Have you ever attended a laughter session where most of the exercises are gibberish? It is fun, and it comes with a load of benefits for the mind, body, and soul. According to Alex Sternick, life is illogical, and we need to laugh about it because we cannot control it.
Alex Sternick is our guest today. Alex has a BSc.in Clinical Nutrition. He is an expert and internationally recognized practitioner of ART OF NONSENSE and Laughter Therapy. Alex is the man behind laughter yoga clubs in Israel. Alex began his laughter journey in India in 2003, where he worked with terminally ill patients. Then he practiced in Ethiopia as a laughter therapist in Mother’s Mission and a nutritionist with SaveTheChildren USA.
These experiences inspired him to bring laughter yoga to Israel. In 2004, he started the first laughter club in Jerusalem and brought the leading experts to the country, including Dr. Madan Kataria and World Laughter Master Belachew Girma, to run workshops. Alex has also worked with Israelis and Arabs to bring these diverse groups together through laughter and nonsense.
Key Talking Points of the Episode:
[02:00] How Alex discovered laughter yoga
[20:16] Did laughter help Alex deal with his childhood traumas?
[26:51] What is a trauma?
[32:28] How gibberish works for the brain and the body
[38:22] A beautiful story of an Arab Israeli lady
[42:29] Connect with Alex
[44:26] Three things that bring Alex joy
Standout Quotes from the Episode:
“We should accept the fact that things are illogical. And what is left is to laugh about it.”
“In our hospitals, we’re dealing with scientific facts. But the last thing which can be scientific is a human being.”
“You cannot cope with a tsunami when you’re always in this planning mindset, linear, and try to force the reality and the external world to behave according to your logic.”
“When you have enough oxygen in the body, you cannot get cancer.”
“I know many people who do laughter yoga, and they are unhappy. You must face your dark side at will.”
Connect with Alex:
What did you learn from this episode?
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If you enjoyed this episode, you should 100% listen to the founder of laughter yoga Madan Kataria talking to the laughter man.
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Pete Cann 00:03
Hello, I’m Pete Cann. Laughter leader, positive thinker, and entrepreneur, and you’re listening to laughter and positivity with Pete, where each week I’ll bring you tips and tricks to lead a happier, more positive life. Ready? Let’s go. Hey guys, thank you so much for tuning into this week’s laughter and positivity. And this week I am honored to be joined by Alex Sternick. Hopefully I got that right Alex.
Alex Sternick 00:35
Humanity right yeah tastic
Pete Cann 00:38
He’s international Humour coach who works on self-acceptance, helping people to befriend with their shadow vulnerability and discomfort through nonlinear conformist work on stage based on wisdom or false nonsense gibberish, et cetera, et cetera. How’s that Alex? Was it good? Great. So, Alex, thank you so much for coming on to my show. Robin mentioned your name and I you know, I spoken about gibberish a couple of times with other people and and people speak to Alex You MUST speak to Alex so
Alex Sternick 01:20
it’s just a peachy keen a practice therapy for you the bricks color gibberish and excesses takes up so badly in the flexibles
Pete Cann 01:29
Bella Bella here. It’s a bit of it here but Dana
Pete Cann 01:41
maybe we need a translation. I don’t know how they do just subtitle this. Alex, For the listeners, obviously I’ve introduced you. But let us know a little bit about yourself. You know how you discovered laughter yoga, I would be a great start to the conversation. Yeah,
Alex Sternick 02:01
we have to start with laughter yoga because everything should have a gateway. So I’m actually a very I was a clinical nutritionist restrain as clinical nutritionist also having very, very serious and painful childhood and a lot of seriousness around my family, a lot of quick illnesses, both mental and both physical, we had both. I was considered to be very weird. As a person, you know, there are some people who are not fitting in the qualifications of a society. So I had a very miserable life childhood. After finishing malnutrition, a BSc degree in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Are you heard about some medical doctor from New York In New Yorker who adopted many, many street children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. I said maybe if I want to go away from Israel forever and ever come back, I will go to Ethiopia to work as a nutritionist maybe this guy can help me. And I met him in Israel actually is a Jewish he told me yeah, you come to Addis Ababa and you maybe will have a lack of you will be accepted in one of those NGOs working there and malnutrition. So I said yes, I will come but firstly, let me go to India. Because I’m everybody knows them in India fan, steel. I met a family, a Baptist family in Bangalore in Bangalore, and they wanted me as a Jewish boy to come and bless them. So and volunteer, they had an orphanage in school. So I went there. And one time I was drinking my tea and reading the New Times of India. And then I saw an ad in the newspaper, which is mentioning the big discount on books, English books, I said, I’m going to pick some books. And when I went there to that shop, I was roaming around and so many, many books in a nice big disorder. And then my I just finished a book that on the car on the on the cover front was this picture of people doing a lot of laughter. And I just took a took this book opened, it started to read a bit, and it was the story of Katari about laughter clubs concept in India. I said this is very rare and strange. I’ve done Tai Chi. I’ve done some Reiki before, but mostly Tai Chi was my first gate to spirituality. I took this book, I bought it, I started to read it. I said I want to start with that. And then I connected it was 2003. I connected with Madan, and he encouraged me to try it out with the local laughter clubs up there in Bangalore, a this was the gateway. So let’s say I spent 14 months posting it Neopia works in India first, then I moved to Addis Ababa, working with the dying people with the HIV. I was living in the Madras mission Mother, Mother Teresa, Missionaries of Charity in Addis Ababa.
