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Mechanics of the Mind

Oklahoma Magazine, Paul Fairchild, 2010


"Spencer Lord saw the light when the grating voice and off-the-hook opinions of a popular politician nearly drove him crazy every time he flipped on CNN.

But instead of changing the channel, he changed his mind. The light he saw was cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a psychiatric therapeutical practice developed decades ago that's only now finding its way into more general use. …

Lord's initial interest in CBT, a jumpstart on a master's degree in psychology, quickly turned into a hobby. After applying it in his life—for more than just making it possible to tolerate irritating politicians—it became an obsession. After wading through the thousands of pages and mountains of academic and technical lingo to get to the heart of CBT, Lord realized this life-changing technique would never be accessible to the layman unless somebody sat down and explained it in everyday language."

Prince Manvendra of India

​NEW YORK CITY, Ace Hotel Interview, 2011

"I can relate America to freedom because we are yet struggling to get ourselves free from the stigmatized and discriminated society with regards to the gay community. So I feel like I feel free, I feel happy to be in this kind of environment and so far they have organized a benefit dinner for me and there’s another one happening tomorrow. And a lot of other people are joining in, they have new ideas, and I plan to visit America on a regular basis just to get some information and contributions. And I’ve appointed a representative, my U.S. representative, Spencer Lord, who is with me in the hotel right now, and he’s going to take care of all my visits to America. Whether it’s New York or it’s San Francisco or it’s Chicago, wherever I go he will be planning it out for me. And yeah, at the same time I would wish that Americans also come down and I could expose them to our lifestyle, our royal lifestyle, what work we are doing in our foundation. So I think if the two countries like ours, America and India, join hands, we could achieve a lot for both of us. Like it will be a cultural exchange, it will be an exchange of ideas, information. We could learn something from America and America could learn something from us. So I think it’s high time we joined hands together for the betterment of the whole world."

―Crown Prince Manvendra Singh Gohil

The Brain Mechanic Excerpt: A Stickler For "Life-Changing" Evidence

"I'm a lot of things--naturalist, skeptic, "Bright", materialist--an evidence guy. Show me the evidence. And by "evidence," I mean show me the peer-reviewed study--with a decent sample size, double-blind, control group, the whole method.

The area of psychology responsible for seducing the stickler in me is called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy ("CBT"). Just Google it, then spend a half-a-dozen hours reading about its efficacy. CBT is adapted to treat everything--bulimia, drug addiction, anorexia, cigarette smoking, PTSD, depression, anxiety--the list goes on, and the efficacy rates are astonishing.

But what is it?

Simply put, it's "a change in thinking patterns." But what does that mean? Allow me to explain the basic premise through a few simple examples, and a pinch of autobiography. First, a thought exercise: We've all seen hidden camera shows on television. They set up the same gag and run it over and over. Why repeat it? Because every person who walks onto the set reacts differently. They each experience precisely the same set-up, or event, but they all have different emotional responses to that event. You can run the same gag all day and keep laughing because you will keep getting different, interesting, and often funny responses…."

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