Interview with Klemen Mihelic, UltraMind ESP System instructor and founder of Humanitarian Foundation H.O.P.E.
Questions prepared by: Peter Petravič, Med.Over.Net
The Ultra Mind system teaches us how to solve problems in a positive and constructive manner, how to make wiser decisions, how to become a better person and thereby fuel positive changes for a better world for the future generations. The system enables us to improve our health, personal relations, business and other aspects of our lives and the lives of our loved ones.
The Jose Silva UltraMind ESP system is a simple, comprehensible and comprehensive system of various mental techniques to achieve more at all levels of a person’s life. Initially, Jose Silva wanted to help his children do better in school. In his early projects, he focused on his children's hyperactivity to enhance their capacities to focus and pay attention longer. The question he explored was the following: can one’s capacity to learn and their IQ score be improved through some kind of mental training? Jose already knew that the mind generates electricity - he had read about experiments that revealed the Alpha rhythm early in this century. And he knew from his work in electronics that the ideal circuit is the one with the least resistance, or impedance, because it makes the greatest use of its electrical energy. Would the brain work more effectively too if its impedance were lowered? And can its impedance be lowered?
Jose began using hypnosis to quiet the minds of his children and he discovered what to many appeared to be a paradox: He found that the brain was more energetic when it was less active. At lower frequencies the brain received and stored more information. The crucial problem was to keep the mind alert at these frequencies, which are associated more with daydreaming and sleep than with practical activity.
Hypnosis permitted the receptivity Jose was looking for, but not the kind of independent thought that leads to reasoning things out so they can be understood. Having a head full of remembered facts is not enough; insight and understanding are necessary, too.
Jose soon abandoned hypnosis and began experimenting with mental training exercises to quiet the brain yet keep it more independently alert than in hypnosis. This, he reasoned, would lead to improved memory combined with understanding and hence to higher I.Q. scores.
The exercises from which Mind Control evolved called for relaxed concentration and creative mental visualization and ways of reaching lower levels. Once reached, these levels proved more effective than Beta in learning. The proof was in his children's sharply improved grades over a three-year period while he continued to improve his techniques.
Jose had now scored a first - a very significant one, which other research, principally biofeedback, has since confirmed. He was the first person to prove that we can learn to function with conscious awareness at the Alpha and Theta frequencies of the brain.
He also learned about the benefits of the relaxed alpha state in terms of reducing stress, strengthening the immune system and speeding up the healing process. Gradually, new techniques were born to improve all other aspects of our lives – in overcoming difficulties in our everyday lives, in making business decisions, in interacting with other people, in art, music, learning, and in sports … Do you remember how Rok Petrovič, the famous Yugoslav skier, used to close his eyes before the race to visualise the slope? This technique once raised quite a few eyebrows, whereas today it has been adopted to a certain extent by most athletes. In a way, visualisation at the alpha level helps program the mind to succeed.
The system teaches how to connect to the “Higher Intelligence” to receive guidance and help others, which will also help us. Take business for example: it is not about getting rid of your boss and taking over his job, but about how to help your boss and benefiting from that. The system thus teaches you how to give unconditionally to get something in return.
Correct me if I am wrong, but here is my understanding of what was said above: one needs to learn how to help others to be able to help oneself, or, in other words: help others to help yourself. If I got it right, it is about killing two birds with one stone: if I help someone else, my ego will benefit from that as well. Ergo: a win-win situation. It sounds very simple. Is that it?
Your question reflects just how wrong the track is that humanity is on today. It amazes me time and time again how people always put their personal interests first. They always calculate the gains they will get from helping others. You wonder whether such a simple thought can help individuals? Yes, of course it can. This is what makes us human. We are not animals, but sort of masters of the Earth; we have the power and the capability to make this world a better place. Unlike animals, we have a spiritual and emotional side to us; we can understand and show empathy.
Currently, miners are being rescued in Chile who are being stranded at 700 metres under ground. Experts from all over the world keep telling them that they can only make it if they keep a positive attitude and help each other. Of course, the experts are right. We can probably all agree with them; now, we only need to realise that entire mankind is trapped in a similar mine as well. Other people’s problems are our problems as well, and we need to make a collective effort to survive on the long run. Can you imagine a miner calculate how to benefit from his colleagues’ misery? Of course not – he knows his survival depends on that of the entire team. The same should apply for all of us: we shouldn’t just think about our personal gains, but should rather join forces to guarantee the survival of our and all future generations. We should treat all people as our parents, our brothers and sisters. All children are our children. That is the trick, and that is what makes us human. We need to justify our superiority over all else on Earth.
