1. Guilt - Always used to hurt or control.
2. Anger - Anger is especially effective against those unnerved by openly aggressive behavior.
3. Obligation - Often is the form of an unspoken agreement.
4. Withholding - Primary control ploy used in close relationships. Especially withholding sex.
5. Helplessness - Is a way the controller claims they can not do what they need to do.
6. Teasing - Appears loving and affectionate on the surface, but can be a way for the teaser to make an indirect statement.
7. Questions - Can be an attempt to control when they already know the answers.

These are notes are from a session with one of my favorite long time E-Gurus Dick Sutphen. All credit goes to him and you should look him up if you need Zen in your life.

Life, like a trail, as you walk along it will notice there are many places you cant go. Sometimes the reasons you cant go are obvious like off a cliff or through a tree. This is wisdom. 
Fear dissuades you from ever leaving the trail. Those that fear the least are free and forced to the edge by the densely slow moving center. 
The trail provides the illusion of security, because many travel it, it seems to go on forever. It is an illusion because the path was made by many, and no one has walked the length. Those that leave the path with no conviction are forgotten, as no one follows. For it is along the edges we travel to get a taste of the unknown. 
The edge is always expanding as every time we are passed, or pass we walk besides our intended path with another, if for only a moment, those are relationships.
Death is when you find yourself without a vehicle. Nothing is certain, even abandoned paths heal. No two can walk the same path, yet we are never alone. 
Zhuangzi

The Tale of Cook Ding 

Cook Ding was carving an ox carcass for Lord Wenhui. With each touch of his hand, heave of his shoulder, step of his feet, thrust of his knee – whop! whish! – he wielded his knife with a whoosh, and every move was in rhythm. It was as though he were performing the Dance of the Mulberry  Grove or keeping to the beat of the Constant Source music.

“Ah, marvelous!” said Lord Wenhui. “Surely this is the acme of skill!” Cook Ding laid down his knife and replied, “What your servant loves, my lord, is the Dao,  and that is a step beyond skill."

“At the beginning, when I first began carving up oxen, all I could see was the whole carcass.  After three years I could no longer see the carcass whole, and now I meet it with my spirit and don’t  look with my eyes. Perception and understanding cease and spirit moves as it will. I follow the  natural form: slicing the major joints I guide the knife through the big hollows, and by conforming to the inherent contours, no vessels or tendons or tangles of sinews – much less the big bones – block my blade in the least."

“A good cook changes his knife once a year, but this is mere slicing. An ordinary cook  changes his knife once a month, because he hacks. I’ve been using this knife now for nineteen years;  it has carved thousands of oxen, yet the blade is as sharp as one fresh off the grindstone. You see,  there are gaps between these joints, but the blade edge has no thickness. If a knife with no thickness  moves into a gap, then it’s wide as need be and the blade wanders freely with plenty of leeway.  That’s why after nineteen years the blade of my knife is as sharp as one fresh off the grindstone."

“But nevertheless, whenever a tangled knot lies ahead, I spot the challenge and on the alert I  focus my sight and slow down my hand – then I flick the blade with the slightest of moves, and before you know it the carcass has fallen apart like earth crumbling to the ground. I stand with knife  raised and face all four directions in turn, prancing in place with complete satisfaction. Then I wipe off the knife and put it away.”

“How fine!” said Lord Wenhui. “Listening to the words of Cook Ding, I have learned how
to nurture life!”

~ Zhuangzi: The Inner Chapters - 3.2 The Tale of Cook Ding

Download full PDF book courtesy of Indiana State University 
Recently I started to self publish my stuff to social media. I used all the social accounts I already used like Facebook and LinkedIn and even started to use some I never have before like Twitter and Instagram.

Today I am baffled by having to open up all my social media pages and seeing each of my different crowds and their likes or comments.

My Zen started to fade as I realized how much work it would take to interact with all my audiences honestly and with real human interest. I also saw Instagram is plagued with bots so you will get far more likes than views.  If you don't believe me upload a video with #hashtags. You also see ridiculous comments obviously misplaced and making no sense whatsoever, but will undoubtedly have a link to someones website in it.

I had never used Twitter before and found it far more mentally stimulating and have replaced my daily Facebook habit with it completely. There are people playing follow unfollow as well, trying to claw their way to the top of the social peak, but it is easily managed with one scroll through who you follow.

So I am going to add a bit of Zen to my life again.  I am going to reduce the number of social profiles to what I can honestly manage with real human interaction. This will both help me become more honest with my viewers, myself, and in fact provide me more time to be creative without worrying who likes it or not.

I will keep my blog.  I really like Blogger.  You can write whatever you wish (countries may vary), be as creative as you want, and post it without having to force it down someones social windpipe. They can search for it when they want to see it, and it doesn't bother them when they don't.

My new social presence...
+ Blogger (pathozen.com)
+ Twitter (curiously interesting)
+ LinkedIn (Resume)
+ YouTube (Video projects)
+ Google+ (never use it, but it bothers me none, and comes with my Gmail.

I am wasting my time with...
- Instagram (too many bots, hard to manage, must update with phone)
- Facebook (politically engaged, closed and private circles.) I might have kept this, but now somehow I can not post my tweets to it because of a technical glitch that they report but do not fix. Perhaps I will reactivate after awhile, it is not personal ;)
- Buffer (interesting tool for managing all social accounts.  Gets views, but increasingly expensive and trial is now more limited.)

I may make more changes.  On the path of Zen our time engaged in ego driving activities must be identified and checked. It is contradictory to a Zen life to have to much or little ego.  It is to live life honestly as you are. Give real human interaction, unless you want to be famous, create an illusion bubble that will pop.  It is your path. It is your choice.

As for me.. if you must have updates follow me on twitter.  I follow back, and only mute you if you post incessantly or disrupt my Zen. Cheers!








While practicing cutting up videos I thought it would be fun to use the State of the Union speech for practice.  It was a very well written speech.  I watched it thoroughly, I hope you enjoy.


Conspiracy is not the problem. Propaganda is.



Zen Dragon takes a look into the wacky mindset of flat earthers and other conspiracy groups, revealing why so many people fall for this parlor trick. Unfortunately many do not understand what is happening when they watch long propaganda videos.