1. What is The Presence Process?
The Presence Process is a self-facilitated, step by step procedure that empowers us to restore balance to the quality of the life experience that we encounter right now. Essentially, what The Presence Process accomplishes, is that it initiates a journey into an experience that many of us are now calling “present moment awareness”; a state of being in which we make choices based on what is happening right now, and not on our unresolved experiences of the past, or what we fearfully believe may happen in the future.
The consequence of charting a pathway into this awakened state is that we simultaneously become conscious of where and how our awareness is unconsciously anchored to, and being negatively affected by, what happened in the past. It also alerts us to what we unconsciously, and usually fearfully, believe the future may bring. In other words, by entering The Presence Process, we become aware of a time-based aspect to our consciousness that is seemingly sabotaging us, and in the same breath, we are instructed how to overcome this predicament.
By entering The Presence Process experientially, we are taught how to initiate and self-facilitate a procedure that enables us to gently extract our awareness from this time-based predicament, so that we may fully enter and ground ourselves in the present moment. Simultaneously, we are instructed how to evolve our perception from reactionary to responsive. This enables us to discontinue the behavior that causes our awareness to become unconsciously distracted by experiences that are now no longer in play, or are not yet in play.
All our emotional, mental, and physical discomforts that arise within this present life experience are effects of unresolved experiences that occurred “in time”. Therefore, as we consciously move our attention more fully into the present moment, our discomforts automatically surface, unravel, and come to resolution. In The Presence Process we call this procedure of automatic resolution, “integration”. Integration may also be metaphorically thought of as “digestion”. The Presence Process is therefore a procedure that enables us to gently digest our unresolved past and our fearfully projected future, so that our awareness is freed up to be fully available here and now. The implications are that we gain a new lease on living.
There are few opportunities in the hustle and bustle of our “modern world” life experience that invite us to take an honest look at our circumstances with the intent on transforming what we think is “our lot in life” into “a whole lot of Life”. The Presence Process is this opportunity. It teaches us how to use the world as a mirror to see what we successfully hide from ourselves; the abundantly fertile compost for our personal evolution. It then shows us how to use these hidden riches to fertilize our life experience with authentic joy, abundance, and health.
So in essence, The Presence Process is an experiential journey that empowers us to deliver ourselves from the deathly mental predicament of subsisting in a predominantly time-based consciousness, into the vibrant and radiant experience of this moment. Although it may sound as if this Process is destination-orientated, it is not; it is about initiating a journey that is by all accounts eternal. Our life “in time” is limited; yet our possibilities in the present moment are infinite.
2. How does The Presence Process work?
The power of The Presence Process is that it enables us to make adjustments at the causal point of our experiences in this physical, mental, and emotional world. In The Presence Process terminology, we work in harmony with what we call The Pathway of Awareness. This is the energetic pathway that our awareness travels along as we enter our experience of the world. This pathway is easily identified by observing a child’s initial development; first a child cries, then it talks, and then it walks – in that deliberate order. In other words, The Pathway of Awareness is from the emotional, to the mental, to the physical. This does not mean that our emotional body is more or less superior to our mental or physical body, or that it develops first; it means that right after birth our awareness is primarily emotional, and therefore the emotional body is the causal point of the quality of all our experiences “in this world”.
We may also observe the Pathway of Awareness that we use in all our processing by observing what we call The Seven Year Cycle. The first seven years of our life are predominately emotional, and we call this period of development our childhood. During the next seven years we enter school and immerse ourselves in predominantly mental activities, like reading and writing. During this stage of our development we are called young boys and girls. At 14 we then commence another seven year period, as teenagers, in which our focus is more physically orientated. We then become interested in our sexuality and gravitate towards activities that prepare us to take up our physical place in the world. When we turn 21 we are then considered to be entering adulthood. Through these three seven year cycles we clearly see an unfolding pathway that moves deliberately from emotional, to mental, to physical.
Our journey through The Presence Process reveals that while we operate in a time-based paradigm, that the physical world and our experience of it is by no means the causal point of anything; it is an ongoing effect of emotionally imprinted experiences that are initiated during our initial seven years of childhood. This procedure therefore enables us to understand, that if we seek to adjust “the quality” of our experiences in this world, then these adjustments are to be of an emotional content to be real and lasting. If we stand back from our life experience and observe it objectively, it is clear that its “quality” is sourced from “how we feel” and not what “we think” of it. This tells us that to make real adjustments “the quality” of any experience we are having, we are to take action that impacts its emotional content.
