Troy Reicherter And Ashley James
- Know that it is possible to achieve world peace and it starts with you
- Science, quantum physics and it’s role in the world and people’s lives
- Spiritual and religious freedom while creating a tight-knit community
- Multi-dimension understanding of the universe
Is world peace achievable? If everyone has their own voice and enforcing their opinions on other people then peace will never come. In a world where war is at par, today’s episode can help us further realize why we need to invest in the quality of life, respecting each other’s freedom and most importantly, what we can do to help each other achieve what everyone wants in their life- peace.
[00:00] Ashley James: Hello, True Health seekers and welcome to another exciting episode of Learn True Health podcast. You’re going to need to strap on your seatbelt for this one. It is quite a ride. I have a really great interview for you today. First, I want to make sure that you know about this free docu-series. It’s available this week only. It starts today and for the next 9 days. You are definitely going to want to check it out. It’s called iThrive. John has in the beginning of this docu-series, he is well over a hundred pounds overweight. He has type II diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and he is essentially is getting towards his deathbed. He’s only in his 50’s and he hits a brick wall emotionally and physically realizing that he’s going to be a statistic. He’s probably not going to make it into his 60s. That’s when he deiced to film himself going through his transformation. Now if you suffer from all those things you know how hard it is to turn that around. He decided to put cameras in his face and go to, I believe he consulted 44 holistic health doctors and worked with them and to pull the great information out of them and he followed a program that’s natural and that’s science-based. It’s wonderful are the results that you see. If you go to learntruehealth.com/iThrive. That’s learntruehealth.com/iThrive all one word. You can put your name and email in and then the next video it shows you is him. His before and after. It’s so cool and then, of course, the 9 days, every day they release another episode and you follow his journey and you learn from him. From his struggles and from him as he has his Aha! Moments with this holistic health doctors that showed him how to adjust his diet and lifestyle and how he can get his body back to be a hundred percent healthy and off all medications. That’s right. By the end of the docu-series, he’s no longer diabetic. He no longer had high blood pressure. He no longer has obesity. He no longer has heart disease. It’s all reversible. It’s wonderful to watch. It’s great to learn from. Please go to learntruehealth.com/iThrive. Check it out. That link will also be in the show notes of today’s podcast. Share that link to all your friends. We’ve got to get this information out there so we can help as many people as possible to learn true health. To learn what it feels like to their body to have true health. Excellent. Enjoy today’s interview.
[03:12] Ashley James: Welcome to the Learn True Health Podcast. I’m your host, Ashley James. This is episode 371. Well, here we are again in the garden with Troy Reicherter. He was in episode 138 and more recently in episode 369. We discussed when you first came in the show two years ago in our backyard so we’ll continue the theme of having you out here. It’s such a beautiful day. You discussed a few projects you’re working on. At that time, it was the Seattle peace project. Where you were getting groups of different churches and different people from around the Seattle area to meditate and pray on peace to see if we could make an impact and the crime rate because there has been experiments done that I’ve shown that getting enough people to meditate and pray on peace that it can lower the crime rate. Another thing that you have been passionate about for the last few years is testing the toxicants in your body while you are doing detox methods like sauna, fasting, eating organic and taking different supplements and seeing how many pesticides and different toxicants you can lower in your body by using these methods. We just finished a follow-up interview episode 369. Now we’re going to talk about a book that you’ve published and this is, did you say 26 years in the making?
[04:42] Troy Reicherter: 26 years, yes. Started about the same time I started fasting it was 1993. I was a 23-year-old living in Taiwan. Oh, no this is after 23 but I got to Taiwan when I was 23. Anyway, the same group that introduced me to fasting. Well, they were psychics. A lot of psychic people. They had centers they were building around Taiwan including up in the mountains of central Taiwan and doing meditation and all kinds of purification methods. Their goal was to bring about world peace through a kind of a new religion exactly but just an understanding of all the different religions in context with one another so that you see it as one giant mosaic. When I was with them, I started to find a lot of answers to question that I had when I get to Taiwan, which led me later to study Chinese medicine. After understanding how these things work how chi and in and yang how they really work and what they really are. It led me to start writing it was almost like automatic writing. Where you just feel like my hand just wants to write. I wasn’t even hardly thinking of what I was writing I just started cranking at everything that I had written. Another thing that happened really soon on was after listening to them talk and talk about things that they saw and people’s auras and different colors and different symbols that were important, I started to I just went back and started re-reading the new testament. So all of these notes that I took, they turn into a paper and then I just felt the need to write another one and another one. I wrote one about science. One about Jesus. It just went from there. Then I needed to connect these papers together. It provided an answer to a question that I’ve been asking since I was a kid. How do we get world peace? How do we look at the world in a way that makes sense so that we don’t have to fight anymore? So that we could have a sustainable way of life, environmentally sustainable, peaceful. Do that so there’s no more wars with people looking at each other from different religions saying, “I don’t understand how you fit into this picture. I can understand my religion but I don’t understand yours and I don’t respect you and we need to have a war about it to see who wins and who loses.” Since having been studied history I knew that religion was one of the main forces pushing wars that seem to be a crucial part of the puzzle is to figure out how what is it the nature of reality at least to the point where we can agree on some common ground. Agree to disagree about certain things and then agree to agree about other things so we can be close to each other but still without surrendering our own beliefs. Then have world peace. I’ve been thinking about these questions for a long time. What will that look like? Then reverse engineer if you just think realistically about what we have to change for saving the environment? What we have to change to end the culture of warfare? What we have to do to be close enough to our neighbors of different faiths and ethnicities that we can end conflict. What does that look like? How do we do that? Where do we begin? I’ve been wrestling with those problems those questions for my whole life. The people that I met in Taiwan didn’t have all the answers but they had a lot of answers and they started me writing what turned into this book 26 years ago. That’s what I’ve talked about. The book is called Utopia found: A Blueprint for Spiritual Renaissance and World Peace. That’s exactly what it is. It’s unlike any book ever written. I think. It’s a little bit like a cartolase, a new earth but it is a blueprint for spiritual renaissance and world peace because it’s a plan. It’s a path of logic and then it reaches a point to where you can’t prove everything. We go beyond logic you might say go into the spiritual realm a little bit and yet we can observe similarities from around the world to come up with the points of agreement that we need to make communities of the future that will work for all the different parameters I just mentioned. Yes, so that’s what it is. I’ve been doing other things in the past 26 years besides just sitting in the room writing this book. I’ve been going to school, acupuncturist, teacher, couple of master’s degrees in Chinese medicine education but that has been, I consider my magnum opus really. Whatever else I do in my life that proving we can detoxify our bodies of cancer-causing chemicals or what not to belittle any of that but in my own mind. I think that this book is like a trunk of the tree and all the other things are branches of that trunk.
[10:20] Ashley James: Take us back to where you were in Taiwan. How long did you lived there? Do you speak Taiwanese?
[10:25] Troy Reicherter: Mandarin Chinese, I speak. My wife is from Taiwan and I didn’t really take the time to learn the dialect because it’s only when you’re there that you’ll use it. Sometimes I’d like to not understand what they’re saying I just want to tune it out. I was in Taiwan for about 5 years all in all. I’ve gone back to visit periodically. It was from 1991 until I left at the end of 1996 and I came back to the States a couple of times in that time period. I stayed in Mainland China for a period learning Chinese medicine. Taiwan is a very unique because they still use the full from Chinese characters and they never underwent the Cultural Revolution that they did in mainland china. You’d find a lot of very interesting cultural relics. It’s more like ancient china than anywhere else in the world. I would say. There’s nothing quite like it. Every street you go down is just temples. Like crazy. Temples of all different religions and mixes between traditional Chinese, folk religion and Buddhism and Taoism and Confucianism. You find a lot of people there that are really into spirituality. A lot of psychics too. A lot of people whom I’ve know had the same experiences in Taiwan. They’ll meet someone who’ll tell them something about the future that comes true. It happens all the time. You may have to go out of your way to look for it but it’s an amazing place. I was lucky enough to meet some really good teachers who I’m still in contact with. Although the group is no longer existing as it used to be. I think at the moment, they want their privacy. That’s where the answer started to come for me. My parents were a product of the ’60s. They started to question organized religion soon after they got married. By the time, I was born in 1968, they didn’t go to church. They didn’t believe. I was raised there’s just no mention of religion in our house. On my own growing up in American culture. I just got noticing what was in TV. Noticing what’s in the wind and the way people started to celebrate certain things like Easter and Christmas. I started to say, “Who’s this guy Jesus? What’s He all about?” My parents never talked about Christ and all. I went back and read the bible myself and actually joined a couple of churches in Sacramento area when I was a teenager. I went through the whole admission process and was baptized. Believed very strongly on it. Then when I became older then I started to question like, “Well, what about the seventh day Adventist? What do they have to say?” They have a pretty good argument. “What about this? What about that?” Eventually, when I was in college I had a lot of questions and I reached the point where I wasn’t so sure about my faith. Then as I got closer to the time I went to Taiwan I started to meet more and more people who are telling me things that I couldn’t accept but I really respected the person. It was mostly about reincarnation and miracles. They would tell me about just over and over that reincarnation is a fact. I couldn’t accept it. I didn’t believe it. I thought it was ridiculous and yet it was very ironic because those were the people who I respected the most and yet I doubted what they’re telling me. People were talking professors at Sacramento State University, for example, we’re talking about Indian religion, Hinduism, meditation. They talked about miracles that people could perform if they done enough spiritual practice. I started to open my mind to that possibility as well. So then when I went to Taiwan, that was kind of the frame of mind I was in. I was a history student at that point and had all these questions about how does that world really work? Are these things real? Are they not real? Can physics and chemistry explain everything or not? That was a crucial question to me because if they could, then that meant that there’s no afterlife, there’s no spirit. All those things that people in the spiritual realm are telling us. They can’t be true. Which isn’t. I not to say if those things are true the we can’t use science anymore, of course, we can use both. I really had a lot of questions about the fundamental nature of reality and I was trying to answer the question of how are we going to live in the future with this large population dwindling resources, pollution, wars, global warming. All that things that are facing us. What are we going to do? Seriously. Not just what am I going to do? How am I going to get by but we as a species going to do? We better do fast or we’re in big trouble as we can see. That was my guiding motivation the entire time. My girlfriend who’s now my wife at that time she was my girlfriend. I decided I was going to study Chi Gong. Energy control basically. Controlling your chi. She happen to have a person at their work who that’s just one of those things that were my karma matched the karma of the situation, it was like a lock and a key. She from some person she had never met before just got a note saying, “Why don’t you take your boyfriend to this place.” so I went. She said two things I thought were irresistible. One is, “These people are psychic and they know why you came before you come there. They know you’re coming. They’ll expect you and secondly, they won’t charge you any money.” I couldn’t say no to that. Sure enough, they said, “Didn’t I tell you there’s this foreigner who going to come down here.” Anyway, I joined the group and learned a lot from them. All those things from my earlier experience with the new testament, Jesus came to the fore because half of what they’re talking about was Jesus. And they weren’t Christian. They would describe his energy. They would say I can feel it right now. If you get to the stage where I’m at you can just feel it. You call out. You sense out that vibration, you can sense his energy. He’s omnipresent. He’s everywhere. I thought that was really interesting. It caused me to go back and read the new testament over and over and over. I started to take notes. It was funny because the things that I was hearing from my teachers in Taiwan were exactly the same things that Jesus Christ was saying 2,000 years ago in Israel. I started to look at the whole thing in new way. That becomes one of the components of the book. The book is laid out in a specific order. It’s a like a path you have to go follow to get to the end with the answer you might say or the pieces of the puzzle laid out for you to put together. Or you can think about it like a rubik cube. I got into an interesting debate with a science-minded friend of mine because he was saying that I was a critical of science in the first part of my book. He say, “Why did you even start talking about science?” it’s not the biggest problem we have. It’s not like science does do anything accusing a problem it’s in and on itself. I had to rewrite the beginning of the book to explain a little bit better that it’s like solving a rubik cube. I’m not good at rubik cubes but I see that there’s a set operation. A series of event of operations that you have to do. You have to begin with number 1 then go to number 2. So you can’t move certain colors to where you want them to be unless you do that first initial twist. It’s knowing when to do that is part of the key. The book starts out talking about science. There’s five sections of the book and the first part is science and the search for truth in the west. The way most people think is there’s this assumption that science and technology are leading to progress and that progress is going to make things better and solve our problems. In that first section, I go back through the history of the origin of science. Talk about the Greek philosophers briefly and how science started from a search of moral truth. In the beginnings, Socrates was trying to look for the right way for people to live. He likened it to a cobbler making a shoe he said, “If you don’t know what a shoe is, how can you know the right art to make a good shoe.” So we have to know ourselves. We have to know our spirits. And so he said the famous line “Know thy self.” Socrates was talking about things like this and he was coming after a long line of pre-Socratic philosophers who are always looking for the nature of reality. Then along comes Plato. Plato didn’t exactly say that the world as it exists is real. He says that we should study the world through abstractions and we should use things like geometry. We should use the Socratic method of question and answers but then we should also use things like geometry because geometry forces us to rise above the mundane and go to something that can be measured. We’re talking about number and abstractions like lines and points. We’re no longer talking about the real world which may for all we know be an illusion. So it’s very interesting that how that turns to Aristotle coming along and say, “Let’s not worry about the question if it’s an illusion or not. Let’s just assume it’s real and measure it and just be empirical about it.“ I can see this, I can taste this, I can measure this.” and don’t make any assumptions and just stick with the fact. This is the origin of science basically. Following on Thales and his ideas that things can be explained. Aristotle says, “Stop worrying about the world being an illusion. Stop worrying about some higher levels of consciousness that may make this seem like an illusion. Let’s just stick with the facts.” This is what later on in the renaissance and the enlightenment turns into science. It’s getting back to Aristotle’s philosophy. The first section of my book is talking about how this has led to amazing advances that we can all see but it has basically left behind the original quest of how people live. Science can never really answer all the questions that we have. As Douglas Hoff Stetter said in his book because in order to do that you’d have to have a system that could make reference to itself. When a system becomes so big that it can have self-reference it can no longer be objective. There’s a trap there of logic. That we imagine that we’re going to go figure out everything there is to know through science somehow but it can’t. It is not necessarily leading us to a better world because every time we get a new technological invention like cellphones for example. Well, give me an hour and I could tell you about a lot of things cellphones are doing even just in the classroom that are very, very bad. Not to mention all the environmental effects and everything else. So the assumption that we’re making about science. That science and technology are leading us to a better world in and of themselves is not true. It could but the question is do we have the wisdom to use it properly? Because it’s really a tool. Just like a knife, a knife can be used to do great things like cut up these strips we’re eating here or it can be used to commit mayhem, right? It’s all in the way you use the tool. That comes down to something you can’t really measure we call wisdom. You can have the greatest scientific minds in the world and they can be employed to make weapons of mass destructions, or work for the Nazis or for Stalin or for Kim Jung-un. It doesn’t matter how smart they have or how much technology they have if their wisdom, if they’re building something that shouldn’t be built in the first place then there’s a problem. So that what I point out in the first section we shouldn’t be making this assumption that science and technology are solving our problems by themselves they could if we employ them the right way. That comes down to a question of wisdom and lifestyle. The second section of the book is – feel free to ask a question anytime you want there.
[24:10] Ashley James: Oh no, this is great. I’m enjoying the ride. I like it.
[24:17] Troy Reicherter: The second section is called towards a multi-dimension understanding of the universe. What I realized in my experiences in Taiwan and elsewhere is that there are things going on that can never be explained by chemistry and physics. There are those who believe that and there are those who don’t. The ones who don’t are in the realm of science. They don’t usually talk to the people that don’t believe that and the people who don’t believe that usually don’t talk to people that do believe that. I’m trying to bring the two sides together and make both sides understand what’s really going on and be willing to see the other’s point of view. Scientists would take this an attack may be to their position but it isn’t. It just fine-tuning our understanding of what’s really going on so we could use this tool of science and technology more rationally because right now we’re assuming things that aren’t true. When I had a physiology class before it thought it was really interesting in the opening few pages of a book they said, “There’s two ways of looking at the world. There’s the mechanist view and the animist view. Animist view assumes that there’s things like spirit, energy and intangible things out there that have something to do with the way the world really works. They pointed out really clearly, this book doesn’t believe that. This book about physiology believes that humans are biological machines. There is no spirit, there is none of this just forgot about all the idea, romantic idea. There’s anything else going on expect just anything that can be explained by chemistry and physics any thought you have is just synapses in your brain, chemicals. Something like that, something that can be expressed in some kind of chemical and physical formula. That’s called the mechanist theory. It’s that everything is mechanical. If you really believe that as most scientists do right now it would seem and I just heard someone he wrote a book about consciousness [00:26 Inaudible] just in the last year he was basically saying that as time goes by he thinks more and more that he’s not making any decision. If someone asks him where he wants to go that night, if he thinks of what he wants to do, everything that he’s doing is predetermined by everything else that happened up to that point. There is no free will. That’s kind of where you end up if you believe that. Through my experience, I’ve just been collecting. For the last 30 years, just been collecting anything that disproves that because I just saw more and more evidence as time went along that these things aren’t true. Some for the evidence is like, like the evidence that I know that my teachers in Taiwan were psychic. I can’t really prove that to you. I could tell you some stories and anecdotes and you could go through and say, “Well, that doesn’t really prove anything.” No, it wasn’t in a clinical setting but I know for myself and so I have been looking at those things that were so overwhelmingly persuasive those pieces of evidence that I can include them or else things that were a result of an actual study where there’s really no question about it. That’s the second section of my book. Toward a multidimensional understanding of the universe. I just present all the evidence that falsifies the mechanist theory because this mechanist theory doesn’t say that most phenomenon can be explained by chemistry and physics, they say all phenomenon, everything. All phenomenon the entire observable universe, everything that exists can be explained through chemistry and physics and I’m saying no, can’t. They’re wonderful chemistry and physics. I was collecting things from the news, I was collecting things from my own research and I started out being the weakest part of the book but over time it basically becomes the strongest point because I have so many cool things that I go through. I think the first one is about near-death experiences. I won’t go through all of them you can read them on the book but near-death experiences have been researched by a number of researchers and everyone who’s looked into it has found this amazing degree of correspondence between what people say they saw happening when they were clinically dead. According to the mechanist theory, their brains couldn’t be working and yet they saw things, heard things. Even people who have been born blind could describe the colors of things. How could they do that? This is a so pretty impressive section with several researchers who were very skeptical of it and they look into it they came away complete believers because they couldn’t explain that they discovered. There was a big death study done, a dutch study [Inaudible 29:19] in 2001, I believe. The researchers said in the end, “There’s no physical explanation for near-death experiences and scientists may re-think their theories on the nature of human consciousness.” Was their conclusion. That was 18 years ago and yet I don’t think there has been a lot rethinking on the nature of human consciousness since then. A lot of these conclusions are put out there and they’re not acted upon and the people like me collect them but the scientific community and the world at large needs to face the facts that this research has been done. There’s a reason to believe these things. Also, I found a lot of evidence about reincarnation which I came to believe in because of my own experiences but I found a number of other examples and some of them by researchers who described things that they could not possibly have known about and which were looked into. Including a case of a woman who claimed to have been killed in medieval England. She said she was Jewish and she was killed in this church, in the crypt of the church. The researchers looking into it and said, “Well, Okay. It could have to be this church based in what she said the problem is there was no crypt in the church.” A little later on some workman were doing some renovation they found actually there was a crypt that they didn’t know about underneath the church. I have a score of these kinds of things collected in my book basically proving as well as we can prove that people are able to say things in certain cases that they couldn’t possibly have known about previous lives. That prove to be true when you investigate it. There’s a couple of instances I found Dr. Ian Stevenson looked into about people who began speaking a language they had never learned. There was one where a Swedish woman started speaking German and a woman in India she took on the personality of a Bengali woman and suddenly started to read, write and speak Bengali. Language shed never studied. In the other case, the woman from Sweden she started speaking German and then she basically became the other person. Here is another one, in Hungary, there was a 15-year-old girl who suddenly started speaking Spanish and then she lost the ability to even read or understand Hungarian. There may be other things involved there like I don’t know phony’s word possession I’ll just call it unlearned language ability. Someone almost starts speaking a language that they never learned. Researchers investigators looked into his case they can find no explanation for it. Yes, this happened in 1933 but you know, people weren’t stupid then. They were able to do investigations. Sometimes we think before they had cellphones nobody could think. There’s a number of other things in the book including the effectiveness of traditional Chinese medicine including pulse diagnosis. Having gone through the curriculum for traditional Chinese medicine I have a number of accounts of people that I met. They’re miracle curers for things. Like in one case, there was a doctor at ACTCM where I went to school in San Francisco. She had a patient who was told he had to remove part of his colon because he had Crohn’s disease and there was no cure but after a year of acupuncture, he was completely well. Cases of people told they would never walk again, walking. People who couldn’t hear, hearing again. There was a famous study from the journal of the American Association where 260 pregnant women had breached presentation where the fetus was in a head-up position not ready to go into the birth canal. They randomly divided the women and one group just got moxibustion which is applying a heated herb. They light it on fire kind of like a big cigar to an accu-point in a little toe which is supposed to in Chinese medicine theory make the fetus go into the proper position. Sounds crazy, right? But in the controlled group, there were only 81 women who had a cephalic presentation at birth but 98 women from the moxibustion group did. The researchers said, “We cannot foreknow physical explanations for these results we can only comment that the mechanism of action is not clearer and more investigation is warranted.”
[33:58] Ashley James: When I was pregnant, 32 weeks I was breached it’s kind of normal still safe but definitely wanted to turn the baby. My midwife has sent me to an OBGYN who I thought for sure she’s going to be allopathic against good natural medicine. I nearly fell off the table she said, “I want you to go see an acupuncturist because your baby is breached.” and she said, “Yes, there’s a study. As OBGYNs would be a fool not to believe in it because they’ve shown most cases than not without any side effects reverse the breach naturally with acupuncture.” So I went and it was like aliens. My baby’s head pushed up and I could see him turning. He turned half the way during the one-hour session on the table with the moxi and the acupuncture points and then he turned the rest of the way in the next 24 hours. 24 hours after getting one acupuncture session my baby was ready basically presenting with his head down ready to be born at 40 weeks. He came out when he was already but it was perfect. It was brilliant. I totally believe in acupuncture.
[35:22] Troy Reicherter: I heard people laughing in the radio saying I’m sitting here holding this burning in my little toe and this was supposed to do something? Because it was in dama, people believed it. I don’t know if they’re still giving that recommendation but it appears to work. How can we explain such a thing? Chinese pulse diagnosis it doesn’t make any logical sense and yet I’ve seen again and again that it works so well that Brian Laforcia at a seminar I attended explained how he wants just by doing pulse diagnosis he was able to tell that a mitral valve of a woman’s heart had a problem. Or that someone else was developing a tumor on a particular lobe of their liver. There was one person who just by pulse diagnosis alone Dr. Leon Hammer was able to say, “You are locked in an attic when you are young.” and the person said, “Yes. How did you know?” He could tell from the pulse. Yet some people would say like author Liane Saytel who wrote a book about traditional Chinese medicine he wrote pulse diagnosis shows even though this is about traditional Chinese medicine he says, “Pulse diagnosis shows a disregard for modern knowledge about the structure and function of the human body.” See that is the mainstream attitude is that it can’t possibly work. This is ridiculous and yet it works. So there’s Chinese medicine which I have many examples then extrasensory perception many studies done, many cases of people knowing things they couldn’t know, predicting things they couldn’t predict. Experiments where Dean Radin calculated if you put all these ESP experiments together for a card prediction they were done between 1882 and 1939. You wind up with the odds against them those results being a billion trillion to one. It’s just fantastic remote viewing exercises and the stories there by Dr. Russel Targ describing how he and a psychic Pat Price were able to discover where the getaway car for Patty Hearst was put. He was describes how they walked into the Brooklyn police department and he just Pat Price said, show me your book of mugshots and flipped through it and said, that’s the guy who kidnapped Patty Hearst, Donald Defreeze. He had nothing to do with the case. So, again and again, we find all these amazing examples of the extrasensory perception isn’t just a myth but then it’s true. knowledge of future events many, many times people have made predictions which I’ve been collecting that we couldn’t explain another way except to say that somehow they could really see the future. Nostradamus I have quite a number of Nostradamus quotes that are actually quite impressive. I could read a little bit of it but you really need to get into the book to get in the heart of it. So many things. Nostradamus wrote in century 1 quatrain 25 he refers to Pasteur. He says the last thing will be discovered – Pasteur also means it comes from the word pasture. So some people have said maybe he was just talking about a field. He says Pasteur will be celebrated as a demi-god. A god-like figure and the last thing will be discovered. Then Pasteur shows the world that microscopic organisms were the cause of disease which seems to have been understood by Egyptians and even by pre-historic people because they were eating things off the trees that had anti-biotics in them. There’s one example. There’s quite a few of them. Nostradamus seems to have predicted the rise of Hitler. He says there will be a second anti-Christ. The first one he says was Napoleon. The second one he says is Hifter which is close to the spelling for Hitler. It’s also another name for the Danube river near which where Hitler was born and raised. He says he’ll be born of poor people and by his tongue will seduce many. He mentions what he translates as a crooked cross of iron in connection with the pontific sending his power to the Danube. Hitler, of course, have the swastika. His actions were condoned by Pope Pious the 12th. On and on about Nostradamus. I know Nostradamus is very controversial. A lot of people have said that you can’t prove, because you can’t prove everything then there’s no point at looking at those ones that seem to correct. The final one I had was century 1 quatrain 70 Nostradamus wrote that wars in Persia would not cease. Too much trust or faith will betray the monarch and the end commences in France. This seems come to pass when the Americans stalled Shah of Iran who’s overthrown on 1979. Too much faith could refer to the shah having too much faith in the US ability to stop the uprising and the strong fundamentalist religious belief of the revolutionaries. He says that the end commences in France. Well the shah, the end of the shah did commence in France because was in Paris [Inaudible 40:51] until the revolution was over. There’s many things if you read carefully about Nostradamus that he talked about the fleet traveling underwater, he talked about people traveling by air, he describes what sound like missiles, a dart from the sky. He says the world will get smaller. There’ll be peace for a long time, people would travel safely over land sea and air. Then he says wars will start again. Very, very interesting stuff. Telsomatics is where one person can suddenly feel what someone else is feeling. There’s a few cases of that recorded very carefully.
[41:27] Ashley James: I was just talking the other day to a naturopath who I’m actually interviewing tomorrow about that. Last week I’m was talking to him about that. I called my mom up when I was about 19. She was in Florida with my dad that time and I was in Toronto going through massage therapy college. I was like I have this pain and I thought I had thrown out a rib because I had pain radiating from the front of my liver to the back of my liver. My mom goes, I can’t remember which one of us told the other one first but, my mom said I have this pain I just did yoga class and I had this pain so we both thought we threw out the same rib the same day. It turns out she went to the chiropractor to fix the said rib. That chiropractor said I want to do an ultrasound I guess that chiropractor had an ultrasound machine for some reason. That night she flew back to Canada to Ottawa and was in an MRI machine that night. That’s when she found out she had stage 4 liver cancer. The pain she was feeling was her liver end of life liver cancer and I was feeling it. I called her to tell her I felt the same pain. I didn’t injure my back, I was feeling her pain. The same pain she was feeling. To talk about that and it was long distance she was in Florida I was in Toronto. I was going through college. To have that same pain I wouldn’t say fake but mine was energetic there was no psychological explanation for mine. Hers was real. Hers was physical.
[43:08] Troy Reicherter: It’s amazing isn’t it if we start comparing our stories and we could say, “Oh that’s just this, that’s just that.” We start to look at the sheer volume of these things and usually, we keep it all to ourselves but every now and then it gets documented and then we can compare. So just to summarize there’s other things in here like dowsing examples, magnetic field alteration, effects of meditation the unexplained reason of why people have religious faith seem to be more healthy, powers of healing that people have demonstrated over time, distance healing. Well, there’s the whole idea of disempowered spirits or what we call ghosts. I have many many examples of this kind of ting even one of my own. With my grandmother at my parent’s house where myself and others experienced the music box started playing by itself, we’d hear footsteps when there was no one there. It just so happens that one of my teachers from Taiwan the female teacher who I was halluting to earlier she was visiting in the year 2000. It was really strange because my father was going through this period were for a couple of years there he thought he was going to die. His energy level had dropped to zero. He’d been to see all the doctors no could explain it. My grandmother had passed away in the house in 1995. Well, my teacher spent the night there. The next day she at the end of the day she says, “Can I have some wine. Like what do you need the wine for you don’t drink?” She says, “I need to drink something so I can sleep.” I said, “Why?” then she says, “Well, I guess I have to tell you. There’s this woman downstairs.” I said “There’s no woman downstairs.” she says, “No, there is. There’s an old woman walking around with a walker. She got a pink sweatshirt on and she doesn’t have any hair. It’s your grandma’s ghost basically.” She’s in the house she hasn’t left. She can’t bring herself to leave the family. She said that my mother’s spirit was pointing at this thing on the wall, my teacher doesn’t know any English at all. Yes and no. That’s about it but it was a tapestry. My grandmother had woven it and it said to the tapestry “Reach out as far as you can and God will reach down the rest of the way” she says that all night long when the spirit starts to realize that she could see her. She wouldn’t leave her alone. She’s trying to get attention. She kept pointing in the tapestry. My teacher said it sounded like “Samy. Samy.” which I can only guess “Save me. Save me.” Because she didn’t know where she was and what was going on. It was kind of like the sixth sense. My teacher said, “Look, we need to talk to the spirit. Let’s all get together and my grandmother you need to go tell dad when he’s asleep communicate in his dream, go to him tell him you need to leave. We told her she had passed away, it wasn’t that we were ignoring her it was because she was dead. She needs to leave the house because she was sucking all the energy out of the living in the house and it was affecting my dad.” So we did that and then next time I talked to my dad he was fine after like two years having such low energy that he really thought he was at death’s door. He was fine. I’ve talked to other people who had the same exact experience about just the idea of being in a house with a spirit takes all your energy out of you. It all seems to correspond.
