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Excerpts from Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition
by Matt Moody, Ph.D.



Overview.  Changing Your Stripes is organized in three 3 sections — Situation, Self, and Solutions. The Situation section offers a Sociology for understanding the influences of your outer world. The section on Self suggests a Psychology for understanding your inner world. Finally, the Solutions section explains True Principles that lead to self-fulfillment and peace within your inner and outer world. And to arrive at this place of peace, You must experience a fundamental Change from your Core — a Change of Heart.

"Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life"
~ Proverbs 4:233

Changing Your Stripes renders a rebuttal to the wildly-popular yet erroneous notion that fundamental change occurs as people program their Heads with positive affirmations; in contrast, my book explains why lasting change can only come from the Heart and happens with the help of Heaven. Changing Your Stripes explains why human misery has Spiritual Roots.

Lasting change from your core occurs as True Principles are loved and lived! Freedom from self-defeating habits requires living True Principles from the Heart, there is no other way.

"The only change that matters is a change of heart,
every other change alters us cosmetically but not fundamentally,
modifies how we appear, what we do or what we say,
but does not change who we are."

~ C. Terry Warner.

It's true that positive attitude and vivid visualizing can raise your bowling score, improve your golf swing, and make you a more dazzling dancer — but the same cognitive conjuring cannot increase your character or bring peace to a troubled soul. Using “Head” remedies alone, even the strongest mental determinations to be a better person will not work.

You can't really "think" yourself into being happy,
neither can you chant enough affirmations to change
yourself into a person of higher character.

Cognitive therapies of mental programming may alter outward appearances, but who you are from the Heart remains unchanged. Like ripples that undulate from a pebble cast in a pond, leaving the pond unaltered at its depths, the superficial effects of mind power eventually dissipate and disappear.

*   *   *   *   *   *   *

The Division of Response-Ability. Want to know what you're made of? Watch what comes out of you under pressure! When life squeezes you with trials and troubles, how do you respond?

The Division of Responsibility is drawn: “If it comes out of you, . . . it is yours.” You are the author of all your responses: the good, the bad, and the ugly! Embracing this principle is empowering! For if you are the ultimate author of your thoughts, behaviors, motives, and emotions, then you also possess veto power. Otherwise, you're stuck!

* * * * *
Irritating behavior of others presents a Constraint to which you respond.
And while that bothersome behavior may necessarily capture your
attention,  the  obnoxious  actions  of  others  cannot  cause
the particular style or Character of your Response.
You are the author of your responses. Only
when you own Response-Ability for
Actions can you change them.
.* * * * *.
(Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 17)

A Self-Perpetuating Problem. You will act according to the Animal You Are until you Change Your Stripes and Become a New Kind of Creature.

* * * * *
The tone and temper of all Reaction and Response
inevitably depends upon the disposition of the
perceiver — the core of your character.
.* * * * *

Changing Your Stripes is a vital project because your own disposition of character is an obstacle to obtaining your own best interests — it’s the old “you-are-your-own-worst-enemy” dilemma. Even though “free to choose” rhetoric runs rampant in pitches of positive mental attitude, still the stark reality remains: You are only as free as Your current character allows.

In other words impatience people are NOT free to be patient and kind — especially under the press of distress. Impatient people will continue to be impatient, until they experience a fundamental change from their core. (Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 7)

In life, the color and character of your response is all important. The way you react is a reflection of who you are from the heart.

* * * * *
It's not What Happens to you in Life, but how
You Respond to “What Happens” that matters most;
oppressive people may compel your flesh, but no power
on earth can force you from Inner Liberty —
it is yours to lose or keep.
.* * * * *.

Responding well to life's adversities leads to contented living. Who You Are from the Heart defines whether poisoned or positive emotions flow from you in a pressing moment.

Can you see the intrinsic trap before you? The very condition of your disposition is naturally self-perpetuating. You reinforce who you are today . . . because who you are presently IS the person doing the thinking, perceiving, responding and choosing! This is why people behave in consistent habit patterns. How can you possibly think fresh new thoughts using your stale old mindset?(Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 16)

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when you buy "Changing Your Stripes" .

