In two of the predominant teachings of Christ Mind given for this time, A Course in Miracles, and The Way of Mastery, there is in common a directive given to students. Based on the idea that only love is real, the directive is to seek within for the unloving thoughts (hardness, rigidity) still "living in the mind," and to bring them to love for correction, clarification, and healing.
This can be seen as the evolution of the old adage "know thyself." In the advanced forms of the modern teachings, a new depth and power of inquiry emerges, through a variety of teachings that empowers the student to transform in ways rarely available in the past.
Perhaps most powerful of all of these is a Living Practice from The Way of Mastery known as Radical Inquiry.
Reflecting on Inquiry processes (from ACIM, WOM, RI, Byron Katie, etc) -
Commentary by Dave Schock
This is some of what works FOR ME when using inquiry (just sharing ONE teacher/student's experience here, as an example) and have been most essential in my work with myself, and with clients.
The basic pattern as I see it is :
1) create a safe space though talk and introduction to breath, and teach the client or self how to return to this space ( though focusing back on breath and feeling states when "upset" occurs )
2) Have a dialogue with the client/self, inquiring into their experience and the cause of it
I use the model "Emotions cause behavior, thoughts cause emotion" --Ultimately, for states of fear, anger and sadness (or isease/stress/conflict/upset etc), the is an unloving thought that has not been brought to light, and correcting this through inquiry is the healing--(though feeling states may need to be navigated first). The thought may be conscious or unconscious, and if unconscious, the access through breath is key.
A facilitator client joining is ideally a Holy Relationship entered for the purpose of creating healing, and can take MANY forms. The Byron Katie work is exceptionally fast and helpful, but does not access (in my experience) the deeper unconscious (and larger) unloving thoughts that RI can do through breath. ACIM also (in the "New Beginning" ch 30 in the text) has a brilliant and incredibly helpful inquiry process which starts with the realization that one can at least admit they are not feeling well (when upset) and therefore they would be better off if they were WRONG! A mix of all of the above can be very helpful to know, though for me, Radical Inquiry as developed by Jayem and Jeshua is the 'gold standard.'
Also, when working with very cerebral clients, likely to be the case with ACIM students for example, it may be helpful to mention that breath IS the presence of Holy Spirit, or for those with more secular beliefs, let them know that the belly breath "tells the mind" that it is all right to relax, and be in a more aware state by doing so.
3) Invert and correct the perception / unloving thought
Byron Katie uses the term "arguing with Reality", ACIM "competing with God' -both speak to a event that can be very simply stated -- the person who is upset/in conflict etc is always thinking "something SHOULD BE DIFFERENT". As only Love is Real, this CANNOT be, and the willingness to accept that they would be better off (at least) if their unloving thought was wrong is often the first step to finding a more loving answer. In the end, the answer is ALWAYS a form of the same --ie, "Jack should not have eaten the cake" ( assuming Jack DID eat the cake) becomes "Jack SHOULD have eaten the cake"--because God IS Reality.As Byron Katie brilliantly informs us, when we argue with Reality, we suffer 100% of the time, when we do not, we don't. So we have a choice!
This is where words can get very tricky--the key is to, as a facilitator, "know" this yourself. To have experienced the transformation of inner unloving thoughts to loving ones, and seeing the Miracle of the end of suffering that this brings. Every client will have a very different way that they can best hear this, and the art of RI, in part, is, as Jeshua says, speaking (with respect, abject humility, and in utter equality) the language of the student.
This speaks as well to two things a facilitator must do to be successful:
1) be vigilant for your "stuff" coming up.
In the middle of a session where you think YOU are facilitating or teaching, this can be very challenging and lead to "should" thoughts ( I should not have my stuff coming up while leading a session" etc). The key here is to model just what is being asked of the client--return to breath--and don't think you know WHY this is happening, WHAT is needed, or HOW to proceed. This will be given, from inner guidance, or another source, even often through the wisdom of the client. Just be present to whatever emerges.
4) When the miracle of a new, more loving perspective occurs, Ground and Celebrate it -
When the willingness to end the attachment to an unloving, "things should be different" thought occurs, and is turned around to the acceptance, at some level, of a more loving "things are just as they are meant to be" thought, recognize you and your client are in the presence of a miracle.Indeed, A Course in Miracle's definition of a miracle is a change of perception, and in The Way of Mastery, Jeshua shares that to fully receive a miracle, it must be celebrated. I often insist that client's pick a particular form of expression, of their choosing, to take time and some resources to celebrate their discovery.
