Students often ask some version of the following: “When I leave your office, I feel wonderful; I am lighter, without pain and fully integrated ! But then I gradually go back to how I was before. How do I learn to find it on my own?”
The answer, of course, is awareness. But how do we explain this so that the student will understand, and how do we teach so as to emphasize awareness? What if we were to provide the student with an answer along the lines of: “When I am working with you through touch, with my hands I guide you into a different experience of being you; one more fully integrated and less inclined to and bound by habitual patterns of behavior. When this experience is fully integrated in your consciousness in a given moment, you have an expanded sense of awareness of what might be potentially available as your experience of being you, given what you are doing. And you might associate this newly acquired experience of freedom with my touch, my hands. If this is so you might try to recreate the experience I helped make viable. However no experience is meant to last or be recreated. What lasts is what is learned from your experience, even though it was your new experience that led you there. Experience and awareness go hand in hand, and these hands are closely held. Awareness born from experience is seamless and experience is often confused with awareness. In the moment of the ongoing present, conscious integration of your new experience awakens possibility of something potentially valuable and meaningful to you as a person. Though, when I take my hands away, and I will take my hands away, and you remember they provided you with the experience and you will retain that kinesthetic experience of freedom for a while, and you might wonder how you might achieve this kinesthetic experience on your own– however, as teacher I do not want to leave you spellbound by your new experience. Rather I promise to leave you with your awareness. You own that. My hands belong to me, I take them away, but I will not take away your awareness, this is yours to keep. It is more precious than the physical changes. And when you move into the next moment in your life with this awareness, something is learned. That you keep forever. The experiences that led to your change in awareness is now who you have become.
In this workshop, we will explore awareness, and teaching awareness. What does it mean to us personally and to our student, and what does it mean to us as teachers, to work always keeping in mind our promise to leave the student with their awareness?