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General Category => General Discussion => Topic started by: Leswan on September 13, 2011, 11:57:28 AM

Title: Working in a group
Post by: Leswan on September 13, 2011, 11:57:28 AM
Hi Tony

At the end of the month I will be hosting a development circle in my home. This was prompted from guidance received in a dream where I was told that energy increases exponentially with each additional sitter and that five would be an optimum number.

In a very natural and almost magical way, some really good people who are interested in these things appeared in my life and five of them who take their development seriously have expressed interest and the first session will be later this month.

After reading one of your articles on Lifestream and how it came about which I found fascinating, I wonder if you have any advice. I'm not used to group work - being a bit of a recluse and favouring alone time and introspection to spending time with friends.

Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on September 13, 2011, 02:01:10 PM
Hi – I am really enjoying our exchanges.

If you have five people and you, that makes six – exactly the number I was told was the first link to working in the wider life, and also able to earth it.

I am looking back on my years of being and acting as a sort of figurehead, and there are some things that stand out.

Do not think of yourself as a leader like an authority figure but rather a focus for the people you are working with. You are a part, a small part of something enormous, and yet at the same time you are the enormity – and so is everyone you are dealing with. So magic can happen at any time.

Think of yourself as part of that enormity but not, as the you still in your body consciousness, in control. So do not start out by being controlling.

It took an age to get past the guru attitude.

I think maybe I have said it all to you elsewhere, but here it is again.

The suggestions that follow have arisen from thirty-five years of group work. They have been particularly tested with a number of small groups.

The foundations of this practice rest on an understanding, or a standpoint accepted or taken by the listener and perhaps the dreamer. It is that the person before you is an expression of life. Let’s forget anything about theory, because the very first step is to form an attitude to what is in front of you. Here is a being, a little chunk of life, and at the core of this living being, this living process, a process that has developed a sense of self, is the stuff of life. It is the stuff that makes heroes and saints, mothers, fathers, friends and foes. It is the essence from which arises the whole thrust of life. It is the living core of creative possibilities. If you look around you at what life does, you can see it can be a multitude of things. It can manifest as a lion or a flea, a giraffe or a tree. It is, at the same time, both a galaxy and an amoeba. And here it is in front of you as a living being.

At the core is the freedom to choose

At the core of this being is that freedom to choose — that freedom that life expresses in its multiplicity of forms. Another word for that freedom is potential or creativity. So at the core of the person in front of you lies that potential, that creativity, that problem solving ability that life itself expresses. But perhaps with this being in front of you that freedom, that creative ability, that potential, has got lost, forgotten or buried in some way. So our work as the listener is to help them remember, help them find their way, to rediscover or uncover their creativity and problem solving ability. That creativity and ability to solve problems is always there inside them. That wonderful ability belongs to them. So it is not for us to solve their problem or to find the way for them. It is for us to help them uncover those possibilities within themselves.

Tony  :D
Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on September 13, 2011, 02:43:52 PM
Leswan – Sorry – I couldn’t help remembering this in connection with being a ‘teacher’.

In doing a search through my journal I realise that it was something I didn’t record. What happened was that I had been exploring why my intuition wasn’t better than it was. I particularly wondered why I didn’t develop greater insight into the people I was working with and trying to help.

My intuition at that time was wonderfully acute, so part of the question was why I couldn’t begin to have a deeper and fuller insight into people. I experienced a waking dream in a LifeStream way, and in it I met a man who seemed to be something of an adept or master; a sort of Caucasian white guru type. At first I understood his name to be Faser Dan Li. Then gradually it became Father Li. This I understood to represent fatherly and the name of Faser Dan Li to mean faster than light.

Anyway, this guru figure took me into very large greenhouses. Stretching away into the distance tiny seedlings were growing, most of them about four inches in height. As I watched some youths drove in on cross-country motorbikes and roared around the place. Faser Dan Li did nothing to prevent them. But when they had gone he looked at me and said, “Those are your emotions. They are wild and out of control. As such they could damage the tender growth of souls represented here by these little plants. Until your emotions are much more fully calmed and under control you cannot be given the keys of insight into other peoples being.”

Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Leswan on September 14, 2011, 08:11:34 PM
Hi Tony,

Thanks for taking the time and effort to provide me with such a valuable response. I feel very fortunate to have found your website and your work at this point in my life.

Yes, feeling almost obliged to be an authority figure in the group has been something of an obstacle in pushing on with these plans. I'm not an assertive character type and often feel frustrated that I seem incapable of action in this life, yet I'm also aware of a side of my character that craves the adoration and perhaps even dependence of others. However, my prime motivation for forming the group is to bring some routine to my own program of development and also to provide an arena for me and others to be their true Selves in a safe, non-judgemental place. And of course, prior to that, it was the lesson in the dream that inspired me.

