by SiteSuper | Nov 11, 2017 |
The InnerView approach is based on a 4Fold Path with matching ‘steps’ on different levels unfolding for both the guides and initiates. However the sequence is more like the convergence of a 4-way intersection or a spiral into the centre than linear steps. It’s part of the movement away from probing emotional wounds and instead using the paradigm of a pilgrimage to the sources of our wholeness; from what’s wrong with people to what’s right with persons, from pathology to possibilities, from an ego-based to a soul-grounded perspective on helping and healing. The InnerView approach has more in common with The Wisdom Way of Knowing and the Camino to Santiago de Compostela than psychoanalysis.
It’s a learning process that never stops. Seek with the soul and see with the heart, like my namesake in Little Lord Fauntleroy who only saw the good in his grandfather whom everyone else hated. The InnerView path is about what it takes to stay on the growing edge of soul making. It comes down to making choices between the inner voice of soul or the demands of the ego, and of course there needs to be discernment about which is which. When we clearly see the balance of power between ego and soul in any life situation, that presents the choice each person makes as their own act of faith.
InnerView is inspired by the vision of Tom Francoeur. My personal sources of inspiration for the InnerView approach are… the poems of Rumi, the songs of Bob Dylan, inspirational movies from those of Charlie Chaplin to Terrence Malick, the novels of Herman Hesse, the modern fables of Paulo Coelho, the example of Muhammad Ali, The Rule of Benedict, the faith of Etty Hillesum, the poise of Bobby Orr, the theology of Richard Rohr, the insights of Adin Steinsaltz, the transmissions of Reiki… you get the idea.
Well, that depends on what you mean. Most clients are in the midst of painful life circumstances, which InnerView Guidance addresses by encouraging the person behind the problem. InnerView ‘clinical assessment’ includes heartfelt values, essential qualities, the basis for hope, preferred states, underlying character strengths, inner and outer supports, and anything life-giving for the client. Yet when that’s the approach, you need to be alert to the kind of crisis that calls for immediate assistance, i.e. do your due diligence whether that means making a child protection report, advising your clients to call 911 (or the equivalent in their country), a mental health hotline, or to proceed to a hospital emergency department. See these resources for those urgent needs.
InnerView has allowed me to embrace a number of dualities or creative tensions in my self-awareness, and discover a higher order synthesis for the journey forward. It has given me new directions and third alternatives at my own crossroads of Judaism/Christianity, psychology/spirituality, career/vocation, individuation/community, and so on. You could call it ‘third nature’ since it takes much perseverence, presence of mind, and the discipline of dual attention to “hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald.
You’re now referring to InnerView more as a state of being than a path & practice. In that sense, it’s intuitive recognition of authenticity and genuineness when we unwrap someone’s personality package. When we say that someone or something has ‘soul’ that’s the resonance we feel between the inner qualities and the outer expression of them. Conversely, when someone is being inauthentic, there’s a fake ‘feel’ to it, as if it’s synthetic and not organic.
Yes, self-will in all its forms has to be relinquished as soul knowledge gains ground. Again, it’s a matter of incremental progress often involving the proverbial ‘two steps forward, one step back’ dance. So infinite patience and endless self-forgiveness need to be practiced. There’s a vision of consolation in every faith tradition which can redeem whatever stories of desolation we tell ourselves or hear from others. There are many situations in which Humpty Dumpty has a great fall and all the king’s horses and all the king’s men can’t put Humpty back together again. It’s about maintaining an open heart and unconditional love beyond the point where we can fix ourselves or others. It helps to be held within another’s heart which is that generous!
It can be a quick study or a long journey, because the nature of any psychospiritual growth is to be continuously unfolding. So the ‘pure’ can always be more purified and the ‘applied’ can always be reapplied at another crossroads in life or to any challenging life situation of one’s own or another’s. What helps me the most is the psychospiritual contributions of writers and artists of all kinds, and staying connected with those on the same wavelength. Also soul talk with fellow soulfarers when we compare notes (called ‘soulstorming’). It’s a blessing to have travelling companions on the evolutionary journey.
To keep it really simple, it’s about leaving a person feeling good about themselves as a result of any encounter. It also comes back to having some kind of map for the landscape of the soul, since that forms the groundwork for psychospiritual guidance. When it came to clinical casework, I simply applied the same principle of meeting behind the scenes of a problem-saturated story or the dysfunctional personality pattern. Assess and address the best in the person, and then look at the issue from a position of strength. Where there’s a pattern in a life predicament there’s also an antidote in the form of soul qualities being summoned forth to transcend or transform it.
It actually goes back many years when I chose to work as a psychiatric attendant (although I was already qualified as a therapist) so I could relate to the patients outside of a clinical role, thereby removing the inherent power differential of doctor-patient. I had observed that when ‘mental patients’ were faced with those officially treating them, it reinforced their mental patient status and to be a mental patient you must have a mental illness. Patients who were used to being seen through the filter of the medical model responded well to a guileless gaze on the person behind the problem.
It’s as if I would say to them, “OK, you’re in this ‘condition’ and I’m in mine. So here we are. What now?”