PROFESSOR RICHARD G. BENEFIELD
(Philosopher, Theologian, Psychologist, Terminologist, Teacher, Author)
AESOP MARKETING CORP.
(World Wide Publication)
LOS ANGELES CALIFORNIA
“LOGIC: CATALOGUE OF NEW FALLACIES”
Fallacies in Politics, Religion, Economics,
and Racial and Ethnic Claims.
PROFESSOR RICHARD G. BENEFIELD
P.O. BOX 661
WHEN QUOTING OR REFERRING TO THIS BOOK
PLEASE GIVE CREDIT TO THE AUTHOR
ALL FORMER STUDENTS
WHO TOOK MY PSYCHOLOGY COURSES
STAY NORMAL ALMOST
I. FIRST LAW 11
WE GET MORE OF WHAT WE REINFORCE
II. SECOND LAW 12
THOUGHT AND LANGUAGE ARE INSEPARABLE
III. THIRD LAW 15
HUMAN BRAIN AND MENTAL PROCESSES ARE COMPLEX
IV. FOURTH LAW 18
MENTAL PROCESSES CAN BE IMPROVED OR IMPEDED
V. FIFTH LAW 20
HUMAN INTELLIGENCE IS A VARIABLE
VI. SIXTH LAW 23
HUMAN BRAIN CAN DEVELOP CREATIVITY
VII. SEVENTH LAW 26
BRAINS THINK ABOUT DEATH AND DYING
VIII. EIGHTH LAW 29
HUMANS CAN BE PURPOSEFUL BEINGS
IX. NINTH LAW 31
HUMAN EMOTIONS CAN BE VICTIMS OF CIRCUMSTANCES
X. TENTH LAW 33
WILL (CHOICE) IS FREE BUT LIMITED
XI. ELEVENTH LAW 36
ATTITUDE CAN MAKE OR BREAK A PERSON
ATTITUDE ARTICLE 38
XII. TWELFTH LAW 39
HUMAN BEINGS NEED LOVE
XIII. THIRTEENTH LAW 41
HUMAN BEINGS NEED FREEDOM
ABOUT THE AUTHOR 46
MARIANNE L. ALLEN B.S., M.A.
Professor Richard G. Benefield is innovative in psychology. He is also an in-depth scholar especially qualified to research empirical phenomena and discover new facts if they are to be found. He never hesitates to critically examine new ideas and any new claims of knowledge. He digs into old knowledge realizing that other authorities were there first and a debt of gratitude is owed. Old knowledge at times is ready for a fresh mind. Fields which are places to carry on the right work are at times burned over fields.
Dr. Benefield always delivered informative lectures in psychology and other courses. He was once appointed university lecturer in behavioral sciences, and excelled in that position. He often researched new ideas, and then presented those to his classes.
The professor questioned the possibility of the existence of laws of psychology but never developed the idea in the past. Now he has developed the idea, and raised many additional questions. The theories are not without controversy and they are sure to motivate critical responses.
While there are laws in several other sciences, it might follow that we can expect to find laws in psychology, one of the most popular social sciences. If so, then Professor Benefield could be the person to discover those laws. His long string of earned degrees, almost thirty years of teaching in state university systems, private colleges, and seminary, provide a solid foundation for the required research. In addition to all of these things, Dr. Benefield was elected to lifetime membership in Pi Gamma Mu, the National Honorary Society for the Social Sciences. The United States Army also presented an award to the professor for the outstanding teaching of college psychology to military personnel. His other publications add experience to the present work.
“Laws of Psychology” is a challenging thesis in contemporary psychology.
Marianne L. Allen
Las Vegas, Nevada
“Laws of Psychology” is not the result of accident. Mr. Mark Joyner, former Chief Executive Officer with the Bodhi Tree Corporation, a world wide publisher, and now Chief Executive Officer of Aesop Marketing Corporation in Los Angeles, California, set up telephone discussions which included himself, Professor Win Wenger, Ph.D., of Gaithersburg, Maryland, and the author. Conversations included brainstorming about ideas or about new ideas. In discussing experiments in psychology I referred to a foreword in one of Dr. Wenger’s books. The book is a publication in Project Renaissance which Professor Wenger founded long ago. The Project sponsors research, experimentation, lectures, and publications on a world wide basis. No knowledge or questioned theories are alien to such an educational project. The Project has offices and outlets in the United States, and other countries, including Singapore. It is an objective, scientific, and creative organization.
Paul R. Scheele, M.A., wrote the foreword mentioned above. He mentions the “first law of psychology,” which was originally Dr. Wenger’s idea. This first law, according to the foreword is, “we get more of what we reinforce.” This appears to be logical. Dr. Wenger, a widely published author, is an educational psychologist. When I brought up the idea or theory of a law of psychology, Dr. Wenger said that one reason that it was mentioned was to motivate someone to question it and perhaps to develop the idea. I was influenced by his work.
The three of us discussed “laws of psychology” mainly originating ideas. Mr. Mark Joyner with the publishing company, suggested that Professor Wenger, and I should research the idea. Professor Wenger did research on the theory. After our conversation I began seriously thinking about the research assignment. Then I gradually became involved in doing many hours of work and research on this writing.
One difficulty was not finding library research material on these laws as such. College class conversations and discussions added very little to our knowledge of psychology’s laws, and whether there are laws in psychology the way there are in various other sciences. This publication is about these laws. However the ideas are not exhaustive, and there is yet much research and other work to devote to the laws of psychology.
My thanks go to Mr. Mark Joyner for suggesting this assignment in the first place, and to Professor Win Wenger for lighting the fires of curiosity. Thanks also to my long time colleague, Marianne L. Allen for handling the foreword. She is a Cherokee-White lady who is an excellent scholar. Another word of thanks goes to Melinda Mitchell, B.S., a Scottish lady who assisted me in education and writing for a few years. But she went on to better things in Texas. My gratitude also to Kristy Morrell, A.A., B.A., an Absentee Shawnee Indian, and Irish lady, who helped me for several years in clerical and educational endeavors including social work. She went on to a counseling position with a psychiatric clinic.
My gratitude must also be expressed to Linda Dianne Holt, B.S., now of Oklahoma University, for her hard work on my writing and publishing projects for almost four years. She volunteers to continue with a huge amount of computer work, library research, proof readings, and discussions. She is a quality lady of Castilian Spanish, and Italian descent, with boundless determination.
As always I owe much to Alma June, my dedicated wife of more than 45 years. She is German and Creek Indian and skilled in social services, legal work, and music. She worked hard and long hours in doing the computer work on this manuscript. No one can know how hard she has worked all of these years. My thanks also to our three “kids” for their work over the years.
Since this writing is a pioneering work there are bound to be shortcomings and difficulties in it. There could be some other imperfections. I alone am responsible for any of these things. Furthermore there is no suggestion that any of the people mentioned in this book either agree or disagree with my ideas and conclusions.
Prof. Richard G. Benefield
Cameron (State) University
Lawton, Oklahoma USA
Laws of psychology is an awakening subject. Some theorists held that no laws exist in psychology. Others have surmised that if laws are posited then they are at most probabilities. Yet others have considered the laws of nature along with psychology. But there is no overall application of these laws in the natural sciences to the disciplines of the social sciences. Psychology is always called a social science because it deals with people in society. Each individual, even if in a room alone, is a social setting, a social environment. The room is within a society and within the world society. If a person can think (some mental patients cannot think), then that person thinks about a person, people, places, things, living, death, et cetera. Social phenomena are often involved in the thought processes.
We need a more complete basic idea of psychology. My definition provides this. PSYCHOLOGY IS AN EMPIRICAL SOCIAL SCIENCE. “Empirical” is the basis of empiricism. Empiricism began as a philosophical doctrine. It includes the claim that knowledge is derived or obtained through the use of the senses. Thus, sense experience is necessary for knowledge and certitude. Logic and the scientific method, together, are necessary to arrive at knowledge. Both induction and deduction are used. But much of the scientific knowledge is arrived at inductively.
The belief of the empiric, on the other hand, must, because of logical necessity, be rejected. An empiric believes that practical experience, by itself, is the way to knowledge. Practical experience has some value, but it depends too much on common sense. Common sense greatly erred in the past. Aristotle erred in his physics of falling objects. Common sense “told” him that two objects of the same material, but with different weights, would not strike the ground at the same time. He thought common sense was enough to know that. But Galileo did an experiment on this certainty. He learned that the bigger and heavier object would not hit the ground first. Both hit at the same time. If Aristotle would have only experimented! Scientific empiricism is necessary to obtain scientific knowledge.
DEFINITION OF PSYCHOLOGY: Psychology is the science of mental processes and behavior. This is the definition I wrote and used while teaching university psychology courses for many years. Some psychologists define psychology only as the science of behavior. But this definition is too narrow and too incomplete. Neither can it merely be defined as the study of emotions and behavior. Some psychologists coin or use different definitions of psychology. While these definitions are related to some subjects in psychology, they are not inclusive enough. Again my definition:
PSYCHOLOGY IS THE SCIENCE OF MENTAL PROCESSES AND BEHAVIOR.
This definition is complete enough to be a good working definition.
DEFINITION OF LAW: A scientific law is a statement or proposition about a phenomenon or about phenomena which does not change. Such law continues to be the same. It is not a variable. It does not change. A law can be generally accepted as a fact. Example: X causes Y and Z. Whenever this formula is viewed or encountered it is the same each time. In nature it is a law of nature. In psychology it is a law of psychology.
One example of a non-changing law is Isaac Newton’s First Law of Motion. The Law: Material bodies do not alter or change their motions unless a force or forces are applied to them. This law stood the test of time and is the same proposition each time that it is considered.
Laws are models which explain what happens. But laws are not mere examples
of model building only to have an explanation. On the contrary models must
be empirical. Neither are laws mere conventions as some critics have claimed.
These laws are real.
Newton’s three laws of motion and his law of hydrodynamic resistance are examples of laws in physics. Newton’s law of gravitation is another example.
Johann Kepler verbalized three laws of planetary motion. These are laws in physics and astronomy.
There are laws in geometry and in mathematics.
George Boole, a mathematician and logician, set forth what he called the “Laws of Thought.” His major interest was in dealing with mathematical theories of logic and probabilities. He reasoned that the laws of logic are ultimate and that they are mathematical.
While there are laws in logic, mathematics, and the natural sciences, it does not necessarily follow that laws are in each social science. However, the theories and induced conclusions of a social science must be critically investigated if a law is to be discovered. This task is momentous but not impossible.
I discovered the Law of Species Reproduction in biology and paleontology. This is a law of the natural sciences. The Law: A SPECIES OF LIFE ONLY REPRODUCES ITS OWN SPECIES. This is a foundation law. Mutations and billions of years for very slow changes from one species into another species is a philosophical metaphysics of science not an empirically verifiable fact! In biology and geology organic evolutionists are giving up on establishing a lengthy, drawn out sequence of an evolution, a chain of evolution, of one species into another species. The current theory is a “gaps theory,” and a “jumps theory.” (My postulation). Since there are millions of missing links in the fossil record modern theorists are claiming that some species changed into others in the “gaps” in the fossil record. Again when some extinct species of life is found in earlier fossil periods of time, and then previously non-discovered species are found in later fossil formations, some theorists are saying there was a great “jump” from one species into another, and no fossil record between jumps. (So much for the missing links). This is metaphysical speculation, and not scientifically verifiable. Obviously my Law of Species Reproduction stands the tests.
This writing sets forth and explains Thirteen Laws of Psychology. These laws meet the foregoing criteria for laws, and they are empirically verifiable. Each law will be the same each time it is encountered.
The law of effect is talked about in psychology. So are Jackson’s and Jost’s laws. So are the law of comparative judgments, and the law of selection; many people have heard of the law of averages but not that it is based on Bernoulli’s theorem. There are perhaps many laws of psychology. Others might be discovered. The thirteen laws of psychology herein are not exhaustive and are not intended to be. These thirteen are pertinent to other things and disciplines as will be demonstrated.
A principle of simplicity is relied on to an extent in the natural sciences and in the social sciences. In the natural sciences one reason for accepting the Copernican theory of the solar system instead of the Ptolemaic theory is that the Copernican theory is said to be the more simple of the two theories. Then in psychology, Lloyd Morgan’s Canon holds that in studying the behavior of an animal the most simple interpretation is probably the best.
Actually, in preferring a more or most simple theory, it does not necessarily follow that the simple is better or best. In fact there is an “Appeal to Simplicity Fallacy,” I showed in my logic textbook on the internet, world-wide web. See http://www.potentools.com/mind/logic/ It is as I have argued in lectures in the past, psychology’s worst weakness is logic.
Philosophy, and the philosophy of science, have the Law of Parsimony,
and it is problematic. It basically claims that whatever reasonable theory
in a science is the simplest, and the least burdensome, is to be preferred.
I agree that we need not be wordy or more lengthy or complicated as logically
necessary. Moreover we should be as clear and precise as possible. However,
facts and truths are at times very complex and, yes, burdensome. Furthermore
great knowledge is difficult and a great challenge. We do not become real philosophers by trying to find the easiest paths on which to be lazy as much as possible. Grinding work is mandatory.
The thirteen laws of psychology are stated as clearly and precisely
as possible. Hopefully they are adequate, but their adequacy must be determined
by someone else.