In the words of Jose Silva: by helping humanity, you are also helping yourself, as you, too, are part of mankind. This view of life should encourage us to help every being to be creative, successful and happy. But it is important to perceive things this way if one only uses the left – objective – hemisphere of the brain at the beta level. At this physical beta level, it appears that if someone else gets something, then you cannot have it. But when you reach that higher alpha level, you realise that the more you give, the more you get. Giving is what is rewarding, not just taking. But this is not something one can learn rationally, but has to experience it. To communicate with the “higher intelligence”, you need to engage your right – intuitive – half of the brain.
Bear in mind that “Higher Intelligence” can imply anyone who has information that you can use to resolve problems and improve conditions, be it God or any other concept of higher power. Jose Silva saw this higher intelligence, this invisible support, as the cosmic intelligence. Jung, for example, called this intelligence collective sub-conscience.
We have managed to accomplish so much in the past in terms of physical dimension, by only using the left half of the brain. We have conquered Earth, air, sea and even space. But look where that has brought us. In a way, we have everything, but at the same time, we have nothing. We are becoming more and more miserable. We are shutting in, striving for material things, always wanting more. Parents are too busy to spend time with their children; in schools, children are taught to be individualists on a quest for their own success. They are not encouraged to resolve problems together and to help each other, even though they could achieve so much more together. Even at a very early age, there is a gap between them in terms of what they have and own. We make them long for things, instead of raising them to be real people. And then we are shocked when these same children grow up to be materialistic people who send their own parents to nursing homes to get their hands on their belongings. That is not the answer, but a detriment to humanity.
If humanity wants to develop any further, we will have to start using our right brain hemisphere and appreciate the subjective dimension. In the UltraMind seminars, we wish to enable people to start using both hemispheres of their brain to the same extent. We need to learn how to enter to the alpha level of brain waves, where the right – intuitive – half of the brain comes into play, and allows us to take control over the process of change. It is about consciously trying to reach a deeper level of mind; transforming sub-conscience into inner conscious awareness.
In the words of Jose Silva: The more people you serve, the more service you provide, the more problems you solve, the more rewards you will receive.
Many have gone in the opposite direction, with more or less success: first, they want to get something for themselves, and only then are they willing to help others. Alas, you cannot expect guidance and support of the Higher Intelligence if you have chosen that path. Higher Inelligence will not going to help you. You are on your own. If you make a mistake, you are going to suffer for it, you are on your own. You don’t get help from the other side. “You only get help from the other side when your intentions are that whatever you are doing is to help improve conditions on the planet for more than yourself, not just yourself. “If you only consider Me, me, you have to do it on your own. If it is for Us, then you get help, if whatever you do is going to help more than you. “The more you are going to help, the more help you get for it.
“We always say, "Don’t ever ask for more than what you need, but do ask for no less than what you need."
If I got the gist of it right, my question is this: this strategy leads to a win-win situation as everyone helps everyone else to help him or herself. It sounds to me as a magic wand, which will bring happiness to each and every one of us. You know that people are usually sceptic about happy endings. What you are saying sound almost too good to be true. And yet you are saying it is possible.
We were all given this magic wand at birth anyway; it is just that some people have a natural skill to use it, and others have to learn this skill. Or rather – learn again what we could already do as children, but then lost it as our parents, our schools, our society and the collective rationale only encouraged us to use the left half of the brain. People who live as one with nature perceive this as completely natural. Take the Aborigines for example – they are highly intuitive. If a member of their tribe is hurt somewhere in the desert, the others will find him without a GPS device or a mobile phone. They are able to communicate using telepathy, which is just as inconcievable for us as mobile phones or GPS devices are for them.
But there is nothing surreal or magical about it; it is just a simple and very efficient method to use the human brain. Learn to program your mind to become a creative and constructive tool in your effort to reach your goals. But Jose Silva pointed out repeatedly that we should not practice just for what we will get out of it; we should correct problems because that’s what we were sent here to do. If you give to get something, you’re not giving – you’re trading. It is not a matter of setting goals and trying to better ourselves; the correct attitude is to find out what we were sent here to do, and then do it.
If you need a million dollars, Mr. Silva said, it is easy to get it: Just give 10 million dollars worth of service to humanity, and if you need a million dollars, you’ll get it. If you want to do great things, you must have a lot of money to do it with. If you have little things to do in life, you don’t need much money to do whatever that is. So it depends on your needs, on what plans you have for the future. That determines what you are going to need to accomplish your goals. Humans have a special obligation.
Now your goals should be – not just benefits for you and yours – animals do that. We want to also help other human beings. We don’t mean just me and my family, we mean humanity in general. All human beings. You see, animals take care of themselves and their offspring, but animals don’t help other animals of the same species. That’s animal reaction. This is the way that humans are acting right now. They don’t care about anybody else. But we should care about other human beings also. We cannot survive by ourselves.