Einstein's Mind Bind. Impaired perceptions inevitably lead to flawed solutions. The reason why people do not, and often cannot, find their way out of a problem is explained by a conundrum I call “Einstein’s Mind Bind” — you can’t change your mind using the same mind that needs changing, nor can you fix a situation, using a mind that needs fixing. Here’s how this bind of the mind was stated by Einstein:

* * * * *
"We cannot solve our problems
at the same level of thinking which existed
when the problem was created."
.* * * * *

This means in order to solve any problem, a paradigm shift is required!  A shift from the way of thinking that was capable of creating a problem in the first place, . . . to a way of thinking that can perceive a new perspective. Further, thinking that you can solve Life’s most important problems with your “thinking,” is itself a problem — again, you can't fix a situation, using a mind that needs fixing. You're trapped in Einstein’s Mind Bind.

When confronted with a crucial issue, some say, “I need to figure things out, I need a strategy.” Using your Head is a good approach for solving problems of algebra, but not for solving problems of anguish. The mental mindset used to create an interpersonal problem cannot be used to solve it.

But from whence comes a mindset capable of creating chaos? It could be a function of shear ignorance, that’s one possibility, and the other source is betrayal. (Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Ed. p. 175)

All the Telltale Signs are identified in Dr Matt's book: Changing Your Stripes!
Tell-Tale Signs of Betrayal. Betrayal is a word to describe moments when you are out of harmony with your own sense of truth. As Shakespeare expressed, “To thine own self be true, therefore thou canst not be false to any man.” Betrayal means being false to others, as well as yourself. When you go against your own sense of goodness, you lose Life's inherent harmony; inner conflict is created and outward signs seep to the surface.

* * * * *
When I go against my own sense of Truth,
I go against myself — I am false.
Being false, the way I experience the world is colored
by my falseness: I see darkness in my world,
because of the darkness in me. My thinking, my emotions,
and how I behave are all tainted by betrayal.
My search for solutions is skewed,
It is wrong, . . . because I am wrong.
.* * * * *

A thorough understanding of the tell-tale signs of betrayal can provide awareness sufficient to catch yourself and correct your course. The patterns are predictable and observable; they are signs central to the aim of Un-Doing! Seeing these signs in yourself will provide a huge clue . . . to what you need to Un-Do. (Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 173)

Dr Matt says: "The Tell-Tale Signs of Betrayal are detailed in my book!"

If you're serious about Changing Your Stripes, you need to
Put your Peepers on the Words in My Book.

You'll be so much smarter and happier if you do!

When you Undo the betrayals that obstruct the flow of Inner Goodness . . . then the Do will naturally flow from you!
A Simple Solution: Un-Doing.
You’ve heard the phrase “this will be their undoing.” Typically, an undoing is a bad thing: unraveling, falling apart, or breaking up — all these are bad. But consider a type of undoing that is good. In the process of Changing Your Stripes, you don't do it: You Un-Do It!

Solutions could be pursued with the complexity of what we think we need to accomplish: Investing mental energies into dozens of things to Do in an arduous effort to become prominent or magnificent. But this is to begin wrong! Instead our focus need only be on Un-Doing. One step at a time, line upon line, we simply need to Un-Do the NEXT thing.

* * * * *
Letting the Real Me Emerge is not something
I "make" happen, but something I "let" happen.
.* * * * *

Because you are fundamentally good by nature, you don’t really need to try to be good, or learn to be good; instead, your task is simply to recapture the goodness that is IN YOU. At birth you began as a being of love: You were naturally generous and sharing, naturally bright and cheerful — you possessed a spark of spontaneous goodness.

But when we fail to follow our own intuitions of innocence, our spontaneous spark of goodness, we go against ourselves — we betray the truth! Each betrayal creates an obstruction to the flow of life-giving goodness that wells within, and as that stream is stifled, we begin to behave badly. Unblocking that flow IS the goal of Un-Doing. (Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 168).

BRIAR Emotions are identified in Dr Matt's book: Changing Your Stripes!
Feelings that are False: BRIAR Emotions. In betrayal, certain Tell-Tale Signs seep to the surface and are outwardly expressed:

* * * * *
You can lie with your MOUTH or EMOTION:
"When you're in the BRIAR, . . . You're a LIAR."
.* * * * *

While the lies from our lips are more obvious, lies can also be “told” without words. Resentful and accusing emotions are nonverbal lies that we live — wordless lies that brew beneath. As we harbor irritated and tense emotions, we are entangled in the thorny mire of the BRIAR.

The BRIAR represents Lies that we “tell” via Emotion.
The BRIAR represents Lies that we Live!

