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Some recollections of the favor of the 2003 Trance Healing and Self-Hypnosis Course with Dan.

   What can we give to the world? How can we make our lives and surroundings the effects of our actions and    thoughts reverberate outwards ripples expanding into an unknowable future.

   Yet a child may wake up in the middle of the night in 100 years time and cry as a result of some mistake you make    today or laugh because of some skilful response you give to the world. We can't predict wholly the results of our    actions yet generally one can trust that good skilful actions breed good results.

   Our lives have meaning, our actions are full of meaning. The meaning changes and flows with time, is of a
   different line or favors for all of us, but is mysteriously there awaiting the finder. We aren't even required to fully    understand it or intellectually analyze the way meaning directs our lives. The old proverb sawhee kwayse irn fil    baher: Do good, throw it into the sea. One day, when you're drowning, you'll find it.

   So in the summer of 2003 we all worked together, a group of about 20 of us from many different walks of life,
   every Wednesday evening. The object? To deepen our understanding of the deep mind, to use that experience    to bring about personal change and thus to increase our enjoyment of life. These are some notes contributed by    members of that group.

   Sitting here in the rain a year or so later, chilled but cheerful, my life seems drastically changed, and whilst I don't    put that down to the group work, I feel it synchronistically heralded changes to come and helped strengthen me    to weather the storms in my life accompanying these changes.

   Deep emotion and new learning's: Glenda writes about her early experiences of working with a trance partner.    How frequently we meet people without scratching the surface - or paying attention to the depth and
   sensitivity hidden beneath layers of daily usage and reserve stemming from bitter experience!
   Trance teaches us that we can tap into this power of the other when it's most needed - to learn - or receive help.


  Glenda week 5

   When my partner opened her eyes a tear ran down her face. She was smiling. I worried
   immediately that I had maybe done something harmful but she assured me that the
   experience had been very positive but quite emotional. I had encountered the same
   thing the previous week when I had done the exercise with Dan. When I had opened
   my eyes I felt like tears were running down my face. I'm not sure if they were visible
   or not but I know I was crying in a way that had nothing to do with sadness. I don't think
   I've ever cried before for anything other than pain sometimes maybe tears can be quite
   beautiful, a release, a realisation, a truth. I've always been frightened of tears but when
   they flow with a smile they're something altogether different. Something new.

   "Let the mind speak untrammeled by your fears and conceptualizing - let the words and
   image come straight from your own heart."


   There were no doors, just a single rose before me. And no up or down but the rose's petals spiraled inwards life    steps. The journey into the rose was exquisite and delicious. The scent overwhelming, the texture of the    petal/steps sensuously silky. The pink and gold colors and the light falling on the curved forms was delicately    beautiful. I half stepped, half rolled into the golden centre of the rose where a soft golden cushion rested,    surrounded by the stamens and pollen.

   A small buzzing flying insect came to my ear and I knew this was one to listen to. I asked for help with being    vulnerable enough to allow an honest creation to be made. The flying thing buzzed, there were no words (my    mind wanted words) but an overwhelming awareness of the relationship between the rose and the insects came    into my consciousness. I am not going to put into words why that is relevant. I feel a deeper knowing has landed
   in me about this and that is precious and beautiful.


   New skills helping us to see in a positive light - re-evaluating our habitual
   patterns of judgement. Time and again when we take the trouble to really
   pay attention we can find that our first impressions are superficial and mislead
   us into underestimating the people we meet, work or live with. It is a common
   human failing to desperately desire to clarify and label phenomena that we
   simply don't understand, as if naming something somehow gives us control
   over it. This desperation, fear of the unknown, leads to all kinds of dogmatic
   assertions about spirituality, levels of the mind, the meaning of life, even the
   meaning of after life. Better to celebrate the amazing unknown, play with it,
   embrace it, than try to confine it in inadequate pigeon holes of our own
   intellectual belief systems.

