Mindful practitioners are naturally oriented towards the present moment experience of their client. They are readily curious and available to engage; their minds are spacious and open to new experience. They can welcome “a beginner’s mind.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Being with another person’s emerging process requires us, as depth and process facilitators, to set aside our own judgments and preconceived ideas about the person in front of us, so that we can see our clients with new eyes. It requires the strength and the courage to surrender our personal agenda, in order to attend to one larger than our own.
Practicing mindfulness during our PSEN training weeks, both through meditation and through “Presencing” with practice clients, our trainees learn to both relax and steady their minds enough to become empathically attuned, present, curious, and interested in what is actually happening, in the here and now, with themselves as well as the client’s unfolding process.
Mindfulness based meditation has long been a part of traditional Buddhist teachings. Mindfulness has been extensively investigated in the last 20 years by neurological research scientists throughout the world. The large body of evidence makes it clear that mindfulness practices shift brain chemistry, enhances well-being, and allows for a clearer perception of reality.
While our PSEN training is focused on depth and process facilitation, the practice of mindfulness meditation is a foundational aspect of our training, one that significantly enhances facilitation skills.
Through the repeated practice of mindfulness over time, PSEN trainees strengthen their capacity to be empathically present and attuned with their clients, while at the same time being able to differentiate from as well as tolerate their clients’ emotional intensity.
Through the practice of mindfulness, our trainees acquire a keen sense of curiosity and inquiry; as well, they develop a tolerance for waiting, while staying in the unknown with their wonderings about the client.
Mindfulness practice allows practitioners to disengage from their own emotional reactions, allowing them instead to develop a more neutral, witnessing presence, which both helps them gain insight into what is happening, and supports the safety and well being of the client.
Finally, we believe that through ongoing and regular mindfulness practices, both through meditation, and by paying attention to life’s unfolding from within their clients, our trainees develop a keen interest in and respect for the deeper mysteries of life.
We can make our minds so like still water
That beings gather about us that they may see,
It may be, their own images,
And so live for a moment with a clearer,
Perhaps even fiercer life because of our quiet.