Ralph Zuranski’s In Search of Entrepreneur Heroes Interview By Sharif Khan
Sharif Khan: We have today Ralph Zuranski, a former special features writer and photographer of the Coronado Eagle Newspaper, and creator of the “In Search of Heroes™” program for high school students. It’s a program for high school and college students teaching them first how to be healthy and think clearly.
Sharif Khan: It will then teach how to apply the secret Internet and offline marketing techniques that generate massive amounts of extra income for those individuals and their businesses that deserve recognition as local Heroes, so they can personally fund the most valuable community programs. So, it’s a real pleasure to have Ralph Zuranski on our program today.
Ralph Zuranski: Thank you, Sharif!
Sharif Khan: You’re welcome. Let me just ask you, tell me a little bit more about your “In Search of Heroes™” program.
Ralph Zuranski: It’s a program that I created back when I was a writer and photographer for the Coronado Eagle. I was disgusted by the Heroes like the rock stars, the sports stars, the movie stars or people that are basically just into money and fame. They don’t really give kids a good example of what it is to be productive human beings.
Ralph Zuranski: When you focus on material possessions and fame and the people’s lives are broken, they are in shambles, on drugs, involved in illicit sex; it is such a devastating aspect of people’s lives. I just thought we really need to look at who the real Heroes are.
Ralph Zuranski: From my experience, over my lifetime of being involved in professional sports, working with movie stars and working with incredibly important people, I’ve found that the real Heroes are the moms and dads. They are the people in their families that take their time and sacrifice to help and protect and serve those that they know that are in their family circle.
Ralph Zuranski: My mom and dad just recently had catastrophic illnesses last year, and I was the only child that decided to drop what I was doing, come back and live with my parents and help take care of them. I’m thankful that my wife came with me.
Ralph Zuranski: Now that I see how hard it actually is to step up to the plate and take care of your parents when they have catastrophic illnesses and how great are the sacrifices, I realized that the real Heroes are the people that are making a big difference in the lives of the people within their own families.
Ralph Zuranski: I thought that people really need to know this. That’s when I created the Heroes program, to take high school kids in search of local and national Heroes to just ask them, “Who are the Heroes in their lives?” Almost to a person, even the movie stars and important people in the community all said it was their moms and dads, or the coaches and teachers.
Sharif Khan: Well said. What is your definition of Heroism?
Ralph Zuranski: My definition of Heroism is similar to yours. It’s somebody that serves and protects, somebody that sacrifices their life in a way that enriches the people in their own family as individuals, or groups of individuals.
Ralph Zuranski: You look at some of the great spiritual leaders like Gandhi or Mother Teresa, or John Paul, the Pope who just recently died. Those people gave up their own personal sacrifice of wealth, material possessions and fame to serve others.
Ralph Zuranski: I firmly believe just as you do, that it’s those people who serve and protect those in their community, that make a great sacrifice to make a difference, a positive difference in the lives of other people. They are continually working to make the world and other people’s lives better, the best that they possibly can by actually giving action on their part and showing that it’s not “do as I say” but “do as I do”.
Sharif Khan: Yes. Did you ever create a secret Hero in your mind that helped you deal with life’s difficulties?
Ralph Zuranski: Well, you know I really did as a child. I had tremendous health problems. I was born three months premature and it just seems that I was addicted to sugar, and I was eating crap all day. My teeth started rotting in my mouth at an early age and every time that I went into the dentist, I would have to get four or five fillings. It got to such a point that I absolutely would bear the pain of having the dentist drill on my teeth without going for the Novocain shots.
Sharif Khan: Oh boy!
Ralph Zuranski: Just because it was so painful. To help me deal with that, I created a character in my mind; I didn’t know who it was but just a character. I was always hearing him say, “You can do it! You can do it!” because eating sugar all the time, I was extremely depressed.
Ralph Zuranski: Plus, I was having severe problems with my hormones because my blood sugar was constantly going up and down and I was using up all my cortisol to basically just keep my blood sugar level up, so I didn’t die and go into a coma. In the process of doing that, what happened is that my body was utilizing all my sex hormones, especially the testosterone just to keep my blood sugar level up and burning it into cortisol.
Ralph Zuranski: So what happened is that I was the 99 pound weakling. I was like the midget in the class. I was sick all the time, I was depressed and suicidal. I just hated how I looked; I had a big nose and big ears. I was of Polish heritage, so I got all the Polish jokes.
Ralph Zuranski: I would look in the mirror and tell myself, “I hate you! I hate you! I wish you were dead!” It was that special character that I created that helped me get through life. It was all the way through high school and college that I was depressed. I didn’t know why, and it was just because of a hormonal problem. There was always that super Hero there that kept me going.
Sharif Khan: It sounds like quite the ordeal. What were or are the qualities and attributes of your secret Hero?
Ralph Zuranski: My secret Hero was positive all the time. My Hero was always telling me, “You can do it! Don’t give up! Even though you failed, never give up! Everything is going to be okay! Don’t focus on the negative. Just continue to be positive and just try. You are only a failure if you don’t get back up and try again. You are going to fail a lot, but if you learn from your failures, you continue to find how to have a better and more successful life.”
Ralph Zuranski: So, my character really gave me hope and said, “You can do it!” There is that one piece of life that always was there to keep me going in times of difficulty and depression, fear and self worthlessness.
