WELCOME STAFF AND READERS OF THE NORTH COAST JOURNAL (click this link)


Unpublished letter
Please read this link:  A Note (to all brains) about 'Lame Brains"
Also click this link for more information on the International University of Religion, Empathy and Science


UPDATED ON 11/16/13

The following are letters I have written and published in the Times-Standard and the HSU Lumberjack dating from 2003.  I took a 6 year break from writing letters in the T-S from 1998 to 2004.  Before 2004 the T-S published around 60 letters or more that I wrote between 1992 and 1998.  And between 1982 and 1990 the Del Norte Triplicate published over 100 letters I wrote when I lived there. 


“FISHER” DOESN’T GIVE ALL SIDES TO STORY

Anyone (student or professor) who has completed their general education requirements in critical thinking and the social sciences should be able to see through the flaws of the film “Antwone Fisher” which is a glorious success story about a survivor of child abuse and his therapist.

As a survivor of child abuse I feel compelled to write about the other side of the story when it comes to therapists and survivors. I have a high IQ and I was an honor student in both high school and college (Pi Gamma Mu). This may sound shocking, but I discovered that therapists in general are biased, they lack critical thinking skills, and they are non-supportive of critical thinking skills in survivors.

I found that in therapy, clients are not supposed to think critically about the schools of thought which therapists believe in. You are supposed to accept whatever your therapist tells you without thinking critically about where their thoughts come from and the scientific validity or invalidity of their theories. Instead of being encouraged to think critically, I was put down for thinking critically.

There can be a dark side to therapists which the public should know about; they can be blind, arrogant, anti-supportive and condescending. However, I did not give up on psychology as a science, especially when I discovered the difference between research psychology and therapeutic psychology. And that difference is a world of difference when it comes to critical thinking, honesty, intelligence and discovery.

Orion Palomar
Published in the Humboldt State University Lumberjack 1/22/03

ABUSE SURVIVOR SPEAKS

The month of April was designated “Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month” sometime in the 1980s. Awareness implies knowledge, and knowledge implies education. But as a survivor of child abuse I have to say there is not much awareness in the academic world when it comes to awareness of what a “survivor” is and what survives in survivors. There are plenty of theories. However, I realized upon going back to college that nobody in the academic world, on any level, could have understood me as a “survivor” because there is more to understanding and communication than theories. And I am not a theory. Nor am I a scientific model, or a mental image.

What survived in me was elementally human. But what is elementally human is beyond cultures, beyond art and music, beyond philosophy, beyond organized religion and beyond contemporary cutting-edge theories in the social and psychological sciences.

On this month’s cover of “National Geographic” a mother gazes into the eyes of a child who gazes into her eyes. Do we know what is elementally human? My parents and siblings couldn’t see it or reflect it. For that very reason, I became abused.

What is a survivor? What survives? I think of an important scene in the film “A Beautiful Mind” when Alicia Nash decides to stay with her brilliant, but schizophrenic husband. She holds his hand in her hand while touching his face and says: “This, is real.” She was referring to something which is elementally human. And that is something which transcends culture and cultures. And it transcends war and anti-war. It is an awareness of what survives.

But, who can see it? Who can reflect it? Those are inescapable questions for survivors who enter or re-enter college in America or in any culture. They are questions which still haunt me.

Orion Palomar
Published in the Humboldt State University Lumberjack
4/30/03

FOLLOW-UP LETTER

I am writing this letter as a follow-up to two letters (Jan 22 and April 30) which I wrote last Spring semester pertaining to child abuse and the academic and professional worlds of the social and psychological sciences. The reason why I wrote those letters is because I plan to give two presentations at HSU during this academic year. The letters were for the purpose of gaining the attention and interest of Lumberjack readers about these presentations.

The first presentation will be near the end of this semester and it will be titled “How I Became a Semantic Wild Child and a Victim Without a Culture.” The other presentation will be near the end of next semester and called “Survivor Myth, Survivor Image, Survivor Reality: seeking the truth about victims and survivors of child abuse.”

A year from now I expect to be on the major television news journals, CBS “60 Minutes”; NBC “Dateline,” and ABC “20/20.” The reason why I expect this is because I am going to launch a media news story: “Survivor of child abuse claims to be 50 years ahead of cutting-edge social and psychological sciences in understanding the effects of child abuse.” I will announce that it is going to take a Nobel prize-winning type effort to understand the enigmatic effects of child abuse, and why this effort is needed. I will explain that no such organized effort currently exists, and I will share my detailed plans for organizing and funding such an effort.

Usually in the sciences, when someone claims to be 50 years or more ahead of their time, they are expected to publish lengthy articles in major scientific journals to substantiate their claims. And then the rest of the scientific and academic communities wait for such articles to be published in periodicals which appear in university libraries. But I have no intention of taking that route. If journals want to publish what I have to say in my presentations, then that is fine. But, I expect to be on national television long before they get around to realizing that I am 50 years ahead of academics who publish and read those journals.

I don’t need publication in any major journals to show that I am 50 years ahead of the cutting-edges in the social and psychological sciences. All I need is 400 words in my next Lumberjack letter 30 days from now.

Orion Palomar
Published in the Humboldt State University Lumberjack
8/27/03

LOCAL MAN 50 YEARS AHEAD OF MODERN SCIENCE

As an enigmatic survivor of child abuse I had no choice but to become 50 or more years ahead of cutting-edge social and psychological sciences.

First it took me years to realize that I was an enigmatic survivor. My needs and problems as a survivor were enigmatic in the sense that present-day scientists could not understand how child abuse had affected me. I had to learn the cutting-edges of the social and psychological sciences in order to make that discovery. And I felt confident in teaching myself such material, considering that I graduated from my high school (Santana) as the most honored student in mathematics and science; and before I entered college I taught myself the first year of calculus, in three weeks, so successfully that my college math professor said I was the most brilliant student she ever had.

But over 30 years ago I dropped out of college for reasons which nobody could understand. It took me years to discover how it was all related to early child abuse; and it took me decades to heal the damage.

My most important discovery was that the social and psychological sciences were not advanced enough (to this day) to understand how child abuse had affected me with an enigmatic dissociation. This dissociation was a necessary part of a natural healing process which I observed and carefully recorded for over 20 years; I call it "Meta-Semantic Death, Meta-Semantic Numbness, Meta-Semantic Recovery." I had no choice but to discover the enigmatic nature of both the dissociation and the recovery process.

Progress is part of science. Progress means there are always phenomena in the present which scientists won’t be able to understand until sometime in the future. Otherwise, there would be no need for research. An honest science vigorously pursues enigmatic phenomena. But first the science has to acknowledge its existence.

There was a point in my life when I had to acknowledge that child abuse affected me in a way which modern scientists couldn’t understand. I had no choice but to pursue the unknown and make a discovery. I had to accept possibilities, and be open; that is what scientists and critical thinkers are supposed to do.

I lived a shattered life. But I discovered order and beauty in the fragments. And I saw beauty in science once again; and that beauty is sacred. No culture can claim it!

