Helping participants choose their question
The Dyad is a powerful process. When done with love and mutual respect it can transform a person's life. Part of that power is having the right question to work on. That question should channel the participant's attention with the participant's inner space. It must fit them. If the fit is bad the participant will be tempted to work outside their inner space. That means they start contaminating and laying trips on their dyad partners. Not having the right question can also drive the participant away from the Intensive - they lose interest in the process and ask to leave and return home.
Anyone organizing an Enlightenment Intensive must not ignore the help they give participants in selecting their question. The participant is willing to work because it is something they desire to have as part of them. They want that experience. Either they don't have it - or they don't have enough of it. It might even take a lot of hard work to have that experience. So the motivation must come from deep down within them. The motivation must be stronger than the barrier holding them back. If not they will just sit there and go no where.
Suppose day after day they work on love and nothing significant comes up. They want the experience but the desire is not coming from them it is coming from something they have identified with. The desire is coming from the confusion of who and what they think they are. Confusion is not as strong as the real experience - so it just locks up. They get stuck. Where they are coming from is not strong enough to hold the experience they are asking for. Under these conditions they can't get the question answered. They are in fact working on the wrong question. The right question would give them the power of their dyad partner inside with them. Together they would be making progress. Sparks would be flying. There would be electricity in the air.
Lets return to our person working on the wrong question. Maybe the active partner wants to be enlightened. (They don't want the experience that goes with it - they just want to be enlightened.) They want the answer for the wrong reasons. It all locks up. The active partner can't let go of the mis-identification because no one is asking them to do that. Their current question is "Tell me what love is." They "really" want to know because - if they were loved -they would - then - really be somebody. They seem desperate to really experience love. Unfortunately it is all neurotic. They are standing in a place that is not capable of holding the truth, even if they had the right words. They are working on the wrong question.
They are just at an Enlightenment Intensive to pay their dues and to get what is coming to them, so that they can make progress. They want something comfortable. They are in for a big surprise. All the real work - is not done by the leader - or their dyad partner. All the real work is done by them. There is no place to hide - no way to duck experience except to deny it. It isn't coming up.
The standard questions Who/What/Another/Love and Life all have a specific experience they are directed at. The two questions Who/What are directed at an infinite experience - a thoughtless state of the self being really complete. A state so confident that ego is gone forever. A state where the person never gets in front of him/herself.
The first touch of Who/What can leave a person with "The stink of enlightenment." That is because they let go of the ego just long enough to get a wonderful experience but not long enough to avoid blushing. Just 1/100 of a second of enlightenment will change a person's life forever - since the knowledge is absolute. They will always be able to "remember" a part of that experience. Unfortunately to know enlightenment is to want to always live in that experience. To do that one must get all the other questions, maybe add a few more that haven't been identified yet, and then act on that truth as it is being experienced.
To work on "Another" or "Life" or "Love" without having at least some real knowledge of the first two questions - is to work without a place to stand. If you get anything you will have no place to put it.
Does this mean that to facilitate an Enlightenment Intensive - one must have direct experiences on all the questions? I think it helps, but no mater how knowledgeable you are - the participants must do the real work themselves. It is something you can only help with. The more you do as facilitator the less the participant will be able to hold on their own. The barrier is between the participant and the truth. A wonderful facilitator with perfect action and knowledge can lead everyone at an Enlightenment Intensive to an Enlightenment experience. I call that "the bus to enlightenment." The participant is almost a passenger. Unfortunately not many of these participants will be able to continue development without further help. They have now been trained to be dependent.
What ever the participant does - the question they use should be something they think they can do. That may require you to inspire them and give them confidence. If you have not spent some time on the question yourself - this can be difficult if not impossible. What ever you do - don't lie. Don't tell them you understand the question if you don't. To be safe it might be wise to say "I have never worked on that question but people who have tell me they got a lot from working on it." Or you might do what I do when people ask me about the "life" question. "I have been working on that question for many years and many Intensives. I have made many breakthroughs but I don't have the process flat yet. I can still learn a lot more."
There are occasions where people need to work on their own questions. It is not that uncommon. For me "Tell me what understanding is." Was very useful. These are questions beyond our normal list but still valid questions. You must use your own judgement and ask yourself - "can I support this person in their search for truth?" If you answer yes - then support them. If you can not - don't let them attend your Intensive. Be honest if the answer is no. They may return. If you start out lying - you will have an impossibly hard time leading them to truth. All this work is - in the end - about truth - and about a truth which transcends thinking. It is also about our interdependence and our willingness to provide help - help that might not seem efficient in our own opinion.
No matter what you do - in the way of providing information to participants about the question that is right for them - provide it with gentle humility. The Enlightenment Intensive is not about whom leads it - it is about how the participants face truth and work through their barriers. It is about the spiritual event that takes place between dyad partners. Everything else is secondary.
Please send me your comments: Bill Savoie firstname.lastname@example.org
I got some good comments back - from people not wanting to be directly quoted - which said - in effect - that it doesn't matter which question people choose to use. That is because it really only matters what question they use on the first day, when things are really mental. The first day is often associated with story telling and "garbage collection" or dealing with the mind. If people actually do the process - report on what comes up - directly as a result of contemplation on the question - people have enlightenment experiences. It doesn't matter what question they work on. This is because the enlightenment experience is not in the words, concepts, or questions. By the second day people aren't so mechanical. If they stick to doing the process, no matter which question they started with, they start to have experiences.
Unfortunately, my web page was overly complex. I had missed something - so I stewed on the issues and went to sleep on it. When something like this happens to me - I am not good for much else. I work on it night and day until I get the truth - or something that looks like the truth. I woke up - about 4 am - with the following synopsis. All thinking is based on dualism - enlightenment can not be reached by a dual path - it is an inclusive experience. When one has a short enlightenment experience one lets go of thoughts - has the experience and then looses enlightenment with a new thought. The new thought is the error that brings you down - yet we tend to label it as the enlightenment experience. We convince ourselves that "XXXX" or what ever was the great experience, as if it's "discovery" was important. We don't see it as an error.
Therefore which question used - who/what/another/life/love - is the stuff of dualism - and as such it is an error. The inclusive experience has no separation. Since most of us - in the past 37 years have only taken Enlightenment Intensives now and then - we don't have full sustainable every day enlightenment - long periods of no dualism - we have little trips - little pops - that go off and remain as memories. We have classified all the thoughts that bring us down - as if they were "solutions" to enlightenment - road maps back to the sacred place. There is of course - no "logical" road map that can be intellectually followed to enlightenment.
We are so conditioned to "think" and to be an individual - it is hard to let go - and to let go without a "reason" that connects to another reason - and on and on. We also want to "give" to another this great gift - enlightenment. It actually becomes trip laying - a logical path to enlightenment. All the "Thinking" was well intentioned - but still wrong. The truth is less serious. Just get them to do the process. Be Gentle and stay out of the way with any "map" to enlightenment.
So where they start is not important - that they start is. What ever interests them is a great place to start.
With great respect and love for all my fellow travelers.. Please keep telling me the truth. For those who know better - don't let me lead you down the garden path. For everyone else - keep a bit of skepticism and be willing to take on your own responsibility. Love to you all ...Bill Savoie
In the words of another:
"Do not think that the knowledge you presently possess is changeless, absolute truth. Truth is found in life and not merely in conceptual knowledge. Be ready to learn throughout your entire life and to observe reality in yourself and in the world at all times."
Thich Nhat Hanh
Please send me your comments: Bill Savoie email@example.com
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