Alex Sternick 05:15
But also I went to volunteer as a nutritionist, we saved the children who is a, and having a very good letter recommendation letter from their HR department. It didn’t help me invent to get a position as a nutrition supervisor in one of other organizations. So I understood that my purpose should be to promote laughter or happiness, because I’m coming from a very traumatic background. And I wanted some antidote to that. Yeah, I wanted something healthy. Because I’ve never seen health in my life. In my house, it was just opposite unhealed and traumatic, very complex of traumas. And for me, laughter yoga was the first theme for me, which really a little bit elicited my spirit. And it also worked out for me for some years. So I went back to laughter to love to yoga in Ethiopia when I couldn’t be accepted in any job at job and was doing with this HIV dying people in Madras mission until I realized that I need to go back to Israel, and I cannot stay forever in in Ethiopia. So I went back to Israel and started a the first laughter club in Jerusalem the time with another a German lady who promoted laughter yoga, and now we were a team, not only one person doing that we were two. She had her laughter club in Tel Aviv, I had mine which was in front of the Israeli parliament in Jerusalem. And in the beginning was very great. And I really liked it and I very fast I was already given different public seminars in different institutions and you know, I was fed and cetera. But then, after Kataria came to Israel, and you know, it was like a big peak, I realized that something here is not really precise for me and I understood that laughter was not enough like laughter yoga. A I develop this gibberish thinks that time already was the preparing that because I actually heard about that, surprisingly, in the book of Madani Kataria. He was mentioning a small paragraph about gibberish. And when I read it, I say to myself, this is more interesting to me this part. So I started to dig information in the internet about gibberish exercises and I found some resources and I composed my own gibberish workshops 2005 Six like that. My next step was to be trained by Dr. Goodhart and a good heart. Which really, I think she was the reason for me to understand that physical aerobic laughter is only a gateway. Yeah, it I think it was her course, which really opened me to go deeper. And she was actually quoting Charlie Chaplin. We took the train in Copenhagen in Denmark, I think it was two or three years before she passed away in 2007. And she was telling us the chaplains say that to truly love, one should be able to take his pain and play with it. And all her course was about how we can play with our pain, how we can play with our anger, how can play with our misery, and when we can play and surrender to accept that then we can move into laughter she never neglected laughter but she say that all idea of faking laughter forever, may not work for some people. Those who never came in terms of face with the non-convenient parts with the discomfortable parts. She said it will not work, but that and then I only understood it intellectually because I was not really I was still doing only laughter yoga, Alex is laughter yoga, and maybe gibberish, but I was still not made sure to leave it at all. But my encounter with Annette was very significant. And you know, something, I never told it in interviews, but I came to her training three days after my friend suicided
Alex Sternick 09:41
and I was very in my agony and Annette so that I was the only one who was like in the air. I mean, I was understanding everything, but it was hard for me to speak about that. Other people were revealing their things, you know, and then she didn’t accept me for the next year to come for the second stage. He said, because you were not with us. I said her. You’re right. I was in my agony. But then I really understood how much is important not to try to cover up your pain. Are you in Saudi citizen reader fully exaggerate, intensify, and she was right, then and then if we go, two years later, when I was in Ethiopia in 2004, I heard about the word after champion that Robin also was helping him a lot and promoting his board. I heard about him from some local people and I met him very in Addis, and was fascinated by his lives, his life story of how he came to this laughter, and how he changed his life. And he, you know, he passed through many, many disasters in his life. He combined some dis positivism, positive psychology laughed. And also, of course, he was a little bit more Christian than the others, but in a way he could, like recover his life, his health, even, he said that he was cured from HIV. I was inspired by his indigenous laughter, indigenous laughter like natural, spontaneous real. I decided to bring him over to Israel. So, people can also see that there is a person who is not faking laughter, but really laughing from the guts. So, it was like a big project. And it was very successful a tour of a Bella chew here in Israel in 2009. So, and I always try to, you know, to take more courses to know more people who, who can be a simple proof that cure is possible. Healing is possible. We don’t need to be dependent on with authorities too much, or other, you know, medical experts who are telling us what to do. Yeah, and sometimes we do something which we actually make damage for ourselves. So every few years, I was taking a class or bringing someone to Israel, to learn more skills. And and I think with Bellator, it was like, great, like, incredible. And then 2000, I also started to teach in Europe, my gibberish workshops, that also they were quite technical in the beginning the end, after 2014 /13 It went much deeper. So yeah,