Orion Palomar
Published in the Humboldt State University Lumberjack
10/22/03

"SEMANTIC WILD CHILD" WILL UNLEASH KNOWLEDGE ON MEDIA

It’s me again, the “semantic wild child.” I wrote four letters last year pertaining to the effects of child abuse. I am writing this final letter to inform the Lumberjack readers of my website at www.humboldt1.com/~opalomar.

The website is about two presentations which I hope to give this semester: “How I Became a Semantic Wild Child and a Victim Without a Culture” in March and “Survivor Myth, Survivor Image, Survivor Reality” in April. In the second presentation I will make what will be arguably the three important announcements ever made to the world media pertaining to this subject matter.

Information about these presentations are on my webpage. My email address is opalomar@humboldt1.com. I need as many readers as possible to contact me so I can make arrangements with HSU to reserve a hall on campus for these presentations.

Please think about the following:

If social and psychological scientists want to know how child abuse affects people they are going to have to communicate with victims and survivors of child abuse rather than “communicate” with just the victims and survivors who fit the theories, images and models projected by their disciplines and schools of thought. Enigmatic victims and survivors are those victims who don’t fit the models, theories and images, and they don’t get any support because scientists are biased and they support only the victims and survivors who fit their preconceived theories, models and images.

If nobody shows the real beauty of science to them, then they will always think that science and scientists are ugly. And scientists will never be able to communicate with them in order to find out how child abuse affected them in ways which present-day science cannot understand. And if scientists cannot communicate with them, then there cannot be any progress. And without progress, science cannot exist because progress is a part of science.

Orion Palomar
Published in the Humboldt State University Lumberjack
2/11/04

GENTLENESS IS WHAT CAN HEAL THE WORLD
<>    I share my thoughts on the Times-Standard “Aftermath of Childhood Abuse” article on March 6th. The aftermath of my abuse has left me with the following insights and revelations.
    At a very young age I had to defend the good inside myself, the good inside my soul, before I had any kind of cultural identity or ethnic identity.
    There will always be this child in me, this person who needed (and needs) to have others to see the good in me, and needs to have others I can see the good in. I will always have this need forever.
    And this need is what makes me a human being. It isn’t culture or ethnicity which makes me a human being. Nor is it a religious affiliation which makes me a human being. Instead it is this need which makes me a human being, a person with a soul. And that need will never change.
    After writing over a hundred letters on child abuse published in the Times-Standard and the Del Norte Triplicate over the past twenty years, I realized that people in the world are generally not evolved enough to understand this need which is elementally human.
    The need has to be experienced, not theorized.
    I hope someday everyone in the world can view child abuse survivors as mirrors of themselves; our needs reflect what is elementally human.
    Be gentle with survivors.
    And learn gentleness through survivors.
    Gentleness is what heals the world and helps the world evolve.

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Eureka Times-Standard 3/31/04


FIGHTING CHILD ABUSE WILL TAKE SOME GUTS

    Lots of deep thoughts went through my mind after I saw the large 8/22 Times-Standard announcement for the regional Native American conference on child abuse hosted by Two Feathers in McKinleyville.  My most important thought is a question which should be on the minds of people in all cultures and races throughout the world.  And that question is: "What can a civilized society do for the victims of child abuse?" 
    The first thing people should know is that it hasn't happened yet!  What a civilized society can do for child abuse victims hasn't been done yet by any society. 
    A civilized society would show great care and concern for the victims of child abuse who have needs and problems which modern scientists presently cannot understand. 
    In a civilized society, counselors and therapists would stress the importance of further research to help them understand the victims and survivors whom they cannot understand.  Civilized counselors and therapists would make public their failures and limitations. 
    A civilized society would put together a Nobel prize-winning type effort to understand the effects of child abuse.  And scientists in a civilized society would inform the people that such an effort is required, and funds are needed. 
    Communities in a civilized world would respond with an international research and fundraising organization similar to the American Cancer Society. 
    None of this has happened yet.  But it can happen.  And Redwood Country could become world headquarters for a newly civilized world. 
    It requires only inspiration, and guts. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 9/22/04

HUMBOLDT COULD LEAD IN UNDERSTANDING ABUSE

    This is a reminder of my Sept 22 Times-Standard letter about a Nobel prize-winning type effort to understand the effects of child abuse. 
    I said that communities can be part of that effort the same way that the American Cancer Society raises funds for awareness and research about cancer. 
    I said that world headquarters for such an organization could be in Humboldt County and all it takes is guts and inspiration. 
    We will have a science committee and a religious committee. 
    The first agreement in our religious committee is that the question "What can a civilized world do for the victims of child abuse?" is a question that comes from the highest place. 
    The first agreement in our science committee is that regardless of where the question comes from, we agree that the answer is a Nobel prize-winning type effort to understand the effects of child abuse.  And we know that such an organized and focused effort currently does not exist. 
    These are simple agreements; not arguments.
    We will establish the brightest shining light in the world when it comes to scientific knowledge and research pertaining to child development and life span development.  And we will keep the light shining through world fundraising.  We will establish international headquarters and a beacon of knowledge. 
    More information will come in the new year, including a website. 
    We value and celebrate wisdom, science and critical thinking. 
    The future is ours to make and celebrate.  Make something beautiful.  Believe it! 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 1/9/05

GUTS, INSPIRATION ARE SADLY LACKING

    I have written some recent letters about a Nobel prize-winning type effort to understand the effects of child abuse and creating an organization to raise funds for such an effort.  In those letters I used the words "guts and inspiration." 
    Whenever something is perceived as a challenge, guts and inspiration follow.  But first it has to be perceived as a challenge. 
    But what if it isn't perceived as a challenge?  Or what if some people perceive the challenge as a challenge for other people?  But then what if those "other people" can't perceive the challenge because they are too afraid to admit that there are unknown scientific aspects about child development and life span development that they don't understand and nobody yet understands?  
    What I have just described is a situation in which nobody has guts and inspiration, because people are either too afraid to acknowledge the challenge, or people naively believe that other people are acknowledging the challenge. 
    I wrote about guts and inspiration because I discovered that the real world didn't yet have guts and inspiration. 
    But once people perceive the challenge and accept the challenge, there will be guts, inspiration and a Nobel prize-winning type effort, naturally.  And there will be a bright shining light of new knowledge.  
    But we must celebrate now!  The celebration of wisdom, science and critical thinking takes us to where we are going.  We are poetry in motion, regardless of when and where world headquarters is established. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 2/14/05

