Drs. Gay and Kathlyn HendricksConscious Loving
Drs. Gay and Kathlyn Hendricks have brought us the jewel of “Conscious Loving.” Take this journey with the Hendricks through our deepest personal work into a state of continuous love and enduring joy.
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Drs. Gay and Kathlyn Hendricks Text Excerpt
Dr. Kathlyn Hendricks
We take a body centered approach to personal change and also to relationship transformation.
Dr. Gay Hendricks
We have two different trainings that our institute offers. One training is in Body Centered Therapy. Another training is in a body centered approach to relationship transformation. So both of those is really what we do.
We’re really I guess in the broader subject interested in really re-inventing the whole field of psychology so that it’s more practical and useful and more germane to what people are experiencing every moment. We learned over the past, well I guess, twenty five years now that both of us have been practicing, although we’ve only known each other for 14 years, this is my twenty fifth year in the profession. One thing that I learned early on was that a good bit of the stuff I learned in graduate school was not really relevant to what really went on in people’s lives.
So I had to take a good close look in the first few years of my practice at what people really needed in order to make changes in their lives. And that’s how I gravitated towards a body centered approach, because I found that when I used things like breathing, movement, having people learn to identify the truth in themselves and tell the truth. All of the nine principles that we talk about in At the Speed of Life, people got better very quickly. And if I didn’t do those things, they didn’t get to feeling good very quickly.
At the risk of too simple a question, let’s describe the basic human problem. What is it that needs to be fixed? What is broken down? What is dysfunctional?
Dr. Kathlyn Hendricks
Well it seem to me that the basic thing that’s broken down is any kind of communication between mind and body. So for many centuries, society has taught us how to separate our feelings from our mind, how to separate our spiritual life from our bodies. Society has taught how to make our bodies wrong, how to make our feelings wrong. And many of us have learned as we grow up how to dissociate ourselves from what we’re actually experiencing.
So we think that the basic split that needs to be healed is that intelligence and harmony resides in all of our body, not just in our mind. So I work all the time with people, like in corporations, who have no idea what they are actually feeling. They have no idea what’s going on below their necks. And it causes a lot of problems, in their relationships and in their health.
OK, so who are we? Body, spirit, mind, emotions. Is it one thing? Are we combinations of discreetly different things? What are we?
Dr. Gay Hendricks
The way we see it is that the bottom of everything, what we are, is pure consciousness. In other words, there’s a vast open field or an ocean of consciousness that resides in every part of ourselves, every cell of our body. We call that essence. Other traditions have used other words for it. Essence is the word we used to describe that. We think that people have access to personal essence, in other words the part of them that makes them who they are. They also have access to what we call universal essence, the part of us that connects us to everyone else and everything else in the universe.
That’s the fundamentals of everything. And then on top of that are layers of felling, for example, there’s fear, anger sadness, sexual feelings. All of those things occur on top of consciousness.
The real problem though becomes, early on in life, that many of us develop what we call in the book personas or acts, which are ways we learn to express ourselves to get contact with the rest of the world. In the act of developing these personas, many of us loose touch with who we really are and the feelings that are underneath and particularly the essence that is underneath everything.