Radical Inquiry Script
- This is the formal script as created by The Way of Mastery channel Jayem
-1 Let’s take a few good, deep breaths into the belly. Let it expand like a balloon and just let go on the exhale.-2 Notice any sensations, any sounds around you, with a quality of innocence, of simply allowing everything to be just as it is.-3 As we go along and I ask you questions. In this state of innocence, of curiosity, just notice and share what arises. As it begins to clarify itself, simply share it by saying, “What I notice is….”-4 It’s not important that we understand what arises, just that we are with it curiously, willingly, as if we were following cookie crumbs, one by one, on a stroll through the forest on a gentle spring day.
Inquiry-5 Now, let’s begin.-6 What is up for you in your life, now? Observe any specific sensations, feelings or specific images or thought that arise. What is calling your attention?-7 Thank you. What I heard you say is… Did I get it all? (if not) Would you be willing to repeat that?( if so)--8 Thank you. Let’s take a few good breaths, and just be with, and appreciate, what you have already discovered, noticed and shared.Repeat Inquiry..perhaps several times..or...-9 Go ahead, and simply say that again, but more slowly, Give yourself the gift of taking time to really hear yourself. When done, just rest in the breath for a moment. This will help it to ‘settle’ into your present awareness, After all, this is a journey into the sanctity and importance of your life.-10 Now notice if there is resistance or relaxed curiosity and wonder, about this?
Feeling Communion-11 Where do you feel this in your body? See if you can just welcome it, just as it is. Can you take a deep breath right to that area, to that sensation or feeling?-12 Thank you. Now, notice what arises as you hear this question: What is one assumption or belief you have about this?-13 See if you can state the assumption or belief in a sentence such as: “An assumption (belief) I notice is that ….”-14 As you say that again, slowly, what do you notice arising? Look for any specific feeling---or a sensation, change of breath, or perhaps a specific thought, image or memory.
Turning the mind back on itself-15 "Very good, Now, can you know if this (assumption / belief) is really true?"-16 Let’s just take a few breaths, and again, just allow it to be there, appreciating your discovery just as it is.-17 How would you feel if it were not there, if you could not believe that thought, assumption?-18 Again, notice, let your breath go with your attention, let the breath expand into whatever arises.-19 Breath, explore, and really allow what emerges from this question.
Grounding and Celebrating-20 Is it okay for you to feel this new quality of being?-21 Now just hear this question, and let the answer emerge for you: as you feel this new quality, what could you choose to take as your next step?-22 Thank you. What I heard you say is… Did I get it all?-23 Thank you for that. Now, what might change in your life as a result of trusting your hearts wisdom this way?-24 Again, lets take a few breaths, really appreciating this discovery. I acknowledge your courage and willingness to take this journey into yourself.-25 If you took that step, would it be okay for those changes in your life to occur? -26 (IF not a full yes) …what change might yet need to occur within to allow your full Yes? Thank you. that is good for now. Lets make our home in the breathing, and just appreciate it all. (IF a full yes)…By when will you take this next step, and who would you like to tell?-27 Just as we began, lets make our home in the breathing, and now give thanks for what we have discovered.-28 (After perhaps a minute end with…) Wonderful. Now, just stretch, yawn, allowing your body to do what feels good. Lets stand up and move around a bit in this new quality of discovery, appreciating it all.-29 (Model an deep breath and sigh and simply say:) This feels like a good place to end, for now.”Radical Inquiry courses are offered by Jayem at www.wayofmastery.com
Radical Inquiry Instructions-with commentary by Dave Schock
Starting with a client
The goal here is to help the client (or your self ) relax and feel trusting and safe, so have a friendly and conversational, human talk (while getting the message across about breath awareness and the process as well) ! The power of the session is not in the structure, but in the LOVE, the caring, the compassion, which the structure supports. Your own state will be a good sign for you--are YOU relaxed? Feeling safe, compassionate, respectful, equal, humble? Take time and experiment with how to get there before starting. Stick to your instincts as to how the student will best feel safe and supported, watch their responses carefully. This is where the still of "speaking the language of the student" comes in, and the success of the whole session rests a lot on this.
After step 9
Repeat initial inquiry
This may be a good time to repeat several times the "what is up for you" question (step6) , as in "OK, thank you--would you like to say more?" The client may have a lot more to say!
-After Step 14
Listen, learn, and be curious!It is at this point that the client's inner wisdom, which is what is the true guide of the process, often kicks in, and what they see, sense, feel etc is often a totally unexpected "cookie crumb' -- one full of clues. They begin to reveal, often, at this step, the key core fear / unloving thought that they are operating under.This often starts as metaphors, or projections by the client onto the world. As an example, when dealing with a friend recently (not someone anyone reading this would know), she was saying how she was upset that the whole world was becoming so dependent on chemicals, prescription drugs etc.As she was a nurse, the "world mind" in me was tempted to defer to her expertise, but the "RI" trained mind looked for a clue. Why would she be seeing this now, I thought? Why her attention on this?Suspecting her upset-ness was a projection of an inner state, I asked if she had just begun taking any new medication--and she had. In fact, she was concerned that the two new medications she was taking were not compatible, but was not taking any action about it. She brought her attention back to her self, realized her perception of an “over-chemicalized” world was just about HER, her "world," her body-mind, and in doing so found the peace she was seeking, and an action step too---she decided to make sure to check with her Doctor sooner rather than later about the new medications.
