Roy Masters (commentator)

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Roy Masters
Roy Masters.jpg
Masters orating at Selma, Oregon in May 2014
Birth name Reuben Obermeister
Born (1928-04-02) 2 April 1928 (age 89)
London, United Kingdom
Show Advice Line with Roy Masters
Station(s) Broadcast on 190 radio stations[1]
Time slot 9–12 midnight PT Monday-Friday
Country United States

Roy Masters (born 2 April 1928) is host of Advice Line, a talk radio counseling show he started in 1961 and still hosts today. He is a prolific author and creator of a mindfulness meditation exercise, now used within the US military. Masters is founder of the Oregon-based non-profit organisation, the Foundation of Human Understanding. In his early twenties, he travelled across America lecturing on the topic of diamond cutting.

Early life in Britain[edit]

Roy Masters was born Reuben Obermeister in London in 1928 to a Jewish family of diamond cutters. Like his father, Boris, Masters uses the common anglicisation of his original surname.

When Masters was 15-years-old, his father died, in 1943. His family could only afford education for his older brother, so Masters did not attend college.[2] He was sent to Brighton, England to apprentice in diamond cutting at his uncle's company, Monnickendam Ltd.[3]


Diamond cutting[edit]

Masters served in the Royal Sussex Regiment of the British Army during World War II.[4] Following the war, he apprenticed in diamond cutting. He pursued his trade in many places, including Amsterdam; Brussels; Belgium; and Johannesburg in 1947, where he spent two years.[3][5]

In 1949, Masters emigrated to the United States. He traveled across the country, lecturing on diamond cutting, under the auspices of the Diamond Council of America.[4] He was invited to participate in radio and TV interviews on the subject, and he hosted a daily radio show called, "Story of Your Diamond".[4][2]

Within a short time, Masters had visited 40 of America's then 48 states.[5] He met and married his wife, Ann, in Birmingham, Alabama, and they eventually moved to Houston, Texas where they started a family.[citation needed] Masters eventually sold his diamond cutting business to start a new company, called the Institute of Hypnosis.

Lessons in hypnotism[edit]

During his early years in Brighton, Masters saw a vaudeville stage hypnosis presentation where the hypnotist easily induced volunteer subjects to do strange and outlandish things. Masters distinctly remembered pondering the question: "Why can't hypnotism be used to make people act sensibly, rather than foolishly?"[6] In the 1950s, excitement around Bridey Murphy's claimed past life regression led friends of Masters to consult with him about hypnosis.

Masters called hypnosis a "duplication of life's errors" and said no good can come from hypnotherapy.[2] He operated the Institute of Hypnosis in Houston, but instead of hypnotising clients, Masters claims he "unhypnotised" them.[2]

When I was a hypnotist, they used to say to me, "You're a hypnotist, are you? When are you going to put me to sleep?" And I would say, "Well when are you going to wake up? Because you're already asleep." Hypnosis is an altered state of consciousness, and we're not aware. When a person is hypnotised—or reacts to stress, which is the same thing—he's not aware that he's being influenced. And when he is under the influence, he moves and has his being according to somebody else's will. And we don't realize that but when we do realize it, we make excuses. We deny. We deny that somebody else is controlling us other than us. That's our problem.

— Roy Masters, appearance on the The Joe Franklin Show

In Houston, he saw as many as thirty people a day for consultation.[2] About his changing professions from diamond cutting, Masters said in an interview, "I had my own business, but I left that lucrative work because I had a calling for this kind of work. I'm more interested in what I'm doing now than anything else."[7]

Masters set the precedent for the legality of non-medical practice of hypnosis when he was charged with practising medicine without a license at 30-years-old.[2][8] The judge sentenced Masters to 30 days in jail, of which his jailtime was publicized due to Masters' counselling of fellow inmates.[2] Masters subsequently returned to work and continued on for two more years.

Mindfulness meditation[edit]

Masters bought a house trailer in 1961 and relocated his family to Los Angeles, where he founded his California-based non-profit, the Foundation of Human Understanding, which holds the 501(c)(3) designation.[7][9] Masters produced a mindfulness meditation record called, How Your Mind Can Keep You Well.

His meditation exercise has been used by professional counselors and is used to treat stress in the US military.[10] On why his technique is effective, Masters said, "it enables you to become objective, a little bit separate and disentangled from all your troublesome thoughts, emotions, heartaches, fears and traumatic memories – and that, all by itself, is extremely helpful, and actually healing."[10]

Talk radio counseling[edit]

In 1961, Masters started a talk radio counseling show, now called Advice Line, about overcoming stress "spiritually, psychologically [and] emotionally".[7][1] Masters continues to host the show, which has been on the air continuously since its start.[10] It is syndicated across the United States and streamed online.

Never one to mince words, Roy Masters is a man who says what he feels no matter what the cost. Perhaps that's why his program remains, in his opinion, unsponsorable. As a youngster growing up in England, his almost painful honesty, his perception, and his relentless questioning of the adult world's sham standards cast a chilling silence to many a family gathering. Outspoken and guileless, he was called tactless by his elders and it was hoped he would outgrow this annoying trait. He never did.

