Questions for Reflective Self Examination


Twenty years ago I needed to complete some questions prepared by Caroline Jones so that she could work out what questions to ask me in an ABC interview in Caroline’s program “The Search For Meaning”.

 At the time I thought that the questions were really an in-depth search of me and "I bared my Soul". I believe these questions can be particularly useful for anyone wishing to do some reflective self-examination.

So to that end – “being of use to someone” – I have reproduced all the questions and my answers. I have updated one answer and have marked it accordingly in Q.9.

Q.1  How do you feel about this conversation in which you’re being invited to reflect on yourself and your life and its purpose?  Is it a usual or unusual experience for you?

A.1  Unusual – excited.  I have a lot of experiences – enough for 3 lifetimes I reckon.

Q.2  What is your earliest memory?

A.2  When I was 2 in India – playing with water and little fish came out of the hose in the garden.

Q.3  Would you want to say something about your relationships with other members of your family: eg. Were you the youngest, eldest, only child, adopted – and with what effect?

A.3  Eldest of 3 – happy childhood except my 7th year at Sanar Boarding School in India.  Supportive family.

Q.4  Is there some motto or adage by which you have approached life?

A.4  If another can do it – I can.  Persistence?  Dare to be free?

Q.5  Does this sum up your philosophy of life, and/or are there other maps which you have found to help you chart a course in life?  Philosophy, religion, faith, ideology?

A.5  No.  Pursuance of inner peace which led to my spiritual journey.

Q.6  Have you a model, image or metaphor of meaning which helps you make sense of life?  How does it help?  An example perhaps from your experience?

A.6  This life’s experiences is a “blip” on the progress of my soul’s journey.  The balancing of karma in successive lives is to me the only thing that makes sense of what we call tragedies.  The ultimate journey is the soul’s journey back into God’s positive energy.

Q.7  Have you a clear sense of your purpose in life?

A.7  My vision: Operating a Centre for Life Skills, learning – set in the countryside.

         My mission:  To increase the awareness that we each have – an enormous power within us and how to tap that power.

         Spiritually:  To do what it takes to achieve Soul Transcendence at the end of this physical life.

Q.8  How do you think you would be described by most?  And is that how you see yourself?

A.8  Gentle, loving, giving, open, strong (and that is how I see myself) and for some, an enigma – not understanding how I can openly discuss and use my daughters’ death to encourage others through adversity.

Q.9  Who are/were your heroes/heroines or other influential figures in your life (these may be real or from literature, comics, etc.) and what made them interesting to you?

A.9  My Dad – I loved his stories and his fairness and his encouragement.  Ghandi – how his simple ways moved a nation.  John Roger, who is my spiritual teacher and mentor/founder of the Church of the Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness. Winston Churchill and Sir John Monash.(Sir John Monash is an update being the greatest leader Australia has ever had).

Q.10 Have you ever had any moments in your life when everything changed and was never the same again?  A moment when you learned something very deep, basic, that you had never understood before?  Something that is difficult to put into works perhaps?

A.10 1.  Andrew, my son, had had asthma since 2 years old.  When 18, in 1983, he collapsed twice and was on a cortisone drip in two hospitals within 24 hours.  I took Andrew to a doctor for some alternative treatment, where he was taught how to relax between spasms of asthma.  Andrew improved.  He then broke his leg so badly that it was considered that he would lose it.  With some experimental treatment plus the asthma doctor treating Andrew how to mentally deal with hispain and mentally work at healing his leg, Andrew saved his leg.  Wow!  The knowledge of the power of the subconscious was born to my awareness.

         2.  Whilst I was practising what Andrew taught me (for I wanted to learn it), I read about the power.  One book – “The Power of the Subconscious Mind” by Joseph Murphy talked about God within.  To me this was akin to being blasphemous – a great awakening to me.