Pete Cann 12:33
Amazing. So, so you are obviously evolving?
Alex Sternick 12:35
Pete Cann 12:37
yeah. Well, we all are, aren’t we grow as we, you know, as we learn, and we meet new people have ideas. And so, you know, I’ve read a net good arts book, and, and I found it really, really interesting myself. And I’ve seen a few videos of her in action. And I mean, how was, you know, I mean, you mentioned that she didn’t allow you to come the second time. But did she understand? Did you go a second time in the end? Or you? How did that conversation?
Alex Sternick 13:09
What happened? In the beginning, I was very, very disappointed that she told me don’t come again to Copenhagen. Until you you’re going to do it at this stage one gain in fairies. And then I just gave up the idea because I clearly understood the concept of her work. Because for me, her book was the Bible. My not book from the course was the Bible. I was practicing her technique. So, I said, maybe I don’t need the proof for proof from hair. But then, I think two years later, anyway, no, no one could accomplish this three years scores because she passed away. I mean, I share their cancer and has disappeared shortly and but I kept on practicing the things which she has been teaching us how to work with a person one to one and helping him or her to, to play to play with to laugh or to cry about things or to get any other aspect of catharsis, not by neglecting the current emotional situation, but to surrendering into playing with it voluntarily.
Alex Sternick 14:34
From Annette Goodheart I came to know Dr. Tietze mohltc, who is a psychotherapist based in Brooklyn, Gallic Constance, Germany, a founder of the therapeutic clowns Association in Austria and Germany that they were doing working more in the field of mental health Through clowning, this role was more fascinating to me, because my mother’s schizophrenia and all the illnesses she had. And I just when I connected with him and told him about my work for gibberish and nonsense, he immediately sent me his own articles about humor drama, about how he was incorporating different nonlinear wisdom on a false based intervention inside, say, psychiatric institutions or in his clinic. And I was amazed to read that I said, this should be incorporated into my work. And together with that, a different spiritual philosophy, not philosophy, but teachings that I have been doing since also 2013 2012 2012. About it’s a Jew at Jewish method, where we you lead where you learn how to separate your emotional overload, if you have a if you have, if you pass through any emotional overload, you learn how to separate free components, how to separate the emotions, how to separate it from the welding mind, or the turbulent mind, which is always not essential, not true, alive, one alive thing, how to separate from the body sensations, and how to ride the egg. First of all, a perception of giving to yourself. And if you do it is through writing. And one very major principle there is accept yourself as someone who makes mistakes or accept yourself as someone who is incomplete. But accept, don’t judge this one inside you don’t. Even we know the anger is making the damage, don’t judge the anger within you. But rather the aid compassion towards him and acceptance. So I could integrate this Das teachings and what I was a learning from human drama and then applied it, I saw this is the same thing. Because the linear thing is that we want to cover up or we want to fight our depression or to fight out anger and then cover it up with a stimulated laughter. And for many of us, the stimulated laughter is not becoming genuine. In the end, it works like a like a pirate sector mole, like a pill. You can feel it better for two hours. And then later on, you go back to your negativistic perception. But what will happen if we do what Annette said or what teets is saying that let’s accept, let’s exaggerate, Let’s surrender, but do it we will when we do it, in our willful control voluntarily we become the captains of the situation, it doesn’t control us. And this is this is a trick actually; this is a trick because then we actually start to laugh. This is laughter. Because I know I have this sadness. I know I have this anger. But now I accept, I allow myself at my willful control voluntarily to be angry, to express it to give it the full room. And then it’s little by little losing the power upon me, it’s not possessing me. The same is true in homeopathy medicine, treat the same as the same, you’ll give the poison in a diluted quantity, then it will trigger the symptoms and then curing or healing will be the consequence. Little by little, same idea. We call it trick. The same is the same trick, the same is the same. So, it’s like another way to come into happiness and joy. But without doing it forcefully. You know? You’re resting? Yeah, completely. You don’t leave me our