[46:30] Ashley James: Going back to what you said about having a connection with the people in your past. A listener of the show who became a client of mine had an experience where and I’m saying hi to her. I won’t mention her name but, hello. She was born and raised in the United States doesn’t know another languages. She was I think this happened in Ireland. She was walking around and a man behind her said something cheeky about I guess her butt or her breast or something and she wiped around and in Gaelic replied to him and everyone else all of the people that are with her, “What did you say?” she was, “What do you mean?” She knew what she’d said and she didn’t know Gaelic. She’s like, “what’s going on,?” she had that every instant like she understood what she said, in Gaelic, she spoke he was whispering to his friend about how good looking she was and she wiped around and kind of told him off and it was all in Gaelic. She’s like “what’s going on?” Then there was another time when she was driving around, she’s never been to Ireland but her grandmother was from there. Who had since passed. They were completely lost no GPS and she knew exactly how to navigate. She knew all the streets, turn left turn right, she knew everything. It turned out the whole area which felt very familiar to her was where her grandmother was born and raised. Little events happen to her like that that made her feel like her grandmother was with her. She was somehow connected to her spirit. But to be able to talk in Gaelic and understand it. It doesn’t happen to her all the time but to have that experience of knowing with no scientific explanation.
[48:27] Troy Reicherter: Yes, it is amazing. If only we could compare note wed find out a lot more. Although you could always say it’s just an anecdote but so many anecdotes put together it has force. There another thing about the effects of consciousness. There’s this thing called the global consciousness project. They’ve been doing for some time now. Where they’ve got this random event generators when something global catastrophe happens they find that they tend to what they consider the negative. It’s like an electronic coin flip but they’re doing thousands of time every second at centers all around the world and they’re recording and you’d expect them to be at a certain bell curve but they’re not. Overtime when something good happens like a whole bunch of people got together and pray, New Year ’s Day, interfaith events. You get things going more to the positive side. The results basically up until to 2015, it started in 1998 and so up until 2015 they calculated these results that they got as being about one a trillion. Less than one in a trillion.
[49:33] Ashley James: So you’re saying that the chances of every time a large group of people gets together and does something very positive that it, for example, affects the crime rate in the area, right? So you’re saying that if there’s just no odds that could possibly explain why obviously there’s something there.
[49:53] Troy Reicherter: Science, the idea’s that everything can be quantified. It’s very hard to do with social sciences like crime rates but they try. They try as best as they can. Like in that Washington DC study in ‘93 that I was trying sort of replicate here in Seattle having people pray for peace. Dr. Dean Radin has done some amazing work in he’s found that just having people basically focus on a laser light inside a closed box. They can change whether the light is a particle or a wave. So when you’re not observing things it’s a wave then when you start to observe it, it’s a particle but this observation in question is doesn’t from a distance. They don’t even have to be even in the same room as the box. People are doing this online in his website where they just focus for a few seconds and then they press the button as they’re focusing and he measures is it a particle more often than it’s a wave. The answer is yes. People are affecting it with their consciousness. He’s found basically he describes this as a sigma effect of between 4 and 8. Which is so great that there is really no possibility of this being due to chance. There’s a lot of experiences like this done like Princeton engineering, anomalies research program and other places where we definitely showed that consciousness has an effect which is not something we can explain with chemistry and physics. Homeopathy was studied and found to be effective in 81 out of 105 trials in Glasgow by Dr. David Riley. Then there’s getting back to epigenetic effects. Jock Benveniste, if I’m pronouncing his name right. This is in the book The Field by the way by McTaggart, very good book. She cites that the scientist in France found that you could take these antibodies and dilute them like a homeopaths would dilute their active substance. Diluted down to the point where there’s basically not a single antibody left in the vial but the water will still produce a response from immune cells. At a certain point, the response after the 9th dilution, the response gets stronger the more it’s diluted. Then in 1988, they published this with this big editor’s caveat saying that “There is no physical basis for such an activity and although he was discredited by a bunch of quack busters, Professor Madeleine Ennis of Queen’s University in Belfast headed a large pan European study which showed that it completely validated his results. Except that was not trumpeted as much as the fact that this is a fake, this is a hoax and then they left it at that. Nature magazine never printed a retraction or the later research. Although it’s been shown that this is really happening. One thing I find really interesting is in 2013 at Emory University in Atlanta, they had a mouse where they conditioned him to dislike the smell of acetaphino smells like orange blossom and artificial cherries by giving him a shock after smelling this odor. The did basically test-tube babies for the 2nd generation and the third generation. They’ve never even met. The kids never even met their father, grandfather and then they check the mice and they also had that trait. This is not a genetic trait. The question is how did they get passed along? How is it that 2 generations down the road they’re afraid of the smell he was afraid of? No one can explain this. There’s a lot of amazing stuff going on. What scientists generally say when they don’t want to open their mind to this possibility that the mechanist theory doesn’t explain everything. They’ll say, “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence and we’re still waiting for more evidence.” As I say in here if you really take a look at what we know now and have known for a long time abut physics. Quantum mechanics cannot be explained by anybody yet we know it’s true. If you go back to the arguments between Einstein and Niels Bohr basically what they’d covered is consciousness is forming the universe. When you’re not looking at the moon, the moon isn’t really there. That drove Einstein crazy. He says, “I like to think it’s there when I’m not looking at it.” Right? Because if we are in a mechanical universe then everything is just running on its own mechanically. But what we found is our consciousness is making things happen. There was a consciousness exercise from the body of this section I didn’t mention also where fascinating I thought they had random sounds that were generated on a tape or some kind of a recording device. It would make a sound completely random. Either on the right or left headphone of a listener for the next day to listen to. This is thing is generated completely randomly and if a person flipped a coin that morning as to whether they wanted to hear more on the right or left. In the morning after the recording has been made, they did studies and they found that the person sits there and focuses “I want to hear more on the right or the left” based on the random flipping of the coin the day after the recording was made. They’re actually influencing what happened the day before because they can actually either make the sound go more to the right or go to the left. That’s just numbers so they could look very clearly at the statistics and say, “What’s the possibility of this happening?” It is significant. We can’t change things from the past as long as no one’s seen it yet. The whole uncertain difference, right?
[55:40] Ashley James: It’s like when I hold on to my lottery ticket and I didn’t check the numbers that night. I’m like, I held it before I’m like, “Schrödinger’s lottery ticket.”
[55:49] Troy Reicherter: Schrödinger’s Cat. Yes, exactly. In the case of a cat, I don’t think it’s going to work because a cat is a conscious entity but if it’s a card from a deck and you flipped it over without looking and the next, “I want it to be queen. I want it to be a queen.” You’ll have more of a chance of it being a queen even though it’s already been flipped.
[56:05] Ashley James: The question is do we know somehow know that it is a queen or is the quantum physics it isn’t a queen until you flipped it over and it’s observed?
[56:16] Troy Reicherter: That’s true. Yes. Which came first? Is it the chicken or the egg? Quantum physics, light can travel through two slits and strike a surface to form an interference pattern. So it’s either a particle or it’s a wave. Its usually a wave but when you look at it, it become a particle again. It’s a totally different pattern. That’s called the wave particle duality of light and no one can really explain that. How it can go back and forth from one to the other. When we look at all this, we’re finding that It has huge effects on all kinds of things. Like in biology they’ve discovered that there is a particle called exyton. Its energized by a photon of sunlight and then it seeks the enters reaction center in the leaf. It’s spread out as wave but then when it strikes the nearest center that collects that energy then it becomes a particle at that point. It’ll be like one of us looking for the nearest gas station we become a wave and go on all directions at then same time then when part of that wave finds a gas station you appear at that point. That’s basically what leaves have been doing since the beginning of time and we haven’t known it. Things can’t be in two places at once.
[57:28] Ashley James: I really like the movie about the book “Do we know?” I’ve talked about it in the podcast before. I highly recommend everyone watch that wan watch it twice. When I first watched it I was bawling my eyes out at the end and I got it and I immediately hit play again. It was back when DVDs. This was like 2004-2005 and I just immediately hit play again. Stay until two in the morning I had to watch it twice. I got it. It hit me. It really did. This how much control we have over shifting our reality. At that time, I was in Canada. I really wanted to go to the States and study NLP. It was going to cost a lot of money and I had no options for making that happen but after watching it, it hit me that I can change it. I know so many people go they put up a brick wall and go, “Oh, I can’t do this because I’m out of money or I can’t do it because I’m not skinny enough. I can’t do this because I don’t have a car. I can’t do this because I don’t have this or I can’t do that because I don’t have kids or I do have kids.” Whatever. Just people making a reason if it’s like that mechanical view of the world. “Well, I need this for this so I guess I can’t do it.” Then they just stop. They stop exploring how to create the life they want. After watching that movie with the book Do We Know. I went “I can change even though there’s no possibility right now.” There’s no logical explanation for me being able to raise this money. And I went into the “I don’t need to know how am I going to do it. I just need to know this is the sole thing I’m focusing on so I going to get this done.” In days, I had the money. It was like $25,000. Within days, I had the money. It’s a matter of shifting consciousness first. That’s where if you want to create if you shift your consciousness first. It was that exactly what you’re talking about that helped me to realize that the reason why I wasn’t creating what I wanted in my life was because I believed that I couldn’t. It was a really big wake up. So yes, I love what you’re saying.
[59:49] Troy Reicherter: Some other thing about quantum mechanics is that a particle go towards another particle and then instantly appear on the other side of it, it’s called quantum tunneling. No one could explain this. When two sub-atomic particles became linked close together, no matter how far apart they are after that, one particle instantaneously affect the other particle. This is called quantum entanglement. Two particles can be on opposite sides of the universe and they will instantaneously faster than light be going the exact same things at the exact same time. They remain twins forever. No one can explain this. And when you think about the fact that the whole universe came from the big bang. This infinitely small thing you realize at some level everything’s is quantum entanglement with everything else because we were all in that little microscopic thing. To freak out at the thought of telsomatics or ESP or clairvoyance or me being able to communicate mind to mind with you, it’s not that far. If you remember of course, again, that consciousness is the things creating all of these. Even as physicists are saying, again, the observer effect light behaving as a wave when it is not observed as a shower of particles when it is observed blow people away. Einstein didn’t like that at all. Max Planck the physicist wrote, “I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness.” That was over a hundred years ago. Consciousness is different from everything else in the universe. It’s not just chemical reactions in our brains. It’s unquantifiable, inexplicable thing. It’s the foundation of all reality. Physicist Werner Heisenberg wrote, “The atoms of elementary particle themselves are not real they from a world or potentialities or possibilities rather than one of things or fact.” We’re all talking about finding a physical explanation for something that scientist have said doesn’t exists. There is no such things as physical stuff basically. What they’re doing is kind of absurd. Einstein didn’t like this idea at first. He fought against it in 1935 he co-wrote a paper criticizing this idea of quantum entanglement saying it’s spooky action at a distance. Later he was forced to admit that it worked. Actually, I guess it was later that it was proven. In 1968, John bell the physicist he found a way to test quantum entanglement and by 1982 it had been absolutely proven that it was true. Einstein did change his way of thinking. By 1954, he said, “I must confess I was unable to find an explanation for the atomist character of nature. One must find a way to avoid the space-time continuum altogether. Although I haven’t the slightest idea of what kind of elementary concept could be used in such a theory.” A month before he died he wrote, “The distinction between the past, present, and the future is only an illusion. However the tenacious the solution maybe.” They’ve done a number of experiments that showed all kinds of crazy things like John Wheeler, he did maybe the most interesting one of all. He did one where he was looking like a giant experiment with the double-slit only he was looking at the light coming around distant galaxies. Light from a quasar it bends around galaxies. It either takes the right path or the left path to get to your telescope so he made two telescopes. One pointing to the right, one pointing to the left depending on how you chose to look at it, it changes back and forth from a particle to a wave. But the light was sent billions of years ago. So how was that possible that light from that star before we even evolved here before the earth was even here as going right or left based on whether or not we’re looking at it today. Yes, that’s what he came up within the end. It’s almost like it’s going back in time but remember there is no time. Time is just something that we’re inventing. It’s like Einstein said, “There is no difference between past, present, and future.” and in 1979, Wheeler had made fun of parapsychology saying, “It’s a pseudo-science we shouldn’t be studying the stuff.” By the 1990’s he said, “We live in what we call the called it a participatory universe”. Reality is created by the observer and he coined the term participatory anthropic principle to describe the way the universe is shaped by our observation of it. That’s completely repudiating the mechanist theory. It’s already basically been debugged. I’m just putting all the pieces together and showing you we need to stop acting as if it’s still there. Of course, I’m not saying we can’t use science and technology definitely we should. We should use it in a wise way. We should be aware that it has basic limitations of explaining the universe. It’s never going to explain everything. We have the power to change the universe by changing our thoughts literally. Not just by believing in yourself and trying harder but literally, you think something and that send ripples instantaneously throughout the whole world to the whole universe. Your good thought or to your bad thought. Your thought for someone’s betterment. That’s basically my section 2 where going the fact that there’s more than chemistry and physics. That leaves us in a funny place because where do we go from there, right? To develop wisdom you need to talk about spirituality. The third section is where I basically I go through and try to show what in the preface to section 3. If you just look at the mechanist view what it’s assuming you know there’s no such thing as free will, no such thing as ESP, metaphysical powers don’t exist, religious teaching is all just imaginary, there’s no purpose in life except just to go on living and to reproduce. There’s no reason to believe that there’ll be blissful or happy ending for any of us or the earth or the universe. The universe is just going to turn cold and dark someday and everything is just going to end in oblivion. That’s the mechanist theory but if you look at what I’m going to call the yoga world view which is yoga in an expanded sense the yoga of all worldwide traditions all combined. Of course, I used the word yoga because the Indian system is the most systematic and the first to put it all into one big ball of wax. The yoga worldview says everything happens for a reason. Things aren’t random. You have free will. You have a consciousness that is special and separate for the material world. The material universe is created by the thoughts of all conscious beings. Ordinary chemical and physical rules can be breached. Magic and miracles are possible. And on and on. It’s not just wishful thinking. This is really based on all those scientific things that we just looked at. I know this is hard for some people to. This is where some people in the scientific realm will have a hard time and they may have some personal experiences with some of these paranormal things so to speak before they can make a jump to accept this. From here on it’s pretty much just talking about spirituality. Section 3 is called Jesus Christ and the worldwide traditions of yoga. Where I’m going to explaining to I’ve learned about trying to put together all of the things that I learned about Christ and that I believed about Christ with all these other religions that are out there. I was in a situation where it was all or nothing. Either you believe in Christ and you go to church and you believe that everyone who doesn’t go to church and believe in Christ is going to fry in hell forever or you just don’t believe at all. You can just be an atheist. How do you reconcile? I couldn’t believe that Christ was just a regular man but on the other hand I couldn’t until I had my Taiwan experience. I couldn’t explain how these stories about Christ and his teachings and his miracles how they fit together with all the other religious teachings of the world. This section goes through and explains how if you adopt or brought a perspective and not just view Jesus within the Judea Christian tradition but look at Him within the context of spiritual traditions worldwide. His teachings and the powers that he seems to exhibit in his miracles. They’re not just unique to him but they common to other masters of yoga. And Christ’s message is fully in keeping with the message the philosophy of yoga. Yoga is a Sanskrit word it means attaching. Yoking yourself to the universe around you. There’s various forms of yoga abut the ultimate aim of each one is to control the fluctuations of the mind reach a state of transcendence and the individual self merges with the absolute infinite reality that we can call God. That’s what this book is about. This section of the book is about is where I go through and basically just take right out of the new English bible or the world English Bible right out of the new testament and some quotes from the old testament and say what Jesus said and then explain what he might have meant if you look at it from a brother perceptive instead of just maybe what you’re told n Sunday school. And how everything fits completely with the other teachers of yoga.
[01:08:58] Ashley James: One thing we haven’t talked about in detail, you’ve told me before we hit record and so I want to go through that is that your purpose was instead of which I think what our focus is right now is looking at what difference. Like what’s different between Christians and Muslims? What’s different between yogists and Christians? What’s different? We’re always so fixated on what’s different because what’s different is the threat. That’s why people feel threatened by other ethnicities, races, and religions because we’re afraid that they are going to take away our freedom. We’re afraid they’re going to this unknown if they have a difference than us then they’re going to impose their difference on us. It’s going to take away our freedom it’s looking at this fear. It’s a fear-based world that we’re living in. where people are afraid of other races and other religions because we’re afraid of what’s different. And what you’re doing in your book is looking at what’s similar. What are the similarities? Where do all religions meet? Where can we all have common ground? Through your book, you want to create a world where we can be close to our neighbors and instead of be afraid of the color of their skin or the religion they practice. We can see the commonality and go, “Wow we have so much in common and celebrate our differences and there is actually nothing to be afraid of because we have so much in common.” I’m hearing that in your book you want people to start to see and open their minds whatever religion they’ve been practicing or studied that they can actually see that isn’t wonderful that there’s commonalities that Christianity has commonalities in other religions? We can look for these commonalities in order to celebrate and grow our own spirituality?
[01:11:05] Troy Reicherter: Exactly, yes. I’m trying to be benevolent altruistic but it’s also very practical. We live in a world with other people. We’re not all going to convince them that our way is the right way. We may feel inwardly that we’re right but we have to learn to live with others. We just have to and our kids have to. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Man must put an end to war or war will put an end to mankind.” Almost all I found was just similarities when I delved into it. A lot of people will say Christ didn’t talk about reincarnation for example.
[01:11:39] Ashley James: This is interesting you bring this up. I’ve talked to people one of which has been underneath the Vatican on the private libraries and what has been understood is that reincarnation was taken out of Christianity that it was actually believed but it was taken out because they didn’t want people to think that they had more than one chance at life because if you have more that one chance maybe you won’t be a good person in this one. Whatever. I’m just going to, I didn’t know what but they have this idea they could control people where it’s like listen, It’s like raising a freaking 4-year-old. I’ve got a 4-year-old. “Listen if you don’t do it right, you’re going to hell.” If you look at the they way they created Christianity it’s like, “If you don’t do it right you’re going to hell so you better do it right now. That’s like if you don’t clean your room you’re getting a time out.” It was very authoritarian but there’s multiple sources that are saying that reincarnation was actually a part of early Christianity.
[01:12:44] Troy Reicherter: Well, like in John 16:12 Christ said,” I have yet many things to tell you but you can’t bear them now.” There’s quotes like this from Him and from Mohammed also saying there’s lots more that I have to tell you people but you couldn’t deal with it so I couldn’t tell you we don’t know what ekes they wanted to say. As you say, yes, a lot of early Christians were Arians which means Arianism after Prince Arius of Alexandria, not the Arian race. They considered Jesus to have been just a man who then became Christ through practice. They didn’t believe that He was part of the Trinity. This pre-existing Holy trinity which that came later. The council of Nicea and the council of Constantinople they sat down this creed saying, “This is not right. Reincarnation is not right.” Reincarnation so many people believed in it. Yes, that’s right a lot of these early beliefs got snapped out into one flavor fits all religion. Then it just became the religion of the Byzantine Empire and the roman empire so then they used that to justify “well, in order to predict Christianity we have to have this war” even though Christ said to turn the other cheek, don’t hurt anyone, love your enemy. That’s nice but they went ahead and had their wars anyway and called it Christian. This whole idea of his was just like a guru in a forest in India. It’s not what it became later as a justification of every western empire that’s existed where we say we’re doing this to spread Christianity or to save Christianity or whatnot. Christ’s teachings were really no different from Buddhist teaching any important way that I can see. I have some of that in the footnotes here, in the end, some comparisons between some of the miracles of Christ and others and his references to fasting, of course, the importance of fasting. This is section 3, is pointing out how to view the teachings of Christ in a larger way so that you see it as part of a worldwide tradition to yoga not just limited to the Judea Christian interpretation of Abraham and the one God and the ten commandments all of those rules which basically tells everyone who’s outside of that circle you’re going to hell and you’re going burn there forever. I think it’s much more accurate all the more useful for getting along with other people. So that’s section 3. Section 4 is the biggest section of the book. It’s called the unified section culture.
[01:15:22] Ashley James: Before we go into section 4, you’re starting to tell me before you hit record about being in Taiwan and finding the book in the library.
[01:15:38] Troy Reicherter: Yes, thank you for reminding me. When I was basically researching what became this part of the book and the other part, I was praying constantly. I felt reinvigorated. Like I hadn’t felt since a teenager going to get baptized. Okay, if Christ is omnipresent if my teachers in Taiwan in a basement in Taiwan can feel his spirit why can’t I? So I made this call saying, “Christ, I know you’re out there and I really believe in you now.” After having believed and not believe and believed again. “I want to tell the true story about you, please help me find what I need.” Someone told me about a book which led me to another book. So I was looking for the book The Nag Hammadi library which turned out was in my school library at the National Taiwan Normal University. There was one floor at that time devoted to English books. I was looking for it. I found it in the card catalog. I went upstairs to get the book it was a reference book so it couldn’t be checked out. I went to the spot where it’s supposed to be but it wasn’t there. I didn’t go ask for help yet but I just thought what are the odds that I can find this book on my own. Unless someone has left it lying out. It’s like a needle in a haystack. It’s not the biggest library it the world but still considerable. As I was leaving, just almost felt – I didn’t hear a voice exactly but it’s like someone was tugging me saying “Come look this way. Come look this way” and remembering my prayer that I made. I just followed my instincts and I was walking around thinking I’m looking for something but I don’t know what and I’ll know it when I see it. I made several turns and I was looking at a big line of books, 6 feet high and one book caught my attention. It had nothing to do with the subject that I had been looking for and I don’t remember what it was. The very first book I reached for because it got my attention, I pull down, looked behind it and hidden behind it was the book The Nag Hammadi Library that I had been looking for.
[01:17:47] Ashley James: What is the Nag Hammadi Library?
[01:17:49] Troy Reicherter: It’s a compilation of gnostic texts from Egypt from about the 4th century. They were discovered right after World War II in clay jars in the town of Nag Hammadi. So they called it that the Nag Hammadi Library. I have the most amazing quotes from it in my book.
[01:18:09] Ashley James: What is it? What are these texts from the 4th century about?
[01:18:14] Troy Reicherter: It’s a Christian sect that was basically stamped out. They don’t go into reincarnation so much but I can read you a little bit of it from my excepts. What I did with section 4 was, I basically realized in my studies of comparative religions that there’s certain number of principles and practices that are common to most religions. Not everyone has all of them. I came up with the number 30. 30 principles and 30 practices that I go through, I delineate, and that’s pretty much my systems for inclusion in this section. I go through beginning with indigenous peoples and then Jewish traditions mostly by the age of the tradition in question. There’s a section of each one just going through this 30 principal and practices which they’re basically yoga ideas that we could all agree on. Like, get to the right part here. Like the first principles is, for example, people should focus on love and compassion above all. These qualities are the basis of all yoga practice. They dissolve the imaginary divisions between self and other and motivate one to move forward so they can help all suffering beings. Number two, an omnipotent omnipresent force exists. No names or images can adequately describe this power because this is infinite and exist in dimensions outside time and space. Number three, multiple agents of God exists. These divine agents which could be called gods, buddhas, Bodhisattvas, angels. They can in one sense be viewed as independent entities but in another sense, they remain integral parts of God just as different hand puppets may be filed and animated by the same puppeteer. These agents exist around us and within us speaking with us according to how available we make ourselves them. Number four a spiritual force exists within all things. And so on. There’s the principles and then practices. 30 practices which begin with meditation and prayer. Number two, contact mindfulness to repel evil thoughts. Number three, constant control of one’s temper and emotions. So then in each section as I go through each different tradition I’m just highlighting things that fit from those. It’s way too complicated to put a footnote with each one because sometimes in a single sentence you’ll have connection to maybe four different principles and practices but if you got them all in your mind you can read through and recognize as we go. There’s a lot of things we’re talking about 26 years of research. Involved and studying everything from things that very few people know about. The Incas the way they look at the energy in the body almost like the way they do in India or China or the Nag Hammadi library from the Christian section. What I found also is that in the major religions or the major monotheistic religions there is an esoteric aspect to this one. In Judaism, they’ve got the kabala where they believe very clearly in karma, reincarnation, the whole idea of a bodhisattva, a being who keeps coming back again and again to help people. There are Jews who believe in these things. This is just not the mainstream Jewish version. There are Christians who believe in these things. In the Islamic tradition, there is Sufis who believes in these things which we would normally consider to be sort eastern religions. There is a hidden inner part to these larger religions that really are almost exactly identical what they’re saying one with another when breathing practices, meditation, the terminology that they use, the stories that they tell. It’s a very rich section. I enjoyed writing it although it took forever because of all the great stories that I’ve came up with. This section on Christianity is actually the largest because that is the religion that I the found most on that very few people know about. Like the sane gospels that might have been, you’re referring to about the hidden library underneath the Vatican. Couple other things like that. Get to it first then I could tell you the name again. Things about India and China more people know about eastern religions but the monotheistic western religions they generally keep those things more hidden. I would like to quote to you from the Nag Hammadi library a little bit since you’re asking.
[01:2319] Ashley James: I want to know what they had to say about Christ.
[01:23:23] Troy Reicherter: Yes, they were Christian but they call themselves children of the light basically. Each one is a different text. Here’s one called the prayer of the apostle Paul. Paul calls out for help saying that the ultimate truth is his mind and his repose. The disciple asked for the perfect thing that is beyond his grasp. There’s a text called the treaties on the resurrection. Where it says, “The resurrection is no illusion and is more fitting to say that the world is an illusion.” There’s a text called the tripartite tractate where they say “God is the form of the formless, the body of the body less, the word of the wordless and the wisdom of those made wise.” My battery just died here. If I could plug it in your house, I could quote for more of it. The Nag Hammadi Library has Christ also saying things that aren’t in the new testament that are quite interesting. The whole idea of it is that people should be constantly mindful and praying and saying prayer themselves at all times and that there’s an effect from every thought that you have. Just like what you see in the Islamic section with roomie and his teacher saying that every single thought you have affects everyone in the whole world. The principles and practices were used as the guiding principle for writing this section. It goes all the way from indigenous people up to I added an elven section for Bhai because it figured it a large enough to merit that. I hope that by reading it gives people the principles and practices aren’t just academic. Just to say isn’t that interesting that they have these similarities but it gives us a common ground that we could in the future. Make intentional communities where we by intention and design focus on spiritual living, focus on sustainable living, environmentally sustainable. Plan our communities so we’ll have much more interaction with our neighbors so that were close to them and have friendships with them and yet not go down that religious path of either making a new religion or having religious warship. On the actual living space so that it doesn’t become, its spiritual community but not a religious community in a sense that everyone has to agree on this is the right way. That’s been one of the main tricks in the world up to now as I see it because we have this fights over religion and yet we want to be friends with people of all different religions so we don’t. How can we live closely with them and still have common ground and yet have your own freedom? The fifth section of the book is called creating a spiritual renaissance. That is where we take all of the stuff that we learned up to now about the nature of reality. The fact that our consciousness determines our reality. The fact the science and technology are great but we need is wisdom to make a livable, sustainable, peaceful world. The fact that no one religion has all the answer but they’re all part of this larger whole, the yoga of worldwide traditions. If you look the boundaries, we draw on the map. The political boundaries are just invented by us and so are the boundaries between the religions. They really are all the same as the Sufi say. So looking at that way and using this principles and practices to guide us is something that we can just agree if employed the right way can be beneficial. It doesn’t mean that everyone has to use each one. For example Muslims and Jewish people they’re not going to use statues in their practice it’s just against in their religion but one of the principles or practices is that statues can be used so that they can just agree that, “Okay, statues can be used. So my Hindu neighbor, my Buddhist neighbor, my Christian neighbor they might use the statues that they pray to. I’m not going to do that but neither am I going to insist that they stop doing it.” These are things that are reserved for each person just like we all have the right to freedom of expression but it doesn’t mean we have to go out and use it every day. Almost like a bill of rights that things people can agree on. From there, looking at the teachings of the sages that produce these traditions the first place. You look at the way they told people to live in groups. It almost always the same. Large groups are self-sufficient. Where the focus is on spirituality where they share common meals most of the time. Whether they have little or few possessions. At least to say they’re not materialistic, try to be as welcoming as they can. Each one has its own rules on what and what it cannot do. We design a whole new type of economics which I would call cooperative economics. Coops aren’t new and neither is cooperative economics but the way I’m talking about it is a new thing.
[01:29:00] Ashley James: I’m friends with someone that lives in a farming coop and actually a few people in Manitoba. It’s a whole community everyone has their own house or large building with several apartments. They all run a farm together and when you call everyone just has one phone number and there’s an operator with an extension and you tell what house, what family member you’re trying to reach and they have business hours because they run this whole farm and this whole coop. Yes, they live together as a community and it works really well because they save money together. The whole community gets together and will buy solvents in bulk or buy grains in bulk or something so they can get together and save money that way. They can all take turns cooking. It’s neat. It’s a level of community that we really have lost but we had it a long time ago.
[01:30:12] Troy Reicherter: Yes. Definitely. I miss it. I was in Taiwan and I grew up kind of like that. It was like one big family. Based on the success and the failures of the group that I was in, I’ve learned a lot of lessons. Mine was a spiritual group and it had certain spiritual leaders and the group I’m talking about would be something three would be a spiritual leader per se but everyone would have to sign on to I think the way to build it as I say in my book is to start with associations. People could create associations with certain by-laws and the 30 principles and 30 practices would have to be something that would be agreed upon by everyone and then one of the goals of the association would be to build up coops. That you get a group of people together saying, “Okay, we actually want to live together in this way, on this piece of land. We’ll do what it takes to get the capital, to get that and to make it happen.” It would be an intentional community where I think looking at the lessons of the past, it should be as sustainable as possible, try to grow your own food, everyone should have a hand in growing food being close to nature and trying to eat more together more often. That’s one of the lessons that they found in kibbutz in Israel that’s like, when people aren’t eating together then they just start to stay at their house all the time but if people are eating together then it’s like a big family. That closeness is something we’ve completely lost. Most people have completely lost in the modern world. Where we barely know our neighbors and we don’t have much in common with them. When we do know them sometimes it’s scary. If you’re in a community like this but it can be multi-racial and of course, many different religious groups they’re all together. There has to be other rules which I’ve included in the book based on my experiences and thinking about it a lot. Like you couldn’t have a religious institution that coop property they would have to be on the periphery. If you have communities based on, a coop unit of I think 300 is a nice number. Larger than that you get to have so many people there that you don’t remember all their names. Then next door, you can have another one, another one with up to that number. Then for those people in that regions coops who are Hindu, they’ll set up some Hindu temples nearby but not on the coop. Of course, in the future the way I see it things are going to go ways that I can’t predict of cause. Just like Martin Luther King, he nailed his 95-thesis challenging the Catholic Church to a debate. He had no idea he was starting the revolution reformation. He wound up other people took charge and they just ran in different directions. Things will happen and of course, not everyone’s going to make coops the way I foresee. There could easily be Christian coop over here and a Muslim coop over there and an atheist coop over there. I think that for the future, if we want to really peaceful sustainable world then we need to live in some kind of close-knit communities where we can make decisions about the products that we buy, the things that we do to the earth rather than have it be all spread out so that you and I make decisions based on preference, convenience.