I. FIRST LAW
WE GET MORE OF WHAT WE REINFORCE
As mentioned in the preface, Paul R. Scheele, said that this is the “first law of psychology.” (Wenger, 1998).1 The law itself is a direct quote. We will accept this idea without building a hierarchical order of the thirteen laws. This law is obviously based on the concept of reinforcement in psychology. Reinforcement states that when a stimulus follows a pleasant or worthwhile response, then the frequency of that response will continue. When a person reinforces his/her behavior, then he/she gets more from that reinforcement.
There are positive and negative reinforcers. A financial bonus for a job well done would be a positive reinforcer, and it could motivate the employee to do an even better job in the immediate future. Other positive reinforcers could be the wise use of praise, well placed compliments, achievement certificates, medals, trophies, et cetera. When a child behaves in a desirable manner, then wise praise can increase the likelihood that the child will repeat the desired behavior. Criticism or scolding can motivate bad behavior or repetitious bad behavior. Punishment is not a reinforcer, but it is an aversive action. The threat of capital punishment is in this category.
A negative reinforcer can increase the likelihood that a voluntary action will reoccur. For example if a person thinks that he will be hated by doing act XY, then he will perhaps refrain from doing that act. When the threat of hate is removed, then refrain from that act is more likely to continue.
Some psychologists consider psychology to be a helping profession, but some other psychologists reject this idea. Some psychologists, as other people, have altruistic and prosocial personality traits while some others have the opposite type of personality traits.
Professor Win Wenger is a creative author who has produced many writings. He demonstrates his interest in educating people, and in helping people to achieve. Dr. Wenger shows his love of helping people to reach more self-actualization in several of his publications. One example is his book, “How to Increase Your Intelligence.”2 Another example is “A Method for Personal Growth & Development.”3 There are also other examples. Wenger’s theory of education includes the use of the First Law of psychology.
It is not always necessary for a person to be psychologically normal, this loaded term notwithstanding, in order for some reinforcements to be effective. Personality disorders, psychoses, or abnormal behaviors can drastically reduce the effectiveness of reinforcers. Some normal college students claim that they want to study although they engage in little if any studying -- not burning the midnight oil! However, it is part of the job of a concerned and caring professor to work with such students, and it is possible to motivate some of them to succeed.
Effective and producing behavior which leads to the increase in knowledge, and in intellectual growth is worth the effort and work required to make it pragmatic.
Psychology’s First Law is one of real value.
II. SECOND LAW
THOUGHT AND LANGUAGE ARE INSEPARABLE
Can a person think witrhout using terms or words? Try it. If you think about love, sleep, money, comfort, and so forth, then you are thinking in terms, i.e., language. If you think about thinking or about not thinking, the same thing happens. A person thinks in terms. Terms and words are language. A term is a form of expression. It can be a professional, technical or scientific expression. A term can be a logical subject or logical predicate in a proposition. A term can be any one of three elements (terms) in a categorical syllogism. A term is a word which can be used with more formality. A word is a linguistic form. A word can be used in isolation (free form) or in combinations with other letters or words (bound forms). Psychologists and other professionals should develop word awareness, and not fall into the trap or habit of word blindness. It is possible to “read over” an important term or word. UNDERSTANDEST thou what thou readest?
Many writing psychologists agree that thought and language are inseparable, intertwined, and “go together.” While a deaf mute can undergo special communications training, the thinking yet depends on signs and words. Sign language and lip reading help.
A child is born with brain cells and with the ability to learn and develop language. As the new born infant develops he/she will acquire the language of his/her environment. A child in an English speaking home will learn English if that is the only language. The child will not learn Zulu or an Apache Indian language. Each environment is a learning experience and a haven of socialization. A child will learn much of the behavior of a parent or caregiver. A child learns what he/she lives.
When a baby is born he/she comes equiped for learning and experience; these things were in the baby while in the womb. John Locke’s theory of the baby brain as a tabula rosa (blank tablet) is undergoing much critical discussion today. A baby at birth can learn, mimic, and be conditioned. When one of my grandchildren, a granddaughter, Brandi, was born she was brought to her mother’s room. She was placed in a hospital basinet to be washed and cleaned. I told the nurse, “Wait! I want to talk to her.” I then said, “Brandi,” got her attention, and stuck out my tongue at her. When I did this the fourth time she stuck her tongue out at me. She was less than one hour old! She was soon conditioned to the stimulus, her name, “Brandi,” and to the response, sticking out her tongue. When she was less than one year old my wife was helping her stand up on the porch. I said, “Brandi,” and she stuck out her tongue, and it made a cute picture. As she got older it was more like acting like a brat. However, she outgrew it when the stimulus stopped.
A child acquires and develops language as part of growing and becoming older. Developmental psychology demonstrates the child’s stages of growth and the acquisition of language skills. Vocabularies and thinking abilities increase.
Human language is confined to the human species. A child raised with a dog and cat in the house does not acquire or develop the communication or “language” of the dog or cat. Neither does the dog or cat acquire human language. The dog and cat can recognize some sounds, e.g., their names, but neither can ever evolve human language. A parrot, myna bird, or crow with a clipped tongue, can mimic some human language words, but will not evolve human language. A chimpanzee, born and reared in a human home, with only human companions, will sound like a chimp. It will not develop human language. Neither will the human develop chimp “language,” but they can engage in some communication. At times some animals appear to have developed the ability to mimic some human language sounds but not human language itself.
It follows from the preceding claims that the human language is confined to the human species. Chimp “language” is confined to chimps. Dinosaurs “language,” communication, was confined to dinosaurs. Crickets communicate as crickets. Mocking birds as mocking birds. Gila monsters as gila monsters, and so on.
When I did graduate philosophy, and graduate psychology at the University of Oklahoma, Washo, the famous chimpanzee was there in the department of psychology. Washo was the subject of many experiments, treated like a human, conditioned like a human, et cetera. Yet, Washo was still a chimp, a smart chimp, but yet a chimp.
The foregoing facts simply imply another law with the second law of psychology. My discovery of a Law of Species Reproduction, and empirical facts establish the Law of Species Language Acquisition. (“Communication” could be used instead of language). The human species acquires human language. Animal species, e.g., squirrels, racoons, rattlesnakes, bats, vampires, et cetera, acquire the method of communication of each species. The same things are true about birds, insects, spiders, dolphins, whales, and so forth.
Ebonics, also called Black English, was recently in the news media a great deal. The fact is that some American Blacks speak so-called Black English, but many do not. There is some evidence that Ebonics includes some words, expressions, and grammar of some African tribal languages. If we can take a college course, “Introduction to Ebonics,” then we would learn a great deal. But many of the politicians and religionists are afraid of languages other than English, so they probably will be able to prevent an Ebonics course. (Gatekeepers). At the present time several American politicians and religionists are hotly opposing the teaching of the Spanish language. But the facts remain that bilingualism is a plus for education.
Whichever racial or ethnic environment a baby is born into, then that baby will acquire much of the thinking (thoughts) and language of that particular environment. For a person to be better educated and to gain more experiences in life, and to learn to think and reason much more logically, then it is important to “branch out,” and to gain much more from learning and life.
One problem, which can become a problem for almost anyone is that a person’s life can “pattern out.” Such a pattern can become a habitual way of living one’s life. A person can habitually become accustomed to living within crises, and many of these can be self-caused. Negative life patterns can be devastating to continuing happiness, and can thwart success. Such living can deteriorate into a behavior pattern which guarantees ongoing stress, pressure, and conflicts. This can be psychologically and physically damaging. Such a pattern can be a trap which the victim is hardly aware of. Escapism from negative feelings can include alcohol and/or other drugs, smoking, sexual practices for some relief, thoughts of suicide, and suicide itself. A person’s health and life can eventually be ruined and destroyed because of this “patterning out.” Early death is certainly a possibility.
A person can need psychological counseling or psychiatric therapy to break destructive life patterns. One thing which must be changed is the way of thinking. Instead of thinking that things will continue as they are a person must learn to think that he/she can find constructive ways to change the ruinous pattern. Self-direction must be learned and used. The person must also learn to change the use of some words. Avoid thinking that, “It is useless,” or that, “It can’t be changed,” or that, “I can’t.” There is an old saying that, “Kain’t never did do nothing.” “Can’t do” must become “Can do” unless a person wants to waste his/her life. A life is too precious to waste!
A wise teacher once said, “As a person thinks in his heart, then so
is he.” Mostly negative words and thoughts, and the lack of will and desire
to change to something better can destroy human purpose and a meaningful
life. Such a person should stop ruining life. Remember also that this “patterned
out” person affects everyone in the home environment. A parent can ruin
a child or children because a child can learn from the modeling to live
a patterned out life also. The home environment is the place to be a healthy
model, a healthy thinking, and healthy talking model. A child can certainly
be ruined in a dysfunctional home environment. Dysfunctionality is contagious.
People are subject to the second law of psychology but they need not be ruined by it. A person can learn to work to change defeatist circumstances. Instead of thinking, “I am always tired,” (notice thinking in words), one can go to a physician to find the reason for such a feeling. Then appropriate actions can be taken.
While teaching in evening studies programs for a state university, I worked in the daytime as a state social worker, and later directed an American Indian tribal social services department. Research and experience indicate that many people learn dependence. And many people learn helplessness. They “can’t because they think they can’t.” Many people who develop the “welfare habit” become PWCs, that is, Professional Welfare Clients. Moreover, their children, living in a public assistance (welfare) environment learn a trade. They learn to depend on, and to live on welfare. Welfare is beneficial when a person really and honestly needs it. But it is a welfare trap for people who would prefer to sponge and to be lazy rather than work. Welfare can at times be a blessing. At other times it can be degrading and ruin human motivation and human purpose. Welfare can become a way of talking, thinking, and acting. It can itself become a real psychological problem for a public assistance recipient. But many people change, escape, and work for a much better human existence.
I saw some women on welfare who learned it from their mothers, who learned it from their grandmothers. They learned to live off of the working taxpayers. Their lives had “patterned out.” Their living often meant many more babies born out of marriage, drunkenness leading to alcoholism, social diseases, crimes, and often jail, prison, or death.
Thought, language, words, actions, and lifestyles often go together. Psychology’s second law is in operation.
Language is composed of words and terms in which people communicate. Some village communications are patterned out communications. Such patterned communications and behavior can cause cultural lag, non-progressive thinking, violent practices, mythical religions, and ruined lives of people who are not aware of the ruin. They are patterned to think and accept their fate (fatalism). Language transmits expressions, ideas, emotions, myths, superstitutions, false beliefs, and many other things. A language includes words, expressions, signs, body language, et cetera. Instead of allowing thoughts and language to ruin our lives we ought to take control of our lives, and think and act in purposeful ways. Then think about something good, helpful, reasonable, pure, lovely, and true. We think negative and positive at times, but we can establish a new, better, and good pattern of human existence. A person does not have to live a ruined life!
Can a leopard change his spots? No but science probably can. But a human is not an animal. And a human can change if change is desirable. Some native tribespeople in Africa, in the past, developed a cultural pattern. When tribesmen would war against men of another tribe, and killed them, then they, as quickly as possible, would cut out the victim’s hearts, and eat the raw hearts. Cultures have traditionally been “heart cultures,” not “brain cultures.” Why did the victorious tribesmen not eat the raw brains of the defeated? This type of native heart thought and language continues to pervade world cultures today. Societies today are more “heart societies” than “brain societies.” They are given to emotions, emotional words, language, and actions; given to emotional thinking, and emotional feeling, instead of logical, and critical reasoning.
Almost everybody should see psychology’s Second Law.
III. THIRD LAW
HUMAN BRAINS AND MENTAL PROCESSES ARE COMPLEX
People exist in a world which loves simplicity but which is as complicated as hell itself.
Currently (1998) predominantly Hindu India, and predominantly Islamic Pakistan, have joined the nuclear age by testing hydrogen bombs. These heavily religious nations have already fought two wars against each other. Gandhi, with all of his mythical beliefs, was sickened because of the violence between Hindus and Muslims. He fell assassinated because of this violence.
The world. It is such a simple place. Or is it?
Human brains are the most complex organs in material existence. A person’s brain is very complex. As a complex organ the brain is a complicated structure. It has many connected parts, and is the control center and the receptive nerve center of the human body. It is far superior to the brains of dinosaurs, animals, reptiles, fish, insects, and birds. Because of the brain humankind can dominate the animal kingdom. There is no other organ which can compare with the human brain. This really should be a brain world not mostly a heart world, you know.
Biological psychologists are involved in studying the human brain and mental processes. (Recall the definition of psychology in the introduction). Brain surgeons, among other things, rely on brain biology. When Dr. Christian Barnard, the surgeon in South Africa, did the first human heart transplant, which was suaccessful, it hit the news media. The surgeon was then avalanched with mail from people, many of whom condemned him for changing a person’s religious beliefs. Heart recipient patients do not have their religious beliefs changed. Other mail asked if the patient’s beliefs changed. Some mail just opposed organ transplants. You see, the world is yet more of a “heart world” than it is a “brain world.”
Grayish matter, and not different colors as some brain charts might imply, has various parts, and it is an electrical message system. Geography of the brain can illustrate the various parts, and explain how messages travel through the body, and nervous system, actually systems, to the control and message center.
A brain is also the center of thoughts, language, and the controller and instrument of actions. Two major parts of the brain are the right brain and left brain. Although there are various theories about “the divided brain,” many biological psychologists think that the two parts work together and in harmony. But in science theories are subject to change. It is known that the two parts, or brain hemispheres, as they are called, can function separately, and independently of each other. The two parts are joined together by the corpus callosum. The brain design is construated for the two parts to function in a balanced manner.
