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a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin. But there
was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through
first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be
paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these
obstacles were my life.
~ Alfred D Souza
have neither a past nor a future. Thus they enjoy the present, which
seldom happens to us.
~ Jean de la Bruyere
Anyone can be a genius,
he will pick just one specific subject
study it diligently just 15 minutes each day.
~ Albert Einstein
from Ed in Red)
Thu, 30 Sep 2004
in Boston Area
Ed, I read FAQ and feel happy when contributors announce the progress they
make in their personal development. I think the work you do on the site to
facilitate personal development is great.
Yesterday, I read a contributor's passage that causes me to think about
some of my thought patterns. I believe that my consistent need for love
and attention manifests itself in behaviors that serve this need, but do
so in ways that otherwise cause me pain.
I have memories
of what I now recognize as this pattern that go back to my very early
youth. The behaviors have changed, but the pattern is the same. I now know
it consciously. I believe your site is the catalyst that precipitated my
I thank you for publishing the TT site. It helps me in my development as a
trader and in other areas of my life.
I live in [City] which is approximately 110 miles from Boston. I believe
that my progress might be more rapid if I participate in the TT Process.
Do you know anyone in the Boston area who is interested in forming a
tribe? If so, may I have that person's contact information?
Tribe Directory, above, for a Tribe near you - or you can start one of
Thu, 30 Sep 2004
Thanks for providing this site for all of us crazy traders and I also
trust everything is well with you and yours these days.
Many of the insightful posts I have read during the last couple of years
on your TT website have been extremely helpful to me in my own self
development phases, but one in particular shines like a huge diamond.
The post of Sept 12th from an IV tribe member, detailing his Hot Seat
experience on Sept 2nd, really describes the process to perfection and was
the most helpful “single post” I have seen for general guidance in
TTP. He covers everything from Fred’s persistent messages, to diving
deep to locate feelings, being alone with just feelings, dissolving them
and also your most important love, for family …
Everyone should closely read / and absorb the many messages in this very
comprehensive post. (If you ever do give an award for the Best single post
- this one will certainly get my vote, so far anyway.)
- I am registering your vote.
You Get Enough Votes
might get a song on your birthday.
Wed, 29 Sep 2004
My last post to your FAQ was on April 29 this year.
I have continued to keep myself up to date with developments on your site.
However, as I had mentioned in an earlier post, I have not yet
"experienced" the Trading Tribe Process.
There is still no Mumbai Tribe, and the only Tribe in India (Chennai) is
still starting up. I've been in touch with ... leader of the Chennai
Tribe, and I want you to know that [he and another man] (who privately
consulted with you a few years ago, and has kept in touch with you through
FAQ since), and I have been in touch with each other. We met in Mumbai a
few weeks ago, at [consult guy's] home. We spoke about our approaches to
trading, and "discussed" TTP.
I was thrilled to read about the November workshop in Reno, and have
decided to attend it. I have dispatched my Check and Registration Form to
you today. Please reserve a place for me in the workshop.
Finally, having never experienced TTP live, I thought I might benefit by
attending a Tribe meeting - ANY Tribe meeting - before the workshop. So I
contacted ... leader of the San Jose Tribe, and asked him for permission
to attend the San Jose meeting of Thursday, November 4. [He] was quick to
welcome me to that meeting of his Tribe.
Ed, is there anything else you recommend I do, in order to make the most
out of the November workshop?
Thanks, and regards.
might consider listening carefully to the feelings of your family members
and friends - and make it a point to validate and encourage their
feelings, no matter what they are.
you get good at it, you might try validating and encouraging your own
Mon, 27 Sep 2004
In system development, you stress a lot on clarity (e.g. "Please
define "when it appears a second time") and the importance of
staying in the NOW ("I don't know how to enter a MOC order after the
close"). You suggest that we backtest the system and feel if it is
one we can live with, and also optimize it.
It brings me
awareness to things such as survivorship bias, and I fully embrace the
concept that the best system is the system I can stick to.