[01:33:36] Ashley James: Amazon rating.
[01:33:37] Troy Reicherter: Amazon rating. Once in a while, we try to do what’s best for the planet but most of the time we’re like, “Well, everyone has a cellphone I need to get this.” If we could be in large groups and say, “What kind of paper should I buy?” In the book, I make the example for toilet paper. Probably the best for the planet will be something complete recycled something brown, something rough, something that can go easily into a compost toilet and go back to the land. And yet we don’t see those on sale. What you see is nice fluffy bleach right with lost of chemical in it not good for the environment. Yet there’s no demand for the right thing because it’s not pretty. It’s going to be harder to make. Who wants something not wrapped in plastic because wrapping it in plastic seems so clean? Making those decisions about what to buy, how to affect our environment and our world. They need to be made in a way that is wise and that hold each other accountable. We can’t say this is the right thing to do but we’re doing to the wrong thing anyway because no one else is doing the right thing and it doesn’t really matter and I’m only one person. We make all these excuses. Letting demand just guide things the way it is right now isn’t really working out. We need to have more thoughts and responsibility and accountability if were going to do what they say we need to do by cutting our carbon emission so quickly, so dramatically. There’s no real action taken around the world to do this. When we come out to the end of the tunnel and I’m very optimistic that we will do all of those one way or another. When we come out to the other end of the tunnel, we will be living in communities that are sustainable and that are peaceful otherwise we won’t be here. I’m assuming we will be here so I’m saying we will. So by reverse engineering what we have to do to get to that point that’s how I came up with all of these. I think in the future people will take them for granted they’ll say what took him so long to realize these things and to start living that way.
[01:35:43] Ashley James: Your book sounds fascinating. You’re talking about living in communities and that reminds me of a town in Italy where they couldn’t believe the heart disease was almost non-existent and compared to the rest of Italy, compared to the rest of the world. They were just one of the lowest rates of heart disease in the world in this one region of Italy. This American scientist went over to study them. And to figure out what is it their diet or they’re eating differently? Is it the olive oil that they get in this region? What is it that’s going on that has these people so healthy? Almost no heart disease. Almost just like a disease, rates are really low. He went over there and he watched them marked down what they ate. Him and his whole team went over amber and like, “Okay well, they’re eating the same meatballs. Probably the same recipes been passed down from grandma to grandma. The same meatballs, the same pasta, they’re drinking the same wine, everything was the same as the rest of Italy. What genetically different about these people and it took them a while to figure out that in this whole town was pretty poor as an area. They weren’t ever rich. Most of them worked in the factories but after a hard long day working in the factory they on the walk home they stopped off four different friend’s houses and sit around and drink wine together. He noticed that it was a totally different social pattern that they have. Everyone knew each other and they had a multi-generational families who’d have three generations in every household because they were poor so they had to. The kids were always around aunts, uncles, grandparents. There was a large support structure. Children always had loving people surrounding them and anytime you’ve had a stressful day you can rely on the friends you grew up with. You can go to their house and have some wine on the porch and then walk to your aunt’s house or walk to your mom’s house whatever. He figured out it had nothing to do with their diet nothing to do with their gene expression. Non-genetic but maybe gene expression is triggered by low stress. Even though they were very poor to our standards they had very little stress because they had the support of the community. If someone’s house burnt down the entire village would get together and rebuild. If someone fell in hard times, they would immediately have a support system. They had low stress but also a support system they always knew was there for them. As time went on, the world has become our transient and the people in the town moved away and jobs changed and within one generation, the disease rate rose to be the same as the rest of Italy. He figured out that it was, in fact, the community was the reason why they had such low disease rates.
[01:39:06] Troy Reicherter: Yes, it sounds like the Roseto Effect. It was a town in, I think Pennsylvania. Similar thing with research in it seems to be the lack of stress. There a book that came out recently I can’t remember the title right now. My computer’s battery died. We’re in a garden here but I think it was called lost connections. It was on democracy now. That was the author’s what he was finding was people were mostly unhappy about their lost connections with each other lost connections with nature and just the whole idea of always having to work over someone richer than you and being in a society where you’re not valued. Billionaires are valued and common people are just not. It constant stress and belittling feeling and isolation and when you put all those connections back together in a more sane kind of socioeconomic system, where you have those friendly loving relationships with all your neighbors and friends and family and you see them all the time. Your levels of stress drop way down, you don’t have to worry what’s going to me if this happens and that happens and you don’t always feel like I need to go out and do something and compete with somebody else. You know you just have time, they’ve proven just time and nature makes people feel better. It does all kinds of good things to your body. I think it’s crucial that people get back to farming themselves. We’re so used to just going and getting the food we need. Less than 1 % of the population think is farming right now in America. I really admire the fact that you’re planting some stuff back here. I have some beds in my house that I’ve been meaning to plant for a long time but I keep getting caught with these experiments of mine. It’s really important to teach people not just “Oh yes, this is what a tomato looks like but this is where it comes from and this is how to prepare it and to grow it.” If you’re every other food. Education should be a big part of the coop system. Valuing education above all. Above all the things that we’re doing and every kind of education. Moral education. Spiritual education. Yes, to self-sufficiency, environmental education. Teaching people how to appreciate all the ancestors who came before them and to live in peace with others and to pass it forward. Pay it forward. As we set an example if the elderly were totally focused on teaching the younger generation instead of going cruises to Alaska and you know then that will show them, “Oh this is what I’m supposed to do when I’m old. I’m supposed to take the stuff that I’ve learned and teach them to the younger generation instead of just flying around but that what our culture teaches people right now that’s the to do and if you go to a school and say can I help out they’ll just look at you funny and like you don’t really fit in here what are you talking about. We have to restructure so many things and I think a lot of those answers were common sense answers if we’re able to sit down in a round table discussion with our neighbor and say, “Well, doesn’t it make sense to do things this way? Yes, it does. Why aren’t we doing this way? I don’t know” then well suddenly make that shift. There’s so many things we’re trapped in our current socioeconomic system that’s driving us into this massive defense spending so every country can be armed to the teeth against other countries. If we keep down this path, you see what going to happen. Not for a minute besides just the global warming aspect of it. China. What if China decided they want to have all the nuclear submarines that we have? Just so they can have parity with us. What if then India decided and then Pakistan decided they want all those. Look at all the close calls we had just with the United States and a few other countries having nuclear-equipped submarines. Then the long-range bombers. We can’t keep doing this every country can’t have all those stuff. We really need to tone our spending on military way, way, way, way, back and invest in things that really matter.
[01:43:06] Ashley James: Invest in the quality of life.
[01:43:08] Troy Reicherter: Quality of life, education commonsensical things like that. Infrastructure and above all I often think of it like that movie Apollo 13. Where those guys were stuck in space and they weren’t sure if they make it back or not so they made a little replica of the unit down on earth they said, “Here’s all you guys have to work with. Make it work just keep figuring out until we figure out how we’re going to make that space ship get back here.” Well, we’re in a spaceship, spaceship earth. We’ve go to figure out how to make it with what we’ve got. They’re telling us within another decade or so if we don’t do something we may have passed the point of no return in terms of carbon emission. That’s just one thing. Look at the pollution we were just talking about earlier. Just think about in what is the last 40 years, sperm count has dropped to 50%, keep going at that rate who’s going to be able to have kids anymore? There’s a lot of things that were just getting worse exponentially and we need to stop it right away. As that teenager, Greta Thunberg said in Sweden the girl who’s refusing to go to school one day a week because there’s not being done about global warming she says, “You have to treat a crisis as a crisis and right now, we’re just not treating this as a crisis.” My book is many things. It’s philosophy, it’s an explanation of what we know about the way the universe really works. It’s an explanation of how all the religions relate to one another and they’re really all one big thing that can live the adherence which can live together in peace and should. It’s a blueprint for getting to work, make associations and one day cooperatives that people can live on to make that world peace start to come about. If that becomes a dominant model, it’s spiritual based self-sufficient coops around the world instead of everyone kind of “every man for himself. I’m going to get a job. I’m going to get that paycheck. Get a big house and environment be dammed while I’m driving my gas cars around and everything else totally unsustainable system. It’s not going to be pretty and so we have to think about not just today and tomorrow but our kids and our grandkids and our great-grandkids what are they going to inherit from us if we don’t start to thinking seriously about these bigger issues because the bigger issues are there right on our face now. The future is now. We can’t say, “Oh, we’ll do it in the 22nd century.” Can you imagine what kind of bad dystopian science fiction movie you’ve seen that look likes the world is going to look like? Like Elysium or one of those other ones where the whole world is basically just a giant or Wall-E, where the world is just garbage. That’s kind of where we’re headed unless we do something seriously to change. That’s what this book is. It’s a serious attempt to make a blueprint. So it’s called utopia found and it’s coming out just about 500 years after the original book. Utopia. Yes, almost exactly. It is as it says a blueprint for spiritual renaissance and world peace. So I hope you’ll give it a try. It’s on Kindle. The introductory price as we speak is $5.00. May change later. Oh, that book you can print that one up. It’s $16.00 currently for a print version. I just ordered two so I can have one of my own but if you prefer the printed version it cost a little more to make them one at a time and that’s $16.00.
[01:46:56] Ashley James: That’s on Amazon?
[01:44:57] Troy Reicherter: Amazon kindle, yes. Amazon yes, kindles like that electronic version and the print version is also there.
[01:47:06] Ashley James: Yes, on Amazon. We’ll make sure the link to Utopia now? Found? I knew it. Utopia Found. I want to say it’s now.
[01:47:16] Troy Reicherter: Remember Eckhart Tolle’s the power of now. A new earth. It’s little like those but I’m not so focused on what each individual person needs to do like in their own spiritual practice exactly. I’m talking about the generalities of the big picture of how things put together. How each religion recommends you do the same things. How we can have a path connect the dots. A path moving forward to actually building communities is that they have to look like if we are going to survive.
[01:47:48] Ashley James: To allow each individual to have their own spiritual practice and not step on anyone’s toes and allow everyone the spiritual freedom, religious freedom. While creating a tight-knit community.
[01:48:02] Troy Reicherter: Yes. I think there will definitely people who will say, “Well, I’m Christian. I only wanted to be around another Christian.” that’s fine but not if we divide the world up into and if everyone did that and you just have Muslims over here and Christian over there then were almost down into like mini civil wars where people would be able to see eye to eye with each other. I think the best thing is that the majority of people or the center if you will, the center has to be able to see all points of view and be as inclusive as possible to other people. That was also in mind when I designed this.
[01:48:41] Ashley James: Awesome. It’s been so wonderful having you on the garden today. Is there anything you’d like to say to wrap up today’s interview?
[01:48:48] Troy Reicherter: Well, again the book is called Utopia Found. I’ve spent 26 years writing it not that it was all I was doing this time. 26 years of research and thinking and experience. Some of my own experiences and at the end of it, there’s a lot of very positive prophecies. I’ve got over 2 dozen prophesies that I’ve collected for every inhabited continent about the future and they’re all very bright. They all say that there is this new age coming. It would appear some of them are very specific saying like right now in the 21st century this will happen. They all do say that we’re going to pass through a very difficult period but they all say that we’re going to come out of it in a great state where there will be world peace. I’m talking about from the bible to Nostradamus to Islamic to native American. I have many, many prophesies that I’ve collected. I draw my strength from that when times are tough. I do believe that they could see the future and they’re all saying essentially the same thing that all people from all races will be living together in peace as if they’re members of one big family and even one Chinese prophesy says, past and future will be joined as one and there won’t be cities anymore. As if everyone had gone back to the land self-sufficiently. People of all colors will be living together. I have a lot of hope that that will happen but we have to have a bit of sea of change in our thoughts. Thoughts lead the way and then our actions can follow. We can actually build this better future. So please check it out. It’s called Utopia Found. I’m Troy Reicherter. You can see my author page at Troy Reicherter. It’s R-E-I-C-H-E-R-T-E-R.net with links to the books and same information and links to my other projects.
[01:50:46] Ashley James: I’ll make sure all those links will be in the show notes of today’s podcast at the learntruehealth.com. Troy it’s been a pleasure having you here today. Thank you so much.
[01:50:53] Troy Reicherter: It’s been fantastic Ashley, thank you so much.
[01:50:57] Ashley James: Hello, true health seeker. Have you ever thought about becoming a health coach? Do you love learning about nutrition and how we can shift our lifestyle and our diet so that we can gain optimal health and happiness and longevity? Do you love helping your friends and family to solve their health problems and figure out what they can do to eat healthier? Are you interested in becoming someone who can grow their own business, support people in their success? Do you love helping people? You might be the perfect candidate to become a health coach. I highly recommend checking out the Institute for Integrated Nutrition. I just spent the last year in their health-coaching sort of vacation program and it really blew me away. It was so amazing. I learned over a hundred dietary theories. I learned all about nutrition but from the standpoint on how we can help people to shift their life, to shift their lifestyle to gain true holistic health. I definitely recommend you check them out. You can google Institute for Integrated Nutrition or IIN, or give them a call or you can go to learntruehealth.com/coach and you can receive a free module of their training. So check it out and see if it’s something that you’d be interested in. Be sure to mention my name, Ashley James and the Learn True Health podcast because I made a deal with them that they would give you the best price possible. I highly recommend checking it out. It really changed my life to be in their program. I’m such a big advocate that I wanted to spread this information. We need more health coaches. In fact, health coaching is the largest growing career right now in the health field. So many health coaches are getting in and helping people because you can work in chiropractic offices, doctor’s offices, you can work in hospitals. You can work online through Skype and help people around the world. You can become an author. You can go into the school system and help with your local schools shift their programs to help children be healthier. You can go into senior centers and help them to shift their diet and lifestyle to best support them and their success and their health goals. There’s so many different available options for you when you become a certified health coach. So check out IIN. Check out the Institute for Integrated Nutrition. Mention my name. Get the best deal. Give them a call and they’ll give you lots of free information and help you to see if this is the right move for you. Classes are starting soon. The next round of classes are starting at the end of the month, so you’re going to want to call them now and check it out. If you know anyone in your life who would be an amazing coach, please tell them about it. Being a health coach is so rewarding and you get to help so many people.
Are you looking to optimize your health? Are you looking to get the best supplements at the lowest price? For high-quality supplements and to talk to someone about what supplements are best for you, go to takeyoursupplements.com and one of our fantastic true health coaches will help you pick out the right supplements for you that are highest quality and the best price. That’s takeyoursupplements.com. Be sure to ask about free shipping and our awesome referral program.
Get Connected With Troy Reicherter!
Shane And Michelle Elsdon And Ashley James
- Get to know Michelle and Shane Eldston – The Art of Loving Center
- The foundation of a good relationship is friendship
- “Repair attempts”
- Have an “affair” with your spouse
- The difference between love and desire
- Workshops and the Power Weekend sessions
- The emotional bank account
- The Six Hours A Week Homework
A good relationship starts with a good friendship. In this episode, Michelle and Shane Elsdon shares with us the secret of having a vibrant relationship. Get to know their workshop schedules and discover The Six Hours A Week Homework to rekindle your relationships.
Hello true health seeker and welcome to another exciting episode of the Learn True Health podcast. You’re going to love today’s interview. Now it is for couples and couples who are married. However, they have some great information here even for people who are no longer in a relationship, in between relationships, or someone who hasn’t yet entered one. It’s just amazing advice. And for those who are in marriages, you will love exploring and integrating the advice that they give today, because it will intensify the love, the connection, the communication, the joy, the intimacy, the romance in your relationship. So you’re just gonna love today’s interview.
I want to let you know, I just got an email today from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. The IIN is the company that I graduated from, I took their online health coach training program to become a health coach. Now you can do this even as a busy mom or working full time. It’s online, they pace it so that busy people can do it in their spare time. Right now, until August 4, you can sign up risk free, zero down. Meaning for 30 days, the first 30 days you enroll, you don’t put any money down. And you can drop out if you decide to, feel like this isn’t for me, you can drop out no problem. So basically the first 30 days of being in their program and just trying it out for you is 100% risk free. So if you’ve been listening to the show, and you keep hearing me tell you how amazing their program is, now’s your chance to get a taste of it totally for free for the first 30 days. And not only that, but they’re taking in instant $1500 off the tuition. That is a huge chunk of the tuition they’re taking off. And that’s both for their paid in full, and for their payment plan option. I went with the payment plan and it was affordable, it was like the same as a credit card payment. So it was very affordable. I love that. When I enrolled, they said to me that because after the first six months, you start working with clients, and you graduate six months later. So you actually start working with clients halfway through the program. And they told me that the the really successful health coaches have their program totally paid off by the time they’ve graduated. So it’s really that easy to build your coaching practice when you apply yourself. Now with this special, they also give a bonus, you get a course that is almost $1,000 it’s one of their advanced courses totally for free. It’s the How to Successfully Write and Publish a Book. And it’s a self paced book writing program. The second bonus is you get to be on to live group coaching calls led by an integrative health coach. It’s an excellent opportunity for you to experience firsthand what coaching is like and how the transformation process can help you to set your goals and to achieve them. And the third bonus is you get $100 gift card to the Thrive Market which is so awesome. So if you have any interest at all in learning the tools that the Institute for Integrative Nutrition teaches you to be able to be an amazing health coach to take your health to the next level, and to help those around you. Then Google IIN – the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, just Google IIN and it comes right up. Give them a call. They’re really amazing. I love how just kind their staff is, all of them are health coaches. So you’re going to be able to ask them what it was like for them. And let them know that I sent you, Ashley James from the Learn True Health podcast so that you get this special. I’m really excited for you guys and everyone that listens that gets this deal.
Any male listeners that become health coaches, I love mentoring. So if you’d like to also be mentored by me as you’re becoming a successful health coach, please reach out to me. You can write me [email protected]. I would love to support you and your success, while you’re going through your program and after to help you help others. This is what Learn True Health podcast is all about. It’s helping as many people as possible to gain the health that they deserve.
Now this episode is not about physical health. This episode is about the mental emotional health that is so important when you’re married. If your marriage is not doing so well, the stress of that can drain your magnesium. As Kristen Bowen pointed out to me yesterday when I was talking to her about my interview. Kristen Bowen the magnesium soap lady that I love so much. When we are stressed out from being in a marriage that is unhappy, it can affect our health, our emotional health, our physical health, everything. And so you’re going to love today’s interview because it’s going to teach you wonderful lessons to creating a life full of love and joy. And you keep listening to the Learn True Health podcast and you’ll have a life full of health as well.
So go ahead and call IIN the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and just check it out, completely risk free zero down the first 30 days and dive into their program and see if it’s right for you. It really was life changing for me, so I know you’ll love it. Excellent. Enjoy today’s interview. Have yourself a fantastic rest of your day.
[6:12] Ashley James: Welcome to the Learn True Health podcast. I’m your host, Ashley James. This is Episode 370.
I am so excited to be back in the gardens today. I mean, this whole week has been doing interviews in my backyard, in the garden. And a friend of mine who’s a Mental Health Counselor messaged me, must have been a few months ago. Time really flies. And she said, “You have to interview this couple. This couple is amazing. They help people have fantastic relationships, and they get such great results, you really have to interview them.” And so I’m here with Michelle and with Shane Elsdon, and their website is www.artoflovingcenter.com. It’s so good to have you guys here.
[7:05] Michelle and Shane Elsdon: Thank you. It’s so great to be here.
[7:07] Ashley James: I’m holding the mic. So we’re going to do our best to share it three ways. Who would like to start with sharing your story?
[7:17] Shane Elsdon: I’ll be glad to. So Michelle and I were married. And we live down in Southern Oregon. And I was doing therapy down there in Ashland. We have seven children.
[7:32] Ashley James: Seven?
[7:33] Shane Elsdon: Seven children. Yes.
[7:35] Ashley James: You look amazing, by the way.
[7:37] Shane Elsdon: Our last child went off to college. And when that happened, Michelle said, “Hey, let’s go live in a big city.” And so we started looking around, and we found Seattle. And we decided to come up here and take a look at it. And through our adventure, we found Bellevue and decided to make that our home. So when we came up here, we opened up the Art of Loving Center. And we decided at that time that we were going to try a different little niche. And we were going to approach couples counseling as a couple. So you know, most of the time we hear a lot of people when they’re coming, they’re trying to decide, “Do we want a male counselor?” “Do we want a female counselor?” You know, “Who do we want to have in the room?” And, “How do we want to do this?” And that in itself can lead to argument. So we decided that we would give it a shot to see how it worked with both of us in the room. So we started working together in Bellevue, in the room with our clients. And our clients really enjoyed it. They really liked having that dynamics of both of us in there. Sometimes we’ll do some role playing with them and show them how not to do things or how to do things. And then it kind of kicked off. And we had other therapists started calling us saying, “Is it true, you two are both in the room?” And yes, we are both in the room together. And so more clients, more couples started getting sent to us. At the beginning two years ago, when we first got up here, we were working with both individuals and couples. And we’ve just gotten so in depth with the couples that we primarily just do couples counseling, now we will see individuals over relationship issues. But it’s primarily just for relationship issues. And it’s usually because they either have just gotten out of a relationship, or they’re in the process of trying to figure out some of their issues about keeping into a relationship. So yeah, so that’s how we got started up here together. And the two of us started doing this, and it’s really taken off and we enjoy it.
[9:53] Ashley James: That’s awesome. Well, my friend who has a great marriage herself, said it wasn’t necessarily that she felt like she needed to fix something in her marriage. But that we could all benefit from tools of communication, we could all benefit from making it even better. There’s always room to make a relationship even better, even more compassionate, even more respect and understanding and appreciation for the other person and you know, setting boundaries in a healthier way. So there’s always room for these tools. And so she went to your, she did, she did some kind of workshop with you, where she was blown away, loved it and said it was wonderful. And she herself who has a great marriage has even grown further. So this isn’t just for people who have a rocky marriage, but look at the divorce rates, I mean, isn’t it like 50% of marriages are going to end in divorce? So you know, you’ve guys have an unlimited supply of clientele at your doorstep?
[10:58] Shane Elsdon: Well, I often joke… the joke comes from the fact that people who come into counseling typically are bringing a problem that’s been with them for about seven years. So I always joke and say, if I was king for a day, I would make it every couple has to come to counseling about every three and a half years, whether they’re in a great place or not just to do a little maintenance. You know, we do that kind of maintenance with our health, we go in for checkups with doctors, we take our cars in for general maintenance and checkups. I think it’s a good idea to take your marriage in. And that’s the nice thing about the workshops that we do is for those who, you know, “We don’t need counseling.” Or, “We’re afraid of counseling, and we don’t want to go in there.” The workshops are what we call psycho education. So they’re not counseling, but they’re teaching you the tools. They’re giving you some some new prospects to look into your life and see where you can gain some value and increase some connectivity with your partner that leads to better understanding.
[12:03] Ashley James: And you have a workshop coming up August 3rd and 4th. It’s called The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. That sounds really powerful. How did you guys create this workshop? Was it like a light bulb moment? Or was it a long time in the making?
[12:22] Michelle Elsdon: Well, we we both are Gottman trained. And so we studied the Gottman methodology. And so The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work is written by John Gottman. And it’s a book and then these workshops are based off of the book. So when the couples come to us to the workshop, they get a workbook and the book. And we kind of go through and just talk about starting at the basis really like we even have premarital couples that come to these workshops, you know, so that they can really get off on a good start. And when you think about it, it’s like you learn so many things in school and, and in your life, but you don’t really learn how to be in a relationship. And so we were really giving you just some basic tools on communication, but also like how to keep and build your friendship. And that’s one thing that a lot of people overlook. It’s like, they just think that, you know, we meet and we’re connected, and we’re friends, and then it kind of starts to wane a bit sometimes. And so staying cognizant of the fact that you need to be friends and work on your relationship by building it, by going on dates, and just having fun with each other like you did when you first met.
[13:48] Ashley James: Yeah. My husband and I will be celebrating our 11 years marriage next month.
[13:53] Michelle Elsdon: Oh, congratulations.
[13:54 ] Ashley James: Thank you. And he’s my best friend, we always say that, like we’re best friends. Like above all else. We’ve had that friendship grow deeper and deeper and deeper. And I see other couples that they don’t do anything together. They basically come home, maybe they eat together one meal a day, sleep in the same bed. But they have different hobbies. They spend most of the work day away from each other, maybe they spend some weekends together, but they’re not best friends. When couples work with you, do they become best friends, or best friends again? Are you looking to create that deeper relationship? Or you just want them to like at least like each other? Like, what’s the goal?
[14:36] Shane Elsdon: Well, science has shown us that the foundation of a good relationship is friendship. You know, one of the things when couples come into counseling, they come in with a problem, and they want to deal with the problems, just solve the problem. And I give an analogy that you know, you and I this is our first time of meeting. If we were to cut each other off in the safeway parking lot, we don’t know each other. You know, we could be flipping with each other, we could be rude to each other. And it’s just whatever at that time, because we don’t know each other. And we have no foundation or friendship between us and you know if we’ll ever see each other again type of thing. But if you and I were childhood friends that have grown up together, if we were roommates in college, if we barbecue every Wednesday together and we had this friendship, when we cut each other off in the parking lot, we may tease each other a little bit about our driving or something to be funny with each other because we have that friendship to do that with. But we would also be more empathetic of each other and more cautious about how we offend each other.
And it’s the same thing in a relationship. When you come into counseling, if you come in and you have lost that friendship and you’re not having that connection with your partner, it’s going to be hard to be empathetic with them, to be passionate with them. And to hear all of that aspect and trying to work through the problem. So oftentimes, when we get into this, we first learned how they’re doing in their relationship; is there a lot of positivity in the relationship or a lot of negative sentiment that’s going on in the relationship? Are they actually interacting and having a friendly relationship? If not, we start with the basis of building that friendship up, we try to get them interacting, being friends, connecting together. And it’s amazing when they start acting as friends. And when they start to build that friendship, then we can enter into the conflict and we can talk about the conflict. And it’s much easier to deal with conflict when you’re dealing with a friend than it is to deal with conflict when you’re dealing with someone that you’re no longer connected with.
[16:48] Ashley James: How can you start to build a friendship in a relationship when trust has been lost? When maybe for the last few years, there’s been fights, there’s been cattiness, there’s boundary pushing, and it feels more like a hostile environment? Maybe it’s a bit passive, but it feels more like a war zone or like dealing with like two different politicians fighting in the home rather than a friendship? How does trust and friendship start to become fostered when there’s that fear that the other person is going to revert back to hurting them verbally?
[17:35] Shane Elsdon: Well, first off, it’s a slow process. And oftentimes couples come in and they want to fix things today. And it’s not going to happen today, it’s going to take a little bit of time. So at first, what we do is we try to get the people to open up and start sharing. We also teach the people to look at themselves instead of their partner. So typically when couples walk in the room, the first thing is it’s, “I don’t have the problem, Michelle’s the one with the problem, you need to fix her.” And of course, Michelle’s over there pointing back at me saying, “I don’t have the problem, Shane’s got the problem.” And that’s how we look at this. And so the very first thing that I tried to explain to the clients is, we’re not here to fix your partner for you, we’re here to help you fix yourself, for you to become a better husband, a better man, a better brother, a better son, a better father, just a better man in the relationship. And for her to fix herself in becoming a better wife, a better mother, a better daughter, girl, just a better woman in a relationship. When the two of them start focusing on what’s going on and then they start to identify what their needs are in the relationship. And that’s one of the key things that we believe is a primary factor of getting us past and getting it started into being able to listen to each other. When we can just find a couple of little needs, and we can start making those needs happen for partners.
[19:01] Ashley James: Can you give some examples of needs that people express to their partner, when they’re starting to open up?
[19:07] Shane Elsdon: Well, a lot of times, they’re going to have just simple needs, like I need a hug, or I just need some alone time, I just need like an hour of quiet time to just gained my thoughts, I need connection. That’s a big one, I need the feeling of connection. And for this feeling of connection, it means that we have to put everything else aside and focus on our partner. So when we focus on our partner we focus on creating this connection with our partner through whatever it is. And oftentimes, you know, I tease our clients and tell them that we have a coupon for him to go get a tattoo and that tattoo we want him to get us across their forehead, and it says, “What do you need from me right now?” And if our partner asked, you know, the need is, “I just I need to connection.” The follow up question that I would ask is, so what does that look like to you? What does that connection look like to you? And that connection could just be you know, “I just want us to spend a little time together.” “I wants to take a walk.” “I want us to hold hands” “I need you to just listen to me.” I just need to vent, not to judge me not to tell me I’m wrong, but just to be an active empathetic listener to me and hear what I have to say.” So, you know, we start out with the basics like this, and trying to work with couples to help them to understand what’s going on and what their needs are in the moment. Okay, we spend a lot of times looking at what we call the ‘big picture,’ or this futuristic picture of something that is a narrative that we’re writing in our head. But it’s not really what our needs are, if we can identify what the needs are that we have right now with what’s going on, and our partners can help us to meet those needs, then we start to feel connected with each other, then we start to feel trust to start to build up again. And trust is one of those things that it takes. It takes a while. It takes not only just the words, but it takes the actions. And it takes that feeling of connection and that feeling that your partner is listening to you, they’re empathetic with you, they’re connecting with you. They’re not fixing you or shaming you, or guilting you, but they’re hearing you and meeting your needs.
[21:27] Ashley James: There’s so many different methods out there for family counseling, for couples counseling. Why did you resonate with the Gottman method the most?
[21:39] Michelle Elsdon: Well, we really like the fact that it’s science based. And so there’s 45 years of research in the methodology of the Gottman work and you know, they studied couples over 10 years and did 3000 couples in this what they called the ‘Love lab.’ And so they had these couples come in and they monitored them. It was basically like a bed and breakfast type situation and they would come in and they would hook them up to EKGs, and do blood work. And then they also had like these scientists behind like a two way mirror that we’re taking notes of their responses to each other, and how they were acting together. And they could leave, of course, and come back because it was a weekend that they did this. But I think from that research, it really built those seven principles of what was working for the couples. And so they kind of had what they called the masters and the disasters after this whole workshop or work that they did. And so the masters were the ones that they kind of pull these seven principles from. And so we really resonated with those. You know, Shane and I in our marriage, we’re doing a lot of those things. And so it really made sense to us that when we read about it, it was something that…
[23:12] Shane Elsdon: Something watching us.