Adjusting the emotional content of our behavior, however, is challenging for many of us. This is because the causal experiences that initiated our present discomforts occurred well before we developed the mental perceptual abilities that now dominate our “adult” way of interacting with ourselves and our world. Because we now interact with everything so mentally, it is challenging for us to willingly allow our awareness to enter our emotional body. Since we departed childhood we trained ourselves to deliberately suppress our emotional awareness. However, when we reach a certain point in our development, when we realize the necessity to evolve emotionally, then this self-suppressive approach towards our emotional awareness is to be overcome. Accordingly we need to regain conscious access to our emotional body. This is imperative because the records of the experiences that initially seeded the discomforts we encounter in our life right now are not stored mentally, but energetically as feelings. To enable our awareness to revisit these causal points with the intent of restoring balance through activating emotional growth, it is necessary to move against the grain of our behavioral reflexes; it is necessary to become vulnerable to our suppressed inner feelings, and to accomplish this without turning these feelings into mental concepts or outer physical dramatizations.
The mental body assists to navigate us in the right direction, which it does by assisting us to “understand” the task ahead. Yet, it cannot do more than that. “Understanding” is only a small part of the healing Process. “Understanding” is like a diving board; we use it to spring into action, but we leave it to enter the water. At some point we abort our mental preoccupation with our unbalanced experiences to be able to restore balance to them by feeling them. Restoring balance to “the quality” of our life experience is therefore accomplished by a simple yet challenging procedure of “feeling our way through our emotional blockages”.
To accomplish this challenging task, The Presence Process initiates a conscious journey that enables us to reverse The Pathway of Awareness that we initially traveled along to enter our present experiences; we retrace the steps that our awareness took as we entered this world. First we initiate a movement towards physical presence, then mental clarity, then emotional balance — which leads us gradually to an increasing experience of inner calm and outer harmony.
The Presence Process accomplishes this remarkable feat using a simple breathing technique, a procedure of mental repetition called Presence Activation Statements, reading materials deliberately designed to activate present moment awareness, and perceptual tools that facilitate integration – and that also instruct us in how to unravel our reactive behavior. We also partake in what we call “water sessions”. These enable our awareness to exit our habitual mental preoccupations so that emotional body cleansing is initiated. All of this may sound complicated, but it is simple. The instructions are easy to follow and the procedures are accessible to all.
The book, THE PRESENCE PROCESS, is designed to train us to facilitate ourselves through this experience by developing a relationship with our Inner Presence. It empowers us by placing the healing of our experiences into our own hands. One of the most astounding ways that it accomplishes this is by enabling us to see what we are hiding from ourselves. It teaches us how to use the world as a mirror. It turns our life experience into a learning experience, and thus all previously perceived obstacles into present moment awareness possibilities. By reading the book we become increasingly conscious in an irreversible way. It therefore awakens our awareness to the extent that it is uncomfortable for us to return to our unconscious time-based sleep-state.
We are already breathing, thinking, reading, and seeing the world in a particular way; The Presence Process now trains us how to approach these everyday activities consciously, with a focused intent that enables us to gradually and gently resolve the time-based issues that stand in our way of present moment awareness. Because the intentions of The Presence Process are causal, in other words, because all the physical and mental components of this Process are deliberately aimed at restoring emotional balance, its beneficial impact on our life experience is inevitable. By intending to awaken us emotionally, it automatically carries our awareness to the causal point of our life experience, and the consequence of accomplishing this is change in the quality of our all our encounters.
3. Surely it is dangerous to practice the breathing procedure without facilitation?
If we are exploring procedures like Rebirthing, Breath Work, or Pranayama Yoga, then personal facilitation is essential. This is because these procedures take us into realms of physical, mental, emotional, and vibrational experiences that may be unfamiliar and hence extremely challenging for us. Without personal guidance, experiences initiated by these techniques may cause fear and confusion, and this may cause further unnecessary complications.
