Humans are a lot like ants. We have a certain unique, advancement-interested brain and upper body strength that enables us to succeed in unimaginably heavy chores but weíre not the biggest kid on the block. An ant can carry a grain of corn (to us the size of a Harley) and walk a distance (that to us would be l00 miles) without getting a paycheck. A human can only move his entire household in a day with a rented truck. He can only open a cafe, buy produce in the morning, cook it all day and wash dishes all night if forty thousand a month is out there to be earned. Except for carrying the Harley, little is beyond a human if he's motivated.

The average man or woman has a spectacular amount of surplus power in him, the ability to do amazing feats, create spectacular effects, initiate great projects and change situations via a single idea, mutating a vacant spot in the air to the biggest, most productive factory in the world, or the most popular restaurant.

Imagine how much ability you have in your brain, body, hands. Do you truly realize and value how much you can create any given effect in your life? The simple mechanics of this magic are that you accomplish these daily miracles by having a desire, figuring out what list of chores needs doing, then doing them, thusly creating the CAUSES that will get that effect, and you continue to create that cause that stimulus, that activity until a birth occurs, a desired change or effect occurs.

Very focused people can create change or create effect quicker than others. Brilliant, focused people not only do it with bigger, more audacious projects, but their smarts also enable them to create the effect quickly. Noisy, self-assertive, brilliant, focused people not only pick the super most audacious realities, (usually the 'hot occupations' like being a movie star, race car driver or rock singer.) By sheer comet energy, they burst upon the scene. So many egotists get into power. The Entertainment section has new ones every single day of the week. They roll around making efforts, get noticed, rise and often they fade quickly. Some, like Madonna, don't fade at all.

For most of us good, gentle folk, getting an effect requires repeated effort and a certain toleration of failure. As it's unpleasant, rigorous, even hard to focus again and again in the face of failure, many of us stop trying.

For that reason, sometimes we don't achieve our final effect but it is generally acknowledged that if the plan is good and a person continues to ply a certain creative activity, generally he will get an effect sooner or later. The universe seems to reward the repeated struggle and help comes and the job gets done.

Now, what I'm getting to is this. Over the eons, humans have noted when they can get a group to work on the project; the effect is easily achieved. One person alone is limited. He gives up, he gets bored but with a group handy, another person spells him immediately and the work continues. The more people that come in, the more surely the project advances. The snowball effect kicks in. As the project rolls it gathers more mass, more people. More people equal more excitement, and when this group thrill syndrome kicks in, it is quite visible not only to participants in this group, but onlookers that people are having fun here, the work is rewarding, and more people join in. Then this extra high level of energy gets commented upon in wider circles, which attracts more and better people to the labor, more muscle, more bodies, more weight, more brains, more speed, more intent and more success.

Team effort really works. So here's what I'm getting to. I think I just got there, anyway.

What if you had a magic wand and could wave it and get any effect? NOW. What would you wish for? List ten things you might do. A.) Make a million. B.) Buy real estate. C.) Think of the next product the world needs that could make you into Bill Gates. D.) Eradicate world hunger.

If you kept making your list, sooner or later, you'd probably turn your attention to eradicating the chaos, sorrow and danger of modern, urban life. There are a lot of loose screws out there. In people. Sooner or later one of these subterranean nuts could rise up out of the machinery, throw a spoke and seriously affect your family, your children.

Lately, headlines tell us of plenty of ordinary good people who suddenly (not really, but seemingly, overnight) turn into schoolmate-shooters, post office marksmen, serial murderers, serial rapists, gang bangers, shooting up innocents, pedophiles on the loose, child killers and arsonists, drunk drivers plowing down a dozen people. Think TOTAL MENACE.

Wouldn't it be nice to get to that kind of nutcake early, before he or she turned into a witless menace and rescue him, thusly eradicating the increasing dangers of the big city?

You ask, what could you as one person do to change that?

Plenty. What if, as an example, you had been waiting at the bus stop, seated in the sun in Sacramento last month and started chatting with the Ukrainian, Soltys, two weeks before he shot and stabbed his family of six? Imagine you were chatting and this jobless despondent man suddenly starts talking about the unusual way he came to America.