Sharif Khan: That’s great. So it was a positive influence.
Ralph Zuranski: Absolutely.
Sharif Khan: What is your perspective on goodness, ethics and moral behavior?
Ralph Zuranski: That’s a good question. That’s a hard one, because there is a spiritual aspect to that which is so great. I think it has a lot to do with what type of faith a person has. That determines a lot what their ethics are and what they consider is moral behavior.
Ralph Zuranski: As a Christian Catholic, I read the Bible a lot and I basically follow the teachings of Jesus, as far as laying down your life for others and doing good to others. My favorite quote is, “How do you turn evil to good?” By loving your enemies and doing good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you, and praying for those who spitefully use you and persecute you. I think that’s the only way that you can really turn evil to good, is by providing good first, rather than by returning evil for evil.
Ralph Zuranski: I think that in every culture and every faith, of all the great teachers, that was the idea, the Golden Rule of doing good to others as you would have them do unto you. Doing it first, rather than expecting the world to do good to you first. It’s like priming the pump, you have to give first. You have to put something into the system before you will ever get something out of it.
Sharif Khan: That’s right. What principles are you willing to sacrifice your life for?
Ralph Zuranski: I think, like you, that I’m willing to sacrifice my life for those who I love and I’m willing to sacrifice my life for freedom. If there’s an opportunity to sacrifice your life, to lay your life down for somebody that you don’t know, I think that I would be willing to do that because I trust in God.
Ralph Zuranski: I know that by living my life and trusting in Him and searching for what it is that He wants me to do, that if there is a situation where I had to sacrifice my life to save even one person, that I would actually do that because I know it’s a part of God’s plan.
Ralph Zuranski: Rather than trying to figure out from day to day just having the positive attitude which I think is important, I just trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding. Acknowledge Him in all my ways and know that He will direct my paths.
Ralph Zuranski: My paths are completely different from His, and it takes a lot of faith each day to wake up and having no idea what God wants you to do. But just living from moment to moment and allowing Him to guide you with events that occur completely out of the view of what you had going on in your own mind of where you want to go, and doing it willingly, gratefully and thankfully.
Ralph Zuranski: A lot of times you don’t really want to do, but thanking God for that, and knowing that you are serving a greater purpose rather than serving yourself.
Sharif Khan: When was the lowest point in your life, and how did you change your life path to one of victory over obstacles?
Ralph Zuranski: My lowest life point was after I turned away from God in high school. I went to a Catholic high school, and there were no girls there. Most of the time, I just thought about girls and sex. It was right about the time that Playboy came out.
Ralph Zuranski: I started taking vitamins and working out when I was 13 and that completely changed my life. It actually started my path from being a 99 lb. weakling to becoming a muscle bound anomaly in the universe. I was your typical nerd with a big nose, horn rimmed glasses, and plastic pen carrier, but I had muscles.
Ralph Zuranski: When I started taking vitamins and working out I suddenly had this huge surge of testosterone. So I was thinking, “I have to get a date! I have to go out with girls! I’ve got to find a girlfriend! I’ve got to have sex!”
Ralph Zuranski: So that was in direct opposition to what I had learned in Catholic school as far as being a virgin until marriage. So I went to UCSD which is sort of a revolutionary college. It had a lot of communist on the staff.
Ralph Zuranski: You had to take a socialist program, Humanities, that talked about the reason why you were screwed up is that you needed to rebel and you need to get involved in mind expanding drugs and sex.
Ralph Zuranski: Just to rebel against what your parents told you and what society was telling you. It was the time of the Vietnam War and so I was disillusioned with what was going on and so I figured, “The reason why I’m screwed up is because I’m not having enough sex, drugs and rock and roll!”
Sharif Khan: That was in vogue at that time, yes!
Ralph Zuranski: I decided I would go down that trail and I still remember the first day that I didn’t go to Mass. I decided I would go surfing instead. I was sitting out in the ocean and it was the time of the movie Jaws and I just kept on thinking about this big giant shark opening up its mouth and just consuming me, like the whale consumed Jonah.
Ralph Zuranski: Sitting out on my board as punishment for turning away from God, and when nothing happened like that, that sent me on a spiral on getting involved with sex and drugs and rock and roll, and psychedelics.
Ralph Zuranski: It completely evolved into a situation where I was smoking pot all the time. I was living with a guy that was into coke and all the horrible things involved in freebasing coke and I saw all that. Ultimately it led me to a point where I was just so depressed and I was ready to kill myself. I still had that problem with depression. Even though I had money, sex and drugs I was just so depressed.
Ralph Zuranski: The idea of training a child in the way they should go and when they are old they won’t depart from it. I know my parents were praying for me and spontaneously at the lowest point of my life when I was ready to kill myself, out of the blue, subconsciously I started saying the Lord’s Prayer and Hail Mary.
Ralph Zuranski: That seemed to put me in a situation where I was able to find my relationship with God as either accept the free gift of salvation or just kill myself. Thankfully God gave me the grace and the faith to make the right choice.
Sharif Khan: That’s a powerful story. Do you have a dream or vision that sets the course of your life?
Ralph Zuranski: You know, I do have a dream or vision and that vision is to make the world a better place, especially for young people. I know my childhood, teenage and college years were so miserable because I didn’t know why I was so depressed, and why I had so many health problems and I was sick all the time.