         3.  The shot gun murder of my three daughters on 23 January 1987 was an unbelievable shock.  Life really hasn’t been the same since then and their deaths were the catalyst for doing the work that I do now.  I had the tool of Meditation to help me come to terms with that tragedy.  During Meditation whilst struggling with why were the girls killed and with anger and revenge, I was inspired by my voice telling me that this attitude would consume me from inside and that the way forward was acceptance, love and forgiveness.

         4.  The concept and necessity for me to “let them go” in order that their progress was not hindered – this was difficult for me to do and I cried nearly all day.

         5.  On Insight IV – (a 6 week facilitator course in the USA) – I learned from Steve Snyder how he taught people in one day, to relax and release stress in 30 seconds.  This is powerful – the first step to accelerated learning, the first step to getting through to the subconscious mind where memory, habits, personality and self image reside.  (I took 1½ years to PROVE to myself its power, because of the interference of my left analytical brain).

Q.11 Has there been another turning point for you?  Perhaps a crisis, illness or problem, opportunity or meeting with someone?

A.11  Commanding 3 Field Troop Engineers in Vietnam we were the first who searched out tunnels.  Massive amounts of intelligence and weapons were recovered from the tunnels of Cu Chi as we searched out over ¾ miles – and they were still going.  I was awarded the Military Cross and it was then that my self esteem really got a boost.

Q.12  What is sacred to you?

A.12  Meditation: Spiritual Exercises and using the “Light” for assistance.

Q.13  What is your most treasured possession?  Why?

A.13  My spiritual growth.

Q.14  What are some things that you really need to do/love to do, that you’d find it difficult to live without?

A.14  Talk to and work and play with my family – Sandra, my wife, Lara 11 and Ian 9, and my elder son Andrew, 29, and his Family.

Q.15  And what are some important moments of beauty and meaning for you?

A.15  When people in my seminars have a breakthrough – an “aha!”  an  “Oh! I get it”.

Q.16  In what situations do you feel most yourself, most authentic?

A.16  In my seminars during the discussion time – particularly about love, letting go or forgiveness.

Q.17  Is there a contemporary film, book or television program which has spoken powerfully to you?

A.17  Joseph Campbell’s book and TV series.  The Power of Myth.

Q.18  (a)  Is there a passage from literature or a poem which has great meaning for you and which you would like to read out?

A.18  (a)  Not really, except Henry Ford’s:  “If you think you can or you think you can’t – you’re right!”

Q.18  (b)  Is there music which has special significance for you?

A.18  (b)  Not really – I never really listened until 1983.  My first Insight Seminar.  Now I like Baroque Music and Ken Davis music which I use in all my meditation audios, eg. Forgiveness, Self Worth and Confidence, etc…

Q.19  What keeps you doing the work you’re doing?

A.19  I love people and I believe it’s my “responsibility” to make my experiences available to others … if it will assist.  I know that I fulfil a need for people who suffer enormous grief – suicide, murder, loss of job, divorce, life threatening illnesses – when they can reach out and converse with me … someone who has been through the experience and come out the other side.

Q.20  What most disappoints, upsets or holds you back now?

A.20  I still struggle with rejection, although I have improved.

Q.21  How do you make sense of, or come through sad/tough/painful/rejecting experiences or where do you find a source of dealing with these?

A.21  I go inside, to my Peaceful Place, and ask myself what can I learn and use from the experience.  I also use the process of forgiveness.

Q.22  How do you maintain equilibrium of peace of mind?

A.22  I use my Peaceful Place, inside my mind, ie. The powerful subconscious.  This immediately relaxes me and at the same time I call in the “Light” to assist me.

Q.23  Do you see any pattern in the events of your life?

A.23  YES.  The major pattern is leadership and training.  Started in the Army through Duntroon (then Civil Engineering at Sydney University) then commanding soldiers in New Guinea and Australia and Vietnam.  In the Army Reserve I commanded the Officer Cadet Training Unit and the University of NSW Regiment – training soldiers to be Officers and training Officers for their next rank.  Ever since 1975 I had a vision of a life’s skills centre set in the country.  Now I know I’m on the right track – teaching people how to access and use their own power in their subconscious mind – this leads to Accelerated Learning, Goals, Meditation and Healing, Children’s and Corporate Decision Maker’s Seminars.  THE KEYS:  I teach how to relax and release stress in 30 seconds (to get to the power within) and how to use emotion, (ie. The language of the subconscious mind) to achieve the getting of goals faster, eg. weight release, self confidence, sales, etc.

