Radiant Mind » Activities http://www.radiantmind.net Buddhist psychology and nondual therapy | Peter Fenner Ph.D. | buddhism, nondualism Fri, 13 Nov 2015 01:33:26 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.3.12 Nondual coaching with Dr Peter Fenner http://www.radiantmind.net/nondual-coaching-with-dr-peter-fenner/ http://www.radiantmind.net/nondual-coaching-with-dr-peter-fenner/#comments Sun, 27 Jan 2013 05:05:24 +0000 http://www.radiantmind.net/?p=14673 Nonduality in everyday life

Dr Peter Fenner coaches people who wish to become more familiar with the ultimate medicine of unconditioned awareness. 

Coaching sessions use awareness as the basis for opening to life’s challenges in a courageous and adventurous way.   We use the circumstances of your life as the ground for our conversations, and you learn how to journey the events of your life—your pain, anxiety, joy and celebration—into the vast and blissful ocean of pure awareness. 

Here is an extract from an article by Joel Agee which will give you the flavor of how a coaching session can unfold.

 

Not found, not lost

Extracted from Tricycle (Winter 2008) – Copyright © Joel Agee, 2008

[…]

Seven years ago I stumbled upon the website of an Australian university professor who offered telephone counseling informed by “Eastern Wisdom.” That offer held little appeal, but the professor’s name, Peter Fenner, sounded familiar. Then I remembered: He was the author of an astonishing essay I had read two years earlier with the odd sense, as I reached its conclusion, that the top of my head had been taken off like a lid. Excited though I was at the time, I had put the article on a shelf in the hallway, visible on top of various stray papers, where I suppose it addressed me subliminally, reminding me of its theme every time I glimpsed the cover of the magazine it was in. Now I read it again.

The practice in question was one of simply observing, steadily and without interference, the perpetual mobile of attraction and aversion that prompts most of our actions and supplies the fuel of practice itself. Exposed to the lucidity of simple awareness, practice dissolves into a practice of no practice (which is not the same thing as abandoning practice) where no one is doing or not doing anything, and natural freedom, no longer yearned for, naturally prevails. Something about this made me intensely curious.

I wrote Peter Fenner an email. I asked him if his impossible practice wasn’t essentially what the Dzogchen texts call “non-meditation.” Was he by any chance able to help me to experience rigpa, the nondual nature of mind? Vaguely, as I composed my message, I was asking myself: Would I fly to Melbourne for this? Should I risk a few thousand dollars for the unlikely chance of finding the jewel without price on the strength of this stranger’s assurances, if he gave them? The answer was yes.

I no longer have the response he sent me, but I remember one sentence: “I can show you this over the phone.” I was both skeptical and intrigued, attracted and averse. But the fee he proposed for an hour-long session was modest, and he would pay for the cost of the call. Why not? Maybe I would learn something.

Our conversation began with hello and how are you, do you hear me all right, followed by a brief exchange about the nature of my interest. I told him that I had been attracted to Buddhism for many years, that I believed I had experienced something like kensho a number of times, but found myself still searching, still convinced that something essential was eluding me.

“And what is that?” he asked.
A brief search for an answer: “I don’t know.”
“If you don’t know what it is, how do you know it’s eluding you?”
“I don’t know. All I know is that most of the time I’m living at less than my full capacity.”
“And now?”
“You mean right now?”
“Yes.”
I didn’t know what to say about that.
“Take your time,” Peter said.
Take my time with what? I wondered. But I took my time. We were silent for a while.

What was his question? I no longer knew. What was going on? Were we meditating? Was this a test? Was there some insight I was supposed to have?

A flash of suspicion, hilarious on second thought: that I’d hooked myself up with a Buddhist con man. He’s selling emptiness. But that’s what I want, isn’t it?

Finally I spoke: “This is strange, being silent with someone on the phone. Especially someone I don’t know. I feel I should be telling you something.”
“I know what you mean. Maybe it helps if I tell you that I have no preference for speech over silence. I feel connected to you either way. We’re sharing the silence, after all.”