Two questions here:
1) A backtest that gives a P&L curve implies there is some entry and
exit price, so even if the entry signal is clear, there is actually an
assumption that we have infinite liquidity at that particular trade price
where I can trade unlimited shares. As such, the actual results deviate
from backtest/theoretical. How do you estimate slippage for your
2) You mention optimization as part of the goal of System 1, along with
defining, encoding and back-testing. A lot of literature cautions
over-optimization that may lead to curve-fitting. So from your experience,
how much is too much?
What are some
guidelines to properly do optimization while not over-fit the data,
especially when trend-following seems to bet on rare events that don't
Many thanks. I appreciate your answers.
you can try simulating various estimations for slippage per some fraction
of the distance from the non-slip price to the worst price of the
your results are sensitive to your slippage, you might consider reducing
your trading frequency.
Much: The idea is to build a mitten that fits most hands - a glove that
fits a couple hands extremely well, likely does not fit others at all.
Good First Step in Back Testing
to find a back to test.
Mon, 27 Sep 2004
I do have a few questions,
I wonder how you define the following:
1) static money management
2) dynamic money management
3) how can one incorporate these in terms of system development and
considering specific personality issues?
I realize that
there are a few moments in life when a trader can stand much more
volatility and risk more, especially when lots of subjective pieces fall
Insight would be immensely appreciated
Maybe you could refine the risk management paper and add portfolio issues.
That would be a great thing!
do not define either - as these are terms you are bringing to FAQ.
you might like to check the source of these terms for definitions.
Mon, 27 Sep 2004
I have not received a reply to this message I sent you on the 17th. It
occurred to me that if you replied by e-mail, it might have been
mistakenly sent to the spam folder. If this is the case would you please
resend your response? Adding the additional address of :
It also occurred to me that you feel that I should work out the answers to
the questions myself. The part I am stuck on is the makeup of the
community of participants.
of this type appeal to dreamers, sometimes they can attract people with
demonstrated records of accomplishment. Some information about workshop
attendees, past and (ideally) present would be most helpful.
I am interested in your workshop, but am not sure if it is appropriate for
me. I would appreciate the chance to discuss it with someone ...
I have been a futures trader in my personal account since 1977, and have
been successful for the last several years, I am past the point of
grappling with the demons of following ones system and losing confidence
in the methodology.
My interest in the seminar is twofold:
1. a desire to refine my "trend capturing" methodology which
is different than the fundamental approach used in the mutual fund
2. Gaining insight on the issue of whether it is better to work alone, or
in a group. If the answer is a group, how best to go about it.
So, my questions are these:
Would I be a good person to have at the seminar? Would the seminar be
helpful in regard to my interests? What other types of people will be
Workshop can address your two interests: (1). Refining your methodology
and (2) Exploring how to best relate to colleagues.
your questions: I do not know if you would be a good person.
I do not know if the Workshop would be good for you. I
do not publish the identities of the participants.
Sun, 26 Sep 2004
About an Image
Do the copyrights for [the images on FAQ] belong to you?
Someone took the
picture and used it on [Website] saying that it qualifies as fair use,
according to this notice on the FAQ page:
assemble and conduct meetings to discuss, teach and use anything on the
Trading Tribe Site - as long as it is (1) not-for-profit, (2) absolutely
participants, (3) at the risk of the presenters and participants."
Please let me know if picture copyrights belong to you, as I just want to
make sure it is fair use to use on [Website]. If it is not I will delete
is unable to award permission to use clips from other sites. To gain
such permission, follow the credit link under the clip you want to use.
intention of the permission is to promote the formation and operation of
Intentional Communities. It does not extend to publication of
Sat, 25 Sep 2004
I appreciate your introduction that neither the past nor future exists
except as a concept in the NOW.
It is very
shocking and it opens a new door for me. It definitely helps me more aware
of the NOW moment.