It was actually reading one of your articles (the one where you quote from Matthew: 'where two or more come together in my name...') that prompted me to set aside my strange inner barriers and crack on. So again, thank you.

I like your comments about what lies at our core and your conclusion about our role in group work - it is the perfect antidote to the therapist/client, healer/patient, saviour/sinner paradigm that at times holds us all back.

I'm sure there's a very good reason you chose to recount that particular encounter with Fater Dan Li. I hear you.

Being in control of our emotions is important. In the system laid out in Franz Bardon's Initiation Into Hermetics - a book I'm currently reading, the first exercises are dedicated to the balancing of our character and I do feel this is really important. Have you got any tips?

Thanks again Tony.

Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on September 15, 2011, 11:05:17 AM
Hi – Tips – It is quite difficult to advise anybody because we are such contradictions as humans. We are a wonderful mixture of opposites that need to be acknowledged and not repressed. Emotions are an incredible sense organ and can lead to uncovering areas of self that disciplining ones emotions could never achieve. I see the disciplining of self as mentioned in some paths has left out an enormous amount of human experience. But in expressing ones feelings I see it has to be in a safe and non critical environment.

Where two or more come together – in the name of love and caring – has been a wonderful guide to me. It is an actual power that can be observed, and releases things in us that otherwise cannot emerge.

Of course we are human and need the feelings and support from others. I needed it to feel I was worthwhile and also it was a wonderful way to be a leader to have a group that was the main way of me growing and learning. Anyway it seems to me that you are being led and it will be well. You have a small group around you, and that is a sign that Life has set the seed in motion and it will grow.

Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on September 15, 2011, 01:33:52 PM
Sorry - I am getting old and forgetful.

Tips - to start people off. I think the way it happened to us. We started by asking people to imagine themselves as a dried seed. What shape would they be, what would it feel like, are they asleep of waiting ,and ask them to feel it with their body and mind - don't think it up but see it it will come from sensing their body and feelings. Then ask them to wait in that situation and suggest they are now in warm moist soil and their growth is triggered. Again do not think it up, and it is okay if nothing happens as it is an experiment.

Do this the same with soil, water and sun. Ask them each time to talk about it. This is a good gentle way to let the spontaneous emerge. They have a format and a symbol and that helps. And tell them it is okay to make sounds if they have an urge.

These are just suggestions. And here is a quote from Mind and Movement:

Judith, who teaches a yoga class, describes her use of this approach to LifeStream as follows:

“....I felt as if I were the bud of a crocus. I seemed to be slowly unfolding with difficulty. Not until I fully opened did I feel a great relief. The results of this have made me feel very positive in my outlook, and far happier.....I am a trainee yoga teacher and have been teaching for three years. I have a small class of fourteen students who are keen and attend regularly. I decided to have my students try this to see how they would react. I explained it as well as I could, and the feedback I got was:- A man in his thirties said, ‘I felt I was in a womb. It was very comfortable, cosy and dark. I wanted to stay there. I didn’t want to come away - it was so peaceful. I have never experienced anything like it before.’ He was very impressed. A woman in her thirties felt like throwing her arms around and kicking her legs.  ‘I felt I wanted to give birth and was about to deliver.’ She didn’t fling herself about, but held back. I think it was a pity she didn’t let go.

Perhaps I didn’t explain the whole procedure clearly enough for them to understand that it was entirely free movements. The majority acted out being flowers.  Only one in the class thought it was a lot of ‘bloody rubbish’, her words. She didn’t even try. She thought she would feel stupid acting out a seed. I personally was surprised at the outcome, that so much should happen first time.”

When using the starting point of the seed, or water, etc., we are giving the unconscious a ready made structure to work with. Because we may be unfamiliar with a completely unstructured approach to our inner processes, such a structure gives at least some sense of familiarity and confidence. Even so, some people find they want everything fully described, scripted or choreographed. The very point of LifeStream however, is to begin moving beyond the known in ourselves, towards creative newness and the unexpected. So even if some anxiety is felt, as with the woman Judith describes who defends her anxiety of the unknown by calling the exercise ‘bloody rubbish’, one needs to gradually move beyond such resistant feelings.


Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Leswan on September 28, 2011, 12:58:35 PM
Hi Tony,

I'm short of time right now, but just wanted to let you know that the first meeting of the development group was last night. It was great. Just a meet and greet really, but everybody appears to have a serious appetite for development, so I am looking forward to seeing how this progresses.

Thanks for all your help. I have got hold of "Mind and Movement" and its the next book on my reading list. I can't wait to get stuck in as I seem to be unable to 'be' (or even establish a connection with) my dream components / characters.