LEAD THE WAY TO A CIVILIZED WORLD

    Due to recent world disasters involving earthquakes, tsunamis and terrorist acts, we are all familiar with the importance of communities and cities sending in search and rescue parties to search for victims still trapped in collapsed buildings.  It is the civilized thing to do.  And any community which failed to search for trapped victims would be called "uncivilized." 
     As a survivor of child abuse I must make an important analogy pertaining to the above. 
    I discovered that nobody in the world, in any country or community, is searching for the victims of child abuse who have been affected in ways which modern science has yet to understand.  There is no "search and rescue party" to find them and discover why science cannot understand how they have been affected. 
    Of course, science is about progress.  And that means there will always be phenomena in the present which science will not understand until sometime in the future. 
    But science is not about ignorance or neglect.  Science is about challenge and discovery! 
    My definition of "a search and rescue party" begins with my plans to create a nationally televised primetime panel discussion of leading scientists to discuss the question: "The Truth About Researching the Effects of Child Abuse." 
    A civilized world can respond with an international organization similar to the American Cancer Society.  World headquarters can be here in Humboldt County. 
    We can celebrate the beauty of discovery, and we can lead the way to our becoming a more civilized world. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 3/29/05

IT TAKES A VILLAGE TO HEAL CHILD ABUSE

    Anyone who says there are no unknown scientific aspects to child development and lifespan development is not a scientist. 
    Science is about challenge! 
    Take physics for example, anyone who said there are no unknown aspects of the cosmos for physicists to discover would not be a scientist; and anyone who did not support moving forward by researching the unknown aspects (challenges) of the physical universe would not be a cosmologist, either. 
    There are unknown aspects to the effects of child abuse, and many of those aspects are related to the unknown scientific aspects of child development and lifespan development. 
    If anyone wants to support science moving forward, then I suggest they vigorously support the creation of a nationally televised panel discussion of scientists to discuss the challenges that lie ahead in "The Truth About Researching the Effects of Child Abuse." 
    There should be vigorous support in every community because there are enigmatic child abuse victims in every community. 
    And if enigmatic victims knew there was such vigorous support, perhaps they would eventually surface and begin communication with people who really want to get acquainted with them, if they sincerely want to get acquainted with them. 
    This should happen in every community.  And communities can set examples for each other throughout the world. 
    "It takes a village to raise a child."  And it takes "villages" to heal child abuse. 
    But this person is not ready to surface and communicate beyond writing these letters. 
    First I need support and sincerity. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 6/6/05

DON'T FORGET THE VICTIMS

     There is no rule in God's universe that says anyone has to get acquainted with enigmatic victims of child abuse.  I am referring to victims who have needs and problems which scientists don't presently understand, but someday they will understand, clearly. 
    There is no rule that says anyone has to get acquainted with us. 
    However, I don't believe that it is possible in God's universe for anyone to get acquainted with children and the world of children without also getting acquainted with child abuse victims.  And I don't believe it is right for anyone to talk about child abuse victims without getting acquainted with enigmatic victims and survivors. 
    There are actually people in this world who think they can know children and the world of children without ever knowing the world of child abuse and child abuse victims and survivors. 
    And there are people who think they can know the world of child abuse victims and survivors without ever knowing or getting acquainted with the most enigmatic victims. 
    But those people are naive!  And such naive people are likely to call themselves and think of themselves as "grownups." 
    I pity such people because they don't know both the real world of children and the true world of elders.  They don't know God's universe and Mother Nature.  And they don't really understand the beautiful world of critical thinking and science. 
    I believe this is an important message between worlds. 
    They are the worlds mentioned above. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 9/5/05

WHO DARES TO DEFINE HUMANITY?

    "Whose culture is it anyway?"  That was the question on the cover of the Sunday October 9th Times-Standard. 
    That is an important question for everyone in every culture, and for every generation in every culture.  It is a good question.  But it doesn't just apply to Native Americans and their own past, present and future.
    What about the rest of us? 
    Who are we?  What are our mirrors? 
    Whose mirror is it, anyway? 
    I am reminded of one of the most important books of the 20th century, "The Meaning of Meaning" written by Ogden and Richards (1923).  They discuss semantics and meaning, and they mention the "proper meaning superstition" which is about how words are not absolutes.  Words don't have absolute meaning.  Instead, words have subjective meanings constructed by subjective minds.  And that surely includes words for cultures. 
    What defines a culture are the people who agree to its definition.  And people should definitely have the opportunity to agree or disagree to a culture's definition and sort out the integral parts of the definition for clarity. 
    This even applies to academics.  Take for instance the word "psychology."  There are dozens of schools of thought in psychology.  And they all have different definitions of "human nature."  If they didn't have different definitions of human nature then there would be just one psychology and one science called "psychology." 
    So, whenever we come upon the word "psychology" we should ask: "Whose 'psychology' is it, anyway?" 
    Who dares to define human nature?  

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 12/2/05

CHILDREN REACH FOR TRUE WISDOM

    During the week of September 26th through the 29th PBS televised documentaries on the 1960s, including four hours on Bob Dylan. 
    But the only two important events that stand out for me during that decade was a spectacular comet with a long tail that rose in the darkness before dawn. 
    The other important event was a television show that began by announcing: "You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the inner mind to the outer limits." 
    I was in high school during the mid-sixties, and I was trying to get over months of depression which followed a suicide attempt.  It wasn't until the late 70s that I discovered that my depression and suicide attempt were connected to my repressed childhood of abuse and extreme terror. 
    When I woke up from the repression, my inner mind reawakened to a terrorized child reaching out for something.  And the energy released upon reawakening was so radical and intense that it obliterated and disintegrated my cultural identity as an adult who had once lived through the 1960s. 
    Do scientists know what terrorized children reach out for, like the terrorized Afghanistan girl on the world famous cover of National Geographic magazine? 
    The answer lies outside the outer limits of present scientific knowledge.  But science will inevitably understand it. 
    Science will understand that we reach out for something that is beyond cultures and historical eras. 
    What lies beyond terror is timeless wisdom. 
    Children reach for it! 
    Hope it reaches Earth! 

    Orion Palomar
     Published in the Times-Standard 1/19/06

MANY MYSTERIES TO SOLVE

    "Science loves a mystery."  Those words were highlighted in bold in the January 19th Times-Standard article on Dark Matter. 
    Those words are more important than most people realize, because if anyone really wants to know the heart and soul of science and scientists, one has to know that science loves mysteries and scientists love mysteries. 
    Unfortunately, most people don't love mysteries the way scientists love mysteries.  Some people love mysteries, but they don't realize that real scientists love mysteries, too.  And some sciences that are called "science" don't love mysteries at all! 
    My journey in science began in high school with "The Queen of Science."  Mathematics! 
    The quote is from Gauss, who nearly didn't become a mathematician because his passions were evenly balanced and divided between mathematics and philology, the science of literary linguistics. 
    My journey in science, math and physics was severely interrupted in my early 20s because of enigmatic personal complications.  Years later I began to study the social and psychological "sciences."  I know enough about those sciences now to know that most people in those fields don't love mysteries at all!  They dread mysteries because they dread the likely probability that there is more to human nature than they already know.  Real scientists love challenge, exploration and discovery. 
    And what about religious people?  Do we love mysteries?  I hope so! 
    I hope I live in a world inspired by the mysteries of science and everyday life, including the mysteries of Mother Nature and human nature. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 4/1/06

ARE THEY SCIENTISTS OR JUST LAMEBRAINS? 