[23:13] Michelle Elsdon: Yeah.
[23:15] Shane Elsdon: Some of the stuff we read was like, “Hey, this is what we said that these guys have been following us.” But you know, that’s the whole thing. Like Michelle was saying, that’s what the masters came from. So they didn’t have these seven things that they taught the masters to do. What it was, is in watching these couples, they found out that these were the seven things that they were doing. They didn’t know that these were the right things to do. They found out that these were the things that they were doing.
[23:41] Ashley James: That sounds a lot like neuro linguistic programming, where Richard Bandler and John Grinder looked at different therapies and tried to find what really works. Like Virginia Satir’s method and Milton Erickson, and they were looking for what really, really works and then they would model it. So what you’re saying is that Gottman and the Love Lab, was looking at amazing couples that had great marriages, and then they found the seven commonalities. And if they could model that and teach it to the disaster couples and disaster couples could transform their marriages. Is that what you’re saying?
[24:20] Shane Elsdon: And the idea is that, you know, just like we go through, and we show the six signs of divorce, that is written in the Gottman’s book, and a lot of times when we’re doing that couples will read through and they’ll think, “Oh, my God. We’re doing all six of these things.” Or, “We’re doing five of these things.” And that’s okay. That doesn’t mean that you’re doomed, and you’re going to be divorced and it’s there’s no hope for you. You’re doing the first step and coming to counseling or coming to a workshop and identifying that, wow, these are the things that we’re doing. These are the things that are creating these problems in a relationship. And so now we can look at, so what are the ways we needed to change in order to have a better relationship? How can we open up to each other in this new way? And again, if you’re 50 years old, and this is the first time of doing this, you’ve been living with this habit for 50 years. You’ve been doing these, this way. If you’ve been married for 20 years, you’ve been living for 20 years doing these habits. So to come into a workshop or to counseling and to think that you’re going to have a session, here’s the tool, now go do it, and don’t make a mistake, that’s not going to happen. Okay, you’re going to make mistakes, but the idea is you have the tools. Now we just need to practice the tools, keep using the tools over and over and refine them as we move down our relationship. Learning new ways to do things.
[25:52] Ashley James: I like that your method has each couple take 100% responsibility for themselves. And in looking at themselves and bettering themselves and also putting that tattoo on their head, you know, ‘what do you need right now?’ And if each couple can take 100% responsibility, then it feels really good. Because I think that’s concern over time it’s like, “I’m doing more than my spouse.” Or you know, “I’m putting more in and they’re not.”Or, “I’m loving them more, and they’re not.” Or, “My needs are being met and his or hers are.” And so going in and going, “Okay, wipe the slate, we’re both going to take 100% responsibility.” I really like that. That also helps to build that trust, I think if both can can say, “I’m willing to commit.” When you were talking about friendship, I was almost crying because I’m my husband and I have this thing that we developed early in our relationship where if one of us was upset, the other one would try to make the other one laugh. I mean, in a way that honors them, right? And in a way that helps to make light of the situation. And then once the person is not about any more than we can talk it through and work it out. And it’s just like that was part of our friendship.
[27:09] Shane Elsdon: Right.
[27:09] Ashley James: Right. Because you can do that with a really good friend. Like you said, the friend you went to college with and barbecue every Wednesday with, you know, you can do little jabs at each other and joke with each other. And if something heated happens, you guys can you know what I mean?
[27:23] Shane Elsdon: Repair attempts. So humor is a great repair attempt. Repair attempts are when; one, you can see your partners in a place. So you use a repair attempt to help them or when you and your partner get off track. Say you’re having a discussion or an argument about a particular subject, and you start to get off track. When you get off track with that the key to the masters is, is that they use repair attempts to get things back on the track, to bring it back to what the actual discussion was about. And the idea is to try to keep the problem about the problem and not about making it personal with each other. So that’s one of the things that we will oftentimes do with couples is we will ask them to remove the words ‘you’ and ‘your’ from their vocabulary when they’re discussing about problems. When you’re discussing an issue of what needs to be done, or what your feelings are, take those words out. First off, it slows you way down, you have to slow way down and think about how you’re saying this, and you can keep the focus on that. But one of the things I did want to go back to was, when it comes to friendship, we believe that friendship is the basis of a good relationship. But one of the things that we also really believe in our couples and this is going to sound, I’m going to make all the listeners out there kind of jump in shock for a second here. But one of the things that we like our couples to do is we like our couples to have an affair when they’re married.
[29:08] Ashley James: An affair?
[29:09] Shane Elsdon: An Affair. Yeah.
[29:11] Ashley James: Like a sexual affair with someone else?
[29:13] Shane Elsdon: No, we wanted you to have it with your partner. This is the thing that we feel is lacking. We fall into love with our partner, we get married and we become best friends and we count on love. Love is that safety. love is that feeling that we come together, you can come home, you know that your spouse is going to be there, you can count on them, you rely on that being there, you become complacent with it. Because it’s accountable. It’s just there. What happens though, is we have a tendency with this friendship – is we have a tendency to lose desire. Desire is the opposite of love. It is not stable, it is not safe, it’s just the opposite. It’s unstable. It’s passion. It’s adventurous. It’s spontaneous. That is what we need to keep alive in our marriages. And that’s the part that fall short. So we ask our couples to date each other. But when we have them go out on a date, we want them to take one date a week. And during that time we say when you go out with your spouse, I’ll say husband and wife here, when you take your wife out on the date, we want you to take her out as your girlfriend, not as your wife.
[30:40] Ashley James: So like, take the rings off?
[30:43] Shane Elsdon: You know what, it’s funny.
[30:44] Michelle Elsdon: If you wanna play that way.
[30:45] Shane Elsdon: If you want to play that way, you can. But when we when you go out, we don’t want you to talk about your kids, the bills, the house, you know all the things that are caught up in your marriage. Instead go out like you did when you first met. Go out talk about where you’re going to be in the next three years, talk about if you go anywhere in the world, where would you want to go and why? Be adventurous, go make out, go have a picnic. Do those things like you used to do when you first were together. Rekindle the desire in the relationship. And we all do have this kind of multiple personality and the way that we handle our relationships. I mean, you’re not the same person sitting here with the mic in this job as you are when you’re in the room with your you know, child or when you’re at home, being a wife and a mom. There’s a difference of how we do that, we put on our work clothes, we go to the office and we become the work person and we handle that. Well, it’s the same thing in a relationship, we get this complacency where we go back in and we become the husband or the wife. And that’s what we do. And we become, like I said consistent with that. And that’s great because there’s safety in that, that what makes us feel safe.
[32:01] Ashley James: But it’s not sexy.
[32:02] Shane Elsdon: It’s not sexy. And it keeps us feel safe. It keeps us in this spot to where we start forgetting about things and we lose certain parts of it. Again, we do have that safety love of each other. You know, we’ve been married for 20 years, we love each other, we have that. But we start to lose some of that passion and desire. So if we keep it alive, I personally think you should do one day to week where you are boyfriend and girlfriend for that date. And no, I’m not saying you have to take off your ring. If that works for you then go for it. But I’m saying that you act in that way. We’re going out, you court each other. You know, you send your husband a little note about your date that you’re going to have tomorrow night, you send him a flirt full little text and tell him that kind of stuff that you want to do. You know, and spend maybe a weekend a month where you take off. Michelle and I will go out and we actually will in a playful way we will go out to the car and when we start our weekend away date and we’ll act like we’ll do this little like striptease where we take off of our husband and wife clothes and we throw those in the garage and we put on our boyfriend and girlfriend clothes and we get in the car, we go away for the weekend. And we are boyfriend and girlfriend. We don’t talk about the kids. We don’t talk about the bills or the house or the office or any of that stuff. We just go and we have fun. We do the things like we did when we were younger, we explore each other in a new way. And we keep that part vital and new. And that’s what I believe husband and wives really need to do. And it’s amazing to me to watch couples when they come in and we give them the spice and just like your eyes got really big. When I said have an affair, you’re like what, wait a second.
[33:45] Ashley James: This is not that kind of podcast.
[33:49] Shane Elsdon: “I got an idiot in here, what is he talking about?” You know, but the idea is to have that affair with your spouse, have that moment where you let go of that and you keep that passion and desire going. And that’s what we want to do and we want to see. And when we see our couples, when they start holding that, when they start having that kind of fun and they start bringing things back together, we start to find that couples really start to interact better. And it’s amazing. You know, when we talk to our couples about having sex with each other, and we open up and talk about sexuality with our couples – when they start having those kinds of interactions with each other. And I’m not saying that sex is the answer to everything. It’s not. But it sure does help bring couples together.
[34:35] Ashley James: Why? Why is that? I mean sex isn’t sex isn’t love. And that’s something that women, I think all women around the world keep telling their husbands. Because I think men are very physical, and they associate love and sex but I could just be too serious, be me.
[34:51] Shane Elsdon: I joke and say women are like ovens. Men are like microwaves. Women need to be, like an oven they need to be preheated. Men are like microwaves, you just have to press the button. Okay. And the problem, I believe with sex and in general with the couples is, you know, typically when a couple goes into the bedroom for sex, they go into the room and the male is already excited and he’s there if he has an erection. He’s already at about a six on a one to 10 he’s at a six when he walks in the room and he easily gets to the 10 and that’s over. When the woman gets into the room, she comes into the room about a two. So she needs to be warmed up. She needs to be brought up. The idea behind this is to start… I don’t know if you’ve ever heard Esther Perel. She often talks about this – foreplay. We’ll ask couples when does foreplay start in your relationship? And oftentimes, they say when we walk in the bedroom, or when we get into bed, and it’s those couple of activities that we do right before sex and as she stated, and I agree completely. Foreplay starts right after your last orgasm. That’s when foreplay starts. It’s sending each other the texts the ‘I love you’ the ‘thinking of you,’ ‘you look really sexy this morning when drool was running down your cheek onto the pillow.’ You know, it’s ‘you look good in the shower.’ It’s walking into a meeting and sending a text, ‘Hey, I missed you.’ It’s coming up behind your spouse and giving him a kiss and asking if you can help him cook dinner, do the dishes. It’s being flirt full, that’s the foreplay that gets things going, that’s what brings us up into that mood to go.
And that’s what’s lacking a lot of times, which I believe is why a lot of women feel the way that you were starting to explain. So the idea is, and again, I want to go back, I’m not saying that sex is the cure for everything. But I am saying that when you look at couples that come in, that are having sex, and who have a good healthy sex life, they come in with a good working format with each other to work with each other in a way that they can interact and get through a lot of their issues and problems.
[37:15] Ashley James: What about when one of the people in the relationship or both has had trauma – sexual trauma in their past? And that impedes them from having that deep connection with their spouse?
[37:31] Michelle Elsdon: Well. I think, first of all, we’ve run across some people who haven’t really shared that information with their spouse, and so then it’s very confusing to the spouse on what’s happening or why they’re avoiding sex. And so I think the first step is trying for that person to make sure that they’ve been able to work through it and get counseling and kind of understand why they feel the way they do and to kind of get better within themselves first. And I think that that’s been amiss on some people’s part where they’ve just tried to push it down and kind of stuff it way inside. And so they think that it doesn’t bother them, but really it does.
[38:16] Ashley James: And their spouse can then take it personally like they feel inadequate, but it’s really the other person has insecurities because they’ve gone through trauma. But that’s why, like you’re saying they need to share with their spouse.
[38:33] Michelle Elsdon: And some people think that it doesn’t bother them. Like it was a long time ago, it was in the past, it doesn’t bother me. But it is kind of spewing out in little pieces and in avoidance and not wanting to have sex. And they don’t realize that that’s really what’s happening. So that’s kind of the first step. And then the next step would be working with each other. I mean, you don’t have to have intercourse to be connected and have sex. So maybe you start out with some sensate or just cuddling, so that it’s not so dramatic for somebody who’s had that experience that they’re having a hard time with.
[39:16] Ashley James: What was the first thing you said?
[39:17] Michelle Elsdon: Sensate. So it’s like where you kind of touch each other’s arm and kind of rub in like circles. You know, it’s kind of like a massage technique in a way except instead of it. You know, typically when you think of massage, it’s like on the back. It’s more like maybe on the arm, you know, you’re just kind of lightly touching.
[39:38] Shane Elsdon: It can be over all parts. In the office, we will have clients that we will sometimes just give them, like I said, we’ll do a little role play where we’ll give them an example of where we just do it on the arm, you know, it’s just we learned to touch each other. So, again, when we talk about sex, of course, everybody wants to go to the you know, penile-vaginal intercourse, and that’s the sex. Sex isn’t just that. Sex for a lot of people can be a lot of different things. So first, it’s to identify what is sex to a couple. So we have couples and for instance, like the [inaudible 40:15] have the saucer cards. And if you look, there’s one, two, and three pepper and if you look at the one pepper is often for some people, sex to them and getting back into sex can be maybe, you know, sitting under a blanket holding hands while they watch Netflix together. And that’s their night of sex. And for somebody else, maybe it’s going to an adult shop and buying a toy and being playful with each other. Sex is to whatever it is, it’s you as a couple. So it doesn’t have its confinement of this is what it is to be sexual. And the idea is to identify what sex is between the two of you and then to start working from there.
The idea of just learning how to touch each other and talk about each other and to learn that. And this is something that we find with couples, and you were asking about, like somebody who’s had sexual assault or something in their past. We will do a sexual assessment with them and we will find out a lot of sexual history. And it’s amazing when couples start to open up about it and it really will change even the partner. The partner who used to feel that, “Oh, you just don’t love me.” You know, “I’m trying to do this, and you just don’t want to be with me.” And then when they start to understand what’s going on, they can have a whole new look at how to approach things, how to identify different ways of dealing with stuff. And that’s where you start to learn about your partner. It’s amazing to me at how much partners don’t know about each other. We have clients that have been married for many, many, many years. I’m talking many years, and still cannot ask each other for sex. They just don’t understand how to do so. They aren’t able to talk to each other about it. And interestingly, there was some studies done, we did actually a study few years ago. Public displays of affection. There you go, PDA. Sorry, I couldn’t think of the name. All of a sudden I went blank. During that we were looking at some other studies. And we found out that there were some studies out that showed relationship happiness. And relationship happiness was they looked at couples that had great communication, but horrible sex. And then there were couples that had great sex, but horrible communication. And interestingly, the study showed that the couples that had great sex and horrible communication actually scored higher on relationship satisfaction than the couples who had great communication, horrible sex. But interestingly, there was another group, the group that scored the highest of all was the couples that had great sexual communication. Those couples scored the highest on relationship satisfaction and think about it, if you can talk to your partner about your sexual needs, probably going to have a lot less hard time telling them you forgot to mail the Visa bill, you know?
So to be able to talk about those things, and we all have an erotic self, we all have an erotic person in us that drives us. And it drives us through our every day who we are. Again, I use the word erotic and we think in the bedroom in that, but who are you erotically in other aspects of your life? Maybe somebody you know, when they give speeches, they become empowered, they feel at their fullest. And that’s an erotic state that you’re putting yourself in. When you get into that erotic state, who do you become? And learn to share with your partner and how the two of you can then manifest that into your relationship, of having this good relationship together, where you’re sharing with each other.
[44:10] Ashley James: I want to know how long have you guys been dating each other?
[44:14] Michelle Elsdon: Well, we’ve been dating each other since the day we met, really.
[44:19] Ashley James: You never stopped? You never had a low time in your marriage or did you know about the Gottman method before you got married? I mean, has your marriage always been great?
[44:29] Shane Elsdon: Well, our marriage we feel has been great. We didn’t know of the Gottman method before but as I said, remember the couples that went through and became that were labeled the masters, they didn’t know what the Gottman method, either. They were practicing these techniques. And that was why I think it was kind of interesting when we were reading it. It was kind of like, “Hey, they’re following us.” It’s because they were reading things that we were saying like, “Hey, we do this.” “This is what we believe.” “This is what we’ve been telling people. “You need to be like this.” “You need to be doing this kind of stuff.” And that’s what the tools were. And that’s actually what they found in that Love Lab.
[45:08] Ashley James: So the two of you were the lucky couple that were naturally doing so many things right. So many things that make a marriage work. My husband and I have always felt like we were a team. We’ve been entrepreneurs together. So we run a business together like you guys, right? And we’ve been best friends and been married and it feels like marriage is more than just one level. Right? It’s many levels of intimacy and connection. Share with me before you guys knew about the Gottman method, you were just having a great marriage, did you look around and see that you were so different from other couples? It doesn’t sound like you had to work on it. Can you just share a bit about the quality of your marriage before you sort of consciously thinking about the things that you’re doing right to make a good marriage?
[46:10] Michelle Elsdon: Yeah. I think for the two of us, we really take the time to listen to each other and we always have. And I think just having that presence of mind to listen to the other person and try to understand their point of view and to do some of those repairs like Shane was talking about. He’s really great with humor, which makes me laugh. Sometimes even in an argument, he’ll just pipe out like, “Give me a kiss.” And I’m like, “What?” He’s like, “Give me a kiss.” And it’s like, okay. Yeah, and it just changes my whole perspective. So humor and some of those things, I think just kind of came naturally for the two of us. And I think that that’s a lot of it. Just taking the time to listen, to have fun together, to not take life so seriously. And also, one thing that we teach in the workshops is keeping a positive perspective about your partner. And I think that that’s where people can kind of get in a problem – is when you start down a negative path. And so you start thinking of all the bad things that you don’t like about your spouse, or your partner, instead of thinking of all of the positive things of why you got together with them in the first place. And so when you get into that negative perspective, where that’s all you can think about is, you know, he never picks up his socks, or she never helps me with this, and then you build up this ugly resentment. And so remembering to stay positive with each other and think of all of those reasons why when you first met, like, why you fell in love with each other and to keep that fresh. It’s really important.
[48:04] Ashley James: It’s really easy to accumulate over the course of a marriage, sort of a tab of all the wrongdoings, all the things that they don’t do, kind of like having a bad roommate. Right? Because that’s what it is to a lot of people in a bad marriage. It’s kind of like having a roommate that doesn’t pick up after themselves in a way.
[48:30] Shane Elsdon: That’s one of the things that we do. Remember, I told you there’s those six signs where you’re heading towards divorce. One of the last signs is what we call ‘rewriting history.’ And that’s where you start going back in your relationship, and you start looking at details. And then remembering them in a negative perspective, you start remembering the negative parts. If you think about everything that you do, there’s a positive and a negative outlook that could be seen in all of them – even going out having a good time, someone can sit there and start to look at, “Oh, but it was so expensive.” And oh, you know… and you can find the things to look negative. And that’s when we get a negative perspective with our relationship. Like what Michelle was saying, when we get into that spot, and we start rewriting history, we start looking back at things where instead of seeing it as the fun we saw it, we see it as the bad parts of how it was. And when that happens, that’s the part where we have to change. We have to start using some tools to regain that positive change, and start having positive thought processes about our partner. About our partner and about our relationship. And I think, you asked questions like how are you guys in your relationship stuff? Part of it is we’ve always just kind of kept our relationship a priority. And it’s not something we work at, but it also just kind of sometimes we just have fun. We just try to have fun, even with the kids and as much chaos can go on, we just had fun with doing it. And that’s a big part of it, having fun, being spontaneous. Being spontaneous with each other, keeping things alive.
And again, remember, when I went back and talked about the affair, I talked about the difference between love and desire. And that’s where desire also comes in, is when you’re having that fun, you’re making each other a priority. And you’re you’re seeing each other from that other light. We’re always going to have the fall back to. We’re always going to be able to go home, and, “Oh, gosh. We got to get the dishes done.” “We got to get the kids in bed.” “We’ve got to get that.” But then we can look at the fun parts of it, where we can have the little funs along the way. And that’s the part where I think it’s really important. And that’s the part that falls out in couples, or quite honestly, we have a lot of couples that it’s not that it fell out. It’s that no one ever told them to do that. And so they got into the relationship, they start having a relationship, and they’re doing the work of a relationship. But they forgot about the whole idea about having fun with the relationship. And we get caught up because so many things divide us. We get married, we are together, we are right there together. And of course, we’re on the radio, so you can’t see the visualization of my hands coming apart. But we get married, we have a kid. And that separates us a little bit, it gives us a cushion in between, it gives us something to focus on. And we get a career and then we get a mortgage. And then we get car payments, and we get everything else. And by the time you know, 20 years goes by, we’re standing out here at arm’s length apart from each other, and we’ve had this cushion that we’ve patted each other on. But then all of a sudden we retire, the kids go off to college, or they go into their own relationships, and we’re both standing there basically like strangers. And it’s amazing to me how many empty nesters we have come in. Because now they don’t have that cushion, that focus that they always kept themselves on. Now, they’re just looking at each other. And they’re strangers. That’s why we believe you have that affair. You keep your girlfriend or your boyfriend – you’re husband and wife, but you keep that part alive as well. So that when the kids are gone, when the careers are over, you’re standing there with someone you know. Your girlfriend and boyfriend, you’re standing there together. And that means also that the husband and wife, the other personality in you also is familiar with each other. Because those different personalities are still in the same you. And so you have a better understanding of each other when those emptiness times come together.
I mean, Michelle and I are now empty nesters, that’s when we moved up here to Bellevue as we became empty nesters. And so now we’re up here and we’re having fun. We’re still doing all kinds of fun stuff, we go out together, we kayak and we do those things together. Now it’s important and it’s okay to have your own individual things. Michelle’s an artist, and she likes to paint and do stuff like that. And I can’t draw stick figures, you know, to save my life. But it’s okay to have things and to do things together… I mean, individually, but it’s really nice when you can do things together. Michelle loves art. She likes to see museums, to be honest with you. If I never set foot in another museum again, it wouldn’t be too soon. They don’t ever put those black velvet Elvis Presley pictures and dogs playing pool up, you know, so what’s the point, right? But, you know, Michelle and I went to Italy a couple years ago, and she has all these pictures of the art. I literally have like 600 pictures of Michelle taking pictures.
[54:08] Ashley James: You’re his art.
[54:11] Shane Elsdon: You know, I enjoyed. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed it. And that, but I also got to enjoy seeing the art through her eyes. And that was what was really interesting. I enjoy riding a Harley, I like to get out and Michelle rides with me on the Harley, she gets to see the world through my eyes on that. And so we get to enjoy those things together. You know, I mean, if I was to pass away tomorrow, I doubt Michelle would drive a Harley. But we do it together because we enjoy it. And it’s not I have to, it’s because we enjoy doing those things and seeing our partner appreciate those things. And that’s the part that I think is important. You don’t have to, “Oh, great. Michelle likes to paint, I gotta go take paint classes, and I gotta learn how to paint.” No, I can still throw paint on the screen and not be able to identify what it is, but I can have fun watching her, and that’s what’s important.
[55:05] Ashley James: A friend of mine in marriage counseling said she felt like the therapist was always siding with her husband. And the two of them were kind of beating her up. And I imagine it’s a very different scenario working with you as a couple – the two of you, because you’ve got the male and the female, the wife and the husband perspective as counselors coming in and helping that couple so it’s more balanced. Do you ever find that, Michelle, you’re taking the wife side and your husband’s taking the husband’s side? Do you ever see that, like you just see totally different perspectives in an argument?
[55:40] Michelle Elsdon: Yeah, we do sometimes. And I can understand what the woman is saying, and Shane can kind of identify more from the man’s perspective where he’s coming from. But interestingly, sometimes it’s the opposite. Where the guy will connect with me more, and the woman will connect with Shane more. And I think sometimes that has to do with our personalities. I’m a bit more of an introvert and shades a bit more of an extrovert. And so in understanding that thought process when couples come in, and there’s situations where maybe the introvert is needing more individual time or quiet time, and the extrovert doesn’t quite understand, like I can understand better, because I’m a little bit more similar to that. So I think that’s another way that Shane and I sort of balance each other out is because we are a little bit different personality as well. And so we can kind of see our couples from that perspective as well.
[56:46] Ashley James: I definitely recommend listeners, if they want amazing counseling, to see you guys. Do you only work in person, or can people do Skype sessions with you?
[56:59] Shane Elsdon: We primarily just work in-person. We will do some Skype sessions with people in the state of Washington, like if they’re from Yakima or Spokane or something like that. We’ve had a few couples that have called us for Skype sessions. But primarily, we do it just in session. We like to keep things local. And we’ve had clients that have driven here from a lot of different places. We have clients that drive up from Olympia. We had one client that called and set an appointment where they were in Idaho, and they had called and came over for the weekend to see us. And the workshops that we do, this workshop that’s coming up, we have people coming from Canada, people coming from Oregon, people come from all over the place. We get some locals as well, but we get a lot of people from a lot of different areas. And we do it usually at a hotel, we’ll have the conference room where we do it and then we get rooms at the hotel where the people coming to the workshop can get a room there and be able to stay for the weekend and make and make a weekend out of it. Make a date weekend out of it and have fun and get away from the kids. So they can come in and learn on Saturday and have an affair with each other that night and then come back into session on as husband and wife on Sunday.
[58:27] Ashley James: I want to talk a bit more about your workshop weekends. And I also want to talk about your Power Weekend. They’re very different. I want to talk about both of those. And then I’ve got a questions about the Gottman steps. So first, how many times a year do you do these workshops?
[58:53] Shane Elsdon: We do them about probably six times a year. Yeah. Every other month? I mean, we kind of are practicing with them up here in the sense that we found that some months, people just don’t go to them, and other months that they do. So I would say we do about six a year. Yeah, that every other month. We have one scheduled in August, at the beginning of August. And I think our next one is October that we have set up. And then I think we also have another one in November afterwards. So kind of a back to back one.
[59:28] Ashley James: And my friend highly, highly recommends it. She loved it. How long have you guys been teaching these workshops together?
[59:36] Michelle Elsdon: We’ve been teaching them for two years now. So we’ve really had fun doing them. And our workshops are a little on the small side. And which we really enjoy because we’re able to focus on the people that attend and give some individual attention. So when we do the breakout, so we have like so much your time. And then we have, sometimes where we show you a tool and Shane and I will show you how not to do it, and then how to do it like a role play situation. And then everybody will do a breakout. And they’ll go with their partner and go into the lobby and stuff. And then we walk around and kind of help people learn how to use the tool, make sure they’re doing it right. And if they have questions or struggles then we can help them out. So it’s nice for us to have a manageable group that we are able to go and see everyone. So that’s really kind of unique, I think with some of the other workshops where they’re a little bit bigger, and it’s harder.
[1:00:43] Ashley James: Could you share some stories of success? Obviously, not talking about names. But can you share some outcomes that have really excited and surprised you from people taking your workshop?
[1:00:58] Michelle Elsdon: Yeah. We’ve had some people that come to the workshop, and they’re there just really paying attention. And we never know, for sure what people’s thoughts are, while they’re there. Like some people are tired or, they’ve driven a long way. We’ve gotten emails and responses from people about, they go back home, and they start doing the tools, and they’re so excited, because it really is life changing. And we’ve helped a few couples that have come to the workshop that were it was sort of like their last ditch effort – where they were either going to get divorced, or they were going to keep… Yeah, even hired attorneys. And so I think that to me was really just amazing. That workshop was able to help the couple enough that they were willing to give each other a second chance and stay together. And some of the couples had been married 25, 30 years. I think that’s really cool that they were able to come and learn the tools and really make a commitment to each other to do them and have some happy results.
[1:02:20] Shane Elsdon: Several couples, the workshop was the opening that they needed to enable them to come to counseling. So we’ve had several couples that have went to the workshop, learn the tools, and then called us a month later and said, “Hey, can we come see you guys?” And then they come in and see us for counseling, and to continue on. And that is actually where you’re going to get your best results. Michelle likes to say when you go to the workshop, we put a lot of information out and she says, “You know, it’s like drinking from a firehose because you’re just being overwhelmed with a lot of information.” And the tools that you get, you get a workbook, there’s the exercises we go through with them, we help you. But then when you go home, oftentimes we will forget or will miss some of the more intellectual intent of the workshop, or of the tool that’s being used. It can sometimes cause more arguments or more fights, so then coming back to us. And and then sometimes, you know, these tools that we have, they’re great for getting us through there. But if you have some history that’s underneath and behind it, and sometimes we have to dig into that, and we’ll have to get into that history. But that’s where we change roles, though the role at the workshop is we’re education, and so we’re just doing psycho education, we’re not there as your therapist. When you come into counseling afterwards, then we’ve changed the roles and we become therapist. And that’s where we’ll change the roles in that part and move into that aspect.
[1:04:06] Ashley James: So you have these workshops, and then you do counseling individually, people can come to you on a weekly or monthly basis. But then you have these Power Weekends, and I find them to be so unique. Which one of you wants to talk about the Power Weekends?
[1:04:20] Michelle Elsdon: I can start. So the Power Weekends are really more of an individualized attention on one couple. And so, there might be a couple who lives out of state that wants to come and work with us for an intensive two or three day period. And so we set aside the time to work with couples in that format. And we go over a lot of these tools that we’ve been talking about, and also find out what’s going on, if they have some individualized things that they also want to focus on them, we can do that. And then we also have some couples who are just super busy, like they’re traveling all the time, their schedules don’t connect, and they have a really hard time coming in to counseling.
[1:05:10] Ashley James: On a weekly basis.
[1:05:10] Michelle Elsdon: Yeah. On a weekly basis, just because of their work schedules and stuff like that. And so they asked to have just these intensive Power Weekends where they come in and really work on something that they need to work on. And then of course, we share with them, the tools that are maybe specific to their needs. And it’s really individualized to the couple. So with the workshops, it’s a little bit more broad for the people that are there. But for the Power Weekends, it’s really individualized to that couple and we set up like before we even do the weekend, we send out a questionnaire and have them fill it out. And then we have some assessments and then we do some individual phone calling or in-office appointments, depending on if they live locally or not. And then we do the weekend, and then we follow up with some sessions as well.
[1:06:14] Ashley James: Do you notice that you get better results, when couples do the Power Weekend versus just counseling over time, or is it really just depends on the couple?