There is still
one lingering question that I have in mind: isn't it true that the
sunlight that we are receiving NOW - actually is the sunlight of the PAST
(roughly 8 mins ago)?
Or at night when
we look up in the sky and the beautiful stars that we see NOW may be dead
and have vanished already at this moment of now, yet we are seeing the
light it emitted in the PAST?
Thank you very much for your insights.
see the light now, that reaches you now.
sun emits light now, although you do not see that same light now.
using SVO-p, helps you to keep your thinking in the now, your sense of
responsibility with yourself.
find ways to not see, now
light that arrives, now.
Sat, 25 Sep 2004
I have great interest in trading and as such I endeavored to read as much
could on the subject from the pragmatic to the narrative. The most
striking thing I have
discovered about becoming a trader in my readings and through my own
thoughts on the subject is that becoming a good trader has more to do with
an individual's mastery of their self than anything else.
I recently read New Market Wizards, which featured the story of the
excerpted from the The Traders Window. When I read the story of the
Jademaster and the eager young student it captivated me, I could not stop
thinking about it and I puzzled over it for months.
Finally I put
myself in the shoes of the student. I envisioned the moment of realization
when the student discovers that what he is holding is not real jade I saw
myself as the student feeling greatly frustrated and blurting out to the
Jade master “I came here to learn about jade, and this is not even real
jade …” When I had this epiphany I realized the great degree of
self-mastery required if one is to be a successful trader.
to know when the Jade is real
when the Bull is real.
Fri, 24 Sep 2004
At the end of the last workshop the group commits to keeping a
"System 3" commitment. The commitment is for each workshop
participant to act consistently with three rules he creates for himself
over the course of the workshop. Additionally, each person commits to
communicating once each week with three other participants to report
progress and clarify his intention.
In turn, each
person acts as a receiver / supporter for three other participants to help
them keep their commitments. We commit to all of this through June 30th.
About one business quarter elapses since that time, and I am getting in
touch with my System 3 receivers to catch up a bit.
I have tremendous progress in clarifying and simplifying my trading
system. I am no longer cutting any winners short, but rather every exit
meets my definition of a trend change or a protective stop loss. My stop
losses effectively cut losers short, and my risk management is improved
and simplified based on some ideas your auditing inspires. Also, my system
is more robust, by my personal definition, when tested against differing
portfolios, timeframes, and parameters.
Performance is consistent with my tested results thus far. It seems that
my methods of simulating rolling over positions, accounting for slippage
and commissions, etc. adequately match the actual values. I am in a
drawdown at present. Looking at the charts of the markets I trade this
does not surprise me. However, some trends are beginning to show up, and I
am a bit off the equity curve trough.
Traders categorized by the investment world as systematic trend followers
are in a pretty good sized drawdown as a group according to the
performance numbers I see. I notice that historically when that happens,
performance in the next reporting period is above average. This does not
prove much except as a rule: markets trend for a while, then they don't.
Then they trend again. It is interesting to make the distinction
between noticing that market tendency versus making a prediction about
when trends show up again. At any rate, I follow my system when markets
trend and when they don't.
I do have some recent drama that I take into TTP concerning short term
trading. I decide a couple of months ago that I could develop a further
edge in the markets by diversifying into short term trading as well as
long term trend following. I investigate and question what I perceive as
my own negative bias toward short term trading.
I am concerned
with frictional costs and small reward to risk ratios, but decide to
continue further anyway. My math indicates that with the ultra low
commissions available on electronically traded products slippage may not
kill the system. Etc., etc., drama and so forth. I never go so far as to
really start trading short term intraday, but I certainly explore it in
depth. My conclusion: I don't like it. There are traders that could not
stand to trade like I do, and they may have methods that beat mine all to
pieces, but I just don't enjoy short term trading. Even when systematized
to the same extent that my long term trading is, I have a lot of feelings
that come up that warn me away from trading this way.
