Category: Spiritual Motivational Articles

Perceptual Intelligence: An Introduction

Double Vision: Is Thinking or Talking about Aliens Risky?
 

Introduction to Perceptual Intelligence: The Brain’s Secret to Seeing Past Illusion, Misperception, and Self-Deception

by Dr. Brian Boxer Wachler.

With the rare combination of lucid verve and solid scientific grounding evocative of Oliver Sacks or Malcolm Gladwell, Dr. Brian Boxer Wachler guides readers on a fascinating tour of the bedrock of our existence the way our senses perceive everything and everyone in the world around us.

Dr. Brian (as he’s known to his patients) has pioneered treatments in vision correction, has published more than 100 scientific, peer-reviewed journal papers and book chapters, and is the first choice of many doctors for their own eye treatment. In his new book (October 2017), he offers a fascinating, accessible description of how we see what we see and why this affects every aspect of our lives.

Montel Williams, whose MS (multiple sclerosis) was misdiagnosed for years, has provided a foreword and shares: “Dr. Brian has done a masterly job of exploring the underpinnings of human perception, along the way helping us understand our motivations and behavior.” He goes on to say that “Dr. Brian has taught me a lot about illness perception and why maintaining a positive outlook is critical to effective treatment and eventual outcome.”

This is just one of the areas Dr. Brian addresses. As a surgeon and ophthalmologist who has devoted his career to the field of vision correction, he is fascinated by the connections among our five senses — sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch — and how our brains register and interpret them to distinguish reality from illusion.

Defining Perceptual Intelligence (PI) as how we interpret and occasionally manipulate our experiences to distinguish fantasy from reality, he explains that PI relies heavily on our senses and instincts, but it is frequently influenced and distorted by our emotions and memories. As with other forms of intelligence, some people have higher PI than others, but PI can be improved with both awareness and practice and can be used to make desired changes in our lives.

Exploring the brain’s ability to interpret and make sense of the world, he explains, with concrete examples and case studies, why our senses do not always match reality, and how we can influence the world around us through perceptions, inward and outward.

Brian Boxer Wachler, MD, is the world’s leading authority on keratoconus, refractive surgery, and creator of the revolutionary I-Brite® Eye Whitening procedure. He has devoted his career to the field of vision correction. For two decades, he has been a pioneering doctor with a thriving career in clinical, academic, and laboratory settings. He boasts an unparalleled history of awards and accomplishments — many of which have singlehandedly changed the practice of ophthalmic surgery. He is currently the medical director of the eponymous Boxer Wachler Vision Institute in Beverly Hills and a staff physician at Los Angeles’ famed Cedars Sinai Medical Center. More information at www.perceptualintelligence.com.

"Life happens. Life in the flow."

We learn over time that nobody can solve our problems, but someone can guide you how to solve the problem. You may receive guidance through a teacher, a guru or even strangers that you run into every day. As we practice yoga we learn that the more we know, the less we truly know. Every day I am reminded how much I truly do not know; a very humbling experience.
Yoga teaches me to be present. To just live for being and enjoying life as it is right NOW. Not ten minutes from now, no five days ago, but right now. We are taught to get out of our heads, to release worries and fears of the past or the future and to only live for this very moment. Presence.

"Lead me from untruth to truth, lead me from darkness to light." ~ Buddha

Through yoga we are reminded that we do have a dark side as well as a light side. We are not to repress the dark side, but embrace that side of our Self. We are the yin and the yang. We ultimately cleanse the dark stuff we hold inside. We shine the light on this. We must make friends with dark side. Both positive and negative balance out the whole. Daily practice refines and improves our inner vision to see our Self more clearly. We no longer need to run from fears. Face them and say I'm not running from you anymore. So much is in our heads, so much dark is only in our heads, self-doubt judgment betrayal. Yoga grounds the body so that the light and dark sides of ourselves become clear. So much is truly untrue. But as we diligently practice we are able to find the middle ground and walk our centered balanced line in life. We gain balance in centered lightheartedness. We can have harmony in both light and dark.

"Yoga tells us that the world is actually a projection of our own thoughts and we can modify our inner world to manifest into our outer world. When our inside realm is at peace and in harmony, our outer world shines this projection back at us."
~ David, Jiva Mukti Yoga co-founder

Yoga is observation.

We can observe our world and see what part that is in us is begin reflected back to us. We can then see what part of us needs modification or adjustment in order to have our outer reality reflect back to us the peace, happiness and love we so greatly desire and deserve.