[1:06:24] Shane Elsdon: It depends on the couple and the Power Weekends are kind of a specialty tool. I don’t necessarily see them as in place of, they’re because of a specific. Like Michelle was saying there either one, there are a couple that wants to come and work with us and they’re from out of state or something. So they come to us, or it’s that high task executive that does a lot of traveling, and they’re really caught part, where their schedules just won’t line up. And so we’re trying to give them, there is much more of an intense focus on what it is that they’re trying to work on. So that’s why we give so many assessments and questionnaires going beforehand to come into it. And you know, it’s not one that is going to be something that if like, say there’s affairs going on, or there’s some addictions or something that’s going on. Those we would probably not take them in for that kind of a Power Weekend, that’s going to take some more counseling besides just what we could do in that Power Weekend. So basically there’s like an interview process to find out that this will work for you. And there’s some people that it just won’t work for you, or I mean, it would be a waste of time, you know, really to come in and do that. And there’s things that have to be focused on before they can get to that point.
[1:08:01] Ashley James: Give me the format of what the Power Weekend looks like for a couple.
[1:08:05] Shane Elsdon: Well, that’s sort of individually. So it depends, again on what they’re coming in for. But on our basic, on our three-day one, it’s going to come in, we’re going to meet them Friday. Usually, the four of us go away somewhere. So we usually go to some type of retreat, we will go over the process of what it was that they are trying to get from there from this weekend. And then we start with them, let’s just say on Friday, we’ll start with them on Friday. And we will take them in the direction that the assessments and their questionnaires have shown us where they want to go. And then we incorporate tools that are needed and the counseling that’s needed for that. But the thing about the Power Weekend is each one of them is individual to the couple. So there’s not really a directive of saying like, well, this is how we do it, it’s because it’s really directed towards the couple and the intensity of what they need.
[1:09:11] Ashley James: So it’s not that they’re being in a counseling session the entire weekend.
[1:09:16] Shane Elsdon: Well, no. I mean, it’s it’s six or seven hours a day. I mean, we’ll take a break, we have lunch, there’s dinner, there’s homework that they do in the evenings. We are there so that we also stay at the same place. So if during the homework, if there’s some roadblocks that come up, then they can get us as well. And we’ll help them through those roadblocks. But it’s all three days. And like I said, there is a time where they’ll go to dinner, they’ll go on a date, they’ll go to dinner, afterwards, they’re going to go home, they’re going to work on some of the homework then we’re back in there in the morning again. And we work on it all day long. Taking a break here and there going to lunch, those kind of things, but we work on it, a good six hours every day.
[1:10:11] Ashley James: You know, and as Gottman deciphered the seven things that really successful couples do. As you’ve been doing these Power Weekends with couples, helping them to transform their relationships, what insights have you seen, or what like aha moments have you had that has strengthened your ability to counsel people and help them build stronger relationships?
[1:10:39] Shane Elsdon: So I think we probably get more insight from our counseling sessions than the power weekend sessions. Just because of the intensity of that we’re in, in a Power Weekend. A Power Weekend is pretty intense. The sessions that we see where we’re getting the C people that are working through stuff on every day, I think some of the biggest insight, is what you were asking, I think some of the biggest insight that comes from it is probably the intensity of what people are not willing to work on the relationship. It’s amazing to me to watch people come into counseling, and yet not want to actually do the work. That even though they’re they’re coming into counseling, they’re putting in the time, or they’re putting in the time of coming to the session, they’re still not putting in the work into what it is that they’re working on. It’s it’s kind of like taking homework, and yet you’re given homework, you go home and you don’t do it.
[1:11:48] Michelle Elsdon: Yeah. We’ve seen couples that have come in that seem like a disaster. Those couples that I’m thinking of, they worked so hard with the homework, and they came in every week and talked about, what they were doing and how it was helping and it was amazing to watch the transformation. Where there’s been other couples that seemed like, “Oh, well, they just have a few little things that they need to work on.” But it didn’t seem to really get better. Because we would be like, “Well, how was the homework?” “Oh, we forgot to do it.” “Oh, we got busy with this, that and the other thing.” And so I think one of the most important things about coming to counseling is to really have that commitment to each other and that you’re putting your relationship first because that’s why you’re coming to counseling is to make it a priority. And if you can’t make it a priority, because you have the kids, things, and your work, and the house. Yeah, basically the excuses, that it’s sort of like wasting your money. Because like Shane said, it’s like going to college or something and never doing the work and then expecting to have a good result. You know?
[1:13:10] Ashley James: And that seems like not doing the homework sounds like a symptom of what they’ve already been doing which is which is not prioritizing their marriage. How do you how do you like slap them around and get them to prioritize their marriage?
[1:13:24] Michelle Elsdon: Well, we’re kind of like the teachers in the way of reminding them how important the homework is. And when they do the homework, maybe they have a week where they did it, and then we really can see a difference, and we talk about that. And wow, we can really see a difference in how you’re interacting with each other. It is amazing to watch them come into the counseling room, and they seem happier, and more connected. And then when there’s those weeks where they haven’t done the homework and some couples do really great. And then they just have a couple of weeks where they fall off. But you can really tell when they walk in the room, we’re like, “Uh-oh.” It looks like we haven’t had a good week, you know. So I think it’s the reward of the couple can see it themselves. When they do it, they’re like, wow, we can really tell a difference.
[1:14:23] Ashley James: It sounds like results based therapy.
[1:14:29] Shane Elsdon: As Michelle said, they can walk into the room, and we can just look and say like, “Yeah, they’ve been doing their homework.” You can just see it. And as she said, two or three weeks will go by and you’ll see him they’ll come in and it’s like, okay, they aren’t doing it right now. And you know, it’s that thought of like wow, it was working so good. We just decided we didn’t want to do it anymore. It’s kind of one of those feelings of like, Okay, what happened here? And again, there is that part of that commitment of where you’re making your priority something that’s going to be there, and relationships take work. I wish I could say they didn’t, but they do. Relationships do take work. You know, it’s like being a parent. It’s easy to become a parent. But it takes work to maintain and be a good parent, you have to be involved. And the same thing with a relationship, you have to be involved. If you want to maintain a relationship, you have to be involved, and you have to put in work to it.
[1:15:35] Ashley James: Well, now what about couples who are no longer together? I have several friends who are divorced, but that they have children, and they’ve chosen to be good parents and be good sort of team members to continue to have a friendship for their kids, because they have that common goal. Have you ever worked with couples that aren’t married anymore, but want to have good communication and be good parents?
[1:16:02] Shane Elsdon: We have had couples that have come in not quite to the extent I feel that the question is going with where they’ve been divorced for a couple of years, and they’re coming in. But we have had couples that have come in because they have decided they were done. They were getting a divorce, but they wanted to find out now how to do good co-parenting together. And so we’ve worked with them about that. We’ve worked with couples who as we said, they already had their Divorce Attorneys, when they came into us, they started working with us on their marriage. And as we have kind of point out to them – if you’re going to do this right, it’s going to take as much or more effort and work to co-parent apart as it will to parent together. Because if you’re truly going to be the parent you need to be for your child, it means that you still need to be respectful to your other partner, you know, we don’t want to be talking bad about our partners in front of our children, we want to be respectful to them. We want to teach our children how their mother or father should be treated so that they can have that same example set for them. And then it also means that when there’s additional parents get added into it, your partner gets remarried, you get remarried, now we have to have this same relationship with four of us instead of just two of us. So quite honestly, it’s just as hard or more work with getting divorced as it is staying together, if we’re really going to be co-parenting and good parents with each other. So there’s a lot of effort and work that goes into it in doing that. And in reality, when we add in the aspect of children into it, part of the thing is, is to understand that we need to teach our children how they need to be in a relationship. We’re giving them a good example of what it looks like. So we need our daughters to know how a man should treat them, and how they should treat the man. And we need our sons to know how they should treat a woman and how women should treat them.
And we do that by giving that as an example, as a husband and a wife. I have said this to many clients, we have never had a couple come in and sit down and say, “You know, my parents were so loving, and they got along so well. And they were always touching each other and kissing and laughing and talking and oh, I don’t even want to say what we heard coming from their room and all this kind of stuff. And I think that’s why I’m so screwed up.” We’ve never heard that. But we have had lots of couples come in that say, “Well, my parents shoot. I mean, I’ll be they had sex once because I’m here. I hardly can remember seeing them in the same room, let alone talking. They never talk, they were always arguing when they did talk and they fought, and I think that’s why I’m so screwed up.” We have seen that a lot. But we don’t ever see it the other way. And so, we try to help parents to understand that that’s the realm we have to be looking at too as we’re parenting – that we’re setting examples and teaching our children how to move into relationships as well.
[1:19:29] Ashley James: Speaking of which, I’d love for you guys to teach some or at least explain some of the steps of what Gottman discovered, what the disasters are doing. So we can identify it if we have that going on. And what are the, what was the other one?
[1:19:51] Michelle Elsdon: Masters.
[1:19:52] Ashley James: Disasters and masters.
[1:19:53] Shane Elsdon: So the seven steps that they were talking about is that what we find with the masters is that they build love maps. They share fondness and admiration, they share positive perspective, they have good conflict resolution, they know how to do conflict, they share dreams. And they also share purpose and meaning in life.
[1:20:26] Ashley James: What’s the love map?
[1:20:27] Shane Elsdon: The love maps are, these are the things that we have with each other. It’s how we know our partner, it’s what we know about our partners. So I like to think about like those Randy McNally maps, you know, think about a roadmap.
[1:20:42] Ashley James: Okay, the old school.
[1:20:47] Shane Elsdon: The old school. You know those paper things that we used to have? And even if you look on the GPS, so those bright red lines that are on the GPS on those maps, those are the big things, those are like I-5, the 405 – those are the big freeways. So those are the common easy things to think about. Those are knowing who your parents are, where you were born, what neighborhood you grew up in, what school you went to Then you have the smaller ones, the black highways, those are like Highway 2 or Highway 20. Those ones, those are a little smaller. Those are now I know maybe who your best friend was in school, what kind of classes you hated or didn’t like in college, what’s your favorite professor, those kind of things can we get down to this even smaller roads. And as we go, each one gets more personal; what your favorite foods are, what your favorite animal is, your favorite tree, favorite kind of flower. And we keep going until we get all the way down. And hopefully a couple has a roadmap that their love maps are so setup that they’ve got those dirt roads and back alleys. And that’s we know our sexual fantasies, we know what makes our partner tick and what turns them on, and those kind of things. And the thing about it is just like on your GPS or maps, they are constantly redoing them, your GPS constantly needs to be updated. And that’s because so does the love maps, things like where you were born, that’s not going to change, but your favorite food, I imagine your favorite food now is probably not the same as it was when you were in high school or the same when you were five.
So those things are changing; the things that you like, the things that you desire. Those are constantly changing oftentimes. We play the role play, we’ll do it like, “Oh your two best friends.” And your best friends can change. It’s like, “Oh, these are your two best friends.” “Well actually, no. They passed away a few years ago.” And as a partner, sometimes we don’t even know that because we’re not paying attention. So the idea is to constantly be touching base with each other, to check in with each other, keep familiar with each other. In relationships, it’s not the big things that have the biggest impact, it’s the small things. Those are what create the emotional bank account. And for some of us, we make a lot of withdraws out of the emotional bank account. I’m referring to myself there, you know, I can screw up real easy and, and really hurt that emotional bank account. So I constantly want to be putting into it. And those emotional bank accounts are the little things, they’re staying in touch with your partner, they’re keeping current on what they’re like, what’s going on in their life, it’s telling them I love you, it’s bringing them the little flower, it’s holding their hand when you’re walking down the street. Those are the things that add to that emotional bank account, that’s what really makes things happen in a relationship. Going to Hawaii, that’s great. It’s a big investmentment, it can have a real high payoff, but it doesn’t last. A week after your back and it’s forgotten. And and it doesn’t have that fulfillment into the relationship, like the little things do.
[1:24:15] Ashley James: What kind of little things do you give examples or suggest to couples who don’t really know where to start?
[1:24:23] Michelle Elsdon: I think it’s just paying attention to your partner and what they like. Maybe you’re going to the grocery store, and you pick up their favorite ice cream and bring it home as a treat. Or you stop by and get the dry cleaning that normally they get, but you do it as a favor. Or you pick up something around the house that you know will make their evening easier, or you draw a bath for your wife and have a glass of wine sitting there because she had a hard day at work. And when she called she told you on the phone or you know, so it’s just being thoughtful and paying attention to what’s going on with your partner. And little simple things like putting a sticky note on the mirror in the morning, if you leave before your partner and you put a little I love you or do a little hard in the steam and the shower. And it’s just sweet, fun little things. They don’t have to cost money. It’s just more about being thoughtful.
[1:25:30] Ashley James: And if both people are doing it to each other, then I can see how that would build the desire and make it more and more fun. Because it’s surprises, like you said, it’s these little things. But how romantic because they’re, they’re surprises. And examples are showing that the other person’s thinking of them. I’m sure you guys have heard of the love languages, this idea that some people need to be given gifts to know that they’re loved. And some people need to be touched to know that they’re loved. And some people need to be told. Have you seen that this is true? Do people know that they’re loved from all of these different things?
[1:26:09] Shane Elsdon: No. Definitely we see couples react with the love languages. And most people don’t know what their love language is and there are the five love languages. And that’s covered in the book that we talked about. And I think one of the important things,it doesn’t get in depth about on the love languages is knowing what your partner’s love languages as well. For instance, my love language is touch. And Michelle’s love language is words of affirmation. Okay. And so if Michelle wants to give me love, one of the things when she reaches out and holds my hand or when we’re in the car, and she caresses my ear, or puts her hand on my leg, or when we’re you know, sitting on the couch watching TV or something that she just puts her hand on me. I feel loved, that may make me feel loved. That really draws me into her. Now, if I want to give Michelle love, what do you think I probably do?
[1:27:08] Ashley James: You probably touch her.
[1:27:09] Shane Elsdon: I go over and I touch her. So I’m this pervert that’s groping her and hugging her and grabbing her. It’s like, “What are you doing? Gosh, why are you always doing this?” And until she understood that, “Oh, that’s his love language. Oh, he’s not being a pervert. He’s actually trying to share his love with me.” And then she can remind me, “Hey, I see what you’re doing. This is great.” But remember, my love language is words of affirmation. And so when Michelle is in a place, and I want to give her love, I need to remember to try to give her that love in her love language so that she can understand it, giving her those words of affirmation, touching her in that way. And it’s when we do that with each other, we’re more receptive. And it’s very interesting to watch it. Because when you do have those, identify your love language, and you do give your partner love with their love language. It’s interesting to watch how they react. It’s like, you go out and buy him some thousand dollar gift and they’re like, “Oh, thank you.” And then you give them this really heartfelt words of affirmation, and they’re in tears. It’s like, “Really?” I could have just told you that and saved 1000 bucks, you know? And for me, gifts is my lowest on the score. When I took the test. That’s my lowest. And quite honestly, when I get gifts, I feel uncomfortable. And it’s like, “Okay, how much thank you do I say?” “Did I say too much. Am I overdoing it? Am I not doing it enough?” I just feel awkward. And I don’t feel the love in it, you know? But like I said, when I’m sitting there and she starts scratching my head, it’s like, okay, what do you need? Well, what’s going on here? You know, it really touches. And so we do think that the love languages work. You were asking what are some of the small things, there is a tool that we use, and we teach all of our couples to do it, we teach them in the workshop, and we teach them in our sessions. And it’s a tool that comes out of the Gottman’s book also. And it’s the six hours of…
[1:29:13] Michelle Elsdon: Six Hour A Week is what we call it.
[1:29:17] Shane Elsdon: Yeah. Six Hour A Week Homework. And basically it’s a group of things to do that you and your partner are each responsible to do. And when you add it all up, it takes about six hours of time throughout the week. So it’s not any lump sum of six hours, it’s 20 seconds here, it’s six seconds here, it’s a 20 minute thing here. Doing those steps throughout the day really helps. And it’s amazing to watch couples, that you give them the assignment and we’ll just challenge and say, “Look, just go and do this for a week.” Just practice this for a week and come back and tell us that something didn’t change. And it’s amazing to see what it does.
[1:30:02] Ashley James: Can you share some of the homework with us?
[1:30:05] Shane Elsdon: So in the morning, we like our couples before you leave, in what we call the partings – before you part ways, so in the morning before you go off to work or your husband goes off to work, there’s three things that we want you to do. We want you to one, give each other a 20 second hug. Okay, 20 second hugs, releasing oxytocin in the brain. This is that bonding agent and this is what kind of draws us together. We want you to give each other a six second kiss. Now think about six seconds, that’s a real kiss. And then we want you to have basically a two minute conversation. But during this conversation we don’t want it to be while you’re brushing your teeth and he’s down making toasts in your hall or down the hall. We want you to actually stop. Take those two minutes time, stand in front of each other look each other in the eye. And it’s a simple conversation. What do you got going on today? Your partner shares for a minute what they got going on. Then they ask you, what about you what do you have going on today? This interaction with each other where the world stopped, you look each other in the eye and you share what’s going on with each other. Then we want you, when you get home after work within about a half hour after getting home. We want you to do another 20 second hug, a six second kiss and a 20 minute conversation where you’re going to de-escalate, you’re going to get rid of all the outside stress in the world. You know the garbage that went on at work, that horrible traffic on the 405, the stuff that you got in the mail, just all that stuff that eats on you or it could be positive you know you got on the 405 and it wasn’t a car you thought it was closed and it was such a great thing and then you won a lottery ticket and you got 500 bucks and you’re just bubbling with all this. If you think about like being a teapot, okay, a teapot, if it doesn’t have a way to vent it’s going to blow up. So that’s what we are. We’re like a teapot we have this this outside stress it keeps building in us and building us and we have to keep spouting it out and spouting out. But if that’s plugged up, it’s going to blow, so this de-escalating conversation just pops the lid off of it and let’s all of that pressure out. So you have this 20 minute de-escalating conversation and with our clients in session, Michelle and I will role play it for them. We’ll show them what not to do, how not to do this conversation and then we show them how to do it. We do this at the workshop as well. And then we want you to spend about five minutes a day sharing with each other affection.
We want you to share with each other sending each other little text, “Hey, thinking of you. I love you.” You know maybe a quick phone call when you’re walking, “Hey, I gotta walk into an office but I just want to let you know I was thinking of you.” As Michelle said, leaving a note on the mirror for your partner, leaving something in the lunch pail or something like that it’s doing that. And it’s not one partner doing it and another partner reacting to it. It’s one partner doing it, the other partner reacting. That partner doing and the first partner reacting – it’s you’re both doing this back and forth. It’s sharing affection with each other. It’s holding hands when you walk out to the car, it’s when you sit on the couch, as we said touch each other , a little pat on the butt as you’re walking down the hallway, the little kiss with each other, the flirtatious things that we do with each other throughout the day. Spend four or five minutes doing that throughout the day.
Then we want you to take a weekly date, two hours a week, we want you to go out on a date. This is the part that we say this is a little different for us, is that we say we want you to go out as boyfriend and girlfriend. We want you to leave everything else from the marriage behind and go out as boyfriend and girlfriend, have fun. Chase each other around. You don’t have have to spend a lot of money, it can be a picnic at the park, it can be a walk. Stay away from the movies, because we want you to interact. You can go out to a nice dinner, you can spend money or you’re not. And some couples say you know like, “Oh, you don’t understand we have a toddler at home. Babysitters are so expensive, we can afford it.” Fine. Designate time as your date, set up a time, this is our date, the little one goes to bed, you know what, we are turning everything off, we’re having a special box of macaroni and cheese for dinner tonight. We’re going to play games, we’re going to do stuff. But we are designating this time as our date, where we’re going to do it in a special room and make it something different than what we normally do. And so you can do that even at home, you can be playful with each other however you want. And then lastly, we’re what we want you to do is check in with each other with the State of the Union once a week, we want you to check in with each other. And what are you doing right in your relationship? And what do you need to work on? What do you need to improve? Not what you did wrong, just what do you need to improve? And when you add all that up, you’ve spent six hours on your relationship that week, and you’ve done things that are going to really draw you together.
[1:35:27] Ashley James: Thank you. That was very well said. Could you clarify like how to do the State of the Union, the weekly meeting, how to do it and how not to do it? I can really see I mean, in my own head, I can see myself doing the blame game, “I didn’t like it when you did this, and you didn’t pick up your underwear or whatever. But I know that’s not how to do it. It’s not about blaming the other person. But you’re saying it’s about celebrating what worked that week, and also then acknowledging what’s not working, so you can work on it.
[1:35:57] Michelle Elsdon: Correct. So we suggest maybe designate a time each week that you’re going to do it. So you’re both kind of aware of the time. And you know, maybe it’s Sunday morning in bed, you have your cup of coffee, and sit down and kind of start off with like what you think worked. And from your perspective of what worked for you, what you really appreciated about your partner and things that you noticed. And I think that goes a long way by just saying, “Wow. You know, I really appreciated those little notes that you put in my lunch.” Or that, “You sent me extra text this week.” A lot of people don’t communicate all day long. So those extra things are really special. And then as far as what we have to work on, it’s really nice to talk about, from what you saw that you did. So instead of talking about what your partner did or didn’t do, it’s really better to say, “I really messed up this week about this and I’m going to really try harder to do XYZ.” So instead of saying you did this, it’s kind of like what Shane said earlier about not saying ‘you’ or ‘your’ in this particular situation. It’s really better to focus on what you saw, that you could improve on versus what you think your partner should improve on. And I think that’s a little bit better way to go about it. Because then your partner will also probably talk about the things that maybe you are going to bring up but it will be less critical that way.
[1:37:33] Ashley James: So I see what you’re saying. And what if someone has a boundary that their partners crossing? How do they address it without the blame game? So I’m going to use the example of one partners leaving clothes all over the floor, because that’s an easy one. But the other partner really, it’s just their pet peeve, they really don’t like it, they want him to put in the hamper or do the laundry. Is that when they would bring that up in the State of the Union? Or should they bring it up just at the moment that they see it? Like I’m just, “I’d like to change this thing that you’re doing.” Or how can we change it? So how would they address that?
[1:38:13] Shane Elsdon: Well, the focus of what your question is, is you’re saying I need you to change what you’re doing. And what we like to try to do is focus on fulfilling what your needs are. So to identify what your needs are, and then coming up with a plan. So the idea of, we’ll use the laundry on the floor – I would come to Michelle and I would express to her that I have a need. And this is what my need is. And when we get into these kind of conversations, this doesn’t have to be during the State of the Union, this can be throughout the week, if this is something that’s becoming an issue or a problem where as you pointed out, you said you’re starting to feel discouraged. And as we bring it up and we like to use a three step plan in how we bring this up to our partners. So it’s, ‘I feel about what and I need.’ And the ‘about what’ is the problem. And we want to make sure that we keep it up. So the ‘about what’ in this case is the laundry on the floor. That’s the problem. Now what we have a tendency of doing is wanting to make it personal. So what I mean by this is, “Okay, so the problem is the laundry on the floor, you always put your laundry on it.” Now I’ve made it personal. It’s no longer about the laundry, it’s about you. Or, “I’m always the one that has to clean up the laundry.”
[1:39:40] Ashley James: And then there’s that resentment, and possibly seven years of built up resentment.
[1:39:46] Shane Elsdon: And so I made it personal about me, I always have to clean up the laundry. Okay. So the idea is – the problem is the laundry. That’s the problem. So if we can keep the personal part out of it and focus on the problem, how do we come up? So I have a need. So I’m feeling overwhelmed. I’m feeling overworked. I’m feeling discouraged. I’m feeling unheard about the laundry and the socks on the floor and you know, the clothes laying out. And I need for us to come up with a plan, I need for us to come up with a schedule of doing the laundry, or I need for us to get us to get a bigger hamper, so that it’ll hold all of our laundry or whatever the needs are to fulfill that. I’m sorry. Whatever the tools are to fulfill that need. And then we express that with our partner. So you notice in that example that I just gave at the end there, I never made it personal. I didn’t make this about you or about me. The idea is about the problem. How do we focus on getting rid of the problem and dealing with that? And those are your needs. What is your needs? And if you if the two of you are going to sit down together and hear each other’s needs and understand each other’s needs, then we can come up with; one, how to fulfill each other’s needs or two, how to come to compromise about those needs. And how we can come to what would be a working situation for us. And that’s ideally what we’re going to come up with.
[1:41:22] Ashley James: So it’s I feel about what I need. It sounds like it reminds me of nonviolent communication. Is that where you got it from?
[1:41:34] Shane Elsdon: This is a Gottman tool. It’s another tool that Gottman’s have if using conflict management.
[1:41:42] Ashley James: Got it. Conflict Management, of course. I think that’s a tool we all need in our relationship. That’s great. What’s your favorite out of all the seven? Do you guys call them steps or tools? Principles. Thank you. Out of the seven principles, which one is your favorite?
[1:42:03] Michelle Elsdon: I guess my favorite one is really probably the love maps and the friendship part of it. Because I think that’s the part that is so easily forgotten. Especially in not really the newer relationships, or maybe the premarital couples, you know, they may not quite get it yet – what we’re talking about, but for everyone else, I feel like that, that really resonates the most with everyone because it kind of gets lost in the shuffle of life. And marriage becomes a business instead of a relationship. And so getting back to the friendship and the relationship part of it is that’s really the foundation of the whole principles that we talked about. And so to me, that’s why it’s my favorite, because it’s really the one that I think is overlooked the most.
[1:42:57] Ashley James: And what about you? What’s your favorite principle?
[1:43:01] Shane Elsdon: You know, I like the fondness and admiration and I like the positive perspective. And I think primarily because I’m a positive person. And I like to focus on fondness and admiration, on the things that I like about my partner, on the things that I like about us doing, the fun. Keeping that positive perspective. When I catch myself in a bad place, I find that I am slipping into that negative perspective. And so I have to remind myself to be positive. And I have to remind myself of why I love my kids, or why I love Michelle, or why I like this relationship. Or why I like myself? Why is it that I do what I do? So I will remind myself of that positive part. And so in the seven principles, I think fondness and admiration and positive perspective is probably my favorite.
[1:44:11] Ashley James: I love it. I’m so interested in learning more and diving in. This has been such a great introduction into this. Can you paint the picture of sort of a couple that’s in trouble? The couple that’s in disaster, so those who are listening can go, “Uh-oh, I see a few of those symptoms in my marriage, it’s time to time to turn it around.” Can you paint that picture of the common things that they saw in the disaster couples?
[1:44:37] Shane Elsdon: Well, you know, first off in communication, it’s couples who they call it the four horsemen. It’s using criticism, using defensiveness, using contempt using stonewalling. When you’re using those conversation patterns, those are going to be detrimental to communication. The first initial just watching how couples start conversations, using harsh startups instead of softened startups. That’s something we see immediately what happens when couples come together. If we see that when they start talking and they start using harsh startups, that’s going to be something where the conversation’s gonna go bad. You can just see it’s going to go bad in those ways. Like I said, the criticism, contempt stonewalling, defensiveness, those are all big predictors in bad relationship problems. Failed repair attempts are a big one where you talked about your husband and it has a humor, but when he starts to use that, and they’re not being accepted, those repair attempts aren’t being accepted. That’s another sign that we’re going down that path where there’s those six signs of divorce, and that’s the next step in there. It’s the rewriting of history, it’s where we start seeing that negative perspective, start talking about things that are negative, start remembering the history of things that were bad, you know, just our whole thought processes is in that negative prospect. And then the last and final stage is just when we start living parallel lives. You know, it’s like we aren’t interacting, but we’re just kind of living together. And we’re running that parallel lives together.
And, you know, those are the signs where when you see the couples or the listeners right now, when they’re looking, and they say, “Yeah, we use these, you know, these are the things that we’re doing and stuff.” It doesn’t mean that it’s over. But it means that you need to get help, it means that you need to come in and change some things. You need to learn your conversation patterns, you need to start interacting and communicating. I would want to get into looking at how all of that is and then how connected are you? How is the erotic you and you as a relationship? Are you and your spouse, are you guys being intimate with each other? And whatever level that intimacy is with each other. Are you being intimate with each other? Intimacy is an enormous one. To me it is, like I said, it’s not the fix all, but it is huge in a relationship. And when the intimacy isn’t there, it needs to be brought up. And even sometimes people say, “Well, what if I just don’t feel like it?” Well, you know what, put on your Nike’s and just do it.
[1:47:47] Ashley James: But intimacy, like you said, that doesn’t mean penetrating sex, it can be touch, it can be you know, it can be soft words, it can be hugging, it can be cuddling, it can be holding hands. It’s putting the wall down, putting the defenses down, opening up, being vulnerable, being connected, and wanting to be energetically connected to the person.
[1:48:17] Shane Elsdon: Yeah. It is that connection at whatever level each couple. And we have couples that come in that have been married for 20 years, and they report to us, and when we’ll talk to them, and we’ll ask them how their sex life is, we’ll ask them the quantity and the quality and all of that. And we’ll hear things like, “Oh, no. We haven’t been intimate in 12 years, 14 years.” And you know, they’re not having sex, they’re not being intimate with each other. And they’re not even living as good roommates anymore. They’re now just kind of living as bad roommates. And that intimacy is something that keeps that roommate part of us away, keeps us together. It’s amazing to me, when you look at, like the normal bar study, where they look at couples who are reporting being satisfied and having great marriages and great sex lives, and that the things that they’re doing. They’re telling each other that they love each other, they’re being intimate with each other, they’re buying each other little erotic gifts for each other, they’re taking each other on erotic vacations with each other, they’re spending time turning towards each other instead of away from each other. They’re spending quality time constantly trying to connect together, that’s what’s going on with the couples that are having those relationships. And when we see couples that come in, that are having great sex lives, we see coming are intimately together and having great sex lives.
It’s funny when those couples come in, it seems more often than not that they are having situational issues that they need to get past. That’s what they need help with, it’s situational issues. We have this particular thing that’s going on, and we just need help getting past it. That’s what they’re coming in for is a situational. The couples that have no relationship, they’re not having intimacy, they’re not being sexual with each other, they’re not being close. When those couples come in, and are looking at, it could be there’s some situational things, but then we find there’s all these foundational parts of it that aren’t there in the relationship. And they’re basically just living as roommates. When they come in, and they have the conversation, we hear them talking to each other in ways that are just non-relationship ways. They’re just two strangers or two friends talking.