— William Wolff, Healers, Gurus, and Spiritual Guides, Sherbourne Press

Media appearances[edit]

Masters has appeared on CNN's Crossfire, Larry King Live, The Sally Jessy Raphael Show, The Sean Hannity Show, and The Drudge Report.[11]


  • 1964 The Secrets of Life and Death.  :Devorss, 1964. ASIN B0007EPZIQ
  • 1965 How To Be at Peace With Your Problems. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1965. ASIN B0007I59TM
  • 1970 Sex, Sin & Solution. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1970. ASIN B0006CYIFU
  • 1970 (Roy Masters Speaks On) Breaking Free of Psycho-therapy. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1970. ASIN B0006C2IRA
  • 1972 The Secret of Life. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1972 ASIN B0006XQGMW and as Secret of Life. (pbk) 1977. [ASIN: B000KVIIQM]
  • 1973 Your Mind Can Keep You Well, Fawcett Publications, 1973. (Mass Market paperback: ASIN B000B58D4O) (Essandess Special Edition, 1968. ASIN B0007F6DEK)
  • 1974 (Roy Masters Speaks On) Understanding Meditation. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1974, ASIN B000710BE2
  • 1975 How to Control Your Emotions. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1975. ASIN B0006CJDUA
  • 1975 How to Conquer Negative Emotions (with Mel Tappan). Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1 June 1975. ISBN 978-0-933900-01-1
  • 1976 How to Conquer Suffering Without Doctors. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, June 1976. ISBN 978-0-933900-04-2
  • 1977 Sex, Sin & Salvation. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1977. ASIN B0006XSUVQ
  • 1977 No One Has to Die! Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1977. ASIN B0006COJWM
  • 1978 How Your Mind Can Keep You Well Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1 June 1978. ISBN 978-0-933900-09-7 (Fawcett Crest Book, 1973, ASIN B000MFHWYA)
  • 1979 The Satan Principle: Life Itself Is Hypnosis: Self-Defense Lessons to Help You Cope With Everyday Pressure. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, June 1979. ISBN 978-0-933900-02-8 (Earlier version: Life Itself Is Hypnosis: The Satan Principle: Self-Defense Lessons to Help You Cope With Everyday Pressure, Foundation Books, 1978. ASIN B000NDXFO)
  • 1982 How to Survive Your Parents: And Not Do to Your Children What Your Parents Did to You. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1 June 1982. (pbk) ISBN 978-0-933900-10-3
  • 1987 Eat No Evil (with Dorothy Baker). Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, June 1987. (pbk) ISBN 978-0-933900-12-7
  • 1988 Understanding Sexuality: The Mystery of Our Lost Identities (with Dorothy Baker). Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, rev. ed., February 1988. ISBN 978-0-933900-13-4
  • 1988 Beyond the Known (with Dorothy Baker). Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, Rev. Ed., 1 June 1988. ISBN 978-0-933900-03-5
  • 1988 The Hypnosis of Life: Self-Defense Lessons to Help You Cope with Every Day Pressure. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, June 1988. ISBN 978-0-933900-05-9
  • 1988 The Secret Power of Words: Why Words Affect You So Deeply. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1 June 1988. (pbk) ISBN 978-0-933900-14-1
  • 1991 Surviving the Comfort Zone (with Dorothy Baker). Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, 1 August 1991. ISBN 978-0-933900-15-8
  • 1992 Secrets of a Parallel Universe: Why Our Deepest Problems Hold the Key to Ultimate Personal Success and Happiness. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, June 1992. ISBN 978-0-933900-17-2
  • 1997 Finding God in Physics: Einstein's Missing Relative (with Bob Just and Dorothy Baker). Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, ISBN 978-0-933900-19-6
  • 2001 The Adam and Eve Sindrome. Oregon: Foundation of Human Understanding, January 2001. ISBN 978-0-933900-11-0
  • 2010 How Your Mind Will Make You Well (an updated version of How Your Mind Can Keep You Well). Oregon: CreateSpace, 1 December 2010 ISBN 1456353330
  • 2011 Hypnotic States of Americans: A spiritual survival manual for every American family in a perilous world. Oregon: CreateSpace, 11 May 2011. ISBN 978-1-4609-3902-4
  • 2012 Cure Stress: How Your Mind Will Make You Well. Oregon: CreateSpace, 11 December 2012 ISBN 1481221043


  1. ^ a b "Introduction to Roy Masters". Foundation of Human Understanding. Retrieved 14 April 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g William Wolf, Healers, Gurus and Spiritual Guides (pdf), 1969, 1975, 2005, published by the Foundation of Human Understanding (Originally published by Sherbourne Press, 1969)
  3. ^ a b "British Diamond Cutter Shows Skills of His Trade". Retrieved 19 May 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c "Diamond Cutting art comes to Birmingham". The Birmingham News. 7 September 1952. Retrieved 19 May 2014. 
  5. ^ a b "Untitled". Action. Savannah, Georgia. Junior Chamber of Commerce. 1950's. Retrieved 19 May 2014.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  6. ^ "Roy Masters Biography". Retrieved 15 April 2014. 
  7. ^ a b c Metlova, Maria (1 September 1963). "Between You & Me". Valley News. Retrieved 19 May 2014. 
  8. ^ Bryan, William J. Jr. (1962). Legal Aspects of Hypnosis (PDF). Charles C. Thomas. 
  9. ^ "IRS Letter" (PDF). July 11, 2014. 
  10. ^ a b c Kupelian, David (19 July 2014). "Military praises 'fantastic' new stress therapy". WND. Retrieved 15 April 2014. 
  11. ^ "Call Roy Masters on 'Advice Line'". Retrieved 26 October 2012. Millions have seen or heard Roy Masters on such popular shows as Sean Hannity's WABC Show, CNN's "Larry King Live," "Sally Jesse Raphael," "Crossfire," and "The Drudge Report." 

External links[edit]