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My practice philosophy

I hold the following ideas and orientations close to heart.  These are for you to get a sense of how I approach my work (and the rest of my life).  

In one sentence: 

Each of us can attune to an uninjured, disentangled subtle core of our being and to a dimension of innate inner-wholeness, from which we can relate to ourselves, our emotional pain and others with the spaciousness, compassion, patience, trust and understanding necessary to allow a healing, deepening and opening process to unfold naturally and gradually.

 

In more words

**Each of our experiences of inner-transformation is a unique, unpredictable unfolding.  We each have different needs, sensitivities and inclinations.  The following is simply an outline of how I orient toward this work: 

With practice, each of us has the ability to attune to and gradually live more rooted in the core of our being.  This subtle core, as we call it in the Realization Process, is experienced as an uninjured, disentangled core.  I emphasize experienced because that is what is important... more so than the various lofty stories and definitions we've heard to account for this experience.  

 

Our innermost core is a portal to our innate wholeness, and a profoundly safe and supportive "place" from which to inquire into and be with our emotional pain and confusion.  This innate wholeness is experienced as a dimension of self that is not altered by the changing content of experience (thoughts, emotions, sensations).  It feels as though we were born with this quality of self and can attune to it as a profound resource and source of well-being when working with difficult psycho-emotional material. 

 

The subtle core of our being is disentangled core in that it is not perturbed or altered by the changing content of experience.  From this core, we experience our deepest contact with ourselves and others, as well as a true distance from others and our environment.  We are neither moving towards nor pulling away from other people or stimuli.  We experience ourselves as centered in our being and in the world, able to allow the content of experience to flow without our gripping onto it.  Yet we still have the capacity to respond to what we experience.  In fact, we have the capacity to respond consciously and without taking on undue responsibility for another's experience.  This is because we are not entangled with the content (the other person's emotions, a demand, a harsh stimuli, scattered energy, etc.).  Because we are not entangled, we can experience true compassion, sustainable empathy, and clear insight.  And, from this core, we have the choice to either allow into our being what others or our environment are "putting out" (emotions, energies, expectations, etc.) or to allow it all to pass right through the space.  This "space," which we call fundamental consciousness in this work, is experienced as a spacious stillness pervading our own being and everything in our environment.  It is also experienced as who we are most authentically... beneath, so to speak, the veils we put up between ourselves and what we experience: constructed identities, self-images, and conceptual overlays.  Inhabiting our bodies as fundamental consciousness actually allows us to truly honor these identities and concepts rather than deny them, fixate on them or try to transcend them.  We can see them as they are, without the need to change or fix them.  Again, we are not entangled with them.  By not being entangled on this psyho-energetic level, we can enjoy the fruits of the other kind of entanglement -- our interconnectedness and interdependence with all of life. 

 

Fundamental consciousness is subtler than and pervades both matter and the energy field.  It feels like an unwavering, steady presence.  This very subtle dimension of consciousness is also experienced as having the qualities of awareness, emotion and physical sensation.  That is, the "Grounds"of these three aspects of life, upon/within which all changing contents of awareness, emotion and sensation arise and move.  When we inhabit our body as a blend of these three Grounds (as fundamental consciousness), we are radically open to life.  We can think clearly, feel emotional responsiveness and sense deeply all at the same time.  We experience our internal wholeness and can receive another person in their full experience.  This work is in no way about transcending our humanness.  The only thing we are transcending (and also including) is our fixed, abstract sense of ourself.  In doing so -- in shifting from an abstract experience of life to a direct, lived experience -- we only become more human... more in touch with our love, power, voice, understanding and sexuality.     

Okay, so that's all lovely...truly 

 

Now, what does it all have to do with your healing process? I would say everything.  When we can attune to and embody fundamental consciousness, we can heal at the deepest level.  Our mental and emotional pain and confusion have a place to rest, and we experience profound inner-resource.  From our disentangled core, we can relate to our pain and confusion with the spacious, compassionate presence that it needs in order to release and integrate.  A key aspect of this healing process is that from this very subtle dimension of ourselves we can see into and work with the most subtle dimension of a trauma-based holding pattern.  We can gain conscious access to its actual purpose (its adaptive, protective function, which has likely long outlived its purpose) and release our grip on this self-protective pattern.  In my view and experience, working only on a more gross level (e.g. through gross level movement or emotional relief work) can be very helpful and very important, but is not going to allow our holding patterns to unwind at their root.  When we heal at this deep level, we quite literally gain more access to our being.  More of us is here, integrated and available.  Because our body is the instrument of our experience, as we reclaim more and more of our body, we experience more of the richness and fullness of life.    

Whew.... okay.  Now...

Practicing Realization Process exercises and engaging in emotional healing work require time and energy.  It is our birthright to live as sensitive, deep feeling people, and it is a beautiful challenge and joy to come to know ourselves more and more deeply...to embody our wholeness.  However, it is important to note that committing to meditation practice and inner-healing work comes with no guarantees.  As important (if not more important) than simply practicing meditation and turning towards our emotional pain is how we do it... our attitude towards ourselves, our efforts and the practices we engage in.  Forcefully trying to shove ourselves into our body or impatiently trying to fix all the broken pieces of our selves is not going to help (it will surely hurt), though these efforts can be disguised as meditation practice and inner-healing work.  To actually benefit from the time we spend in meditation and to experience the fruits of turning inward and meeting our emotional pain, we learn to:

  • Cultivate self-compassion...as a starting place

  • Be gentle with our tender hearts

  • Honor the intelligence and adaptive nature of our protective patterns (the trauma we carry)

  • Allow vulnerability (in a safe container)

  • Listen to the wisdom of our bodies

  • Remain open to feedback and invite what is unconscious to rise to consciousness 

  • Honor our unique sensitivities and needs  

  • Learn how to ask for forgiveness, and ask for it again and again 

  • Cultivate profound patience

  • Start with the attunement to our innate wholeness rather than our fragmentation   

  • Trust in the gradual, organic nature of healing and transformation 

  • Ask for support when we need it 

  • Take responsibility for our own experience 

  • Hold paradox and complexity

  • Find the courage to speak our relative truth... "how it is" for us

  • Cultivate a loving inner-voice 

  • View our ego not as something to banish, but as a survival function to which we can be in right relationship 

This is a tall order.  Support, in my experience, is essential.  

 

 

***To read more about some of the above ideas, check out my post titled "My (extended) practice philosophy"under Writings. 

 

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