There are theories of right brain, left brain specializations, and much of the theory is in the category of philosophical metaphysics, not mystical metaphysics.
Some theorists have held that language is more of a product of the left part of the brain, and that emotions are products of the right part of the brain. Various theories were promulgated about language directed brains and emotions directed brains, based on the prevelant control of one side of the brain or the other side. But these theories lack complete verification.
Logical reasoning, some theorists argue, is a product of both parts
of the brain in harmony. If so, and there is hemispheric balance, then
logical reasoning should direct the brain and the whole person. Emotions
or passions would not direct the person. This is a beautiful theory to
say the least. Some hypotheses, once verified, become science (fact), and
can be reasonably accepted. (A hypothesis itself is not a law). However,
in psychology, as in other sciences, some theories which appeared to be
reasonable, and were accepted by many people, turned out to be false. Phrenology
was one such theory.
Professor Win Wenger has written on the importance of greater thinking and on the use of both hemispheres of the brain. I told philosophy, logic, and psychology classes over the years that the human brain is almost limitless in thinking and learning. The brain develops the most complicated computers and other scientific stuff. Professor Wenger, and Susan Wenger wrote, “Your Limitless Inventing Machine.”4 The brain functions like an ultra complex machine. It is always active even when a person is asleep. Brain power is almost unbelievable. Yet the great power is there.
Dr. Wenger developed the science of psychegenics, which among other things is designed to help a person use both sides of the brain. Another of his creative books is “Beyond O.K.: Psychegenic Tools Relating to Health of Body and Mind.”5 The book is a self-instructing course, and can also be used as a college textbook in education or in educational psychology. Some experiments with Wenger’s methods were conducted in some colleges in the eastern United States. I hope to have volunteers in my fall (1998) social psychology course for further experiments.
Many people want to pursue wisdom and knowledge. They are interested in increasing their brain power by using it more. They are habitual thinkers. Yet, some people, multitudes of people do not want to think. Neither do they want to be motivated to think. They are habitual non-intellectuals. Berbrand Russell, the great British philolsopher, said that most people would rather die than think, and as a matter of fact, they do. Such people settle for non-intellectual lives, and they settle to live far below human potential. They are not interested in developing to their strongest potential. Most live and die without trying.
The thought process involves perception and phenomena perceived. It involves the brain and the body. It also includes understanding, interpretation, and logic. This thinking power, with the ability to critically reason, and to follow logic and the scientific method, sets the human being above all of the animal kingdom. Brain cells, logical reasoning, and complex and abstract thinking elevate the human being above all other living creatures in the animal world. Brains actually give humans the power to have dominion over all other creatures in the animal kingdom. (Biologists and zoologists consider “the animal kingdom”).
The mind/body problem first began in theology with concepts of soul and body. It began in early Hebrew thought. Many thoughtful souls wondered about the mind and body, and if there would be or could be a continuing consciousness after death. Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) the greatest philolsopher of psychology, in his writing, “De Anima,” i.e., “On the Soul,” was one of the first to write about the psyche-logos, or science of, or study of the soul. Psychology would later become the science of mental processes and human behavior, and would include the study of and experimentation with animal behaviors. The soul/body problem would occupy theologians and philosophers down through history, and it continues today.
Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) tried to synthesize Aristotle’s theory of the soul with his own doctrine of the soul. Aquinas’ doctrine was dualistic. Aristotle thought that the soul is the thinker. But psychology would mostly separate from philosophy, and in psychology the brain is the thinker, and this is an empirically verified fact. Aristotle was pioneering in the philosophy of the soul, and in ideas about thinking. He was wrong about some things, but this does not substract from his great contributions and advancement of knowledge.
Descartes (1596-1650) was influenced by Aquinas’ philosophy (really theology), and decided to doubt everything, including his own existence. He reasoned that he had to be a thinking thing in order to doubt. So he knew that he existed. His famous cogito ergo sum, “I think therefore I am,” was influential in the mind/body problem. Like Aquinas, Descartes deposited a dualism. Descartes did much speculation about the mind/body problem. But he seemingly reasoned in a big circle and almost ended where he started. It appears at times that he was playing games.
It seems to many people today to be ridiculous to say it, but the brain is the thinker. The soul, the heart (blood pump), or an invisible substance, are not what thinks and reasons. Some philosophers thought/think there is an invisible mind inside the brain, and that it is the thinker. The mind, some kind of thinking substance, is thought to be one thing, and the material human body something else. Hence dualism. The essence (nature) of the mind is held to be mysterious or even mystic. Some people think that disembodied souls, or spirits, or minds, are walking around on the earth, or floating around. The whole mind/body problem can reduce to mystical metaphysics as opposed to philosophical metaphysics.
Cybernetics is the science of controlling highly complex machines. Many machines are tremendously complex and difficult to control and program. Some ideas include the claim that scientists (people) can eventually produce machines which think for themselves. Such machines, if they are self-directing, must yet have people to produce and control them. The machine is very non-likely to produce its own brain or mind.
If in the future brain transplants become a practice in medical science, then there will really be a brain-body problem. For example, if a truck driver is killed in a wreck, his brain is transplanted into the skull of a businessman, then the business man will be the truck driver. Or will he? The businessman, because of the trucker’s brain, would know the trucker’s wife, who would not know him. If the businessman meets some of his business collegues, then he would not know them, but they would know him. The businessman would know the trucker’s children, but would not know his own wife and children, although they would recognize him. If the trucker was a physically strong man, and the businessman was a physically weak man, then would the businessman be strong or weak? Who is the businessman?
There will be many medical, psychological, ethical, religious, Christian, Spiritual, and legal problems with brain transplants. Just wait!
When a human brain is transplanted, then where is the soul? Or, where are the two souls? What about the spirit? Will, choice, accountability? What else?
There are many problems and almost endless possibilities. Many sound like science fiction. Consider transplanting
A female brain in a male.
A male brain in a female.
A Black brain in a White person.
A White brain in a Black person.
Any brain in a different race.
Any brain in a different ethnic person.
A gay brain in a straight person.
A straight brain in a gay person.
Any animal brain in a human.
(Would the creature then be an animal or human?)
Any brains of other creatures in humans.
Human brains in other creatures.
And on, and on, and on. Then include the problems of various types of cloning. The future is upon us! People, so to speak, have not seen anything yet.
Philosophy’s traditional problems are not solved by philosophy. If philosophy
solved its problems, then that would almost destroy philosophy. Philosophers
down through the years continue arguing and rearguing mostly the same old
traditional problems. Future philosophers will continue the same routine.
Therefore it is left to the sciences, to philosophical scientists, to solve
philosophy’s traditional problems. Can they? Have they?
Law Three, which states that the human brain and mental processes are complex will have been verified again and again in the future.
IV. FOURTH LAW
MENTAL PROCESSES CAN BE IMPROVED OR IMPEDED
“Use it or lose it” is a clique heard about several things. Thinking is included herein. Use the brain power, once you are a scholar or intellectual, or lose much of that power. Some people start really thinking, studying, reasoning, and then taper off, or finally quit. They lose a lot.
“Process” pertains to operations. It includes the principle of a series of operations or events. Thinking, mental activity, is a process. This process can be effective, and can become more effective. Or it can be impeded. The operative process is normally efficient for the purpose. However, the mental processes can be hindered, retarded, or encounter obstacles. These processes can be shackled or obstructed. They can be extremely thwarted.
In order to understand a phenomenon a person must perceive it. Perception and sensation are required. “Perception” means that a person becomes aware of a phenomenon, for example, an object or thing designated by O. A person can comprehend or understand in the brain by or through sensation, i.e., sense perception. Sensation is the fact of conscious awareness through the senses, the five human senses. Obviously there are sight, hearing, smelling, tasting, and touching. A sense datum is a thing which is experienced when one or more of the sense organs is stimulated, i.e., experiences a stimulus. Sense perception is an immediate or direct comprehension, or knowledge through one or more of the five senses. Consequently mental processes are in operation in sensing and perceiving. Thus, O is sensed and perceived through the functioning of mental processes.
Some brains believe there is a sixth sense. This sixth sense is guessed to go beyond normal sense experience to the supernormal or to a transcendence of the normal. This sixth sense is called different things. Extrasensory perception (ESP) claims that perception can be above or outside of the five senses. ESP, some believers say, includes a special intuition (direct awareness of knowledge without conscious attention or studying), clairvoyance (insight into hidden meanings, extra-normal knowledge, etc.), and mental telepathy (communication with other minds through non-normal processes). As we near the beginning of the 21st century there are hundreds of paranormal contradictory beliefs and claims all over the world. Various psychological experiments and professional magicians have shown that these beliefs from the occult are false. They are fictious. The same thing is a fact about astrology, psychics, leviatation, and other mystic practices. Surveys were completed of various American police departments to find out if they had obtained psychics in efforts to solve crime. Many police departments had used psychics, but there was no department which had a crime solved by a psychic.
There are true believers, believing in many kinds of things which cannot be experienced through sense perception or proved or empirically verified by the sciences. Believing that X exists does not make it exist. But this is seldom considered by many true believers. There is smaller print under the ads of television psychics. It says, “For entertainment only.” This is a disclaimer to avoid law suits when people are damaged because they followed psychics suggestions or advice. The disclaimer really says, “None of this is true, it is only for entertainment (fun); do not take it seriously.” Yet, many true believers make fantastic claims about psychics’ powers.
All of these foregoing beliefs are impediments to the normal functioning of the mental processes. There are many others. For example, a person with low intelligence ability, low IQ, who excells at one thing, e.g., “a human calculator,” able to add large numbers correctly, and immediately, is impeded in the pursuit of knowledge. A “frozen” mental set is the tendencjy to use the same method or habit in attempts to solve new problems when innovations are needed. People who are rigid, with the inability to cope with or constructively use change or changes, are impeded in their mental processes.
When a person does not realize the importance of education, that is an impediment -- a severe impediment. A lazy mind is an impediment and a severe limitation. Some lifestyles, religious beliefs, political beliefs, negative self-consciousness, “stage fright,” fear of embarrassment, and labels such as conservative and liberal are other impediments.
Some traditions, fears (phobias), a lack of self-confidence, the dread of making mistakes, afraid to take risks, and many other things are impediments to mental processes and to human progress.
There are times when medical services, or counseling, or both are required before an impeded person can function mentally the way that he/she should. At times self-direction is enough to overcome impediments. Earning more education is one way to succeed in overcoming some impediments. A person needs to try! Many people pattern-out their lives so that sooner or later they self-destruct. Their human purpose vanishes. People need to use their mistakes and errors as steps to something better. Learn from experiences. They must rise above their self-limiting impediments if they ever intend to accomplish very much.
Professor Win Wenger has dedicated much of his life to helping people practice self-help in education and in improving their mental processes. Dr. Wenger is called an “Ideasmith” and he is that alright. One of his goals is motivating and helping people to control their own lives. Many people need both of these things if they are to succeed at anything. The following two paragraphs indicate Dr. Wenger’s educational endeavors:
Above all today Wenger is an awareness-builder. He enables people
to build their own awareness, in such directions as they may seek ----
into astonishing degrees of clarity, resolution, and range. Most peo-
ple find such abrupt increase in perception to be rewarding. Many of
Wenger’s presentations now feature working demonstrations of exer-
cises wherein audiences create this effect for themselves.
This general self-creating awareness effect is featured in many of Wen-
ger’s otherwise-diverse specific demonstrations of speed-learning, so-
lution-finding, invention-creating, methods of self-discovery and self-
transformation, futures studies and non-linear prediction techniques,
experience of methods for rapidly building one’s own intelligence, and
of various discoveries in the health area. Although Wenger is describ-
ed as a dynamic and exciting lecturer, he feels it more dynamic still to
give people the live experience of actually creating their own percep-
tions and abilities for themselves -- and so is most responsive to invita-
tions for this more dynamic form of experience-presentation.6
A person can improve mental processes although help is required to accomplish this task. It is necessary to remove impediments and to improve mental processes because the Fourth Law is real.
NOTE: A list of several of Dr. Win Wenger’s writings are near the back of his book, “Beyond Teaching and Learning.”
In one situation my efforts to offer many more people the opportunities
to further their educations were impeded by American Indian tribal politics.
The governor of an American Indian tribe assigned the job to me of researching
federal policies about establishing an American Indian college in Oklahoma.
The assignment was carried out. I did writing, publicity, and so forth.
But the governor lost his elected office, and much tribal litigation followed.
The new tribal officials were not interested in an Indian college. If that
college could have been established, or if it could yet be established,
it would increase the knowledge and improve the mental processes of many
people, including non-Indians who would be admitted.
V. FIFTH LAW
HUMAN INTELLIGENCE IS A VARIABLE
“Variable” denotes change. When it is stated that “p is a variable,” then it is meant that p changes, varies, is alterable, and is not immutable. Psychology’s Fifth Law is factual when it states that a person’s intelligence is a variable.
As a person learns through experience, training, and education programs, that person’s knowledge increases. A person learns things throughout life, and the human developmental process is a life-long learning experience unless a person is retarded or mentally insufficient to the point of not being able to learn. Although a person cannot retain all of the knowledge gained, that does not prevent one from learning new things. A person so motivated can literally make the life process an educational process -- lifelong learning! Some philosophers call this the way of wisdom. It is the way of intellectualism.
