Authenticity Alienates (That’s Okay)

Authenticity Alienates (That’s Okay)

I could brand myself as a business blog and I’d be credible since my retirement story is the the kind of thing that the blogosphere loves to jerk off to. I could talk about technology like I did when I was Ken Sharpe. I could talk about cognitive biases, or philosophy. The list continues.

I’m not comfortable branding myself in any of those ways. I keep revisiting my about page because it causes me dissonance—my most popular posts are practical, about customers, procrastination, entrepreneurship, but my about page makes me sound like a self help hippy.

But I never change it because I read over those words and they ring true. It turns out that I secretly am a hippy.

I do have a fire.

My deepest desire is to ignite that fire in others, and I want them to break out of their generic existence to spread that fire to others as well. Every time I write a productivity essay that gets a bunch of traffic from StumbleUpon, I’m disappointed because I know I’m missing my real target.

But the posts I write that hint at passion and fire don’t go anywhere. A few people read them and don’t comment, and Google doesn’t like them either. And for good reason: they are tepid. They only hint at what I’m talking about. They don’t bust out of your monitor and scream: “look at me motherfucker! Here is my blazing fury, feel it!”

My Fear

I’m not powerless or ignorant though, I know exactly why this is true. I’m afraid of alienating the people who love to hear productivity tips.

I think they won’t appreciate my thoughts about Prana and Chakras and energetic beings. Energy work.

What a fucking crackpot, this guy believes in that hippy bullshit.

I feel defensive even publicly admitting I am involved with it. Wait a minute, before you judge me, let me remind you that I’m a rationalist at heart, and I wouldn’t believe it if I didn’t have evidence.

Energy Flow

Energy work is the kind of thing that you’re right to be skeptical about, but that you can’t deny once you’ve seen it. Even my woman, who is already into New Age crap, didn’t really believe it as more than a convenient metaphor for body chemicals.

Then I did a session to clear an energy block in her solar plexus.

If you had been in the room watching, you would have seen me speaking soothingly to a very relaxed woman, running my hands on and over her body. Because of the size of the block I cleared for her, my soothing talk and gentle touch was followed by her labored breathing, then painful moaning, and eventually agonized writhing and crying.

She felt the energetic cruft and goop breaking up, spreading through her body, and blasting out of her pores, her mouth, her ears. As the healer, I felt the dark brownish, goopy energy infect my own, and I worked to clear it from both of our energetic bodies as it was expelled from the block. I heaved and wretched, my heart felt like it was being stabbed, I cried.

Then, like a kidney stone fully passed, it stopped. The block was clear, her energy body shined brightly from the light within once more, and my woman, no worse for the wear, felt an otherworldly calm and lightness like she’d never felt. The feeling of well-being persists, we talked about this morning. She apologized to me for ever doubting.

This shit is real.

Of course there are bullshit artists ready to sell you ear candles and palm readings. Much of the New Age movement is fluff, and I’ll be the first to call them on it. Conspiracy theorists think the government is run by alien lizards, but that doesn’t mean the government doesn’t exist. Phone psychics may be trained in cold reading, but that doesn’t mean your energetic field doesn’t have information that some people (like me) can perceive.

I don’t pretend to know the mechanisms at play, or even to have a full picture of how it all works in practice, but I know that the basic ideas of prana and chakras are correct because I am able to see, feel, and manipulate them. I can check with similar people who confirm what I’m seeing. When I’m given permission, I look into a person’s mind and see what they thought were dark secrets, and I lay them out in the light.


It began as insight into other peoples’ thoughts, progressed to seeing visible energy move across and between living things, and blossomed into a more robust understanding of human beings.

I’m not talking about souls or duality at all (I don’t believe in the supernatural, the concept is incoherent), I’m talking about hypernatural phenomena.

Stuff that exists in reality, along with rocks and cell phones, but that we don’t really understand yet. Stuff that a huge and growing population knows is out there from personal experience, but that hasn’t quite been connected to modern science yet (for a number of reasons that I expect to explore here).

The dissonance and fear have festered long enough. I’ve been beating around the bush since very near the beginning of my writing here. Now it’s out.

Alienating with the Truth

I’m sure that owning my unusual beliefs will alienate some people. I’d encourage regular readers who are put off by this to at least give me the benefit of the doubt: you’ve read from me in the past because you think I have some insight, so if I push you past a comfort zone, stay with me to see where I’m going. I think I’ve earned that. If nothing else, ignoring my thoughts on “energy” means missing out on a tremendously useful tool for harnessing the power of your mind, even if I’m totally out to lunch on the real mechanism at work (I’m not, but that’s for you to decide).

