An extensive work lies before you, waiting behind the screen that displays this page. I am not sure in what category or scientific field to place it. So far I have called it a ‘Holistic Psychological Theory’ as that best conveys that it is a new concept which still needs experimentation and thorough research to be considered an academic work. It is a new approach to solving many and diverse human problems and pains. The proof that it works is nothing more and nothing less than a considerable improvement of my own quality-of-life.
There are two beneficial ways to use this website. You can read it like a textbook, if you simply want to learn about the theory in an academic way.
Or you can read, study, apply the theory to yourself, and use the website as a guide to self-understanding and to improving your quality of life. In the Recovery section there are recommendations for beneficial activities.
There is one way to use this website which is not beneficial and not recommended: browsing around for quick problem-solving. This is not useful because this theory is new and unique. No matter what your background or current knowledge, if you read ‘ad lib’ you will almost certainly not correctly understand and benefit from the terminology/jargon that is used. Also, I have carefully built up understandings in a sequence of suggested reading given below. Thus, please use the sequence to ‘get’ what is said and meant. Then the theory can be of maximum benefit to you.
One exception to this recommendation is the Recovery section: You could potentially jump-start by looking at the exercises, meditations, and suggested beneficial activities in the Recovery section; they will work [change that word to benefit you] even if you don’t understand the theory yet [and even if you have a completely healthy Sense-of-Self.]
The website is organized in six main sections of which the sixth is ‘About HolisPsych.com.’ This section doesn’t contain theoretical content. It is about the background of the Theory, the company, and its co-workers. Click on the ‘About’ button in the bottom menu bar or follow the link on this page.
Section names in the Guide below aren’t a specific page; they are all the pages on a specific subject. Within each Section there is an Introduction to that subject, followed by the various pages on that topic/subject.
The five sections of the Theory each are printed in a different color font on the Site Map:
The color of graphics on the pages of the various sections reflects that same color so you always know in which section you are.
You will need to become familiar with a number of terms that are specific for this theory, or you won’t understand in a ‘gut way’ how our unhealthy Substitute Sense of Self develops in childhood and evolves over time, and how it affects us in so many ways. When, through understanding the special concepts of this theory, you develop a personal ‘feel’ for what the theory is talking about, then it can become ‘real’ for you as possibly applying to you.
There are three ways the site is designed to help you gain that familiarity with the meaning of the special terms.
First, the most important terms are, on each page, summarized in ‘pop-ups’ you will see upon hovering your cursor over the term, like with the ‘Substitute Sense of Self’ link above. You can also click that link for a more detailed explanation.
Second, the first occurrence of each important ‘jargon’ term on each page is hyper-linked to a summary of the meaning in the Terminology Section.
And third, of course, you can go to the Terminology section itself and study the terms all at once.
Note: If you accessed this site through a key-word, a subject that you are particularly interested in, you will find on the bottom of that page links to a number of pages that you can use to enter the suggested reading order.
After the Welcome page, there are two ways you can go, either is fine. You can either go to the ‘About’ section or – if you want to dive into the theoretical part right away – to the ‘General Introduction’ section. Specifically, within that section, go to the Introduction to the Theory page and to the Synopsis page.
If you choose to go to the ‘About’ section, you’ll find information on the persons behind this work, about the general background and when to use the HolisPsych.com Theory. It answers the question “Is it useful for me in my particular situation to spend my time and put effort into studying this theory.” In the ‘About’ section you can also find out why and how the theory works and what the purpose is of HolisPsych.com as a company, and information on its founder and co-workers.
After having learned about the utility of the work and about the people behind it, ideally you then join the those readers who opted for the content of the theory right away by reading the Introduction to the Theory and the Synopsis page in the ‘General Introduction’ section.
After the Synopsis page, go to the page of Introduction in the Sense of Self section, then to the page of Introduction in the Motivation section. Next on the list is the page of the Introduction in the Pathology Section, and then the page of the Introduction in the Recovery section.
After that, if you haven’t done so already, take a look at the Site-Map, so you get a feel for the overall content. Don’t be concerned if you don’t understand the map now. It’s meant only as an overview and summary to refer to as you increasingly understand the Theory. This overview is the equivalent of the computer generated Link Map, which you can find in the right side bar, and which contains links to all the pages.