“Aptitude” is based on “apt” which suggests “suited.” Aptitude is actually the acquired ability to perform tasks. Some aptitude is “natural” ability, i.e., that which a person “has” or partly inherits from a parent, relative, or caregiver. It is also acquired to some extent within an environment. Aptitude tests are intended to find what a person is best suited to do. College entrance tests, e.g., the ACT test is designed to measure the educational progress or achievement of students. The SAT also measures educational achievement. In other words the ACT and SAT determine something about what a student learned. The use of these tests are not without controversy.
IQ, intelligence quotient, is an often discussed subject which attracts much interest. IQ, among other things, is a numerical score which a person makes on an intelligeance test. It was once thought by many people in the behavioral science professions that IQ was concrete and static, a non-variable. It was found later that IQ could become lower, and in some cases, it could become higher. A person’s interests could be part of lowering the score or causing the score to go higher. Children have “intelligence models,” either low, average, or high. Environment, including interests and models, influence the decrease or increase in intelligence.
Average IQ in the United States is around 100 in 1998. IQ scores will often vary from 90 to 115. This average can be improved or impeded. IQ scores have been controversial because of possible racial or ethnic bias or discrimination. In countries controlled mainly by White governments, the tendency was/is to produce IQ tests which are pragmatic. IQ tests had to be revised and updated. Among the controversies are some “hard core” beliefs and ideas. No longer is it feasible to use IQ tests which do not equally test the “test taker’s” intelligence. The fact is that most IQ tests are by far produced by middle class, and upper middle class White people. Objectivity, not subjectivity, is needed more in the present. Subjectivity tests are slanted IQ tests, and cause different people to become aware of the bias. A culture fair IQ test, among others, were developed in efforts to eliminate slant and bias in testing.
While there are different tests for measuring intelligence, the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale is the most frequently used. It is mainly the revised version, WAIS-R in current use.
When I was a teenager, a young man in his early twenties wanted to join the United States Army, but had an IQ of about 80, and his mother thought that he could not get in. So she wrote to a Congressman and said, “Send a book so my son can increase his IQ.” Some people were joking and laughing about that because many believed that the IQ was static, and could not be improved. Although the young man received no book the Congressman got him into the army, and years later he retired from the military. He had a good military record.
A person should want to “get smarter,” and should be willing to really try. Moreover a person ought to be willing to learn, and willing to put out the effort to accomplish it. Study and learn, STUDY AND LEARN, STUDY AND LEARN. Perseverance is a key! The brain power is there. Use it or lose it! Intelligence itself is neither innate nor absent. A brain should be used and intelligence will develop. The more the brain is used the better it is. It is a terrible thing to waste a brain!
Since IQ is variable, and intelligence is variable, it follows that an IQ can be, and ought to be, increased. Effort is one main thing which makes the increase happen. Effort based on learning how. Effort or the lack of it explains partly why potentially “A” students make “C,” and potentially “C” students make “A.” You must have discipline! Motivation is mandatory.
Professor Win Wenger can really help at this point. Another one of his excellent books is “How to Increase Your Intelligence.”7 Dr. Wenger, in Chapter One, “Some Questions at the Start,”8 writes:
ARE you stuck with the brain you were born with, or can you give
yourself a better one?
By using just a few of the techniques described in this book, adults
have raised their intelligence (“intelligence” as measured by IQ
tests, and probably in a broader sense as well) by more than forty
points. Some of these, according to letters to the author, have used
some methods described in earlier editions of this book. Persons of
average intelligence have managed, after using some of the methods
described in this book, to join Mensa.
(Mensa is explained by Wenger to be an international organization for intellectually gifted people). It is probable that most people want to improve their intelligjence.
Professor Wenger continues, “THE only apparent limit on how successfully you can raise your own intelligence, given presently available techniques, if you will do so.”9 The professor points out further that the brain can be stronger, and that, “The brain and its workings are physical -- as physical as your heart or liver, and can be changed by physical processes.”10 He tells readers that improving the circulatory system to the brain can improve it. It receives more oxygen. Physical exercise is important as well as eating enough wholesome food. Vitamin E helps circulation in the brain, but “The brains entire functioning is based largely on the B-vitamins.”11 Various other required vitamins are necessary for health which includes the body, and the brain which is part of it. Since reading the writings of Dr. Linus Pauling, chemist, years ago, I have been convinced in the importance of vitamin C for better health and resistance.
Another factor in improving a human brain, according to Dr. Wenger, is to avoid alcohol, and other drugs. He would also include nicotine and marijuana. All of these things affect the brain and can damage it. He appeals to readers not to scramble their brains with the use of drugs. I agree with Dr. Wenger, and would add paint sniffing or the sniffing of any substance which has a so-called “kick” to it. I live in an Oklahoma area where paint sniffing and glue sniffing are problems. They are problems among many American Indians, and other ethnic and racial groups. The human brain is too valuable and too important to be damaged or ruined. Paint sniffing does irreversible damage, and is especially dangerous.
That intelligence is a variable is attested to by Dr. Wenger. He pens:
Anyone who still thinks of intelligence as basically a fixed, hereditary
quantity has some interesting problems to face. For example, com-
pared to I.Q. scores taken under usual test conditions, what would be
the result of an I.Q. test taken by the same person immediately after a
thunderingly successful Thanksgiving dinner? Or after he put his
brain temporarily into “high gear” with extra dosages of choline and
vitamin B-12? Which is the “true” I.Q.?
If the quantity which traditional psychologists call intelligence does
in fact show up in I.Q. scores, should we then assume that it does not
show up in that post-turkey score? If we must say that such easily
brought about differences in the test subject’s physical condition ac-
count for those differences in his I.Q. test scores, should we then turn
around and say that other, also easily brought about differences in
the physical conditions of various individuals have nothing to do with
the measured I.Q. differences between those individuals?12
Dr. Wenger proceeds to reject mystic claims to special intelligence and rightly points out there are no methods to measure so-called results from such claims.13
It is an attestable fact that a person can take I.Q. tests at different times and emerge with different I.Q. scores. The same thing often happens when students retake ACT and SAT tests. All of these facts substantiate the Fifth Law of psychology that human intelligence is a variable.
Professor Wenger goes on to say “there can remain very little doubt
that the popular notion that intelligence is a fixed, hereditary, unchangeable
quantity is in serious error. It is evident that intelligence can in fact
be raised or lowered, has in fact been raised and lowered by various factors
in your environment, and, as we shall see in the next chapger, should be
VI. SIXTH LAW
HUMAN BRAIN CAN DEVELOP CREATIVITY
“Creativity” includes original thoughts, ideas, and new or novel inventions. “To create” implies production. A poem, painting, sculpture, novel, scientific writing, Biblical or theological writings, new inventions, medical discoveries, et cetera, are all productions. They are products of human brains. The brain is almost unlimited in creativity. It becomes more creative by creating. Thoughts and ideas can increase by continuously producing them. A brain can become accustomed to producing ideas so there appears to be no limit to the ideas. One idea can give birth to another, and another, and to others. An idea can be thought inspiring.
When a brain is creatively used, and used, and used, and on and on, it can be used more. Its power increases, and it becomes a more habitual thought and idea production organ. But if it is seldom used it will stagnate. Ignorance can increase. Mental dullness can increase to the point that a person can do or accomplish very little. It is as the old adage says, USE IT OR LOSE IT. Many people lost it!
When I was in Junior High School, now called Middle School, I had an English teacher whose name was Ms. Rude. She would say from time to time that, “An idle mind is the Devil’s workshop.” Her idea impressed me. Her teacher sister was Mrs. Cross, and she had similar ideas. When a person, a brain, only “takes it easy,” relaxes, “goofs off,” “cools its heels” most of the time, or tries to do as little as possible, then it, the brain, becomes less useful. However, it needs activity and will think, be bored, or plan to some limited extent. Some children or teenagers develop into juvenile delinquents, become dangerous, join violent gangs, et cetera, because of their lack of interests and goals. An idle mind (brain) is hardly, totally, idle.
Dr. Win Wenger has stated that the brain is a physical organ, and it is. There is no spook or non-material substance as the thinker inside the human skull. He said, “Your brain is the most active part of your body, other than your heart. One third of all the oxygen used in your whole body, and therefore one third of all the food energy burned up by your whole physical body, is used up by your brain. In turn, your brain monitors and controls every process going on in every part of your body.”15 Dr. Wenger explains various methods for improving the health of the brain, and of improving intelligence. His book, “How to Improve Your Intelligence,” and other writings should be read. The reader should also explore Win Wenger’s ideas about creativity.
Various theories were advocated about creative people. The Bible indicates that God gives talents to many people. Socrates and Descartes thought or at least implied that they had a demon who helped them, but it is doubted that they were serious. Whatever their causes of creativity they got in enough trouble with institutionalized religions.
The Bridge Mountain Community near San Jose, California, was studied by this author many years ago. Its “far out” claims included the notion that free spirits could be more creative. But some critics did not think that urinating anywhere, or defecating in one’s clothes, or doing whatever notion occurred to a person, would enhance the possibility of creativity.
So-called “scream therapy” was another theory which received many rejections. The theory claims that monkeys scream and jump around, and that animal tensions are relieved. Since, the theory claims, people evolved through apes and monkeys, it is supposed to follow that humans should scream, and use prolonged screaming sessions to release tensions, and be helped in other ways. It is said that children yell and scream and that adults should do the same thing. These claims have not been accepted in general psychology.
Freedom of inquiry is essential for free creativity. Tyrant governments or freedom fearing politicians are barriers to human creativity. Many religious notions and beliefs are also barriers to this creativity. The human mind (brain) needs freedom to develop, not to be brainwashed, and not to be limited. Many people with false religious and/or political beliefs should fear the freedom of inquiry, and free scholarship, and the free, and open exchange of ideas. People who are afraid to take the risk of freedom need to fear when God turns loose real thinkers in the world. All certainties then become subjects for questioning. Such questioning can open the avenues of creativity.
Brainstorming is a process or activity in thinking up new ideas or possibilities. In brainstorming various words can be considered. New ideas can be thought or developed. Sometimes such ideas are sudden insights. New avenues of thoughts can at times open up. This book is the result of brainstorming. Mr. Mark Joyner, with the Aesop Marketing Corporation, a world-wide publisher, set up a telephone conversation with Dr. Win Wenger, and myself. We discussed various ideas thrown at us by Mr. Joyner. I asked Dr. Wenger about his theory of the First Law of psychology mentioned earlier in my book. We discussed it. Mr. Joyner said, “Why don’t you research the idea?” We went from there! The Laws of Psychology is the brain child of the three of us.
Curiosity is one ingredient of creativity. Babies and children start with curiosity. Multitudes of children have much curiosity. It should be allowed the freedom to develop. I told classes from time to time over the years that many old school teacher traditionalists, dull, job only teachers, kill the curiosity of many, if not most, children. Many professors are in the same boat as dull, non-inspiring, curiosity killing teachers. Some teachers and professors are such traditionalists, or so lazy, that they could turn off almost anyone from really being motivated to learn. Men and women these things ought not to be!
Dr. Win Wenger hit the curiosity nail on the head! He says:
Because all of us basically want to perceive, to know, to be aware,
to experience. We want to live, not just be pleased. And living is
experiencing. The more completely we experience, the fuller our
lives become. Society may have pushed most of us out of our
curiosity, our drive to know things, our unashamed appreciation
of beauty, our readiness to come up with ideas and new ways --
but in almost none of us has society totally extinguished that
basic wish and need found in all of us, the drive to be sentient.16
Sentient is the powers we have for sensation, sense perception, and feelings. Human beings are mentally sentient persons. Personhood itself is sentient. Society and its conformed teachers have not succeeded fully in ending the curiosity and creativity in all of us.
Those of us who are parents and grandparents ought to be concerned about our children and grandchildren obtaining the best education and opportunities for creativity that they can get. Kids’ curiosity ought to be encouraged, and this ought implies can. Professor Wenger, in his intelligence book, includes “appendix 2: How To Enhance The Intelligence Of Your Children.”17 Again we ought to want to accomplish this goal. My wife and I tried to provide our two daughters, and son with educational toys, and the freedom to develop their curiosity. They fortunately had some good teachers who helped. These efforts worked; they were pragmatic. Now our children have children, and they are doing a better job of providing educational toys, games, and creative environment than we did.
My own creative awakening, and process of creative development, were beneficial experiences. I learned that I “can do,” and “can’t do” is almost foreign to my mind. When I was a youngster in grade school I learned both to hate and fear math, as do many people. Many peers and their pressure can be detrimental to creative development. I did not know what I was missing in my negative attitude about math. In college, I was motivated, and I studied hard. I learned that I could do math. Later I was surprised to find myself teaching college mathematics, college algebra, and college logic courses. I fortunately awakened out of my intellectual slumber, and used a free course of free and unbridled inquiry and scholarship.
Then came the teaching of college courses in three state prison systems. One of my educational experiences was teaching for Oklahoma’s two oldest colleges: Bacone College in Muskogee, Oklahoma, and St. Gregory’s (Catholic) College in Shawnee, Oklahoma. Becone College is a Northern Baptist (American Baptist) college. It was first started as a missions college to the Indians (Native Americans). It contracted with the state of Oklahoma to provide prison courses in state correctional facilities. I was contracted to teach college courses in three state prison facilities. Many of the prisoners in the courses were incarcerated for very minor crimes, according to their newspaper accounts. Some were major violent crime offenders. There were some very good results in educating some of these inmates. Some graduated with associate degrees, and after parole, some went on to other colleges or universities. Then President Clinton’s Anti-crime Bill ended Pell Grants to prisoners, and ended college courses for prisoners. The bill had bipartisan support by both Republicans and Democrats. America’s prison system went more to punishment and less to rehabilitation and reform. The dedicated punishment system already failed because up to 85 percent of released prisoners returned to prisons. The system of more punishment will produce more criminals and more crime victims.