   Glenda week 6

   My first partner I had perceived as being shy or timid, however the moment we touched fingers and I felt her
   energy it was not what I had imagined. She was solid and strong and the feeling I got back allowed me to see
   her in a different light. The next partner is someone I’ve never spoken to and I felt slightly nervous of, as there    seemed to be an unspoken defence between us. On looking openly I was immediately struck by the gentleness
   in her eyes. I felt like she wasn’t seeing me or spoke to me as if I was one to laugh in her face, but as we spoke
   and real words came I’m sure both our perspectives changed. We spoke afterwards about how we were almost    mirroring each other’s insecurities or defences, and I realise more in myself that sometimes I may appear hard or    aloof at the moments I actually feel most vulnerable. It’s rare in life to have true connections, silent moments or
   a word spoken from the heart without fear of rejection or ridicule.It feels like all I’m learning echoes all I’ve ever    believed in a very real and grounded way – incorporating so much spirituality and belief and yet without the    constraints of religion or rules. The final exercise I was the subject exploring self-belief. Again all expectations    were lost as I found a new door and ended up on a wild and beautiful beach, which seemed very right to    contemplate the nature of the self. I remember watching fireflies and wondering at their beauty as they shone    with such delicate intensity. It was when they didn’t shine I wondered if they were still near, in the darkness,    waiting for their moment… I always knew they were, just waiting for the right moment to shine. It was believing it    that took the time.


   By skilful use of trance - it is possible to direct the power of the deep mind in a
   transforming way, rather than the habitual way which most have fallen into since
   childhood. It is possible to bring about changes on many levels, physical as well as
   emotional - even spiritual. A lot depends on the sensitivity and readiness of the
   guided as well as the skill of the guide. Also of course, the degree of intractability
   of the difficulties one is dealing with. Best just to try ones best, trust in the mind
  and not make any assumptions.

   Sarah’s account:

   Dan then accepted my request to work with him. He asked me where my pain was, and touched my neck as I    showed him. He then asked me what the pain was like, and I described it to him as sharp. He asked if we had    worked together before and I said no. He then asked me what the colour of the pain was, and I said red, then    changed my mind to green. The reason I changed my mind was because the pain itself as it spread along my
   neck and shoulder was red, but the core site of the pain at the base of my neck was green. He then asked what    colour it should be, and I said white. Dan asked what would make it go from green to white, and I had a vivid    image of a lily bud opening into a beautiful flower, my favourite flower.

   We then stood up. He said that as we were short of time he would just do ‘a brief one’ and was that all right with    me? I said yes, thinking that he was just going to do some ‘surface’ suggestion or something. I felt momentarily    disappointed, but confident that it would be helpful anyway. I was just ready for whatever was coming, and was    fascinated to see Dan work, especially from the point of view of his subject. I felt hungry in myself for change, for    acceptance, and for whatever he was willing to give.

   For the next few minutes I felt like I was watching what was happening to me without any need to control it. Dan    caught me by the back of the neck and hugged me to him. I felt a resistance and deliberately let it go. He then    told me to go to sleep and I DID! It was bizarre! Wonderfully bizarre. I remember falling into him with my whole    body. I remember feeling his strength and my vulnerability. I remember him saying I still had strength in my legs,
   but I didn’t. Each time he told me to go deeper I experienced something similar to the free fall I had had during    meditation, but this felt more physical than that. It felt like my body was falling rather than my Mind. That’s not    quite right, but as close as I can describe it. Sleep came over me in waves. He then took me back to the chair,    and I could feel him trying to adjust the chair back into a recline position. It was stuck, and no matter how hard
   he and someone else tried (I think it was Stuart) they couldn’t move it.

   Whilst this was happening I could feel part of my mind laughing at the comedy of it, but my body remained firmly    asleep – deeper than asleep. I have never felt so asleep and so awake at the same time.

   Dan then told me I didn’t need to do anything, just to rise and fall with the breath, each time falling deeper. I    remember him telling me to spiral down. Much is then blurry. I have vague feelings that he told me more, but I    have no conscious memory of them. I remember that wherever I went to he was there with me. I vaguely    remember feeling part of me holding on to something, and wanting to let go… then I did.