When I take my feelings to the hot seat, I really find that I have very
few feelings about short term trading aside from thoughts like
"disinterest" and "don't want to do it". These are
typical avoidance phrases indicating a k-not. However, as I do TTP and go
deeper, other forms present that are not primarily about trading (short or
long term). I use these forms to enroll in a totally different recurring
drama involving several judgments and forms. I stay on the hot seat for
quite a while, but I am unwilling to fully experience the feelings and I
Normally I am
good at getting into the feelings and staying with them. With this one,
all I want to do is talk about it. It must be one I am really
avoiding. Since the last tribe meeting I experience less of the drama, and
I am surprised at the improvement since there is no zero point with this
set of forms yet. I take these forms back into TTP again, and I commit to
really staying with it at my next hot seat.
When we talk last at the end of June, we speak about holotropic breath
work and a session you are considering doing with some TTP folk. You
suggest that I may want to get familiar with it by finding an experienced
practitioner in my area and doing a session or more. I Google and search
my local resources, but I don't find anyone that offers sessions.
There is one
outfit that does seminars, but the next one is in January. I decide my
intention must be weak about this work if I don't follow through and take
action in the last three months. I order some materials (books and music)
from Stan Grof's site in order to familiarize myself with the process and
spark some further movement of the universe in the direction of my
intention to do breath work. Right now, I wait for those materials to
All in all, I feel like I chop wood and carry water and it feels good.
Thanks for receiving, Ed. Best wishes to you and your teachers from me and
Thu, 23 Sep 2004
Thank you for the reply. I don't have a desire to fast or abstain nor do I
express one in my previous email.
I do have a
desire to experience my emotions and their positive intentions. I wonder
how fasting and/or abstaining organically affect the TTP process.
relationship between fasting, abstaining and TTP likely varies from person
forms of self-denial are an issue, or where their not being an issue is an
issue, they may serve as entry points for TTP.
Thu, 23 Sep 2004
I like the PPR but find it difficult to implement sometimes, especially on
properties that the family members just have to share?
Say if we only
have one refrigerator, one toilet, one TV, one computer at home ... it
seems strange to say, "OK, Dad is the owner of the toilet, and
whether one can wait or not, no one can use the toilet unless he has
permission from Dad."
And it isn't
like we can have four or five bathrooms or we can assign each person a
period during the day since we don't know when we'd need it. How do we
apply PPR on those things?
PPR (see glossary) , everything has an owner. If you own a house
with one toilet, you likely also own the toilet.
and non-owner residents use it at your invitation, not without it.
your children realize you are granting them a license to use the toilet,
the refrigerator, their beds, the electricity and water, they get closer
to the idea that someone has to own (and pay for) these things.
induces respect for property owners and the desire to become one.
no such thing as a little bit pregnant or a little bit Socialist.
Service Trading Throne
Thu, 23 Sep 2004
Dear Mr. Seykota,
I am an Italian electrical planner and I have read wonderful things about
your way to lead trading.
As I am a beginner in the matter, I gently ask you if you could teach me
"philosophy" especially related to Italian stocks market.
I tried to read in your site "trading Tribe" a few informations
but as I do not get away well in your language, I did not understand the
I would very appreciate your eventual questions.
do not know of any major location specific differences between stock
markets; they all trend, sometimes.
Rule that Applies to All Markets:
your losers the boot.
Thu, 23 Sep 2004
You write in regards to Carl Rogers:
"Rogers' techniques include subtle forms of
assuming a solution and then
transferring the assumption to clients."
Would you be more specific? I haven't heard that before
statement is just a hunch on my part, basis reading about him. I
have no specific evidence.
result from basing
Thu, 23 Sep 2004
Been a long time ... I've thought about you many times the last few years;
I'm sorry I haven't contacted you before now.
I saw [famous trader] last weekend and we discussed the important role
that you had played in each of our lives. I told [him] that outside of my
parents, that you had the greatest effect of anyone on where and
who I am today. I wanted you to know how much I greatly appreciate the
contributions that you have made in my life - educationally, spiritually,
emotionally, financially and intellectually.