So Listen carefully now!!! Trust what is coming to YOU as well in your inner state of stillness, and take time. The nest RI question is the big step, when the mind is turned back on itself--the timing of this will need to be felt by the facilitator, are they (the client) ready? Have they settled into a safe space, ready to question the foundation of a part of their life in order to transform it? Trust between the two of you will need to have been established, and the facilitator will have to be in the breath/stillness/guidance state.
It may be appropriate to repeat the first series of questions etc several times before getting here. Also, I ( Dave) have found it can be extremely helpful to ask what they are feeling, what the emotion is that is arising, and assist the identification of this feeling by limiting the options of "feelings" to the primary feeling states, Joy, Fear, Anger, Sadness or Sexual Feelings (and I would add sometimes fatigue).
This can help increase the capacity to articulate the feeling tremendously, and keep out of "thoughts" –ie, statements like "I feel that they should not have eaten the cake," or any such statement—which is really a "thought," NOT a feeling.Bringing clients back from the tendency to go "into the head," into thought, not feeling communion, is one of the essential skills to be developed as a facilitator.
After step 15
Turning the mind back on itselfThis is a huge step!!! It is crucial, and how it is handled is KEY. ACIM refers to a Miracle as a change of perspective, from a less to a more loving awareness/thought. That is what is being borne as the fruit of RI at this crucial stage.Can the facilitator help the client SEE that they do not know for sure that a thought h/story that they may have based much of their life (or lives) on IS EVEN TRUE? If so, the client will experience the willingness to entertain that1) They may be WRONG, and better off for it.2) There is a more loving explanation that might be true.3) They are better off and more honest being open minded, and allowing for the willingness to see that they may have been building a life based on something they have NO IDEA IS REAL--and will now consider that a more Loving story may be Real, and THIS is the miracles, and can CHANGE THEIR LIFE.There are many forms of the "art" of facilitating this as RI reaches this critical stage. The ego will tend to kick up distraction here, as one gets close to the truth, in many forms, possibly for both of you (irritation, body sensations, fatigue, “wanting to get away,” feeling confused, doubting the process, doubting the self, feeling anger, sadness, emoting into drama, outright attack, and more), so be vigilant, and return to breath, both yourself and then the client, with the essential reminder that the discomfort is normal at this time, and part of the new birthing!
One particular thing I have found in people wanting to heal (and there is nothing to be done if they do not) is whether or not they are ACTING AS IF their "should thought" is true. IE, they do not know if it is true for sure (ever, by the way) --(ie, acting AS IF they KNOW for SURE that Jack should not have eaten the cake) but they can see the dishonestly in ACTING AS IF it were true when they are not sure it is.This realization can totally alter a client's path into a more loving way, it is the KEY STEP in the inquiry process.
As Jeshua says, we are the creator of our experience, and THIS IS WHERE that creation is happening, at this level. Change this, and the world of the client changes.
After step 20Grounding and CelebratingThe change in perspective from an unloving thought to a loving thought is a miracle.Grounding this miracle so it is fully received and integrated into the clients life is supported strongly by steps 17-26. Jeshua also shares in the Way of Mastery that while a Miracle occurs "by itself", for it to be FULLY received it MUST be CELEBRATED. As a facilitator I usually draw attention back to the client's realization, and invite them to create a specific form of celebration in the world that is ONLY for them and for the recognition and celebration of the miracle having come. This is up to them, what form, but clients often are a bit shy about it being just for them, so I ask if they would be willing to have a celebration JUST for the event, and just for them (ie, not the whole family, their significant other , or pet, etc)
ConclusionI just want to take a minute to thank all those whose work has deepened the realization for myself and other students and teachers as to HOW to "turn the mind back on itself ", how to inquire and thereby gain the insight that TRULY HEALS. That this process exists, in it's many forms, in The Work of Byron Katie work, in The Way of Mastery, in A Course in Miracles and more, and especially the Radical Inquiry work done by Jayem, is indeed a miracle.This is attested to by client after client, who show huge breakthroughs in a relatively short, sometimes nearly immediate, time. I have had clients who had been in therapy and on serious drugs for many years, have huge and lasting recoveries in only a few, and sometimes one, session. This is not a claim of healing in a legal way, and should not be seen as a substitute for mainstream medical treatment.