While teaching in prisons my awareness was awakened to the appalling ignorance of many criminals. Some prisoners served as volunteer tutors in teaching many other prisoners how to read and write. Creativity and human purpose seemed dead for many prisoners. However, some other prisoners were intelligent, some became highly motivated to get an education, and some were already college graduates, and in one case, a seminary graduate. Some people can do stupid things.
Many prisoners needed to be creative. There were some good musicians, painters, and poets in prisons. Their creativity needed to be guided and directed in the right directions. The failure to fulfill creative needs can in some lives cause substitutes which can be crimes, drug addictions, and other perversions. Poor conservatives, liberals, and about 40 other labels are illogical and fail to provide logical answers to problems. Effective education, logic, and creativity are needed, not illogical labels.
One of my degrees is the B.A., summa cum laude, in American Indian Studies. My state university teaching experience included Indian Studies for three years, including summer courses. I am one-fourth degree of Indian blood, Mohah Choctaw. Over the years my awareness of the creative genius of many Native American Indians was inspired. Many Indian painters and sculptors never took a course in art or sculpturing, yet were fantastic. I saw and met many great artists and had the son of one of the world famous Kiowa Five Artists in some of my courses. Indian artists are inclined to develop their talents. It seems to be a cultural trait. Yet many other Indians and non-Indians pursue degrees in the fine arts in colleges or universities. Many results are both gratifying and very productive. Perhaps they unknowingly followed the Sixth Law of psychology.
So unfetter and unchain the human brain for creativity or for more creativity!
VII. SEVENTH LAW
BRAINS THINK ABOUT DEATH AND DYING
Brains as thinkers include thoughts about death, dying, and what, if anything, happens after death. Some psychologists think that this type of thinking is a normal process of the human condition. Since most people probably think about death and dying it can be called a law in psychology. Today people are bombarded with television and news media death reports, and world news reports about many, many different events of death everywhere.
Death and dying for most people is not pleasant thinking. People know they will die sometime, but death usually carries the desire for postponement. Death is not a welcome guest for most human beings. It messes up a life, and it messes up families, homes, and environments. Early deaths cut short a lot of living, much of it which could be purposeful living.
One way to prepare for death is to live a life as meaningful, as purposeful, and as creative as possible. A meaningful life could make death less dreadful.
Fear and dread of death makes it worse. One thing to do is for a person to study, work hard, be in as good a physical and mental condition as possible, and accomplish as many goals as possible. This is a key thing to do.
Suicide is the death wish of many unfortunate human beings. Some very sick people want to die and thereby end their suffering. But I would in no way kill or help kill a patient or client. How many people would you kill before you became insensitive to killing your fellow humans? Kill people? No way!
Some religions and cults teach that their members or followers ought to commit suicide. Their screwball doctrines, and there are many such doctrines, glorify self-murder called suicide. There were many mass religious suicides in history, and an increase in recent times. News media made the world aware of religious suicides. The United States already had a high suicide rate and statistics, especially among young people. With the entry of more Eastern religions, and the increase of religious cults, American suicide rates increased, and will probably continue to increase. But suicide is wrong and an evil.
LIFE IS WORTH LIVING
Euthanasia is the deliberate killing of a person or people. It is supposed to be a painless death. But it could be mentally painful for such a practice to exist. Euthanasia is also called “mercy killing.” It is said to be merciful to kill suffering, terminally ill people. But such ill people do at times survive, improve, and get well. Some live out their lives. It is worth the efforts AND MONEY to save one life! People certainly should not believe in a medical establishment which deliberately kills people. No, a thousand times, no!
If a person has a family, then that family should stand with him or her in sickness and in death. But a family member should not kill, or have killed, another family member. If a person cannot trust his or her family,. then who can be trusted? People need family support. Furthermore those people who claim to believe in God should give God a chance, and leave death and dying to the will of God.
Rev. Harry Emerson Fosdick helped start the Euthanasia Society of New York. He believed in mercy killing. Of course the majority of Americans believe in all kinds of killing. So do people all over the world. Mercy killing is another in a long line of killings. When Rev. Fosdick was very old and feeble some theologians went to him and asked, “Are you ready to be put to sleep now?” The Reverend said, “Not now.” That sums it up. It is sometimes said that no one wants to live to be 100 -- until he/she is 99.
Recently a lady in her late sixties was terminally ill in a nearby city. She was living on life support machines. Her grown children in her hospital room were discussing whether they should tell the physician to pull the plug. The lady overheard it. She said, “No, not now. I feel better.” She was soon dead. Some people in the medical field and in religions would argue that it is cruel to prolong a suffering person’s life. But once such killings start, and they have started, how far do they go? Is it more cruel to kill a person? What is cruelty anyway?
My mother on her own choice entered a nursing home (elderly care center) when she was 89 years old. We celebrated her 90th birthday on June 12, 1998. Old age is in the process of ending her life. I am an only child. And I would never tell anyone to end her life. Neither could I do it.
Medical science is making great progress in treating illnesses, including some diseases which cause patients to be terminal. Some terminal patients today will have their illnesses cured in the future. The early killing of those patients will not allow them to have a chance for new medical discoveries to work. Patience is needed for patients.
Some people, including some church people, claim that death is their friend. Since the church denominations have gone so crazy there is no telling what some of their members or followers do or say. The Apostle Paul wrote, “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” - 1 Corinthians 15:26. Biblical writers did not call death a friend. On the contrary it is called an enemy.
Jesus Christ proclaimed, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” - John 10:10. The statements of Christ and the Apostle Paul are in opposition to fatalism.
Is death the end? Some psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychoanalysts believe in a continuing consciousness after death. Many people who profess to be Christians believe in life after death. But statistics show that many people who profess to be Christians do not believe in everlasting life. It is difficult to know today, what many so-called Christians believe. Perhaps it is actually left to the individual to decide about an answer to the question.
Euthenics is the science which endeavors to control elements in the environment in order to improve the health of people. There are efforts to control physical and mental factors in trying to accomplish these goals. While euthenics can be put to wrong uses, as eugenics has been at times, environment control methods could help people to be more healthy in brain and body. Physical and mental health are important for people to be more productive, and it helps people think in more pro-life terms. People need to say “Yea” to life, not “Nea.”
People are not 100 percent perfect either physically or mentally. Many people have physical and/or mental, or emotional problems to some extent. Yet many of these people are successes in their endeavors in life. One of the greatest examples of overcoming physical adversity is the brilliant scientist, Stephen Hawking. His success and contributions to humankind are notable and fantastic. He is professor of theoretical physics at Cambridge University.
Whatever a person’s outlook on death and dying, paranoia will only complicate things and life itself. Neither is it reasonable to accept any type of fatalism. A person should use logic and self-direction in living, and live as completely as possible without a dread of death. The dread and fear of death can become so profound that a person develops a death phobia. When this happens that person is in need of counseling or psychiatric therapy. Freud dealt with what he called the death instinct. This problem includes impulses or actions aimed at self-destruction. Self-destructive behavior whether the person is aware of it or not can lead to that person’s death. Such a person needs help from the mental health professions.
People should not retreat from life. Retreat can be defeat. A person needs experiences, needs interactions with other persons, needs the challenges of life, and needs to learn how to overcome difficulties, adversities, and barriers. Dr. Win Wenger writes:
Sensory-deprivation experiments tell us that man and all higher
mammals desperately need some experiencing at all times -- without
it, they will start hallucinating experiences. Then they will go insane.
Then, sometime later, they will die.18
Experiences, both positive and negative, contribute to human growth and development. Experiencing human beings ought to learn to be life oriented, not death oriented.
Psychology’s Seventh Law, “Brains Think About Death and Dying” apparently
involves all people.
VIII. EIGHTH LAW
HUMANS CAN BE PURPOSEFUL BEINGS
“Purposeful” pertains to idea and ideal. To have a purpose is to have a meaningful goal. It also includes plan and design. A purpose is also an intention. Action is involved in all of this. Self-direction can help move a person towards a desired goal. Both the self and the goal interplay with each other. Purposefulness is an important human value.
All people should be allowed to be purposeful, and to live a better life. Unfortunately poverty, food shortages, sicknesses and diseases, conflicts, wars, et cetera, prevent millions of people from really being purposeful human beings. The potential is there for a person to be purposeful, but in addition to the foregoing problems there are many religious wars, and political wars which cause terrible sufferings, heartbreak, and deaths. Much of the world’s people are prevented from living meaningful and purposeful existences.
Many psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychoanalysts recognized the importance and challenge of people being purposeful human beings.
Abraham H. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is well-known in general psychology. The needs are often diagrammed in the form of a pyramid. The bottom foundation consists of physical or bodily needs. Basically these are food and water. But millions of the world’s people do not have enough food. Going up the pyramid the second stratum is safety and security. Both of these needs are absent in much of the world as we approach the 21srt century. Both needs are becoming more scarce in the United States. Next, there are the needs to be loved and to belong especially to a family. But it is more difficult for these needs to be satisfied. Violent gays, and hate religions sometime appear to provide these needs. In this situation appearance is not reality. On up high on the pyramid there is the need for self-esteem. It is terrible for a person to feel put down or worthless. There are times when cults appear to provide needs herein by trying to convert people they meet. Again the appearance is not the reality. People need to achieve and to be successful. They need to see some progress. It hurts to go two steps forward, and three steps back. But this often happens. It is time for my PP Principle. This Principle is PERSISTENCE and PERSEVERANCE. The PP is much better and more effective than not wanting to succeed, and a thousand times better than giving up. Quitters lose!
Maslow’s pyramid has a small tip on the top. The need for self-actualization is at the top. A normal person ought to want to accomplish as much as possible in this life. No one should be content to waste his/her life. Each person is a human being of great value. A person ought to be motivated and self-directed enough to develop his/her full potential. The United States Army has a recruiting slogan which says, BE ALL YOU CAN BE IN THE ARMY. The United States Air Force (1998) has a recruiting slogan which says, AIM HIGH. These recruiting slogans are good for lives. Be all you can be, and aim high. Accomplish all that you can accomplish. Do not settle for the average and the common, but make as much as you can of yourself.
These things are good to hear. But to re-emphasize, all people need their four basic necessities of economics met, i.e., provided. They need food, clothing, shelter, and medical services. Jobs and adequate income are needed. People who can work ought to be employed. They should not be underemployed (underpaid), but deserve to work and earn enough salaries to progress to something better. Individual desire and determination are very important.
Recreation, fun, enjoyment, and education are needed. More educational programs, and easier access to college or worthwhile vocational technical schools should be offered soon. Politicians ought to see and understand these human needs. Politicians should stop wasting human lives.
Some people add the Spiritual need to self-actualization. This is reasonable. Moreover many people feel temporary, and temporal. They desire to feel like they are working and producing for time and for eternity. Many people do not want death to end everything for them. Many are convinced that they need God.
A self-actualized person is sometimes said to be a real person, or a “more real” person. Reality is important in this concept. Many people are tired of phony lives.
Win Wenger, writing like a terminologist, gives us some interesting ideas about “normal” and “average.” “If you want ‘normal’ intelligence, then you certainly don’t want ‘average’ intelligence. ‘Normal’ is not ‘average.’ ‘Normal’ means whole, intact, healthy; ‘average’ reflects all the ills and sick conditions and scars that most people bear.”19 Many years ago when I was in the pastoral ministry I preached a sermon titled. “The Average and the Uncommon.” Part of my efforts were to motivate hearers to rise above the limitations of thinking “common.” People who think in “common people,” or “common man” terms impose many self-limitations on themselves. One thing, among others, which bothered me in the ministry was people who believed in the Almight God would convince themselves that they were average and could not accomplish very much. “Believe in God and fail.” It does not makea good sense.
People who fancy themselves to be common people tend to think in terms of a 1-D (one dimensional) world. They at times make themselves miserable with no ambition to learn and grow in knowledge. Many of these people are contented pigs not a discontented Socrates. They need to change their patterned out lifestyle to the direction of purposeful human existence.
Learning and education offen bring more responsibilities and challenges. Win Wenger says, “Being highly intelligent does carry with it some problems. It is not entirely a bed of roses; there are thorns.”20 Solomon, in the Old Testament, the founder of the philosophy of existentialism, (my discovery), in his book, “Ecclesiastes,” wrote, “For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.” - Ecclesiastes 1:18. Howbeit, we ought to stand up to the challenge and risk of higher education. It is well worth it.
There are many barriers in the way of human purposefulness. Many are wrong ways of believing, thinking, and acting. There are many religious, political, and cultural hangups and taboos which prevent or destroy human purpose. There are many weird and superstituous religious contraptions and prescriptions which ruin human purpose, and human lives. A plaque has been hanging on my library wall for many, many years. It states: GOD IS A BRAVE MAN’S HOPE AND A COWARD’S EXCUSE -- Plutarch.
Finally, take your foot off the brakes. Release your brain power for more purposeful living. Self-actualization, being real, the way not of the many, but the way of the chosen who are not frozen.
Psychology’s Eighth Law is itself real.