What a concept—sharing silence on the phone! I could do that. I listened. Then thoughts came, and I listened to those: If he has no preference for speech over silence, does the opposite hold true as well? Maybe I should talk. But why? I have only one question, and he knows what it is. And so forth. This mental gnawing and questing had been going on for so long that it had become automatic, like a tic or a compulsive worry. Now, in the stillness, I saw that, and felt myself drop into a deeper, steadier attention.

“How are you doing?” he asked.
“Okay. But I don’t understand what we’re doing.”
“We’re not doing anything. At least I’m not. Are you doing something?”
“Yes. I’m trying to understand.”
“Oh. There’s nothing to understand.”
Silence.
“There’s nothing to work out either.”
Silence.

I’m noticing now that this bare transcription (I took it down from memory shortly after the call) does not communicate the extraordinary delicacy of the exchange, or its radical difference from any conversation I had ever engaged in. That difference was partly due to its purpose—an inquiry into something that was by its nature not communicable through words. I knew that, and yet here we were on the phone, and he was letting me know at each moment—with and without words—that what I was listening for would not—because it could not—come to me by way of conceptual clarification.

My listening was, consequently, extremely alert—like the alertness one feels when the lights go out at night in an unfamiliar house. You don’t know where the next step will take you. There is no memory, or very little of it, to guide you, so the other senses, which were half asleep while the dominant sense of sight was in control, take over the unfamiliar task of navigation. But I was restricted to the single channel of hearing. The other senses were of little avail. And there was this pleasant voice advising me, in a tone of gentle precision and with an Australian accent, that my expectations were leading me astray.

[…]

Silence. The body was comfortably settled and stable, content. I could sit here forever, I thought. And then: It could be that I’ll never get this. And then, happily: It doesn’t matter. Maybe that was the turning point. The seeker came to rest, but without resignation.

What happened then… but when I say “happened,” it suggests an event, and there was no event. In a way, nothing happened. But this nothing that happened was a revelation. Unconditioned awareness, no longer sought as an object, shone in its own light, a luminous clarity without limit. I was looking out of my window. Trees, a wall, the sound of chimes stirred by a breeze, the humming stillness in the receiver, the man in Australia who had guided me into this miracle—everything was made of the same subtle substance. What was it? Just this—silent, self-knowing awareness. The walls in my room stood as solid as ever but seemed immaterial, as if painted on air. Thoughts came and went. They too were made of awareness. So was the sound of an airplane as it etched a long curve into the stillness and vanished.

And where was I in this? Where indeed! Everything that I normally associated with the sense of “me”—sensations, thoughts, feelings, the body as a whole—was emptied of “me”-ness. The sense of self, still palpably present, was indistinguishable, as was everything else, from this vast, clear, open space. 

Epiphanies are beautiful. Like fairy tales, they suggest the possibility of an “ever after.” The day after that call, I looked around for at least a residue of the bliss I had experienced. It was gone. It seemed I was again at the beck and call of the dualistic mind, believing its judgments, controlled by its fears. But in the course of several more telephone sessions with Peter I realized that something irreversible had occurred. The seeker had disappeared. He had never existed in the first place, but now it was obvious. For forty years I had been searching, never realizing that what I was looking for was this which was looking, and that this which was looking could neither be lost nor found.

[…]

Copyright © Joel Agee 2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Radiant Mind Course 2014 in Portland, OR http://www.radiantmind.net/radiant-mind-course/ http://www.radiantmind.net/radiant-mind-course/#comments Sat, 05 Jan 2013 20:58:48 +0000 http://fenner.tk/radiantmind.net/?p=13954 9-month program

With Peter Fenner and the Radiant Mind coaches

3 Workshops DATES and VENUE?

  • First workshop: March 21-23 – Opening to life, Portland, OR
  • Middle workshop: June 6-8 – Marylhurst University, OR
  • Completing workshop: November 14-16 – Marylhurst University, OR

PARTICIPATION

  • First timers: Early bird, US$1750, if payment is received in full before February 10. US$1950, if payment is received after February 10.
  • Repeaters: Early bird, US$1600, if payment is received in full before February 10. US$1750, if payment is received after February 10.
  • Participants under 26, US$900.

