The Zarchin Method for correcting cognitive disfunctions is based on the following underlying principles:
A revolutionary transformation in learning and behavior can be quickly and easily attained. The level of a person’s learning capability and way of thinking are not static, unalterable facts of life. Rather, they are the result of cognitive functions that can be changed quickly and easily. This is an extremely significant idea, seeing that a person’s way of thinking, based on these cognitive functions, is what underlies all his learning, his learning functions, his behavior and his behavior functions. When changes in these functions can be attained, he can be dramatically transformed in all areas of his learning and behavior. Based on this principle, our approach regards every individual as having the potential to achieve the highest level of mental and behavioral functioning. It is not that we teach patients a new approach; rather, we connect them with and lead them to a discovery of the potential that already exists within them, as an integral part of who they are.
Every field of inquiry and every topic that a person is exposed to share, at every moment, the same underlying, basic model of cognitive processes. This model is comprised of five functions: (1) Inquiry – which entails identifying the various elements of the topic; (2) Meaning – attributing significance to the object of perception; (3) Combining – combining the details of information into a comprehensive whole; (4) Expression and Abstraction – using previously agreed upon signs and symbols to express and objectify knowledge and information, and (5) Expansion – expanding and developing both the information acquired, as well as a person’s original and independent thinking.
Concurrent with this model, another fundamental model of cognitive development and flow exists, which is influenced by the totality of a person’s senses, particularly the interaction of Sight – which includes both seeing and observing, Hearing – meaning listening and attentiveness, and Touch – which includes touching and movement. The sense of smell and taste are also relevant, but less so.
In other words, the various senses absorb energies from a person’s encounter with the world and send messages all to the same place – the brain’s center of information processing, where the root of the five functions, listed above, can be found.
Weak mental processes are strengthened by connecting them to strong ones. The fact that the brain’s center of information processing is so vital and central, and that it is connected to and responsible for the functioning of the five senses, is precisely what enables us to correct it. It is always possible to find at least one area where information is being processed correctly and to link it to another area where information processing is impaired, thus rectifying the impairment.
For instance, a child who struggles with reading and the ability to distinguish between letters may suffer from impaired mental processing only in this specific context. However, there are countless other areas in which his information processing and power of discernment work perfectly well, such as during play. The moment we create a link between mental discernment in reading and some level of discernment in play, his ability to recognize letters will be corrected.
An understanding of sight as a type of thinking and thinking as a type of sight, and of the essential role of sight in cognitive functions. According to our approach, seeing is thinking and thinking is seeing. Correct mental processing is, in essence, the correct processing of that which a person sees with his eyes, hears with his ears, feels through his fingers, and smells and tastes. It entails correctly interpreting what we see with our eyes and properly seeing and distinguishing between all the data. The stronger a person’s “vision”; that is, the better he perceives data through his thought processes, the higher his intellectual level and ability to learn.
The good news inherent in our approach is that the senses of sight and thought – seeing with the “eye of the intellect” – are not static but can be developed and refined. Experience shows that not only can defects in mental functions be corrected, average capabilities can themselves be raised to the level of genius. This means that by employing these various tools, a person of normal capabilities and an acceptable level of written expression can attain a high level of accomplishment.
The sense of touch and movement play an important role in correcting deficient mental functions. Although on the surface the sense of touch seems quite removed from thought, it plays a vital role in creating a link between cognitive functions and the development of the mind. In our exercises and work with children, we integrate touch and movement in various ways, thus forming a basis for the child’s mental development and the actualization of his or her inner strengths. Beyond touch and movement, we combine other senses, such as seeing and hearing, and if necessary, smell and taste. Integrating these senses helps strengthen the weaker areas of the mind.
According to our approach, the emotional bond forged between therapist and patient, and the trust we instill in the child, play a critical role in fostering change. In order to
reveal the child’s inner strengths and help him actualize his true potential, we must bring him into a relationship with someone who will send him the right messages and spark his self-confidence. In order to achieve the revolutionary changes that we believe are possible, there must be personal chemistry between the child and the adult who works with him. This occurs through emotional and verbal messages. This chemistry, when combined with tools that utilize the senses and movement, helps us resolve even the most difficult problems.