We need shops to manufacture shoes for us because we don’t manufacture shoes, clothing because we don’t manufacture clothing, someone to change the oil in my auto. I pay them for the services. We need each other. It is not just about me getting whatever I want, and then forget about everybody else. All of our plans should be considered as we, or us; meaning: Humanity is not just me and my immediate family. Animals do that automatically; they don’t even have to have intelligence to supply their needs and the needs of their immediate family.
We want to go beyond that. Not just what animals are capable of doing; we want to be able to do what humans are capable of doing with the intelligence that we have, way beyond what animals are capable of doing. Our obligation is to continue improving living conditions on planet earth. Period. That comes first. Everything else is secondary.
Now that you understand your mission, you are on the right track. Now you can ask for help and get it, for that only: To improve conditions on planet earth. Notf or anything else.
Higher intelligence is going to help you only when your intentions are to improve living conditions. Then ask for help, and you are going to get it immediately. Once you understand this, then you are on the right track. It is about what your intentions are:
You are walking down the street tomorrow and see a board with a nail sticking out. Ninety-nine percent of the people walking by just kick it and say, “Somebody’s going to get hurt with that. Let them take care of it, what the heck do I care about it.” Yes, you should care. You should pick it up, get the nail out of the way before somebody gets hurt. Once you are aware of this, you should pick it up and put it aside before somebody gets hurt. This is how we are supposed to be functioning on this planet, and we’re not. We don’t care for one another. This “love one another” means “help one another.” That’s what it meant. You help me and I’ll help you. Everybody helps each other, that would be great. We have a saying: At alpha we should pray for one another. At beta we prey on one another. We want to gain helping others gain, not gain at somebody else’s loss.
When you understand this, and function in this manner, life gets easier. You are a different person. You don’t know why, but things start coming your way. Actually, you attract them from your center, from alpha. Or you move in the direction you should go, to be luckier, they say. You are luckier, happier, more satisfied with life, and so on. It is a different way to be, a different world for you now, because you function from your center, using both brain hemispheres. You are a different person.
A few years ago, you said that over 15 million people from over 100 countries around the world are using these techniques. I am sure that today, these figures have increased. You know that people hold on to what is good. At the time, you also said that these techniques are employed among doctors, managers, lawyers, athletes etc.; you listed them in that exact order. Was it completely random or are these techniques really more suitable for certain professions, and are therefore more popular and recognised among certain professionals than among others?
I do not know the exact figures, but I am also convinced they have increased. Many very different people took part in the seminars and scientific researches since 1966, when Jose Silva started his work. The basic Silva method evolved in many different directions. Dr Carl Simonton developed the so-called Simonton method to help patients with cancer, in combination with official medicine. Burt Goldman used oriental approaches and developed the Goldman method. Shakti Gawain was interested in creative visualisation. Paul Scheele used certain aspects of the Silva method in photoreading. And the list goes on and on. In addition to that, Jose Silva joined forces with scientists and instructors to develop methods for managers, salesmen, athletes etc. Then in 1999, just before he died at the age of 84, he presented the UltraMind ESP system to the world. That was the highlight of his scientific research career – a system that can help improve all aspects of one’s life. We could call it ESP for everyday life. In his scientific research, Jose developed a system to the benefit of all, regardless of their age, gender, education, religious belief etc.
Not all people are the same – some like this and others like that. Some read books, others prefer attending seminars. Some appreciate traditional methods, whereas others are more into exploring alternatives. Every person can find what suits his or her taste best. My next question might sound a bit silly after what you just said, but still: are Jose Silva’s techniques good for everyone? Are they based on any common principles we can all relate to? Is there anything that can make it harder or even impossible for someone to adopt these techniques?
Generally, anyone can over the age of 10 can learn these techniques if they are willing to learn. At about ten years, one's mind reaches a level where it is able to understand and learn the techniques. In fact, these techniques are easier to learn than they are to explain.
You also do not need to have any prior knowledge to learn these techniques. There is nothing wrong if you do have it, however; combined with the techniques, any additional knowledge can bring you even more success. Whatever works for you is fine, and it makes sense for you to stick to it. If it does not work, it is wiser to go back to the basic techniques, which have been proven to work for all.
There always have been and always will be people who will try to test the how far they can go in exploiting the system to their advantage. Is the system protected against any such intentions, or can the effects at least be mitigated?
