Green Belief

Being without fear ~ Belief modification for dissolving fears


  • Topics
    Workshops by Robert Chapman
    • Approaching Delusions [+]
      Workshop Presentation Titles

      Workshops are 90 minutes in length.

      Approaching Delusions

      -Assessing Readiness to Recognize, Disclose and Modify Paranoid Delusions

      • Adapted assessment tool (Boston U.) legal correspondence
      • Assessment Objectives, Definitions
      • Psychosocial Rehabilitation Principles Related to Assessing Readiness
      • Barriers/Benefits to Dissolving Paranoid Beliefs
      • Choosing What To Believe ─ Assessing Awareness of Choices and Readiness to Choose In the Intent to Modify Delusions
      • Personal Data Inventory / Health History (2 pgs.) / Consent Form
      • Questionnaire on Delusion Experience / Delusion Experience Awareness
      • Tolerability
      • Validating Commitment
      • Level of Doubt / Alternative Explanations
      • Developing Readiness / Critical Cognitive Skills

      1) Readiness to accommodate evidence and alternative explanations contradictory to false beliefs (a psychiatric technology model) 2) Psychosocial Rehabilitation Principles are related. Readiness to approach fearful beliefs precedes steps to modifying them. It has been the presenter's experience (three years as a monthly speaker at Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital's Patient Education Group) that consumers have disclosed to him for the first time their paranoid beliefs. This may occur because Chapman, a past-consumer, provides heightened connecting skills–that is he brings a greater sense of believability and commonality than do other professionals. Chapman’s involvement (reported by staff) has been responsible for a decrease in both consumer guardedness and the conviction/obtrusiveness of their delusions.

      By adapting the use of the "Rehabilitation Readiness" assessment (Cohen, Psychiatric Rehabilitation Technology1), the objective in this assessment is to explore the validity and benefit of assessing a consumer's readiness and need to disclose and recognize existing delusions.

      The benefits of diminishing/eliminating the impact of paranoid delusions, and barriers to recognizing and eliminating delusions are discussed. Choosing what to believe ─ assessing awareness of choices and readiness to choose in the intent to modify delusions will be addressed.

      1Adapted from Cohen, M., Farkas, M., Forbess, R. and Cohen, B. (1992). Psychiatric rehabilitation training technology, Rehabilitation readiness. Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, Boston University, MA with written legal permission.
    • Belief Modification for Eliminating Paranoid Beliefs
      - Part 1 [+]
      • What Is Belief Modification and CT, Its Use
      • History, Medication Use
      • Definitions / Delusion Prevalence
      • Delusion of Persecution

      Delusion Scenarios:
      • Thought Broadcasting
      • Thought Influence
      • Thought Insertion
      • Thought Withdrawal; Mind-reading
      • Somatic Delusion
      • Grandiose Delusion
      • Source of Hallucinations
      Delusion Attribution Style
      Telepathy-Like Delusions

      An innovative delusion elimination approach is presented. Counter-arguments and disconfirming evidence are explored for the purpose of eliminating and replacing paranoid telepathy-like delusions. Counter-arguments and disconfirming evidence against the concept of thought transference and mind-reading ideas is key to modifying delusions.

      Alternative interpretations and explanations are explored. A 3-step strategy is explained to identifying/recognize, counter-argue, and replace fearful false beliefs. “World-end” anxiety (apocalyptic fears) may also be discussed. Belief Modification and Cognitive Therapy are defined and their application is discussed. Delusion, reality, and belief are defined.

      Delusions of influence and control scenarios explored: thought broadcasting, thought transmission, thought insertion, thought withdrawal, and somatic delusions. Delusion prevalence, delusion attribution style, and telepathy-like delusions will be discussed.
    • Belief Modification for Eliminating Paranoid Beliefs
      - Part 2 [+]
      • Belief Modification Applied
      • Recognizing Doubt (Validity)
      • How Questioning (investigative inquiry)

      • Misinterpretation ─ Delusion of Reference
      • Misinterpreting Behaviour
      • Misinterpreting Conversation
      • Misinterpreting Happenstance

      • Exploring Alternative Explanations and Interpretations
      • Developing Counter-Arguments/Demonstrations and Disconfirming Evidence
      • Replacing Delusions
      • Explaining Delusions

      Delusions of reference scenarios are explored: misinterpreting behavior, misinterpreting conversation, and misinterpreting happenstance. The use of objective thinking, exercising an awareness of reality, and the role of medication in facilitating such a cognitive strategy is emphasized. Belief modification skills and thought restructuring (applied Cognitive Therapy) is explained. Grandiose delusions of self and ideas may also be discussed. Recognizing doubt regarding the validity and pervasiveness of delusions will be highlighted.

