Arlayne: A Follow-Up Interview

by Jean Barton

JEAN: I'd like to do a sort of progress report on what has happened since your first interview in 1977. When you entered therapy in 1975 you'd had two abortions, you lived on pills - it seemed as though you were sleepwalking through your own life. Has your life become easier?

ARLAYNE: My life since my very first week in Primal was easier. My life became so easy because I learned at the end of that first week that not only would I be taken care of, but I would be the one who took care of me, and all I had to do was go with what was there.

JEAN: You understood that by the end of the first week?

ARLAYNE: Pretty much so. Because I had been struggling in my brain all that week, and it was at the end of that week that the feeling came up that totalled me out. I went down in a parking lot in what I thought was an epileptic seizure and it turned out to be what I assume they call the "Primal Experience." It was just body. I remember laughing at the end of it and saying to Shelley, "Oh, here it comes again and I'm too tired to even help it." It was like an involuntary happening, and once I had experienced that involuntary happening where I had no brain and didn't care whether I did or not, I let go trying to have this conscious control over whatever happened. And that's where I began my first learning of following my own intuition. Because I am the only one who knows what's right for me.

Shelley instructed me very well along those lines. Whenever I would ask him a question he'd reply quite often with, "You know the answer." So I learned very quickly that I knew the answer somewhere if I could just shut my brain off. The things that are right for me just happen, I just do it, I don't make choices in the sense of making a decision, like, "Shall I spend my time here or shall I spend my time there?" I just find myself following an intuitive sense.

JEAN: Your life started to become easy as soon as you began to see that you could take care of yourself by following your own intuitive sense ... at the end of that first interview, you were about to graduate from college with a degree in gerontology and you were thinking of starting your own sewing business. What happened?

ARLAYNE: The afternoon I graduated, I was driving home and passed Jones Real Estate School. I thought, "I wonder what they teach in there?" So I went in and 15 minutes later walked out having signed up and paid for a course in real estate! Three months after that l joined Coldwell Banker as a real estate agent. I discovered from that, every time I have a decision to make, if it's a brain decision it's not worthwhile. But if it's the whole person doing it, it's right.

JEAN: That was following your intuition, and your life really changed direction when you decided to go to real estate school.

ARLAYNE: Yes. At that point I was beginning to take care of myself in a monetary way and a physical way and I was in the process of graduating from being a primal person to being a person, out in the world. I knew that what was real for me was that I had to be on my own. I had to be my own source of everything. And I knew it wouldn't be possible-even thinkable-for me to go to work for somebody making a salary. It would go against everything in my whole system. I had to be my own source. Any penny that came in had to be because of energy I had put out, not what someone else gave me.

JEAN: Setting up a sewing business was a result of that feeling too, then ... that you had to be your own resource, not work for someone else?

ARLAYNE: Yes, I had been sewing, saw that I could make a living at it, and thought perhaps I could set up a shop. But the energy with that idea was that I can run my own life and I can do anything I want. The energy and the wheels I was putting in motion then were convincing myself that I could support myself and give me all I ever wanted.

All this followed because of being on the floor, seeing how I messed up my life following the beliefs created in infancy, that all I ever could get was what somebody else gave me. After breaking through that feeling I could see how it followed through my whole life, how I had never once struggled for, and achieved, something for myself out of my own energy. I could struggle and achieve for somebody else, but other than that all I ever got was what somebody was willing to give me. I had to be very conniving at times to make people want to give me stuff, and that's where my genius and energy went - in convincing other people that they ought to give me stuff.

And after breaking through that feeling, then understanding how stupid it was to continue living my life that way, I knew the only way I'd be happy is me being the Source of whatever I got, And the sewing business was a vehicle; and then it struck me, real estate's a better vehicle. One of my reasons for the sewing business was, at that time I was still terrified of being with people. With a sewing business I could still be in a room all by myself and never have to talk to anyone. By the time I graduated from college, which was about eight months later, I was O.K. with people.

JEAN: How did that come about?

ARLAYNE: : I think mainly because I wasn't in feelings so much. When you're overwhelmed in feelings you can't com- municate with other people. And I was more and more interested in becoming functional - as functional as possible - and I was always pushing myself to function.

JEAN: Were you doing anything else at that time to help you be more functional?

ARLAYNE: That was when I was starting with the Prosperity Consciousness Workshop as a learning tool for myself as well as sharing what I was discovering.

JEAN: What led up to your beginning that Workshop?