IX. NINTH LAW
HUMAN EMOTIONS CAN BE VICTIMS OF CIRCUMSTANCES
This Law should be self-evident.
“Victims” and “circumstances.” Both are “givens.” They are “there.” But this Law is often overlooked.
“Circumstances” are situations, events, happenings, affairs, incidents, occasions, accidents, wrong decisions; financial circumstances, war or revoluntionary circumstances,, religious and/or political circumstances, and so forth. There are many things in the world which can victimize, damage or destroy people. Yet each person should keep on trying. “Keep on truckin.”
When Darrell Royal, from near my hometown, went to Oklahoma University he won All American honors at quarterback. Later he coached Texas University for many years and became a thorn in the foot of Oklahoma University, although OU beat him and TU at times. Once while he was giving a speech someone asked, “Coach Royal, what does football teach a person?” The question probably was a little skeptical. Coach Royal immediately replied, “Football, if it teaches anything, teaches a person to get up after being knocked down.” That is much like life. A person gets hit, knocked down, at times hit with “cheap shots,” is rattled and jarred at times, experiences the “bruises” of living; hurts at times, gets tired, injured, and has the “game” go against him (or her). Yet if the person continues living, is alive, then there are many good reasons to train more, get in better shape, and keep on trying to score, and to win the game of life. Circumstances which are barriers must be overcome.
Human emotion, singular, itself is the capacity or ability to produce and express emotions (plural). The mental health professions offer various definitions of emotion but usually talk about it in terms of emotions. Various philosophers also offered definitions (plural) of emotion. All normal humans can express emotions. But some non-normal people are emotionally dead, beyond the capacity to produce or express emotions. Such people are emotionally dead. The other extreme is the overly emotional people. Such persons, at least at times, cannot control some emotion or some emotions.
Love and hate are said by some psychologists to be the strongest emotions. They certainly are strong, and they are extremes. Other emotions are passion, high-strung actions, fear, anger, frustration, hot-temper, warmness, hysterics, depressed feeling, patriotic feelings, feelings of resentment, sentimental feelings, urges, hurt feelings, doubt, et cetera. There are many emotions and possibilities for many problems.
Human emotions are not immune from positive and negative influences of circumstances. Some circumstances become dilemmas or predicaments which become difficult with which to cope and deal. Some human souls live in such stressful circumstances that they become psychologically ill. Pathologies occur. Life itself can be lost. Many people need help in dire circumstances, but many of these people do not or cannot get help. They pass away from existence with hardly any notice, if any, that they ever lived. Indeed such passing away is the lot of almost all human beings. Most are never remembered again. How many Romans do you know?
Introspection should be practiced by a person. This means that a person ought to be concerned about self-observation. Questions of concern can be: Who and what am I? Am I really real? Do I exist purposefully? Am I constructively coping with life and its problems? Am I retreating from reality? Can I continue to exist? Introspective psychology attempts to persuade a person with problems, clients, to “look inside themselves,” and find out what they really are. But introspection often is not easy. Can a person be honest with self? There are many other questions and answers.
If only a person could be a “recessive I,” or “recessive ego,” as contemplated
by the German philosopher Fichte. If “I” could recede or withdraw from
self, environment, and circumstances, and then see the whole picture, so
would know much more about making the right decisions, and about the correct solutions of the problems. But one can do this only in the brain, perhaps only in the imagination. Perhaps only God can see the whole picture.
Tough circumstances can be very difficult to overcome. A person should try to think through, and work through them. If a person’s emotions become victims of circumstances then that person becomes a victim. A victim might struggle on and on, but might eventually weaken to the “hardness of life,” and be severely damaged, suffer a mental breakdown, commit suicide, or die because of something else. Life is a major task for millions of people around the globe. For many people there is no earthly escape from tragedy. For others constructive and effective coping with tough and stressful circumstances are keys to psychological survival, and also to physical survival.
Love might be the most tricky word in the human language. Its meanings were argued and re-argued in the annals of human thought. While it can include affection, and attachment, and warmth, fondness, and companionship, it can also suggest other ideas. For a better understanding of love, it is appropriate to consider the different types of love. For example there is love between a man and woman. There is love within a human family, i.e., family love. There is sexual love, or erotic love. The Greek word “Agape,” love, is a Biblical and theological word which suggests Christian love, or love regardless of the person or persons to be loved. There are also other kinds of love.
Love is great, and the different types of love can be very great experiences. On the other hand love can fall, and can become a fleeting ideal. It can at times appear to be the neverland utopia which never can be a reality. Failed or ended love can cause some persons to become victims of circumstances, along with all of the heartaches, miseries, and ruin. Persons struggling in these circumstances, as victims, need help, not criticism, and they do not need to be condemned. Professional help is at times required before victimized persons can heal, and really live again.
Hate is another complicated term. Hate means, in some situations, severe or extreme dislike; abhorance, and despise. One person once said, “I hate so hard that I hurt!” This can happen. Hate can hurt a person. It can cause misery, illness, and death. Hate often hurts the hater worse than the person being hated. The German philosopher Hegel said that “Each system based on hate carries within itself its own seeds of destruction.” There is much truth in this concept. On the other hand, Karl Marx, who hated Hegel, built his system of Communism or class hatred, i.e., hatred among economic classes of people. Marx taught hatred, violence, murder, and class revolution. Marx hated so hard that he became mentally ill. His hatred and other factors caused him to become Marx the madman! Behold thy hero! A hate-filled insane man! Behold his dying system! Hate can indeed be a complicated circumstance.
Contemporary hot problems bespeak the fact that human emotions can and
do become victims of circumstances. The Ninth Law of psychology “talks”
loud. It is further verified in the homosexualization of the United States,
and a big part of the rest of the world. Moreover it is verified in the
conversion of religions, church denominations, and cults, to the evils
in the world.
X. TENTH LAW
WILL (CHOICE) IS FREE BUT LIMITED AT TIMES
This is not a contradictory statement.
“Will” was controversial down through the histories of theology, philosophy, and psychology, and is a problem in ethics and law. As one of the problems of philosophy it never has been solved. But it should, and can be.
“Will” has allowed some theologies, religions, and church denominations to have field days of proving or disproving this, that, or the other, because of various contradictory notions about it. While many of these groups are losing members and followers the problems are still there. Some newly formed religious groups are also “hung up” on the will.
“Volition” is a term often used to mean “free will.” “Free will” literally means “free choice.” If we say that “President Bill Clinton is a womanizer by his own volition,” then we mean that it was by his own free will or free choice. (He perhaps is not a womanizer). The word “will” means “choice.” It can also mean desire, wish, or some other synonym. Will and choice mean the same thing. While thinking, and choosing (willing) involve the brain and mental processes, this does not mean that the will is some force or some definite place in the brain. Geography of the human brain has no “part” or “spot” which is “The will.” Electrical activity and force occur when a person makes a choice. The mental ability to choose is the mental ability to will. It is the brain that wills or chooses, not the will. When a person says, “I will,” then he/she means, “I choose.”
When theologians talk about “the will of God,” they really mean “the choice of God.” God’s will (choice) is thought by some theologians to be absolute while the will (choice) of a person is relative, and not absolute. God in His knowledge, and in His will (choice) is Almighty. He has no limitations except that He must will (choose) according to His Written Word, the Bible. Some theologians hold these views. There are various passages in the Bible which indicate that “will” and “choice” can be used interchangeably.
“Will” as used by theologians, philosophers, and psychologists is often used ambiguously. Some of these pros equivocate all over the place. The statements they write often sound professional and intellectual until they are logically investigated. Then the fallacies appear. (See my book, “Logic: Catalogue of New Fallacies,” on the internet at http://www.potentools.com/mind/logic/ When using “will” writers and speakers should take care in handling it.
Psychology’s different branches, including psychoanalysis which is not a psychology, are deterministic, i.e., they teach determinism. The one exception to this statement is humanistic psychology, which should not be confused with the lessening philosophy of humanism. Determinism is the doctrine which holds that a person’s actions and will (choice) are determined or settled, decided, and concluded by biological, sociological, geographical, psychological, et cetera, events or forces. The branches of psychology, with the one exception, teach that the will is not free but determined by different determinants. Circumstances, so they say, prevent the will from being free. Since the will is not free it follows that it is bound by circumstances. Some psychologists further contend that the will is not free because it is bound by laws: natural laws, civil and criminal laws, and so forth.
Since it is supposed that the will is not free, and the person (agent)
cannot practice freedom of will (choice), then it is supposed to follow
that people (agents) are not responsible for their actions. Some psychologists
think that punishment is a crime because those who commit crime are not
free agents. That is they do not have free choice in the matter of committing
crimes. With a new sexual revolution going on it is also claimed by some
psychologists and other people, that people (agents), since they cannot
practice free will, have no choice or control over their sexual orientations
and preferences. For example, I coined the term “trisexual” in one of my
writings. (“Counseling Gay Clients to Change: Hard Core Facts”). A trisexual
is a person who has sexual intercourse with
men, women, and some members of the animal kingdom. Since there are more zoophiliacs than there are gays, and since many zoophiliacs do not limit their seducing to animals, et cetera, but include both men, and women, it follows that they are trisexuals. When using deterministic psychology’s criteria for judgment, the conclusion would of necessity be that trisexuals are not responsible for their sexual orientation and practices. This would mean that they are not responsible for raping animals or for any type of inhumane treatment or cruelty to animals or to humans.
Theologians talk about “free moral agents,” meaning that people (agents) are free to make their own choices or not free to make their own choices. Psychology’s determinism is somewhat like deterministic predestination in the theologies of some religions and church denominations. Thomism, the “philosophy,” really a theology, of Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), also called “Saint,” was declared by Pope Leo XIII, and other popes to be the official teaching of the Roman Catholic Church. Thomism claims that God through His divine providence predestinated some souls to be damned and some souls to be blessed. Augustine (354-430 A.D.), also called “Saint,” did not die as a Catholic. He was excommunicated, and buried in dishonor. After his writings became famous, his grave was dug up, and buried in honor, and then sainted. He was a predestinarian. Martin Luther (1483-1546), the founder of the Protestant Reformation argued for the bondage of the will. John Calvin (1509-1564),was extreme about predestination. Calvin believed that before God created the world He predestinated some people to eternal security in Heaven, and other people to eternal damnation in hell. Some Calvinists talk about double predestination: i.e., predestination of both body and soul. One claim is that God foreknew who would be the elect, i.e., people who were saved, and who would be lost forever; so He predestinated each soul like a train on a one-way railroad track. Some religionists claim that what happens to a person only happens, and there was nothing which anyone could do about it. This is called “fatalism.”
Billy Graham, the now-elderly, world-renowed evangelist, is a Calvinist. He said that the people who come forward in his crusades, as the choir sings, “Just As I Am,” come forward because they are in the elect, and are predestinated to do it. People who refuse to come forward, and who never make a decision for Christ, are the predestinated damned. Since everything is already settled for everyone, Rev. Graham was asked, “Then why preach the Gospel?” Mr. Graham replied, “Because Christ told us to.”
Actually Moses and the Old Testament prophets taught that people have free will (choice) and are responsible for their words and actions. Christ and the Apostles taught the same doctrine in the New Testament. Jacobus Arminius (1560-1609), and John Wesley (1703-1791) would more clearly formulate the teaching of free will (free choice), and teach that people are responsible for their conduct, actions, and behavior.
Criminal and civil law hold people responsible for their behavior, and they include punishments for crimes. However, much of this system is changing, and could eventually change completely.
Fatalism is the doctrine that whatever happens must happen, and that if something is going to happen it will happen. Example: If an airplane falls from the sky and crashes into a motel, and all of the people aboard the plane, and in the motel, are killed, except one person, then it is said that it was time for all of those people to die. (It was their time). But it simply was not the time for the one person who lived.
Some military personnel were fatalistic and so were/are some politicians. Many religious people believe in fatalism. The Islamic religion is a fatalistic religion. If fatalism is accepted then it really does limit God, Allah, religions, and human self-direction. Fatalism is not a healthy doctrine, and it paves the way for many failures. It can be a “give up” doctrine.
Now, is the will (choice) free or bound? Or is there some other answer(s) to this question? Are there other questions? Many books down through history have been written on this problem.
Can Benefield will, i.e., choose, to walk three miles today? Yes, he can. Can he choose not to? Yes. Weather conditions, how he feels, or other circumstances, might cause him not to take the walk. So it is evident that Benefield can will (choose) to walk or not to walk, or to postpone it because of some reason. While Benefield has free will (free choice) his free decisions are at times limited or postponed. This is not psychological determinism. It is merely the way that most of us live our lives.
Is Benefield free to will (choose) what kind of work he wants to do? He can choose and try to do it, for the most part, in the United States today (1999). Can he will (choose) to practice the sexual orientation of his choice? Yes. Can he change orientations? Yes. Can he commit a crime or refuse to commit a crime? Yes. Will he be punished if he commits a crime? Yes. Will he be punished if he commits a crime, and is caught? There is very good reason to think that he will be punished.
Does Benefield have to believe in the Bahai religion? No. Must Benefield believe in the Santaria religion of the Penitentes religion? No. Must be believe in Dadaism or Christianity? No. Can he so believe if he so wills (chooses)? Yes.
Can Benefield by force take over a department of psychology and claim it for 20 years? No. Although by political hook or crook he might.
If Benefield is walking on ice, falls and breaks his leg, did that have to happen? No, he could have stayed inside of his home.
