After the Alethic retreat in May 2012, I followed the work up with another Alethic retreat in May 2013. Over the intervening year, I had come to understand how I was using my Alethic work, and how it could form the heart of the retreat. And felt with this Alethic retreat I could integrate the areas of my work, teaching, therapy, workshop creation, into a three day process that would help the participant uncover patterns that blocked them from being free.
At the end of the Alethic retreat, I received this very personal, and I found deeply moving testimonial. I wanted to post it out here as I feel that it really shows the impact the Alethic work can have.
I wanted to say thanks to you for such a great weekend. I’ve been noticing how I worked today and through that it was easier to see what has informed me over the weekend. I found myself saying to clients that all they needed to learn was how to remember what we already know. That everything is already here as a possibility but the apperceptions that we live with block that.
And it was weird, that because I got it, I could see them getting it, relaxing into it, listening to their essential being and incredible insights just revealing themselves.
I see what you (I think?) said that maybe there never was a big bang. There maybe was never nothing and then something, just a brain developing enough to begin to unfoldingly bring awareness to what’s always been here. Who knows.
Maybe Life crafted time so it could grow organic instruments from mud and then calibrate them ever more finely until each of their unique tunes resonates as the very prayer of existence. Maybe we just need to unlearn all that we have learned except the practice of being aware. Maybe all the learning was just to get to being aware. That the culmination of all learning, as Kant, Einstein, Bach, Buddha and others found is the opening into identifying with awareness itself. Big Mind.
As I identified as awareness itself, I saw twenty years ago that everything is perfect but now what I realised I still didn’t see is what I had hidden from my own mind. I then get that the twenty years of experiential humanistic therapy training have been about feeling what I originally decided was not right to feel and through that, releasing the somatic and cognitive contractions. And maybe because we’ve done that, others don’t need to. Maybe we have deepened that morphic field so that others can do it much faster. Get back into Big heart mind, I mean.
I see that my original childhood interpretation of events that led me to believe that I (& therefore my experience) was wrong/ insufficient/ incomplete/unloveable was the mechanism through which I resisted my own original voltage of being and looked out instead, to learn to learn (from the outside).
So now, having made the journey down through the body – dissociation to anger to shame to despair to fear, feelings stop being ‘feelings’ and start being energy itself, then attention shifts to sensation, gut instinct, need, the body.
So I drop again to become the ground of Being through Big Body.
And then I am awareness, caring and being which becomes just an awake alive caring grounded instrumentation through which to shine. Big heart mind body. It feels like the three of being, caring and knowing become one awake caring being. As you said, opening the curtains to look OUT from here. I realised there is no-one here. I just objectified myself in order to embody the activating principle through which I could resubjectify myself. Simple! And then today I felt myself move again into my heart AS this being in action, moving into agency, as you said. THIS is how I am here.
And it wont last constantly of course, I will fall and slip and yell and doubt myself and others.
But I know the path so I know how to get back on it.
It was so wonderful to be with people whose interest is the front line of emergent humanity – the conversations about gender, about crowd-funding, marketing, forming unique protocols that stay living, breathing, enquiring lest they become stiff and defended.
To be with you in your incredible generosity. I have to say I identified with you somewhat in being so passionate about the work and tasting the mystery that eating and sleeping are forgotten. I was awake for hours after I went to bed both nights. I would never have been able to keep you up after such an intense day if I hadnt projected onto you a resonant joy in staying until something is brought to ground.
But I am starting to see that as I come back to the belly of my being & bring the subjective of emptiness to the subjective of presence at last and play a new whole note after this journey across the bones of time, there is a primary stage again of effectiveness, & I see a need to include thoughtfulness as a next step into what you call agency.
My trouble is, I kind of missed out the conformist stage, so I have to grow the being nice thing a bit now. I mean I have it but it hasnt ever been the way I showed off.
So thanks again so much Gary. It was lovely to meet up with you again. When I did Integral Life Practice with you in London, the time just wasnt right for me. I was defending some position that I felt safe in.
But this time I was ready to be moved by your struggle with recognising the depth of care and brilliance with which you work and the dedication and agony of your pursuit to allow yourself questioning and receiving.
I felt very moved by the story of Parcival where you cant ask questions. So you’re in a dilemma. You can’t find a model and stay with it, like Ken Wilber, else you lose the ontology.
But you can’t allow yourself to stay in the questioning that IS the intology. If I have understood ontology. What to do.
What you don’t seem to know, as I said yesterday, is this IS what makes you such a great clinician. Bummer eh?
It would be lovely to stay in touch but I’m not sure what I can offer you, especially as I appear to have arrived at the coal face and found myself to be selfish there for a while.
Anyway, if you want to us any of this as a testimonial feel free.
Or ask me for a more appropriate one if this doesn’t feel right.
I’m so pleased I did the weekend.
Best wishes and take care.