Monday, 10 May 2010

RTNews 111

RT® News

A magazine on Neuro Linguistic Programming in Education

No 111 May 10 2010

Hello Everyone,

There seems to be a great deal of discussion and research around at the moment on the topic of making changes to education. Maybe this has always been the case, but it seems that many people are seeking solutions to the problems and challenges that educating in today’s schools are bringing. A recent visitor to Buenos Aires was distinguished Chilean doctor and researcher Claudio Naranjo, who gave a free lecture at the University of Buenos Aires. He has focused his efforts in recent years on Education with the aim of finding ways to help it to serve the needs of human beings more than it currently does. The subject of his very interesting talk was the benefits of meditation in Education.

We remind you that there is still time to join our Practitioner Certificate course in English. See information at point 3. below.

Have a great week,

Laura and Jamie


1. It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to! Influencing change.

2. Dr Claudio Naranjo

3. Practitioner Course 2010

4. Calendar of activities for 2010

5. Workshops and coaching

6. Subscribing/Unsubscribing to our e-zines in English and Spanish and an invitation to visit


1. It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to! Influencing change.

In the 1960’s, a singer called Lesley Gore had a pop hit about how she felt when she saw her boyfriend coming into her party on the arm of another girl. It was her party and she’d cry if she wanted to. No amount of persuasion form her girlfriends would convince her otherwise.

And so it is with the world. As much as we might insist that someone ‘cheers up’, ‘looks on the bright side’, ‘makes an effort’, or ‘forgives and forgets’, if that person does not wish to do so, we can try until we are blue in the face but they probably won’t budge. Even if they do yield to our pressure, the smile they put on or the sorry they say is likely to be merely a token. And this is a perfectly valid choice. Likewise, if someone doesn’t want to resolve a conflict they won’t. (And that is a subject for a whole discussion in itself!)

In NLP, we have the presupposition that ‘Each person is unique’ and with this goes the freedom to choose uniquely, to act or not to act, to follow someone’s advice or to do the opposite. So, if Lesley wants to cry, let her cry. If she wants to ignore her boyfriend, she can. If she wants to slap his face she can do that too. If we try to oblige her to do what we think she should do, we may well find her meeting this with resistance and any effort by us to change her mind may be wasted energy.

And yet, this is a drama that is constantly played out every day all over the world. Trying to make others do what we want them to. Either we achieve our desire or the others dig their heels in and refuse to accede to our demand. In both cases resentment often builds up. This is the consequence of our use or abuse of power.

As NLP writer and trainer Michael Grinder has taught us over the last twenty years, we have another option if we really want to see people change their behaviour. We can use ‘influence’. To distinguish influence from power it is important to see it as coming from another angle and with another purpose. Influence is not obligation but rather showing that alternative behaviours are possible. The integrity of the person influencing is shown in the fact that she represents or models the desirable behaviour but does not oblige the other to adopt the same behaviour. Simply by acting the way she does, the other starts to realize the merit in the action. For example, someone who is speaking very loudly and aggressively can be influenced into a change of delivery by being in a place where people speak to him in quite, soothing and measured terms. It is a means of communication that they can see as being effective, at least in that context. Sometimes, this can be a revelation to someone who lives in a context where shouting and aggression are the currency of human communication. It is always useful to remind people that there are other ways of doing things.

Influence rather than power respects the other by offering choice, not by imposing. To seek to Influence implies modelling useful actions and then letting these actions speak for themselves. We say ‘imitation’ is the sincerest form of flattery’ and in this case it can be true. Influence, when it is used ethically, allows people the space to be themselves. It may not always solve the immediate problem and sometimes we need to employ other tools and set certain limits, but it is an elegant and desirable way to encouraging changes in the behaviour of others. Grinder reminds us that influence is a choice of management and that it is not the same as being accommodating, hoping the students will follow our lead and then eventually exploding because they fail to pick up the hint! On the other hand, an inappropriate or overuse of power can have unsatisfactory effects as well and many of us can testify to examples where the old style of ruling a classroom by means of power no longer has the same useful results.

Further reading: Grinder, Michael, A Healthy Classroom, Michael Grinder, 2000

Website link:

© Resourceful Teaching 2010


2. Dr Claudio Naranjo

Background Claudio Narano is a Chilean who started his professional life as a doctor, specialising in medical anthropology and psychology. His interest in the whole person soon led him to the United States to Harvard and to Berkeley Universities and what has been a lifetime exploring different ways to help his fellow human beings. He became a close friend of Carlos Castaneda and one of the three successors of Fritz Perls in the field of Gestalt Therapy. He has been instrumental in introducing many different schools of learning and healing from the East into the US via his non-profit institute SAT. Among these are the Enneagram which he studied with spiritual teacher Oscar Ichazo. The Enneagram, which is a model of personality types, is derived from ancient Sufi wisdom.

Since the 1980’s, he has been involved in different projects emanating from his SAT institute. One of these is SAT in Education which now operates in several countries and aims at bringing about a change in education. The SAT programmes are based on Gestalt therapy, the Enneagram, meditation and music and have now been accredited as a means of teacher training in Catalonia and in Italy.

Dr Naranjo visited Buenos Aires in April to give a talk entitled “Meditation and its influence in the field of science and education”. The two-hour seminar was a chance to be in the presence of a wise and learned teacher who admits that his interest in education came later in life but that now he is convinced that unless we make changes in the way we educate young people, our global society is going to continue in its current unhealthy and aggressive state. During his talk, Dr Naranjo referred to a wide variety of issues affecting modern life linking them in different ways with tremendous erudition and insight.