    Can you imagine how absurd it would be if someone said they had a plan to land humans on Mars and the entire project would cost only a thousand dollars?  Imagine if someone said they had a plan for eradicating AIDS and creating a vaccine and the whole project would require only a thousand dollars?  Any sane person would look at such people as being lamebrains. 
    Years ago I graduated from my high school as the most honored student in science and mathematics.  My first college math professor said that I was the most brilliant student she ever had.  But then my life became complicated because I started feeling the hidden effects of child abuse which came to haunt me and my mind, my nervous system, my spirit, my soul, my emotions.  I had to drop out of college and uncover the mystery. 
    Unfortunately I had to find out that the vast majority of academics and professionals in the social and psychological sciences are lamebrains when it comes to understanding the effects of child abuse because they seem to think that it is not going to take billions of dollars of research to understand the effects, and that it is not going to take a major fundraising effort to raise such funds (an effort similar to the American Cancer Society effort). 
    Many of the lamebrains think that research funding isn't necessary at all because they think they already understand child development and lifespan development.  
    Mistakenly, they call themselves "scientists!" 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 6/13/06

LAMEBRAINS WON'T UNDERSTAND ABUSE

    When I went back to college I read Thomas Kuhn's world famous book "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions."  He points out, very clearly, the differences between sciences and schools of thought.  That was when I realized that psychology and sociology are not sciences as much as they are schools of thought; and neither discipline was able to understand how child abuse had affected me. 
    In fact, in order to understand how child abuse had affected me I had to research the disciplines of communication theory and verbal and nonverbal meaning acquisition and communication acquisition.  It was those stages of development which had been affected, and which continue to affect me.  And there are still decades of research ahead for science to understand normal meaning acquisition and communication acquisition, plus how those acquisitions are connected with normal emotional acquisition, cultural acquisition, socialization, a sense of self, a sense of community, etc. 
    It is stupid and lame-brained for anyone to think they can understand child development and lifespan development without researching verbal and nonverbal communication acquisition and meaning acquisition. 
    Unfortunately, I had to find out that there are lots of lamebrains in this world.  But that is what the lamebrains don't want society to know, the media to know, and people who read newspapers to know! 
    Well, now you know! 
    It is going to take a scientific revolution (not lamebrains) to understand the effects of child abuse. 
    You know it! 
    Angels know it! 
    All good people should know it. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 8/31/06

UNCOVER THE TRUTH ABOUT YOUTH

    Recently on PBS “NOVA” was the documentary “Mystery of the Megavolcano.”  One of the scientists stated: “Volcanology is a young science and there is still much that we really don’t know.” 
    It is disappointingly unfortunate that social and psychological scientists don’t have the same intelligence to make a similar statement about human nature and what they really don’t know about child development and lifespan development.  All they have are different models constructed from different schools of thought. 
    The philosopher John Stuart Mill once stated: “Human nature is not a machine to be built after a model, and set to exactly do the work prescribed for it, but a tree, which requires to grow and develop itself on all sides, according to the tendency of the inward forces which make it a living thing.” 
    Like many other child abuse victims I was treated as a mere machine by my parents and siblings.  And then I tried to get “help” from people with degrees in the social and psychological sciences, only to be treated as a mere machine again!  Others have been treated similarly, and the media and society needs to know the truth. 
    Science is good, but more research is needed on the inward forces which make human beings human, including communication and an innate sense of the sacred. 
    Here under the tallest and oldest living trees in the world is the right place to headquarter a world research and fundraising organization to uncover the truth about youth and human nature. 

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard  11/17/06

GIVE THE GIFT OF ILLUMINATION
(this letter was written with the intention of it being published before Christmas 2006)
     I am a child abuse victim!  
    Winter and solstice is the time of year I think most about light and the dark.  
    There is illumination related to discovery and knowledge; but there is the darkness of illusion.  
    My parents believed in the illusion that they understood children and life.  I was brutalized because of their illusion.  After years of repression I sought help from people with degrees in the social and psychological “sciences,” only to find out that they were living in illusions, too.  They have the illusion that they understand child development and lifespan development because they mistake schools of thought for science.  
    And then in America, April is designated "Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month," but it fools people into the dark illusion that significant progress is being made, when the truth is that the "system" has failed countless enigmatic victims like myself.  And nobody cares to discover why!  
    But here under the tallest and oldest living trees, we can create a research and fundraising organization, our gift of light and illumination for the children of the past, the present and the future.  People who believe in scientists, and people who believe in angels, can cooperate around the world and help to raise billions of dollars for research.  It will be our gift under the redwood trees, our headquarters for this world organization, our gift to children.  
    We can give the gift of illumination, and we can dispel the darkness of many illusions.  
    Believe it!

    Orion Palomar
    Published in the Times-Standard 1/3/07

REAL WORLD OF CHILD ABUSE
    "In a world..."  What?  What world?  Whose world?      This is a letter about "coming attractions."  No!  Not Hollywood!  
    This letter is about the coming attraction (a preview) of the real world of child abuse victims and survivors according to us victims and survivors, and not according to the way our world is previewed by academics who think they know about our world just because they have been to college and have earned college degrees and think they can preview our world for the media and for the public with their designation of "April, Child Abuse Awareness Month."  You don't speak for us, and nobody in our world of victims and survivors gave you the permission to represent us!  If we had given you permission, we would have gotten together and voted on whether or not you are qualified to know us.   
    Unfortunately, we survivors have not yet formed a democracy! 
    In a world that doesn't have a democracy, and no true representation of truth, we are going to create a world of democracy.
    This letter is a preview of that world; it will be an international World Honor Society for Adult and Adolescent Victims and Survivors of Child Abuse.  We are also going to have a "Survivor's World Declaration of Independence" to declare independence from anybody and everybody who falsely represents us and our needs and problems. 
    We aren't in movies, in newspapers, or on television.    But we are here! 
    We are shining stars! 
    Stay tuned for more information! 
   
Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 4/11/07

REALIZATION OF MENTAL, EMOTIONAL PROBLEMS TAKES MATURITY
    I thoroughly enjoyed reading your excellent series of investigative reporting on the condition of mental health care in Humboldt County and America. 
    I have written letters about the effects of child abuse in northcoast newspapers for over twenty years, and I am patiently getting closer and closer to forming a world honor society for adult and adolescent victims of child abuse, and also a non-profit sister organization to raise millions of dollars of funds to research the mental, emotional and neural effects of child abuse. 
    Unfortunately, I tried to get help, support and understanding from professionals in the mental health professions, but it didn't work for me, and I'm sure it doesn't work for many others who have enigmatic problems which can only be understood in terms of future research rather than past research. 
    It takes a lot of maturity for a person to admit to themselves that they have mental and emotional problems.  And it also takes an incredible maturity and courage to discover and realize that one's needs and problems are beyond the current cutting edges of science and therapy.  Without that level of faith, courage and maturity, enigmatic victims like myself cannot survive mentally or emotionally.  We have no choice!  Modern therapists don't understand how mature we are, nor how serious we are. 
    Science is about challenge, exploration and discovery.  But I have to say that I respect journalists more as scientists than the people who work in the mental health system, because they don't pursue challenge, exploration and discovery as much so as journalists and writers.  The exception are the social and psychological scientists who are at the very cutting edges of research; they respect the complexity and mystery of human nature. 
    Furthermore, I think America itself lacks maturity.  We think we are a religious nation of spiritually mature people.  But we are not spiritually mature enough to treat fellow human beings (the mentally ill) like brothers and sisters. 
    Honor and respect is something that every person needs.  It is a spiritual challenge to directly experience and explore that need, and discover where it takes you. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Eureka Reporter 5/31/07

RESEARCH EFFECTS OF CHILD ABUSE
       In light of the recent news about the $660 Million settlement the Catholic Church made with victims of child abuse, I would like to remind readers that someday the north coast is going to become world headquarters for a world honor society for adult and adolescent survivors of child abuse.  It will also be world headquarters for a sister organization to raise funds to research the effects of child abuse. 
    Each organization will have a religious committee and a science committee.  And people of all religions all over the world are invited to join in helping to raise awareness, and to raise billions of dollars of funds for research.  And the beauty, the goodness and the light of what we will be doing is going to far outshine any and all darkness, ignorance and evil in this world pertaining to child abuse and pertaining to any ignorance of its effects. 
    These organizations are going to take time and patience to create.  Chances are that I am far more patient than anyone who reads my letters.  And I need time to heal. 
    For now I want to say that the primary agreement in the religious committees is that the question "What can a civilized world do for the victims of child abuse?" is a question that comes from the highest place.  All members agree! 
    And once we establish world headquarters then the north coast will evolve into a world spiritual center more significant to humanity than the Vatican. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 7/27/07

PROFESSORS DON'T WANT TO LEARN
    This is the time of year ("back-to-school") when I think most about all of the academics I have met in my life who pretend to value the learning process.  Many of them suffer from a unique form of dissociation.  They want to believe that they value learning, and they become educators because they want to teach.  But they themselves don't want to learn.  They only "learn" for the purpose of becoming educators.  But when it comes to learning new things, they are resistant, and they are not aware of their own resistance.  And that unawareness is why they are actually dissociated.  Part of them values learning; part of them doesn't want to learn.  Or maybe it is just a simple matter of fear; they fear the unknown.  And that is why some academics become researchers while other become teachers at universities. 
    Three to four years ago I wrote several letters in The Lumberjack inviting the students and professors at HSU to learn things about victims of child abuse and how they (we) have been affected by abuse.  I offered to do two presentations.  One was titled "Survivor Myth, Survivor Image, Survivor Reality: Seeking the Truth About Victims and Survivors of Child Abuse" and the other was titled "How I Became a Semantic Wild Child and a Victim Without a Culture."  I provided my e-mail address in the letters.  But not a single student or professor responded. 
    I have to wonder what Dr. Bruce Perry would say about this lack of response from university students and professors who claim to value science and learning.  This past year he published a cutting-edge book with the long title "The Boy Who Was Raised As A Dog, And Other Stories From A Child Psychiatrist's Notebook: What Traumatized Children Can Teach Us About Loss, Love and Healing."  I wouldn't be surprised if he supported my theory of academics suffering from a form of dissociation. 
    Surely, there is a reason why Perry used the words "what traumatized children can teach us" in his subtitle. 
    Every good scientist knows that science is about challenge, exploration and discovery.  But unfortunately, the students and professors at HSU have the belief that there is no challenge, there is no need to explore, and there is nothing new to discover about the effects of child abuse; and there is nothing that child abuse victims can teach them.  So I guess that makes all of you professors and students at HSU smarter than Dr. Perry. 
    I suggest that the students and professors in the social and psychological sciences at HSU write Dr. Perry a letter and tell him that all of you are a lot smarter than he is, even though none of you have done the research that he has done, and even though there is still decades of research that remain in the future; it is research that is totally dependent on communication between survivors of child abuse and scientists who want to listen and learn. 
    Actually, I should thank you students and professors in the social and psychological sciences at HSU for helping me to think of a title for one of my books.  It will be titled "Modern Society's Fatal Assumptions about Care and Child Abuse Victims."  You most likely don't even care to learn what those assumptions are, which is probably why you didn't care to hear the presentations I offered to give at HSU.      Thanks for helping me to gather material for a chapter on the subject of ignorance and apathy. 
    If you are a reader who cares about science and progress, and would like to comment on ignorance, apathy and fatal assumptions, please e-mail me at opalomar@humboldt1.com.  I would really like to find out if there is anybody at HSU who cares about science and progress and who understands science and progress.  I wrote those letters a few years ago because I assumed there were people at HSU who cared about science and progress.  But I was shocked to discover that my assumption was a false assumption. 
    A month from now I will write a letter in The Lumberjack about the e-mail responses I receive, and whether or not my assumption was really a false assumption. 
    I would appreciate it if students share this column with their professors and department chairs.  Show your support for science, research and communication by being part of the process of challenge, exploration and discovery.  Challenge your professors with this article, and discover what happens. 

Orion Palomar
Guest Editorial in Humboldt State University Lumberjack News 9/5/07

INCREDIBLE CHALLENGE
    What can a civilized world do for the victims of child abuse? 
    People in a civilized world can acknowledge the wisdom in that question. 
    People in a civilized world can be empathetic to enigmatic victims who feel that they are not living in a civilized world because their world has not responded yet with care and wisdom to their enigmatic needs and problems. 
    Citizens in a civilized world can intelligently investigate the possible need to build retreat-sanctuaries for adult and adolescent survivors of child abuse. 
    Citizens in a civilized world can be aware of what lies at the cutting edges of research, such as Bruce Perry's book "The Boy Who Was Raised As a Dog; And Other Stories From A Child Psychiatrist's Notebook: What Traumatized Children Can Teach Us About Loss, Love and Healing." 
    People in a civilized world can be mindful of science and how science is about progress, which means that there will always be phenomena in the present that won't be understood about human nature until sometime in the future (which explains why Perry's book was not written 20 years ago, and why 20 years from now Perry and other researchers  will write new books with new information gained through communication with enigmatic survivors like myself). 
    People in a civilized world can be respectful of the incredible challenge it is to have needs and problems that science does not yet comprehend; and respect and honor the enigmatic victims whose minds are burdened with that inconceivable challenge. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 9/6/07

SOCIETY MUST OPEN EYES TO CHILD ABUSE
    This is the time of year when Nobel prizes are being awarded.  And with that in mind I would like to remind readers that over these past few years I have mentioned in letters that it is going to take a Nobel prize-winning type effort to understand the effects of child abuse.  And I believe all civilized people should know. 
    It is going to take a Nobel prize-winning type effort to establish the fact that countless victims of child abuse are struggling with effects that modern science does not yet understand because modern science is not yet advanced enough to understand the dynamics of the mind and the emotions during child development and lifespan development.  And this puts an inconceivable burden on the minds of many victims who are struggling with effects that modern social and psychological scientists are not willing to admit to the public that they don't understand.  Such an admission would threaten their credibility as scientists, therapists, etc.  They would rather have child abuse victims suffer than to have their own egos suffer.  As a result, both child abuse victims and scientific progress suffer, just because of some people's dark egos. 
    There are victims whom I call "the three-times neglected."  They get neglected and abused by their family, and then they get neglected by the health care system and therapists, and then they get neglected by society because society is ignorant. 
    But society cannot stay ignorant forever. 
    Wake up, everybody!  See the light!  

