© W.David Hoisington, Ph. D.

4. Monday  09 | 26| 2016

The Mystic as Witness

The mystic is a guide sharing the path to experiencing a shift into well being.  This shift can be soft and gentle like a cool breeze through the trees on a hot day. The shift can also be quite dramatic like the first bolt of lightning before the arrival of desperately needed drought relieving rain.  The effects of the shift into well being can be brief, lasting seconds, and difficult to clearly recognize without a guide.  The effects can also be intense, lasting hours, and also easier to understand with a guide.  The mystic as a guide through this compassion space experience is also a witness to the shared experience of this shift into well being.  This is important because we are meaning-making creatures.  We seek to carve out our own understanding from the cloud of unknowing, and the mystic, having been there with us, helps us to explore the meaning of the shift into well being - and can also help us to find our own way back, which is the main purpose of witnessing. Anytime we reach out with compassion we do so, by definition, with the intent to reduce suffering. When we enter the sacred compassion space with another with such gentle intent, it is then that we may also share with that person the experience of shifting from suffering (in that moment) to well being.  The process of going through the shift is what the mystic is skilled at doing, but it is not something limited to the mystic.  We are all capable of entering the sacred compassion space with another, and capable of helping another shift out of suffering. It the situation allows for it then we should also follow-up with the person we helped, serve as and a witness to that shift out of suffering. The relationship established when we do witness back to the person with whom we shared the healing moment is not the same as the shift-to-wellbeing moment (most of the time).  This can be quite disappointing for those who return seeking to “feel good” at the “hands of the guru”.  But if you understand the process then it can be easier for both participant and practitioner.  The book, “The Support Relationship” is aimed at describing how we form this witness relationship, which is one of supporting the individual in discovering their own path to well being.  The support relationship is experienced differently than the healing relationship and it is often interrupted by the “Resistant Relationship”. The responsibility of being a witness and understanding the differences between the healing Relationship and the Support Relationship are necessary components for successfully helping people on the path to well being. No one person can be the “mystic” for everyone.  Spend time reaching out with compassion and you will quickly discover that some folks will respond immediately, some will come around slowly, some will come with a hunger that can never be filled, and some will just want to leave as quickly as possible.  It’s a bit like the parable of the sower.  The relationship stance that the two people bring into the compassion moment effects both the possibility of healing and the possibility of resistance.  After nearly five decades of such experiences this writer sees no end to learning more about how to navigate these moments with the sole intent to promote well being.  Perhaps the simplest message here is to always know which of the three relationships you are sharing with the other at any given moment… oh, and just to make it a bit more complex, bouncing around from one relationship type to another can happen.  It is all part of the process of helping the person(s) involved to see both the path to well being and the obstacles in the way. We are each going to experience the process in our own way, much in the same way as we have differences in how we experience and understand compassion (Theory of Compassion Development), but there are also fundamental characteristics of both compassion and witnessing which bridge the gap of individuality. One of the universal characteristics is that this is a sacred relationship.  The term sacred is applied here with the broadest of brushes.  In this context there can be a Divine element (as discussed in The Mystic Relationship, and in chapter 4 in the Healing Relationship).  But it is more about reverence, a cherished process not to be tarnished.  If one forgets to hold this compassionate interpersonal process as sacred, then there is a great risk for the relationship to morph into confusion.  Relationship confusion is a sickness in our society, a serious sickness, and one which has often placed the art of healing, due to the confusion, on the same scaffold as the young women from Salem, Massachusetts in the late 1600’s.  One of the goals of this website is to provide information which will lift the veil of ignorance and return the art of healing to an accepted practice. .
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A quest of compassion and finding our “true self”

in the midst of a hectic world

Seeking the Soul of Life: Blog Short essays exploring man’s quest for enlightenment
© W.David Hoisington, Ph.D.

4. Monday  09 | 26| 2016

The

Mystic as Witness

The mystic is a guide sharing the path to experiencing a shift  into well being.  This shift can be soft and gentle like a cool breeze through the trees on a hot day. The shift can also be quite dramatic like the first bolt of lightning before the arrival of desperately needed drought relieving rain.  The effects of the shift into well being can be brief, lasting seconds, and difficult to clearly recognize without a guide.  The effects can also be intense, lasting hours, and also easier to understand with a guide.  The mystic as a guide through this compassion space experience is also a witness to the shared experience of this shift into well being.  This is important because we are meaning-making creatures.  We seek to carve out our own understanding from the cloud of unknowing, and the mystic, having been there with us, helps us to explore the meaning of the shift into well being - and can also help us to find our own way back, which is the main purpose of witnessing. Anytime we reach out with compassion we do so, by definition, with the intent to reduce suffering. When we enter the sacred compassion space with another with such gentle intent, it is then that we may also share with that person the experience of shifting from suffering (in that moment) to well being.  The process of going through the shift is what the mystic is skilled at doing, but it is not something limited to the mystic.  We are all capable of entering the sacred compassion space with another, and capable of helping another shift out of suffering. It the situation allows for it then we should also follow-up with the person we helped, serve as and a witness to that shift out of suffering. The relationship established when we do witness back to the person with whom we shared the healing moment is not the same as the shift-to- wellbeing moment (most of the time).  This can be quite disappointing for those who return seeking to “feel good” at the “hands of the guru”.  But if you understand the process then it can be easier for both participant and practitioner.  The book, “The Support Relationship” is aimed at describing how we form this witness relationship, which is one of supporting the individual in discovering their own path to well being.  The support relationship is experienced differently than the healing relationship and it is often interrupted by the “Resistant Relationship”. The responsibility of being a witness and understanding the differences between the healing Relationship and the Support Relationship are necessary components for successfully helping people on the path to well being. No one person can be the “mystic” for everyone.  Spend time reaching out with compassion and you will quickly discover that some folks will respond immediately, some will come around slowly, some will come with a hunger that can never be filled, and some will just want to leave as quickly as possible.  It’s a bit like the parable of the sower.  The relationship stance that the two people bring into the compassion moment effects both the possibility of healing and the possibility of resistance.  After nearly five decades of such experiences this writer sees no end to learning more about how to navigate these moments with the sole intent to promote well being.  Perhaps the simplest message here is to always know which of the three relationships you are sharing with the other at any given moment… oh, and just to make it a bit more complex, bouncing around from one relationship type to another can happen.  It is all part of the process of helping the person(s) involved to see both the path to well being and the obstacles in the way. We are each going to experience the process in our own way, much in the same way as we have differences in how we experience and understand compassion (Theory of Compassion Development), but there are also fundamental characteristics of both compassion and witnessing which bridge the gap of individuality. One of the universal characteristics is that this is a sacred relationship.  The term sacred is applied here with the broadest of brushes.  In this context there can be a Divine element (as discussed in The Mystic Relationship, and in chapter 4 in the Healing Relationship).  But it is more about reverence, a cherished process not to be tarnished.  If one forgets to hold this compassionate interpersonal process as sacred, then there is a great risk for the relationship to morph into confusion.  Relationship confusion is a sickness in our society, a serious sickness, and one which has often placed the art of healing, due to the confusion, on the same scaffold as the young women from Salem, Massachusetts in the late 1600’s.  One of the goals of this website is to provide information which will lift the veil of ignorance and return the art of healing to an accepted practice. .