I started writing  Pennsylvania Echoes  because I wanted to improve my grammar.  I chose meditation, mindfulness and how they apply to my daily life, as the blog’s subject matter.  Writing about Mental Health Management has received the most appreciation.
My world- view will not cure mental disorder. but I cannot separate my world view entirely from management or my great concerns for Mental Health.  So I must present my thoughts, and tips on “Mental Wellness” in my own way and from my own experience–  if I am to be honest.
Any information you find is meaningful is presented as is.  There is no Warranty. Too bad I can’t cure my bad grammar.

Memorial Day and my Father on Good

Reblogged for Fathers day.
Happy Fathers Day !

Pennsylvania Echoes

That day, Fighting an unpopular In a foreign country, many of the soldiers of the same unit were split, fighting amongst each other. It was the late 1960s and like back home in the U.S. there were tension between races ran high… and sometimes violent.

This is the story as it was told to me.

At night mob mentality ensued. A group of white racist men-in fatigues were out to start trouble. targeting a fellow black soldier at barracks.
One man, outraged by this absurdity. stepped in between the mob and the colored soldier and angrily commanded them to stand down. Both the mob and this large imposing white man, (now intervening in defense of someone else), had weapons.

peace-symbol.jpgFortunately The mob did step down. Tempers cooled in the hot humid South East Asian night.

This story was not a surprise to me. In particular the actions of the tall…

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Change to and from

Change to and from :   The Paradoxical Theory of Change

What was tolerable then, may have no usefulness now. Growth is a collision of an every changing now . Growth is both erosion and assimilation. With relative autonomy , ( a slow developing set of behaviors in itself ) one may , as an agent of change , accelerate or stall the natural erosion and assimilation of:
people and things important ones life lilly-pad-blooming

  • values and meaning
  • experience
  • environment

As one reacts to pressures and novelties in contact with him and his internal health.

This is my summary of Arnold Beisser’s of Paradoxical Theory of Change.

Arnold Beisser wrote this as a preface for a Book by Fritz Perls , who developed a conceptual mix of humanistic psychology , experiential practice (or rather existentialism) and a graphical context into his so called “ Gestalt therapy ”. Fritz Perls did so with his wife , Laura and the help of numerous colleagues.

the purpose of Beisser’s “Paradoxical theory of Change ” was  introduce tthe humanistic psychology work by another.
However , there are important and brilliant observations in its rhetoric.

Change is seldom what a person thinks wants change  — at least initially and often do to desperation or boredom. change is a slow process.

that change occurs when one becomes what he is, not when he tries to become what he is not. Change does not take place through a coercive attempt by the individual or by another person to change him, but it does take place if one takes the time and effort to be what he is — to be fully invested in his current positions.

Beisser is actually describing a specific nature of change, with autonomy and agents in mind , more than postulating a science theory.

The Nature of Change may apply to integrated group than just a single person. and the Nature of change may describe a community , a social group or social movement.

But it is proposed that the same principles are relevant to social change, that the individual change process is but a microcosm of the social change process. Disparate, unintegrated, warring elements present a major threat to society, just as they do to the individual.

The Nature of Change can be compared in study by comparing what “is” to what it “is not ” , as they meet and mobilize .

First, there is an awareness within the system that an alienated fragment exists; next that fragment is accepted as a legitimate outgrowth of a functional need that is then explicitly and deliberately mobilized and given power to operate as an explicit force. This, in turn. leads to communication with other subsystems and facilitates an integrated, harmonious development of the whole system.

the construct or object or gestalt: “is” and “is not“.
Contact” is a graphical boundary of definition between what something is and what something is not — this is a fundamental point of gestalt therapy, where focus lies at the interplay of the two — the awareness of difference and similarity, cooperation , conflict, withdraw and assimilation.

A somewhat abstract social example:

How do we describe the feminist movement of the last 100 years ?
We’d define “what is feminism and “what is not feminism”
furthermore, we would need to create context for both.
“What happened when and where: ” What is Feminism ” met or meets “What is Not Feminism
As far as the changes is Feminism , Beisser would have us expect the pressures and agents of change, erosion and withdraws along novelties.
the social collision of what is and what is not Feminism.

The personal example :

A person may describe himself as
What I am ” meeting “What I am not
The observation of change of “I “and “I am not” is the erosion, the letting go of old tenants and the assimilation of new tenants. Beissers point in his essay, that person must come to realize all facets of this if he is to change “I” and “I am not ” in a healthy manner. the person must become aware of differences, past hindrances or resolve past parts of what he is , in the contrast , interplay , coercion and cooperation of what he is not.
Beisser extends this advise beyond the single person , so that groups community and movements can change in a healthy manner.


Paradoxical Arnold Beisser

Further more…

What happens at boundary of contact is more complex than a Boolean value of this or that. With that said, it is important to become aware of distinction of what two are compared.

Another important characteristic of perception is the tendency toward closure–that is, toward making meaning about a figure. Presented with a circle of unconnected dots, for example, the perceiver instinctively fills in the gaps mentally to create a complete, bounded image.


A description of the natural tendency of “far perception” to further relationships.

reification triangle image


What could be inferred is the desire to make connection between broken or non-wholes.
an autonomous body may seek beyond its boundary as much as take what it was minutes ago.

Today the ( growingly) controlled media outlets, especially the internet and pundits is full of standoffs and bullies, both in groups and as people.
Its almost like someone is teaching a foolish irrational ways of “change” or defense.
Whats at risk ? An integrated way of being , for single person , environment, and community.

The compartmentalization of old people, young people, rich people, poor people, black people, white people, academic people, service people, etc., each separated from the others by generational, geographical, or social gaps, is a threat to the survival of mankind. We must find ways of relating these compartmentalized fragments to one another as levels of a participating, integrated system of systems.