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 11/7/07

WORDS OFTEN DEFINE OUR EXISTENCE
    The Times-Standard editor had the right idea for suggesting that readers write in messages of thanks for Thanksgiving Day. I think of the song "Don't it always seem to show that you don't know what you've got till it's gone...they paved Paradise and put in a parking lot." 
    What if all the welcome mats were gone?  What if the word "welcome" was gone from dictionaries in all languages? 
    What if dictionaries were gone?  We wouldn't be able to look up the word "paradise."  There wouldn't be other words to look up like "male" and "female."  And we wouldn't know that we were in "California." 
    Without dictionaries we would all lose our minds.  But then we wouldn't know that we lost our minds because dictionaries wouldn't be able to tell us that we were "crazy." 
    And just think, without Greek dictionaries we wouldn't even know what "Eureka" means. 
    What about the Sheraton Inn commercials?  What if they were gone?  The commercials showed happy people from all over the world welcoming each other, and voices singing in the background: "We belong, we belong, we belong..."  I'm thankful for those advertisements. 
    As a survivor of child abuse I wish people would think about what it would be like to have your parents tell you that you don't belong in your body and you don't belong in this world.  And this happens while you are trying to learn words and meaning. 
    Blessed be!  We survivors belong to the definition of the word "miracle." 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 12/18/07

VALENTINE'S DAY AND CHILDREN
    It's been ten years since I wrote a letter about having a moment of silence each Valentine's Day to think about the question "What happens to children who aren't really loved?"  And I wrote about how that question was both a scientific question and a spiritual question. 
    I have been writing letters about child abuse in newspapers because people don't know the answer to the question.  The answer is that the question is indeed both a spiritual question and a scientific question, and it is going to take a Nobel prize-winning type effort, and billions of dollars of research funds to answer the question. 
    But most of all it takes an effort that has love and passion behind it: love for children, love for science, passion for discovery, and love for the truth. 
    But love is not a lie, love is not an illusion; and deception and illusions are not a part of love. 
    As a journalist I am dedicated to truth; not fiction and not illusion.  That means that I am going to continue to write about the truth, in newspapers and in books, about how we child abuse survivors have to survive in a world that doesn't know what love is, what passion is, and what empathy is.  If the world had any of those, then people would have done much more for the victims long ago, rather than cling to stupid and harmful illusions. 
    On Valentine's Day I feel shame for this world.  But that can change.   

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 2/15/08

LET GOOD SCIENCE FLOW FORWARD
    Futurist Arthur C. Clarke, author of “2001: A Space Odyssey,” died recently and had the following words inscribed on his tombstone: "Here lies Arthur C. Clarke.  He never grew up and never stopped growing." 
    I have to wonder how many teachers, professors and preachers don't comprehend the meaning of those words.  I especially think of academics and professionals in the social and psychological sciences who have the illusion of being “grown up.”
    Child abuse victims know things about pain and being human that they don't know.  Will the future world be ready to learn and understand more about children, souls, and laws of nature and healing? 
    Clarke once said: "When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right.  When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong."  Four years ago I tried to share that very quote with academics at HSU, but apparently none of them thought it was possible for there to be enigmatic victims of child abuse such as a "semantic wild child" who became a "victim without a culture." 
    I hope the rest of the north coast doesn't feel that way, for the only way I can ever feel properly welcomed is to be welcomed for what I am, and to be understood, accepted and healed for what I am. 
    Remember, science is about challenge, exploration and discovery.   And science is dedicated to discovering the mysteries and laws of nature and healing.  Let good science flow forward. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 4/3/08

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DALAI LAMA
    Happy Birthday Dalai Lama. 
    The other day I went into Moonrise Herbs for a salad.  I saw a little round table with Dalai Lama books on it and an envelope with the words "Happy Birthday Dalai Lama, July 6th." 
    Just a month ago I read my first Dalai Lama book: "The Universe in a Single Atom: The Convergence of Science and Spirituality." 
    I didn't know his birthday was so close to July 4th, the birthday of a nation.  I find it more natural to celebrate people's birthdays than to celebrate nations' birthdays. 
    On this Dalai Lama birthday I would like to make an important announcement to Buddhists and other "pagans." 
    Sometime in the next twenty years the North Coast is going to become world headquarters for two international organizations related to child abuse research.  One is a world honor society for adult and adolescent victims and survivors, and the other is a research and fundraising organization to support good science flowing forward. 
    We will have a religious committee, a science committee and communication committee (journalism and media).  All religious people will be invited as long as they don’t bash other people's religions. 
    We will converge our energies to heal violence, rather than support violence. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 7/17/08

SMALL POTATOES
I recently had the words "Small Potatoes" printed on the front of a t-shirt. 

Those words are the title to one of the chapters of a book I am writing about meaning acquisition and communication during child development and throughout lifespan development (what we learn about meaning and communication never ends). 

And since what I say on the opening page of the chapter “Small Potatoes” is going to be read by people all over the world, I figure that it should be readable to readers of the Times-Standard, and maybe perhaps they can respond with comments on the T-S website.  And Halloween turns out to be the best time of year to share this because Halloween is related to fear, death and culture. 

My father used to call me “little squirt” many times, and my mother would often say “bless your little heart” when I was about three years old.  But that was after I inadvertently terrified them because I was gifted as a child and said things and did things that they didn’t understand.  And those were things that their own cultural background interpreted as being “evil.”  So, they ended up literally trying to beat the “Devil” out of me. 

Considering how some cultures look upon Americans as being “Satanists” I think that my story is relevant and that people should not take for granted how culturally constructed meaning has affected people, communication and world history. 