REGISTRATION

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Natural Awakening: Advanced Nondual Training http://www.radiantmind.net/natural-awakening-advanced-nondual-training/ http://www.radiantmind.net/natural-awakening-advanced-nondual-training/#comments Mon, 31 Dec 2012 20:59:07 +0000 http://fenner.tk/radiantmind.net/?p=13956 10-month Nondual Training, 2015
The three 4-day workshops will be held in Australasia

nondual training for teacher and therapist presentationThe Natural Awakening: Advanced Nondual Training is designed for people who wish to expand and refine their capacity to offer nondual awareness as a component of their teaching, coaching or psychotherapy with individuals or groups.

The Natural Awakening: Advanced Nondual Training is based on the synthesis of Asian nondual approaches that has been developed by Peter Fenner. Peter’s approach has been refined and tested over 40 years by thousand of people in workshops, courses and retreats.
His synthesis draws on the most powerful aspects of traditions such Madhyamika, Dzogchen, Mahamudra, Zen and Advaita. These are woven into a form of space creation and facilitation that is refined, minimalist, smooth, and very efficient in the delivery of the pure nondual contentless transmission in an interactive group setting.

A dynamic learning environment

The Training is unique in bringing together people from diverse nondual traditions and lineages. Together we create a synergistic dynamic that radically enhances everyone’s capacity to embody and share nondual awareness within their clients, communities and beyond. The framework for the Training is based on the form of nondual transmission that has been developed by Peter. This framework provides a model and set of distinctions for discerning the subtleties of nondual transmission. The framework is elaborated in a book prepared for the Training.

The Training is not limited to this framework. You will share and demonstrate your own experiments and learning with others in the Training. You will refine your capacity for nondual transmission through fieldwork in which you share nondual awareness through dialogs and contemplation with people outside of the Training. You will learn through your own active engagement and focused feedback from Peter and other participants. The Training is thoroughly experiential. Together we create a depth of immersion in nondual transmission that is unparalleled.

This Training is for

  • Therapists and mental health professionals who want to explore the contribution of nonduality in individual therapy and group work.
  • People who have a solid grounding in a nondual spiritual approach such as Dzogchen, Zen or Advaita and are ready to share their wisdom with others.
  • Meditation teachers who wish to introduce a nondual dimension into their practical guidance and dharma discussions.
  • People who give satsang who wish to enhance their capacity to share nondual awareness and expand the reach of their transmission.
  • Graduates of the 9 month Radiant Mind course who wish to facilitate practice groups based on Radiant Mind resources.

Structure of the Training

The Nondual Training is built on:

  • Three four-day workshops, one at the beginning, one in the middle, and another at the completion of the program.
  • A comprehensive Training Manual.
  • Four individual coaching sessions with Peter Fenner.
  • 10 teleconferences with Peter Fenner and other participants and the possibility to witness other any Nondual Training conference silently.
  • Teleconferences with guest presenters. In 2011-2012, we will welcome: Rupert Spira, Florian Schlosser, Jean-Marc Mantel, Michael Neill.
  • 12 Nondual Coaching Lab phone sessions.
  • A vital and supportive Training Community.
  • Explorations and Practices send each month.
  • Practicing the Training materials in your own environment: the Fieldwork. Optional coaching is offered to participants who need support in establishing a practice group.

Tuition

AU$3700 – Early bird
AU$4100 – Full fee

Enroll with a colleague or partner and you will both receive a AU$400 reimbursement at the beginning of the program. Discount only. Please enter the name of your colleague in the Registration Form.  This discount is limited to one colleague.

Dates

Beginning Workshop: TBA
Middle Workshop: TBA
Completing Workshop: TBA

Download a PDF Presentation of the Natural Awakening, Advanced Nondual Training.

Download the Nondual Training Manual Table of Content.

Apply now!

 

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