Pete Cann 19:07
Hi, it’s Pete here and I hope you’re enjoying the show. I have a little favor to ask if you aren’t enjoying this episode, then why not press that share button and help spread the power of laughter with your network. Anyway, on with the episode. Alex, I want to just rewind back a bit, but you know, you’ve mentioned a couple of times about a traumatic youth in childhood. I mean, would you be happy to sort of share some of the similar the emotions and the feelings that you released when you first discovered laughter as I never before we rewinding right back I suppose to when you were in Bangalore, and you know how because, okay, I remember the first time I did a laughter yoga session. And after the meditation just feeling just light and like, I didn’t realize I had this tension around me and just so I suppose touching base and you know the some of your childhood and how you did you feel a shift when you when you did the laughter yoga initially?
Alex Sternick 20:16
Of course, yes, of course I for me it was I was feeling that I never was happier. In my childhood as I was happy with laughter yoga. And it was not only because of the technique, but it was also because the community of the laughter yoga people in India, the local people, they like adopted me. And they, they’re some of them were teaching me the exercises and gay, like, wanted to meet me, maybe because I was a foreigner as you know, in India, I for me is considered to be a God, if you know that. But for me, it was I really felt Wow, those people really want to be next to me. And they were so happy that I was waking up and coming in at six 6am to laugh with them every morning. Were a you know, in India, it’s not like, like they do 45 minutes of full blast laughter but they were doing a lot of stretching and different Pranayama’s a little bit laughing haha, but it was still they call themselves laughter club. And when I started that, and especially when myself as a person who was also very submissive, I was not an assertive child, I was beaten by kids, by children, even in the army was very submissive. And first time in Bangalore, I was going to an HIV Foundation, where people were dying, they were in stage, and I was doing laughter exercises with the dying people in their on their beds. And it gave me a lot of power, a lot of happiness and satisfaction. And I can tell you that that time, I really needed that, to overcome the mental level I was. And for a few years, not only in India, or in Ethiopia, also in Israel in the first years. This was this was my own mission. To do that. I was very committed to our weekly laughter club, to doing marketing, working between in a in a different piece-oriented festivals in Israel between Arabs and Israeli Arabs and Palestinians and Jews, Jews, when I was going to an interfaith encounter in Israel at the time, it was quite popular to give laughter yoga, I call it laughter yoga, and I was really feeling good with that. You know, I did, I went to Europe to train with Kataria as a teacher 2005 And to meet people all over the world. You know, I’m still hosting people for couch surfing. It my whole because I’m enjoying this cosmopolitan encounter. It’s so important we have to bridge a bridge beyond the on the bridge the gaps, we have that and gaps, a bridge their differences, which are imposed by the religion by the nationality and political views. And when we eat together when we laugh together, when we sink together, it’s burned bridges, the gaps you see something nonlinear something. It’s not an SRE not intellectual. It’s not intellectual, you know, to people, when they meet they stop to be enemies, they are considered to be enemies. That’s true between two people. Yeah. And laughter can be a very good how to say this peace promoter. A bilateral was calling it a diplomatic passkey. That was words. And it worked in gibberish as well. It’s yeah, it’s a language which unites people of course, the gibberish Yeah, we actually agree, we accept and agree not to understand the reason for things to happen for us not to ask for us. So, so it really served me. But then I could keep neglect my own pain, which was not giving the full room. And when I decided to give it the full room and to face it courageously,
Alex Sternick 24:37
Then I could be much happier. And I did that. Otherwise, you know, it wouldn’t help me anymore because and I know many people who do laughter yoga and they are unhappy. Also, teachers, big teachers, because you must face your dark side at will. Now there are various techniques how to do that. At a lot, but in the end, we are talking about the concept, which is called hormesis, which means a voluntary exposure to a discomfort at your will. And when you do that, you expose yourself to this discomfort but at your will. So, it becomes you the enemy becomes your best ally. That’s very basic, very easy. Yeah. And it works. Yeah. And it works.