Ralph Zuranski: I was plagued with one problem after another problem. It had to do with my mindset, as far as what my thoughts were and just my health problems. So I spent the last 30 years researching why I felt so bad and what was wrong with me.
Ralph Zuranski: I finally found out at the age of 13 when I started taking vitamins and working out. I went from being a C and a D student to an A student almost overnight. I got a scholarship to Catholic high school. It was at 13 that I dedicated my life to the study of health and human awareness, and trying to discover what are the ultimate limits of human performance in all areas.
Ralph Zuranski: It took me 30 more years of studying alternative medicine and learning about all the great leaders in alternative medicine that it created incredible therapies that helped people overcome all the types of diseases and health problems that I was suffering from.
Ralph Zuranski: My dream and my vision is the “In Search of Heroes™” program, to share that health knowledge and share the mental processes that people have that will help them become such great successes, a lot of times over unbelievable odds, even like you.
Ralph Zuranski: When you are addicted to alcohol it’s basically self suicide or making a change in your life. My goal is to help people realize how they too can be Heroes in their own life and make a real difference in the lives of others within their life and within the society.
Sharif Khan: Do you take a positive view of setbacks, misfortunes and mistakes?
Ralph Zuranski: No, I don’t always do that. I know I should, but having suffered with depression for so many years it seems that every day I am always battling fear, doubts, thoughts of mistakes that I’ve made, the misfortunes that I’ve had, and the setbacks that I have had are almost paralyzing. It’s just incredible.
Ralph Zuranski: The only thing that I found that can help me do that is by using a rubber band on the wrist and snapping myself big time. The other thing is praying to God and asking Him to remove those. I see those as temptations from satan that is trying to destroy my path and doing the work that God set out for me.
Sharif Khan: Would you say that you are an optimist?
Ralph Zuranski: Not all the time. I know how important it is to have positive thoughts, but just in being a situation where you are taking care of your mom and dad and they are both near death. You don’t know what is going to happen today.
Ralph Zuranski: You have to change your parent’s diapers and do all kinds of stuff that you wouldn’t normally realize you had to do. Just how much you have to sacrifice in your life. My wife and I can’t go anywhere by ourselves anymore, because somebody always has to be there. It is hard. Sometimes it can be depressing.
Sharif Khan: Do you have the courage to pursue new ideas?
Ralph Zuranski: Sometimes I do and sometimes I don’t. It’s really hard sometimes to know when you change the direction that you are going and to pursue new ideas. There is going to be a lot of people that will try to prevent you from doing it.
Sharif Khan: Right.
Ralph Zuranski: So you know that you are going to experience a lot of pain in the process of doing that. Some of the time it’s the people that you really love and love you that don’t want you to change, because they are comfortable with the way that you are.
Ralph Zuranski: When you strive to overcome the negative aspects, it’s really difficult to make those changes, because those people get angry and they are going to punish you for doing that. It’s so crucial just to make those changes and to have that courage, because you are going to have to pay a price to change your life.
Sharif Khan: That’s right. Were you willing to experience discomfort in the pursuit of your dreams?
Ralph Zuranski: I was and it seems that I’ve been ten years ahead of my time as far as researching health at the age of 13, and telling people about vitamins and exercise. I’ve been there just trying to get people to realize that Heroes are our moms and dads and people around us.
Ralph Zuranski: It seems that a lot of the time people aren’t interested in your dream because they’ve got their own dreams. It’s hard to get people to realize that you’ve got a dream, and you are trying to do things. Most people seem so wrapped up in sex, drugs and material possessions and personal power.
Ralph Zuranski: Just having what society says they should have makes them happy that they see on television and all the advertisements. It’s so frustrating sometimes just to realize that most people don’t share your dream and that you just have to continue on with your dream and never give up.
Sharif Khan: Yes. Did you believe your dreams would become reality?
Ralph Zuranski: You know, I do believe my dreams will become reality. I look back to 1992 when I first started the Heroes program. I realized that was something that God wanted me to do. I just saw the huge amount of work it would take, and the massive amount of investment of time and money.
Ralph Zuranski: I’ve been funding it with my time and money for almost 13 years now. Just the sacrifices that I have had to make, during those times I’ve had to basically live out of my car because in pursuing my dream and doing everything I could to work with people that are ethical and have integrity.
Ralph Zuranski: A lot of the people that have taken advantage of me, I have had to break those connections. Even though it was a way that I was making a living, I had to cut back on my life just to pursue my dreams. But I always believed they would come true and I was willing to pay the price to make them become true.
Sharif Khan: So you have overcome a lot of obstacles. How are you able to overcome your doubts and fears?
Ralph Zuranski: That’s a daily effort to overcome doubts and fears. Every day I wake up, I have both doubts and fears. I have doubts about what I’m doing, if it’s ever going to become successful, whether I will be able to do this full time, or whether it will generate enough income so I can give the program life and have it go to every community. It takes money to be able to do that. It’s hard to generate income when not everybody has accepted your dream as ready to be supported.
Ralph Zuranski: Fear, everybody has fear. Fears are things you perceive that aren’t real. I think that people that are really true to what’s going on realize that those fears are something that are part of every day life and every body has them.
Ralph Zuranski: The most important thing you can do is do the things that help you over come fear. Do those things that you do fear.
Ralph Zuranski: There is a certain aspect to that you can fear a rattlesnake. Fear is good to a certain point, but the idea of fear of failure and fear of loss and fear of rejection, those are things that everybody experiences.
