Status: Trainee Wisdom Counsellor
What set you off on the course of awakening?
I read a Japanese architecture book about tea houses. I was 26 in the middle of a quarter life crisis. It talked about Zen and this curious word 'enlightenment'. Until that point I don't think I'd heard it before, which is strange. Once I did I started feeling there was something I'd forgotten about a long long time ago. I spent the next 4 years frantically searching for what that was.
What traditions/teachers/practices were you involved with previously?
Primarily Zen and Buddhist Insight traditions. I had some pretty wild good times on early personal retreats, and some terrifying times. At one point I was sitting for many hours a day, with growing frustration, continually hitting a figurative wall. By that time I wasn't in a good way, I'd hit spiritual rock bottom.
How did you first hear about working with Alan?
I came across Alan years ago when I first started on the journey. I instantly disliked him, haha. At the time I didn't have the wisdom to understand my reaction. Four years later, at my wits end with Buddhist practice and not knowing where to go next, I remembered Alan. Which was of course, the best move I ever made, just don't tell Alan I said that.
What have the most significant wisdom/awakening events in your life?
Since working with Alan I've had quite a few. Transmission started after about 4 months working together, which literally changed everything. I went from struggling with practices to more and more fun effortless discovery. I classically 'woke-up' in early 2014 in California on retreat with Alan. Since then I followed through the rest of the sequence in fairly quick succession, some on retreat, some just hanging out. I eventually gave birth to the fountainhead in March 2015 walking down the street in California (something about that place does it for me). These are clearly significant, but I've also had similarly profound events working with my own problems with a dialectic, and especially with others. Nothing is left out in participation.
Do you find easy to sit?
I still have a bit of a zen hangover. But meditation is easy like a bliss fountain! Nothing beats being on retreat with a few friends to participate in the One with though ...
Do you find it easy to do a dialectic?
Yes. Especially leading people through it. I sometimes get a little lost when working through on myself, but I just go back to the structure and providence does its thing.
Can you remember the first time you really grasped the implications of dialectic contemplation?
On retreat. The first one in Wales. Mind totally blown. Then I was blissed off my face for the rest of the week. Never gets old.