Yoga is already inside of you. Happiness is there. Yoga helps you peel away the onion layers to get to the core. To freedom. The deepest Divine connection to the Ultimate Light Source.

Come out of wanting and back into acceptance and Joy. A yogi or yogini can turn any situation into bliss. That is a yogi. Yoga is being now. Ultimate yoga is meditation. Just BE.

Yoga is love.

"Love is the light that dissolves all walls between souls." 
~ Paramahansa Yogananda

Through a dedicated practice of all forms of yoga we can participate in the world with a sense of freedom, unaffected from trauma, depression, anger, etc. The freedom is balance in both.


Maggie Anderson is a Yoga & Spiritual Teacher, Reiki Master Teacher, Integrated Energy Therapy® Master Instructor, Soul Coach®, Past Life Coach, Magnified Healing® Master Teacher and Angelights Messenger. She is the author of How I Found My True Inner Peace and Divine Embrace. You can contact Maggie at SpiritualCompassConnection.com.

"Follow Your Bliss. It's Your Spiritual Compass."

What is Perceptual Intelligence?

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An Excerpt from Perceptual Intelligence: The Brain’s Secret to Seeing Past Illusion, Misperception, and Self-Deception

by Dr. Brian Boxer Wachler.

I’ve seen different definitions of Perceptual Intelligence (PI), but I like to think of it as how we interpret and occasionally manipulate our experiences to distinguish fantasy from reality. PI relies heavily on our senses and instincts, but it is frequently influenced and distorted by our emotions and memories. Just as with other forms of intelligence, some people have higher PI than others. However, PI is an acquired skill. It begins with awareness and requires practice before it becomes habitual. So you may find yourself initially overreacting to a situation or circumstance, but with proper knowledge and a different perspective, you may start to ask yourself: Am I interpreting the situation correctly and making the best possible choice?

In their excellent book The User’s Manual for the Brain, authors L. Michael Hall and Bob G. Bodenhamer write, “The problem is never the person, never the experience, never what we have been through. The problem is always the frame, always the mental movie, always the higher frames running the movie.” It’s how we interpret what happens to us. If a bird with good aim uses my head for target practice, I could either get ticked off or say, “It’s good luck!” (which I learned from my Brooklyn-born dad).

When we have a vague memory of a painful incident, what purpose does it serve? Why bother keeping that potentially incorrect perception of the event when you can make something good come of it? This is where the sniper ability of Perceptual Intelligence comes in. A well-developed PI can identify and take down a faulty idea that tries to sabotage you. Having high PI is recognizing that your mind is more plastic than you think and can be molded and reworked as needed. PI can be improved, just like any other skill, such as driving a car, playing a sport, or learning an instrument.

Many people have survived traumatic incidents and made life decisions based on these experiences. Their perspectives on these events shaped their lives in either a positive or negative direction. It was not the incidents themselves that determined the outcomes; it was the individuals’ perceptions of the incidents and how they reacted afterward that formed their future. The “heroic” survivors we see on TV or read about in books merely applied principles of PI, whereas the “victims” remained immobilized.

Sharpening Your Perceptual Intelligence
As I’ve said, since PI is a learned skill, it requires practice before it becomes a habit. Someday you may find yourself initially reacting unfavorably to a situation. Rather than jumping to a negative interpretation, you can catch yourself and ask: Is this the best choice? If not, you can tap into your PI, change your perspective, and achieve a more favorable outcome.

My main objective in writing this book is to help you find your aha! moment regarding how you perceive and react to the world from the inside out. It is my sincere hope that, as you follow me on this journey, you will discover a heightened and enlightened understanding of the mystery that is human perception and make better decisions based on what your senses and intuition are telling you. In the chapters that follow I will reveal to you how understanding and maximizing PI is the key to what lurks behind your thoughts, behaviors, and feelings. You’ll learn about (not necessarily in this order):

Why some people can’t resist “cat poop coffee” at $100 a cup
How the brain helps us make sense of the world
When the mind is healing us and when it’s doing more harm than good
Why we hold on to our illusions
Why we feel compelled to “return a favor”
What is really happening when we see aliens in the middle of the night
How low PI helps us enjoy art more
Why some people see Jesus in their cornflakes
How inflated PI can influence the PI of the masses
Why some athletes and teams are winners and others chronic losers
How reciprocity hijacks our perceptions
How celebrity personas manipulate us
How Mark Twain’s thoughts on masturbation reveal his high PI
Why Kim Kardashian West has so much social impact
How cults brainwash people with low PI
Why our perceptions of time are so often distorted
When to listen to your gut

A hundred years from now, we may not even recognize the science that is being practiced today. We will almost certainly have completely mapped the brain by then, yet we may still be no closer to understanding how we perceive the world. In the future, as with today, we will continue to perceive. Somehow, every day we will convert the inconceivable into the conceivable, as do all living things in their own inimitable way. As you’ll see in the next chapter, it all starts with the human brain.