Ralph Zuranski: Those are things that you have to take a positive view and just think, “I’m going to do this because it is part of attaining my dream.”
Ralph Zuranski: I know that a lot of times that it’s not personal when people reject me, when the things I hope will happen don’t happen.
Ralph Zuranski: It’s just a part of learning how the way things work. It’s like Thomas Edison, how many times he tried to find a way that worked, to create a light bulb. He did it thousands and thousands of times.
Ralph Zuranski: I think that as you continue on, ultimately you build a momentum and you start doing small things better. You start doing things right and associate with people that are doing the right things and you learn from them and they become your mentors.
Ralph Zuranski: They teach you the right ways to do it. Your fears diminish because you have greater success in doing things the right way.
Sharif Khan: Great advice! Ralph, who helped give you the will power to change things in your life for the better?
Ralph Zuranski: Well, back when I was thinking about committing suicide, even though I had material possessions and money, drugs and sex, it brought no happiness. If it wasn’t for God offering me that free gift of salvation, eternal salvation and giving me the grace that I needed to make the right decision, I would be dead.
Ralph Zuranski: I would be dead or in some alley like you when you were going down that trail. So first, I have to say that God gives me the willpower to change things in my life because I’m selfish and I want things for myself.
Ralph Zuranski: It’s so hard sometimes just to sacrifice your life for others, especially if it’s a big sacrifice of wealth and material possessions when you have to take care of others who are sick in your family.
Ralph Zuranski: I think the other person who has given me will power is my wife, even though we have been through a lot of difficult times over the past ten years because she’s had severe health problems herself.
Ralph Zuranski: It has taken ten years to find out why she was going through premature menopause, with all the hormonal problems that she had. We met Dr. Borkin over the last five years who is an expert in hormones and understanding how the hormonal process works.
Ralph Zuranski: If I just would have known when I was a kid, and if I were a parent and knew about the hormones in my kids and how major the impact is, and how you can balance those things out, it would have made a huge difference.
Ralph Zuranski: So I say that first God, and then my wife supporting me no matter what and dealing with the problems in her life, but always saying, “Yes, Ralph, I know that you can do it” and always having faith that I could do it.
Ralph Zuranski: Dr. Borkin coming into my life and showing me what I needed to balance out my hormones so I could have victory over the hormones to cause depression.
Sharif Khan: Do you readily forgive those who upset, offend and oppose you?
Ralph Zuranski: No, I would like to say that I do but it’s easy to hold on to hurts and people that oppose you all the time, especially when they are in your family and a lot of times, it’s on a daily basis. It’s so hard to be forgiving and forgive people instantly and just not hold grudges. I know I really find that in my relationship with my wife…
Sharif Khan: Your wife is your life!
Ralph Zuranski: She is my life. I think everybody has battles in their marriage. Satan is always warring against the marriage and the family, because it’s the foundation of our spiritual life and society. There are so many things at war against marriage and doing the right thing. Loving your wife as if she were your own body and not harming her in any way.
Ralph Zuranski: It’s so easy when you have all these things going on; financial problems, health problems, just all the things that can go wrong and do go wrong. Everybody tends to hold the people they love the most responsible and just blame them.
Ralph Zuranski: I do my best. I would love to say I forgive people instantly but thank God for the rubber band! Snapping my wrist, it’s better to give myself pain than to give others pain.
Sharif Khan: Do you experience service to others as a source of joy?
Ralph Zuranski: I look at Jesus Christ as the greatest example of laying his life down for people that didn’t deserve it. I pray the Rosary every morning and just think about the Stations of the Cross.
Ralph Zuranski: I’m just so amazed at what He did for us and so grateful for the great gift of eternal salvation that I look at the suffering and pain that He went through to gain that for us.
Ralph Zuranski: Just awestruck, and I’m so amazed to know that there is nothing that I can do to gain eternal salvation. That everything that I do now is basically just in gratitude for the great gift that He has given me. So yes, I do experience service to others as my greatest joy.
Ralph Zuranski: I do want to be one of the greatest servants of all because I know that’s the only way that in the afterlife that I can be one of the greatest in the Kingdom.
Sharif Khan: What place does the power of prayer have in your life?
Ralph Zuranski: I pray every day. The first thing that I do in the morning is I go through all my prayers and I pray for just about everybody that I know. It takes about a half an hour to do all that. Then I say the rosary and contemplate just the Stations of the Cross and the Mysteries of the Rosary.
Ralph Zuranski: I just think how incredible it is that an entire almost supernatural event changed the way humanity looks at the world and looks at others. I think that the reason I love Christianity is the power that God puts in the lives to cherish every human life and every person no matter what their faith.
Ralph Zuranski: Just the commands He has, to love others as ourselves and to lay our lives down for others. It’s beautiful because Christianity doesn’t put individuals at odds with others, even if they don’t believe the same way that they do.
Ralph Zuranski: It’s the idea that you love others no matter what. You have to love first and accept their beliefs and walk a mile in their shoes just to find out what they believe. So many people just out of hand reject others, condemn others and want to kill others because they don’t believe the same way they do.
Ralph Zuranski: I believe that it’s time for compassion, it’s time for love, and it’s time for being longsuffering. It’s time to look for the reflection of God in the lives of every other person. I don’t care where they live or what they believe.