Arnold Beisser – Paradoxical Theory of Change

I wrote you a poem…

a one draft poem inspired by Beisser. I wrote this years ago:

All things are shaped by friction
Growth by by erosion,
the crash of objects against environment
water against rock, man against circumstance,
two crashing into one and other
I am no different,
except for the engine within that propels me
forward, fueled with past experience
with the gift of mind, sensation, and memory
and the awareness of the sparks
created between me,
and the who and the what
that I crash into.

titled by me “Self indulgence”. thanks Arnie.

weeded mint for air ducts


Garden Mint for HVAC

Growing mint on  on rich soil in the Mid Atlantic states – pretty easy. Too Easy.
Mint  or “Mentha” can overwhelm garden areas if not contained.
I have given a chore for extra mint.

Photo above is an air intake for forced air HVAC – (heating ventilation air condition )
Its not a bad idea to pay attention to these in a house. One really doesn’t need a dusty or moldy area for the air intake of the ventilation of the house, where the tenants breath the air.
The mint just gives a pleasant aroma to the air conditioning.

Growing Mint.

For the best growth in confined areas such as containers, topdress plants with a thin layer of compost or organic fertilizer every few months. Aboveground pots will need winter protection in cold climates.
In the garden, plant mint near cabbage and tomatoes.

Mint is can be grown in doors or out. Mint can be part of the supporting caste of a tomato garden, when not segregated.
Common usages , Brewing , cooking and aroma.


Houses need to breathe. They should draw in fresh air and exhaust stale air. In fact, some experts recommend that one half of a home’s air volume should be exchanged every hour.

older people and folks who live in “dangerous ” neighborhoods forget this.
One can really benefit from ventilated your home and clearing obstructions from vents and intakes.

Breathy healthy , indoors and out!

Balance of power U.S Fed

Pennsylvania Echoes

My opinion is that: the U.S government should have been or should be greatest functioning government there is — A government concerned for its people. A government that protects the safety of persons, and their legal space, from each other and from the government itself. When in time of peace and health, a government that does not obstruct the creed “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness ”

Different opinions are held on how much additional usage and power the federal government has. Their is no debate that the U.S government hasnot always lived up to full protection of its people and space. (eg. Slavery in the early 1800s)

Mexican Shoot Out

So how does the government work and how does it keep it self in check?
U.S. Federal Government has three branches, two that are influence by democratic vote.
Each of the three Branches ( EXECUTIVE, LEGISLATIVE , JUDICIAL…

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learning to breathing properly, calmly

dont forget…
Diaphragmatic Breathing

Pennsylvania Echoes

Sometime, somehow, growing up.. I forgot how to breathe, properly. I don’t know why or how, but Like a lot of people I forgot how to breathe, properly.

Most healthy Infants know how to breathe, they breathe using their abdomen, naturally. Later many people, like I did apparently, change to breathing with their chest muscles, unconsciously. Not only is this less efficient, this upper body breathing, is prone to feeling anxious or stressed, frequently.

When we are startled or frightened we gasp. This is a sudden inhale of air, using the chest muscles. Some believe this is part of our “Fight or Flight”  anxiety nervous system (known  as the Sympathetic Nervous System), where quick gulps of air are taken in by the lungs in order to have energy to react to whatever has frightened the organism.
It is possible that in are stressful modern…

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Anger rather than Sad

Sad, mad, hopeless ,contempt – normal and healthy.
Repetitious intrusive feelings maybe disorder .

Pennsylvania Echoes

from the Book of Life

Common tenants of Depression or Major Depressive Episodes

  • Persistent sad, anxious or “empty” mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities, including sex
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, feeling “slowed down”
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions
  • Insomnia, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Low appetite and weight loss or overeating and weight gain
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, suicide attempts
  • Restlessness, irritability
  • Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment

Common tenants of Anxiety―Depression (disorder group GAD)PDF
thanks https://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/depression/symptoms

What is Disorder?

  • Disorders such as Bipolar disorder, Personality Disorders. or Anxiety Disorders can only be “Diagnosed” by healthcare―professionals or psychologists.
  • One maybe diagnosed with 6 disorders or 1 disorder – this does not mean one is anymore “screwed up” than the other.
  • Disorder is categorized for the purposes of treatment & management between a client, therapist…

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Tree planting

With the large amount of rain that we have been getting in Pennsylvania , some new hills are forming on the lawn .
This is a good opportunity to plant a tree for the future .
Lawn erosion management – with a tree that looks good.
A popular choice tree in this region of America is the Japanese Maple.

rohamomiji, イロハモミジ, momiji, 紅葉 , Acer palmatum , or Japanese Maples are deciduous shrubs. This means they are right at home in the deciduous forests of the Mid Atlantic region of the U.S.
They are also relatively cheap: $20 to $100 , more for specially grown or hybrids. ( One can just find a sapling , like another Japanese maple I have planted elsewhere.

The Japanese maple are crimson , red , orange or green , depending on the variety and environment. they can grow 10 to 20 feet tall , tolerate partial or full Pennsylvania sunlight.

Trees , Water runoff , Watersheds

Trees and forests improve stream quality and watershed health primarily by decreasing the amount of stormwater runoff and pollutants that reaches our local waters. Trees and forests reduce stormwater runoff by capturing and storing rainfall in the canopy and releasing water into the atmosphere through evapotranspiration.

Trees and Stormwater Runoff

Planting trees doesn’t just feel good, its practical practice . Every tree keeps property healthy and intact. Trees reduce repair cost, who knows maybe even healthcare costs for humans.
of course, as those around trees know , trees are integral parts of any ecosystem .