In IS 2/7/1, Lucian says:
Fools, all of them.
And me, of course. I couldn’t help but laugh then. Lord of Darkness, indeed. Lord of Fools would be a far more fitting description. Perhaps I could find a suitable translation in the ancient language and use it for my title, and as a new family motto.
Now I should not have thought that. Indeed, I should not think at all, for what could a fool be thinking of but further foolishness?
Get a hold of yourself, I commanded then, shook myself like a dog and entered the house.
This simple pattern, namely that "a fool cannot help but think of more foolishness" triggered a one year project on stress research in 2003 which proved what Lord Lucian had observed to be absolutely true.
Stress causes people to think consecutively more foolish things, in a direct cause and effect relationship.
People will also enter into a downward stress spiral, as they become more and more stressed by their own thought/emotions, and it gets worse and worse.
If it gets bad enough, the pattern terminates in high end behaviour problems such as rage syndrome, self mutilation, or having a panic attack.
This in and of itself was extremely valuable in understanding the processes by which these high end disturbances come into being; and how to intervene in them.
The real bonus however was the discovery that people who think they suffer from low self esteem, for example, or low self worth, actually routinely are too stressed and that is why they think/feel/believe that.
De-stress a person, and negative thinking simply disappears, like fog when the sun rises.
This is a crucial understanding in the treatment of confidence problems, and all the previously mis-diagnosed low self esteem problems - the person is simply stressed and thinking fool's thoughts which have no substance, and no direct relationship with any injuries they may have sustained in the past.
In EFT treatments, for example, which rely on being able to state what the problem is in order to bring about a successful treatment, enormous amounts of time were wasted on discussing non-problems, such as "nobody loves me!" or "God hates me!" or "I'm worthless ..." which are really only fool's thoughts, not statements of fact at all.
They are indicators that a person is too stressed, and simple stress relief gets them to a point where they can think and talk about what is really stressing them to the point of turning into the proverbial fool who cannot help but think (and do!) further foolishness.
Pre-facing all energy treatments with simple stress treatments first is a revolutionary treatment approach and this was made official policy for GoE trainings in 2012.
It took a while to get from In Serein out into the real world, but now it is in action and there are people being treated differently, more smoothly, kinder, with faster and more direct results because of Lord Lucian's observation that day.
Here is an exercise from 2005, based on the Fool pattern, slightly adjusted to the audience in question, to end this story:
MM60 187: What Could A Fool Be Thinking ...?
This is a really neat EMERGENCY STOP thought pattern which I believe should be taught at kindergarden, and to everyone!
It's called the Fool pattern, and it comes from a gentleman who has managed to spiral himself down into more and more disturbed thoughts, which is what happens when you get stressed.
The more stressed you are, the more foolish all your thoughts become, naturally - the thought patterns become consecutively more disturbed and illogical.
The higher the stress, the worse this gets, and it is important to have at some point an EMERGENCY STOP or exit point so we don't end up DOING something we will most certainly regret when clarity has been regained.
In brief, this gentleman was thinking about all the things he'd done wrong, and decided that he shouldn't be calling himself a doctor of psychology, but a doctor of fools instead. At this point he stopped and said to himself, "Alright, I shouldn't have thought that, for what would a fool be thinking but further foolishness?"
This caused him to laugh, shake his head and walk away.
This is what I want you to do to practice this pattern.
Remember the last time when you went on a fool's spiral in your own head and started to think VERY foolish things, such as:
I'll never make it. - No-body loves me. - God hates me. - I'm so useless. - I shouldn't even try ...
Remember the last time such a thing happened to you and remember what you were thinking.
Now, and before you make those sort of statements, think clearly, "What should a fool be thinking, but further foolishness?" and realise that you have entered into the Fool state, where EVERYTHING you think is just not worth the paper it wasn't written on.
Stop, take a deep breath and step away from that console!
To know when we are on the verge of entering into real foolishness, and to be able to STOP and step away, is probably one of the most long term useful skills a human can acquire, so I recommend this highly.
From: 60 Second Wealth Boosters (free at this time, January 2012).
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