The Camino de Santiago de Compostela, or the Way of St James of the Field of Stars, is becoming increasingly popular in Europe and North America and many thousands of people are walking in order to gain perspective on their lives and to find answers because they are at a crossroad or point of transition. The Inner Camino Training Series replicates this outer process of walking right here in our own living rooms, by exploring what is essential to have in place in order to make significant life changes.
This training takes us on a journey to our inner world. Indeed, this journey within is as challenging and arduous as any outer journey. When we walk the ‘outer’ Camino it may seem daunting initially to think of walking over 20 kilometers a day, let alone the 778 kilometers from St Jean Pied de Port to Santiago. In walking these distances we move beyond our comfort zone, we meet our fears, our potential and the very limits of our physical endurance. We simply walk, day after day, and as we walk our minds empty into increasing detachment and peace. We gain sudden insights about our ‘real’ lives back at home, and from that overviewing gaze, the seeds of change and transformation begin.
So it is with the Inner Camino, which addresses the problem of how to bring the external Camino home. In other words, when we get a spiritual insight, a moment of perspective, an overview or an ‘aha’, how do we hold onto it when we get back into our everyday lives?
The remit of the Inner Camino is to help us to discover our inner guidance as a profoundly liberating experience. It brings us to the place from where we can truly change our consciousness in order to approach existing problems in an entirely new way.
Regardless of whether or not you have walked the Camino de Santiago, you can possibly relate to the feeling of struggling with the intensity of life and its busyness. Even if we engage regularly in meditation or a spiritual practice, we often forget any inner peace once we get pulled back into the busyness of our lives. Somehow, despite our ‘high dreams’ regarding greater awareness and mindful living, we do not trust that we have all we need to make space for a quieter more expanded consciousness.
Yet, in reality we have on tap access to an unbelievable capacity for insight and wisdom, a capacity or consciousness that we often only realize on retreat, holiday or when we are ‘forced’ to stop such as with an illness. In such moments all of the worries that cloud our awareness drop away and we may gain clarity of vision.
Whenever we have a flash of intuition, whenever we work creatively with some unforeseen synchronicity, or attain the deep compassion that comes with meditation or prayer we are living out of this consciousness.
In this training we teach you how to access reliably this level of a deep intuitive consciousness. Through a daily practice we learn to discover vital insights and live more fully out of our deepest potential. We teach you to live life on the edge, to cultivate a consciousness that you can use even in the darkest moments of hopelessness.
1. Stopping and Stepping Out - Building your wise and compassionate observer
On this training day we teach you how to stop and step out into Dual Awareness. This is akin to looking back on our selves as if from the stars. From there we gain a new perspective on every situation and instead of feeling lost or without choice, we discover that we have infinite possibilities available to us. This first day is where you learn about concepts such as stepping across the threshold, understanding the power of compassion and challenging habitual scripts and stories that come from our ordinary habit lives.
2. Chatter or Guidance
Everybody has an internal voice and we chatter to ourselves constantly. If our chatter is taken over by fear and anxiety we often limit our lives in order to try to keep safe. Without realizing it we slip back into habit life, lose awareness and become one-sided or clouded in judgment. Over time we may lose an inner feeling of personal power and self-worth, and thereby get caught into negative feelings and thought patterns. In this training we teach you how to challenge your internal chatter, so that it becomes more uplifting, rather than being tinged with criticism or doubt. We help you replace this unhelpful chatter with a deep sense of personal power that allows you to feel alive and comfortable in yourself.
3. The Guest House Attitude
This is a training day where we work on our capacity to love and accept ourselves exactly as we are. Developing a Guest House attitude means awakening our hearts to ourselves. Many will be familiar with Rumi’s poem, ‘The Guest House’. We help you identify where you may be subtly out of balance, such as over-investing in your thinking or becoming overwhelmed regularly by feelings. You will explore the parts of yourself that you are ashamed of or perhaps that you dislike, and instead you will learn to welcome them all in. From this attitude of acceptance and deep democracy we automatically become more accepting and tolerant of others.
4. I Am You and You Are Me
This training day is based on the belief that we are all part of a bigger consciousness, where we all one. Yet we know that in our experience of every day life, we frequently get caught up in our multiple differences and diversity. Theses differences can become so large and insurmountable that they disturb our peace. On this training day we teach you how to work with a difficult relationship and how to turn that person into your ‘noble friend’. Once you understand this method you can transform many tensions in your relationships into ‘pearls of wisdom’.
5. Intimacy and Relationship
This training day helps you discover what blocks you from full contact and connection in relationship. We teach you to understand the barriers that separate you from others and prevent you from becoming fully transparent and open. Just as many of us might consider ourselves ‘conflict avoidant’, so too are we subtly intimacy averse. We try to keep ourselves separate and hidden, often fearful that if others saw who we truly were they might be disappointed. In this training day we show you how to catch the many ways that can be used to ‘hide’ from intimacy. In addition we learn about the different communication styles that may confuse relationships. We will teach you ways to bypass these blocks to greater connection.
6. Conflict and the Path of Anger
In this module we learn how to ‘fight well’. Many of us seek to avoid conflict at all costs, fearing that it will create devastation in our relationship. Others engage in frequent conflicts that seem to recycle because they never reach a satisfactory solution. Here, we teach you a method for engaging in conflict that seeks a ‘win win’ for all. We encourage you to explore your style of anger and how you can use it well, without being fearful of its consequences. With this new understanding of anger and conflict, you will have tools for addressing many long standing relationship difficulties, be it in your family systems or places of work.
7. Power, Rank and Diversity
The politics of power are at the root of much human suffering, both at the personal level and in the organizations where we work. A society without rank and power differences is not possible. These differences are not in themselves bad, but the potential unconscious abuse of this power is. We know that with greater self-awareness and interpersonal skills such abuse can be minimized. In this training day we teach you ways to explore the power dynamics around you and the often hidden strata of rank, power and diversity even in your close relationships and friendship groups. With increased understanding of how power and rank are wielded, you can gradually reduce any toxic or oppressive effects, and promote an atmosphere of cooperation and co-creation around you.
8. Stepping Into Eldership
In this training day we explore the way of the elder, and how to witness and ‘weather report’ from an unhooked and compassionate perspective. We will teach you how to catch communications or ‘signals’ that come from unknown parts of yourself, others and from the world in the form of synchronicities and ‘flirts’. This training day focuses on how to live as much as you can from this dual awareness gaze. From that awareness you can make decisions with more ease, and act from greater perspective and deeper compassion.
These training days teach practical management skills to build confidence in working with groups and teams in order to lead from an empowered, clear and insightful place.
This training teaches the skills to deepen a self-reflective practice that forms the basis of all supervision. We can thereby empower others to engage with work in a more effective and satisfying way.
This training offers a tool kit and daily practice to live life in a more mindful way. It combines the best from psychological knowledge and meditation traditions to live out of full personal power.
These CPD days teach fundamental process skills for working with clients and understanding group and team dynamics. Essential for anyone wanting to take their work to a deeper level.