Fear causes people to condemn and belittle the very objects of their fears. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 10/30/08

WORTH IT
    In the April 9th Times-Standard there was a story about the astrophysicist Martin Rees winning the $1.6 Million Templeton Prize for religion. 
    Rees once stated that "The main aim of science is to take steps toward answering the big questions." 
    As a survivor of mental, emotional and verbal child abuse I have to believe that someday someone, or a group of people, are going to win the Templeton Prize and the Nobel Prize for addressing the question "What does the mind do to heal itself?" 
    Can you imagine a society or culture that never even bothered to think about what the mind does to heal itself and think about the scientific and spiritual significance of that question? 
    I would rather not think about how dark a world that would be.  Instead, I have decided to live in a bright world, rather than a dark world.  And I will be asking people all over the world to make that decision with me when I become founder of a world honor society for adult and adolescent victims and survivors of child abuse. 
    And we will ask all good people throughout the world to help us build an internationally funded university to research what the mind does to heal itself.  And those will be the people who can think in terms of Templeton Prizes and Nobel Prizes, and making the world a saner and more caring place. 
    Naturally it's going to take time; maybe lifetimes. 
    But minds, emotions and lifetimes are worth it. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 7/2/11

ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE
    Can you imagine a new university on the North Coast?  Anything is possible in the minds of creative, enlightened people. 
    The university I have in mind would be funded internationally and would be titled "The International University of Religion, Empathy and Science."  And it would deal with any and all subjects that are related to any two of the topics, or all three topics that make up the title of the university. 
    There would be various schools or colleges located on campus.  For example, there would be a "College of Native Peoples and Cultures," a "College of Eastern Religions," a "College of Western Religions," and there would even be a college and/or club for atheists.  Of course, there will be a "College of Philosophy, Science and Critical Thinking." 
    And when it comes to the social and psychological sciences, the university will view the discipline of communication (which includes semantics and other related topics) as the master discipline of those sciences.  One of the many diverse goals of the university would be to lead the world in research on child development and lifespan development.  We also hope to lead the world in research pertaining to what the mind does to heal itself. 
    Presently I am writing a book about semantic acquisition during child development and throughout lifespan development.  It will be one of the many topics researched at the university. 
    I hope to write about this university someday in my book titled "I Can Think About Meaning, Therefore I Am." 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 9/16/11

MUSIC DOESN'T MAKE A HOME A HOME
    This is an open letter to Madonna and all other musicians, including Grammy winners. 
    Madonna ended her Superbowl halftime show singing the words "feels like home."  I hope that all musicians someday realize that the word "home" has nothing to do with music. 
    I am a child abuse survivor who grew up in a musical family, and I am writing a book titled "I Can Think About Meaning, Therefore I Am" and I know from experience that music doesn't make a home. 
    Music didn't make a home a home when my father played his gypsy violin, and music didn't make a home a home when my mother lip-synced Rosemary Clooney singing "Come on to my house, to my house, I'm a gonna give you everything." 
    Music didn't make a home a home when I lived in a house on Idlewild Way in San Diego and my oldest brother was the leader of a band named the Ramblers and held band practice in our house with a new band member named Frank Zappa. 
    Popularity doesn't make a home, either.  Nor does money. 
    I think of the song "Country Roads" by John Denver: "I hear her voice...the radio reminds me of my home far away." 
    For child abuse victims who were abused in musical families, the radio only reminds us of growing up in an environment where there was music and no love.   
    When musicians read my book, they won't feel like making music and dancing.  They'll feel like crying, instead. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 2/15/12

CHILDREN UNDER THE SUN
(this letter makes a reference to the annular solar eclipse over the North Coast on 5/20/12)

    On May 20th I saw something in newsprint that was just as interesting as what I saw that day up in the sky on the other side of the clouds. 
    It was the words in print: "Creating and Enjoying Welcoming Spaces."  It was a Times-Standard article about children's books at our county library related to creating welcoming spaces for nature and critters outside and around children's homes. 
    However, I couldn't help but think of creating welcoming spaces for children inside their homes.  Can you imagine someone trying to teach a child about creating and enjoying welcoming spaces for nature and critters outside the home if the child was never welcomed and enjoyed inside the home? 
    Not very many people can imagine it.  And the only people who can really talk about it (as difficult as it may be) are the children who have experienced it. 
    And if it weren't for the children and survivors who talk about it, people wouldn't really know about all of the dark things that can happen under the sun. 
    Lots of books have been written about dark things happening to children.  I myself, am in the process of writing such a book titled "I Can Think About Meaning, Therefore I Am." 
    This year a new book was published titled "Childism: Confronting Prejudice Against Children" by Elisabeth Young-Bruehl. 
    People who read her book will be closer to being ready to reading my book about the darkest things that can happen to the children under the sun. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard  6/5/12

ART THAT SHOULD BE IN TEMPLES

    First I saw it on the worldwide web, then in the 7/15 Times-Standard and then I saw it on PBS "History Detectives."  It was the big story of Bob Dylan's electric guitar. 
    So, what's so big and important about Bob Dylan's electric guitar? 
    What's so great about guitars, music and fame? 
    My two older brothers played guitars.  One of them played with Frank Zappa.      I remember being 10 years old when I heard "Johnny B. Goode" on the radio: "He could play the guitar just like a ringin' a bell." 
    But what do grownups know about children ringing bells? 
    I wrote a letter recently (6/5) that mentioned the book "Childism: Confronting Prejudice Against Children."  I was just a dumb little 10 year old who could only ring bells while my two big brothers wanted to be like Johnny B. Goode: "someday you will be a man and you will be the leader of a big old band...your name will be in lights..." 
    I never grew "up" the way they did!   
    And now I have two little bells that I ring every morning.  One I found at Tailwaggers Thrift Shop: it’s a copper bell with the Seattle Space Needle as the handle.  The other is a brass bell I purchased at the Clarke Museum; its handle is made of local giant redwoods. 
    I also have a temple bell, for my "Temple of Survivor Art" for art made by survivors of child abuse. 
    Our art is priceless and should be in temples. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 7/25/12

GRANDMOTHERS OF THE LIGHT

    Thanks to Tim Martin in his My Word column on November 11th for reminding us, especially this time of year, to praise mature women. 
    On Thanksgiving Day I have always been thankful for the mature women that I have either met or read about, including Native American women, Buddhist women, and women who practice the Wiccan religion. 
    I also want to give praise to President Jimmy Carter's wife, Rosalynn Carter, for writing the book on American mental health titled "Within Our Reach: Ending the Mental Health Crisis" which begins with the chapter "Stigma, Prejudice and Discrimination."  And later in the book she mentions cultural differences, and she mentions people in Cambodia and how normal it is for them to talk to their dead ancestors every day. 
    Her comment about the Cambodians also makes me think of the book titled "Grandmothers of the Light: A Medicine Woman's Source Book" written by Native American Paula Gunn Allen. 
    But you don't have to be a Native American to talk to the grandmothers of the light because the grandmothers of the light are way above and beyond cultural differences. 
    I'm thankful that there is somebody "out there" who is above and beyond cultural differences.  And I'm glad that I can talk to them anytime I like. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 11/15/12