Ralph Zuranski: I believe there is humanity in every person. Every person is made in the image and likeness of God and that we need to respect that and cherish that.
Sharif Khan: Do you maintain your sense of humor in the face of serious problems?
Ralph Zuranski: I do, sometimes. I think it’s important to have humor in life, but as with everybody else, I definitely have my weak moments. Some days I am a pretty humorless person, and not a very fun person to be around.
Ralph Zuranski: I think that humor can change a situation instantaneously, the ability to laugh at your own selfishness, your own greed or doubts, or to find something funny in an event that so tragic. I think that a lot of times it’s important that you either have to laugh or you have to cry.
Sharif Khan: Laughter can be quite healing.
Ralph Zuranski: That is so true.
Sharif Khan: Who are the Heroes in your life?
Ralph Zuranski: Well, you know there are a lot of Heroes in my life. There are so many Heroes, just the people that I have met on the Internet that I interviewed as Heroes, like yourself, who are making the world a better place.
Ralph Zuranski: I think that both my mom and dad are Heroes, struggling with the difficulties that they have right now with their poor health. I think probably one of the greatest Heroes is my dad, even though he’s pretty much paralyzed on one side.
Ralph Zuranski: He’s trapped in diapers, and trapped in a world where he has no control over his life. I’ve never heard him say a negative thing or complain, or get angry at anybody.
Ralph Zuranski: How embarrassing it must be not to have any personal privacy and to be totally dependent upon others, and not just be upset at that, but be kind and compassionate and accept it. Being able to accept that situation and do it graciously, just having a positive word to say, and having a smile. That’s so incredible.
Ralph Zuranski: I truly believe that my wife is my other greatest Hero after my mom and dad, because she is here helping to take care of my parents. She’s changing the diapers, sacrificing her life being here helping my family when her family back in Dallas is going through their own trials and tribulations.
Ralph Zuranski: How hard it is for a mom to be away from her grandkids and from her family. Talk about sacrifice, that’s what I really believe sets Heroes apart, serving and protecting others. A lot of times sacrificing what they want to do in their lives for the benefit of others.
Sharif Khan: How did they make a positive difference in your life?
Ralph Zuranski: Just by their example of sacrifice, love for others and compassion. It’s something that, I’ve never been a real emotional person, and I’ve always been sort of a right brained person and goal oriented. I don’t have many emotions.
Ralph Zuranski: Learning and seeing what emotions are, and how powerful they are in a person’s life and how good they are. They give you peaks and valleys. They make life interesting other than just totally dedicated, “I’m on a mission and I’m going to succeed.”
Ralph Zuranski: It forces you to look at the people around your life and I think the most important thing that you can do is minister to the people that God puts in your path. The only way you can really do that is by showing your emotions and experiencing your emotions, and having those emotions of love, hate and anger. Just be willing to go through that.
Sharif Khan: Who do you feel are the real Heroes in our society today?
Ralph Zuranski: The real Heroes are people that help others. My acronym for a Hero or actually Heroes is somebody that Helps Enthusiastically, Responsibly, Optimistically, Exceptionally, Socially and or Spiritually.
Sharif Khan: That’s great.
Ralph Zuranski: Anybody can do that at any moment in time. Anybody can step up to the plate and help somebody, and instantly become a Hero. Gregory Alan Williams was one of the first Heroes that we did who was the black cop on Baywatch.
Ralph Zuranski: He actually saved an Asian man’s life in the L.A. riots as he was being beaten to death at an intersection. Gregory Alan Williams went out and pulled the guy out of the car even though the mob was there trying to kill him.
Ralph Zuranski: They were getting ready to turn on Gregory Alan Williams and the Asian guy and a Mexican guy stepped in and took the beatings so he could get that man that was injured to the neighbors. They were able to get him to the hospital, and he survived.
Ralph Zuranski: Gregory Alan Williams said there is a little bit of good in the worst of us, and a little bit of bad in the best of us. No matter how bad a person is, they can step up to the plate and become a Hero.
Ralph Zuranski: Even in a moment in time they can change somebody’s life by doing good. I think that there are Heroes all around us. Anybody can be a Hero, no matter what their status in life is, no matter what their attitude is.
Ralph Zuranski: Just as you believe that it is important to give people a good example of what real Heroes are. Those are the people that lay down their lives for others, that aren’t so focused on material possessions and fame or driven by green or lust.
Ralph Zuranski: They are just experiencing the pleasures of life, trying to make the world a better place by helping people that are in their lives.
Sharif Khan: I love your acronym for Heroes. Why are Heroes so important in the lives of young people?
Ralph Zuranski: Well, young people, everyone was young at one time or another. When you hit that flood of hormones, it’s such an interesting time when you have different peer groups based on physical ability, financial wealth, just appearance that everybody gets stuck in a different category.
Ralph Zuranski: From my experience of being sick all the time and just being a 99 lb. weakling and one of the smallest kids in the class and being a nerd, it was an incredibly hard time in my life. So, the real Heroes in my time were the people that I read about in books, people that had overcome incredible difficulties and trials and tribulations.
Ralph Zuranski: I was so rejected as a kid that I spent most of my time reading books. I loved the stories about average, every day people that became Heroes by doing something that nobody thought they could do.
Ralph Zuranski: The only way that young people can live lives of Heroism is by modeling their lives after people that are successful, people that have done great things.
