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Although The Insight Project procedures all take a purely present time, objective view, the preparation for The Insight Project includes the following memory exercises, because it is hard to be in the present time if your attention is on previous experiences that you are unable to integrate comfortably.



A very useful way of recovering your personal history and putting it into perspective, is to make a 'Life Chart'. Take a large sheet of paper (preferably A3) and draw horizontal lines to divide it into decades - starting from birth at the top, down to the present time three-quarters of the way down, plus some space at the bottom for the future decade.

Then draw three vertical lines to make four columns - the 1st for personal events in your life; the 2nd for family events and sexual relationships; the 3rd for events concerning groups you have taken part in; the 4th for international events. For example, if you are aged 26:


So make up a chart of your own like this. Now fill in the spaces with your recollections, gradually building-up to a full chart of events and personal memories. Include all the significant events of your life. Add the names of people who had the most influence on you, and how. Include your key interests in early life and how they changed with time. Note your key decisions and what influenced them; also when beliefs started and when they changed and why. And project into the next decade based on the trends up to now or if you intend to buck those trends. Also consider, based on what you've learned, what might you have brought into this life in terms of attitudes, decisions, purposes and ways of being, i.e. what is inherent in you rather than something acquired, learned, or influenced by another. And compare your history with the way the world has been developing: what's similar and what's different.


If there is an episode from your earlier times that you wish to recall, you can bring it into clearer focus by using literal description:

  1. Let the scene or episode come into mind. When the scene is there with its people, color, sounds and atmosphere, begin to describe it in the present tense, "I am standing in the doorway looking out into the garden. A car drives up and stops ...";

    Continue, including everyone who is present, what they say, their expressions, what you feel, how you react and how they react. Re-create the movements, smells, sound, tastes, the temperature, any music that was playing, and any sexual feelings you had.

  2. When you have taken the scene as far as you want to go, let it fade away.
  3. Describe in the present tense what is happening now, "I am sitting looking across the room. On the wall I see a photograph and beside it is a lamp and I can here the birds singing outside the window ..."

Try this out with many past experiences from your Life Chart.


There is a very simple but powerful repetitive procedure, which serves to break through the charge-barrier between you and your memory bank. When this barrier is removed, it is much easier to be in the here-and-now, aware in the present moment. You simply say to yourself, the command: "Recall Something" and as quickly as you can, obtain a memory, then repeat the command. Any memory will do, whether it is from one minute ago or from long ago.

After a while you will run out of 'stock memories' and the barrier will become apparent. Keep going! Keep asking the question and keep the answers coming as quickly as possible - do not dwell on any of the memories.

Excellent further commands to use in the same way are: "Recall a communication", "Recall controlling something" and "Recall having something".


When you look back at what you have been doing, the moments you find easiest to recall are the times when you were most conscious or 'awake'. The following is a time-honoured Zen approach to raising the level of consciousness.

Go over, in your mind, the precise events of the last twenty-four hours. Get as much detail as you can. Whenever you sit down, having done a cycle of action such as going shopping, a board meeting or whatever, again, go over the sequence of events in precise detail, paying attention to all the sensory modalities: what you heard, saw, felt, smelt, what you said and others said, external movements, etc. You will find that you get better and better at doing this, and that as a result you stay more fully conscious in the here-and-now.


Sometimes you may find constantly recurring images, thoughts, emotions or concepts coming up and you can't get them out of your mind. The following is a useful handling in this situation.

On (whatever is persisting) is there:

(a) An effort to withdraw from it or something in it?

(b) An effort to stop it or stop something in it?

(c) An effort to stop and withdraw at the same time?

(d) An effort to suppress the picture or something in it?

(e) An effort to invalidate the picture or something in it?

(f) A protest against the picture or its content?

(g) An effort to hold onto the picture?

(h) An upset about the picture?

(i) A problem about the picture?

(j) A bad action (for which the stuck picture is the motive)?

If a question applies to you, try to get the feeling in your body of the effort, protest, etc and get all of the answer to the question. Continue until you spot exactly what is happening and then the item should blow away. The motto is: What you resist, persists.


Help is the willingness to assist. It is the make-break point of sanity; a person who is unwilling to offer or accept help in an area is neurotic in that area. Try answering these questions:

  1. "What are some ways you have helped?"

    "What are some ways you have not helped?"

    Answer alternately and repetitively until you feel released from the issue with some insight.

  2. "How have you helped yourself?"

    "How have you failed to help yourself?"

    Answer alternately and repetitively until you feel released from the issue with some insight.

  3. Consider the following people:

    Wife, Mother, Woman, Grandmother, Aunt, Daughter, Girl, Girlfriend, Husband, Father, Grandfather, Uncle, Son, Boy, Boyfriend, Child, Baby, Lover, Sexual partner, Business partner, Boss, organization

    In the absence of a Biofeedback Monitor, detect from the feeling in your body (e.g. tenseness in the chest or pressure in the forehead) which of the items listed has the most impact on you. Put this item in the brackets of the following questions and ask them alternately and repetitively until a satisfactory end point is achieved:

    "How have you helped a (.........)?"

    "How has a (.........) helped you?"

    Another time, maybe one of the other items will be the most useful to look at.


When you develop an antagonism, due to a disagreement or upset, this is how you can handle it. Firstly, identify the subject or the person that you have antagonistic feelings towards. Then the following specific questions are asked. Each one is asked until there is no more on the question, or you release the antagonism.

Regarding ..........., was your antagonism caused by:

Something you were forced into?

Something forced upon you?

Something you didn't achieve?

Something you found out?

Something you felt was missing?

Something someone supposed?

Something someone didn't grasp?

Something you wanted to keep secret?

Reminding you of something else?

Note: If the antagonism doesn't resolve by the end of these questions, then the final question will reveal a similar connected situation; in which case the procedure is repeated from the start.


The gains you achieve from working with these and other techniques can be realized and integrated by asking the following questions:

Is there something you have realized?

Has something been connected up with?

Has something been shown to be true?

Is something changing in your life?