I guess we are limited by how far our mind can go, and to some extent, nature itself also limits us with its laws, which stand regardless of our decision to believe or not to believe in them. For example, it does not matter whether or not you believe in the law of gravity. When you jump off a building, the result will be the same. Nature punishes us. The same applies for the spiritual dimension. Nonetheless, people still like to push the limits, because we believe we can get away unpunished if we do not get caught – like with speeding. Alas, or luckily for that matter, it is not true; we are bound to be punished for our reckless behaviour sooner or later.
Jose Silva also believed that if people used his ESP techniques selfishly, they would lose their ability to communicate subjectively, and their telepathy skills would vanish. The system is based on real-life situations, and experience show that people can only act in a positive and constructive manner at the mental level. The spiritual dimension works on the principle of attraction. In the spiritual dimension, you attract what you dwell on. Whatever you create in the spiritual dimension can help to attract the physical dimension back into harmony with nature, back the way it is supposed to be.
To break anything or cause harm in the physical dimension, you need to use force. It takes force to break a leg. Then the leg tries to grow back together again, the way nature intended. You can use your mind to help the leg heal, by attraction. But the mind is not physical; it cannot force; it cannot harm. The spiritual dimension is a creative dimension. You can create. You cannot destroy. Of course, if you dwell you negative thoughts, if you fear that bad things are going to happen to you, then your own brain can create for you, what you dwell on. But nobody else, mentally at a distance, can do anything to harm you. If you have any kind of physical contact with a person, you can harm them physically. This can be by touching them, by saying something cruel, and even
by using your aura radiation if you are within aura range. The aura extends about eight meters from your body, so if you are that close, then there is an exchange of energy from the physical part of the aura.
At a distance, this does not apply. Any harm that comes to you, is because you create it yourself, not because somebody else “projects” it to you.
Whatever you create in the spiritual dimension can only help to correct problems, to attract physics back to the way that nature intended. Your creation can not cause harm in the physical dimension.
We often say that everything happens for a reason. That a particular event was bound to happen at a particular moment. That there is no such thing as a coincidence. I kind of complicated things a little, but my real question is: what were the circumstances that led you to explore these techniques and what brought you to promote them now in seminars that you organise and lead yourself?
I discovered Jose Silva’s techniques in a very difficult period of my life, when both my mother and father were diagnosed with cancer at the same time. I wanted to help them, and I looked into various methods of treatment. I attended numerous seminars to find something that my mind could grasp and that promised at least some results. With Dennis William Hauck as my mentor, I became Reiki master, and I realised that there really was some invisible energy which I had never known before and which also works long-distance. I reached level one of the Domančič method with Zdenko Domančič, and it was really mind-blowing. Even today, when I am much more familiar with the topic, I am amazed about what I saw. Along the way, I read tons of literature on diet, treatment, alternative and other treatments, the impact of the mind on the body etc. I studied numerous home courses, like Quantum Touch Healing, EFT, Sedona.
Sadly, my father died during this time. My mother, however, is healthy, and I am convinced that conventional medical treatment was not the sole factor; so-called alternative or complementary techniques had a major impact as well.
But I only came across the Silva method “by chance”, and then I attended several seminars. I was amazed with the results – as if someone had given me a magic wand. Finally, and once again by chance, I also came across UltraMind, which was precisely what I had been looking for all along. Once I really understood the system, I wanted to share it with others. I met Ed Bernd jr., who worked alongside Jose Silva for many years; he was the author of several bestsellers and audio courses, and one of the best instructors of the Silva method and UltraMind ESP system. Ed helped me become an UltraMind ESP System Instructor in Slovenia. He also became my good friend and colleague. Jose’s oldest son, Jose Silva jr., and other instructors have also been very helpful in providing advice and sharing their experiences with me.
We tend to say that every important event in our life is valuable from a certain point of view; well, it is not just the event itself, but rather the lesson we learn from it. How do you perceive the world today based on the techniques which, presumably, you adhere to in your everyday life?
The system enabled me to be more successful in various areas. I have also noticed that today, a larger share of my decisions is correct. I try to do better, though admittedly, I still make many mistakes. Some of them I even make consciously, but to a much lesser extent than in the past. Nobody becomes a superman, who is on hundred percent flawless. Even the best among us make mistakes. We are all just human, with our good and bad qualities and with our problems to overcome. I always point that out in the seminars, so that people don’t think that the techniques do not work just because I failed to achieve something. Many people’s eyesight improved because they successfully adhered to the techniques, while I still need glasses. The system has been proven to work, it is just that I never found enough willpower to try and “fix” my eyes. People are also wrong to expect the problem to miraculously disappear. What is important is solving the problem. But that does not necessarily mean I have to get rid of glasses at any cost. Indeed, glasses are part of the solution for me, as I can see well with glasses.