[1:50:57] Ashley James: I can see why your website is artoflovingcenter.com. I can see why now. I get it. It really is about fostering that love, that connection, and you’re taking away the blame. I think a person in a relationship that wants to fix it is worried that a part of counseling is going to be a blame game, or they’re going to feel very vulnerable, they’re going to feel like their ego gets bruised. And that they’ll get defensive. A lot of people feel defensive when you know, “Hey, let’s do some counseling. Let’s go to marriage counseling.” Then the other one gets all defensive. Like there’s nothing wrong with me, you need to get fixed. There’s nothing wrong with me. But you guys are gentle and loving. And it’s just tools you want to give the couple, it’s not about blame. It’s not about bruising the other person’s ego. It’s not about dragging them through the mud of the history of the relationship and everything they did wrong. It’s about what they can start doing right – right now. And it’s very practical. I like how practical it is. It’s so cool. It’s been wonderful sitting with you guys today. Is there anything left unsaid? Anything that you want to share with the listeners to wrap up today’s interview?
[1:52:19] Michelle Elsdon: No. I don’t think so. I think we’ve covered most of the things that we do in our work together. And I would just say, if you’re concerned about your relationship, and you’re afraid to go to counseling, then maybe try a workshop. It’s less threatening, and it’s kind of just a class. And a lot of times we hear that there’s one partner that really wants to get some help, and the other person really does it. And so I think that the workshops can be less threatening for that person that’s really not wanting to do it. And they come away with a lot of tools, and then maybe that helps propel them into the counseling that they need. Or maybe it just helps them on their own to kind of have a springboard to go forward.
[1:53:09] Ashley James: I love that your workshop is the Seven Principles For Making Marriage Work, and that it is psycho education. It’s not a replacement for therapy. It’s not counseling, but it is teaching the couple all the tools that they can apply every day, you’re giving them the homework.
[1:53:25] Shane Elsdon: Correct. Correct. And you know, one thing that I think it’s important, if in a couple, one partner says, “I think we need counseling.” And the other partner says, “No, I don’t think so.” – You need counseling. If a person is coming to you, and they’re expressing that they feel that they need counseling, they’re expressing to you that even though you may not be identifying a problem, that they’re feeling that there’s a section that there’s a problem. We get couples that come in all the time where they say, “Well, I brought this up before. I brought this up before. And now I’m at the point where I’m ready to quit.” So if your partner expresses to you that they need, they want help, take it serious. You may not see the issue, but they’ll see the issue. And you need to go in and talk to find out what these issues that they’re feeling are.
[1:54:22] Ashley James: Beautiful and that it’s not threatening, especially if they’re going to work with you guys. Because it’s all about fostering love and and for the men listening it could be great sex, right? Great love and intimacy. www.artoflovingcenter.com. I definitely urge listeners to check out your workshops. The next one coming up is August 3rd and 4th. So it’s just around the corner, but you do them every few months. So they can contact you on the website and see.
[1:54:51] Shane Elsdon: They can sign up directly on the website. They can call us to set it up or there is a signup page right on the website. There’s a few seats left in the August one and then yeah, we do them periodically.
[1:55:04] Ashley James: Wonderful. Thank you so much. You guys are welcome back on the show. Anytime you want to come teach.
[1:55:10] Michelle Elsdon: Thank you, Ashley. It’s been really wonderful meeting you and we love your show. So thank you.
[1:55:16] Shane Elsdon: And thank you very much for having us on and we do love your show. Thank you.
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Get Connected With Shane And Michelle Elsdon!
Recommended Reading by Shane And Michelle Elsdon
The Seven Principles of Making Marriage Work by John Gottman
Troy Reicherter And Ashley James
- Toxicants that bioaccumulate
- The body is not able to recognize the chemicals in our environment
- Activated charcoal and detoxification
- Gene expression
- Troy Reicherter’s experiments
- Re-feeding after the fast
Ever afraid to try fasting? In this episode you will learn about the benefits of fasting in detoxifying the body. Know what toxicants are and the damage they can do internally. Troy Reicherter will also share with us his fasting journey and reintroducing food after a long term fast.
Hello true health seeker and welcome to another exciting episode of the Learn True Health podcast. Today we have a really interesting guest coming back on the show. In the last two years, he spent over $20,000 in lab tests to determine whether he was detoxing chemicals, like he calls them toxicants; artificial pesticides, you know, chemicals, environmental pollutants, basically, which are very hard to get out of the body – PCBs. These fat soluble toxins that accumulate in the body and that are now known to cause cancer once it reaches a certain threshold in the body. So in the last two years, he has done numerous things and experimented on himself. He’s done supplements, he did 109 sauna sessions, and several long water only fasts. Then he took his blood tests every six months to determine what works, what doesn’t work. And today, he’s here to share his results, his ongoing results, as he’s been on the show before, and he will come back every few years because he’s going to continue doing these experiments, and he has people who want to participate with him. So it’ll just keep growing into case studies. It’s amazing that no one around the world is doing this research. Because if you think about it, research dollars come from wanting to invent a medicine, right?
Universities so far has been willing to experiment on how to detoxify the body naturally of these horrible chemicals that get accumulated in our body and cause disease and wreak havoc on our health. And so he’s basically the first person that he knows of, that is doing these types of experiments. So it’s really cool to learn from him today. One thing he mentions, because again, he did 109 sauna sessions, and tested his blood levels to see if it was working among all the other things he was doing. I want to let you know that my favorite sauna, and I’ve been using it with great results for the last year and a half. It has been the Sunlighten Sauna. I absolutely love it, I really noticed the difference.. And if you’ve been a longtime listener, you’ll know my story. I was having this toxic overload happen every time I went to lose weight. So as we you know, we store these toxins, these toxicants in our adipose tissue, and my liver was not able to handle it to manage it. And so anytime I went to lose weight, I would get very sick, my liver would become inflamed, I went and got liver tests and ultrasounds and blood tests and determined that it was a very, very angry liver, and my body would just become so sick that I would be almost bedridden from this toxic overload. So I got a sauna after being recommended by several Naturopaths that the best way to remove toxins from the body is to bypass the liver and the kidneys is through our skin. Our skin can sweat out even these fat soluble toxins. And so I’ve been using the Sunlighten Sauna successfully. I’ve been having amazing results. The first thing I noticed my skin became very soft. Because it has the anti aging properties.
The Sunlighten Sauna, which is the three in one sauna has near mid and far infrared and these rays will stimulate collagen production. So it’s great for beautiful skin. But I noticed that I slept better, I had more mental clarity, I had more energy, I was so much more relaxed, and my body started to shed weight without having the toxic overload that I had before. So I’m very excited to tell you that I believe in the Sunlighten Sauna, it’s ultra low EMF, it is non toxic. It’s very easy to assemble. My husband did it single handedly. And so you can get the wooden one or you can get the one that is a solo system, which you’re able to put in your closet when you’re not using it. I recommend that you call Sunlighten and talk to them, see which unit is best for you. And make sure you get the Learn True Health listener discount, you get free shipping, that’s about $500 off because these units are quite heavy. So you get free shipping. And right now they’re giving us an additional… It’s hard to explain but it is very relaxing. It’s it’s a machine that they put in the sauna and it uses light and sound to turn on the healing response in the nervous system. And they’re finding it works really well with people with anxiety, high stress, and even post traumatic stress. So that is something that is wonderful that they’re gifting us as well. So give Sunlighten a call. Mention the Learn True Health podcast with Ashley James for those wonderful discounts. And if you have a Sunlighten Sauna and you’re having great results we want to share with me please feel free to email me [email protected], I’d love to hear your experiences. I’ve had dozens of listeners contact me and tell me that they’re having such wonderful results with it. And also because you can even sweat on lower temperatures. It’s great for kids, my back when he was three and now he’s four, he sits with me in the sauna till he’s ready to get out. I don’t keep him in there for a whole half an hour, but he will sweat in the sauna, which is so great to help the children to detox as well. Excellent. Will enjoy today’s show. As I know you will have yourself a fantastic day.
[6:10] Ashley James: Welcome to the Learn True Health podcast. I’m your host, Ashley James. This is Episode 369. Well, here we are in my backyard garden, sitting here with Troy Reicherter and we’ve had you on the show before you came over to my house for Episode 138. So listeners can go and check that out. And since then many things have happened. And I’m excited to uncover them here today. Welcome back to the show.
[6:45] Troy Reicherter: Yeah. Thanks, Ashley. Thanks for having me. It was two years ago, wonderful to be back.
[6:49] Ashley James: It’s amazing how time flies. It’s pretty crazy. But that was just two years ago. So, what interests me the most when I met you at the Unity Church, you were doing an experiment, you like doing experiments. Do you consider yourself a scientist?
[7:08] Troy Reicherter: Well, I have a master’s degree in traditional Chinese medicine. Technically, that’s a Master of Science degree. But no, I’m not really a career scientist or anything. I’m kind of a citizen scientist, if you want to put it anyway.
[7:23] Ashley James: I like that citizen scientist. So you were experimenting on a few things, you were looking to form enough people to come together in the Seattle area to pray and meditate on peace over the summer, two years ago to see if we could impact the amount of crime or the crime rate in the area. And you’ve also been experimenting for the last few years on fasting, water only fasting and testing your different levels of pollution, chemicals and pesticides that are really hard to get rid off, to see if you could use fasting and a clean diet and some supplements even talk about today to help to eliminate the body of heavy metals and pollution. And so now it’s been two years later, you have some remarkable information to share with us.
[8:20] Troy Reicherter: Yeah. Well, this experiment started back in 2015. When I had read a lot of articles about the things in the body, including heavy metals. I had to pick and choose what I could test for, I would have loved to have tested for heavy metals for flame retardants. But I finally had to narrow it down to two main things. So what I was testing for was pesticides. I think they measured 13 different kinds and then PCBs, of which there are I believe 207 different varieties. So it’s not exactly water only fasting, it’s a modified fasting, and I can describe the things that I did. And I started out just believing that there must be a way because mainstream medical science right now is telling people that there’s no known way, or no safe way to get these chemicals that do bio accumulate out of your blood. Now some chemicals don’t bio accumulate. And so like the phthalates, plastic softeners for example, within a few days they leave your system or the stuff that you get from those plastic water bottles or from receipts, you know.
[9:45] Ashley James: Bisphenol A?
[9:46] Troy Reicherter: Bisphenol A, yes. That leaves your body within a few days, depending on how it’s taken in, maybe a week. So some things do leave the body like arsenic, but then other things do bio accumulate like heavy metals, and DDT, PCBs. So those are the things I’m testing for, and decided to do this fast to see if I could get it out of the body. So that was my whole thesis is that there must be a way to do this. And actually, I am the first person to prove that this can be done. So this is pretty remarkable. Everybody said I was crazy to do it. Everybody said this, how is this going to work? These these things are so lipophilic. And that means that they bind with the fats in your body, and they’re just not going to be released. Because of my experience with fasting that goes back to 1993. I was just very convinced that when you’re fasting, so much of the fat is lost, and it’s throwing toxicants out into the body. And by the way, the word toxin is used by most people to describe these things. But that’s not actually correct. A toxin is actually a toxic substance, that’s made by a living organism. So like a spider’s venom, that’s a toxin. So I’m going to try to use the right word toxicant, which is either either an element like a heavy metal that’s toxic, or else a man made chemical. So these toxicants get thrown out into the blood and I was thinking they must be leaving the body at pretty large rate during a fast. So I was just sure that if we did this and measured, because these tests are very expensive. I’ve spent over $20,000 so far on the eight tests that I’ve done on my blood, and I could use some help pay for the rest. With the donations I have. I’ve set up a website and a nonprofit called Holistic Health Research. But these tests haven’t been done before, and the assumption was fasting wouldn’t work. So that’s what I was trying to prove. So in 2015, I began the whole thing with three-week fast. And you met me in 2017, I guess it was after my second fast. Yeah. So to go back to I guess, to just kind of recap what I knew then, when I saw you last time I had the results of the first four blood tests in. And they’re interesting, but they’re a little bit confusing. I discovered later a little bit misleading. Because what happens is more complicated than I realized. So my initial blood measurements for the PCBs was 71,000 parts per trillion.
They give some of these numbers in parts per billion, and I’m adjusting by adding, you know, adding three zeros. So 71,000 parts per trillion, was actually much lower than what most people seem to get. The other results that I’ve seen, for people’s blood is usually much higher than that. There was a test in a family in Oakland back in 2005. And the littlest boy in the family, he had 355,000 parts per trillion, a little girl, I think she was like eight; 207,000 parts per trillion. And then dad had like 200,000 parts per trillion, mom was the lowest she was actually a little lower than me, 67,000 parts per trillion. Can you guess why the mother might have had the lowest rating?
[13:24] Ashley James: I’m gonna guess because she breastfed. And so she gave the toxins to her kids.
[13:28] Troy Reicherter: Exactly. Yeah, that’s the theory anyway. We don’t know what she had before that. But that’s the only known way right now that scientists or doctors will tell you to get rid of these things from your body is to have kids and to breastfeed. Which, of course, is horrible, right? I mean, who would want to do that? You’d rather keep it all yourself, or even intensify your own levels than to give it to your poor child. And what’s doubly worse is the kids are more vulnerable to these chemicals as they’re developing. So it may be that they’re 10 times more vulnerable, we don’t really have a way to gauge that yet, you’d have to do all kinds of experiments. That would be totally unethical. But the funny thing is, we’re doing these experiments on ourselves right now. And there is no known way besides that to get rid of this stuff. So, so these were my beginning levels, which were pretty low compared to other people, 71,000 parts per trillion for the PCBs. And then for DDT, it breaks down into a bunch of smaller groups of chemicals. And the largest group by far is called 44DDE. So it’s basically DDT with a slight change in its molecular structure. And my numbers there were not quite as high, it was 56,000 to start out with. Again, which is about like one quarter, or one fifth of what the average person seems to have. And I can only guess that’s because I’ve tried to eat vegetarian for a long time. Tried to eat organic for a long time. And I’ve done a lot of fasting in the past. So that’s my best guess as to why my numbers are lower than other people’s. Because these these toxicants – they definitely are higher in meat, especially seafood, and dairy products, for sure.
[15:13] Ashley James: Right. And the understanding is that when animals consume, so let’s think of a cow, a lot of people eat beef. We now raise corn to feed the cows. It actually really disagrees with with the cow’s stomach. Some people have even said cows are allergic to corn. And so then they have to be put on a lot of antibiotics because they constantly get infections. So they’re eating all this corn that we’ve raised. This is not organic, just talking about standard, you know, fast food, hamburger kind of meat. We raised this cow on the corn that is latent with pesticides and heavy metals. It’s all concentrated in their fat and their meat – significantly concentrated through a few years of eating pesticide latent corn. And then we slaughter that animal and turn it into a hamburger and you go through the drive-thru. And you’re eating that patty and the fat in that patty is concentrated pesticides. And so no wonder when we eat meat that we’re eating concentrated toxicants. We’re eating concentrated toxicants. We’re eating the flesh of animals, because we’ve been feeding them toxicant latent food for years.
[16:41] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, that’s right. I mean when you when you delve into the subject, you’ll really feel that we should take just a fraction of the money that we spend on the military or sports and do some real research into these things to find out how bad is it? What are the levels and all the foods that we eat and the animals and ourselves? What are the effects of these things on us? What can we do to avoid it? If every time you went to the store, there were numbers of PCBs and heavy metals printed on the food you bought. You think twice before you got that seafood. Because like the one of the articles that inspired me was the 2006 October National Geographic article about the levels of toxicity inside of a Bay Area reporter. And he just went out and had, was it swordfish, I think that he caught off the Golden Gate and his levels of some heavy metals doubled just from one meal. You know, so this is very dangerous stuff. But we don’t think about it. It’s not talked about much.
[17:49] Ashley James: You’re sharing with the numbers with us. I know they’re on your website too. What’s your website again?
[17:55] Troy Reicherter: Well, there’s my author page is www.troyreicherter.net, and also there’s Holistic Health Research, it’s www.hhresearch.org.
[18:16] Ashley James: I’m going to make sure the links to everything you do are in the show notes of today’s podcast. But before we continue, I want to ask, in the last two years, I know you’re going to share with us your results of lowering these levels. Do you do feel a difference? Do you feel healthier? Can you noticeably say that since lowering your levels of these chemicals that there’s been a shift in your health or your life?
[18:46] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, you notice it most the first couple months after the fast, you just feel like Superman basically. I just turned 51. And I remember last year when I turned 50 and I did that fast. It was grueling. I did a 40-day fast last summer, but I could have gone for another 10 days. And then when it was over and I got back into the routine of eating again, slowly. Like I say, I mean your human growth hormone levels they’re just through the roof. For a man, they may be 22,000% higher than normal. So I really felt like I was 20 years old. Really.
[19:24] Ashley James: You look early 40s. You don’t look like you’re in your 50s. I’m sorry. You said that the human growth hormone in men after doing a fast is how much higher?
[19:36] Troy Reicherter: I’ve read that it can be up to 2000 times higher. For women I think the number was about 1300 percent higher, depends on the person I suppose. But that’s linked directly to testosterone and tissue repair, energy, vitality, all those things that make you youthful and feel good.
[19:58] Ashley James: In Episode 230. Interviewed Dr. Alan Goldhamer. The whole episodes about fasting. But he talks about on on day five of a water only fast, you have a huge spike in human growth hormone. And that is linked to preserving your muscle tissue. Because people are always afraid they’re going waste away, their muscles going to waste away. But the spike in human growth hormone preserves our muscles. So you can do extended fast and not have that loss of muscle mass.
[20:36] Troy Reicherter: Interesting. Yeah, I need to learn more about that as well. And I need to talk to him. So what I discovered, I’ll just quickly tell you what I learned up to the point where I was basically blind for two years where I didn’t have any results coming in because this laboratory that I send my blood samples to, like I say they they do them in large batches and it costs a fortune. So I had to wait a while. I did my first blood drawing in May of 2015, and had those numbers that I just gave you the 56,100 parts per trillion for the DDE and 71,000 for PCBs. Now when I got my results back, first I did two tests. And the second blood drawing was January of 2016. So seven months later, I had only a 12% drop for the DDE and I had actually a little increase in the PCBs. 71,000 is it? I can barely read it there, 900 I believe. By the way, all my results, I use a snipping tool and I took all of them and I put them on my website. So you can see what I see. You don’t have to go through something that I’ve typed up and perhaps you know, made some kind of typographical error on. I mean they are the original results, they send me Excel sheets, then I requested a printed version, and they got kind of irate about it because they don’t usually do that. And then they basically just printed me the same thing that they sent me. So there is no difference. There’s no difference between the report that I got on paper and the report that I got electronically. So what you’re seeing is really all there is. And so I was disappointed way back in 2016, that it hadn’t been a bigger drop. But I’ve learned a lot more in the meantime, which I’ll explain. So all I saw then was it a moderate drop of 12.48% for the for the DDE, an increase.
[22:35] Ashley James: Let me just clarify 12% drop from doing two fasts?
[22:40] Troy Reicherter: This was from just the the 21-day fast.
[22:42] Ashley James: So you do one 21 -day fast and you drop which chemical at 12%?
[22:47] Troy Reicherter: DDE dropped 12% after seven months. These these are blood lipid measurements, by the way. We measure the lipids in the blood, because if you measure the total blood volume, that is very dependent on how much water is in your system, so it throws the whole thing off. So blood lipids are pretty constant. There is a whole other aspect of this, which is the fact that your fatty tissues – we’re not testing. That would require something else, you’d have to do liposuction or something and decide where you’re going to do it, which part of the body. And then you know, it brings up a whole lot of questions as to how that would be accurate. I’d have to check with the company if they could do this. But if you wanted to know a person’s total body toxic load, you’d have to consider the blood lipids as well as adipose tissue. So that’s a really good question as to what’s still in there. However, this was what I did get, I got the 12% drop after seven months and a slight increase in PCBs, because I assumed you know, the fat cells are throwing out their toxicants into the bloodstream, and it was still elevated. Now remember, my experience at that time wasn’t just fasting. I was doing saunas. I did over 100 saunas, I believe 109 saunas, it’s all in my book in great detail. And there’s a case study online. But I was taking supplements, like 30 different supplements, they’re all in my case, study online, Sam E and everything I could think of to try to make more of the enzymes that would get those chemicals out of my body. So I was doing all kinds of stuff. And it’s all documented there. I was meditating on it, I was walking in a circle, because in Chinese medicine, they say that there’s a way to get rid of, expel bad things from your body by doing that I and I recorded all of that stuff. So, that was an unknown how much that did along with fasting itself. I was drinking pretty much pure water during the fast and taking those supplements, along with the vitamin.
It’s all documented carefully. So I had hoped way back then that I was going to have this great drop and I’d be done with experiment. And then I suspected, I thought oh, I’ll get, I didn’t know what I get. But I was hoping for this huge drop. And then I could get some funding and do more experiments with simpler model so that we could really prove this intervention had this effect. So I realized I was going to have to go for at least another year. So I did not do a fast in the summer of 2016. I just kind of wanted to see whether or not the level would continue to drop on its own. I was thinking perhaps there would still be a spike in the toxicant levels in the blood. So I did a blood drawing and July 6 of 2016. And I didn’t get the results back till the next year. But that one was almost exactly the same level. So it was 49,100 parts per trillion for the DDE for January. And it was only 48,600 parts per trillion for that same chemical in July of that year of 2016. So almost no change at all. And then for the PCBs, there was a bigger shift. The PCBs had peaked after the fast at 71,900. And then they dropped down to 64,400. So from the baseline measurement, it was a 9.3% drop. But of course I didn’t have those results till the following year. Now in the summer of 2017 right before I met you last time I had done a 30 day fast. So yeah, let me see.So 30 day fast. But I had only had the results from prior to that fast. So in January of 2017, the toxicant levels for the DD dropped a bit. So they had leveled out and then they dropped a bit. But see, I had done one additional intervention. It was the one I wouldn’t tell you about last time because I wanted to see the results first. Do you remember what it was?
[27:21] Ashley James: Are you talking about the supplement?
[27:23] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, it was activated charcoal. So what happened was, I was troubling over my results, because I was disappointed that I didn’t have a greater drop. So in 2016, I went to the University of Washington, and I emailed all the professors of toxicology, and one person got back to me, a dean named Professor Eaton. So he met with me and he was saying, “Well, the reason why fasting doesn’t seem to work for this is because of the enterohepatic pathway.” And I only had basic physiology. So I didn’t really know what that was. So it turns out what’s happening is, inside your body, we talked already about how there’s some chemicals that can be removed from your body naturally. But then there’s others that bioaccumulate. Well, even the ones that bioaccumulate, like PCBs and DDE and PBDEs, all those things, your body is not blind to them. There are enzymes in your body that can detect these things. So what’s happening is, your body has enzymes, cytochrome P450 family, and specifically there’s one called P450 43A. It’s abbreviated to CYP3A4. And this enzyme, you can see if you type that number, and you can see a picture of it on the internet it looks this, it’s just a giant mess of proteins, just a big ball of proteins. It reminds me of the Borg spaceship in Star Trek the Next Generation. And so that thing, it’s the enzyme is like a biological machine, it goes around and it acts on the body, it speeds up or changes cellular processes in the body without being changed itself. And so it can recognize these chemicals that don’t belong. I don’t know how. But it can do that. When it finds one that doesn’t belong, it bonds it to hydrogen. And then it just kind of moves on and finds another one bonds into a hydrogen.
So as these hydrogenated molecules are passing through the liver next time, the liver has special cells, they can sense them. And they use that hydrogen as like an anchor point. And they can grab onto it and bond them in with water or whatever is in the bile. So they put them into the bile, and it goes out the bile duct into the duodenum and into the small intestine. So the body has this amazing tool that almost none of us know about or think about to catch these molecules and get rid of them. Problem is, we didn’t evolve with these chemicals present. We evolved millions of years ago in Africa mostly, right? So everything that we encountered back then we had a pretty good way to get rid of, you know, the toxins of animals and plants and whatnot, that weren’t in such great amount that they killed us right away, right? But we’ve never seen these chemicals before. So even though our body can recognize them, in terms of these enzymes, the small intestine has no way of knowing what they are, it doesn’t have any detection system. So once they get into the small intestine, where all your food is passing through. The gates are open, it just comes right back into the body.
[30:37] Ashley James: So to recap what you’ve just said. Because it’s there’s a lot there, I think we really want to make sure that that it’s understood. It’s a lot for me too. So going back to the Borgh shaped enzyme, there’s this enzyme, and where does it come from? How does the body created it? Do you know?
[31:02] Troy Reicherter: Good question. I should look that up again. It may be partly the liver and then other places in the body, other special tissues that make it. But the main thing is that it’s there. It’s like a superhero that’s constantly on the lookout for these bad guys, and it catches them and it throws them out the door. But the problem is the doors a revolving door.
[31:23] Ashley James: Yeah, so I want to talk about that. So our body, like you’re saying, 100 or 200 years ago, we did not have any of these chemicals in our environment. But this is very, very new. Having PCBs, and all these all these things that we’re facing now, I think there’s something like 30,000 new chemicals every year being created and put into our environment, and our body just doesn’t recognize them. But this enzyme, when it senses something that’s not supposed to be there, so a toxin or toxicant, it will attach a hydrogen to it so that the liver can identify – it’s like tagging something and because all the blood is passing through the liver, and the liver goes, “Hey, you over there with that hydrogen, come over here, I gotta put you in the bile. You’re not supposed to be here.” And so it just knows. So it tags to this little really cool Borg like thing in our body is tagging all that stuff that we don’t want in our body with the hydrogen and the liver goes, “Okay, come on over here. We’re putting you in the bile.” And then because bile is meant to help emulsify fat so that we can digest it, but it’s also filled with toxins to get out of our body, including hormones as well. This is one thing for women, is that all the estrogen once the body is done with it, puts it in the bile to be eliminated. And so it breaks it down and puts it into like a form and puts it into the bile. So now it’s getting, like you said, excrete it into the duodenum to the rest of the small intestines and going to go into the big colon. And hopefully we’re going to have a bowel movement. And the problem is that bile is also a very precious substance. So the body will reabsorb as much of it as it can in order to reuse it. And thus, all the toxins that it was eliminating, are going to be reabsorbed because the body cannot tell the difference between the toxicants because we didn’t evolve with them, like you said. And so we need a way to bind in the colon, or in the intestines to bind. And I know, people who eat a very high fiber diet versus no fiber, so the standard American diet are even more toxic, because the fiber helps to bind I’ve heard especially if someone has constipation, that then the toxins will get absorbed quicker and for women will reabsorb the estrogens that have become unhealthy. They’re unhealthy levels of estrogen, that will reabsorb them. So we have to make sure that we’re not reabsorbing these chemicals. So you’ve you’ve started experimenting with activated charcoal in an effort to bind to the toxicants. And you got this idea from this professor.
[34:11] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, he didn’t mention that part of it. But he told me about the enteropathic pathway, which is like the circular thing going from the enzymes to the liver to the small intestine and right back into your blood. So then I immediately thought, “Okay, this seems like the logical weak link in the chain that maybe I can fix.” So I started thinking of what I could do to interrupt the enterohepatic pathway. I’ll call it EPI enterohepatic pathway interrupter. So I did a little research. And there’s a number of things out there, there’s some clays you could take that some people are saying will get rid of toxicants. Well, no one was talking about the enterohepatic pathway, though. It was known for quite some time that taking activated charcoal, which is an interesting product, it can come from different kinds of woods, coconut shells is one way, bamboo, all hardwoods, but it’s made in a very high temperature oven. And sometimes they use high pressure, high temperature steam. And it produces these tiny little granules that have incredible amounts of surface area. And so it’s not absorbing them, it’s ‘adsorbing’, it’s adsorbing these little chemicals as it passes through. It’s been used in emergency rooms for people who have overdosed on drugs or alcohol, it will get a lot of things right out of your in your alimentary canal quickly. But again, no one that I saw on the internet was using activated charcoal for the purpose I was talking about. It’s kind of fashionable now to bake cakes or pies, or even put activated charcoal into drinks, you know, putting in all these food and drinks with the intent of getting rid of some of the toxicants that are in that food, it may do that too. But I think by far the largest amount you’re going to be finding is what’s coming out in the bile, my own suspicion, but tests will have to be done to really prove this. So after doing research, I started with the activated charcoal in 2016 in August.
So from that point on, that was my main other intervention. And I didn’t get my results back from my January 2017 blood drawing. And I got those results back by the time I saw you. So, there was a drop in the DDE, it was about it was a little over 7% from the previous. So if you recall, the DDE had dropped 12% and then it had leveled off for two periods. And then it dropped about 7% down, it’s minus 20.68% from baseline – 44,500 after starting at 56,100. So it looked like a very clear step, as if it had if it had plateaued, leveled out and then dropped again. And for PCBs, it was an added drop, it went from 64,400 parts per trillion down to 59,700 parts per trillion. So it went from 9.3% drop from baseline to a 15.92% drop from baseline. So I couldn’t really tell as much with the PCBs since they had dropped for two periods in a row. But with the DDE, it appeared that it was the added intervention of the activated charcoal that was doing the trick. But there’s more on that later when I get to my next results. So then I was blind as to the results for two years, because I had to wait until I had four batches of my blood collected to send in for testing.
So in the meantime, I did a 30-day fast in the summer of 2017, right before I met you. I started about the last week of school I think. I’m a teacher, so I try to time it around my summer break. And then I did a 40-day fast last year. That was really interesting. And you can see the YouTube videos from that. If you go to YouTube, it’s Holistic Health Research YouTube channel. I’ve got videos showing most of the days of the last fast. And right up till day 40 I was out and about doing things, shopping, able to function. And as I said, I really could have gone for another 10 days. I was getting pretty gaunt. It looks a little scary. But I felt like I could keep going. Yeah, you reach a point where you know what you’re doing. And it’s just mind over matter. As long as you’ve got fat to burn, you can keep going. There’s lots of prohibitions about fasting, I should say don’t go off half cocked, you always want to talk to your doctor first, you definitely want to be over 21 before you do any fast, read up on the subject, start small start with a two or three-day fast. I started with a two-day fast you can read about all this in my book. I think my book is a great place to start because I go through all of my experiences, as well as talking about the history of fasting, physiological research into fasting, scientific discoveries about the health benefits of fasting, I have references to all the other books that I’ve ever heard about fasting. So you can read those yourself to all the considerations you have to make before trying to fast, all my own experiences with problems that I had. It’s all in there. And at the moment it’s on Kindle for just $5.
[39:38] Ashley James: It’s nice.