ARLAYNE: A friend of mine at school told me there was this thing on being able to budget your money, and I said, "Oh, I'd better go." I just did it. Again, I didn't make a choice in the sense of making a decision, And out of the Prosperity Consciousness Workshop came Pip Inc. Designer Builders. A group, five of us, decided to do something in the real world that would produce money. So we bought a little old house in a slum area, totally gutted it out and rebuilt it ourselves and sold it.

After that we began hiring workers to do all the work and each of us then took the responsibility of doing the type work we love doing most which would fit in with renovating houses, Soon we started getting offers from other people to redo their houses and we were on our way. So now we're mainly remodeling, though we try and keep one project of our own going all the time . . . Also, at that time I was just learning that your brain can be programmed. So I was into positive thinking - I had just happily learned how it works through affirmations I learned about in the Prosperity Consciousness Workshop: that is that you can't digest a positive thought if you've got the opposite negative. So the idea I discovered (that I was delighted with) is I'd take a positive thought, work at it by writing it over and over, saying it to myself over and over - jamming it down my throat - the feeling of what I was doing was, "I'm going to swallow this whole thought whether I like it or not until I would start spitting up the precise words of the negative feeling that kept me from absorbing the positive. The first one I worked on was, "I deserve to be happy and prosperous." And that kept me on the floor for about three months. That was a biggie!

The first negative thing that came up was feeling I was dying, and the precise words at the end of my session were, "I don't deserve to be, I don't deserve to be". How can you add anything to that if you don't deserve to be? My system wouldn't absorb a thought that contained life for me. Over a period of two or three months I used that positive thought to burn up all the implications of what that meant. And then I got through the "I deserve to be" part and it no longer triggered bad stuff. I had connected all I needed to there - at least temporarily - and I went on to the "happy and prosperous" part and that brought up a whole new bag of awful connections I had to make before my system could absorb the whole idea, "I deserve to be happy and prosperous." But with the discovery of that I speeded up my therapy tremendously. I gleefully grabbed hold of any positive idea I wanted for myself and knew it was automatically in force as soon as I dredged up every negative that kept the positive to my being effective.

. . . my life isn't old rehash any more; it's new stuff moment by moment. Each day is a new adventure. Each time I let go of negative self beliefs I try to fill up the hole with goodies. it took me a couple ofyears to get a strong toe hold with creating a new life - it's so easy to stagnate and keep old patterns. But when I could see or recognise the amount of effort and genius involved in getting rejected or in staying poor I could also recognise the amount of effort and genius available to choose an alternative.

JEAN: That discovery was really a milestone for you.

ARLAYNE: Yes, and I still use it. It also aided the connections to come faster because a positive thought that you put into your mind will work immediately in your life and reality unless you've got a block there.

JEAN: That's what it's all about . . . removing the blocks.


JEAN: Are you happy and prosperous?

Arlayne: Whenever I feel I am, I am. Because I can feel dead broke and think Oh! I'd better have macaroni tonight because I can't afford meat and the reality is I have a lot of dollars in the bank. Other times I have no dollars in the bank and I have everything in my life I could ever want. I can go to the grocery store with only two dollars and I can't think of anything to buy.

JEAN: So what's your definition of prosperous?

ARLAYNE: My definition of prosperous is having all my needs met and getting all my wants taken care of. And how much more could anyone have? Now, if I were to say I want a lot of money, that would be entirely different.

JEAN: How has your wealth changed.. your number of dollars?

ARLAYNE: That's changed significantly. As soon as I learned I could make $1,500 a month I went after $2,000 a month. When I knew I could make that, I went in for other types of things involving dollars that gave me large sums within a particular time. Interspersed in that I always have times of feeling unprosperous where I manage to blow the money I have accumulated. But I know I can make it back any time I want so its not a big deal for me. I understand the meaning of being poor and being rich. It just depends on how I feel. I know that in factual reality I can cause my bank account to jump two or three thousand dollars if that's what I truly want, feel I deserve and am going to get. I get it. If I'm feeling I don't deserve it, I don't get. I have proved to myself over and over again I get what I go after. ltjust has to be a whole selfgoing after it. I can't have any negative pieces dragging me back.

So what I work for is that clarity of wholeness and when I'm there I name the dollar figurer want, and before long I have it. Money is so interesting ... because it's a symbol for how life operates. If a person's gonna lose, they're gonna lose and there's nothing you can do to control that. But the same is true for a person who's going to win. They'll win and it won't be through their brain. It will be just from an inner knowledge of the right button to push and the precise timing to do it. And it's an incredible inner mechanism that every human being has, and all that old feelings do are jam the system.

