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A Buddha for The Pepsi Generation?


Are you currently living a life that has been "rigged" to limit and frustrate your highest hopes and dreams? Worse yet, are you the culprit behind this sorry state of affairs?

This is the central premise of Robert Scheinfeld, one of the Human Potential movement's most innovative and radical thinkers. Not content to offer incremental improvement and a few techniques to add comfort to a modern "life of quiet desperation", Robert is providing a 21st century cutting edge platform for those who thirst and hunger for what he calls Phase 2 of the human game: Busting Loose from the cult of self limitation we have ALL created called modern life.

My involvement with Robert began with a friend's rapt recommendation of the book "Busting Loose from the Money Game." I had just experienced some dramatic reversals of fortune in the financial area, so the title was timely, compelling and attractive to me. After just a few chapters, I knew that Robert was definitely on to something - something that included but far transcended dollars and cents. This was also far beyond the modern "prosperity consciousness", "The Secret", and/or the "Millionaire Mind". Robert was going right for the jugular: here was a man talking about joy, expansion and freedom, and a return to our infinite, expansive, and enlightened origin!

I was reading the teachings of a modern Buddha, with a timeless message of personal liberation updated and formatted for our money-obsessed Pepsi generation. One "Sleepless in LA" night of reading later, my cells were literally humming in recognition of being in the company of a new, liberating, and substantive truth. A few days later, I was on a plane to what Robert calls a "Phase 2" get together in the suburbs of Washington DC for Phase 2 practitioners from Europe, the US, and Australia. After the weekend immersion, Robert kindly agreed to an interview. He also provided me the home study course for "Busting Loose from the Emotions Game," to help me get a more global picture on his "busting loose" philosophy.

Robert displayed great candor in describing his life. Despite an early encounter with his grandfather Aaron, who pointed him in the direction of discovering the invisible world (unfortunately passing away before showing him the way there), the adult Robert found himself immersed in the visible one. "I received great results, but I was a classic workaholic and overachiever", he said in our phone interview. "I had great results, but I would never have been described as a happy camper. There was always a neurotic overlay. I was trapped in a cycle of perennial money ups and down. The numbers got bigger, going from thousands to millions, but the experience was never satisfactory. In fact, if there was one word that could be used to describe me, it would have been tortured!"

There was one final message from his grandfather (who was the founder of Manpower, the world's first and largest temporary employment service), delivered to Robert from Aaron's deathbed. "{Robert} As you grow up you are going to learn a lot about money. And it is going to feel and seem perfectly reasonable and right. But none of it is true. The illusion that it is true is what is causing people's misery." Piecing that illusion, and how that illusion ties into limiting us, became the foundation for his work.

While money was not the only area in Robert's life causing discomfort, it was a big one. So Robert began putting together "a jigsaw puzzle without a picture of the completed puzzle to guide him", over the next 30 years. Looking to decipher what his grandfather actually meant, he slowly assembled the understanding and the tools to extract him from what he now calls "Phase 1" of the "Human Game." This happened for Robert five years ago.

Here's his central premise in a nutshell. We are the creators of the limitation game. We create all the variables that cultivate this illusion of limitation. We all begin life dependant on parents for guidance, nurturance, and support (OK Hilary would say it takes a village as well!). This is the beginning of the Phase 1, a time of self limitation where we give our power away to our families, limited self image, teachers/healers, culture, gods, emotions, & (of course) the almighty dollar. We know we are disempowered because we feel discomfort, which is the feedback that our larger Self provides us to know that a change is necessary.

Busting Loose teaching focuses in on recognizing and understanding why we are uncomfortable and bound in the first of the two Phases (stages or steps in our awakening process): Phase 1 limitation, and then how to respond to our infinite inner guidance and step out on to the Phase 2 dance floor. To Robert, a Phase 2 player of the Human Game has assumed the task of extricating himself from the bondage of our matrix "as the living power and presence of God, here to enjoy the full measure of the "Human Game". The Buddha would be proud!

His foundational understanding, a fascinating mélange culled from quantum theory, moviemaking, and the holographic nature of reality, is that we are the full creators of everything we experience. And that that this creation serves to present us a life of limitation, where we hide our true nature from ourselves (Phase 1) or a life of joyfulness, an ability to play, and a sense of freedom (Phase 2). We are in charge, and in Phase 2 the ball is in our court. If motivated, we can reconstruct our life from an authentic foundation.

Robert often cites the awakening of Neo triggered by Morpheus in the movie "The Matrix" in his books, ongoing seminars, and personal coaching programs. He sees Neo's escape from the Matrix as extremely analogous to the same awakening we each must undergo. It is in Phase 2 life that you can begin to discover our human potential. Who wouldn't want to spend some time in Phase 2?

The central tool or mechanism for practical enlightenment (unlike Morpheus', decidedly non-pharmaceutical) in Busting Loose is The Process. The Process is a self-administered technique. It is a six stage method for reclaiming personal power and universal perspective. To free ourselves we must unhook from a palpable web of self limitation reinforced not only by ourselves, but by our social fabric, religion, governments, media, and popular culture. We have the choice, in this moment, between the red pill of awakening and the blue pill of forgetfulness. "Who we are", he says, "are infinite beings. The human journey is about first convincing yourself that you are not an infinite being, that you are small and limited (that is what Robert describes as Phase 1), and then stepping back into it {the infinite state, aka Phase 2}."

"Busting Loose" offer us that rare philosophy, enlightened and practical, that provides accessible tools for anyone looking to "Bust Loose" from self limitation. In this era of self-empowerment and personal responsibility, it will be interesting to see what impact Robert and his teachings have. Time will tell.

For more info on this title, some fascinating videos, and Robert's other work, seminars and coaching services, go to

For Malibu Chronicle 11/14/ 2007 Mark Appleman


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