I’m also sure that sharing my beliefs and knowledge will attract many others who otherwise would not have resonated with my work—it will be the kick that many long-time readers need to see that they aren’t alone, and it’ll bring other readers into the fold.

My Fire

When I say there’s a fire inside me, that I’m ignited, I’m not being poetic. I’m saying that I literally have an energetic fire burning in my chest, pushing its way out, inspiring and compelling me to spread it.

When I tell you to throw yourself onto the fire, I mean that inner fire of love, passion, and courage that has the power to scour your bones of fear, doubt, and pain. I’m talking to about setting yourself on fire with possibility, connecting to your purpose, and creating a meaningful life.

If you’re with me, I have so much gratitude for you. If you’re not sure, stay here and watch, see what happens. I have amazing things in store.

Throw yourself onto the fire. This is your sign.


  1. Tony ()

    I felt a deep emotion when you talked about her session with you. Its funny how you can feel it even through words. (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      It just confirms to me that it’s an essentially emotional phenomenon–emotional closeness has little to do with physical closeness. (Reply)

  2. Morgan ()

    Way to go Pete =D!

    It’s interesting how you mentioned your lady friend’s transition from a metaphoric to a literal understanding of energy…

    I think we’re all stuck between those two modes.

    We all know there are many layers of mechanics in the world that we don’t understand.

    Just depends on how much fear we’re able to live with, seeing how much we don’t know and opening up to stuff we might be able to learn.

    I can’t wait to hear more of the raw truth burning in your heart; I look up to you, and I could definitely use some social proof that sharing without the burden of a facade is powerful.

    Thank you again. (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      You’re welcome Morgan, you are creating your reality: you get the social proof you need by giving it to me, and I’m grateful to have it. (Reply)

  3. Dyamond ()

    I’m proud of you.

    This piece, I feel, is one of your most powerful. I believe when one follows what one is most passionate about- the results will be so much more fruitful than if they followed a “safe” route.

    You sound pretty crazy, but I believe in you and I’m sure others do as well.

    You have unleashed the divine within. That in itself is beautiful. I am interested to see how you will effect others with your gift.

    I can feel the fire in you from reading this. I can’t wait to witness how your journey unfolds.

    Metta. (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      Thanks Dyamond, I don’t know if you realize this, but you’re actually the one who sent me in this direction. We connected at just the right moment. I honor you for that 8) (Reply)

  4. Rich ()

    Authenticity is nothing to be fearful of.

    But, what’s the deal with claiming that you’re a “rationalist”? I think every human is great at rationalizing – it’s how we are wired. Even the most ignorant people can rationalize why their opinions are superior. But almost everything that you write on your blog is aimed to stop this, which is great. You try to get people to stop rationalizing and start thinking logically. So be a little more authentic in your self-descriptors and give yourself some credit – we’re all mostly rationalists instinctively, but you’ve evolved to a more logical approach to life.

    Plus, labels disable (Reply)

    • Jason K ()

      I agree with some of what you say, however the perceived discrepancy of him calling himself a rationalist while discouraging rationalization is incorrect. To be a rationalist is to rely on reason as the basis for establishment of scientific and religious truths. Whereas rationalization is to attribute (one’s actions) to rational and creditable motives without analysis of true and especially unconscious motives ; broadly : to create an excuse or more attractive explanation for .
      The misunderstanding is an easy one to make, and I hope others who made it will read this and grasp the truer meaning of the concepts. (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      I actually don’t think everyone even wants to be rational. Many people just do “what they feel.”

      Anyway, “rationalist” means more than rationalization–it means that the world is knowable, and there is a system through which we can know it. It also most of the time means materialism, which is actually the reason I brought it up–maybe it would have better to say I’m a materialist at heart. (Reply)

  5. Rosine Caplot ()

    Hi Pete,

    I like you very much. I checked your blog a couple times, saw productivity tips, conventional personal development and goal achievement stuff, and went away.

    You will alienate some people, and attract some other new people. The advantage of being authentic is that those you attract resonate with who you really are.

    Love and hugs,

    Rosine. (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      Thanks for stopping by Rose, I like you too 8) Let me know if I can cover any particular topic you’re interested in. (Reply)

  6. Laura Cowan ()

    Thanks for sharing what you really want to share with the world, Pete. That’s courageous.

