Thursday, June 25, 2009

Don Joseph Goewey - Mystic Cool

Local author Don Joseph Goewey came to Kepler's on June 24, 2009 to discuss his book Mystic Cool: A proven approach to transcend stress, achieve optimal brain function, and maximize your creative intelligence.

Host Bobbi Emel reports:

I approached the reading of Mystic Cool with some skepticism. Being a therapist and having read MANY books on stress management, I was hoping I would not read another book with advice about taking deep breaths and soaking in the tub to manage stress. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) I was surprised and pleased to read a very helpful book that combines neuroscience, cognitive processes, and spirituality to address overcoming the fears and worries that plague most people in western society. Local author Don Goewey has written a very accessible book that not only gives background on the mechanisms of stress but includes concrete, somewhat evocative exercises for the reader that will certainly help to reduce stress and increase feelings of peace and well-being.

Because of the street fair in Menlo Park and the parking problems thereof, I was concerned that we would have a small audience for the author. However, people began to trickle in at about 7:20 and then the group turned into a crowd as the Goewey family poured in from Borrone's next door. Three of Don's four sons were in attendance with their wives and Don's seven grandchildren. Don's wife, consultant and coach Louise Franklin, was also in the audience.

Don is an engaging speaker and gave a great synopsis of his book then took questions from the audience. Both Don and Louise remarked to me afterwards what a lively audience we had with astute, thought-provoking questions. Many of the questions had to do with an "epiphany" that Don describes in his book and also spoke of at the event. This epiphany came from a time when Don was completely overwhelmed with stress and began to sink down into a very dark place of anxiety and hopelessness. Suddenly, he came out of it and felt an incredible sense of peace and bliss. From this epiphany, which he says he can't really explain - "maybe it was biochemistry, maybe it was a miracle" - came his research and work which eventually became Mystic Cool. (The title is his phrase for what others call "being in the zone" or "experiencing bliss.")

Audience members were curious about this epiphany and one woman observed that others such as Eckhart Tolle and Byron Katie had similar events occur with them. Another man wanted to know if "average people" who hadn't had this type of epiphany could come to the same kind of peace that Don experiences. After much discussion about this, Don explained that, although he had experienced his epiphany, he eventually went back to struggling with fear and anxiety and so has to practice what he preaches on a daily basis. And one could tell from the way he spoke that he truly believes and lives the philosophy of Mystic Cool.

This is a terrific book and an easy read that will help many people integrate more peace and less stress in their lives.


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