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Person-Centred and Focusing-Oriented Counselling and Psychotherapy
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Get Bigger Than What’s Bugging You!

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The below links are to PDFs that were created by Ann Weiser Cornell. Ann has created a 5 day e-course, which as the title suggest results in you getting an email once a day for 5 days.  Each day builds on the next.  Ann has kindly said they PDFs can be shared, so long as they are not altered in any way.  They are in their original form.  Once this post is made, I will be emailing Ann with the link in case she disapproves.  If she does this post will be removed.

The general idea is connected with the title of one of Ann’s books: The Radical Acceptance of Everything: Living a Focusing Life - where she expresses an idea very similar to Carl Roger’s words: “The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.”  Ann’s words being: “When you accept yourself, your whole life changes.”
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Conversations: June 2011: Liora Bar-Natan

Conversations: June 2011: Liora Bar-Natan | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Liora Bar-Natan, M.A, is a body psychotherapist, and a Focusing Coordinator certified by the Focusing Institute. She heads the "Focusing Oriented Therapy Center", and is a senior faculty member at Ridman College, Israel. She works with both individuals and groups as a therapist, supervisor and instructor. She's a member of the European Association for Body Psychotherapy (EABP). She specializes in trauma therapy, Biosynthesis and Family Constellations.
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Dr. Rogers and the Lego Spaceship (Towards a Teachable Focusing-Oriented Person-Centred Theory)

Dr. Rogers and the Lego Spaceship (Towards a Teachable Focusing-Oriented Person-Centred Theory) | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Clive Perraton Mountford
Glyndwr University,
c.p.mountford@glyndwr.ac.uk

Beautiful, Beloved, and Flawed

Every therapeutic encounter is unique. My job as a counsellor is to
track the grain of each encounter as closely as I can, never
dominating or seeking to control, never using coercion or force
however subtly. An internal logic will guide each session, and I will
help my client best if I really listen to their words and for their
experiencing, seeking to empathise and understand, and giving my
intuition its freedom. At the same time, I can trust that my
practice—which may look strange and insubstantial to critics—is
supported by over half a century’s worth of empirically grounded
theoretical concepts and structures; some of these have entered the
mainstream, and some offer humane alternatives to current fads for
counsellor-centred therapies and the medicalisation of human
suffering.

Can I sign my name to this? Is it true? The first part doesn't go far
enough: there's more than this to effective person-centered
therapy. As for the final sentence, I don't think I can extend my
trust so far. Despite its elegance, and despite being deeply loved,
person-centred theory is—as most theories eventually prove to
be—deeply flawed.
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Improving Vision Through Inner Awareness: Focusing and Seeing From The Core by Rosemary Gaddum Gordon, D.B.O., M.A. with Elizabeth Abraham

Improving Vision Through Inner Awareness:  Focusing and Seeing From The Core by Rosemary Gaddum Gordon, D.B.O., M.A. with Elizabeth Abraham | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
The undoing of these traumas, whether the acute and sudden or the chronic and slow is
accomplished by becoming present to our selves, our resources and our experience. There are
two particular forms of practicing this that we want to share with you at this conference. One
of them is Focusing (Gendlin) and the other is Seeing from the Core (Gaddum Gordon).
We’ll start with Focusing. “Focusing” was discovered by Eugene Gendlin in the 1960's, when he
was a professor at the University of Chicago. He and his colleague, the psychologist Carl
Rogers, became interested in why psychotherapy was helpful to some clients and not to others.
Gendlin and his research assistants taped hundreds of hours of therapy sessions and, much to
their surprise, concluded that 'successful' therapy did not have as much to do with the skill of
the therapist as it did with something the client was already doing. They found that after
listening to the tapes of many series of therapies, they could predict within the first session or
two which would be successful and which not. In the successful therapies, the clients
demonstrated from the very beginning, an ability to listen to the messages from their bodies,
rather than staying in their heads.
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Focusing-Oriented Supervision Greg Madison

Focusing-Oriented Supervision Greg Madison | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
As an inexperienced training therapist, I was anxious about seeing my first clients, so I willingly
acquiesced to the requirement of weekly group supervision. Supervision was a strange new
activity that consisted of meeting with fellow students and a seasoned practitioner in order to
explore what was really happening behind the closed door of therapy. I soon looked forward to
these meetings as an opportunity to compare myself with my colleagues and to exchange real or
imagined transgressions for the reassurance and advice of my more experienced supervisor.
Unless my colleagues and I were entirely unrepresentative, such 'comparison' and 'confession'
seems to constitute significant aspects of supervision, at least for training therapists.
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Thinking at the edge: developing soft creativity Guy Claxton * University of Bristol, UK