Ralph Zuranski: If they can find those people in their family or in their neighborhood or church, or at school as a coach or a teacher, or if they don’t have access to that, some of the greatest people they can read their biographies.
Ralph Zuranski: They can become Heroes just like they are for you in your secret group of Heroes that you have chosen that are in your dreams, that when you meditate that they are there giving you good advice.
Ralph Zuranski: I think that if you don’t have real life Heroes in your life that you can find them in books, you can find them in comic books like I did. You can find them virtually everywhere.
Ralph Zuranski: Without those examples and those models, they just don’t know what to become. They don’t know how to get there. They don’t have a path charted out. I know for myself, I was just wavering in the wind. I didn’t know which way to go.
Ralph Zuranski: A lot of my Heroes were fictional characters and they were good at killing evil invaders from space and horrible creatures and stuff like that, but they didn’t have a way of telling you how to be successful in life.
Ralph Zuranski: Unfortunately, in a lot of our Heroes in the comic books these days, there is no black and white, no good and evil any more.
Ralph Zuranski: A lot of the Heroes that are promoted these days, I would say they are tragic characters because they don’t know what is good and what is evil.
Ralph Zuranski: They have all these self doubts, but the good thing is that a lot of the time they do the right thing most of the time.
Sharif Khan: Who do you think are the Heroes of today that are not getting the recognition that they deserve?
Ralph Zuranski: Well, of course it’s the moms and dads first of all. The moms and dads are laying down their lives for the kids. The kids don’t even realize just how much sacrifice it takes for the moms and dads to go to work every day, and buy food, clothes and love the kids, and take a lot of the guff that kids give them.
Ralph Zuranski: Anybody who takes care of somebody that’s sick in their family is not only a Hero, but a saint. The teachers, the coaches, the spiritual leaders, the priests, the pastors, all the different faiths, all the people that take that time and sacrifice fame, fortune and material possession and free time to make a positive difference in the lives of others.
Sharif Khan: How do people become Heroes?
Ralph Zuranski: It’s similar to what you say, serve and protect. It’s the people that sacrifice part of their time or their money. I think the most important thing is that they sacrifice their time.
Ralph Zuranski: It’s the most valuable thing that they have. They help others, whether it’s people in their family, community, I don’t care who they help. When people help others, they are basically making the world a better place.
Ralph Zuranski: I really love your analogy as far as the darkness that society is trapped in, seeking after greed, the darkness of pornography, of lust, of power, of material possessions. Most people get so caught up in that.
Ralph Zuranski: We look at our politicians and we look at a lot of the people, sports stars, movie stars, all those people are the worst examples for young people.
Ralph Zuranski: The sooner they realize that there is a Hero within themselves, that they just learn what Heroes do. They can be a Hero every day. Just look at their moms and dads and people within their family, and the good things they can do.
Ralph Zuranski: Not be so concerned about themselves, the hardest thing in the world for people to overcome is selfishness. Being depressed, being upset and not choosing what you have, just being in a state of always wanting other things.
Ralph Zuranski: The only way that you can overcome that is serving others. It’s so crucial to not be concerned about yourself, but be more concerned about the people around you. I think that’s where you overcome depression, unhappiness and sorrow by helping others, because it’s such a great joy to help others.
Ralph Zuranski: You can see how paying it forward, by doing random acts of kindness, like you said, it can be so transformational in this world. If you help one person, you are helping yourself and you are helping the entire world.
Sharif Khan: Where are Heroes located?
Ralph Zuranski: They are located everywhere. They are every person that you come in contact with. I actually believe that angels walk this earth and there are good angels and bad angels. I believe that angels are there to miraculously help you.
Ralph Zuranski: They are like the ultimate spiritual Heroes that step in and intervene in the most miraculous ways. I believe that people can find miracles occurring in their lives on a daily basis, if they just look for it and realize that when they do good things without expectation of good in return, that God actually rewards them. People don’t believe in the Christian God, just the universe will reward them.
Sharif Khan: How does it feel to be recognized as a Hero?
Ralph Zuranski: It feels great. I created a character Hero when I was in the skate board industry called Captain Biorhythm. I was so impressed with biorhythms and how I charted the ups and downs of life.
Ralph Zuranski: Everybody does have ups an downs and to know that there are cycles that you can actually watch and you prepare yourself with your attitude and just never give up when you see different events occur, because that’s part of life, ups and downs.
Ralph Zuranski: I was doing research on accidents and injuries in the skateboard parks and in the top skateboarders back in the late Seventies. I saw there was a real correlation in accidents and injuries, just as the researchers in Japan saw that you can cut accidents and injuries by at least 70% by just warning people to be more cautious on certain days.
Ralph Zuranski: I created my character Captain Biorhythm in a slalom race, where you can go down a steep hill through cones like skiing on a skate board. I had never done it before and I thought for sure I was going to kill myself and have a severe injury.
Ralph Zuranski: It was on Halloween, all my friends told me, “Yeah, yeah, why don’t you do it Ralph? You can do it.” I decided I would create a Hero called Captain Biorhythm that was able to overcome his fears and realize that there was a potential for accident and injury.
Ralph Zuranski: I got one of my girlfriends to create a Heroes costume out of a woman’s velour dress, it was like a tunic. It said Biorhythms on the top and had a big blue cape. I was trying to get the idea of wearing skateboard safety equipment across to the skaters because I saw so many horrific accidents and injuries.