A Christian Evangelical church group in Sacramento had been broadcasting sermons to the Ukraine. It did such a good job converting people across the world that 75,000 Russians moved to Sacramento to be near this church. One believer brought her jobless husband who'd always been an outsider. In his own country, the army noticed his mental dents and wouldn't let him be drafted. This didn't make him happy, he continued to have an attitude. Once in California, the Church caught wind of his sour attitude and wouldn't allow him in the front door. The wife advanced in it; he wasn't allowed in the door. That situation became like an open wound in that family.

If you'd met Soltys at the bus stop, heard this much and happened to be community oriented, you'd have known about a specific jobless fair (held often in big communities) where they had the Russian Free School New Immigrant Support, as well as the California, state-run Department of Rehabilitation phone numbers, (free training available). If you'd gotten his phone number and that night happened to go online and found the jobless fair, and called Soltys to give him those numbers, six people related to this sore thumb fellow, might be alive today.

Imagine if you belonged to a group that did nothing but seek nuts out. Imagine being sensitized to the aroma of craziness sufficiently that, in your average day, at work, at the park, at the bustop, you could detect, attract, find, chat with and get them the specific kind of help they required, either by working with them as an unobtrusive lay minister or lay listener. But imagine that you belonged to a secret club ---a team, a group of public mentors that with one E-mail could dredge up the names of the low cost or free mental clinics, the magic phone number of the Social Security Office which gives impaired people immediate access to a free doctor. No visit of any kind is required. The phone number that you dial, the information taken on the phone, starts the process of free mental health. Do you know that phone number?

Imagine a group that meets at the local park or church which preps lay listeners, teaches them such phone numbers and addresses of clinics and which offers free speakers, practicing psychologists who teach the ways a lay person can create trust, win affection, gain patient transference and thusly be safely able to prod the apple barrel and detect the rotten ones, and working as a kindly programmer, using the principles of affirmation, teach the good stuff to sociopaths who are carrying a heavy load of anger which they will feel better dumping.

Dr. Richard Alpert tells a story that he heard from a friend, a student who had been studying Martial arts in Japan when he found himself on a trolley full of people cowering as a drunk was yelling, abusing, muttering, grabbing hold of women. The student decided that God had put this horrific scene in front of him so he could start to use his flying fists to heroically achieve change. He set down his packages and took off his coat, about to stand up and do a knee kick when an old man sitting there leans over to the drunk and says 'ahh, I can see you've had some sake tonight. I like sake. I used to drink it with my wife, sit and watch the sunset. Do you drink it with your wife?" And the drunk frowns and starts muttering sadly about how he did once but he couldn't afford a doctor for his wife and she died. And how he's alone now and drinks his sake alone. And the drunk begins to weep so the old man goes and sits next to him.

Upshot was that the old man rode the streetcar to the drunk's street and the whole situation was defused.

A wise man saw a fight about to happen, a duality ready to explode on a public bus, and he created a harmonizing, third point. We can easily learn the effortless jujitsu method of peaceful, Ďthird point-creating' for any dualistic spat, and become the harmonizing interventionist for people caught in painful dualities.

If it interested you, you could start small. Next time there's a fight, step in gently. You could volunteer to be a relative's child's mentor. When two people are thrashing it out (your sister and her kid) you could become that third point to the triangle. Volunteer to be the mediator. Become a skilled de-fuser of any fight you see. Then, join a group or create one called Third Point. Its members would do nothing more than that, practice being a third viewpoint, out in the field. Later, they'd bring stories to the group to share, so the multiple events of single people become study material for all.

As you become extremely successful and are all cheered by the many stories brought to meetings, let it be known outside, publicly, with cards or newspaper stories, that your group members will volunteer a mentor for free to any parent suffering with an oddball loner kid, or any wife with an abusive drinking husband as most typically these are the people who never can afford to seek professional help, and end up with horror stories.