Your next stop, optimally, would be to glance over the Terminology list for a first introduction to new words/ideas used in this work.
Now, to go into more in depth of the Theory, please read in the Sense-of-Self Section (red-shaded pages) about the Natural-Sense-of-Self (pages 1-5), the lack-of-Sense-of-Self (pg 6), the Substitute-Sense-of-Self (pages 1-5), and the Restored-Sense-of-Self (pages 1-6). If you are not sure which pages to choose, please consult the Site Map.
The section about the Defining Self-Related Concepts (Definition of Self, Definition of Sensing, and Definition of Self-Esteem pages) goes into more detailed, academically-oriented descriptions of my commonly-used words such as ‘Self,’ ‘Sensing,’ and ‘Self-esteem.’ It contains some interesting visual aids, but you could skip those if you just want a general understanding of the Theory.
Next is the Motivation Section, and it is key in the Theory. The following pages are crucial for understanding the concept: the 2nd page of the Introduction to the Motivation Section; Direct and Indirect Motivation, a few examples; Comparing Indirect to Direct Motivation; Direct Motivation; and Indirect Motivation, as well as all the pages on ‘Ego-References,’ ‘Hidden Agenda’, and ‘Vehicles.’
You could make sense of the Motivation Section if you just read it by itself. However, the relationship of motivation to the development of a healthy Sense-of-Self is much harder to see unless you read the Motivation section after you have read the pages about Sense-of-Self, as I just suggested.
Now you can usefully explore the Pathology Section. Please start with the page with the Map for Healing the Sense-of-Self. You’ll see how the lack of a healthy Sense-of-Self can cause a huge diversity of issues, problems, pains, and challenges in life. You’ll probably understand the Map far better than at your first glance awhile ago, but you will understand it ever-increasingly as you further study the Theory.
You can read the Pathology pages in any order that is relevant for you.
In the Recovery Section you will find exercises (under construction)and meditations (under construction) that are meant to help with Restoring your Sense-of-Self. You can tackle those anytime you feel drawn to them; understanding the theory more deeply gives them more meaning.
The path described above is the optimal path through the Theory, for maximum usefulness to you. Keep this path in mind as you proceed, and refer to it to get yourself back onto the path, especially if you decide to make excursions into more detail-oriented pages.
Not every page in the site has been mentioned in the ‘optimal path’ just described. There are plenty of more detail-oriented pages to explore as you go along. Most of them will become clearly relevant at the best point in your journey of understanding
Among these, I recommend the pages on ‘Definitions’ in the Sense-of-Self Section and the pages on ‘Motivation-related Concepts’ in the Motivation Section. When on one of these pages you will find a suggested reading order at the bottom of each page.
On many places in the site you will find pictures of different-shaped trees (e.g. on the Front Page). Throughout the theory there are references made to the growth and development of a tree as a way to illustrate the processes that take place in our developing brain. This metaphor is extensively explained in the page ‘Tree-metaphor‘ in the General Introduction Section.
If you are looking for stories that clarify what this theory is about you will find them under the General Introduction Section. So far there are three stories: The Analogy of the Castle of Enmeshment, A Direct versus an Indirect Relationship with the Self and Chasing Butterflies. You can read those anytime it seems relevant to you.
Now there are a number pages in the General Introduction section that are left unread at this point. The most important of those is, ‘The Importance of a Sense of Self to the world’ , which speaks for itself.
You won’t need to refer back to this Guide as you go through the site.
In the Site Map you will find an indication after each page name that tells you whether it is essential to read that page for the understanding of the theory as a whole (e) or whether the page merely adds more detail (d).
If you are browsing around and unsure whether you are looking at an essential page or detail page, quickly click on the Site Map, and each page listed there is labeled ‘e’ or ‘d’.
Also, as you read through the site, each page will refer to what (ideally, in optimal sequence) you would have just read, and to where you would go next. And if you accessed this site through a key-word, a subject that you are particularly interested in, you will find on the bottom of that page links to a number of pages that you can use to enter the suggested reading order.
Three possible starting points for your are:
We hope that this site will guide you through your journey of self-discovery!