Pete Cann 25:28
And if this is something that you teach people to do,
Alex Sternick 25:32
yeah, I always focus on that. There are various techniques, humor drama, what we do in courses, it’s one way my work with the ice water immersion is another way. Again, bypassing intellect there is no need to talk about the things to talk about. It’s not necessary. It can open different wounds. It’s better to work by passing by passing the intellect and very, very important especially now is the Coronavirus with this pandemic and with this biggest virus of fear that we have been all imposed and you asked me your first question before the recording how is Israel and Israel is still in a very big post traveler from this Corona but we also have been in post trauma before because of the insecurity and the economic crisis rice of the prices which is a you know, I don’t have kids but families in Israel it’s really difficult for many of them to justify their existence even to add to that to the Coronavirus now the warring the Eastern Bloc so, so especially now we need to learn how to because what is a trauma it’s there is a distraction in the brain more in the morphology of the brain, you can see it and CT scattered and on MRI there says there is some gray matter or something in the neurotransmitters is fogged up is destroyed. So, there are techniques we which do not ever gymnastics, brand rewiring this is important for happiness. And when you do that then one by one byproduct will be the two hour also you can laugh more you can express joy more you can dance with but first of all you should learn how to to rewire your brain the pathways neurotransmitters should be built up again and the beautiful thing is that our brain our brain is not it’s not a has a neuroplasticity a character is in any age you can repair it you can repair it in any age. And there are this what I like about the work of Wim Hof that he brought this this to the world so everybody in any age can learn how to recuperate his brain how to bring more oxygen Yeah, we know from laughter yoga that lack of oxygen is a get to stress. So, we want to bring more oxygen to the tissues to the to the to the blood to the brain to the bone marrow we want to move from acidic environment to more alkaline environment. Okay, this is important, and we want to learn how to produce serotonin. Dopamine does have the most important hormones, because when you have enough serotonin and you have enough dopamine, you can do whatever, despite the circumstances. Despite it that’s why it works. It works. It’s
Pete Cann 28:50
easy as it does I mentioned you mentioned Wim Hof. Yes, actually last week. Okay, so in the UK right now there’s a documentary with Wim Hof. In London real Yeah, yeah, yeah, it’s there in there is no way they’re doing the whole thing. And I last week, I started listening to his book. Great. I’ve been aware of Wim for some time now. I’ve started the cold showers. I’ve started this Oh, yeah. So it’s a start. It’s great. Yeah, but I
Alex Sternick 29:26
Daniel, cold showers are more difficult than the ice water.
Pete Cann 29:31
I can imagine. Yeah, you got it with the I suppose the submerge you just like you’re in and then this is it. So, I feel there is definitely some connection between his theory theories and laughter theory and the whole thing and it’s all about the breath really, I think is
Alex Sternick 29:56
all about the breath. This is so simple, and I think Dr. Kataria was mentioning about the say it was a medical doctor who won a Nobel Prize in medicine and about forgot his name about the importance of oxygen. So when you have in I forgot the name when you have enough oxygen in the body you cannot get cancer and that’s true. That’s true when you have enough oxygen it means your environment is alkaline, not acidic. Now we people, people where they do have the deadly smoked tobacco, they drink a lot of coffee and stress is external stress acidity, too much acidity. immune system is weakened is depressed of course illnesses can come but when we when we breathe, and we breathe deeply and deeply and deep when we have bigger saturation of oxygen, we wow we feel the serotonin we feel is you know a dopamine it’s a hormone connected with achievement. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Sportsmen they have a lot of dopamine and when you do you have that, so you don’t care about there is Coronavirus there is a crisis. Firstly, I want to dedicate and devote to myself if I am good balanced tubulous, I can do whatever Of course I can laugh more. I can laugh or I can improvise more in my life. I can be more fluent like a child fluid fluent flexible. This is very important. We want in the end to go back to the to the positive patterns of child childishness childhood childlike playfulness. Let’s intellect. Okay, yeah. So, this will need more serotonin then we can also laugh more, you know? Yeah.
