Belief is deceptive, but belief is essential. Faith is fine, but facts and Truth are often stronger. I’m a writer, father, and husband, a Fifth-generation Californian. Now at age 48, I grew up during the Cold War, Vietnam, the drug-addled 70’s, and all that has come since. Friendship, family loyalty, various spiritual guides, education, and the privilege of an abundant life in our great land, have shaped my views and experience; but also tragedy. I was caught up in the Christian religious fervor of the 80’s, and I ended up in a very abusive situation. What might have been a common ‘nervous breakdown’ when I was 22 years-old, was turned instead into an opportunity for others to practice exorcism, demonism, occultism, and so on, with terrifying violence, hatred, extremes of fanatical opinion, and the resulting psychosis, depression, frustration and debilitation. This happened against my will, in secret, and was never exposed. I was abandoned and forgotten. There are thousands of ‘Emily Rose’-type people among us today. Many children have been killed in this way. What, you might ask, do we learn? I surivived—but my inner-life was violated as if by torture, and I was an emotional ruin. Compassion, Truth, simple dedication to reality, reasonable diligence and common sense in religion, and prhaps humility, can prevent these things that have happened to me. Today, 20 years later, I have worked as a newspaper editor, a reporter, a screenwriter, and also as a janitor, a security guard, a grocery bag-boy, and then at times without work. I’ve written more than 80 children’s books, currently available. I’ve been married 17 years to a wonderful woman and we have a bouyant 16 year-old son. There is no abuse in our home. What do I believe? Non-violence is the proper philosphy for the mentally ill. Abusers should be exposed. The Truth about anything, your coffee cup or your mother’s childhood, does not change. But as we change, we must love, help, and heal. And we must change.