I’m excited to share the news of my new role as assistant trainer with the Integral Healing Center, Toronto.
This past weekend was our first in a series of ten weekends over the upcoming year with first year students in the training program. Wow, what an exciting group.
First, I want to say that Wendy Fredricks, who has been teaching with the IHC for five years under the tutelage of John Went was wonderful to partner up with. This is her third year teaching the first year students in the program.
She held the space for the students with a strong, confident, ‘mother earth’ energy that flowed straight from the heart. Wendy apprenticed with John Went, founder of the Integral Healing Center.
I could see everyone (including myself) knew we were in good hands. Her gentle nature, with a strong organizational component, was much appreciated.
Within our student body there are Reiki healers, yoga teachers, medical personnel, performers, writers and dancers. All seemed so willing to share and eager to learn.
We entered in silence then we listened and practiced “being with” each other in conscious listening. Pat DeYoung’s article on “being with” was read and discussed. Pat states this “being with” in relational therapy creates a place where we eventually become willing to be with who we are and have empathy for others. We find what’s good for us to do in the world and people to share our lives with. We care and are cared for … whether we’re cured or not.
We explored our bodies from physical, emotional, energetic and spiritual levels as well as fed the intellect with stimulating conversation.
We listened to individual body parts as they shared their messages and concerns. Surprises were revealed. Who knew elbows had so much to say! We offered conscious listening and shared with each other.
Each student had a body template that they labelled with their results adding in the chakras with their own unique creative drawing styles.
Laughter and spontaneous joy shone from faces as students let down, relaxed, felt seen, felt heard and were deeply supported.
A safe, respectful container was quickly built and strengthened as the weekend unfolded.
Students were sent home with a hefty reading list (not all of which had to be completed by October) and an assignment was given to them to complete. It was to write a body paper…the history of my body, it’s agony and its ecstasy. You sit for no less than 1 hour and no longer than 3 hours.
Everyone headed off with their offerings from the alter that we had built together.
This is a poem was part of an offering that I would like to pass on to you. I felt it summed up such a deep journey with such possibility for more.
Now I Become Myself
by May Sarton
Now I become myself. It's taken
Time, many years and places;
I have been dissolved and shaken,
Worn other people's faces,
Run madly, as if Time were there,
Terribly old, crying a warning,
"Hurry, you will be dead before--"
(What? Before you reach the morning?
Or the end of the poem is clear?
Or love safe in the walled city?)
Now to stand still, to be here,
Feel my own weight and density!
The black shadow on the paper
Is my hand; the shadow of a word
As thought shapes the shaper
Falls heavy on the page, is heard.
All fuses now, falls into place
From wish to action, word to silence,
My work, my love, my time, my face
Gathered into one intense
Gesture of growing like a plant.
As slowly as the ripening fruit
Fertile, detached, and always spent,
Falls but does not exhaust the root,
So all the poem is, can give,
Grows in me to become the song,
Made so and rooted by love.
Now there is time and Time is young.
O, in this single hour I live
All of myself and do not move.
I, the pursued, who madly ran,
Stand still, stand still, and stop the sun!
Audrey Jolly MA, is a Registered Psychotherapist with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario and a Clinical Member of the Ontario Society of Psychotherapists. She is teaching at the Integral Healing Center of Toronto.