What I appreciate the most about the system is that I can now see the world as something positive, and that I no longer believe in good and evil. In a way, everything is good, it is just that we often cannot see it. A friend of mine, a humanitarian coordinator in Darfur, Suleiman Jamous, once told me about the time he was detained in a prison for no apparent reason. The Sudanese government simply could not allow such an intelligent and wise man walking around free, so they decided to hold him imprisoned for quite some time. Several organisations and lawyers tried to free him. Mia Farrow wanted to trade places with him and go to prison, because she knew Suleiman could help victims among the civilian population a lot more than she ever could. During a visit to Suleiman in prison, his lawyer was apologising about the fact that he could not get him out of prison yet. Suleiman turned to him calmly and said that things were probably just as they should be, and that it was better for him; had he been free, he could have got killed in the war anyway. Being in prison, he could read a lot and improve his English, which turned out to be very useful to him. This shows that every cloud has a silver lining, and that it is important to be positive in the face of every event. There is always a lesson to learn.
Jose Silva once said: “Don’t forget that we have been endowed with mental capacity to discover why we were sent here and how to fulfil our mission." Can this thought also be connected with human potentials or talents? They say we all have at least one talent, which we can use in the course of life or not. Some people use their talents wisely, some are less successful, and some probably do not even know what their talents are and how they could use them. Why do you think some people do not use their full potential?
Decades ago, Napoleon Hill studied 500 most successful individuals of that tie to find out what separated successful people from average human beings. Some of them included Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell, Henry Ford, Elmer Gates, Theodore Roosevelt …, and they spoke about their experiences with an invisible guide or some internal voice they believed was guiding them.
Jose Silva went even further in his scientific research, and he was the Jose Silva was the first person to use the electroencephalograph – the EEG – to actually look inside the heads of people and determine what separates the super successful from the ordinary. He found that the super successful people do their thinking – get information and make decisions – at their center, the alpha brain wave level. He would ask people questions while he had them connected to the EEG, and he noticed that most people would remain in beta when they answered. But a few – about ten percent – would dip into alpha, then they’d come back to beta and answer the questions. Mr. Silva’s scientific research went way beyond that. He discovered that the people who experience the most success in all areas of life – not just financial, but health, relationships, happiness, a sense of satisfaction, and so on – had a different attitude. It wasn’t just confidence, or “expectation.” It was a sense of purpose, a determination to improve conditions for humanity. Silva concluded: “We have been equipped with bodies suitable for the physical dimension, and have been sent here to accomplish certain objectives. I believe that each one of us has been given all of the tools, talent, and training that we need to accomplish the mission we were sent here to do. People who select their own goals, and then fail, disregarded the mission that was given to them. If they had used the abilities they were given for the mission that was assigned to them, they would succeed.
Some people say that we have been given everything we need to succeed at anything we want to do. My research indicates otherwise: That we have been given everything we need to succeed at the mission that has been assigned to us, the mission that we were sent here to do.”
Helping others is a nice and noble deed, but that does not necessarily mean it will be accepted as such. Many people do not accept help because they feel they do not need it. At the end of the day, each person is the master of his life, so what gives others the right to interfere with it? Despite our best efforts, the defence mechanism on the other side can be very strong. How can one learn not to take such negative reactions personally when offering help? How can we protect ourselves from feeling hurt because of the rejection?
If someone does not want help, then don’t help them. You cannot impose your will on anyone. You can never be sure you are actually right. You can be wrong, and that can cause even more damage. How would you feel if the saleswoman at a department store picked out an outfit for you because she felt it would fit you? You would refuse to take it, because you and you alone know what you want. If, on the other hand, she kindly advised you to consider this and this outfit, you might decide to take her advice. The same applies to helping others.
Nonetheless, there is nothing wrong in trying to influence a person from our subjective dimension to change his mind and accept help in addition to doing what he can to help himself. There is nothing wrong with that – it is basically similar to praying for him. In the subjective dimension, one cannot harm – you can only help. And you should do whatever you can to help solve a problem if there is one.
Help is by no means only limited to material help. There are many ways to help. Sometimes, it is enough just to listen to someone, or to smile, or to use our own experiences and knowledge to help another human being. You need to just look around you to do that. There are always options to consider.
It is hard for people to imagine something we do not know, and despite our best intentions and efforts, it all boils down to the impression we get about things. Could you describe the seminar we mentioned earlier into more detail?