[39:39] Troy Reicherter: Good introductory low price. So what I did for this period, since my thesis then was I was thinking that all those other interventions I’d done – the sauna, the supplements. I had no reason to believe that they worked at all. You know, so I thought I’ll simplify the experiment from this point on and just restrict it to the fast which I just took some electrolytes and vitamins. I didn’t do all those other supplements to try to increase the enzyme levels, MSM and all those other things that you can take. They’re all listed on my case study, I think I had 30. But I didn’t do that this time around for the 30 and 40-day fast. I tried to keep it very simple, didn’t even do any saunas for a year and a half. And so I did blood drawings in June of 2017, December 2017, June 2018, December 2018, the first Saturday of those months. And I was hoping or I was expecting I guess, my hypothesis was based on all that I knew that I was going to see a big drop after the fast each time and then a smaller drop over the period when I just took the activated charcoal based on what I saw before because there was no big spike after a fast. There was a tiny little spike with the PCBs, if you recall, just like 1.27% the first time after the three week fast. And there was a drop of 12% with the DDE. So I was not expecting any spike after the fast. I thought it’ll be a big drop after the fast, little drop, big drop, little drop. I was hoping that all together it might wind up with a 90% drop.
[41:21] Ashley James: And during the fast you’re consuming the activated charcoal.
[41:25] Troy Reicherter: That’s right. Yeah, during the fast itself, I was taking activated charcoal. Another important point which I mentioned in my book, you have to do colonics if you’re going to do a fast of I would say over a week. I wouldn’t go more than a week without doing colonics and they’re easy. I use a Colima board and just follow the instructions. I would do it every other day. I used to try getting away with every fourth day. If you’re taking activated charcoal, that’s a really bad idea. Because the stuff, it accumulates down there and your large intestine very good at drawing things out. So basically, just imagine trying to pass charcoal briquettes kind of what you’re doing. And so you don’t want to do that, just every other day, I think is a good idea for for that. So yeah, I did. Because I was reasoning that the enzymes would be at an elevated state. When you stop eating and you start fasting, what happens, one of the many things that happens is your body stops producing digestive enzymes. And so all those little proteins that go to make enzymes, they get rearranged into different legos down there, and your body starts pumping out way more of those CYP3A4 to go and search and destroy and tag things for elimination and your liver is working overtime. It’s getting lots of energy to do this, you know, to filter through the blood more and get that stuff out through the bile. So there’s no food at all, your body’s kind of shut down that whole aspect of itself. And it’s just repairing things, all the cells are throwing out the toxicants for removal. So I thought that would be the perfect time – that time and then immediately after the fast. I was almost tempted to take an extra dose of the activated charcoal, but I just kept it the same every day for simplicity’s sake, because someone could always say, “Well, it wasn’t the fast that did it, it was the fact that you took more of the activated charcoal maybe.”
So anyway, I didn’t know until this year in April, what effect any of this had. So what’s really funny is everything I expected was backwards. But it was actually better than I expected. So the big shock was the time period in early 2017 between January and June of 2017, I didn’t do any fasting. I took activated charcoal. But you see, I didn’t take that much of it because I was waiting for my results. I sent in the blood sample in January and I didn’t get the results back until March. So I took a break from everything, because I was really sick of taking all the supplements. And I didn’t know if they were working. And I just thought I’ll just wait and see what my results are. So I really didn’t take activated charcoal. I think I only took it March, April and May. So it’s only about three months of it. The exact dates are in the book, and in the case study. But I had no reason to believe there would be any drop at all, or just I thought maybe 3%, maybe 5%? No, it was a huge drop 59.71% drop over baseline. So it went from 44,500 down to 22,600. And so that was for the DDE. And then for the PCB, it’s the same thing, it went from 59,700 parts per trillion down to 30,500 parts per trillion, it was a 15.92% drop from baseline down to a 57.04% drop from baseline. So it was humongous. So the only way I can account for this after thinking about a lot is gene expression. So we know from test on by Valter Longo at USC and elsewhere that the gene expression accounts for almost everything in your body.
[45:24] Ashley James: You’re talking about epigenetics, the ability for genes to turn on and off, right?
[45:28] Troy Reicherter: Well, I don’t know epigenetic, I think that’s a slightly different definition, something beyond genetics. It’s something we don’t understand about genetics, that’s for sure. And as a history teacher, I like the analogy or just a story about how they’ve recently discovered that the base pattern of DNA that makes your hand, or my hand or a dog’s paw, or a fish’s fin is the same. It’s the same base pattern. And what’s really affecting this is the gene expression. There’s big huge parts of the genome that we don’t understand at all. We used to think it was like garbage DNA. Somehow something in there is sending a signal to these patterns to say switch on and off here, switch this on, switch this off. So it’s like, just imagine the same piece of music, winding up being all the music that we hear, but it’s the same on the sheet. And it all depends on how the conductor chooses to play it. That’s almost what’s really happening with our DNA.
[46:25] Ashley James: Right. We have all the same notes. And you could have Mozart or AC DC, and it’s just all the same notes.
[46:31] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, you could say it that way. Or like this, if I have the same recipe, and then just depending on which chef makes it, you know, it turns out to be all the different foods in the world. That’s kind of what’s happening. So we’re just at our infancy and understanding how gene expression works. But gene expression changes when you do most anything like if you stand in your head for a while your gene expression is going to change if you go hiking, get up and higher altitude flying an airplane, your gene expression changes. There were a couple of twins recently, there were one was in space and one was on the earth. And it was in the news that even a year after the one twin came back down, I’m not sure exactly how they can tell. But when they take your DNA out, they can analyze it, they can tell which genes are being expressed differently. And they said he is the same. And yet he’s not the same because it’s identical DNA, and yet it’s being expressed differently.
So the only way I can explain that big drop is it’s not the activated charcoal alone doing that. Because I was taking activated charcoal during that time period, not for a very long time only maybe three months, like I said. So for less than the previous period in which there was a smaller drop. So I think what happens is, when you do an extended fast like I did – the 21-day fast or a longer one, you’re making the cell gates open to dump the toxicants into the bloodstream. And they’re not really going back to their default setting of collecting it back for at least two years it looks like, somewhere in that last six months. And I’m not even sure if that was going to be the bottom. I mean, if I hadn’t done anything else, maybe it would have kept on falling. I don’t know. So this is a huge question. And I think I’m the first person to discover this. Because no one else has done these kind of blood tests along with fast, right? So this is amazing to think that the body has this ability to do this. So many questions here about what did the activated charcoal do? What did the saunas do? What did the fasting do? What did these things in conjunction do? Okay, so the next big surprise, almost as big as the first one was the second one, you can see all this on my website, www.troyreicherter.net or www.hhresearch.org, all the graphs are there. So for the December 17 test, this is about six months after I did the 30 day fast.
[48:45] Ashley James: And just to clarify. So the next results that you’re going to give us, what did you do in those six months?
[48:55] Troy Reicherter: Right. So I tried to keep it simple. I tried to eat mostly vegan, although sometimes I fall off the wagon. But definitely vegetarian. And I just did the fast. I didn’t do any saunas. I didn’t do any of those supplements and none of those other fancy interventions that I did the first time, I didn’t meditate on it, I didn’t walk in a circle, and all those all those many, many things that I tried. I did acupressure. You can see all the list of the things that I tried, everything but the kitchen sink approach. I didn’t do that. So it was just the fast and then regular eating without any trouble all the way through.
[49:38] Ashley James: So it was six months?
[49:41] Troy Reicherter: I tried to do it. Yeah, exactly every six months. So it was like the first Saturday of June and December for two years.
[49:47] Ashley James: So for six months, there was no fasting it was just eating as clean as you could and some activated charcoal. But what you’re what you’re looking for is how does the body respond over time even six months after a fast?
[50:00] Troy Reicherter: Yeah. I had started the fast right after the previous blood test. So the previous one was the first Saturday of June. And it was later that month that I did that fast for 30 days. So the fast ended in July sometime. And then I had all those months. So here’s the funny part, based on my first fast back in 2015, I had no reason to believe there was going to be an elevation in the toxicants because I didn’t see it before. Well, this time I did see it. So it jumped up. So it went from 22,600 for the DDE parts per trillion, it jumped up to 34,200 parts per trillion for DDE. And for the PCBs – almost exactly the same thing. It jumped from 30,500 up to 51,900. So now, there was a spike. So the question is, was there a spike because I did a longer fast? Or probably more likely there had been a spike the first time back in 2015. But I didn’t see it because I did all those saunas, all the supplements and who knows what else? So to tease out what exactly is doing what will require a lot more experimentation. I mean, I did, I think it was 109 saunas. So when you think about it at the time, I was wondering, is this doing anything? I was hoping it was, but I think it was now, because I was just taking it for granted all the time. “Oh, there was no spike after the past.” I think there was a huge spike. But I reduced that all the way down through those other methods. And maybe the supplements had, maybe they had a huge effect. I can’t say for sure. But we won’t know unless we keep doing more experiments. It’s going to take a lot of people to experiment, and a lot of different places under a lot of different conditions and reproduce those experience before we really understand what’s doing what. But the way I looked at it was it’s a crash course, I had to figure out how to make those numbers go down as fast as they could and try everything I could. I mean, in this country, there’s over 4000 people every day that are being told they have cancer. And there’s over 500,000 people a year that are dying of cancer. And I can only imagine what it’s like. And if it were me, I would do everything I could, I would try everything I could to get rid of it. Or if I had a reason to believe I was at high risk, I would do everything I could to lower that risk. So I wouldn’t just try one intervention and wait 10 years and see what happened. And we can’t afford to just try one intervention at a time. I mean, sure, if you work in a big university, go ahead and do it that way. But since no one at big universities and institutions was doing this research in the first place, this is why I took it upon myself to do this. And they’re telling us that there’s no way to get these chemicals out of our body. So it is messy, it is complicated. It leaves a lot of questions unanswered. But the big, amazing thing is that I got these numbers to drop massively. And I’ve learned enough now to see that if you did these interventions within the first year and a half to two years, did them all up front, then within two years you’re going to see that adjustment, and then you’ll find out how much you got rid of.
And I am doing another experiment right now with a friend. I wish I had 10 friends and I could afford to have 10 blood tests. But a friend of mine, he’s just he’s doing nothing different all year, except he’s taking activated charcoal. So six months out or a year out and God willing, we will do the follow up and see what his numbers look like. So of course, it’s only one person, and what we need our clinical trials to do, you know, for men, for women, for older for younger, all different kinds of people. And then we’ll get some real, real hard data that we can use because different people could react totally differently to these things depending on their their genetic makeup and whatnot in their environment. But I’m trying to find that out as well about the activated charcoal and what effect that has all by itself. But that was my second big shock. First of all, there was this huge drop when I didn’t really do much of anything except the activated charcoal when I wasn’t expecting. So as I said, everything was backwards, I thought there’d be a little drop, there was a huge drop, then I thought, oh, there won’t be a spike, there was a big spike, which leads me to believe there probably had been earlier. But the sauna’s probably were very effective, and maybe the supplements and maybe something else. I mean for all I know, maybe the acupressure acupuncture that I did, might have added another 10% on top of it. All these things need to be researched.
So I think that’s the takeaway, I hope I can change culture to get people to start doing these things, and start researching these things and pushing other people to research these things. Because right now all the people with the big funding, they’re just, I don’t know what they’re doing. But they’re doing maybe drug tests, they’re doing anti cancer tests of this type, of that type. But this is your body’s main way to detoxify itself, heal itself and keep you from getting sick. And it’s being almost completely neglected, except for a few people out there that did you hear about every now and then. So okay, not to digress. But as I said everything after that was kind of backwards from what I expected. There was a there was there was a spike after the fast, then then the numbers dropped down to their lowest level but it wasn’t much lower than the June 2017, because it was still on the way back down. And obviously, you’re gonna have to wait a year and a half to two years after your last big fast to see that gene expression come to an end. Or you’re going to get your lowest reading, so it’s kind of frustrating, but you don’t see it right away. And now if we were doing like I said, the test right on the fat tissue itself, you will probably see a bigger drop right now before it readjusts and then you’d know, but that’s a whole nother kettle of fish. I didn’t start with that. I can’t jump into that now, because we don’t have a baseline measurement. I haven’t even talked to the lab to see if that’s possible, but I suppose it probably is. So then the numbers dropped down for the DDE. It spiked in December 2017 at 34,200 then it dropped all the way down to its lowest measurement of 22,000. And then the PCBs dropped down from a spiked high of 51,900 dropped down to 29,200. So this is the lowest measurement right there, was the measurement from one year ago before I started my 40-day fast. So remember I have these numbers in hand.
[56:35] Ashley James: Okay, got it. Let’s back up because I got a little confused there. So I want to make sure the listeners understand. So let’s, let’s tell it like a story. Because they can go look at the numbers, let’s tell it like a story. So the biggest drop that you had was after, I’m looking at the graph here that’s on your website. He’s showing me his laptop. We’re out in the garden sitting under a beautiful 10 by 10 tent that I once used with my husband to sell our handcrafted bat hoses at a farmers market 10 years ago. And it’s since been our our shelter, it’s our outdoor living room. So we’re in the outdoor living room, I buy the garden, and he’s showing me his laptop and I see this graph. And the graph is also on your website, which we’ll have the links to it in the show notes at www.learntruehealth.com. And here we have, I’m seeing the graph and it comes down and then the biggest drop is after – what did you do here to have the biggest drop?
[57:37] Troy Reicherter: Nothing. That was a surprise. I didn’t even take as much activated charcoal as I did the previous time, maybe only three months. And it was when I expected to have the least drop. I had the biggest drop. I think again, it was the gene expression coming to an end. That’s the only explanation I can think prior to this.
[57:52] Ashley James: But all the things you did prior, how many fasts were leading up to this?
[57:58] Troy Reicherter: Well, from beginning in 2015 till prior to the 30-day fast in 2017. I only did the one 21-day fast.
[58:06] Ashley James: So you did a one 21-day fast, a 109 saunas, took supplements, you meditated, locked in a circle, and colonics?
[58:16] Troy Reicherter: It was on the first six-month period.
[58:17] Ashley James: Okay, so you did a ton of stuff. And then you kept taking your blood every six months. So from here when you did all those things, how much time went by to the biggest drop?
[58:29] Troy Reicherter: About two years.
[58:30] Ashley James: Two years. Okay. So two years after the huge amount of detoxing, you spent a whole summer detoxing.
[58:36] Troy Reicherter: Activated charcoal began in August of 2016. And I’ve been doing it pretty much ever since except, as I said, I took a little break in 2017 because I was burned out. And I didn’t know what my test results were. I didn’t know if I was doing anything.
[58:51] Ashley James: You added the activated charcoal and you didn’t do much else and then you saw the sudden drop. But you really believe that that’s from the gene depression?
[59:00] Troy Reicherter: It could be part of the activated charcoal definitely. But I took more activated charcoal in the previous period where there was a tiny little drop. So there’s something else going on. I think gene expression is…
[59:11] Ashley James: It makes sense. Because like you said, Yeah, you took activated charcoal, and you even stopped all those other things, and you weren’t doing much. And then you got the biggest drop, but you had done a bunch before. Saunas could change our genetic expression, and the fast can change our genetic expression. And so you’re looking at accumulation of all these things could have done it. So you’ve got this big drop and then six months later, it goes up a little bit. I mean, it’s not up like it was at the beginning, but it goes up a little bit. And then it comes back down. What happened here to have it come back down? What did you do in this six-month period?
[59:53] Troy Reicherter: Just the usual. There was no other special intervention. I think after the spike it just naturally starts to come back down.
[1:00:04] Ashley James: Why did it spike?
[1:00:05] Troy Reicherter: Because when you fast again, remember the fat cells are shrinking. And so they’re basically going into emergency starvation mode. So they’re throwing out everything that they don’t absolutely need. Your body is just conserving everything it can keep and it’s throwing away everything I can throw away, gobbling things up, catabolizing things, breaking them down and you know, your body has more enzymes to work on them, but they’re overwhelmed by the amount of toxicants being tossed out by the fat.
[1:00:34] Ashley James: So this spike right here in December 2017 was after a fast?
[1:00:39] Troy Reicherter: Yeah.
[1:00:39] Ashley James: And so you’re saying that it’s actually a good thing that you have a spike there, because your body was in the process of releasing the toxins?
[1:00:47] Troy Reicherter: Yeah. It would be wonderful if we could do this for every one of those chemicals out there. And also if we could do a separate test at each point in time from the fat cells themselves. So because you probably see the opposite. You know, if it goes up here, well, it’s probably because it just got dumped out from somewhere else where it’s mostly stored.
[1:01:07] Ashley James: Yeah. And so now in June of 2018, you have a drop again, what is this? Did you do a fast here?
[1:01:16] Troy Reicherter: The fast? There’s a tab at the top, indicating where the fast were.
[1:01:20] Ashley James: Oh, okay.
[1:01:21] Troy Reicherter: So this is between fasts, it appears that by a year later, that was June 2018, prior to the fast of 2018, it had gone back down slightly below the level from a year before.
[1:01:33] Ashley James: Now what I’m seeing here, I just realized, because you pointed out where the fasts are – I’m seeing that after every fast or at least after these fast, it looks like there’s a little bit of a spike, but it’s always lower. So it’s like constant, like little steps, but it’s constantly getting lower, which is cool.
[1:01:55] Troy Reicherter: That was my last big takeaway. So for the DDE, it went from 22,600 in June of 2017. Then after the after a 30-day fast, it spiked up to 34,200 in December, then it dropped back down all the way down to 22,000 and then after a 40-day fast. So this is a fast of an extra third in length, an extra 10 days, it spiked much less, it only spiked up from 22,000 up to 25,600. So you see, you would expect, if I had lots and lots and lots of fat reserves, or toxic reserves in my fat, like bottomless, you would expect a longer fast to make a higher spike. But the reverse was true, it was a lower spike. So that’s showing that I really am cleaning out the bottom of the barrel. And there’s going to be this huge, huge drop is going to follow almost certainly. I don’t know exactly how long since I did two fast within two years, or within one year, and I did a longer length of fasting. It may be the gene expression will take longer to go back to its default settings. I hope not. Because I’d really like to get the data out there. But I’m continuing to take blood measurements or blood samples, which I will send in when I get enough together for the lab to do it. And so I took blood in June of this year, I’ll take it in December, and then again next summer. I think looking at all these numbers, if a 21 – day fast caused about a 60% drop, then an additional 70 days of fasting, along with another two years of activated charcoal, I think we’re going to see probably greater than a 90% drop for both these chemicals. But we won’t know until we have the numbers. I mean these are not just speculation, these numbers are real from lab – an independent lab. They have no way of knowing what I’m doing. All they do is just do a mass spectrometer test, which is why it costs so much. You know, they’re testing individual molecules as they pass through and weighing them to tell you which one is what size and everything. And they couldn’t care less what I’m up to or what my results are, they’re just giving me the absolute fact on this. So I’m speculating that we’re going to have a greater than 90% drop in the end. It would have been nice if a 21-day fast all by itself had done that. But it obviously didn’t work out that easily.
A 21-day fast plus all the other interventions did over two years make a 60% drop, which is pretty astonishing by itself. The two year delay was a big surprise. I in the beginning, was thinking I should try to test as soon after the fast as possible thinking, “Oh, I don’t want to contaminate myself by eating stuff.” I was completely wrong in that. And the activated charcoal has probably changed everything even with no other interventions, seeing a gradual decrease over time, if the theory is correct. Which we’re not sure of now, we can’t really be sure of anything. So like the January 2017 drop from 13.37% from baseline down to 20.68% from baseline, which I assumed had been due activated charcoal. I can’t make that assumption anymore, because it could very well have also been due to the change in gene expression. We don’t know. These things have to be done separately and repeated over and over by different people and then we’ll know more. So I do believe the activated charcoal is working. But I can’t say for sure from the data that I have proven that it is working. We can’t say for sure that my blood lipid levels have dropped a lot as far as my total body toxicity, that would require more testing.
[1:06:05] Ashley James: And you’ve got your friend who’s now just taking activated charcoal. So we’re going to figure out whether just activated charcoal alone is going to help. Now how much is he taking? I talked to poison control a few weeks ago about… and that’s a funny story for another time, but I talked to poison control and they said you’d have to take like a cup of it a day to actually absorb, it’s not like just take two capsules. It’s a significant amount of activated charcoal someone needs to take to absorb toxins. How much do you recommend people take? How did you figure out how much to take?
[1:06:45] Troy Reicherter: Well, first of all, poison control is dealing with someone who’s just massively adjusted something that’s about to kill them, right? So they’re giving them massive amounts to try to save them, that’s an emergency situation. What we’re talking about is over prolonged periods of time taking activated charcoal probably as directed, and trying to interrupt the enterohepatic pathway. So you can read my book about what we know about activated charcoal, you can do your own research, there are some downsides to it, it will interfere with certain drugs like birth control pills, things like that. Maybe headache medicine.
[1:07:23] Ashley James: Because it absorbs those toxins.
[1:07:25] Troy Reicherter: Right. It will absorb the toxicants that you don’t want, but it will also decrease the nutrients in your food, because some of those will get taken out, they won’t make it to your intestine.
[1:07:37] Ashley James: So you take it in between meals?
[1:07:39] Troy Reicherter: Personally I started out taking it kind of staggered throughout the day. And then after that I just simplified it and I take it with meals, or maybe right after a meal. The amounts I was taking in the types is kind of complicated to go into, you can read my book about my experiences. I tried to make my own capsules, I would not recommend doing that. The stuff is more powdery than you can believe. It gets in everything and you’re gonna have a hard time not breathing it in, just buy it already made, it’s way better. So I use different kinds. It’s all in my book. And one of the kinds I was using got discontinued. So I couldn’t take that even if I wanted to. Right now, the kind of that I believe my friend is taking, I think this is what we agreed on, is activated coconut charcoal. They’re 1200 milligrams per capsule. And it says to take two to three hours before a meal. And anyway, so I think he’s taking the recommended dosage. I’m pretty sure I took more than the recommended dosage myself because I was the guinea pig and I wasn’t too worried about it. I just wanted to get those levels down. It’s all in the book how much I took. But definitely there’s every reason to believe that it’s getting things out of your body. The question is, is there any harm in it? There’s some speculation that there may be some acrylamide in it. But from what I can tell the acrylamides are formed from incompletely carbonated substances like burnt toast, you know, meat burned on the grill, but you didn’t burn it completely. So those are cancer causing, very carcinogenic. So I think it’s probably not that way because these are baked at a very, very high temperature. And so I think it’s completely carbonized. That’s the whole point of it. Don’t try to substitute anything else for activated charcoal, it’s got to be real activated charcoal. It’s completely different from the kind of charcoal that we cook with. That’s a whole different.
[1:09:47] Ashley James: Don’t try to make your own activated charcoal with burnt toast.
[1:09:51] Troy Reicherter: Exactly. So I’ve had a few friends who I I asked about if they wanted to be my guinea pig and volunteer to do this. And they said no, not enough is known about activated charcoal. But I suspect that just eating falafel or hamburgers or french fries is probably way more dangerous for you than activated charcoal.
[1:10:09] Ashley James: I think it’s hilarious when people get freaky about supplements like a vitamin C. They just go, “Well, there’s not enough research.” And yet they don’t think twice about taking a pharmaceutical. No, no question about taking pharmaceutical. Just think of all the drugs that have been taken off the market for killing people, were all drugs that were first approved to be on the market and approved to be safe. So we have to like, really remember that. Yes, it is up to us to advocate for our health and to look into the research. Don’t go blindly taking drugs and don’t go blindly taking supplements. Do your Googling and look into it for yourself, you can look at NIH, you can see that there’s so many studies, I’m sure there’s so many studies about activated charcoal. There’s so many studies about many things that we can look into before we jump into it. But to just blindly go, “Well, there’s enough studies about this. So I’m just not going to do it.” But I’m sure that your same friends will go to the drugstore and take an Advil without questioning it.
[1:11:12] Troy Reicherter: Right. Yeah. And like I put in my book, those warnings with the drug commercials that we see on TV, they’re frightening. And yet they just say it as if, “Oh, it’s no problem. Maybe you know, you’ll die you bleed to death. Yeah, you might be suicidal and on and on.” And oh, but talk about fasting and people freak out. They just make it sound as if “Oh, it’s the end of the world you want me to die, I’m going to die.” You could die if you fasted long enough or in the wrong way, you could also die if you just walk across the street without looking, you know.
[1:11:45] Ashley James: Let’s talk a bit about fasting for those who’ve never done it. I’ve only done it for almost three years, like a 2.9-day fast. I haven’t gotten to three yet, and I want to do more. But one of my Naturopaths scared me, she goes, “My boyfriend in college, I had to take him to the hospital after five days because his electrolytes were off and I’d basically pick him up and carry him to the hospital.” So she was so afraid, she tried to talk me out of it or she basically said you need to find a different doctor to monitor you for your fast because I won’t do it. And that kind of put the fear of God into me, and I know fasting is healthy, but it’s also, we got to take precautions. So let’s talk to the people who’ve never done fasting. Give us some advice.
[1:12:35] Troy Reicherter: Well, I can’t give medical advice, per se.
[1:12:37] Ashley James: So maybe based on your experience.
[1:12:40] Troy Reicherter: Yeah. I just want to be careful how I phrase it. So well I I’m a historian and history teacher. And so I have known for a long time about all the fasting that has gone on throughout world history. And in my book there’s one section about a brief history of fasting where I give an overview of this. So I’ve known people have done enormously long fasts, I mean 40 days is like the gold standard. You know, the Pythagoreans used to do it. They say Moses did it. You know, Jesus did it. The Buddha did it. It’s on my website. And so I have always wanted to try a 40-day fast. Fear is a huge, huge part of it and not knowing what’s going to happen and the strangeness of it all. Plus the fact that, well, your body produces a chemical called ghrelin and ghrelin makes you hungry. And we’ve all had the experience of maybe going all day without eating. And at the end of the day, you’re irritable, you’re frustrated, you got a headache, you just feel like you’re going to die. And it’s like give me some food right now before I kill somebody.
[1:13:41] Ashley James: It’s called ‘hangry.’
[1:13:43] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, right. So we’ve all been there. And then people imagine, “Oh, my God, when you fast, it must be like that only worse.” Well, it’s not exactly. It depends on how much you had to eat the day before. There was one time when I I’ve had a huge meal. Probably shouldn’t have. But I had a huge meal before I believe it was the 2015 fast. I didn’t feel anything the whole next day, I wasn’t at least bit hungry. It wasn’t till the second day, that I started to even feel like hey, I’m hungry. But generally speaking, the first day after you don’t eat anything, you don’t feel very good. It’s like the experience we’ve all had of having to help someone move and there was nothing convenient, and you just don’t eat until really late. But it’s that next day after that usually is the worst day. Usually that’s when, I just refer to it as hitting the wall. This last time even though I did a 30-day fast two years ago, last year I did the 40-day fast and I still felt that way. Maybe it’s not going to be as bad as the first time you do it. The first time will be the worst time probably. But I honestly felt like someone had just hit me right in the head with a sledgehammer, just right between the eyes. And I don’t recall if I took anything for it. But I mostly just laid on the couch all day and just moan and groan because I felt horrible. But the day after that, it passes – ghrelin, your body basically says, “All right, you’re obviously not getting any food. So stop making this stuff.” It’s just like, you know, you get a bad injury and after a while it goes numb, because your body’s to stop sending that pain signal. So you stop feeling hungry in the ordinary sense. There’s still a certain sense that, “Hey, I should eat something.” But it’s not that urgent need that you’re used to. And I’m not going to say the rest of the fast is fun or easy. But it’s not nearly what you think it is. You feel euphoric sometimes, you feel light, it has to be built up too though.
Like I said, begin with two days, or three days. I mean, if you’re going to go ahead and do two, why not do that extra third day, which feels a lot better than the second day. And that’s the day when your body’s really, I think getting the most work done to repair and rebuild and rejuvenate anyway. But I will just stick with that. What I did in Taiwan, I was reading a lot about fasting and I knew people that required me to fast before I went and did their meditation. So I tried to fast all by myself. And it was like abortive two-day fast and I thought I was going to die. Literally, I thought this is it. My parents are going to read about in the paper, where they’re going to get that call, “Your son died over here in this apartment in Taiwan.” What a bad way to go, right? Just you all alone. Scared to death, your hearts palpitating you’re thinking, you’ve never had that feeling of hitting the wall before and you’ve never gone for more than a day without eating. So fear is making all these hormones come out into your bloodstream and freak you out. But after that, I did another attempt and I made a three day fast. And I just did a whole bunch of three-day fast. I don’t remember how many, five or 10. I mean I did a lot of three-day fast before I dared to go for four and five days. And then you start to have some experience built up. You know what to expect. I think your body learns too. I can’t really explain how, but you feel like your body is just not panicked. Not just your mind, but your body kind of like, “Okay, I see what’s going on here.” And I think there’s a deep learning in the cells that takes place where you don’t feel that bad. You’re okay with it. Plus, you know, also the experience and the sense of not being freaked out. You start to really feel like you can do anything. You’re walking around after 10 days of not eating, 15 days.
Last year, when I did my long fast, I went to a Vietnamese temple, I actually put that on my YouTube channel. And afterwards, I was talking to the monks and nuns and the person who had invited me to the temple told an elderly monk passing by that I hadn’t eaten for however many days – it was 27 days, he just laughed and shook his head. He said I don’t believe it. And I said, “Look at how thin I am.” So people even in traditional like that where fasting is a big part of what they do, they still don’t believe it. It’s like you can’t go that long. You can if you have the fat reserves that it takes. And you know, if you’ve checked with your doctor, of course, you’re not pregnant or expecting to be pregnant, you’re not breastfeeding, you’ve checked with all the contraindications that there could possibly be with your with your physician, definitely do that. And then take it slow. As I said, as long as you have fat to burn and you’re a healthy adult, you can keep going lot longer than you’d think. It’s a great feeling. It’s a good feeling to feel like, well, you almost feel like you’re in heaven or something. It’s like, whatever happens in the world around me doesn’t matter. Because I’m okay, I’m up on this other plane floating around doing things just the realm of pure energy. It’s a pretty cool experience, but it is grueling. I’m not saying it’s easy. I mean, 40 days, every day, it was like, “Oh my God, I’m only on day 25. I’m only on day 26.” Time seems to fly ordinarily. Like my summer is flying by this year. I can’t believe we’re almost halfway through the summer. But when you’re fasting, it doesn’t feel that way. It’s like it takes a long, long, long time to get to eating again. And you have to try really hard not to think about eating. It’s not easy. You know getting up, sometimes it’s hard, you have to really just get up slowly so you don’t get lightheaded. You’re not going to get much sleep or at least I don’t, a lot of insomnia, weakness, you have to really plan what you do, you can’t plan to be doing heavy labor, or running a marathon. Walking is pretty strenuous, you can do that. But I wouldn’t ride a bike up a hill at that time. If you can do that, more power to you. But I wouldn’t recommend planning on it. Just doing the fast by itself is grueling enough, it’s hard to take a lot of willpower. But once you’ve done it, I mean, I’ve never run a marathon. And I’ve never given birth, you know, I’ve never done those 24-hour training things they do in the army. I’ve heard people talk about it. I’ve never climbed Mount Everest. And fasting is kind of like that, I think. When you’re done with it, you feel like nothing. If I can do that I can do anything, nothing can faze me. And then of course, you know the great feeling that you get knowing that you’re detoxing. And a lot of health professionals like to say there’s no proof that any detox works, well check my numbers, check my website, because I can prove that it does work. Exactly which components of my plan work to what degree it still remains to be seen. But definitely, it is working. And I think fasting is the main component – supplements along with it, activated charcoal I believe are making a big difference as well. If I was doing this without fasting, I don’t think you’d see these drops at all. I have no reason to believe that. It’s a great feeling. When you’re doing it, there’s there’s moments of feeling great, there’s moments of feeling lousy. And when it’s all done, yeah, you feel much, much, much better in practically every way. And read my book about all the research into fasting. I mean, it’s one of the only ways known to grow new stem cells, to rejuvenate stem cells. Definitely, it’s been found to grow new brain cells in rats. So there’s a dispute now over the growing of brain cells, how much is really happening when you do other things, but I think fasting definitely appears to be doing that as well. HGH levels go up, all kinds of brain chemicals that stimulate your brain increases, it appears to be helping with increasing longevity and a decrease in pathology in every way across the board. Yeah.