      Consumers develop an understanding of replacing delusions and learn how to explore alternative explanations and healthy alternative interpretations. Explaining how delusions may be formed is discussed. Based on the presenter’s book On Second Thought ─ Eliminating Paranoid Delusions.
    • Hallucinations [+]
      This talk about audible and visual hallucinations includes a discussion on:

      1. perceived external source of hallucinations, and hallucinations arising from self as source.
      2. The concept of mental telepathy compared with audible hallucinations.
      3. Hallucination or spiritual experience?
      4. Delusions reinforced by hallucinations.
    • Suicide [+]
      • My Experience
      • Suicidal Thoughts
      • Wanting to Live

      From the presenter’s book On Second Thought ─ Eliminating Paranoid Delusions.
    • Prevalence and Stigma of Mental Illnesses [+]

      Prevalence of Mental Illnesses

      • Ripple Effect
      • Cost of Mental Illness
      • Recovery Accounts
      • New Recovery Models

      Myths and Misconceptions About Mental Illnesses

      • Cause of Mental Illness
      • Interpretation/Recognition of Cognitive Symptoms Presented
      • Interpretation/Recognition of Behavioral Symptoms Presented
      • Treatment/Healing/Recovery
      • Medication Use
      • Other Common Myths About Mental Illness

      Mental Illness and the Faith Community and How to Reduce Stigma

      • Educating and Preparing the Faith Community About Mental Illness
      • The Stigma Associated With Mental Illness
      • Mental Illness Myth / Misconception Themes
      • Guiding Principles
      • Breaking the Silence: Creating Permission To Talk

      1) The high prevalence of mental illnesses. 2) Demystifying mental illness and dispelling myths and misconceptions about mental illness: cause of mental illness, interpretation/recognition of cognitive symptoms presented, interpretation/recognition of behavioral symptoms presented, treatment/healing/recovery, medication use. 3) Breaking the Silence: creating a sensitive environment in which there is permission to talk comfortably about mental illness 4) Increasing knowledge and understanding of mental illnesses. 5) The ripple effect and cost of mental illnesses. Recovery accounts and new recovery models are shared. Based on the presenter’s book Unnecessary Stigma.

      The purpose of educating the faith community about mental illness is to: 1) minister to people with a mental illness and their families 2) create a sensitive environment in which there is permission to talk comfortably about mental illness 3) increase knowledge and a balanced understanding of mental illnesses 4) extinguish perpetuating misconceptions about mental illness and unnecessary stigma found to be more prevalent in the faith community.

      The High Prevalence of Emotional and Mental Illnesses

      Per population worldwide, there is a high prevalence of mental illnesses. Eight of the top 10 leading causes of disability in the world are mental illnesses. Depression leads this list.

      16% of health care expenditures are attributed to psychiatric disorders while family doctors report 40% of visits are related to emotional issues, not physical ones.

      The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that 450 million people in 2001 have a mental or neurological disorder, and 1 in 4 people will suffer from a mental or neurological disorder in their lifetime.

      1 in 5 Canadians will be diagnosed with mental illness in their lifetime.

      Schizophrenia strikes one in 100 people (that’s twice the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease, five times the prevalence of multiple sclerosis, six times the prevalence of insulin-dependent diabetes, 15 times the prevalence of cystic fibrosis, and 60 times the prevalence of muscular dystrophy). There is also a high prevalence in other mental illnesses such as mood, anxiety, and panic disorders, e.g. 1 in 40 people are diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

      The prevalence of suicide, suicide attempts, and suicidal thinking is high. These statistics do not include people who do not have a diagnosis but are trying to cope with mental and emotional issues nonetheless.

      How Prevalent Is Paranoia?

      25% of people without a diagnosed mental illness experience paranoia to some degree. People who have severe forms of paranoid thoughts are those who are suffering from:
      • Depression
      • Schizophrenia
      • Psychosis
      • Post-traumatic stress disorder
      • World-end anxiety (apocalyptic fears)

      The surveys below are taken from: Paranoia ─ The 21st-Century Fear, D. Freeman and J. Freeman, 2008. pp. 9-10. (Excluded from these surveys are people with a history of mental illness.)

      “In a survey of 8,580 UK adults, 21 per cent said there had been times over the past year when they’d felt people were against them. 9 per cent said they had believed that their thoughts were being controlled or interfered with by some outside force or person. 1.5 per cent said there had been times when they’d felt people were plotting to cause them serious harm.