The seminar consists of several deepening (relaxation) exercises. Through these exercises, participants first learn the technique to enter the alpha state. To reach this alpha state, participants sit on a chair with their eyes shut (which is necessary to enter the alpha state) and follow the instructions. It is a bit harder at first because they have to learn to stay awake in the alpha state which people normally enter while sleeping, but by the second exercise, most participants already submerge into the alpha state. Later, new techniques are added to these exercises, and the instructor will explain with a concrete example why any particular technique is used. Very often, participants themselves can provide such concrete experiences – particularly those participants who already attended seminars sometime in the past, which is very valuable, as people tend to learn most from real-life situations. All in all, the system itself was developed during an effort to solve problems of people in real-life situations. We back the entire process with an explanation of Jose’s scientific research work and findings, which helps us to explain very clearly what the point is behind each individual technique. Discussions and questions provide a good opportunity for everyone to learn how to apply the techniques in whatever area of life. Much of our attention is also devoted to motivation, positive thinking, creativity, laws of mind programming, the link between the mind and the body etc.
After lunch on the second day, we apply what we learn to practical examples. Participants first have a go in psychometry, i.e. acquiring information from objects, and later in mental projection, which allows a person to pick up information from a distance. It is a sort of confirmation that the techniques actually work. Every participant has the opportunity to test the system by using their own mind.
Two feelings emerge when reading about such techniques: scepticism and fascination. Fascination over something unknown, something which – despite a myriad of movies and books dedicated to supernatural and paranormal, to use those words – still seems quite unusual. What we do not know scares us, but also fascinates and attracts us at the same time. Very often, these feelings are also accompanied by scepticism, which affects how we understand, perceive and feel about things and about ourselves. What was the reproach you heard most often? And why do you think people criticised those particular aspects the most?
I guess bending spoons and forks can be considered paranormal. At a symposium one day, Jose Silva met Uri Geller, who demonstrated how he bent cutlery. Silva told him: “When you learn how to fix a bent spoon, you will be creative, and you will solve a problem. What you are doing now is nothing but creating new problems.” There is nothing supernatural or paranormal about the UltraMind system. It only teaches us to use our natural skills to revert an abnormal situation back to normal. I do not see anything supernatural about learning how to overcome a headache without pills or how to overcome the fear of height, about quitting smoking, finding the right partner or leading a successful career life?
The reproach I hear most often comes from my wife, who thinks I work too much. She is probably right.
The seminars last for two days. What is the atmosphere in these seminars? How do relations evolve in these two days – spending time together for two days probably has some impact? What do the participants expect, what do they struggle with the most and what is their favourite part of the seminar? Do people who meet at these seminars become friends, do they fall in love? What do participants expect from the seminars?
I organise these seminars to allow people to learn and to successfully apply the techniques. Thus, we always bear in mind the participants’ wishes and needs. Our approach to teaching is fairly liberal. We let the participants decide on the number and duration of breaks, as these breaks are a perfect opportunity for pleasant debates, which help people to understand the system better and to get to know each other. The participants get a chance to talk about their experiences and any other topics. That has a positive effect, and it helps participants to relax more. They can also explore dozens of books and home classes related to the Silva method and UltraMind system.
Friendships have definitely been born at the seminars; as for romances, I do not know of any (yet). Participants say we usually exceed their expectations, but it is important to note that success depends on practical application of the acquired knowledge. It does not require much time – usually, it only takes a few minutes a day to achieve changes. But nothing comes from nothing – it is important to use the magic wand.
The seminar is split into two parts: beginners’ and advanced. Do people who attend the beginners' seminar normally then attend the advanced seminar as well, or does that only happen rarely?
At first, Jose needed months to teach people about the techniques. In 1966, when he started teaching the Silva method (back then it was called Mind Control), he split the seminars into two weekends. The first weekend, participants performed self-help exercises, and the second weekend was devoted to the ESP techniques.
On the other hand, UltraMind ESP system is a comprehensive programme that Jose Silva presented in 1999, and which lasts for two days. Initially, the Silva method entailed several techniques for various purposes, which are now combined into more advanced techniques under the UltraMind system. There are no new concepts, it is just that people have changed with time. In the past, ESP was a taboo and no one believed it worked, so Jose Silva tried to attract people by teaching simple self-help techniques. Then, once people already realised the power of their mind, he could carry on with the “real” ESP techniques during the second part of the seminar.
Many people come back and attend the seminar for a second time. Perhaps they focused on just one particular problem the first time around, and decide they want to focus on other aspects as well the second time. Some may "miss" something the first time, and some say they just come back for an energy boost or motivation. Besides, the content of each individual seminar also depends on the participants; we go beyond the outlined programme to meet the needs of the participants’, which means that each seminar is different than the one before. So, one seminar might be more focused on business, the next one to health problems, and the next one to learning or to relations with others.
I presume men and women from different age groups participate in the seminars, right? Every participant is unique when it comes to experiences and lessons learned in life and in terms of personal characteristics. Teaching is a two-way process, an interaction between the instructors and the participants. Of course, you enrich your participants at the seminars, but I am sure they give something back as well.