JEAN: Which leads me to ask if your still primal.

ARLAYNE: Not in the sense of getting wiped out. The theory of it I use daily. When I suddenly feel down I can track in a couple of minutes what it is.

JEAN: Is that a result of your having spent so much time on the floor in your therapy?

ARLAYNE: Absolutely. I wanted to be down my first couple of years of therapy. That was so pleasurable for me to be down on the floor writhing in agony.l had spent a whole life time of being dead and my God! I spent two years of being so alive who cares where it comes from! At least, pain I could feel.

JEAN: So what you learned in primal it's still a tool you use?

ARLAYNE: It's the same theory. When on the surface I appear to myself to be down I can immediately shut off my brain, go inside myself and find out why. I'll say, Oh, I'm just terribly needy and that feeling came from that guy I just talked to who said such and such, and my system reacted with going into terrible need . . . which belonged in the crib.

JEAN: It's because you've experienced so many times in primal being in the need, in the crib, that you can do this?

ARLAYNE: Yes. And I learned that that was the connecting point for being O.K. in the present. As soon as I know where it comes from I can say, "That guy gets to say anything he wants to me and I get to choose whether I want to go into need feeling or make the next phone call ." And as soon as I make the connection of where the feeling belongs, it's over. It's the magic of primal. And you can do it in your head.

JEAN: Life is simpler when you know where the feelings belong.

ARLAYNE: Yeah. But I'll sometimes get stuck on a downer for two or three days if I can't find where a particular feeling goes. I often comment to myself that if l'd just go to the center and crash for a while I'd find it probably in a few minutes.

But I don't want to do that any more so I continue being on a downer for another day or two until suddenly, I'll get the little connecting piece and know how I messed myself up for a few days. And as soon as l know that connecting piece, its magic. The feelings are gone.

JEAN: In line with that, you recently took Kathy's workshop on "Keeping Your Own Place." How does that fit in for you?

ARLAYNE: Some of my most recent exciting ideas have come from Kathy's workshop. For anyone who understands how to make the connection between a trigger in the present - when something happens in the present that causes old feelings to come up - you track back in your mind to where you first started feeling bad and try to discover where you gave up. For me this translates into keeping my own moment-by-moment creation of what's real for me and rejecting someone else's reality for me. It's tricky. I'm noticing that my anger or confusion comes up only when I give up "my place", or fail to communicate it.

JEAN: Can you think of a recent example where that helped you?

ARLAYNE: I went to the bank for a loan a short while ago. I had everything straight in my mind; had all my papers, all my verifications lined up. Went in and the bank started saying, "We can't accept that" and "We'll have to take that in another form" and "This verification isn't any good", etc., through the whole meeting. I was totalled. I went home and struggled to get what the bank wanted in the right form which, five weeks later, turned out the bank was all wrong. What they really needed when the bank took my application to the authorities for approval was everything I'd brought on my first interview.

What I had given up at that first bank meeting was my own creation of how that bank loan ought to go. And I gave that up for the experts sitting behind their desks who didn't know what they were doing on that particular loan. But I accepted them as experts and never questioned why my own creation was out of whack.

JEAN: You lost your place in that first meeting . . .

ARLAYNE: I lost my place that first meeting. And I was in and out of feelings until in Kathy's workshop she took me back to the time of that first interview. As soon as I realized how I had lost my place and given up my own idea of what was right I got steaming mad, which would have been very appropriate at that meeting. I would have saved myself five weeks of feeling awful. I think it would have been very appropriate to have ended the interview and asked to speak with someone higher up. As soon as I cleared myself, weeks later, I went back to the bank and said I wanted to see the manager. The manager himself didn't understand this particular type of loan. I thanked him kindly for all his time and misinformation and went directly to the source of the person giving final approval on the loan. There I got all the correct information I needed. And I could have done that the first day bull wasn't able to do it until I was clear. I guess it just points out that I am the only expert on my life and what I want.

JEAN: What was happening to you during that meeting, if you weren't getting appropriately angry. What happened in your body?

ARLAYNE: All I knew was I was in feelings, that suddenly I was getting very depressed, sad - down. And the instant you start going down, that's what you have to start noticing. Your body knows and reacts - every person's body does.

JEAN: Yeah - when your body starts reacting ifs a sure way to know you've stopped preferring yourself.