Ralph Zuranski: So I got all kinds of elbow pads and knee pads out of the motorcycle industry. I had a helmet and I had a big giant blue cape, and I showed up at the skateboard event.
Ralph Zuranski: Unfortunately on my way up there my car conked out and so I had to change in my car and I hitchhiked and got a ride from a girl named Robin Logan who was on the Logan Family skateboard team.
Ralph Zuranski: She gave me a ride up there. I showed up there and I was in my costume and unfortunately the skaters had lied to me and nobody else was dressed up in a costume but me.
Ralph Zuranski: So, boy did I feel pretty stupid and on my first skateboard run, it was in a costume and it was a day when the wind was blowing incredibly strong and my cape billowed out behind me.
Ralph Zuranski: I had this chain that was around my neck. As I started going down the hill, the cape acted like a parachute and at the same time the chain was strangling me as I was going through the course in slow motion.
Ralph Zuranski: All the skateboarders were standing on the side and I stopped and they thought it was the funniest thing that they had ever seen.
Ralph Zuranski: From then on, I was Captain Biorhythm no matter whether I was dressed in my costume or not. I got a lot of guff for that, a lot of ridicule and people recognized me as a Hero then.
Ralph Zuranski: But now just being recognized as a Hero for trying to make the world a better place and doing something about it, it really is a great joy.
Ralph Zuranski: I’m very grateful that people think that I am a Hero because ever since I created that character back in 1976, I’ve been using that character as a way to overcome disappointments, sorrow and health problems and setbacks.
Ralph Zuranski: Captain Biorhythm is my alter ego. He’s my right brain, he’s the spontaneous, intuitive, the emotional. He’s the one that is the character that brings balance to my entire life.
Sharif Khan: Why do you think that you were selected for this unique honor?
Ralph Zuranski: Well, you know, I was selected because I honored other people first. I honored other people as Heroes first and looked for the good in them, and the good things they were doing.
Ralph Zuranski: I was doing it without trying to get money or make money in the whole process. I was doing it for the pure joy of trying to make the world a better place by focusing on the good that people do rather than the negative, and realizing that if you help enough people get what they want, you will get what you want too.
Ralph Zuranski: My ultimate dream would be to generate enough money with this program that I would be able to do this full time and be able go to every community and help people set up a program “In Search of Heroes™” in their community and honoring all those people that deserve to be recognized.
Sharif Khan: How will being recognized as a Hero change your life?
Ralph Zuranski: You know it already has changed my life. That other people think that I am a Hero confirms and reaffirms all the years and all the sacrifices that I have ever been through since I created Captain Biorhythm back in 1976.
Ralph Zuranski: It’s been a hard road, and I can’t tell you how embarrassing it was to wear my costume around. For one year, I lived as Captain Biorhythm. I wore my costume to work every day, the costume I designed went through a series of evolutions.
Ralph Zuranski: Ultimately it became a test of people’s brain integration, whether they were right or left brained dominant.
Ralph Zuranski: So when I was director of a chain of health spas in charge of health research, family fitness centers, I wore my costume to work every day to test people’s brain hemisphere. I had my car painted up as the Biomobile and it had Captain Bio on it.
Ralph Zuranski: Everybody kept asking me, “Gee, who is Captain B10”, just this thing that I did had the reverse consequences. I was ridiculed, but still, I persevered and went to the comic conventions in San Diego and went up on stage.
Ralph Zuranski: I remember one time when I was doing the first Heroes program, I had a young man, stay with me and we went on In Search of Heroes in the comic industry, the comic convention at Sea World and Disneyland.
Ralph Zuranski: I was up on the stage; I was going to have three stages where I had Ralph Zuranski on the outside.
Ralph Zuranski: Underneath that costume I had Captain Biorhythm, and underneath that costume I had Captain Bioman, where you integrate the right brain and the left brain.
Ralph Zuranski: Bio means two, so when you join your hands together that integrates both your right brain and your left brain, and people do that naturally when they put their hands together in great joy or great sorrow. Some people pray, it’s like integrating the person instantly.
Ralph Zuranski: At that time the people that were running the convention turned the lights off when I took my first layer off. They thought I was probably a pervert and that I was going to expose myself. I intended to expose that there were three aspects of human beings, there is your right brain, your left brain, and anybody can be a Bioman or
Ralph Zuranski: Biowoman when they join hands together and they form a circle of completion and become friends with themselves. Both brain hemispheres are working together rather than trying to destroy one brain hemisphere.
Ralph Zuranski: Most of the time our worst enemy is ourselves, and our dominant brains, either the left brain that is the logical, judgmental, mathematical, verbal skills. It’s the one that’s competitive and the judgmental one.
Ralph Zuranski: It internalizes all the negative stuff that people have told us over our lifetime and a lot of times, destroy our self image and make our lives the worst ever.
Sharif Khan: How are you making the world a better place?
Ralph Zuranski: Well, I’m doing it through the “In Search of Heroes program™”. I’m looking for people like you to create a Mastermind group of people that want to make the world a better place.
Ralph Zuranski: Ones that actually are good examples that have overcome trials and tribulations in their lives and have basically sacrificed wealth, fame and finances just to basically make a difference in the lives of other people.