Of course, learning is a life-long process, and I always learn so much at the seminars. Techniques are one part of the story; knowledge, wisdom and experiences are another. Some participants have prior knowledge they acquired on their own, and they are willing to share it with others. Besides, I have to admit that many newcomers master the techniques much more than I do after just two days. Even I am sometimes amazed by what the human mind is able to achieve. That is a sign we are on the right track.
As we grow older, we experience life and become wiser. This may lead us to think that as time passes by, there is nothing more that life can throw at us, and that we have seen it all. Is there anything in your everyday work that still takes you aback, that fascinates you – do you ever catch yourself thinking: "And yet I thought I have seen it all."? That is how many people react to surprises.
Huh, ask me that in about 35 years. I am far from seeing everything that life has prepared for me. Perhaps I am a bit more prepared for those surprises, but I still do get taken aback, and I hope to see many more of nice surprises.
Do you think people who attend the seminars are willing to share what they have learned with others who never attend them, or do they keep it to themselves?
I am sure people share the lessons with others, and I can tell that by the fact that many people come back to the seminar, and they bring their partners, relatives or friends along. After all, that is the point of the seminar – help yourselves and your loved ones, and also help others.
You organise these two-day seminars every few months. The money from the seminars is often entirely donated to Darfur. You are the founder of the H.O.P.E. humanitarian foundation, which helps collect funds for humanitarian aid to people in Darfur, especially women and children. You and Tomo Križnar are working relentlessly side by side to promote this project. Some people work alongside us in various projects for a long time, while others come and go, and when they leave, someone else will come. Do you still remember how you first met Tomo Križnar? When and where did your paths cross?
At first, we donated the money from the seminars for charity in Slovenia, especially to children in need. For several years, our company in Slovenia has been donating money to Santa Claus bringing presents to children who were put into foster care because their parents could not provide for them. Sometimes, things don't change much for them with foster families either, and our presents are all these children get. We give them clothes, school supplies and toys, and we also organise a small party for them with the “real” Santa. Only the social workers know who brought the gifts. We prefer to stay anonymous, and we do not expect any gratitude or publicity in return. The joy in the children’s eyes is the greatest reward. We also help individuals or join campaigns to collect funds for safe houses and maternity homes. Additional activities are currently under way to help socially-impaired children in Slovenia. Last year, another company joined us to provide financial support, and I hope we will be able to do even more together.
I met Tomo Križnar and Suleiman Jamous in Maribor two years ago, and it was more or less by chance. As we talked, I could appreciate the all that they were doing for Darfur, and I offered to help. It was impossible to ignore what people in Darfur were going through. Jose Silva’s techniques and some brainstorming were at the origin of our ides to use mini cameras to protect women and children in Darfur from violence. Our friends and participants in our seminars all joined in and we bought mini cameras, HD cameras, cameras, laptops, memory cards and removable hard drives, and Tomo and I took them to Darfur last December. We distributed them among women at refugee camps and to humanitarian teams led by Suleiman Jamous, and they made sure other refugee camps in Darfur got some of the equipment as well. The results were better than anyone dreamed of. In one Saturday edition (Sobotna priloga) of the Slovene newspaper Delo, Suleiman said: There are 20,000 troops on a joint mission of the United Nations and the African Union in Darfur, but they are not doing anything for the people of Darfur. The international community is just wasting money there. A single mini camera has done more good for the local population than all the peace workers combined in deterring murderers and rapists from crime, as they fear they would get caught on camera.
The H.O.P.E. humanitarian foundation was established after my visit to Darfur. Seeing and meeting all those innocent people in their daily struggle for survival, seeing women who do wonders to extend their lives and the lives and their and a bunch of other people's children, for all children orphans living without a roof over their head, and all the skinny rebel soldiers who fight and die to protect their loved ones – all that really changed my life. I saw how hard it was for them to make it through the day, and I could only try to imagine how they feel thinking of those they once knew and loved, but were unfortunately gone ... But I cannot even begin to imagine how hard it must be to live somewhere under a constant threat, fearing for your own life and the lives of your children in the face of the brutalities committed by the Djandjaweed – the “devils on horses”.
I cannot sleep at night when I remember those terrified children, wondering what they did to deserve this. Some say that Tomo is crazy to risk his life to help those facing danger. They say he should be helping people in Slovenia rather than somewhere in Africa. But when I saw the suffering of the innocent children in Darfur, I could understand him completely. If you ever saw with your own eyes what genocide is, I bet you would do exactly what Tomo Križnar is doing. Just reading about the crises around the world or hearing about them on the news makes it easier to just dismiss it as yet another sad story. In a way, people thrive on blood and other people's misery. We enjoy violent movies that feature human suffering and death. We buy popcorn and take pleasure in violence featured in cinema. But seeing actual atrocities of the modern world is too much for us to handle – it is easier to just look the other way and pretend they do not exist. As if it is not our problem. It does not occur to us that one day it might be us who will need help. That it might be our children suffering. We have become immune and careless when it comes to other people’s problems.
