America has been in the throes of a “healthy body” explosion for a few years now. It seems that virtually every day the latest and greatest weight loss “miracle” diet hits the Internet and bounces around in the Spam filter. I think that this physical body based phenomena is intimately linked with, if not in fact driven by, the aging out of a generation of American’s who really and truly think … “It’s all about me.” is a valid mantra.

Stepping away from a the rather jaded and hedonistic quest for eternal physical beauty another phenomena, and one with far greater potential, is quietly moving forward, namely, the revolutionary practice of accelerated mental functioning protocols. Ways of increasing a person’s ability to efficiently and effectively use their Mind are probably as old as the Human species. Recorded history is replete with references to practices now regarded as esoteric and arcane that held a pronounced emphasis on developing and refining the attributes of the Mind.

I used the word “revolutionary” in the paragraph above to differentiate between the practices of old and those currently being employed for several reasons and will touch briefly on a couple of them. My personal preference is to set the date for the present trends in achieving high end mental functioning as being the year 1973. In 1973 Gerald Oster, M.D., Mt. Sinai Hospital had an article published in The Scientific American in which he quantified the brain waves of experienced Yogi while they were in a deep meditative state. I close my eyes … think back … it is late 1973, and once again I am in the high school library, sitting on the left hand side of the room … where all the real comfortable chairs were J I remember picking up the magazine with Dr. Oster’s article and reading it from start to finish more than a few times. Later that same day, I hooked up with some friends of mine who were in local garage bands and in a couple of hours we had a primitive beat generator up and running.

Shortly thereafter, in 1975, John Bandler & Richard Grinder introduced the world to Neuro-linguistic Programming (hereafter, NLP) … and I was all over it. NLP has arguably had the greatest impact on the practice of Psychology since the Freud era, and unlike Freudian thought which eventually fell out of favor, NLP continues to develop to this very day. I was fortunate enough to have Dr. Richard McHugh as my Mentor in NLP. Richard is widely regarded as the first pure NLP Psychologist. A man of incredible energy even in his late 70s, which he attributes to daily practice of Yoga, he is also, unknown to many, a Jesuit Priest. Dr. McHugh has spent well over 40 years setting up free public education centers throughout the impoverished areas of India. I do not know if Richard is a “Saint”, however, in all my years and many travels around the world he is the closest thing to a Saint I have ever encountered.

Author's Bio: 

Several years ago, I refined my practice of Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP) under the direct supervision of Richard McHugh, Ph.D., the first pure NLP Psychologist. I continue to follow Richard's "Mind with a Heart" path to this very day. For the past 40 plus years I have formally studied several traditions attributable to the Han or Hakka. Said systems are typically regarded as both esoteric and arcane, namely, Chi Kung (Nei Gung & Wai Jia). Regardless of characterization, my personal experience over the years firmly convinces me they work. Furthermore, I first began using binaural beat brain wave entrainment protocols in the summer of 1974, shortly after reading Dr. Gerald Oster's article published in the late 1973 edition of The Scientific American. At the moment I am finishing up a MA in Education program and preparing to enter a MS in Psychology program. I remain forever the Student.