Fasten your seatbelt and brace for impact.

Brian Boxer Wachler, MD, is the world’s leading authority on keratoconus, refractive surgery, and creator of the revolutionary I-Brite® Eye Whitening procedure. He has devoted his career to the field of vision correction. For two decades, he has been a pioneering doctor with a thriving career in clinical, academic, and laboratory settings. He boasts an unparalleled history of awards and accomplishments — many of which have singlehandedly changed the practice of ophthalmic surgery. He is currently the medical director of the eponymous Boxer Wachler Vision Institute in Beverly Hills and a staff physician at Los Angeles’ famed Cedars Sinai Medical Center. More information at www.perceptualintelligence.com.

Excerpted from the book Perceptual Intelligence: The Brain’s Secret to Seeing Past Illusion, Misperception, and Self-Deception. Copyright ©2017 by Brian Boxer Wachler. Printed with permission from New World Library — www.newworldlibrary.com.

"Life happens. Life in the flow."

We learn over time that nobody can solve our problems, but someone can guide you how to solve the problem. You may receive guidance through a teacher, a guru or even strangers that you run into every day. As we practice yoga we learn that the more we know, the less we truly know. Every day I am reminded how much I truly do not know; a very humbling experience.
Yoga teaches me to be present. To just live for being and enjoying life as it is right NOW. Not ten minutes from now, no five days ago, but right now. We are taught to get out of our heads, to release worries and fears of the past or the future and to only live for this very moment. Presence.

"Lead me from untruth to truth, lead me from darkness to light." ~ Buddha

Through yoga we are reminded that we do have a dark side as well as a light side. We are not to repress the dark side, but embrace that side of our Self. We are the yin and the yang. We ultimately cleanse the dark stuff we hold inside. We shine the light on this. We must make friends with dark side. Both positive and negative balance out the whole. Daily practice refines and improves our inner vision to see our Self more clearly. We no longer need to run from fears. Face them and say I'm not running from you anymore. So much is in our heads, so much dark is only in our heads, self-doubt judgment betrayal. Yoga grounds the body so that the light and dark sides of ourselves become clear. So much is truly untrue. But as we diligently practice we are able to find the middle ground and walk our centered balanced line in life. We gain balance in centered lightheartedness. We can have harmony in both light and dark.

"Yoga tells us that the world is actually a projection of our own thoughts and we can modify our inner world to manifest into our outer world. When our inside realm is at peace and in harmony, our outer world shines this projection back at us."
~ David, Jiva Mukti Yoga co-founder

Yoga is observation.

We can observe our world and see what part that is in us is begin reflected back to us. We can then see what part of us needs modification or adjustment in order to have our outer reality reflect back to us the peace, happiness and love we so greatly desire and deserve.

Yoga is already inside of you. Happiness is there. Yoga helps you peel away the onion layers to get to the core. To freedom. The deepest Divine connection to the Ultimate Light Source.

Come out of wanting and back into acceptance and Joy. A yogi or yogini can turn any situation into bliss. That is a yogi. Yoga is being now. Ultimate yoga is meditation. Just BE.

Yoga is love.

"Love is the light that dissolves all walls between souls." 
~ Paramahansa Yogananda

Through a dedicated practice of all forms of yoga we can participate in the world with a sense of freedom, unaffected from trauma, depression, anger, etc. The freedom is balance in both.


Maggie Anderson is a Yoga & Spiritual Teacher, Reiki Master Teacher, Integrated Energy Therapy® Master Instructor, Soul Coach®, Past Life Coach, Magnified Healing® Master Teacher and Angelights Messenger. She is the author of How I Found My True Inner Peace and Divine Embrace. You can contact Maggie at SpiritualCompassConnection.com.

"Follow Your Bliss. It's Your Spiritual Compass."

Immaculate Perception: Would You Pay $28K for a Grilled Cheese Sandwich?

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by Ember Grant

(Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal.)