Ralph Zuranski: I firmly believe that God is not going to judge us for how much wealth or material possessions, or how much power that we gain in society, but how we treated the people that He put in our paths. As we went through our lives, we either do good or evil to those people.
Sharif Khan: Yes. Do you have any good solutions to the problems facing society, especially racism, child and spousal abuse, and violence among young people?
Ralph Zuranski: Absolutely. That’s what the Heroes program is all about, to help people become friends with themselves and learn how to love both of their personalities, their right brain and their left brain.
Ralph Zuranski: That’s the idea of creating the Bioman and Biowoman, to get people to realize they truly have the ability to become Heroes by first realizing that they have two personalities in their brain and becoming friend with those personalities.
Ralph Zuranski: Then just loving both of those personalities and accepting that once you become an integrated brain, you can do tremendous things in teaching kids and everybody how the brain actually works to process information.
Ralph Zuranski: In our schools, it’s mostly left brain teaching that destroys the creativity, and suppresses the creative part of the brain that has super memory and super creativity, that’s just suppressed in the schools.
Ralph Zuranski: My goal is to teach people how to find their own Hero within, to become friends with both of their brain hemispheres and become Biomen or Biowomen. Then to learn how their brain processes information, and present that information in a way that people can become successful and teach them the aspects of business.
Ralph Zuranski: They will know that by working correctly, by using their God given abilities and being able to process information in the right way, that they can be incredibly successful. Learn how the tax system works so they can save the money that they have and pay the least amount of taxes and basically give back to society by becoming successful financially.
Sharif Khan: That’s great. If you had three wishes for your life and the world that would instantly come true, what would they be, Ralph?
Ralph Zuranski: First would be that people would love themselves and love others. The second would be that there would be peace on earth. The third would be that people would realize that there are alternate ways of attaining incredible levels of health and well being rather than the conventional pathways of chemicals and drugs.
Ralph Zuranski: People would realize that we don’t have to pollute the world to basically achieve the wealth and leisure that we have in the United States and other countries. If people would just realize that there is a natural way to learn, a natural way to heal, and a natural way to take care of our world.
Sharif Khan: That’s great. What are the things that parents can do that will help their children realize they too can be Heroes, and make a positive impact in the lives of others?
Ralph Zuranski: The thing that they can do is first love themselves, love their kids and give a good example of what parents should do just by showing their kids through example on how it is to live a life that serves others.
Ralph Zuranski: They are laying their lives down for others by feeding and clothing the kids, making sure they get a good education. Just by being that example and being willing to be the parents, to provide discipline and show the kids that selfishness is not the way to go and that there are certain things that they should actually do.
Ralph Zuranski: So the parents have to provide discipline, they just can’t be their kids best buddies and want the kids to be their friends. They have to be willing to accept the anger and a lot times hatred of the kids and teaching kids the right way to go.
Sharif Khan: Well Ralph, what’s next for “In Search of Heroes™?”
Ralph Zuranski: Well, next is to do the In Search of Heroes book that I’m working on right now, the answer to In Search of Heroes on the Internet. The second book will be In Search of Heroes in Medicine with all the answers kids need to realize, and parents too, that can help make such a big difference in the health and lives of themselves and their kids.
Ralph Zuranski: If we can teach kids how to love themselves, how to utilize their brains to their full power, how to be healthy and successful in business and actually provide a vehicle that they can be successful in publishing and promoting the eBooks they create about the Heroes in their community, we should be able to generate enough income to help people in the communities fund their own programs to make their communities better than they could ever be.
Sharif Khan: That’s great! I can’t wait until the book comes out! Again, that’s Ralph Zuranski- In Search of Heroes.
Ralph Zuranski: Thank you so much. I really appreciate your doing this, Sharif.
Sharif Khan: Thank you.
Sharif Khan is a professional speaker, freelance writer, success coach, and author of the inspirational leadership bestseller, Psychology of the Hero Soul. As President of Diamond Mind Enterprises, an organization devoted to helping people live heroically, Sharif has dedicated over ten years research to the field of human development and leadership.
Based on his research, Sharif provides inspirational keynotes and leadership development seminars that empower audiences to unleash their inner-hero potential for higher success. He is a much sought after public speaker and has spoken to a wide-range of audiences including executives, entrepreneurs, educators, and students.
Sharif Khan is on a mission. His vision is to inspire the world and make a positive difference in people’s lives; to help create a global culture of heroes and responsible citizens dedicated to promoting peace and prosperity in the world. For his pioneering efforts in teaching people how to become heroes in all areas of their lives, Sharif was accepted into the In Search of Heroes “Heroes Hall of Fame,” a program for recognizing the heroic contributions of top copywriters, marketing experts, and media professionals.
In addition to his public speaking, Sharif is also a successful freelance writer helping companies and individuals develop a wide-range of content through his professional copywriting services. He frequently writes articles on Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and Success, and serves as a book consultant to authors.
After graduating with an honors B.A. in Psychology from York University, Sharif served as General Manager of a Bestsellers Bookstore Franchise, followed by over five years of various sales and marketing roles within the I.T. industry, and is a former Director of the MetroActive Writers Club.
Sharif resides in Toronto where he is a recognized expert in his field. He has shared his Hero message to tens of thousands of people around the world through his speaking, tele-seminars, articles, media appearances, and highly acclaimed Hero Soul newsletter.
For more information on Sharif’s service offerings, call 416-417-1259 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with your specific requirements.