Although there may be a resemblance to these listed breathing techniques, The Presence Process is not aligned with them at all. These techniques require powerful breath-control, while The Presence Process only calls for natural breathing. Instead of initiating any form of breath-control, we are instructed how to release our control over our breathing. The way we breathe in The Presence Process is no different from the way all other breathing creatures upon this planet breathe; without pausing. Also, the duration of the breathing sessions as instructed by the book are not long enough for us to enter any intensive processing. The Presence Process procedure is about gradual, gentle processing.
The consequence of any technique that uses breathing is determined by the intent that steers it. The breath then functions as a magnifying glass through which that intent is magnified. In the text of the book, prior to experientially entering The Presence Process, our intention is deliberately aligned so that we know why we are breathing, how we are to breathe, and what the outcome is that we are seeking. In this way the Process remains safe, gentle, and well within our ability to responsibly facilitate ourselves.
4. Why should we do The Presence Process?
There are possibly as many reasons for entry into this procedure as there are those of us who choose to enter it:
Because we are curious. Because we want to “grow up”. Because we are aware that we are going around and around in circles and getting nowhere. Because our life experience is uncomfortable and nobody is able to relieve us of this discomfort — and we suspect that nobody but us can. Because our life is an opportunity to explore the potentials of our humanity. Because we are fascinated by the prospect of living within present moment awareness.
Often we come to this sort of experience because we are suffering from an emotional, mental, or physical symptom that is unbalancing the quality of our life experience. Sometimes we come to it purely because we resonate with it on a level that is beyond mental explanation. Through the work of teachers like Eckhart Tolle, there are many of us who are now familiar with the possibility of entering the heightened state of being called THE NOW, consequently we are attracted to this procedure because it offers us a methodical, step by step approach for accumulating and maintaining this state of awareness.
Our intent for entering this procedure therefore varies from seeking symptomatic relief to exploring the potential of our humanity. However, we do not necessarily require a reason for entering The Presence Process; if we intuitively resonate with it, this is more than enough. There is also no “should” involved; in other words, no one should do this Process. In the final analysis, the pull comes from within for the will to complete it to be accessed.
5. Can anyone do it?
As far as the physical requirements are concerned, yes; anyone who is able to breathe may do the breathing technique. As far as the mental requirements are concerned, no; this is because there is a large body of reading material that requires digesting. For this reason the Process is not recommended for children below the age of 14. However, this is only a recommendation, not a rule. In this day and age we are to remain open to the possibility of exceptions; as there are possibly 13-year-olds who understand the text, there are definitely adults among us who may initially find it challenging to grasp. This is not because it is complicated; it is because the text invites us to enter a perceptual paradigm that turns the assumptions we make about our life experience in a time-based paradigm upside down.
Emotionally, not everyone may be ready for this experience either. When we speak of emotional requirements, we are not referring to being old enough, as in our physical age, but to being emotionally mature enough, as in our level of personal responsibility. Entering The Presence Process requires that we develop an element of responsibility towards ourselves. Many of us accomplish challenging of tasks when we are driven by outside influences, but then we may find it extremely difficult to accomplish anything significant when we are required to tap into our own self-determined will. The bottom line is that only we know if we contain the maturity and discipline to follow the instructions of the Process, and to keep doing so for 77 days without throwing in the towel because it is not unfolding according to our personal agendas.
Also, because we have a background in “the healing arts” does not mean we automatically sail through this experience. In fact, the opposite may often be the case. One-on-one facilitation of this Process reveals over and over again that those who take to this like ducks to water are often not the individuals we would assume perfect for it. This is the precarious nature of “assumption”. If we assume we already know exactly what is going on in our life experiences, what we are to accomplish, or are going to accomplish by entering this Process, then we find it challenging to surrender to the experience. We find ourselves stuck in a mental place, and this initially inhibits our ability to allow our awareness to enter our emotional body. The rule of thumb is that anyone who comes to this Process willing to stand in a place of “not knowing” appears to be blessed with a greater ability to stay the course. This is a clue.
What determines our ability to enter and complete The Presence Process? Our ability to breathe consciously, our ability to mentally comprehend the reading materials, and our emotional readiness to embrace the challenge of “growing up” and taking full responsibility for the quality of our life experience. Accessibility is therefore not clearly defined. We know if we are ready; it is not possible for anyone to make this decision for us. Nor is it possible to judge whether another is ready or not. The only way to find out is to metaphorically take our head off and dive in heart first.