The unicorn is one of the most famous and endearing of mystical creatures associated with fantasy, mythology, and magic. Images of the unicorn have fascinated people all over the world for centuries. Such a powerful and easily recognized symbol can have an important place in magical practice.

Symbols are integral to our lives, especially for magic and visualization. Often the success of a spell relies heavily on the symbolism that is chosen and how deeply it affects the user. Many people are drawn to magical creatures and have an affinity for certain ones, collecting various images of that particular creature. Since unicorns are among the most popular, here are some ways you can incorporate unicorn symbolism into magical practice. Even if you have never been particularly fascinated with magical creatures, getting to know them by investigating their characteristics can add a new dimension to your personal power.

irst, consider what the creature symbolizes to you. Unicorns have many standard associations, but we can build on this by adding our own personal characteristics or feelings. For example, I first fell in love with unicorns as a child, so to me they represent not merely innocence, but a playfulness and lightness of spirit, a carefree time. As I grew older, that sense of joy and happiness was tinged with the melancholy moments of adolescence and the unicorn matured with me to become an escape from the sometimes painful events of growing up. But more than anything else, I associate the unicorn with imagination and purity—and the beautiful free spirit we need to recapture to avoid becoming jaded by the sometimes harsh realities of life. In short, the unicorn is hope and possibility.

But you may have different associations and feelings when you look at an image of the unicorn. That's fine—the point is to use the symbolism for something meaningful to you and to focus on these feelings in your magical practice. Unicorn imagery can be used in spells for healing, peace, comfort, and inspiration. Still others may associate the unicorn with love, or to some they may represent bravery or strength. Choose what the unicorn means to you and incorporate that image into your spells and meditations.

Begin by collecting a variety of images. Or, if you already have a substantial collection, take inventory to see what you have and think of ways you can use them. These items may be statues, drawings, jewelry, clothing, or anything else you can find.

The most basic way to get started is to place a unicorn statue or other type of image on your altar or use it to represent deity. Unicorns have a long history of being associated with spirituality. And of course, statues and images can be placed in other special places in your living and working environment. Wear unicorn jewelry when you need to get in touch with the qualities the unicorn possesses. Place drawings where they can remind you of your goal.

You can anoint statues for special purposes to be placed around your home, in various rooms or outside. This would be ideal for a protection spell. I have a unicorn in almost every room of my house. They're usually tucked away in a subtle location, but they're present to remind me of my goal of keeping a youthful spirit and remembering the time when I felt that first touch of magic. There are other countless ways to incorporate unicorn imagery into your magical practice. Because of the healing associations with the horn, a unicorn image would be excellent in a healing spell or one simply for general health and well-being. Unicorns are often symbols of vitality and strength. You can also create a unicorn altar with different styles of statues to represent each element. Imagine different encounters with the unicorn for whatever needs you have. If you feel the need for comfort or healing, visualize yourself being healed by the unicorn. Create a detailed scene in your mind and make it as vivid as possible. For strength and confidence, visualize yourself as a unicorn or try a visualization of yourself riding a unicorn to create a feeling of freedom or to relieve stress.

Read about unicorns—history, legends and stories for inspiration. Create unicorn art; even if you don't have a talent for drawing or painting you can create collages of unicorn images or try sculpting with clay. Write some unicorns stories and poems of your own—create your own myths. If you have children, ask for their help and create a story together.

Cultures all over the world have claimed unicorn stories and legends of some kind. This creature is popular for a reason—it speaks to us on a symbolic level that can be very powerful. Tap into that power by discovering, or rediscovering, what the unicorn means to you.

The Secret of Life Unicorn Spell
Did you ever meet someone, an elder perhaps, someone wise and calm, joyful and seemingly ageless, who seems to possess a deep inner peace? Someone who seems to have lived forever, seen everything and has the answers and advice to help us with all our problems? If we don't know someone like this, we wish we did, or we long for these qualities in ourselves—the patience and understanding to overcome any obstacle and the ability to learn from our challenges, while keeping a youthful glow and enjoying each day, and finding beauty in everything and everyone around us. Sounds impossible, right? We often attribute these characteristics to fantasy figures. But there truly are people who live this way, yet if we don't personally know any of them, it seems like fantasy. So, let's use fantasy as a bridge to reality, through the magic of the unicorn. Legends of the unicorn speak of them as wise and immortal creatures. This spell is for the unicorn to help us age gracefully with a youthful carefree spirit. This is for people of any age, to ensure the lively and energetic qualities of vitality and joy and, in addition, to help us learn patience and gain wisdom.