Pete Cann 31:48
So you mentioned childlike play, which again is, you know, something to do with laughter Yeah, it’s mentioned in laughter yoga is a big thing. And then gibberish you know, so I want Alex we probably got about 510 minutes left so I want to I know I know it’s hard I know it’s hard Oh however, what I would like you to do is let’s just talk about gibberish let’s talk about how you know how you believe gibberish works for the brain the mind the body. I’ve been interested in hearing your
Alex Sternick 32:28
So first of all, I people think that gibberish it’s only about talking in gibberish, which is not we use. We use this language as a basic for different improvisational exercises improv. Why we need improv, we need improv because we want to be more flexible to when we meet it tsunami. When we meet an unexpected event, which we cannot predict it we will be more flexible, how to cope with it tsunami with a surprise. You cannot cope with a tsunami when you’re always in this planning mindset and linear and try to force the reality and the external world to behave according to your logic. You can’t because the external world is a theater of absurd it’s a gibberish the actor cafe. I say sometimes, and the only thing applies in reality is anything goes, and we have seen that very clearly. With the corona. Anything goes it means anything can happen. Gibberish is a very technical, linguistic theatrical technique, which helps you to accept the fact that you can do whatever you can say whatever you don’t need to plan ahead what to say the only thing you should accept now there are many people who are very hard on being silly or looking at themselves as silly or behaving in a in a in a childish, foolish way. So, they always tried to do the gibberish very fast and not even to to wait and to stay around the word. A simple word but imitate the builder and they speak gibberish but there is no gibberish because they are still it’s hard for them to sit within the fire. Yeah, they want to extinguish the fire. And this is our problem that we never we always act out of emergency we are introduced as far as extinguishment doesn’t work out. And I teaching people through this technique to do things slowly. Not too hard not to hurry up to the climax but you are Enjoy the process. So, if I’m teaching people to speak slowly, like defrag cipec Key, they’re in the process they can like if we could media severity food co I take all the time to be there with each word. And from here I want to teach people that when they wake up in the morning, first of all before there they are, hurry up to the day that you must, you need to you have to do things that will dedicate they will do some ceremony for themselves, you know, devotion and dedication of what is called bhakti. In Indian philosophy, it’s so, so important. And through the gibberish, I am learning I teach people that also when they speak gibberish, they can do it slowly, take all the time you need because there is so much time within the time. And then also that the gibberish sounds more genuine. Because nobody else can guess it is gibberish, it becomes a real language. But you don’t hurry up, it is quite hard to to teach. But what about when you do think slowly, not from a hiring up mindset, you are less in stress. And you can do things more precisely. So this is one thing I’m teaching. But I really want to help people to see that to see the world is something nonlinear.