      “A study of 1,005 adults in New York found that 10.6 per cent believed other people were following or spying on them. 6.9 per cent thought people were plotting against them, or trying to poison them. 4.6 per cent believed people were either secretly testing them, or experimenting on them.

      “A French survey of 462 adults found that 25 per cent had, at some point in their lives, felt that they were being persecuted in some way. 10.4 per cent had sometimes believed there was a conspiracy against them.

      “Paranoia is so widespread that around 15 to 20 per cent of the population have frequent paranoid thoughts. Most of those people aren’t much troubled by their suspicious thoughts. But a further 3 to 5 per cent have severe paranoia (persecutory delusions). Around a quarter of us are having regular paranoid thoughts.”

      The “Ripple Effect” of Emotional and Mental Illness
      The “ripple effect” of emotional and mental problems affects everybody. All families and communities are affected due to this ripple effect.

    • Message Art [+]

      What Are You?

      - Being What You Are

      This workshop offers a fun and inspiring exercise to bolster positive thoughts with fun text art. These hand-printed messages about yourself, others and life help maintain hopeful beliefs, a healthy emotional state of being and mental outlook. Emphasis is given to positive emotions, virtuous qualities and meaningful values such as love, peace, joy, harmony and gratitude. These divine attributes of your God-Self with “I Am” statements are based on the presenter’s book What Are You? - Being What You Are. You may also reproduce your favourite sayings, treasured quotes, positive-affirmations and reminders on poster-sized papers.

      Message Art

      What kind of messages do you take in? Message art includes inspirational messages, healing words, favourite sayings and treasured quotes, self-affirmation reminders, life wisdom, mantras and blessings, values & virtues, emotional expressions of love, peace, joy, beauty. The application of these messages can be for study, reminder visual aids, personalized posters, home-made special occasion cards. You may categorize these expressions according to topic theme. Some themes may overlap others. For the sake of filing, use dividers. For example:
      • Being-ness: Consciousness/Experience/Okay-ness/”I Am” statements
      • Choice: Intention; Core Values; Opposites (duality); Unity/Oneness/Wholeness
      • Is-ness/Nowness Ego: Illusion Encouragement/Courage
      • Faith: Hope; Trust; Expectation; Believing; God/Life
      • Happiness/Joy
      • Gratitude: Abundance
      • Love/Acceptance; Fear/Control
      • Peace/Harmony
      • Perception: Seeing; Perspective
      • Power/Freedom
      • Reality/Truth
      • Respect/Honour

      Why Message Art?

      By reading messages, the meaning can be integrated into your belief system. Integration of knowledge is useful, not just for learning but for remembering. Reproducing a worded message nurtures the essence of what is being conveyed. This creative, albeit reproducing, act converts head-knowledge into heartfelt knowing.

      The printed, or written, word can be a visual-aid tool to look at, especially for visual learners, and bring us to a remembrance of its message. Words, and sentences, have power to express meaning. The use of words is an exercise in celebration. The words are drawn several times until each letter, each word, has been blocked into place ─ perhaps with different colours for emphasis! To grasp and get the meaning of a message, it helps to see, say, and hear the word’s meaning enlivened through expression. Sometimes it is these powerful messages we want to enlargen and give space to on a large sheet of poster paper.

      The messages you re-create are ones you feel are helpful for you at this time in your life journey. Each of us is somewhere along our own remembering curve. The artistic use of words is a way of expressing high-end values. You convey the message and let your eyes take in the words. Your conceptual mind gives them meaning, and your soul feels its message as it is believed in, valued and trusted.

      Message Art can be used as a memory tool to remind us, at a glance, of our higher nature, higher truth and higher reality. So it is natural that we cultivate deeper meanings by integrating new or revisited beliefs into our belief system. Message Art helps us to focus on what’s really important and meaningful to us. The scores of uplifting message posters I’ve made have been for my soul’s expansion, and to make sense of my world. I re-read the messages and feel an increase in self-worth, confidence, hope, stability, security and power, freedom, and joy. I remember.

      Message Art for Healing and Recovery

      The act of reproducing inspiring messages can present a two-fold opportunity. One is for our own growth and healing, and another is to share with the eyes of other souls. There is healing is self-expression. I have become mesmerized in a delightful way as to what has developed in the art I create. I become spellbound, in awe, taken by the spontaneous perfection of it. There is a freedom in surrendering to the soul’s communication be it through art, music or the printed word which can be recorded in order to be sung or chanted in an outward expression, or internalized silently. For me, this diet of positive intake is a soul purpose.