You will need: a unicorn statue of any size or color, a piece of white ribbon, and essential oil or other fragrance blend of your choice. Use your intuition when selecting the oil or blend of oils. Choose a scent that uplifts you and makes you feel cheerful or one you associate with happy memories. Sprinkle a few drops of the oil on the ribbon.

Visualize the unicorn, a wise and experienced sage. She has lived forever and endured many challenges with grace, and now she is bestowing her magic upon you. Make this visualization as detailed as you desire. If this proves difficult, suspend your disbelief; pretend you are a child again. You meet a unicorn in the wild. Because you carry the white ribbon, the unicorn knows you are a kindred spirit. This ribbon is your link to the unicorn. You drape it around the unicorn's neck and the two of you walk as companions through the forest. The unicorn confers wisdom upon you. This special wisdom contains the secrets for a happy life, whatever that may be for you.

Tie the ribbon around the statue. This is symbolic of your meeting with the unicorn and your initiation into her mysteries. The secrets will unfold throughout your life as you need them. One of the ways your higher spirit can help you discover what you need is through the use of symbols; the symbol of the unicorn can be a gentle and inspiring teacher and guide.

Speak this chant as you tie the ribbon:

Unicorn of legend, Unicorn of myth,
May your youthfulness and spirit stay with me.
Unicorn of mystery, Unicorn of magic,
May your endurance always offer possibility.
Unicorn of purity, Unicorn of power,
May your strength be at my side in every way.
Unicorn of inspiration, Unicorn of peace,
May your gentleness and grace bless all my days.

Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal. Copyright Llewellyn Worldwide, 2006. All rights reserved.

"Life happens. Life in the flow."

We learn over time that nobody can solve our problems, but someone can guide you how to solve the problem. You may receive guidance through a teacher, a guru or even strangers that you run into every day. As we practice yoga we learn that the more we know, the less we truly know. Every day I am reminded how much I truly do not know; a very humbling experience.
Yoga teaches me to be present. To just live for being and enjoying life as it is right NOW. Not ten minutes from now, no five days ago, but right now. We are taught to get out of our heads, to release worries and fears of the past or the future and to only live for this very moment. Presence.

"Lead me from untruth to truth, lead me from darkness to light." ~ Buddha

Through yoga we are reminded that we do have a dark side as well as a light side. We are not to repress the dark side, but embrace that side of our Self. We are the yin and the yang. We ultimately cleanse the dark stuff we hold inside. We shine the light on this. We must make friends with dark side. Both positive and negative balance out the whole. Daily practice refines and improves our inner vision to see our Self more clearly. We no longer need to run from fears. Face them and say I'm not running from you anymore. So much is in our heads, so much dark is only in our heads, self-doubt judgment betrayal. Yoga grounds the body so that the light and dark sides of ourselves become clear. So much is truly untrue. But as we diligently practice we are able to find the middle ground and walk our centered balanced line in life. We gain balance in centered lightheartedness. We can have harmony in both light and dark.

"Yoga tells us that the world is actually a projection of our own thoughts and we can modify our inner world to manifest into our outer world. When our inside realm is at peace and in harmony, our outer world shines this projection back at us."
~ David, Jiva Mukti Yoga co-founder

Yoga is observation.

We can observe our world and see what part that is in us is begin reflected back to us. We can then see what part of us needs modification or adjustment in order to have our outer reality reflect back to us the peace, happiness and love we so greatly desire and deserve.

Yoga is already inside of you. Happiness is there. Yoga helps you peel away the onion layers to get to the core. To freedom. The deepest Divine connection to the Ultimate Light Source.

Come out of wanting and back into acceptance and Joy. A yogi or yogini can turn any situation into bliss. That is a yogi. Yoga is being now. Ultimate yoga is meditation. Just BE.

Yoga is love.

"Love is the light that dissolves all walls between souls." 
~ Paramahansa Yogananda

Through a dedicated practice of all forms of yoga we can participate in the world with a sense of freedom, unaffected from trauma, depression, anger, etc. The freedom is balance in both.


Maggie Anderson is a Yoga & Spiritual Teacher, Reiki Master Teacher, Integrated Energy Therapy® Master Instructor, Soul Coach®, Past Life Coach, Magnified Healing® Master Teacher and Angelights Messenger. She is the author of How I Found My True Inner Peace and Divine Embrace. You can contact Maggie at SpiritualCompassConnection.com.

"Follow Your Bliss. It's Your Spiritual Compass."