Hope you're well.

Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on September 29, 2011, 09:58:59 AM

Matt - That is great news.

As far as things happening I had a hard time. Every so often a spontaneous action would happen - but then I would grab hold of it- so to speak - and try to make it happen and improve it. It was the kiss of death.

What finally happened after ten years of intensely trying all sorts of meditation and 'practices' I thought that whatever it was - God or Life or whatever - I was making it up by having goals and meditating with goals. So I thought that if IT was real, then I didn't need to make it happen or visualise the goal. So each day I sat for half an hour as if waiting for a friend. I knew that if my 'friend' turned up it would be as real for me as a friend calling my name or tapping me on the shoulder. So I simply sat and waited without expectation.

I did that for quite while, but then when it came it really shook me, not in bad way. It was real, and all I had to do was to give up any effort and surrender to what happened.

Have you seen http://dreamhawk.com/inner-life/i-dont-believe-in-god-i-know-god/ ??


Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Leswan on September 29, 2011, 12:17:41 PM
Have you seen http://dreamhawk.com/inner-life/i-dont-believe-in-god-i-know-god/ ??

I have now!

Another very useful article - thanks.

During the session we had on Tuesday the issue of religion did cause some differences of opinion. One member of the group is very religious in a traditional kind of way (this person is also very aware on a non-physical level and has had some amazing experiences) whilst another is very scientific and logical and has a cynical view of religion (and this person also has had some profound non-physical experiences).

I observed an annoying trait in myself that I automatically sought to reconcile the two polarised view points where there was really no need to do so.

But I suppose religion is such a divisive force - the Christian churches in this country appear to have done so much damage to so many people that many people I know hold them in complete disregard. I did too for a long time, until I actually picked up Christian scripture and started reading it for myself, along with other religious and mystical texts from around the world. Then I realised it's not the religion, it's the institutions that adhere themselves to the religions that cause the problem.

The saddest indictment of a Church I have come across relates to a Priest who has a degree of clairvoyance and other mystical abilities but suppresses them for fear of what his bosses would say. For that and other reasons I still question whether our religious institutions are fit for purpose. But anyway, it really doesn't matter, and that question of fitness applies through all our institutions. What did you say to me about not being held back by qualifications that limit me? I suppose it's the same principal at work here. Humans over-intellectualise things and love to exercise control over one another.

Right - to get back to the point of the post...

What you write about the time it can take to 'connect' I find very reassuring. I'm hoping that it won't take me a decade!!

Last night, I started reading Mind & Movement and I asked for what is subconscious to become conscious and to be aware of the tensions I store in my body. And I got a result. I will write it up in another post as soon as I can.

Hope you're enjoying the beautiful weather.


Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on October 25, 2011, 01:20:37 PM
Matt - I like to think things are speeding up - so fingers crossed and you will not take a decade. Remember that I was born in 1937, so there was all sorts of rubbish to wade through. There was all manner of rubbish for me to unload as well, but we have plenty of time.

Did you see the thing on YouTube- we have a lot of time and a lot of opportunities - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SF3KqGpxXvo&feature=related

Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Leswan on October 28, 2011, 10:40:12 PM
That's a great video and I've come across many similar accounts. I've also experienced  a door opening up above me whilst I was in sleep paralysis and a shadow figure appearing from the doorway and leaping into me. As this happened, I relived the moments of my death as a hatchet was embedded in my forehead. I was outside, on a battlefield I presume.
Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on October 29, 2011, 11:14:39 AM
Matt – Thanks for that account, do you have any recollection of the race of you and the man with the hatchet – I presume it was a man?

In LifeStream I lived through a mass of death scenes. One of them I was a prisoner in the First World War. I had been captured by the Germans and my feet were tortured and then I was strapped face down on a bed and buggered by a number of people. After that I felt s if I as a person was also buggered. But then I hit another level of it and realised that it was like lucid dream, and it was all symbols of something I didn’t want to face up to. The First WW came about because my uncle had given me volumes or photographs of the war; I was about twelve at the time. It became a symbol of the first inner conflict I faced, in which I had a terrible battle with my sexuality, and had killed it stone dead. That was the torture, and being buggered was that having not outlet for my youthful sexual feelings they had all turned back on me – as it were I had f*****d myself up. The awful thing to face was that it was what I had done to myself, to kill the youthful self I could have been.

Later I dreamt of finding a dead body in a hole behind a house I was living in. I want to explain this in depth as it is an example of what emerges as you learn to identify with the dream characters. So forgive me for saying so much.