Summary of talk

Dr Naranjo began by painting a fairly grim picture of the state of education in the world today saying that most education systems were only useful for passing exams and for learning how to sell oneself in the job market, etc. This had created a world where the ‘survival of the fittest’ ruled supreme. What we needed was a more benevolent and wise society where there was room for love, solidarity and compassion. This would allow us to recognise our natural or animal side and help us to integrate this back into who we are. He feels that the skills of integration, synthesis and harmony are lacking in today’s society and preventing us from being more complete individuals.

Naranjo went on to say that meditation could be the element that education needs to help people connect with their spiritual side. As meditation does not imply the favouring of any one religion, it could therefore be introduced into different systems and not be seen as contradictory to prevailing religious teaching.

The benefits of meditation

a) tranquility – the ability to stop and be at peace.

It is much in need in the Western world today which has becoming a place where we feel to feel alive corresponds to a sense of feeling ‘agitated’. We forget to simply ‘be present’. This is a precondition to communicating with ourselves and discovering the answers to the question, “Who am I?” If we cannot be in touch with ourselves how can we establish a connection with another?

b) letting the mind flow – accepting life as it comes without wanting to control everything.

The quality of letting life flow through us is something we have as children but lose as adults. With it often goes the capacity for instant happiness, something especially lacking in the objectives of education. Modern technology is also distancing us from natural pleasures and affection. Naranjo suggests that we should take a leaf out of Dionysus’s book and give into spontaneity and joy in nature. One reason for this is our general need to develop our intuition and ability to follow hunches which it is often the deciding factor in achieving success.

c) attention – to the here and now, to the outer and inner.

On this point, Naranjo emphasized our lack of attention to what is going on inside us and what we really feel. As a result of these repressed feelings, there is much need for psychotherapy in the world. The repression of feelings has led to more criminal activity and phenomena like pornography. Our tendency is also not to stop and think about our feelings now but to fill the present with the past and the future. Being able to focus one’s attention inside is a fundamental part of the journey to self-knowledge.

d) contact with the divine – to what we value

Meditation is a means of having contact to what is sacred for us, to what is holy, to our creative imagination and to a greater force. Primitive societies understand the need to recognize this but again our secular societies have tended to repress this or channel it through religious codes. So how can we get in touch with our metaphysical and evolutionary self? Naranjo suggests it may be through music, which is intimately devotional. Great music is useful to get to the love of ‘God’, to access higher emotions and to reach a more transcendental emotional level than we do on a day-to-day basis. In the talk Naranjo played some intense Oriental devotional music and invited us to empathise and connect with it.

e) detachment - an element of wisdom

For him, wisdom is being able to see life from a certain distance, which is what meditation promotes. It helps us to develop an attitude of ‘nothing in excess’.

f) love – the attitude we most need

Dr Naranjo concluded his talk by discussing what science had to learn from meditation. He said that he felt that science had not made us any happier and that in many cases we had simply replaced the dogma of religion with the dogma of science, however useful science had been for mankind. What we needed now was to explore the intuition and the non-rational side of our lives, the side that corresponded to the subconscious and thereby we could reclaim words like love and spirit into our existence and start moving towards a happier, more generous and better world.

© Resourceful Teaching 2010


3. Practitioner Course 2010

The second module of our new Practitioner certificate course will be held on Saturday May 22. The course runs this year and next and involves between 130 and 150 hours of direct training in the form of practical activities and guided practice spread over 16 modules. It gives students acquaintance with the methodology and many of the techniques comprising NLP and leads to an internationally recognised certificate as Practitioner of NLP in Education.

It is still possible to join the course in this second module and we have a couple of places available.

For a course syllabus and further details see our website: or send a mail to or

Venue: Versailles, Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires

Time: One Saturday per month 9.00 – 17.00

Next Module: Saturday May 22

Investment: 260 pesos per module

The course includes written material and a full bibliography and morning and afternoon refreshments. As much as we encourage reading, the real value of NLP is the putting it into practice and our students have constant opportunities to employ what they learn in their daily work and lives.

To enroll, please contact us for an enrolment form. Your place is guaranteed upon payment of the first module.

The Practitioner certificate with Resourceful Teaching offers you the chance to get an NLP certification and practise your English at the same time!


4. Calendar of Activities 2010

We are publishing below a list of the main events for Resourceful Teaching for the next few months. As each date gets closer we will give you more information and we will of course be updating the calendar with new dates as they arise.

May 22 2010 Second module Practitioner course in English


5. Workshops and Coaching

If you would like a workshop or training in your city or town, please contact us soon as we have only a few dates available on weekends each year.

We can offer you workshops as listed in the website or design something especially for your needs. In English and in Spanish. Please contact or if you are interested.

Laura is also available for Coaching. If you wish to advance in your career or personal life and wish to design a plan of action to do so, why not have a coaching conversation with her. Contact:,


6. Subscribing/Unsubscribing to our e-zines in English and Spanish and an invitation to visit

To subscribe simply send a mail to: with your name and city stating 'subscribe' in the subject box. To unsubscribe, follow the same procedure but write the word 'unsubscribe'. We only send this e-magazine to those who have expressed the desire to subscribe by the above means.

To subscribe to the Spanish sister e-zine, send a mail to Laura at

NB En contacto has different articles from those which appear in RT News and they are about NLP and other associated areas.

Visit our blog teaching resourcefully – nlp in the classroom

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