So now that you know how I got to where I am, more or less, let me add a few more aspects that strongly influence my work today.
In my previous post "My Teachers" I told you about my teachers and how integral they were to how I experience life and my work today. What I didn't mention is my life long explorations with movement. I always felt that keeping the movements in the body fluid and balanced was an important aspect of being a balanced human being and had a strong influence on our emotional and spiritual wellbeing. To learn ways to teach movement, I attended Gary Kraftsow's (the founder of the American Viniyoga Institute) very first yoga teacher training in 1985 on Maui. We didn't even have yoga mats then, we used beach towels instead. I then trained to be a Feldenkrais pracitioner with Jerry Karzen, who had been the personal assistant of Moshe Feldenkrais. Many years later working with Rameen Peyrow, the founder of Sattva Yoga, brought my yoga practice to the next level. Then three years ago I came across Kaiut Yoga in Boulder. Kaiut Yoga was developed by a Brazilian movement master named Francisco Kaiut. The focus is to teach the nervous system how to be with safe physical pressure, how to learn to be present with intensity and use it as a doorway to regain long lost mobility in the joints. This way of approaching the body is so in line with how I work with the emotional body I decided to attend the teacher training, so I could integrate it into my work. I had been looking for for the right physical component to my work for a long time and I am excited to have found it.
Another aspect often undervalued when we go on a search of self-discovery, is the importance of coming to peace with the fact that we live in a material world.
The material world
The material world, especially money, is a great territory for exploration and our relationship with it has a big influence to how we experience life. Are we rooted in a sense of abundance or lack? I grew up around artistic and highly entrepreneurial parents. My father instilled in me that there is plenty of money around, we just have to find a way to tap into this "money well". And while my life has been mostly focused on self-exploration I never lost a certain talent and ease to create money, especially in real estate. I have always found beautiful spots to build houses and helped create retreat centers on Maui, in Bali, Indonesia, Switzerland, New Zealand and Canada. I sometimes wonder why I didn't focus on that more fully. It came to me so easily. But I didn't do that for a reason. Exploring the nature of consciousness, even though it was hard at times, was what was calling me more. I'm mentioning it here because, in some sense, this is an important aspect of my work. What excites us the most is learning how to harness our most authentic intelligence and our deepest fulfillment. How we participate in the material world becomes an expression of that.
Most of the people who come to my seminars or work with me in private sessions, feel that if they had more of their life under control, they would feel more like themselves and be more powerful and happy. They feel their problems are what is keeping them from really being themselves fully. I don’t see it that way. I feel that our essence is present in all aspects of our being. In fact, our most quirky or painful aspects are often the ones that hold a big part of our individual creative potential. We just have to learn how to access it.
Most people don't really trust existence. We think we have to control it. We have to find solutions and we have to make things work. This habit starts at about six or seven years of age. Whatever the issue, we want a solution; we want a solution; we want a solution. In my experience, in order to find the right answer, we have to slow down and start being present with what is, even if it is stressful. We have to strengthen our capacity to be with discomfort. Once we can do that, solutions will present themselves from a new access point; one that is a lot more creative, effective and fun.
Body, mind, spirit
I believe that in order to make transformations last - In order to create new, more efficient pathways in the brain, we need to tackle old behavioral patterns from all levels: the physical, the emotional and the spiritual.
Once we understand that pressure and discomfort are not hindrances but potential doorways - Once we have the physical, emotional and spiritual skills to let our hindrances guide us into new exciting and free territories, the whole experience of ourselves changes.
To teach these skills - To help others uncover their potential on a all three levels, is one of my biggest passions.
Entering a Highly Intelligent Field
"Here and now" is the only place where we can access, a highly creative and intelligent – as well as delightfully personal – field.
We can let that field guide us to what is right for us rather than approaching life from a mind-, solution- and image-based point of view. It always surprises me how beautiful everybody becomes once they don’t direct themselves from an image of themselves but from a pure and very personal experience of themselves Now.
I love my work. For me it is holy work to be in the presence of people who reconnect with their true nature, most often with natural ease.