Leader

Me wearing my glasses

Me wearing my glasses

Me and my horse.  She was a little afraid of the water that chases you.

Me and my horse. She was a little afraid of the water that chases you.

About Me

What a long, strange journey it has been.  How to organize this?   I was born in July, 1952.

My connection to the twenties life stage is strong.  Why?  Not entirely sure, but it’s something about how in this period of life you will either set up structures for your life that will allow you to move and change or…you will settle.  If you settle, it’s hard to get unsettled later.

I’ve always had a talent for finding great teachers and teachings.  I feel like I had best of breed teachers in a number of areas.

Intellectual

I have an MA from UCLA (1980) in Film/TV History, Theory and Criticism – one particularly brilliant professor is now the dean there.  Along about 1984, I realized how unlikely it was that I would earn a living in film or TV and I didn’t want to be an academic.  I went back to UCLA and earned an MBA in 1985.  More recently I became fascinated with the philosophy of Ken Wilber and enrolled in a third Masters program at JFKU, one of two such programs “blessed” by Wilber.

Politics and Social Change

I’m trying to remember what I once called myself: a Marxist, Lesbian-feminist, secular Zionist…jeez, I can’t even remember the noun that went with all those adjectives!  I grew up in a secular Jewish household with very liberal values.  I participated in the anti-war movement in the 60s (although I don’t think I really understood it deeply at the time – it was more that all the cool people and people I respected were doing it).  I did lots of feminist, Lesbian-feminist and combating anti-Semitism activist stuff.

Relationships and Sexuality

I came out as a Lesbian in the feminist 1970s but I went a little bit “back in” in the 1980s when I began to connect with much younger men.  I consider myself an up-the-middle bisexual and find the middle of the gender continuum to be most invigorating.  I’ve never had an extended monogamous partnership (the longest was about 3 years off and on) but that doesn’t prevent me from having lots of opinions about relationships (!)   I feel lucky to have had a very positive sexual history and I was happy to study and learn a lot about sexual response and physiology – mostly women’s – but I think the true complexity of men’s sexuality and response is probably underappreciated.   When I did stand up comedy for about a minute my joke was that after everything I’d been through my parents were happy if I was just involved with someone of my own species.

Creative

I was an aspiring screenwriter back in the 80s and even earned entry into the Writers Guild of America.  I had a great impoverished twenties job: reading books and screenplays for producers.  I worked for Jane Fonda and for Sally Field briefly (both of whom I liked although since I didn’t have a lot of contact I didn’t see their tough sides – particularly Jane.)   Recently, I’ve taken up abstract painting.  Having had my first “career” in mainstream show biz, I know what it takes to earn your living as an artist.  Not for the faint of heart.  (Small joke: old guy is complaining about being the janitor in the circus parade and cleaning up after the elephants.  “This job is just awful.  Horse poop is horrible enough but can you imagine elephant poop?  It’s gigantic.  It’s an awful job.  Just terrible.”  “Well, why don’t you quit?”  “What?  And leave show business?”)

Physical

Took a lot of dance back in the day – mostly jazz with heavy ballet technique.  I studied with a teacher who worked with the Paris Opera Ballet (who, probably not coincidentally is/was a shaman and my first spiritual teacher.)  I was a pretty committed amateur dancer given that I don’t have an easy body-type for dance – I had to hang in there amongst the ballerinas.  The other major commitment was to Shotokan Karate in which I trained for a few years to brown belt level – for a time with a master who had already been a 7th degree black belt for 20 years when I met him.  Sweet, funny guy.  I’ve also done tons of aerobics, some weight training, considerable swimming, rowing, yoga and walking.  I found my soul mate horse a couple of years ago and she’s trying to teach me to ride.

Work Life

I’m kinda on my third career (or so).  Was a wannabe screenwriter (see “Creative” above) and made a little bit of money “covering” screenplays and books – synopsizing them.  I learned a LOT of story structure (to say the least) and a LOT about what it takes to be a professional writer.  Meeting my spiritual teacher and getting REALLY tired of trying to enter a profession where I wanted them way more than they wanted me all came together in the early 80’s and I decided to go back to school, get an MBA and do computer stuff.  From the mid-80’s until recently I have been a consultant in the computer industry – specifically doing database design and information management for large corporations.  I learned about corporate life, how to make money and how to spend well, save and invest.  While I was still a consultant, I started working on my current career doing financial planning and tax.  This twenties workshop is my real passion and life purpose.  I’m committed to finding a way to make it both great value for all of you and somewhat supportive for me.

Self-reflection

I grew up in a therapy milieu – lots of my family’s friends were therapists.  I have been in therapy on and off throughout my entire life.  I began doing peer to peer therapy when I was only about 14 years old, having been taught by the Laura Huxley, the widow of Aldous Huxley of Brave New World and LSD experimentation fame.  Self-delusion is a tricky thing but I can promise you that I’ll be honest about the weaknesses in myself of which I’m aware and that I’ll be aware of as many as I can.

Self-discovery

Crushes on teachers have probably defined my life.  I met my divide-my-life-in-half teacher, Rama – Dr. Frederick Lenz – in 1981 and considered myself his student until he died in 1998.  He was accused of being a cult leader.  I thought a lot about the anti-cult movement and I still think it is pretty nuts.  I was teaching meditation classes during that period and I even got written up in a college newspaper for “brainwashing” my meditation students.  Please.  The Twenties Workshop is a culmination of everything I’ve learned in my life, but lots of it I learned from Rama.  Sitting in meditation with him certainly took thousands and thousands of people into some quite radical states of consciousness.
June 2009 salmon shirt head small file

2 responses

26 07 2009
madbluewings

What an inspiring, marvelous bio!

24 03 2010
Joanne

Rebecca,
Great stuff! Wishing you tremendouse impact in our world. So nice to have you show up in my ‘technology doorway’.

Love and hugs,
J

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