[1:21:54] Ashley James: Yeah, Dr. Goldhamer has a fasting clinic and so he studied well over 30,000 people. And he’s been publishing but he doesn’t study what you’re studying, which is to see the decrease of these toxicants. But he’s studying like, whether cancer goes away and heart disease goes away, and diabetes goes away. And he’s published and he talks about this in Episode 230. He published this one woman came in with cancer and 30 days later didn’t have cancer anymore. But they’ve accumulated so much information about the benefits of water only fasting. And he says that on day three, something really amazing happens in the body, and you mentioned this, the body starts digesting its own pathological tissue. So the body starts digesting cancer and cysts, you know, ovarian cysts go away and scar tissue and just the not needed tissue in the body. And even on a cellular level, they’re seeing that the cells kind of clean up. So it’s like a house cleaning for the body. And then on day five is when they see the spiking human growth hormone and they see the spike in stem cells. So even in adults, which, you know after you’re about 24 years old, there’s very little stem cells in your body. But after a five-day fast, the body has a huge spike in stem cells. So by day three it starts cleaning up the junk and then by day five, it starts to regenerate new healthy tissue. I mean, that’s how you’d clean your house, right? First you take out the junk then you sort everything and clean it. So it’s like Marie Kondo for yourselves. We’re just cleaning everything and reorganizing everything and you’re seeing great results. And I love your first big result, which is, you did everything. And now you’re like, “Okay, what worked?” Right? And you published it in your book. Of course, they can go to your website to get the link to buy your book, of course, we’re gonna have the link to it as well, in the show notes. What’s the name of your book?
[1:24:09] Troy Reicherter: Detox Fast.
[1:24:10] Ashley James: Got it. So simple, easy to remember. You had mentioned the family that was back in 2005. Back in 2005, you mentioned a family that took all of their levels of, was it PCB?
[1:24:27] Troy Reicherter: They mentioned the PCB levels and also the PVDE levels, maybe some other things. It was an Oakland Tribune article.
[1:24:34] Ashley James: And I remember seeing that on Facebook. It’s kind of a video that circulated around or a story that circulated around. They didn’t do a fast though they just went organic, right? Do you remember the results from just going organic?
[1:24:49] Troy Reicherter: Well, I think they had been eating organic, basically, you know, shopping at Whole Foods just as a custom. And they didn’t do a before and after, they just did the one measurement just kind of to see. I think the reporter was Douglas Fisher, and they just got some grant money to just see what’s in people’s blood around here in the Bay Area, an average family.
[1:25:11] Ashley James: There’s a different story, I’ll see if I can find it. But there’s a different story of a family. It was like in the Midwest, and they went from eating the standard American diet too and they did a blood test. And then I guess a month later, a few months later, they are just eating organic, they saw a decrease, not levels, like you’re seeing with everything you’re doing. But they saw a decrease. And it’s substantial, I mean, we need to as a baseline, eat organic, it just makes sense that it’s so easy to choose the cheaper option, the conventional grapes versus the organic grapes, because you can’t see the chemicals, the toxicants you can’t see them, but they’re there. So we have to choose organic because if you choose the cheaper food, they call it conventionally grown, which is silly. Conventionally grown should be organic, because that’s what it already always has been. But if we choose the cheaper option, we’re paying in our health, we’re still paying. My husband said yesterday, there’s no free lunch, you can’t get a free lunch in life. You’re just robbing Peter to pay Paul. So we’ve got to choose organic. That’s the number one thing that we need to do every day.
[1:26:21] Troy Reicherter: Try to be vegetarian.
[1:26:22] Ashley James: And try to reduce or eliminate meat as much as possible. Because again, what’s contained in the meat is all the toxins that the animal ate, right? My husband who went vegan just overnight, he was the biggest meat lover to all of a sudden, completely vegan overnight, which surprised me. I came kicking and screaming into eating whole foods plant based, but he but he did it overnight. And he said you know pigs don’t sweat like you know, like a dog pants, right? But we sweat, at least we’re sweating out toxins, but pigs don’t. Pigs – they’ll store toxins much more in their meat. So just considering it for those who eat meat. If you’re going to eat meat, hopefully you can eat less of it or choose more vegetables, choose organic vegetables or choose organic, free range meat. But just know that in the food, there are these chemicals, right? And then how we can get rid of them is by reading your book and experimenting ourselves. Doing small fasts working up to maybe bigger fast, sauna, taking activated charcoal. I really like chlorella. Have you experimented with chlorella?
[1:27:38] Troy Reicherter: It was one of the things I took that first. Yeah, the first year yeah, it would be great if we could do tests on all the different chemicals that are in us because there are so many that we know are there. There were some other results that I got back that were interesting. There were seven pesticides that had blood lipid concentrations high enough that they gave me a before and an after number. And they are a little bit uncertain because they’re in such small amounts. When the lab gives you back the results, they put a little marker J next to it saying that it is basically an amount less than the lowest calibration equivalent. So this is the best they could do though with a mass spectrometer there was six of the seven that were measured all went down.
[1:28:22] Ashley James: And what are these?
[1:28:22] Troy Reicherter: So one was called nonachlor trans. So this was 8,910 parts per trillion in my initial measurement. And then in the June 2018 measurement, it was 4,250 parts per trillion. So that one decreased by 52%.
[1:28:40] Ashley James: What is it?
[1:28:41] Troy Reicherter: Oh, these are pesticides.
[1:28:42] Ashley James: Okay.
[1:28:43] Troy Reicherter: Six of seven different pesticides.I think they tested for 13. Some of them were in such small amounts that they just kind of said can’t even detect it, or don’t even know what to say.
[1:28:52] Ashley James: Is that before? Because you you pretty much always eat organic.
[1:28:58] Troy Reicherter: It’s complicated because when they do these tests, they have to have a – what do they call it? A lab blank. So you have to pay for it too, the same amount is for your blood. Suppose I had two samples there, there’ll be your blood before or your blood after. And then there’s a third thing that they have to test, which is a substance where they put in a known amount, so that they can use that to calibrate the machine, and you have to pay for that the same as for your blood. So that’s part of why the tests are so expensive. And it’s better to do bundles of four instead of bundles of two. You know, then you’re paying for five measurements and four of what you want, instead of paying for three, only to have what you want. So sometimes the lab blank amount determines the detectability amount. So it’s complicated. And these were the ones, going through the numbers that I thought were impressive. There was the nonachlor trans, which went down 52.54%, hexachlorobenzene – you might have heard of, this one started at 7,840 parts per trillion, and then its lowest was June 2018 – 3,250. So that’s a 58.54% decrease. Then there’s chlordane oxy, started at 3,380 parts per trillion and it went down to 1,460 parts per trillion in December of 2018 measurement. That’s a decrease of about 56.8%. The halogen went up a little bit, it started out at 2,920 and it was 3,000 in the end. Maybe because the spike last longer, maybe it has something to do with the way the enzyme receptors act on it. And then HCH beta started at 1,840. It went down to 573, so a 68.85% drop. Chlordane alpha cis started at 1,540 and it dropped down to 833 for a 45% drop. And then mirex started at 1,230 parts per trillion went down to 517 parts per trillion, 57.96% drop. So these are some of those pesticides whose residues are not only on the food, but just scattered throughout the whole world now in the dust and we breathe everything. They don’t break down, they don’t go away.
[1:31:28] Ashley James: So you eat primarily organic, but we’re still exposed to them. You’re saying it’s like through water and air and contamination of soil sometimes. And what about glyphosate? Did you test for that?
[1:31:41] Troy Reicherter: No, unfortunately. I do have quite a bit on that in my book. But glyphosate, it appears that its water soluble. So what everyone is saying, although I’d like to see more proof of this is that it does not bioaccumulate, but that it passes through your body quickly. Recently, there was a study done, you can find online down in Southern California, where they tested people in the 90s. And then again recently, and they were testing the urine. So it had gone up dramatically, dramatically over the last 20 years, because there’s so much more of it in the environment, apparently. But it seems to be that it’s more like the phthalates, it’s the plastic softener is that pass through your body in a short period of time. I did find some evidence online that that might not be entirely true. And glyphosate is just one of the ingredients in roundup, although that’s the main one. So there may be other things going on there, probably it’s a much more complicated story. It’s been implicated in non Hodgkin’s lymphoma, for sure. So it’s probably causing cancer, even though they’re still spraying it everywhere. I would love to see more testing on all kinds of things like that. And then like lawns, whenever you see a beautiful lawn with no weeds in it, almost certainly they’re putting down products that have 24D inside of it, which is one of the main ingredients in Agent Orange, you know, and if I said I’m going to come and spray Agent Orange on your lawn, you’d freak out. But if I say I’m going to use Scott’s organics and such as Scott, such and such product, and I have some of the product names listed in my book, then you’d say, “Oh, yeah, sure everyone’s doing that.” Why not? I want my lawn to look nice. I don’t want to go pull weeds, I’ll just put this down. And then all the things with leaves naturally just die. Well, they’re growing themselves to death because of this chemical, which is no good for people. And it’s been found in streams all over the place. It’s been proven that people who apply it, you know, it gets on the kids, because they play in the grass.
[1:31:55] Ashley James: Oh, yeah. And the pets.
[1:33:45] Troy Reicherter: Pets.
[1:33:45] Ashley James: We have a big spike in cancer for dogs. I think it was like one in two dogs get cancer. I heard some crazy number. But just think about it, your dog basically lives in your house almost all the time and then when it gets out, it’s running through pesticides.
[1:34:01] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, exactly. So there’s so much stuff out there that we don’t think about, it would be great to test for all of it. And I don’t know what levels we would see. I don’t know if anyone knows that. Like, I was testing these because they’re famous. And we know they’re in the body in large amounts. But it could be the 24D is in my blood lipids to a higher degree than then PCBs. I don’t know. It’s all around us. But it’s been noticed in Canada. I think almost 200 municipalities have outlawed it. Whereas here, they’re just spraying it and not thinking anything about it. And those are just a couple of examples.
[1:34:38] Ashley James: Yeah, I had Dr. Stephanie Seneff on my show a few times. She’s a PhD, MIT top research scientist. And her background is not in the body and understanding the body. But she understands how to look at research. She is just like seeing the matrix, right. And she can see all the data and be able to understand it. And so her and a bunch of other researchers have been looking at glyphosate and its correlation with other diseases, Well, it’s interesting, and she talks about this in our interviews that glyphosate binds to heavy metals, and will release the heavy metals. So let’s say mercury or aluminum, right, it’ll bind into aluminum, and then it’ll release the aluminum when there’s a pH change. So let’s say we eat the glyphosate because we’re eating the hamburger, right, and the cow ate glyphosate, because it was on his corn that he was fed. And so now we’re eating concentrated amounts of glyphosate, which is bound to heavy metals. It gets into our digestive tract, and now we’re ready to urinate it out. When blood changes to a different fluid -so cerebral spinal fluid, or when blood changes to urine, it changes pH. So they’re finding that glyphosate releases heavy metals in the brain, and heavy metals in the kidneys. And in Sri Lanka, they banned glyphosate in the rice paddies when enough of the farmers got kidney disease from it. And that’s because there’s accumulation of the heavy metals and the kidneys as the body was trying to expel the glyphosate. So it might be water soluble, but what it’s leaving behind are the heavy metals, it’s depositing them in the kidneys and the brain. So there’s a little tidbit of information about glyphosate and one of the many reasons why we should eat organic and also advocate for our neighbors, and our schools, golf courses near you, but all the properties near you to not use these chemicals.
You know, I wish we could create a movement where weeds are beautiful, you know. I mean, they’re beautiful flowers. They’re nice and yellow. You’re looking across my lawn, you probably see about a million tiny little Buttercup flowers, and you know they’re beautiful. Why can’t we just love weeds and not poison our body by poisoning our planet. You know, if we think about our planet, and our body are one, everything we’re doing to our planet we’re doing to our body. You know it’s amazing that we have the separation of church and state in our head, we have this amazing like idea that we are somehow completely separated from what we’re doing to our environment. It’s just crazy. It’s, we are poisoning ourselves by poisoning our environment. So I love the research you’re doing. I love your passion about it. I love that you are an educator and an explorer, and that you want to help just give this information to as many people as possible. So hopefully we can start to create a movement around it. I urge listeners to donate because you take all those donations, and you pay for these labs yourself on a teacher salary. So there’s a Donate button on your website. Right? Can you talk a bit about that?
[1:38:03] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, yeah, the money would all go, there’s no administrative costs. It’s just kind of a side project, there’s no staff or anything like that. So it’s not like giving to the Red Cross, or you don’t know how much of your money is actually going to get to where you want it to go. It all goes in, that’s all I would pay for is just for more research, you know, I’ve got my blood tests that I want to do. My friend, just one person also doing the activated charcoal only intervention. And I’m interested to do clinical trials with all different aspects of this, and set them up with advice from professors that they could help, make sure that I don’t make any mistakes. And not just for toxicity, but also all aspects of fasting and holistic health, including, I think heart disease is a huge killer. And I would be willing to bet you anything, based on everything that I know that if a person does extended fast, and they do a before and after coronary calcium scan, which is a lot cheaper than these blood tests I’m doing. I think they’re only $200 each. I’d like to get a group of people to volunteer to do some… someone who’s got like a number of 50. Mine was zero, by the way. I was going to do myself, but I was already zero. So I think the fasting has a lot to do with that. And of course eating vegetarian and everything.
[1:39:31] Ashley James: My husband just did one, you know, he’s been vegan for a year and a half. And his was 02. And we’re like, oh, this is great. It’s pretty awesome what you can transform with this natural living, right?
[1:39:47] Troy Reicherter: Yeah. So I would love to do those kinds of experiments and then get in the news more and get more exposure and have more people start to donate. So please, if you’re interested in this kind of thing, don’t just trust that the big institutions are going to do this kind of research, because they don’t seem to be that interested in it. So it a little bit goes a long way. I mean, I was able to come up with two different chemical panels on my blood for eight different points in time for just $20,000. So if people were to give a few hundred thousand dollars, we could do quite a bit more than that.
[1:40:25] Ashley James: Yeah, and start getting volunteers to work with you and do a bigger study.
[1:40:30] Troy Reicherter: Definitely, yeah. Not just one person, because there’s going to be some kind of a spectrum out there of responses, you’re going to get to any intervention. So, you know, the more times you reproduce the experiment with different people, the better then you can really tell – how men do it, how women, how women react to these interventions, how older or younger people have different body types, and you name it. And then we can start to fine tune it and experiment with other things that may be going on in the body.
[1:40:57] Ashley James: So at the beginning, I asked you how you felt, like what the difference is? You said you felt like a superhero, like Superman after doing these fasts. But how do you feel like today, right now sitting here versus two years ago? You know, what’s your date? I mean, you were already healthy, right? So it’s not like a huge night and day, but you have significantly removed these toxicants from your body in the last two years. Do you notice a difference in the day to day quality of life for you?
[1:41:33] Troy Reicherter
I wish I could say yes, but I don’t know that. It’s that simple. I think what I would say is, I mean, I had been fasting for a long time, and I had been exercising and had been healthy. As you age, you start to notice aches and pains and maybe slowing down of energy. But I think that that’s happening at a much slower rate than it would be happening otherwise. And I think it’s not so much that, it’s just that I’m almost disappointed this summer that I don’t get to fast again.
[1:42:05] Ashley James: You could always just stop eating if you wanted to fast.
[1:42:08] Troy Reicherter: But that would throw off my experiment. Because you see I’m waiting. I’m going to wait a good two years from last year’s fast because I want to see those numbers drop. If I was to do it now, that would interfere with the gene expression and make a new spike. And you’d have to wait for all that to level out. So I can’t really do it.
[1:42:25] Ashley James: You’re making a sacrifice for us.
[1:42:27] Troy Reicherter: Well, not fasting is not exactly a sacrifice. But it’s just that I used to dread it. I mean, when I had to do that 21-day fast, I dreaded it and the 30 day fast. I really dreaded that. But then it got to be last year, and I was almost looking forward to that 40-day fast. And now I kind of feel like, “Hey, where’s my big long month of not eating?” I’m used to this now. And so it’s the first year and you know, for three years that I haven’t done a month or more of not eating. I have some Muslim friends. And when I hang out with them they do their Ramadan and you know I was doing my fast at the same time they were doing some of their Ramadan. And they were like, “So you’re eating at night, right?” I said no. Like, “Are you serious?” So they got quite a bit of respect for that. But of course, I was drinking all day, I’m drinking lots of water. But it’s like that. Even though it’s a it’s an ordeal, they look forward to it for the cleansing that they get from it and the spiritual satisfaction and I kind of miss it. I mean, I don’t know, it’s almost masochistic maybe. But but it’s pleasure and pain. It’s sometimes awful, but sometimes euphoric. And the whole process, you know, it’s just become a part of my life. And I think after this experiment is over, I might do a month a year of just no eating. I don’t know, because it feels so good. It feels so right.
[1:43:56] Ashley James: Yeah.
[1:43:57] Troy Reicherter: It’s not that everything changes for me and I was healthy before. It’s not like everything for me changed from night to day. But it could be that way for someone else who was pre diabetic and has all kinds of other issues going on. Definitely, it could make that kind of change for them. For me, it’s just been more of keeping things better than the average person, I guess. Yeah.
[1:44:23] Ashley James: And you’re preventing cancer, and other diseases from accumulated toxins.
[1:44:29] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, I like to think so. You know, scientists always say how do you know, where’s the evidence? So until we have a lot of people to do these tests, you get a number. Here’s that number 20 years later, but you know, 20 years later, how old will all of us be 20 years older, right? So we can’t always wait for all of that empirical data from all of these peer reviewed clinical trials to come out. Otherwise, it might be 100 years before scientists can agree, “Oh, this is a good thing for you.” In the meantime, we’re long gone, and our grandkids are alive, you know, or our great grandkids. So we have to make decisions based on the best evidence we have available right now. And a lot of times that flies in the face with what mainstream medical reputable people are saying, because they have to be careful of their reputation, and they don’t want to get sued. So they say what everyone else says, what seems to be safe, and they’re going to tell you fasting is dangerous. Don’t do that. How much training do they have in fasting? Zero, right. They’ve never done it. They’ve never seen anyone do it. They’ve never heard about it in med school. Of course, they’re going to say not to do it. But so that’s another caveat to the whole thing is pick a good doctor. I picked a doctor who’s into this kind of stuff. If you pick someone who’s not very open minded to it, you’re going to get told don’t do that. And, well, I’m not going to tell you to fast without talking to a doctor. But it’s up to you to choose a doctor. Just like choosing your own religion and choosing which church to go to, right? Choose a good doctor to go to. Well, I mean, if doctor says not to do it for a good reason, then yeah, if there’s something about your health, that definitely precludes fasting, then don’t do it. But if they’re just against it in general principle, then I’d say maybe you should shop around some more.
[1:46:13] Ashley James: You know, Dr. Alan Goldhamer, the fasting doctor. He has this story he tells about his mom. He got her to eat wholefoods, plant based no salt, sugar or oil years ago, and she tried to convince her friends to do it. And they all said she’s crazy and they kept eating the standard American diet. And now she’s, I think, gosh, she’s in her 90s for sure. And just doesn’t look like it. She looks like she’s in her 70s, she has energy like she’s in her 70s, she’s just running around, and super healthy. And she goes, you know, the worst part about this is, is that I can’t tell them, I told you so because they’re all dead.
[1:46:54] Troy Reicherter: That’s funny. That’s kind of how it is. Yeah, it’s like, if you wait till the end to tell someone that, then they’re not going to be there. So you have to be the one that does the right thing. Even though you get flack for it the whole time, you get told you’re crazy. And that’s another thing about fasting is if you choose to fast in a house where everyone else is dead set against it. And you go through that period of fear where you hit the wall, you’re going to be 10 times more scared. So if you choose to try to do this, after doing the research and checking with your doctor, it’s good to be surrounded by people that are supportive of what you’re doing.
[1:47:31] Ashley James: Yeah. Yeah.
[1:47:31] Troy Reicherter: Otherwise, it’s going to be very negative. Very scary. You’re probably going to get freaked out you’re never gonna try it again.
[1:47:36] Ashley James: Yeah, that’s why I like the True North Medical Center, which is Dr. Goldhamer’s place, because I think staying there’s like the cost of staying at a hotel. I think it’s something like $180 a night and includes all the lab tests, all the doctor’s visits, and they monitor you during your fast and then they help you refeed. That’s another thing before we wrap up the interview, how do you refeed safely?
[1:48:03] Troy Reicherter: Very stupidly, as you’ll see from my book. Yeah, I made some mistakes over the years. And and actually the worst mistake was last year after my 40-day fast. Yeah, it’s easy to sit back and say I’m going to do this, I’m going to do that, this is the right way to do it. Even with all my experience, things come up and my son’s birthday comes up and we were taking a trip to Taiwan and so I was I was kind of in a hurry. And so it wasn’t that I ate too much, although I did. What really hurt me was too much salt, you have to be very careful about dry things, anything the least a bit spicy because your stomach lining is very thin. And as I learned to my pain and suffering, and a story about near death experience almost. Well, that wasn’t maybe that bad, but it it’s in my book. I ate, I forget how many days after I’d broken the fast but there was some chips that I bought. And I was stuck in traffic and I was really hungry and I had one and then next thing you know you’ve eaten half the bag. And later that day I had some Mexican food, some some salty foods. Well, when you finish it fast, basically, your body is holding on to any salt that it can. It’s just clinging onto it. And so when you stop eating your body stops producing insulin. But then you start eating again, it over produces because it hasn’t done it in a while. And that makes your body hold on to salt, like you wouldn’t believe. And the salt makes your body retain water. And so my feet started to swell up. And then my leg started to swell up. And if that had gone all the way up to my heart, well, yeah, I would have had to run to the emergency room. And the problem is you don’t notice it until too late. So it’s like hours and hours and hours after you’ve consumed the thing you start notice how it’s funny, my feet are a little bit swollen. And then and I had to get on a plane to go to Taiwan. So which is you know, you’re going to be immobile in a seat where people tend to get edema anyway. So it was a really bad, perfect storm. So be very, very, very careful about all of that. And that would be the gold standard, is to stay at a place like that where someone else will prepare your meals for you. Because I’m telling you, you think you have self control. And I have self control to do a 40-day fast. But it’s when you’re told you can eat but only this much.
[1:50:32] Ashley James: Yeah, the True North Medical Center, I have the printout. And they say like for every seven days you fasted you get one day of juicing. And then after that for every seven days you fasted, it was like one or two days of juicing and then one or two days of just soups. And then you do just raw vegetables. And then so it’s like this gradual process and it’s only certain kinds of vegetables. If you did a 40-days fast, you could spend like the next week, just just gently, slowly refeeding into it and they deliver the food to your room. So that you don’t have to go to the cafeteria and then get tempted by the food. But that’s really important. The refeeding part is to be gentle and slow and have that level of self-control. And I love that you pointed out about salt. One thing that Dr. Goldhamer says is that you could quit salt after a fast because you have retrained your tongue, basically to taste salt. So now all of a sudden you eat some celery and you’re like, “Oh my gosh, the celery is so salty.” Or you just eat a salad with nothing on it, no dressing and you’re like bursting with flavors, because you’ve retrained your your tongue and your brain to sense the flavors in food that you never sensed before. So after a fast it’s like you get this reset, and all sudden food tastes amazing. You don’t add any seasoning to it. So he encourages people after a fast not have any salt in the house and don’t add salt to your food. Because you’ll be able to taste foods, I mean, no one can hear you’re nodding, but you’re nodding and smiling. Did you notice that after a fast the food tastes so much better?
[1:52:21] Troy Reicherter: Yeah, definitely. Your tongue is much more sensitive. If you just have a piece of bread, you can taste the sugar and the salt in the bread, you don’t have to put anything on it. I wish that I was as scientific as they are about breaking the fast. I I’ve had my own method, which is in the book, which is not advice to others, but just explanation of what I did and why and how it worked out for me and what I think for the future. I usually break it fast with a smoothie but a warm one, never cold. You know, that’s the Chinese medical thing, and then lots of soup, vegetable soup, I’d go very light on the seasonings. And then as far as the length for myself, I think my gut feeling was after this last time that I would basically take the length of time that I fasted in the future, cut it in half and add one day to it. So for a 40-day fast, I would take 21 days to get back to eating a normal meal. And then I divide that up into three parts where, you know, three different stages, stage one, stage two, stage three of equal length. Each one would be about a week long, if I was to do another 40-day fast, that would I think be very safe. And I don’t know if it would be as perfect. I’m sure a century from now, they’ll be so scientific about all of these things. They’ll know exactly what to do. And all kinds of new products will be available, but for myself doing it at home and not having someone else prepare things for me. That’s what I came up with for myself that I think will work well. And as I say, not not perfect by any means. Not something that won’t be changed in the future. But I wrote it down in the book, so I just had such a strong gut feeling that this is the way I will do it in the future. Even though I haven’t done it yet. I thought it would be important to mention to people that that’s what I’m telling myself for now. I should have done.
[1:54:18] Ashley James: Yeah, yeah. Awesome. Is there anything you’d like to say to wrap up today’s interview?
[1:54:23] Troy Reicherter: Well, just to mention, you can read the case study online at www.hhresearch.org. But to really understand what it was all about in terms of the history of fasting, the physiology of fasting, scientific discoveries, about the health benefits of fasting, all the considerations you have to make before fasting, and then all of my experiences from my very first fast 1993 up till now including all the lessons I’ve learned the hard way, all the modifications I made in my fast, and then just what it’s like day to day, because I have a log for each one of the fasts, even going back to the fast in 2007 that I did – what it’s like every day, you know, from beginning to end, how much weight you lose, what you feel like, it’s a lot more than you can put into a simple case study. And then at the end of my book, there’s also a history of toxicity. It’s a brief history, but it’s everything that the average person needs to know. And there’s quite a few practical tips about avoiding toxins and toxicants in your daily life. So I think it’s a good place to start, that was kind of my whole intent is to take a person from zero to 100. In terms of their understanding of this, you know, you may know nothing about chemicals and how big they are, how they interact with your body and other chemicals, where they are. And by the time you’re done with my book, you’ll be at the cutting edge, you’ll be ready to read any other book, and you’ll be able to have a conversation with anybody about pretty much anything on this topic. And you’ll know things that very few people know about fasting.
[1:55:53] Ashley James: That’s awesome. Well, thank you so much for sitting with us here in the garden, in the backyard to discuss fasting. I’m very fascinated with it. And I love that you’re doing these labs to determine how fasting and all the other things you’re doing to detox is helping. And this hypothesis about gene expression is wonderful. So it’s great. And we’re going to continue to follow up with you and hopefully, listeners will donate to help pay for the labs. And if anyone’s super interested in working with you, they can contact you. I’ll have all the information in the show notes of today’s podcast where they can reach out to Troy and then get your book also so for only $5 so that they can be well informed about detoxing toxins and fasting. So wonderful having you here. Thanks for following up with us. I look forward to hearing more interesting information in the future as everything unfolds.
[1:56:57] Troy Reicherter: Oh, thank you so much, Ashley. You know, I did think of one last thing I should have mentioned is that while we’ve seen a 60% drop in the blood toxicant levels for these chemicals that we measured, and we might see a 90% drop later, that doesn’t necessarily equate to the percentage drop you’re going to have in your chances of getting cancer, because it would appear from talking to the professors at UDub, that the way it works with these chemicals is not like other ways like asbestos and other types of things that induce cancer. What seems to be happening is there’s a certain threshold that gets crossed. And if you’re if you’re across that threshold, then there’s a chain reaction starts in the body, which basically creates antigens that make a chain reaction that cause – it’s as if you got stung by a bee and some people just pull up the bee and they’re fine, other people are allergic to it, and then they’ll have an allergic reaction and they’ll be unable to breathe, right? So it’s basically your body’s overreaction to detecting the presence of these chemicals in the first place. So when they cross that threshold, that your body detects them, not the enzymes I’m talking about, but different enzymes, then that causes cancer. So it may be that even a slight decrease. If you cross that threshold and get below it, then it may be that your chances of getting cancer, because of these chemicals has gone from 100% to zero percent, just like that. It’s like a light switch. It’s either off or it’s on. So you get below that level and stay there. And as far as cancer goes, it would appear that you’re not going to get it. So again, this is like the only way right now that is known to do something that that we’ve been told up till now can’t be done to reduce the level of these chemicals that are giving people cancer. So if you are interested in this, and you want to give it a try, or just find out more about how you can reduce the levels of these toxicants in anyone in your family, especially, especially the unborn, the babies that are on the way, you know how you could maybe get rid of some of this if you’re a woman of that age, before you have your own child, that could be all the difference to save them from some kind of problem later on.
[1:59:18] Ashley James: Yeah.
[1:59:18] Troy Reicherter: So that’s the bottom line that I think is so important. So thank you so much for having me. It’s been wonderful.
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