      I create with the intent to remind myself that I am whole, that I am healed beyond recovery, and to flow with the spirit like the person who sings her heart out, or the long-distance runner who runs into a state of bliss. This bliss leads to jubilation ─ joy acted out. It starts with a smile, then buoyancy. When I feel jubilant, l feel lighter. I feel like rejoicing. I sense my future coming into my present. The messages that you transfer onto paper are your reality.

      Self-talk, affirmations, declarations, statements of faith and plain truths, and helpful reminders. Look at these messages on a large poster-sized sheet. There’s a meditative quality about taking in a message for as long as you want, when you want. Inspirational messages, mantras, incantations, or affirming words of encouragement can be found in spiritual texts, Sutra statements, literature on virtuous qualities, and your own insights and notable quotations. It is suggested that we think on, or be with, higher, positive values and virtues.

      Hand-printing out, and reading, an inspirational and comforting message will infuse your mind with a higher vibration. For example, love and gratitude emit the highest frequency in the universe. This activity allows us to become increasingly stable and mature emotionally. We feel more integrated.

      Chapman (a graphic designer for many years) has over 70 such posters hanging from installed clotheslines at St. Paul’s United Church (McDonald Hall). This display is called “Clothesline Inspirational”. An introduction sign ask you, “When you have a negative or fear-based thought, what do you replace it with? What positively inspiring thought do you choose to return to your true mind nature, your genuine Self?” People who have toured the hanging posters have commented:
      • “Time in the Hall has been so precious with these wonderful hangings.”
      • “Your creativity is our blessing. So much to enjoy!”
      • “This artwork display is truly inspirational.”
      • “These thoughts have had quite an uplifting impact. Thank you!”

      Positive message “flash” cards


      You can also make your own positive message “flash” cards the size of regular playing cards or index cards that can fit into a box. This set of cards can be referred to as a “pack of truths.” Messages are short one-liners (single sentences) laid out on pre-cut card stock.

      Layout instruction is given. Participants need not be artistically accomplished to enjoy this fun, casual and inspiring “art circle.” There is no failure; only success. Everyone is welcome.
    • Accepting Your Genius [+]
      • What is genius?
      • Who has genius?
      • How does genius develop?
      • Where and when does genius occur?
      • Why does genius occur?
      • Why do you have genius?

      Based on the presenter’s book Grit, God and Genius, the presenter shows how you can accept your genius – your gifted differentness.
  • Reviews

    What Audience Members Have Commented on Robert Chapman's Workshops

    “Robert Chapman’s personal account of recovery using cognitive coping strategies is remarkable. A McMaster University study has shown that his lectures are effective in inspiring hope for others.”
    - Joel Goldberg, Ph.D. (McMaster University)

    “Innovative approach. I am eager to implement your ideas into my work.”
    - S. Grant (Alternatives, East York Mental Health Counselling Services)

    “A role model. His presentations are a valuable component of Patient Education.”
    - A. Leung-Lee, C.S.W. (Schizophrenia Program, Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital)

    “This information would be useful in developing or improving agency programs.”
    - C. Clark, B.Sc. O.T. (Schizophrenia Division, Clarke Institute of Psychiatry)

    “Enormous positive contribution to recovery techniques.”
    - J.H. Balthazar, National Director, Self- Help/Mutual Aid (Canadian Council on Social Development)

    “Your cognitive skills dealing with delusions are potentially helpful to many people.”
    - R. Smith, M.S.W. (East Region Mental Health Services)

    “Highly resourceful strategies used to deal with paranoid thoughts.”
    - L. Babiski, MHSc., B.Sc., O.T. (McMaster University)

    “Absorbing. Unique, honest, perspective.”
    - J. Hotson, Dip. S.S.W. Social Therapist (C.M.H.A. ─ Welland Branch)

    “Very refreshing approach to recovery.”
    - A. Pinkney, Executive Director (C.M.H.A. ─ Leeds- Grenville Branch)

    “Inspiring lecturer, empowering consumers to eliminate paranoid delusions through their own efforts.”
    - H. Woodside, O.T.R. (Hamilton Program for Schizophrenia)