In our effort to do for the children of Darfur something similar to what we are doing for Slovenian children, we decided to call out to those who could lend a hand. Taking into account what we had previously learned about fund-raising, we established the H.O.P.E. humanitarian foundation in a way that would guarantee transparency for the donors and the recipients. All the funds we raise go entirely to those who need them the most. Nobody is getting paid for what we are doing, and the founders try to donate as much as we can as well. All the donations are published on our website pursuant to the relevant laws on personal data protection. The donors can choose a particular cause they wish to support, and they can monitor what is going in that field on via the Internet. When any given mission is concluded, we shall publish a full report on the funds raised and the purchases made, and then we will record on film how the goods are handed over to the beneficiaries and what the benefits of the campaign are for them, so that donors can see who they helped and in what way. We guarantee the donors that all funds raised will be used entirely for the campaign they decided to support. If for some reason we should fail, they will be fully reimbursed.
Every time a campaign is presented to help Darfur, it seems to me that Tomo Križnar is the man we all think of in this context, whereas you are overshadowed by him. It is true that your name always comes up, but you seem to prefer staying "backstage", as if you don't like the publicity. Is it just a well-planned business strategy or is it a reflection of your characters?
What people should think about when they hear of Darfur are the people who are suffering there. People should realise that atrocities are going on there even as we speak. Tomo is one of the few who has not given up hope that the world will stop the genocide in Darfur. It is not about associations. What is important is that he is carrying a horrific burden after seeing how people live in Darfur. Can you imagine seeing mutilated, dying and dead women and children? I bet you would not even think about your public appearance if you did, just like Tomo and I don’t. Our business strategy is the last thing on our minds. If you are the least bit human, you would do anything to help, even if you “only" saved one child. What if that were your child? Desperate people do desperate deeds. Those with a terminal illness would give everything they own just to get better. Even those who never believed, resort to prayer. Just think about it: if you and your loved ones ever went through hardship, and someone offered to help you in any way at all, do you remember how much you appreciated it? Maybe you said to yourself you would do the same for someone in the future. Now is the time to return the favour! Or you can do it just in case you ever find yourself in a similar situation and need help. Not only in Darfur – people in Slovenia and all over the world need help.
I think I really put myself out there by going to Darfur. My role is not marginal – I try to make it meaningful and optimal. Publicity is for actors who pretend to be acting their life. I cannot pretend, and neither can the children in Darfur. Their life is what it is – it is hardship.
Capitalism changed the world significantly, and I feel that people are becoming more and more individualist, egoistic and defensive about what they own. The economic crisis, the recession and the increasing unemployment are all bound to have a permanent impact on people. When things get tough, people tend to despair, and they are easy prey for individuals who would promise them anything to make the best of the grim situation. How should people protect themselves against such manipulations?
In Darfur, anyone is considered fortunate who is still alive and who still has hope they will survive. Life – one’s own and that of his or her loved ones – is the single and at the same time the biggest fortune one can wish for. They have no birth certificates to know how old they are. They have no bank accounts, no health insurance and no hospitals. They have no jobs, let alone pensions and retirement homes. And yet, all they wish for is peace and freedom. That would make them happier than we can ever be, despite all our possessions. All they need is a goat or a camel, a patch of land and water. Not bottled water, not even running water – it would be great if they didn’t need to walk all day to get it, and risk their lives getting there. An elementary school and maybe a hospital would be considered a luxury there. But they do have something we forgot, unfortunately: they have compassion, humanity and endless love. They still know how to forgive, how to help others selflessly, and how to enjoy every single day of their lives. They are much more HUMAN than we imagine we are.
What is my advice? We should feel blessed for living in this small and peaceful piece of heaven on earth. We need to realise and appreciate that today, and not only when we get ill or lose our material wealth. We only need so much. What we do not need, we should share with those less fortunate than us. And remember, we cannot take anything with us to the other side … They say: The funeral coffin has no pockets.
What are your hopes and wishes for the future?
I wish that humanitarian organisations such as H.O.P.E. Humanitarian Foundation would no longer be needed in the world.
Thank you very much for the detailed answers and I wish you success in your work.
Questions answers: Klemen Mihelic, UltraMind ESP System instructor and founder of the Humanitarian Foundation H.O.P.E.
Questions prepared by: Peter Petravič, Med.Over.Net
October 11. 2010