I started by being identified with the house. As such I described myself as one of those typically English suburban houses that are so like all the other houses near them; the great semidetached suburbia. And that was the type of house my parents moved into when they left London. That was my background, my social background. In being the house I realised that it represented the way people remain lost in the way everybody else lives. Going into such houses you see the same thing over and over. They have the same furniture, the same TV and armchair. This is England, and this was the environment and mental world I grew up in.
On exploring my feelings about my parents, I described and felt them as subtle background influences to my present life. They did not actually appear in my dream, and I described them as still existing influences, particularly in the sense of their lives which did not diverge much from the norm. By that I mean they in no way lived alternative lifestyles, not in diet, not in work, not in any way that I could see sexually. Again, here was the background I grew from. The area of their daring was in their marriage; this because the country girl who was my mother had fallen in love with a foreigner and dared to marry him – and he with her.

So in considering my parents they seemed to particularly emphasise that in some way my own life had diverged. This started when I was quite young, about 13 when I began to be interested in yoga. It then became greater toward the end of my twenties when I met G. L. and entered into the experiences of a very different life style.

The environment in which the house stood also had the feel, and deepened my sense of this suburbia as a background to what the rest of the dream was saying.
But it wasn’t until I got into the role of the dead body that any depth of feelings emerged. Almost as soon as I was in the role of the dead body I began to think about and feel things connected with the way I had killed my sexuality as a teenager. Gradually these feelings deepened and I was describing my feeling hatred in regard to sexuality and how the masses were pulled along by their genitals into some sort of conformity and performance. I felt anger and loathing for what I felt at the time were the cattle human beings were. I saw the people lining up to visit prostitutes and how people were helpless and controlled by their genitals - men and women.

I despised and hated them. I also felt repugnance at the way people talked about sex or appeared to enjoy it. It has to be understood that in that period in history in the UK, most of sex was depicted in terms of smut, dirt, animal desire, hidden pornography, or loveless f*****g.

I wept deeply, at times hardly able to breathe, and crying, with the pain of seeing what I had done to myself. I said sorry over and over. I saw that I need not have killed my love and sexuality, but could have expressed it in a tender and loving way.

I explored it and met the pain of killing my sexuality utterly, as well as all the attendant feelings about the common herd who are dragged by their genitals into loveless relationships - exactly what I was dragged into by the fact I had utterly killed all genital sensation for all those years.
I was able to follow the tracks back - once again - to my own actions, killing any contact with my mother. But then being treated like an alien in my own home town, and seeing my peers treat incoming refuges from the war in Europe like shit. As an 'Iti' I identified with them and felt 'different'. And was whipped across my face with a horse whip by a neighbour – me being about 7. Apart from which I seemed to be carrying this desire never to be like the 'herd' from the long past.

The body in the hole was that of the me I would have grown into if I had not murdered that beautiful part of me. In the UK at the time, and in my youth, sex was nearly always about dirt, smut, a quick f***, and hidden but rampant pornography and homosexuality. I wanted nothing to do with it. I wanted nothing to do with the manipulation via sexual desire that was going on around me. But of course, it need not have been like that, but I had no other role model at the time, so I did a terrible thing to myself. Also I lost all respect for my elders as in none of them could I see that gentleness of love. My schoolteachers were thrashing children with rods. The world was killing each other in tens of thousands. My mother had psychologically castrated me out of her fears for me, and my father hardly ever even spoke to me. So I divorced the world, and of course lost that wonderful quality of compassion for the human struggle. In the process I threw myself into the volcano of fighting the forces of life itself. I fought God and won, but was mortally wounded in the combat.

Here I stand, a wiser and hopefully gentler man.

Killing myself hadn't been a painless and easy death. I went and tried to explain some of it to my son, as he was born in the middle of that battleground, to two people who were essentially emotionally dead; though at that time I was fighting like mad to come alive again. Then later I came to check, only to find I was too late. Story of my life; too late to be a decent father; too late too change to rescue my marriage with my wife; too late to deal with my sexual misery to maintain my marriage with my second wife.
No need to counteract any of this. The fires are still burning in me and best to let the heat and smoke out. God, it is humbling to see how we create our life, step by step, and brick by brick. And then often we bemoan our fate instead of admitting our liability. But I have lifted and held that buried body, and taken it into my own that it can know life.

Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Leswan on October 31, 2011, 02:43:15 PM
Hi Tony. Never ask for forgiveness for 'saying so much'  ;). Please always say as much as you can! Thank you for sharing your life and your own experiences with us in such an open and honest way.

I saw the killer as being Asian, from the Far East. I may have been American but I'm fairly certain that I was caucasian. As for the area - there was a lot of overgrowth, but it didn't appear to be a jungle.
Title: Re: Working in a group
Post by: Tony Crisp on November 01, 2011, 11:16:15 AM

Did you get any information or insights into how it flowed into today's life?