Carlos Castaneda once got his horoscope done by me. He told me, at that meeting, that children do not really learn from parents as they are way too defensive with all adults but especially their own parents. Kids are trapped in a power/ control/ blame/shame terrain with Mom and Pop and it is loaded with landmines. Carlos said that children will learn from someone who has no vested interest. He suggested that older folks be used, unrelated to the child, who just appear suddenly in the living room, lay teacher or lay mentor types. Just a simple grandpa from nowhere. This was Carlos Castaneda's advice. He said that parents should use someone else to make their kids wake UP as they would never be able to do it. Kids feel too protected when the parent's around. They comandeered that interaction years ago. They have it wired, under control. Kids need to be more vulnerable to truly learn to change the deeper things. The unique Castanea spin was that Mom should hire some frightening looking geezer, and have her kids taken to the City Morgue and the pediatric cancer ward to scare the pants off that kid and make him humble. His exact words.

I'd amplify that to include the hiring of nice old granny types who do lay listening, who create a dialogue, first with the child alone, then when the child accepts his weekly meetings with this granny from nowhere, the meetings open eventually to the mother and child and granny, finally to the father, as well, building trust slowly but surely.

You can start slowly. You don't even have to do this on your own. There are mentoring groups all over America that would welcome you to local MENTORING MEETINGS perfect for new people who want to learn the system, hear tips and be plugged into schools and children's centers and with the help of people who've been doing it a long time, get into lay mentoring. To do this, simply go to http://www.mentoring.org and find the group in your area code, there are many email addresses there, you can be doing this within three minutes if you want.

You might want to work with adults, and use tools. I've studied the Dr. Art Janov type methods involved in emotional release work and believe them to be very effect with adults. Dr. Janov's books are available at http://www.abebooks.com where used bookvendors lowball one another for your business.

Examine the EMOTIONAL FREEDOM 'touch assist' method, taught for free, with a free online manual at http://www.emofree.com/  a method that requires no licenses, no degrees. I heard about it from Dr. Mercola's holistic email list. He says the method is like no-needle acupuncture and cures fibromyalgia. At http://www.mercola.com/2001/dec/1/acupuncture.htm or just go to his website and meet this generous holistic teacher. It's a virtual encyclopaedia. http://www.mercola.com

As the Mentoring group grows in its snowball way, detecting sad people, mentoring, referring stressed people back to this miracle worker type organization's meetings, teaching the mentoring method to new, future mentors and attracting the trust of, hence being hired by low income parents to deal with this century's strange children so that eventually all mentors are paid a 'lay mentor' rate, members of this group could in fact change the destiny of many people on this planet.

Their services would be affordable to ordinary working people. The rich can afford the best psychiatrists and boarding schools and can throw endless money at the problem of getting the kinks out of family members. Poor people cannot. So mentoring fills a public need and invariably would attract grants and funding.

Now, whenever we choose to act, we ought to look at the obstacles that will be ahead of us that trip us up. Itís going to be something like this: Stuff you are passionately attracted to doing which tires you out. I call it the Ďhot fudge sundaeí activities. This could be eating in fine and costly cafes, travelling to costly cities so that you have to work 80 hrs a week for years afterwards, to pay the bills. Itís rolling around in a hypnotic mindless trance in someoneís arms and sheets for a few months or years, until sweet passion turns to bitter ash. Itís going shopping with false friends who make you spend too much money. (I donít count garage sales with true friends, although I should probably toss that in the waste basket. I know my daughter will throw out most of what I bought.) Last, itís movies, dime novels and concerts. All of it is so totally dispensable. It is! If you just think backwards over how youíve wasted the years til now, what you were wasting time with ---itís all that stuff. All those people, all that Jazz.

On the other hand, the hours you spend doing something like this will be filled with friendship with angels, miracles of the Gods, libation poured to the highest level of your mental cup, accomplished with other, amazing, worthy, exceptional people.

There is a vacant space in history waiting for such a mentoring group made up of insightful amateurs* like yourself.

And after a short time of seeing troubled teens, or whichever age group you specialize in, move on to doing emotional release techniques   that Dr.Art Janov wrote about. In a one-on-one setting, you can earn l00$ an hour in a modern city. Not in rural areas, but in the bigger cities. Explore the HEALING ARCHIVE, where at the bottom, many psychological careers one can pursue without a degree are covered. And visit the PSYCHOLOGICAL CAREER INDEX PAGE.

* Amateur, from old French, ammez, to do a thing for love of itself, not for money. Not, as popularly believed, referring to an untutored and nearly ignorant.