As an adult, you
have been my single greatest teacher. I don't know if you knew that I felt
this way, so I didn't want another moment that I thought about you to go
by without taking the time to reach out and say thanks.
I hope that life has been treating you and your family well these last
years. Other than the passing of my parents ... [we] have truly been
blessed. We're all healthy (at least physically!) and have prospered
financially. We certainly have nothing to complain about. Although I am
not making my living from trading, as I intended to when I began in this
business, my brokerage business has been successful.
[Trader] and I
have begun some dialogue regarding me raising money for him in a new fund
he's thinking of starting next year. I would like to transition out of
brokering toward placing money with traders, helping traders grow their
business, helping traders trade better. I've always felt that as much
as I enjoyed playing tennis, that I taught it better than I actually
played it. Perhaps it is the same way with trading. I'm still finding my
way like everyone else.
It would be great to hear from you, Ed. I miss seeing and speaking to you.
I'm still living in [City], I'd love to see you if you're ever in the area
for business, taking the kids to Disneyland, etc. I know that you are
extremely busy, but it would be nice to catch up with you if you have some
I wish you and your family peace and prosperity.
you for your nice note.
to readers: plenty of money is out there looking for good traders.
Tue, 21 Sep 2004
A FAQ's contributor: I sometimes use sex, food,
alcohol, and other substances to avoid experiencing certain feelings.
Ed: When you convert your feelings from adversaries
to allies, you lose your desire to avoid your feelings. Abstinence, then,
becomes just another sexual preference. You might consider taking your
desire to fast and abstain into the process.
Self examination is subject to side-tracking by self-protection.
I read your response to the FAQ's contributor who has a drama about using
sex, food, alcohol and other substances to avoid experiencing certain
feelings. I also recall other instances where you suggest readers who have
drama about being fat to take their feelings about doing regular exercises
into the process.
I just would like to add that, perhaps, their knotty feelings are about
using sex, alcohol ... and about being fat, etc ... rather than something
I say so as I have a similar drama, although in a lesser degree. I have a
sedentary job and lifestyle and as such regular exercises and a healthy
diet are warranted.
I am also at the
risk of becoming fat and to a slight degree I am becoming so (my belly
more specifically). Self protective agendas go like this: 1 - I eat more
than I need and I procrastinate the diet for a later date; and 2 - I look
at myself in the mirror and I say to myself: "No, your belly is not
getting bigger. Moreover, just a little exercises and you'll make it for
the extra meal you've taken."
And in this case, I guess I may choose to experience the feelings of
getting fatter or enroll myself into the drama of becoming a fully grown
So, my send is: I have a hard time accepting the fact that I am getting
fat, even though in an unnoticeable speed, and that I need regular
exercises and a healthy diet.
TTP, analyzing what our feelings are about, is just more distraction from
the work of sending and receiving feelings.
the post-process moment of aha, we tend to re-frame our feelings as
allies, so whatever historical connections they have tend to disappear.
the Coin Disappears
get a sudden aha!
Tue, 21 Sep 2004
Is it true you find it good
questions with a hood ?
direct is a jest,
the answer yourself is the best.
I wonder if this
method limits those
who are able to
uncover the fold ?
You for Such Flattery
the hood - find a battery.
Tue, 21 Sep 2004
I have wrote in many times during the last few years, and you have helped
me through a lot with your writings.
Last Spring I sent some emails to you on the formula for position sizing
for futures contracts, and made a commitment to bring a web based futures
position sizing calculator to the public. I have followed through on this
commitment and here is the result: [on my brokerage website]
Also if you have any suggestions to enhance its function let me know.
calculator looks pretty good; it divides your risk budget by your risk per
contract to find your number of contracts.
does not endorse people or commercial products (or link to brokerage
you would like to send a stand-alone version of your program to FAQ, I can
post it for download.
the Trade Doesn't Work Out
can always blame the calculator.