Is Benefield responsible for his words, actions, conduct, and behavior? Yes, as long as he is in his right mind (sane).
Doctrines of determinism, predestination, and Divine providence do not make robots out of people.
Finally, there is another law which I find. It is the Tenth Law of psychology.
XI. ELEVENTH LAW
ATTITUDE CAN MAKE OR BREAK A PERSON
One thing , among others , which is really bad is a bad attitude
“Attitude” pertains to disposition. It can include opinions and viewpoints. It can also include outlooks, ideas, reactions or responses to people and things. A normal attitude will include positive and negative traits. Not all positive or all negative. It is necessary for an attitude to be healthy. We can say that a belanced attitude is desirable.
Psychology studied attitude for many generations. Psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychoanalysts have studied attitude, written many case studies, and set forth many ideas and theories about it. It is subject matter in a general psychology course. The importance of the attitude is manifested.
Attitude is part of a person’s personality. Personality pertains to the whole person, to the behaviors and characteristics of an individual. The way of thinking thoughts, ideas, likes, dislikes, outlook on life, body language, and so forth, show or display an attitude. My article ATTITUDE ends this chapter. The article has been widely circulated and many were framed and were pupular. Attitude reflects the personality.
Temperament pertains to the overall attitude of an individual. It is a personality characteristic. It is studied in personality psychology, is a trait, and is important to personality types. A sad or depressed temperament can damage a personality. Personality problems often occur because of attitude and/or temperament. If a person has a very sensitive temperament, is easily embarrassed, or non-self-assertative, then that person needs counseling, and could need psychiatric evaluation. While a child might show symptoms of these things it is possible for a constructive parent to guide the child to more maturity. However, if the parent cannot then a child psychologist is in order.
Some theorists think that attitude has very much to do with making or breaking a person and his/her personality. But we should not go that far. Other phenomena contribute to the making or breaking processes. For example: lifestyles. Then there are opportunities or lack of opportunities; acting or the failure to act at the right time, et cetera. While attitude can make or break a person it is not everything.
Illnesses can hamper or at times help an attitude. There are times when a person suffering from a deadly disease can be an inspiration to other people to go on and try to make the most of their lives.
A defeatist attitude needs to be adjusted, changed. Backgrounds of total or almost total failures must be overcome. A person must refuse to be a slave to backgrounds, abuses, mistakes, immoral actions, and so on. Such slavery will only cause more problems.
Some people build a winning tradition. They expect to win and they plan and work hard to do it. They do not lose sight or thought of the goal. Such people often win. When I was an undergraduate and then graduate student at Oklahoma University, it had a great reputation of winning. The football team and fans always expected it to win. It did! But a winning attitude can be lost as the demise of the Oklahoma University Sooners winning tradition demonstrates. But it can be built back.
Children can develop positive or negative attitudes about learning because of attitudes of some of their teachers. Some teachers in the beginning grades kill the interest in learning in many children. A hateful, distraught, aggravated teacher can cause many kids to develop a bad attitude about education which can ruin them in school.
It can also, among other things, cause many high school dropouts. Some college and seminary professors do the same things to some of their students. Some professors are so screwed-up in their attitudes, and have such dull, warped, or debased attitudes that they greatly cost colleges, universities, and seminaries because of driving away students. This costs numbers, dollars, and reputations. Moreover it hurts many students, and can hurt many parents who help their teenagers through higher education. Flatly stated many professors ruin the lives of many students. Quality education does not include deliberately running off many students.
Some church people at times wonder why so many people leave their church. The hard fact is that many negative and bad attitudes are found in abundance in religious groups. Among other things some religious people have mentally ill problems and personalities. Others are just flatly miserable in their religious existence. Such people do not need to be condemned. But they need help from counseling and/or from other mental health professionals -- provided that some of the caregivers do not have sick attitudes.
Rev. Norman Vincent Peale, the late advocate of positive thinking power, motivated many people to become thinkers which were too positive, and overboard. Many of these thinkers flooded New York psychiatrists and psychoanalysts. To reinterate, a normal person will have positive and negative thoughts, not either or, but both and. People should think logically instead of going “out on a limb.” Rev. Robert Schuller emphasizes a “feel good religion,” which influences many people. The Peale version, and the Schuller version, are both financially successful. There is nothing wrong with success. However, these “feel good” versions of religion are conformed to the White American middle class, and upper middle class, and to the upper class. Money might, and White together, with no Biblical or theological depth. The attitudes appear to be aloof.
A good attitude should accept people, be ready to establish rapport, to understand, to progress, to help, and to love. The good attitude is psychologically healthy. And the personality ought to be healthy, and this “ought” implies “can.” This attitude should be true not feigned. It ought to be warm. It can be all of the above.
Remember, a bad attitude can be the results of background and environmental factors. Bad attitudes can result because of abuse and mistreatment. They can occur because of a lack of being loved. Some people have had bad breaks in life, much loss, much heartache, and their attitudes at times leave much to be desired. They and other people need to work on their attitudes. ATTITUDE ALERT is the call to be alert to, and aware of, your attitude. If it needs to be repaired or adjusted, then you should get proper assistance in coping with and improving that attitude.
An attitude can make or break a person. This is psychology’s Eleventh
Law, and it is a necessity.
Attitude is a way of behaving, feeling, and thinking. Body language
can show attitude. A beaten attitude will display itself in a body. A defeated
attitude shrinks a posture. Facts: education and hard work can help build
a healthy attitude. Money, circumstances, failures, and successes will
help make or break an attitude. Utopian religions and glorious political
promises are false props which cannot produce a realistic attitude. Religious
and political defeats can wreck attitudes. A ruined attitude can mean a
ruined person. Such ruin is the wreck of life. Appearance, gifts, talents,
and skills can be enhanced by a good attitude. Attitude and personality
are hard to separate. A bad attitude can damage the individual, a family,
a relationship, a marriage, a church or synagogue, or a business. Enough
bad attitudes can damage a nation. Some attitude adjusters are: the tribe,
the whip, the military, the prison, and capital punishment. Threats, fears,
hope, and the completion of goals can adjust attitudes. Love, hate, jealousy,
and envy, and racial and ethnic conflict can do the same thing. So can
ethics, isms, and governments. But the best attitude adjuster (hopefully
for the better) is the realistic self.
Richard G. Benefield
XII. TWELVETH LAW
HUMAN BEINGS NEED LOVE
“Reality” means that something is real, actual, and is not imaginary. If X is real, then; X has actual existence. Reality is not make-believe. Psychology is greatly concerned with reality. The reality principle in psychoanalysis and psychology is involved with the self and its adjustment(s) to cope with, and meaningfully relate to, and work, and survive, in the real world. Reality is not in retreat from the real world, and it does not run from the real world. Reality therapy is one effective method of treatment when a self breaks to the point of not being able to face reality.
One great need, a real need of human beings, at least those who have their faculties, is the need for love. Not make-believe love but real love! Dreaming, non-realistic love, which is not attainable, can damage a person. Watered down love stories, the kinds that help people forget reality, do not prepare a person for love in the real world.
Real love is the need. American, French, British, Spanish, “play-like love,” et cetera, is not real love. Notions of phony love offer little help, and a lot of hurt and disappointment. Instead of retreating into day-dream love a person needs to take the risk of finding and practicing real meaningful love. It can often be found and realized you know!
Psychology has studied and conducted experiments about love down through its history. Love is always a curious and popular subject.
Love is basically a strong affection; it can be a strong dedication, or devotion to a person. Real love of a man and a woman for each other is one of the three strongest love-bonds. The other two strongest love-bonds are the love of parents or a parent for a child or for children, and the genuine love of a child or children for a parent or for parents. This is family love. Without this love-bond families can become dysfunctional or much more dysfunctional when there are other severe problems.
Some philosophers, and some other scholars had trouble defining love and/or the different types of love. But this problem can be solved.
Jewish and Christian theology based on the Book of Genesis teaches that God created Man and Woman, and that He established marriage only between a Man and Woman. This heterosexual married couple produced children, and the nuclear family started in the world. Some theologians argue that nature confirms only this type of marriage and family. The love between a husband and wife, and for children and parents, was mentioned above.
Sexual love-making, and sexual intercourse were at home in the voluntary bonds of matrimony.
Times changed down through history, and through the histories of people, cultures, and nations. Now there are various types of marriage, love, families, and so forth. Many counseling psychologists often have problems and struggles doing love and family counseling today. These problems are sure to increase.
In the opinion of this author illicit love and sex are enjoyable and fun. Both have tremendously strong appeals and can get strong holds on people. While many people have a fear (phobia) of sex, this is not a normal response. Fears or failures to meet both love needs, and sexual needs within a marriage, can ruin the marriage. Unfaithfulness of one spouse or another can also damage or ruin a marriage. While sexual practices outside of marriage, and sexual unfaithfulness within a marriage, can be fun and rewarding, it is love and sex within the happy bonds of a heterosexual marriage which are by far the best.
A baby has the need of a parent’s love. A husband and wife should truly love each other and their child or children. No one will make them practice such love but they should.
In the past millions of people have practiced dangerous, vicious, and/or uncontrolled, and unwise sexual lifestyles. Millions were killed or died because of plain stupidities. Today there are millions of people who are playing follow the leaders -- to some of the same dooms. Perhaps it would help to reason logically.
Love is strong and the need of love for human beings makes the need
for love a law of psychology.
XIII. THIRTEENTH LAW
HUMAN BEINGS NEED FREEDOM
People must be willing to take the risk of freedom in order to have it.
“Freedom” means not being bound by rules, regulations, policies, or laws. Such bondage restricts, limits, or prohibits the opportunities of education, opportunities for creativity, and for free inquiry, and the free exchange of ideas in a free society. Freedom entails freedoms (plural), which are personal and individual liberties. Freedom includes not being controlled by a foreign government or by a United Nations type of government or by a political party or parties. There should be civil freedom, political freedom, and freedom of religion. Yet, when either one or more of these institutions attempt to take control of a government, or to prevent the personal and individual freedoms and liberties of the people, then it becomes the duty of the people to prevent tyranny from taking control. It is within their obligations to demand freedom, and to settle for nothing less than ongoing freedom which cannot be stopped.
Freedom should and must include a real freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, freedom of the press (freedom to publish), academic freedom, and freedom to marry, establish families, and the right to be free from the control of governments. Neither should free people live in fear of a government, its powers, or in fear of any government agency or agencies. Neither should any people be forced to be under a dictatorial control of any type of tribal government. Some contemporary tribal governments use control methods and other techniques which are criminal. They are criminal in Indian culture, and in White culture. This should not happen. All people in and under tribal governments deserve freedoms and liberties. People, completely regardless of race or ethnic groups, deserve and must, MUST, have personal and individual freedoms and liberties.
By now many psychologists are going mad because they believe in the social control of people. Social control includes governments, laws, and prisons. It also includes restrictions on individual freedoms and liberties. Many psychologists, and other social scientists, are afraid of personal freedoms. They fear to take the risk of freedom. They and politicians write the crap which people must wade through to demand and maintain their freedoms and liberties.
But, people need to be free!
All people benefit in a free country, except the people who are opposed to the freedoms of the masses of people.
The one-fourth Mohah Choctaw in me will now do some talking. My Hebrew last name, and the Scottish Highlander must be quiet for awhile.
You White people, most of whom cannot be introspective about your race, ought to take courage and face your European hangovers. You want more and tougher laws to control people and to prevent many freedoms. You want a White advantage in everything, O ye of little faith in all of humankind! You make yourselves masters, deceiving your own hearts, living myths and lies, and persecuting your humankind neighbors. But you are wrong.
You turn your eyes into illogical labels and practice label hypocrisy. Many of you devour peoples’ money through unfair taxation and the privilege of the power of crooked politics. You are criminals inwardly and conformed good citizens outwardly. Are you worth any sparrows?
Many lawyers devour freedoms in their politics the way ravenous gluttons devour a dessert. Are there woes against such lawyers? Law dogs gone rabid!
Multitudes of you, about 40 percent in the United States, hide behind conservative and liberal labels. You slaughter logic yet some of you sound professional. Your arguments are sound, all SOUND, your labels substituted for human beings. Your labels limit your power, hallelujah, and they are your dictators. Hopefully they will continue their illogical domination of your political power. Hallelujah, you White ones who fear the mixed masses of people and their freedoms.
White religion is a sight to behold! It is not, was not, and never will have been Christian. On the contrary, it is sick racist illusion. White souls ought to become realistic and really face themselves.
Whites, all over hell, and half of Georgia, fancy themselves to be in a chosen religion. This mighty Whiteyism is merely dressed up illusion and make-believe. Your White medicine religion is so weak that you try to put your religious cronies in political offices so they can make more federal and state laws to enforce your so-called religious morality. You will rob freedoms from other people, many White like yourselves, in order to establish your own narrow-minded notions of White freedoms. Your race has a history of suppressing freedoms of conscience and religion, and other races share this same history. White does not make right!
Now it can be seen that human beings need freedom.
Mussolini (1883-1945), the Fascist dictator, when he got control of government power in Italy, expressed his opinion that Italians were tired of the freedoms they had. So his government took those freedoms too. (Italians did not have much freedom in the first place). Many Americans, and people in other countries which have some freedoms, appear to be tired of freedoms today. There are always some politicians and religionists who are ready to end your freedoms. Their spirits and logic are bound, and they will bind yours if you allowa them to do it.
There are many, many reasons why people, all human beings, need freedom.
