Wednesday, September 26, 2018

The Flow Genome Project - modern snake oil? con?

I thought I would point MindBlog readers to comments made on my post of 11/7/2017, where I offered a scathing review of a book, "Stealing Fire" which purports to describe how the Flow Genome Project (for a considerable amount of money) will take you to the next level of human performance. The comments include an exchange between a very dissatisfied customer/student and a staff member in the first two classes offered ("Flow Fundamentals" and "Flow Performance.").   

Comment:
I read your commentary on the Flow Genome Project (FGP) with great interest. Your suspicions about this "effort" are spot on, and I wish that I had your insight before taking two of these classes from the FGP...The first class (Flow Fundamentals) was a great community of people, and I learned much from them, and nothing from the FGP personnel. The second class (Flow Performance) was pseudo-profound BS (PPBS.) There is a great paper that won an Ig Nobel Prize titled "On the reception and detection of pseudo-profound bullshit."...The paper perfectly described every aspect of this class!! The instructor - Jamie Wheal - is more interested in impressing people with PPBS than realaying any useful information. Also, each class is prefaced with the promise that "All the secrets of Stealing Fire will be revealed in this next class." I stopped when this promise was not delivered in Flow Performance; but, was promised for private coaching (at an extremely high price).
Response from Flow Genome Project:
We're actually re-launching our new website in the coming month or so to address and make more transparent the research we're working on. As for the links, that was a frustrating mistake with them being published without confirmation on the back end. The correct working links are:  
http://stealingfirebook.com/downloads
http://stealingfirebook.com/research 
[note inserted at this point by Bownds...the corrected links now actually work, but the web page /research contains no research,  and the web page /downloads is simply a sales pitch for buying the book "Stealing Fire"....their "correct working links" yield no relevant information!.].. continuing:
  
Sorry to hear Mike that you're still not satisfied with your experience in the course. Those marketing criticisms are puzzling as we unpacked quite a lot of information in Flow Performance with respect to that topic. The private coaching is not promising to deliver hidden information that Flow Performance does not, but rather the personal 1:1 time with a coach.
Response to the last sentence by commenter:
Here is an excerpt from an email from Jamie Wheal announcing the availability of private coaching to all members of the Flow Performance Class: 
"I’ve only ever done this with CEOs and military leaders, never before to the general public. We’re going to combine deep dive coaching, direct facilitation through some of our highest octane tools and a behind the curtain look at what we covered in Stealing Fire. No filter. Gloves off. The most potent tools and techniques we’ve learned in over a decade of working with the best in the world, and seeing what actually sticks." 
The VERY same promise made for Flow Performance. A promise that was never kept. I rest my case!!
Further comment:
During the Flow Performance Class, Jamie Wheal made the statement multiple times that "Stealing Fire [the book that he co-authored and the foundation for FGP training] is a complete fiction; a Promethean Prank." Taking him at his word, how can such a document have any scientific validity and/or application at all?! In addition, whenever a topic came up - in Flow Performance - in which certain class members had experience and deep understanding (e.g. Breathwork, DNA testing, Microdosing), the lack of knowledge/depth of understanding on the part of the FGP was blindingly obvious given the FGP's responses to deeper inquiries by those experts in the class. It is very telling when one starts addressing questions and concerns about their work with statements about their credentials, listing members of their network/inner circle, and engaging in character assassination against those who question; rather than addressing the questions directly. This was a constant problem during Flow Performance. It was the worst, but not the only, source of pseudo profound bullshit in the Flow Performance class.

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