These unsettled emotions show in our countenance; they reveal our betrayal of Truth. Because these feelings are false, we are Being False as we harbor them. BRIAR Emotions are one set of tell-tale signs that signal the loss of Life's inherent harmony.

* * * * *
When I am False . . . I feel
tension, agitation . . . disharmony.
My Unsettled Emotions signal falseness.
When I am True, I am at Peace;
the Peace that flows freely
signifies Harmony.
.* * * * *

Visualize a canvas of pure white, the kind of canvas that an artist uses to paint a portrait. Think of your life as a collection of colors being painted upon this clean, clear canvas. With every word you think and every deed you do, the portrait of your life is painted; and in contrast to pure white, any tint or shade less than white is obvious and conspicuous. Against an immaculate backdrop, you are able to see with perfect clarity, how some motives and emotions fall short of pure white.

                                          Pure Love                                                       Less-than-Love
Emotions of Bright White                                  Black & Gray Emotions

                            calm             approachable                                  impetuous                edgy
                            lovely             enthusiastic                                   suspicious             angry
                            amiable            nurturing                                  defensive              cranky
                            engaging              friendly                                  arrogant             peevish
                            fascinating              happy                                  jealous               resentful
                            welcoming                 sweet                                  galled                annoying
                            cherishing                 giving                                  mean               impatient
                            animated             genuine                                  bitter              malicious
                            gracious            generous                                  bored               apathetic
                            cheery             passionate                                   listless                worried
                            lively            comfortable                                  irritated              fearful
                            real           warmhearted                                   conceited                tense

When we are being less-than-loving, the portrait we paint upon the white canvas is clouded by confusion; instead of vivid hues of red, blue, and green, a quarreling collision of colors makes the muddied shades of black and gray. Thus the portrait of our Life loses clarity . . . and beauty. Against the backdrop of bright white, even the subtlest shades of gray are easily exposed.
(Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 195)

Dr Matt says: "BRIAR Emotions are identified & explained in my book!
32 pages are dedicated to defining and understanding
Emotion — E-Motion — Energy-In-Motion."

The Voice of the Light is heard in the Light!
The Light of Innocence. When I am physically cold, if I move from the shadows of darkness into the rays of the sun, I become warm again, naturally and consistently. When cold, the Sun warms me as I walk into the Light.

When my soul is cold, . . . chilled with the bitterness of blame and resentment, I can move from the shadows of dark emotions into the Light of Inner Innocence, and there I find a gentle contentment that melts my cold emotions. Like the shining rays of the Sun, the Light within illuminates the way. The Light of Innocence guides me to the warmth of Inner Peace.

* * * * *
I must move from the shadows . . . and
find a place where warmth and peace caress me.
Walk in the Light and I am warmed by peaceful radiance.
Walk in the Light and I clearly hear the Whisperings of the Light.
.* * * * *

As I align myself to my own sense of goodness, my Intuitions of Inner Innocence, I return to the way I began, balance and harmony is restored. Being True means I am aligned to the Light of Innocence. Entering into this warm and peaceful Light naturally relieves me from the chill of darkness: cold emotions depart, calm and clarity enter in. (Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 162)

Thinking that scars never heal is a FLAT EARTH Assumption!
The Myth of Emotional Scars. Years after experiencing a trauma, some claim emotional pain due to that difficulty; they blame their present pain upon a past event. In their mind, they think the past situation “caused” the pain they still feel years later. This could be the case if bodily contact occurred and physical damage was done, but if the pain is purely emotional, then the principles governing this “pain” are different.

the idea of emotional scars got its impetus from the tangible reality of physical scarring. Physical scars occur when bodies are battered or broken, and as they heal, the evidence of abuse or accident remains in the flesh.

The theory behind “emotional scarring” is similar, but it’s the inner person that is battered and broken; thus the parallel assumption is that emotional scars, like physical scars, leave a “mark” that never goes away — but this assumption is false.

* * * * *
The physical flesh has its own realm of reaction,
uniquely different from the emotional realm of reaction;
while it’s commonly assumed that “emotional scars”
never completely heal and never go away,
such is a Flat-Earth Assumption.
.* * * * *

When a victim concludes, “I've been emotionally scarred for life,” this claim is comparable to the false alarm: “Help, I'm falling off the edge of the earth!” When we get completely clear about the realities of Cause as opposed to Constraint (see pages 3-12), we understand that it’s impossible for a traumatic situation to “cause” emotional pain after the initiating event is over — just as water no longer flows from a faucet when the valve has been shut off. (Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 224)

Dr Matt knows the key to Healing Emotional Scars. "Changing Your Stripes"
details what must be done to make Emotional Scars disappear.

