Gratefulness is the key to joy. Joy is the happiness that doesn’t depend on what happens.
-Brother David Steindl-Rast
Many ancient wisdom traditions refer to the natural state of the human psyche as joy, peace, and love. The Greek word psyche means soul, and the essence of the soul is love. Yet, simply by living in a world of uncertainty, we all have experienced some wounding of the heart, which causes us to retract our love to protect against further hurt.
When we hold on to our stories from the past, we perpetuate our suffering in the present and alienate ourselves from our natural state of love and joy. Utilizing group processes including Gestalt, psychodrama, and meditation, this workshop will assist you in working through self-imposed limitations to release the burden of the past. It will provide participants, including mental health professionals, with the skills necessary to identify and overcome self-defeating thoughts and behaviors, shift the emotional meaning of past experiences to enhance personal growth, and develop a healthy internal support system and cohesive sense of self.
When we empty ourselves of stories from our past, we open to the wellspring of joy and gratefulness (great-full-ness) that spontaneously arises in the present moment from the core of our being. In this state of gratitude (Latin, gratia, “to give thanks”) we recognize that love is for-giving, and we naturally experience greater empathy and compassion for all human suffering.
Participants must be willing to attend all sessions and abstain from alcohol and non-prescription drugs for the duration of the workshop.
Recommended reading: Cavanaugh, Who Am I, Really? How Our Wounds Lead to Healing.