Q.24  Do you feel a strong sense of connection with other people, or do you feel more individual, separate, even sometimes an observer rather than a participant in life?

A.24  My concept is that we are all joined.  Two metaphors will assist.  Each of us has an electrical energy within our mind – this is measurable on the machine called the electro-encephalograph.  When we’re brain dead this line is flat on the screen monitor (the legal definition of dead) and yet our heart could still be ticking, pumping the blood around our body.  At this time the only difference between alive and dead is that electrical Energy has disappeared … it’s gone …. (where has it gone to?).

         When the sun shines in England and Australia it’s the same energy joined back through the body of the sun.

         I believe that God is an energy form (which can be measured by the electro-encephalograph) and that this energy is joined through the body of God (much the same as the sun’s rays) so that my position is that the God in you is joined to the God in me.  In this way we are all joined to the Universal Energy.

         When I send my love to you, I send my love to the God in you … which … is loving me more.  In this way, when the personality of a person interferes, I can be detached and choose to love … not the personality … but the God in them, which of course can be done at a distance.  I can just silently send the Light and Love – unconditionally and without judgement.

Q.25  What is loneliness to you and what place does it have in your life?

A.25  It doesn’t have a place and for preference I prefer people around me.

Q.26  Have you ever thought life had lost its purpose?  How have you recovered from that?

A.26  Yes – at the time of my divorce.  It was horrendous and there were four young children involved.  I wasn’t mentally prepared for it.  I was more mentally prepared for my daughters’ deaths.

Q.27  Do you dream?

A.27  A little – I’m now able to do quite a bit of self analysis.

Q.28  What is success for you?

A.28  To achieve any steps towards my MISSION and VISION.  For example expanding awareness within others of the power of the subconscious mind using my talks, seminars, books and audios.  Another example would be my successful launch of my book “No Need for Heroes” about my soldiers’ exploits in (and out of) tunnels in Vietnam.

Q.29  How do you feel about failure?

A.29  OK now – although I had enormous self esteem loss and doubts about my own ability – now, failure is a failure in a forward direction – it’s a stepping stone.

Q.30  Have you any fears?

A.30  I had fears for my soldiers in Vietnam.  Not so much of death but more “What was around the next bend?”  I have no fears now that I dwell on.

Q.31  Which characteristics of you would you like, and not like, to pass on to your children?

A.31  To pass on – my attitude to life, growing and learning, and using the power of the subconscious mind – they already use it.  Not to pass on – my tendency to shout back when shouted at and my seriousness.

Q.32  What place does laughter have in your life?

A.32  Great in my kids – I could do more – it’s important and therapeutic.

Q.33  What engrosses you now?  What is most on your mind just now?

A.33  Expressing myself clearly in writing – all this seems too verbose.

Q.34  Is there something you would want to say about the concept of time?

A.34  Time is now.  Life in the now – neither dwell on the past or the future.  Learn from the past and set goals to work to.

Q.35  Do you have strong feelings about getting older?

A.35  Not really – I would love to work and teach what I’m doing until the day I die.  I don’t see myself retiring.

Q.36  Do you think that life ends in death?  What are your main aims in life now?  What do you most hope for?

A.36  The soul, God’s energy, lives on and unless the soul transcends to the Soul Level, then it will re-embody, to balance more Karma.  My aim is Soul Transcendence.  I regard death as Heaven and of course we can have some heaven on earth (otherwise it’s hell).  I most hope to continue teaching until I die.

So, you now know that I really did "bare my Soul" with all these answers. I urge you to do it and I hope you get as much fulfilment as I did when I read it several years later.

All the best,



"Your gift from God is your potential – Your gift to God is to use it."


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