This need constitutes the Thirteenth Law of psychology.
Agreement about controversial subjects in psychology is not very easy to achieve. But it is possible. However it is not completely necessary since the different disciplines (schools) of psychology are set to disagree. The author’s preference is for humanistic psychology which is not to be confused with the dwindling philosophy of humanism. Psychology is short on logic and like some other sciences is long on traditions and a set of authorities from the good ole days which never were. Some of psychology’s problems and controversies could perhaps be solved if all psychology students everywhere were required to take courses in logic and in critical thinking. This requirement might also help sift some of the religionism out of entangled psychology.
Psychology needs a system of laws and now it has one. Instead of being rejected, these laws should be critically studied and examined. Psychologists should not allow their sacred cows to thwart the progress of a science which has entanglements in efforts to sanction changing practices which are changing mores. Some things which were once true in psychology are now false. Some false is now true. What is next?
Dr. Win Wenger, Ph.D., through his writing mentioned early in this work, was influential in motivating thinking initially about the first law of psychology, and this in turn “pushed” thinking further in the direction of the 13 laws of psychology. Dr. Wenger is an advanced writer and author with many publications to his credit. It would be both interesting and worthwhile to read a response on his ideas about the first law, as well as the whole set of 13.
Views of other psychologists and other professionals will have been
welcomed and appreciated regardless of their conclusions. It remains to
be seen what the public will find.
1Wenger, Ph.D., Win, “Discovering the Obvious!” Gaithersburg, MD: Project Renaissance, 1998, p. iii.
2Wenger, Win, “How to Increase Your Intelligence.” East Aurora: N.Y.: D.O.K. Publishers, 1987.
3Wenger, Ph.D., Win, “A Method for Personal Growth & Development.” Gaithersburg, MD: Project Renaissance, 2nd Edition, 1991.
4Wenger, Ph.D., Win, and Wenger, Susan, “Your Limitless Inventing Machine: Self-Taught Course For Creativity In The Arts.” Gaithersburg, MD: Psychegenics Press.
5Wenger, Ph.D., Win, “Beyond OK: Psychegenic Tools Relating to Health of Body and Mind.” Gaithersburg, MD: Psychogenics Press, 1979.
6Wenger, Win, “Beyond Teaching & Learning.” Gaithersburg, MD: Project Renaissance, 1992, p. 7.
7Wenger, Win, “How to Increase Your Intelligence.” East Aurora, NY: D.O.K. Publishers, 1987.
8Ibid, p. 1.
9Ibid, p. 6.
11Ibid, p. 26.
12Ibid, p. 10.
14Ibid, p. 12.
15Ibid, p. 22.
16Ibid, p. 16.
17Ibid, p. 154.
18Ibid, p. 16.
19Ibid, p. 17.
Wenger, Ph.D., Win, “A Method for Personal Growth and Development.” Gaithersburg, MD: Project Renaissance, 2nd Edition, 1991.
____________________, “Beyond OK: Psychegenic Tools Relating to Health of Body and Mind.” Gaithersburg, MD: Psychegenics Press, 1979.
____________________, “Beyond Teaching and Learning.” Gaithersburg, MD: Project Raissance, 1992.
____________________, “Discovering the Obvious.” Gaithersburg, MD: Project Renaissance, 1998.
____________________, “How to Increase Your Intelligence.” East Aurora, NY: D.O.K. Publishers, 1987.
Wenger, Ph.D., Win, and Wenger, Susan, “Your Limitless Inventing Machine:
Self-Taught Courses For Creativity in the Arts.” Gaithersburg, MD: Psychenics
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Professor Richard G. Benefield was called this century’s Renaissance Man. It is easy to see why. He holds five state university degrees, two degrees from church denominational colleges, and four seminary degrees. He has almost completed degree number 12. These are all earned degrees. Professor Benefield also holds many certificates and academic honors. These include an award from the United States Army for teaching psychology. He was elected to lifetime membership in Pi Gamma Mu, the national honor society for the social sciences. Graduated with the honor of Summa Cum Laude, the same as Phi Beta Kappa.
The teacher is a Philosopher, Theologian, Psychologist, Counselor, and a Terminologist. He is listed in “Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers.”
The author’s last name is from the Hebrew. He is one-fourth Mohah Choctaw Indian. Kiowa Indians gave him the name of TAH LEE AIDLE, which means “Big Boy,” and the name lasted.
He was ordained to the ministry of a major “Proatestant” church denomination. His service included several years in the pastoral ministry, one year in conducting revivals, and a radio broadcast which reached about one-half of the United States, and reached as far as Japan. His denominational hierarchy was heavily involved in politics and this became a problem of conscience for the minister. When the denomination began ordaining homosexual men, lesbians, and some bisexuals to its ministry, the scholar could not in good conscience accept it. He was then sent to pastor a church where he followed a pastor who was an official in the gay liberation movement. There were many problems because of all of these things, and Rev. Benefield, speaking more as a philosopher, gave lectures against religious involvement in partisan (party) politics, and later lectured on “Why I Cannot Accept the Gay Liberation Movement.” After the hierarchy called him before committees, he decided not to give in and compromise as he was told to do.
Then the pastor saw more immoral changes and partisan politics, he refused “to go along in order to get along.” The hierarchy, without formal charges, and without giving the Reverend a chance to respond to any grievances, ousted (excommunicataed) him from its ministry. He was without a pastoral salary, parsonage, or insurance benefits, and he lost retirement benefits. The defrocked minister says that he put his wife and three children through hell, and that simply by being quiet he could have avoided all of the trouble.
The author says that religious hierarchies fear men and women who refuse
to promote their radical and political programs, and who refuse to financially
support projects which are considered immoral and threats to freedom.
People the hierarchies called heretics had a way of being causes of severe backlashes against the injustices in their religious institutionalisms. Consequently they do not usually have the courage to publicly condemn heretics the way they did in their more openly violent past. The writer thinks that one of the main things that the hierarchy did was to actually liberate him, and set him free for creativity and self-actualization. He says that he forgave the hierarchy and that he expresses his gratitude for its underhanded politicing which removed his religious chains, and set him free from the darkness of the religious cave.
Prior to entering the ministry, Benefield served twice in the 45th Division Oklahoma National Guard and three years in the regular army. He has three honorable discharges hanging on his library wall.
Prof. Benefield served as supervisor for the American Red Cross Indo-Chinese
Refugee Program during the summer of 1975 after the fall of South Vietnam.
Completed many correspondence courses from Roman Catholic, “Protestant,” and cult groups. But accepted none of the groups.
Archaeological Lab Technician Certificate, Arkansas Archaeological Survey, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.
Much study and work in paleontology.
Built a private library of more than 50,000 volumes, a Scriptorium (Ancient and Modern Bible Collection), and museum (specializing in fossils and archaeology).
BA (Sociology) University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (USAO), a state university.
BS (Business Management), USAO.
BA (American Indian Studies), USAO.
BLS (Liberal Studies), Oklahoma University.
BAM (Applied Ministries), Oklahoma Missionary Baptist College.
MA (Philosophy with Psychology), Oklahoma University.
Th.B. (Hebrew and Greek), Oklahoma Missionary Baptist Seminary.
Th.B. (Theology), American Bible College.
Th.M., Th.D., American Divinity School, a training seminary of the Evangelical Christian Church.
Ph.D. (Counseling) Andersonville Baptist Seminary.
Pursuing one more degree, number 12.
Completed undergraduate courses at Southwestern Bible College, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Northeastern Oklahoma State University, and the University of Wiscousin.
Began Hebrew Studies at Temple Benai Israel (Jewish Synagogue), in Oklahoma.
Many Bible Courses with several being on cassettes and widely distributed.
Arkansas University (Started as a graduate assistant in philosophy).
Tutor in psychology for the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA).
University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (Courses in American Indian Studies, sociology, psychology, business administration, business management, criminal justice, and economics).
Cameron University, a state university. (Philosophy, logic, government, criminal justice, and political science).
Central Texas College, a state college (military education program on a US Air Force Base).
Pikes Peak Community College, a Colorado state college. (Military education program, army post, psychology and philosophy courses).
Oklahoma Baptist University (Southern Baptist); St. Gregory’s (Roman Catholic) College, With Monastery, and Bacone (American, Northern Baptist) College. (Three years for OBU and St. Gregory’s College). Two years for Bacone College in its State Penitentiary Program. Taught in three state prisons. Southwestern College of Christian Ministeries (Pentecostal Holiness). University of Biblical Studies and Seminary (Interdenominational).
College Courses for the Absentee Shawnee Indian Tribe of Oklahoma (3 years). Served as lecturer in behavioral sciences.
RECORD: Believe it or not! The only man in world history ever to teach for a Southern Baptist University, a Roman Catholic College, Northern Baptist College, an Indian Tribe, and state prisons all at the same time! He was not a member or in attendance at any church or religion while teaching for these institutions.
He taught diverse courses such as anthropology, geology, college algebra, abnormal psychology, human sexuality, political science, business law, counseling, education, theology, speech, world religions and many others.
Twenty-nine years of teaching experience mostly in state universities.
Used his military time and took early state retirement. Continues teaching on an adjunct (part-time) basis in the state university system.
Works constantly to complete other manuscripts and to get several completed manuscripts published.
abnormal behaviors, 11
abstract thinking, 16
academic freedom, 41
ACT and SAT, 20
actions, 33,34, 35
African tribal languages, 13
American Indians, 20
animal kingdom, 16
Apache Indian language, 12
Aquinas’ philosophy, 16
ATTITUDE ALERT, 37
behavior patterns, 13
“brain cultures,” 14
brain power, 16
brain transplants, 17
brain world, 15
Cambridge University, 27
capital punishment, 11
categorical syllogism, 12
clipped tongue, 12
cogito ergo sum, 16
college students, 11
common people, 30
contented pigs, 30
counseling, 13, 27, 36
creative awakening, 24
creative genius, 25
critical reasoning, 14
cults, 26, 32
cultural lag, 13
cultural pattern, 14
culture fair IQ test, 20
curiosity killing teachers, 24
death as an enemy, 27
death instinct, 27
death phobia, 27
death reports, 26
death wish, 26
defeatist attitude, 36
demand freedom, 41
depressed temperament, 36
destructive life pattern, 13
determinism, 33, 34
dread of death, 27
dysfunctional home environment, 13
educational psychology, 16
education, 13, 18
emotional words, 14
entangled psychology, 43
environment, 13, 14
European hangovers, 41
Extrasensory perception, 18
family love, 39
family support, 26
fatalism, 13, 27
Fosdick, Rev. Harry Emerson, 26
free agents, 33
free scholarship, 23
free society, 41
freedom, kinds of, 41
freedom of conscience, 41
freedom of inquiry, 23
geography of the brain, 15
habitual non-intellectuals, 16
habitual thinkers, 16
hate, 11, 31, 32
“heart cultures,” 14
heart world, 15
Hebrew thought, 16
helping profession, 11
human language, 12
human value, 29
humanistic psychology, 33
illicit love, 39
IQ, 18, 20, 21
Joyner, Mark, 24
label hypocrisy, 41
labels, 18, 25
Law, definitions, 8
Law of Species Reproduction, 9, 13
laws, 8, 9
learn dependence, 13
learn helpfulness, 13
life-long learning, 20
life oriented, 28
logic, 16, 25, 27
logic, Psychology short on, 43
logical predicate, 12
logical subject, 12
love, 31, 32, 39
love stories, 39
Marx, Karl, 32
Maslow, Abraham H., 29
meaningful goal, 29
meaningful life, 26
meaningful love, 39
mental health professions, 27
mental processes, 18
mercy killing, 26
mighty Whiteyism, 42
mind/body problem, 16
mystic, 17, 18, 22
mystical metaphysics, 17
mythical religions, 13
natural sciences, 9
normal, 11, 18
nuclear age, 15
Oklahoma University, 36
“pattern out,” 13, 14
personality, 36, types, 36
personality disorders, 11
philosophical metaphysics, 17
philosophy, science of, 9
phony love, 39
PP Principle, 29
prison courses, 25
Project Renaissance, 7
psychiatric evaluation, 36
psychiatric therapy, 13, 27
psychiatrists, 27, 29
psychoanalysts, 27, 29
psychologists, 27, 29
psychology, definition, 8, 11
psychology, sacred cows, 43
purposeful living, 26
purposeful ways, 14
quality education, 37
reality, 29, 30, 31, 39
reality principle, 39
reality therapy, 39
religionists, 13, 42
religions, 26, 32, 33, 43
religious nations, 15
religious suicide, 26
risk of freedom, 24, 41
ruined life, 14
Russell, Bertrand, 16
Scheele, Paul R., 11
science fiction, 17
Scientific empiricism, 8
screwball doctrines, 26
Self-direction, 13, 19, 29
seminary professors, 36
sense datum, 18
sexual lifestyles, 40
sick racist illusion, 42
slanted IQ tests, 20
social control, 41
social psychology, 16
social sciences, 9
social scientists, 41
Spanish language, 13
Species Language Acquisition, 13
stages of growth, 12
strong affection, 39
suicide, 26, 32
thinking substance, 16
Thomas Aquinas, 16
traditional problems, 17
tribal governments, 41
tribal social services, 13
true believers, 18
voluntary bonds of matrimony, 39
welfare trap, 13
Wenger, Dr. Win, 6, 11, 21, 24, 43
Wesley, John, 34
White medicine religion, 42
will, 33, 35
word awareness, 12