    You might be interested to know that some growing wings of Christianity (Catch The Fire Toronto, International House of Prayer Kansas, and many other organizations like them) are a lot more aware of spirituality and its connection with physical healing than people in the Church have been in many many years. They believe that the supernatural can explain this, however, and that New Age is the counterfeit. If you’re interested in exploring that I can send you some links to folks who talk about it. I have noticed a direct parallel between some body work I have had done and the somato-emotional release sometimes required for healing during healing prayer. Same mechanics, sometimes different source of healing. There’s a lot we don’t know, you’re absolutely right. (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      Hey Laura!

      Sure, I’m open to reading. Christianity has a long history of mysticism and healing, it’s true. It’s interesting to me how the mystics of every religion all essentially agree.

      One other Christian church that’s into this stuff is called Unity, they are all over the USA and I think some other countries as well! (Reply)

  7. Karilee ()

    I’m along for the ride, and may it be a long one. Rationalist? Check. Hypernatural experiences? Check.

    What kind of a small, limited universe would it be, if we already understood it all? Just because we don’t always understand doesn’t mean we have to reject our experience.

    You’re courageous, Pete. I’m cheering on your journey, and inspired by it. (Reply)

  8. cynthia ()

    i love the fire, have since the first time I stumbled on your blog following a breadcrumb trail of gamification. We need original thinkers like you to build a bridge between the known world and the unknown world. I’ll follow you anywhere, and the bigger the adventure that challenges me to stretch and grow the better. Whee! (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      Thanks Cynthia, I’m really going to try to build that bridge, but I know I’ll need help, so I’m happy to have you along for the ride. (Reply)

  9. Rachael ()

    I’m loving the colour of this fire!!

    I already love the truth you share but this post positively crackled and sparked with full authenticity. A brave move and one I really hope you take all the way.

    Being an energy healer myself I’m all aboard but I was hanging around anyway.

    Authenticity does alienate but I know which side I prefer. (Reply)

      • Rachael ()

        I work with EFT and absolutely consider myself a closet hippy who has pushed her nose out the door and every day peaks out a little further.

        Those I’ve come out to (besides my clients) have been a little confused but I kinda like that look on their lovely faces ;) (Reply)

  10. patrice ()


    thank you for this week’s offering – POWER-FULL!! i always look forward to your mail in my inbox.

    can you please share the name of the healing modality you used? my first thought was pranic healing? please advise; i’d love to research more.

    looking forward to your next post!

    all the BEST!!!

    patrice (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      I am entirely self-taught when it comes to energy work, but yes, I think based on what I’ve read recently that what I do is pranic healing. Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate your support 8) (Reply)

  11. Paul ()

    Hey Pete,

    Thanks for this essay.

    I found your blog recently and it’s been blowing me away. I found your essays at the right time for me personally. I am so desperate to break out of the mold and release the energy within me to become the person that I am who is locked up in chains inside of me. I have been a believer of these concepts for some time yet have not found the key to unlocking those chains. The fire within is strong. I have a purpose. I am getting closer to it. I have seen it. I have felt it. I believe to my deepest core that there is much more. But I cannot release it. Posting here is part of reaching out. I will break free. You have renewed my hope and vigor. I will not give up. I ask for help. I submit fully. It is only a matter of time. Thank you Pete.

    Paul (Reply)

  12. Jake ()

    Judging by the amount of positive comments i dont think anyone can tell you that youve made a mistake going in this direction :)

    - i think more and more people are waking up to these subtle energies, in my own experience, i used to be incredibly skeptical about this new age woo woo stuff until i spontaneously astral projected one night – i had lucid dreamed before but this was completely different, it blew me away and turned everything i believed in upside down. immediately afterwards i read everything there was to read on the subject and even took a step by step online course with to develop the energy body and learn how to do it

    everyone has the ability to access and manipulate these subtle energies, it isnt the case where some people are born with it and some arent – and sometimes all it takes is a blog post like petes to open up an entire new world for people that for centuries was previously reserved for reclusive mystics

    sounds like you were performing something similar to Reiki Pete? if you are self taught well done! you have an innate talent :) (Reply)

    • Pete ()

      I totally agree about people being able to access and manipulate the energies. I think it’s just a matter of encculturating people to the concept and taking these experiences off the margins.

      It’s similar in concept to Reiki, but it’s not actually Reiki. (Reply)

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  14. baku ()

    Hi Pete,
    I would like to know what kind of discipline do you followed to improve/master your inner energy. (Reply)

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