Western Association for Biofeedback and Neuroscience — Spring 2017 28 discussed. In the early years, if something hadn’t been published, then it could not even be presented at conferences. Prevail- ing CEU criteria reflect this standard to this very day. In the early years this threshold even applied to private conversations, placing professionals in a state of perpetual vig- ilance. The assertion of an aspiring fact would energize almost anyone in the proj- ect of calling it into question, of inquir- ing into its provenance. ‘Has this been published?’ If not, then the conversation might well have ended right at that point. As for the exploration of new frontiers, there appeared to be little enthusiasm. “There is such a thing as too much in- novation,” according to a recent post by a member of the AAPB. It is a matter of direct relevance to the project of chart- ing our future to inquire into how things could have gone so badly off track for so long in a field that was harboring so many mysteries while showing so much prom- ise. Two Magisteria At the panel discussion I told the sto- ry of a theologian from Harvard Divinity School who reflected on his own history of adolescence to report that when he first started dating, his mother told him to “always act as if he saw Jesus walking by.” (He admitted that over time he decided to take his chances….) His mother had installed a behavioral control agent in his brain that no doubt served nicely to mod- erate his ardor. Our entire field has done the same. We installed mainstream thinking as stan- dard-setting for our enterprise, and with respect to that standard we were always coming up short. At each conference, our own behavioral control agent was on-line to censor every conversation. We could only whisper the unmentionables if we also added the disclaimer that of course the definitive research had yet to be done…only then could we be back in good graces. It became part of our cul- tural waggle dance to apologize for the appearance of making claims before their time. Since the practical means of doing the definitive research were always beyond us, we had effectively outsourced the final arbitration of the truth claims of our dis- cipline. Those were the years of the Grand Smack-down, with the custodians of the field all acting in the service of the behav- ioral control agent that they had them- selves installed in their brains. Note the parallelism here with the Judeo-Christian tradition of our Euro- pean culture. We had our priesthood; we had our doctrines; we had catechism and confirmation (certification); we had our revered texts; we had our sanctuaries (universities and hospitals); we were told that Judgment Day would be coming and that our betters would be arbitrating our claims within their sanctuaries. In the meantime, we would be in the status of sinners always falling short of the scien- tific ideal. Instead of ‘getting right with God’ we had ‘getting right with science.’ And just as there is no vacuum in the ethical universe of religion, in the psycho- logical sciences a professional could never be caught without a value judgment. In that value hierarchy, new findings could always be rendered suspect because they had not yet run the gauntlet of indepen- dent verification. A listener could always