SOMETHING BEAUTIFUL, SOMETHING BRIGHT

    I am celebrating the Winter Solstice and the dawning of a new era by creating a new university that will bring a lot of light to this world. 
    The university will be titled The International University of Religion, Empathy and Science and it will have separately funded and separately founded colleges on campus including a College of Eastern Religions, a College of Western Religions, a College of Philosophy, Science and Critical Thinking, a College of Native Peoples and Cultures, and a College of Atheism and Agnosticism. 
    I wrote about this university in a letter to the Times-Standard on September 16, 2011. A copy of the letter can be read at http://pages.suddenlink.net/opalomar/letters.html. 
    We will be searching for the most intelligent people in the world, including the most intelligent philanthropists in the world, to help us build this university here on the North Coast and change the economy of the North Coast forever. 
    I will give out further information only to the people who have the guts and inspiration that it takes to build the most beautiful and intelligent university in the world by creating and maintaining a website that seeks out the most intelligent people in the world. 
    If you have the guts and the inspiration, and want to be part of something beautiful and something bright, then please write me at PO Box 6301, Eureka 95502. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Times-Standard 12/30/12

HOPE, SPRING AND SHOWERS

    I pray and meditate in private.  I especially like to pray and meditate when I'm taking a shower.  And where my prayers and meditations take me, while under a shower, is to a place far beyond city governments, state governments and national governments.  It also takes me beyond cultures and beyond culturally constructed calendars and holidays.
    Of course, there’s no law that says everyone has to pray in showers!  Can you imagine a government that says everyone has to pray when under showers? 
    But I think atheists should give it some thought.  I don't necessarily mean prayer!  I mean being in showers and thinking about deep things like beauty and how beauty transcends all governments and cultures.  And that includes the beauty of science, which studies Mother Nature.   
    I am the founder of the future International University of Religion, Empathy and Science. 
    Think of beautiful indoor showers and outdoor fountains located on an international campus that invites both atheists and religious people to research and apply empathy to every social issue confronting humanity. 
    Famous scientists and billions of religious people around the world will love us.  And millions of international tourists will want to visit the campus of the most intelligent and beautiful university on Earth, because it represents the beauty and intelligence of empathy.   
    Our university will be a hope that springs eternal, and the most refreshing news around. 
    And this hope will inevitably begin anytime, anyplace, anywhere people want to nurture hope.  
    Enlightened people will make it happen. 

Orion Palomar
Sent to Eureka Timss-Standard on 3/17/13.  Sent again about 6 weeks later.  Never published. 

WILDER THAN ROCK 'N' ROLL
This letter was published in the North Coast Journal in response to two articles that Barry Evans wrote about pertaining to the new "Psychiatric Bible" (the DSM V Diagnostical Statistical Manual 5) and appeared under "Brain Busters" in the letters of The Journal on 7/4/13

    I have been psychologically diagnosed by other-worldly beings, and they have diagnosed me as fitting into the WTRNR category.  That means "Wilder Than Rock 'N' Roll."  Treatment and "recovery" are out of the question! 
    I was born wilder than rock 'n' roll.  And my older siblings tried to make me "normal" by listening to rock 'n' roll, but it never worked. 
    I wasn't born normal.  And I never became normal by the time I was 15 years old, when I saw "The Outer Limits" episode "The Galaxy Being" on television in 1963.  I was beyond reach of psychiatrists after that! 
    Someday after I publish my book titled "I Can Think About Meaning, Therefore I Am" I will be adopted by native tribes around the world.  And they will nickname me "Chief Wilder Than Rock 'n' Roll."  And all the natives are going to laugh every time they hear my name.  They'll be laughing at all the people who want to be "normal" and be part of "the civilized world." 
    I hope to form a world honor society for adult and adolescent victims and survivors of child abuse.  Many of us have needs and problems that require future research to understand.  Past and present diagnostical statistical manuals are profoundly limited. 
    When the time is right I’ll invite people to help us create, organize and publicize this world honor society.  Think of Pulitzer prizes, Nobel prizes and Templeton prizes.  And honor, respect and protect what is mysterious and wild in everyone! 

Orion Palomar
The North Coast Journal 7/4/13

SOME THOUGHTS ON BREAKFAST

    When I want breakfast, I'm not interested in anyone's prayer breakfast meeting.  I just get on my bicycle and ride down to The Pantry and order. 
    "I'll have a full stack, please." 
    But I have to be careful when the waitress brings my pancakes because when I ask for jelly they sometimes think I say "chili" instead of "jelly" and they look at me like I'm some kind of wild, crazy person! 
    Of course, we both end up laughing. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Eureka Times-Standard 8/16/13

GRAY MATTER

    I can appreciate computer metaphors for the brain as mentioned by Barry Evans in "Rogue Neurons" (Field Notes, August 8th), but I also value non-computer metaphors, too. 
    I have a special appreciation for computer metaphors because I still experience the effects of PTSD from early childhood abuse.  And I have learned from experience that there is a neural process very similar to the "System Restore" application in Windows operating system. 
    It took me a long, long time for me to understand why I would have relapses.  But when System Restore first came out in Windows XP, I realized that my brain and nervous system needed to go all the way back to my very early childhood and start everything all over again, including verbal and non-verbal communication, meaning acquisition, touching and being touching, hugging and being hugged, etc.  Perhaps in some ways, that system restore process parallels the theory of rogue neurons. 
    But on the other hand, I can also appreciate non-mechanical and non-computer metaphors for the brain such as "the brain as a temple." 
    For some brains, "the brain as a temple" might sound unscientific.  But in other brains, it doesn't sound "unscientific" because inside some brains, traditional and modern science are viewed as sacred. 
    During my healing process (the "system restore") I restored the part of my brain that could think in metaphors, and also the parts of my brain that could construct meaning.  I even restored the part of my brain related to acquisition of a sense of self (as in the book "Self Comes to Mind" by neuroscientist Antonio Damasio). 
    And when I restored the meaning of the word "science," I realized that I never had to see science as something other than sacred. 
    My brain is a sacred place ("temple") to be in. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the North Coast Journal 8/22/13

READER'S PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCES

    When it comes to allegiances (Tim Martin's "Pledge allegiance to a foreign-made flag?  Kids deserve better" Sunday October 27 Times-Standard), my allegiances are revealed by some of the books and magazines that I have on top of my wooden desk. 
    One book is titled "Secret Spaces of Childhood" by Elizabeth Goodenough. 
    I pledge allegiance to secret spaces of childhood. 
    I always have at least the last six or more issues of National Geographic Magazine on my desktop.  I am a member of the National Geographic Society and I pledge allegiance to the spirit of the National Geographic Society, to their flag (for which it stands), and to their gold-frame logo known all over the world. 
    I also have the photo book "Sacred Places of a Lifetime" (too big for my desktop)  published by National Geographic. 
     I pledge alliance to sacred places of a lifetime. 
    Also among my stack of books and magazines on my desk is Carl Sagan's book "The Demon-Haunted World; Science as a Candle in the Dark." 
    I pledge allegiance to all candles in the dark. 
    And I pledge allegiance with all people who have their own private desks with their own personal arrangements of books, magazines, candles and other treasured and magical items on their desktops. 
    I pledge allegiance to everyone who wants to make this world a better place for people of all ages to live in. 

Orion Palomar
Published in the Eureka Times-Standard 11/7/13


please read this link:  A Note (to all brains) about "Lame Brains"
Click this link for more information on the International University of Religion, Empathy and Science