The pursuit of the theme;
"Complete Presence in
has led me to some incredible teachers.
It was in acting
classes, studying the Meisner Technique
in the 1990's, that I started to realize that many of the skills that I
did NOT have as a medic; like consistently being fully present, and
knowing how to begin, utilize and then break off connection with other
human beings, were actually tied in to muscles that could be
strengthened through acting and improv games.
Through Jose Angel Santana, pHd's classes in Santa Barbara, I first started to understand how important these concepts and approaches are to healthcare professionals.
In 1998 I attended my first Network for a New Culture Summer Camp. It was an experiment in Intimacy and Community, and I had no idea of how it would move my life into a completely different direction.
It was there that I got to
spend about a week with Joseph
Chilton Pearce, Bruce
and Patch Adams (pre-movie).
What I learned from that experience as a whole helped
me to synthesize the answer to what had become my life's question: "How
can Healers learn to keep their hearts open and do their work when most
everything in the healing professions is geared towards the
of maintaining a distance between them and the people they work with?"
I spent years
assimilating what I learned in those two
weeks (OK, I'm slow!).
Another huge world opened up for me, that of intentional community. What we once called "communes" have evolved into incredibly eclectic approaches to living sustainably -- in connection with each other AND our environment. A wonderful resource to learn about what you can do TODAY to foster community is the Intentional Communities.web site.
At that Summer Camp I ended
up painting a bookcase with a guy who reminded me so much of Bob
Newhardt, I had to giggle. His name was Geoph Kozeny and for
me and literally thousands of others throughout the world, he was the
Johnny Appleseed of the movement!
Geoph spent the last years
of his life documenting many communities across North America. As a
resource and a tremendously thought-provoking work you can't do better
than picking up his Masterwork DVD, "Visions
While there, I became
in assisting with their monthly, personal growth workshop, Naka-Ima, progressing to be one of
the first in their Kipuka (Mastery) program. I went on to have
extensive experience in "The Practice" and "The Expansion" two courses
offered by Jamie Campbell and Deborah Riverbend (the originators of
Naka-Ima) who took Naka-Ima's concepts and supercharged them as
agents of healing.
HeART of the
Healer, which is
essentially the synthesis of my lifetime in the
owes its development to that fertile time in my life and those highly
That workshop then became my teacher. I committed to put myself through the same grief I asked of my students: to stretch myself in the art of self-expression, which has lead me to my extensive writings in the healing arts, music and photography.