    Additional Audience Comments

    • “Excellent rigour in thinking. A privilege to learn from this inspiring man.”
    • “Personable, professional speaker. I gained a new awareness and greater understanding of paranoid fears.”
    • “Dynamic orator giving professionals the angle of approach to delusions.”
    • “You have reduced the fear that many workers have about delusional thoughts.”
    • “Robert explained all the symptoms of his illness in a way that was understandable. He outlined in detail what his approach was in getting well. This recovery account was very inspirational.”
    • “With sincerity and humour, it is remarkable how Chapman puts people at ease while speaking about such a profound and potentially uncomfortable topic.”
    • “His excellent and informative presentation was indeed quite helpful. It re-affirms my faith in continued support of those who are afflicted with this illness.”
    • “Most credible speaker-author. Outstanding courage to present his experience.”
    • “Powerful, very effective. You pulled heart strings.”
    • “Confirmed my own beliefs regarding the ability to dispel delusions. Thank you.”
    • “Concrete, honest and compassionate. Straight-forward first-hand knowledge.”
  • Chronology of Workshops

    Chronicle of Workshop Speaking Presentations
    “Dissolving Paranoid Delusions”
    by Robert Chapman
    A personal account of how to recognize, counter-argue, and replace paranoid beliefs. Scenarios are exemplified, critically re-evaluated, and alternative explanations and interpretations are explored.


    • Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital Hamilton, Patient Education Program

    • Canadian Mental Health Association (C.M.H.A.) Burlington Branch Chedoke-McMaster Hospital Mohawk College nursing students

    • C.M.H.A. Welland
    • C.M.H.A. Hamilton-Wentworth

    • East Region Mental Health Services (St. Joseph's Hospital)
    • International Association of Psychosocial Rehabilitation Services (I.A.P.S.R.S.) Ontario Chapter conference, Hamilton

    • C.M.H.A. Brockville
    • C.M.H.A. Chatham
    • Mohawk College Employment Program Hamilton
    • Homestead Residential & Support Services Hamilton

    • Canadian Council on Social Development Self-Help/Mutual Aid Conference, Ottawa
    • I.A.P.S.R.S. International conference, Oakland, CA
    • Hamilton Program for Schizophrenia Hamilton
    • Schizophrenia Society of Ontario, Burlington Chapter
    • WENDAT Community Psychiatric Program Penetanguishene
    • Ontario Alternative Housing Cmte. conference, Kingston

    • Queen Street Mental Health Centre conference, Toronto
    • I.A.P.S.R.S. Ontario Chapter conference, Kingston
    • C.M.H.A. Kitchener
    • United Way Hamilton-Burlington, Fundraising Campaign speaking for S.S.O.

    • St. Thomas Psychiatric Hospital presentation at Tillsonburg General Hospital
    • C.M.H.A. Clinton / Goderich
    • United Way Hamilton-Burlington, Fundraising Campaign

    1994- 2005
    • McMaster University, School of Rehabilitation Science, panel for O.T. Clinical Skills class, Hamilton

    • Clarke Institute of Psychiatry conference, Toronto
    • Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital Rounds on Psychosocial Rehabilitation, Hamilton
    • C.M.H.A. / Schizophrenia Society of Ontario Owen Sound
    • I.A.P.S.R.S. Ontario Chapter conference, Barrie

    • I.A.P.S.R.S. International conference, Detroit
    • C.M.H.A. York Region, City of North York
    • C.M.H.A. Provincial Conference, Windsor
    • London Psychiatric Hospital and St. Thomas Psychiatric Hospital
    • C.M.H.A. / Schizophrenia Society of Ontario Sarnia
    • C.M.H.A. Brantford
    • Sunnybrook Hospital Health Sciences conference, North York
    • Royal Victoria Hospital, Barrie

    • I.A.P.S.R.S. Ontario Chapter conference, Guelph
    • Community Resources Consultants of Toronto, Toronto

    • Consumer/Survivor Development Project and Family Support Initiative, Owen Sound
    • East General Hospital Holistic Health Centre, Toronto
    • I.A.P.S.R.S. Ontario Chapter conference, Niagara Falls

    2000 - 2005
    • Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, “Talking About Mental Illness” (TAMI program), Hamilton

    • C.M.H.A. Waterloo/Kitchener
    • C.M.H.A. Lyndsay
    • Ontario Peer Development Initiative conference, University of Toronto

    • I.A.P.S.R.S. International conference, Toronto

    • McMaster University, School of Nursing
    • McMaster University, School of Rehabilitation Science, Physiotherapy and O.T. Clinical Skills
    • Ontario Skeptics Society, University of Toronto, Toronto

    • I.A.P.S.R.S. Ontario Chapter conference, Hamilton


    • McMaster University, School of Rehabilitation Science, Physiotherapy and O.T. Clinical Skills

    • C.M.H.A. Simcoe County Branch, Orillia

    • Orillia Solder’s Memorial Hospital and ACTT (C.M.H.A.), Orillia

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