If you're serious about Changing Stripes, you need to
Put your Peepers on the Words in My Book.

By applying the Principles in my Book,
all emotional scars that keep you from living
your Best Life, will heal and completely disappear.

It's hard to believe, but YES you really can Change The Past!

Changing the Past. What people call “emotional scars” is the perceived suffering that remains years after a traumatic event is over — after the afflicting faucet has been shut off. Today's trauma and assumed “scars” exist solely by the way you re-member the past today; and that very way of re-membering the past is informed and fed by the person you've become, from the time a past trauma occurred . . . to the present day — the day you do your re-membering.

To think that your memories are tormenting you, is a false perception. The Truth is, it is you re-doing your old memories in every new day; and the way your memories are re-membered, is a function of who you are today (see page 89).

It is said, “the only constant is change.” This means, you will always re-member "the past" differently as you constantly "change" in the present — as you progress or regress in maturity and character. Because perception is a function of what you've learned to date. So emotional marks necessarily change over time, . . . as you change over time.

* * * * *
While there are Physical Realities
that exist independent of how you perceive them,
still, the only World you know is the one you experience
through your Interpretations, from your Perspective.
As You Change, Your Perspective Changes.
As You Change, the Past Changes.
.* * * * *

(Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 244)

Dr Matt says: "Changing Your Stripes has many more important
points about the real possibility of Changing The Past —
24 pages are dedicated to this particular topic."

* * * * *
The Greatest Prize
for Life's labors isn't
in material possessions
or impressive accomplishments,
but in the progress of personal character.
You labor for your own becoming, this is your richest reward.
Who You Become is your greatest possession . . . make it your Masterpiece!
.* * * * *
(Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page 274)

Secular Psychology strives to find the biological bases for human behavior or the environmental causes; both are a bad beginning. !
It's-Not-Your-Fault Psychology. Some therapies for solving life’s ever-appearing problems come from secular psychology — perspectives that foster an inferior starting point, a poor premise:

What is it about my bad biology, my bad brain chemistry, and/or
my bad upbringing that “causes” the misery in which I am mired?

Because the origins for human problems are assumed to be “caused” by physical factors in the body or by a bad environment, I call this kind of science:

It’s-Not-Your-Fault Psychology

Ironically, the very institution that you look to for healing and happiness often enables you to reject personal response-ability, and instead encourages you to blame emotions and actions on your bad upbringing or bad biology. Such convenient excuses come via dubious diagnoses: Bi-Polar, A.D.D., P.T.S.D., O.C.D., etc. — dis-orders that people purportedly “come down with” like physical diseases.

And if a disorder is not in order, Excuse-Making Psychology will assist you in blaming your misery of mind and emotion on the influence of unfit parents or inappropriate peers. Regardless of diagnosis, the bottom-line for this kind of science is:  It’s Not Your Fault!

But with this false assumption comes the inescapable conclusion that you're Stuck! Why? Since you supposedly did NOT choose your way into a problem (because it’s blamed on bad biology or bad upbringing), then you can't choose your way out of that problem either. Since the problem is supposedly caused in your body, or in your environment, solutions offered by secular science typically come in the form of a Pill or a Potion. (Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Ed., p. xi)

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when you buy "Changing Your Stripes"

Psychology offers a superior perspective compared to the stale traditions of secular psychology!
A Superior Premise for Satisfying Solutions.
We live in an excuse-making society that entices us to blame someone else, or something else, for the irritable and sometimes insane reactions that come out of us. Truth is, personal peace and self fulfillment are found in the exact opposite direction from blame and excuse.

When you can fully own your responses of mind and emotion, you can live free from the self-imposed prison of a victim’s mentalityeven when victimized. As you Change Your Stripes, you will enjoy the victor’s view: You will increase in strength of character directly because of tough times not just in spite of them.

Superior Solutions unfold by focusing upon the present moment, and what is happening NOW in terms of your Response-Ability.

* * * * *
One Conscious Choice at at time
You choose your Propensity to be Provoked;
You even choose your Propensity . . . to Insanity.
You are Response-Able for the Person that You Become.
An All-Wise Creator designed You
to be Response-Able.
.* * * * *
(Changing Your Stripes, 3rd Edition, page xiii)

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