Alex Sternick 36:26
not logical, and we have only one choice is to agree to agree to the fact that we cannot understand why things do happen. But on the same at the same time to agree on one thing, which is also nonlinear, is that the pro everything which is happening by the external environment, by the reality by the word, the Providence wants our favor, it doesn’t want to damage us the Providence or God, whatever. And we need to accept all things which are happening for us not to us, for our benefit. It’s a lesson for us to to grow up. Now, we cannot understand the why it’s not important to just to agree to accept that we don’t understand why things do happen. And to see later on it will be revealed what we can learn from that. And this this comes together with the philosophy of nonsensical gibberish that things are just happening. They happen for a reason that we cannot understand the reason. But it happens for some, not some not human reason, I don’t know, big reason that we cannot grasp is our small intellectual mind. So this is also something which I’m teaching people through the training. And when we do it first, technically, when we do this gibberish exercises, different exercises, and we are great to speak in non-intelligible dialect. Little by little, we do some brain rewiring and we turn the patterns in the brain. Okay. And we more go on this spirit of improvisation, and lots of planning mathematical mind, because you cannot force the word to behave as scientific. I have to tell you a beautiful story of an Arab Israeli lady who had a cancer in her leg. And the doctor wanted to amputate the leg. It was in the CT scan. But then a comedy we call it the comedy of mistakes happened. And they call her from hospital. Now this lady was a teacher for biology. She was not any spiritual person to match, like doing meditation was not normal teacher, and the caller from hospital and they say we have emergent others such as we cannot accept you now. Coming to two weeks for amputation. She agreed. And then at then second time they call her, and they said again, we have other cases to operate. We cannot operate your leg come in another few weeks. And then it just it was a postponement. You said it was a postponement of the emergent emergency reaction. And then her mother became ill. And she said I need to be with my mother now and to take care of hair. So, I’m going to call to the doctor to say that I’m not coming for the third appointment. And during that time, this few month lasted. She felt she was praying, and she was mad. She started to meditate you she felt that everything is fine. And then she came to the doctor to do ecologist in random hospitals in Haifa, not far from my home. And she told him please check my life. Back to the MRI. And the doctor made the MRI and he couldn’t believe
Alex Sternick 40:07
he compared this MRI with the last MRI with the cancer. It was two different things he couldn’t see traces of the tumor. And this episode ends in it is doctor was very humbled because rarely you find specially people do do oncology that are so humbled. And this doctor said, the family invited him to and his wife to their village, the Druze village near Haifa. And this oncologist deceived, he was a surgeon he was amputating legs is when he said something incredibly said in our hospitals, we’re dealing with scientific facts. But the last thing which can be scientific is a human being. And it was beautiful. He said, I cannot understand but what happened? I don’t have the answer, but it was a full healing. And things sometimes happen. We cannot understand you cannot explain but it happened. Yeah, the human is not scientific science is based on calculation and planning and mathematics and statistics. But real life is absurdly study. See what happened is the corona now against the logic. And this what I want people to take out also these from these courses, that we should accept the fact that things are illogical. And what is left is to laugh about it. It’s definitely not the fight, it won’t work. It didn’t help me to fight. I was very good at fighting things, you know.
Pete Cann 41:45
Alex Sternick 41:51
I tried to cover up to fight to hide didn’t help me one day I said yes, I want to meet, I want to meet my vulnerabilities. I want to face them. And I had a lot of things which prevented me to empower more, I want to meet it face to face it and to play it into all need. And that just disappeared. So amazing.
Pete Cann 42:13
So that’s non-VR. Yes, yes. So Alex, I’m going to wrap things up a little bit now. So where can people find out more about you, Alex?
Alex Sternick 42:30
So you can post all this information is different links, my Facebook page, a business page and my YouTube channel. People can read more. There are two beautiful articles of mine that have been published by the positive psychology news today also can republish,
Pete Cann 42:47
yeah, perfect. Perfect. So, I’ll put all that in the show notes. So
Alex Sternick 42:51
yeah, well, we are going to have some master classes soon. I want to say the next one is in a hopefully in Barcelona and Catalonia in two weeks, and then followed in a gestalt Institute in Athens, Greece, made of June and then July is beginning of July and middle of July will be Austria and followed by France, south of France, for those who want to drink some bread, some Bordeaux, ye.
Pete Cann 43:20
I love that. I love that.
Alex Sternick 43:22
I want to end up with a quote of my teacher, Keith Johnstone. I think we mentioned him a little bit. And this is also something about passing from a linear mindset, which is based on comfort, cozy and warm to the nonlinear which is about improvisation and laughter. And he said something like that. It’s very strongly said, there are people who prefer to say yes. And there are people who prefer to say no, the people who prefer to say yes, they are awarded, by the adventures they get. And the people who say no, they are awarded by the safety they are attained. And this is my message here. His message. Very important to say yes, I think so. And only wait and see what happens. And love is God play along the way.
Pete Cann 44:18
So Alex, final thought then what three things bring you joy?
Alex Sternick 44:26
Well, acceptance brings me joy. Meeting new people. A stranger is a friend that you have not met yet. Traveling brings me joy, and they are much more fantastic. Emotions change emotions. Remember very important move.
Pete Cann 44:45
Move from 100% Keep on moving. Alex, it’s been a pleasure talking to you. Thank you. So
Alex Sternick 44:50
it was a pleasure. Pleasure. Namaste, man. The steak be so much.
Pete Cann 44:55
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