ARLAYNE: It's the only way that I can think of that you ever know you stopped preferring yourself. And I think it's a wonderful idea that the Primal Center, as part of the Center's growth, is starting to add how to function in the here and now. It's similar to the information you pick up at EST. . . EST fit in for me just because I was into doing all the self improvement things I could handle. All those self-improvement things really work because I had primal and I'm connected to my own inner self. Before, I spent my life doing self-improvement things. And out of each one of them I'd get a little temporary high but it sure didn't last. Whereas after primal all of it works. Whatever I read or learn has a portion of real value that I can incorporate into my life and my way of thinking.

JEAN: Things have really changed for you.

ARLAYNE: Oh yes. And I'm working constantly myself to accept life being easier and easier. There are days when everything just flows. I never have to think, I'm just doing. I no longer use my brain to define myself, to define other people, to tell me how I look, or any of that crippling stuff. I let my body do all that decision making. My bodily reactions are always precise - but I can only hear my body when my brain is quiet! My body is extremely precise in knowing what's the right thing to do. But it will probably take a whole lifetime of constant effort and education to get to where l can allow my body to run my life all the time. lt's not easy - your brain doesn't want to let go. But the more I can speed that up, the faster the ease in life will come. And I actually have learned I don't like to have to think. I like my brain as a neat little tool that I can pull out whenever I want it.

JEAN: What about the way you relate to people - has that changed? I know you said in the last interview it was hard to be close to people who are not feeling.

ARLAYNE: Everyone I feel close with is "feeling". They are not necessarily in Primal. They know and/or are working on understanding more of what is going on with themselves. They are people attempting to improve their own relationship with themselves.

JEAN: Relationships are easier, then?

ARLAYNE: Oh sure. To back track a bit . . . during the "wipe-out" the more people around the better. As far back as l can remember the more people I had in my life the better off I was, because the more people there are, the more opportunities there are to get something.

So I never had close friendships. I had a Iot of acquaintances. I was happiest when there were a minimum of 40 people at my house when I gave a party. I would never spend more than 30 seconds with any one person - I was just running around full of excitement. It was as though I was getting something from all of them. The excitement of wow! 40 people like me, 40 people accept me.

JEAN: That change?

ARLAYNE: It changed rather suddenly and drastically over a period of about a year from living in a communal house to going to just craving to be alone with nobody in the house. Gradually, l got rid of all the people in my life (and in my house), started excluding friends; I did not talk to anyone anymore. This was in the early part of my involvement with real estate when the only people I talked with for almost a year were the people I worked with. Other than that I never called friends, I turned down invitations. Being with me was enough. And I was so delighted at having the first time alone in my whole life that I just really fed off of it. And I was also aware that having been to one extreme I needed to go to the opposite end. Right now I see close friends, but I wouldn't go to a party with forty people!

JEAN: Are you working on anything for yourself right now?

ARLAYNE: I'm working toward my retirement, and that has nothing to do with age 65. I've run into to many people who've "retired" at age 35! By retirement I mean a person has stopped filling their day with activities that earn money. . . they fill their days with what they love doing most, independent of having money come in as a result of the activity. I'm working towards the point where money will come into me independent of what I'm doing all day. I will then be free to do all those wonderful things that one would love to do that don't produce money.

I know when the time comes there will be a lot of things that I will want to be involved with and I'll probably still be busy fourteen hours a day like I am now. One thing I was once working toward is teaching Yoga in Nursing Homes. I felt that was a very valuable thing to do - it just had no money connected with it. And who knows, maybe I will go back to that. I'm sure whatever it is I do will be involved with people and helping share things that I have learned.

JEAN: Do you have a time frame?

ARLAYNE: I see retirement as being no more that 10 years away - hopefully sooner. I'm not ready to retire tomorrow and that's very clear. I need to learn a lot more and discipline myself a lot more before I'd be able to handle not having to work for money. When money is coming in independent of what you do you have to have a strong direction then that's not connected to money.

Right now, I see a wonderful learning process unfolding. I understand why retirement now would be the worst thing that could happen to me; working towards retirement is like going through school - I know pretty much the lessons I have to learn and what I have to overcome and what I have to prepare for to handle being rich. Having things easy and simple is a lot of hard work because my life has been geared to having things difficult and hard and it takes a tremendous amount of energy to go from what is habit into something new. Having changed a lot of things in my life the next change coming up is easier and the one after that will be even easier. My moments of life being easy are so pleasant that that's the strongest push I have now - to make it easy all the time. I've had a life without ease, without simplicity, and without fun, and that's probably as close as I can come to describing what I want for my life - easy, simple and fun.

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