   He then told me to find a dial in my head – a dial for the pain. Then I was instructed to take the dial down to zero    and then back up. I go up to eight, and was aware of what ten would feel like. I really don’t ever want to feel
   that intensity of pain again, and was relieved when he told me he wouldn’t ask me to take it any higher. If he had    asked me to I would have. Why? Because I believed that Dan was going to help me, in a way that no one else    had helped, or could have helped. Because I believed that this was the time I was meant to deal with these    things, I was ready, and so whatever happened would be necessary to effect change. I remember feeling both    the physical and emotional pain as my dial went up – feeling the familiar band around my chest get tighter and    tighter, the sick feeling in my stomach sharpen to a pain, the tension and inflammation in my neck … I don’t wish    to remember… My neck pain disappeared totally, but I was aware that there was still a small tightness in my    chest, which I felt was blocking something. I felt an opening, I saw the ‘bud’ of the future open into a beautiful    flower, but it wasn’t a lily, and it wasn’t white.

   As I looked at it I realised white would have been too harsh, too glaring. I was surprised to see that it was a    delicate pale pink. It was a small, furled flower, not nearly as showy as a lily – small but perfectly formed and    beautifully intricate. I felt an immense rush of warmth andlove surge up from a place deep inside, and I felt like I    was smiling gently at myself. All the time Dan was talking, but I have no conscious memory of what he said.

   Dan counted me back up from three to one, although I could probably have opened my eyes at two, it was
   much more pleasant to take things more gently. I remember him telling me that I would feel ‘back in my body’ in    ways I could never have imagined. As I opened my eyes I found Dan’s eyes looking gently into mine. I felt as    though I had just been born, and this was the first time I had seen anything. I felt immense affection for Dan, a    connection that had nothing to do with teachers or students, but simply of being, and of him being totally
   present with me. He had journeyed with me somewhere that no one else had ever been. He then turned to the    rest of the group, and it took me a moment to readjust. People were asking questions. I felt incredible. My    shoulder and neck felt completely relaxed in a way they hadn’t for twelve years. I didn’t want to move in case    the pain came back, but I knew it wouldn’t. I was looking at all the people in the room, and saw various    expressions on the faces around me. Dan was talking; people were asking questions I think. I was able to ‘feel’
   the other people in the room – their reactions to what they had witnessed – and I felt intense love for each of    them. That sounds really very fluffy, but I can’t apologise. I didn’t feel ‘fluffy’ or ‘airy fairy’ I felt intensely grounded    and stable. I felt completely back in my body, although I had previously been unaware that I was ‘out of it’! That    phrase resonated through me at a deep level.

   I then began to feel an incredible need to cry, but felt socially unable to do so. I felt the knot in my chest again.

   Another word from Dan:

   If we are receptive we can find many teachers who will help us in our lives. The Lama Trungpa described
   teachers like mirrors – in a good teacher you can see yourself clearly – yet just as with a mirror if you look too    closely at the mirror you will begin to see only the flaws in the mirror instead of your own reflection. Of course
   one can learn from a teacher’s strengths but with a compassionate clear and non-judgmental attitude one
   can benefit and also learn from the teacher’s flaws and weaknesses. We are all only human – if you elevate    someone to a pedestal then only you are to blame when the illusion is shattered. Yet some misguided teachers    invite this misplaced respect. Achieving a high level of skill in one area does not necessarily imply high skill in    other areas. It seems a frequent tendency with skilled teachers of martial arts or yoga for example to begin    meddling in ‘spiritual teachings’ where their experience in often very limited. There was a skilled meditation    master who ignored the needs of his body to be healthy – much to the detriment of his own students. Or the    example of another teacher, a superb martial artist whose skill attracted a world wide organization, yet whose    judgement of people was so poor that the organisation was riven with ego struggles and back biting. Many
   more examples spring to mind. The main problem seems to be that of the role of teacher and the foolish feelings    of superiority and fear of ‘losing face’ that accompany such a role. As another famous guru confessed upon
   being arrested for criminal activities ‘it’s such a relief not to have to pretend to be enlightened any more’.

   The learning paradox for me was that although I was in the role of ‘teacher’ to this group it became increasingly    apparent to me how resourceful and skilled the participants already were. Their own mind resources, experiences    and indeed wisdom which they shared with the others in our group were profoundly moving. I think what they
   taught me, reminded me, was how much we all can offer each other. A lesson which has since opened wonderful    doors for me and sustained me in ‘difficult’ times.

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