My Spiritual Ancestors

To My Spiritual Ancestors

Spirituality exists far beneath the ordinary reaches of our senses; you have to go deep to get to it. It is in constant communication with the surface above, yet it can often feel like a distant and unique world all its own. To be spiritual is to be aware of how the surface level and its deeper counterpart mingle in meaningful ways that connect us to something greater than ourselves. In that regard, our spiritual ancestors are more than just our lineage. Continue Reading

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When Feelings Get in the Way

When Feelings Get in the Way

Feelings are important, but sometimes they get in the way.  I have found that the more time we spend talking about our feelings the less time we spend thinking about how to resolve them.  If we dwell for too long on our emotions we risk becoming “emotionally indulgent” rather than action-oriented.  Our emotions are like anything else that we feed too much; they just keep getting bigger and bigger.  Continue Reading

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On Kissing

On Kissing

The internet is an unruly place when it comes to social commentary. Last December Hillary Duff posted a picture of herself kissing her four year old son on the lips at Disneyland and the internet quickly began to growl. The happiest place on earth turned to “ew”. Duff suggested viewers who found the photo distasteful to click a quick unfollow. There was an equally harsh response when Victoria Beckham posted a similar picture of herself kissing her daughter on the lips for her birthday. To the normal viewer, these kisses are pretty innocent and are nothing more than sweet reminders of the love we feel for our children, but not to UCLA psychologist Dr. Charlotte Reznick. Continue Reading

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Get Real! The Myth of the Authentic Self

Get Real! The Myth of the Authentic Self

Lera Lynn, whose slow raspy voice evokes an undeniable sense of sorrow, sings, Lately I’m not feeling like myself/when I look into the glass I see someone else/I hardly recognize this face I wear/when I stare into her eyes I see no one there. The emptiness of the song’s lyrics represents today’s lack of Authenticity that many people are confronting. Listening to the song I was reminded of a Gestalt therapy workshop I attended in 1977. Irv Polster was working with a group member who was trying to come to terms with her life. She felt lost, no longer able to identify with her current situation, no longer able to recognize herself in the mirror. She cried out, “I’m not myself.” Continue Reading

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Political Karma: Why the Election of Donald Trump is Important to You

Political Karma: Why the Election of Donald Trump is Important to You

Now that Donald Trump has won the election, and we’ve all had a chance to digest the outcome, I would like to offer a perspective you don’t often hear about in the media; it includes looking at the election through a karmic lens to help balance out the enormous release of emotion after a very long, tiring and highly contentious election cycle. Continue Reading

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Naïve Realism: Bias and Betrayal in Everyday Life

Naïve Realism: Bias and Betrayal in Everyday Life

A good example of Naïve Realism occurs in an episode of Seinfeld where Elaine is convinced by her latest boyfriend, Blaine, to see the film “The English Patient”. She’d rather not but the movie she wants to see is sold out. Upon exiting the movie Elaine emphatically says, God, that movie stunk! Continue Reading

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