Thinking at the edge: developing soft creativity Guy Claxton * University of Bristol, UK | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Creativity in education often takes the form of concentrated periods of arts-based ‘light relief’ from
the rigours of the National Curriculum. In psychology, on the other hand, creativity is often
associated with a dramatic moment of ‘illumination’ in solving scientific, mathematical or practical
problems. This paper explores a third approach called ‘thinking at the edge’ (TATE) that is based
on a therapeutic practice called ‘focusing’ devised by American philosopher Eugene Gendlin.
TATE involves learning the knack of delicate inward attention to a somatic process of ‘epistemic
evolution’, in which hazy, pre-conceptual ideas are given time to unfold into novel forms of talking
and thinking. Particular forms of exploratory writing and exploratory conversation contribute to
this evolutionary process. It is argued that TATE forms a useful addition to the expanding suite of
‘positive learning dispositions’ that lie at the heart of learning to learn; constitutes a corrective to an
over-rationalistic approach to teaching ‘thinking skills’, and offers a clear example of how learning
dispositions may potentially be cultivated in educational settings.
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A Scientific Theory of Focusing Part Two

A Scientific Theory of Focusing Part Two | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Please read Part 1 first – otherwise this may not make a lot of sense!

What’s the difference between a feeling and a felt sense?

A key theoretical distinction in Focusing, Gendlin describes feelings as repetitive (the same old
feeling over and over), not needing the body (being angry but not sensing an anger place in the
body), and not changing (not carrying forward). Whereas a felt sense is freshly formed (the
quality of it is particular to the moment), is bodily referenced (we find it by paying attention to
the body), and tends to carry forward (in the shape of new thoughts and feelings unfolding).
Damasio’s distinction between a feeling and the feeling of what happens may be analogous. His
‘feeling’ is a mapping of a bodily state that is not yet conscious and which may link with old
feelings in somatic memory. Talking about our feelings may simply repeat existing patterns,
whereas his ‘feeling of what happens’ is an in-the-moment experience that implies a
connection with current changes in the body. The happening place is both brain and body.
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From Fragmentation to Integration 1

From Fragmentation to Integration 1 | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
I return always to Dr Eugene Gendlin's wonderful small book named Focusing which deals with how the body carries our brokenness in its very sinews.  His therapy, called focusing, is essentially all about listening attentively, sensitively and imaginatively to the body's pain.  In that book, somewhere in the introduction, he tells us that the client/patient who comes to therapy knowing what exactly is wrong with him/her is the one who makes the least recovery in the long run.  It is, rather, the patient/client who is lost, confused and knows very little, indeed is quite frigfhtened about what is happening in and to him/her both in body and soul or in body-soul, who makes the quicker recovery.  I like the term body-soul as modern psychotherapy abhors the Cartesian dualism which has warped the Western Mind and Soul for the lat 400 years.
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The Authentic Heart: An Eightfold Path to Midlife Love

The Authentic Heart: An Eightfold Path to Midlife Love | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
by John Amodeo.

"The Authentic Heart is a groundbreaking, insightful, warmly written book that I highly recommend to anyone wanting more loving, joyful relationships. John Amodeo addresses with great clarity, wisdom, and practicality the key steps that are necessary for building authentic, mature, loving connections--not only with others, but also with oneself."--John Bradshaw, New York Times bestselling author.

The Authentic Heart includes a chapter on "Focusing: A Path to Befriending Yourself."
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BODY DREAMWORK Eugene T. Gendlin Introduction

Dream interpretation is famously controversial. There are many theories, and even practitioners of the same theory usually differ about a given dream. The mere dream report cannot be interpreted without the participation of the dreamer. But the dreamer's interpretations are not reliable either.

The purpose of Freud's free association and Jung's daydream was to engender something to break through “directly from the ‘unconscious.'” Working with the body is a further development of their methods.

The body responds to attention. With a little training people can learn to put their attention inside their bodies and to let a physical quality come there. What comes might be expansive, or constricted, heavy, jumpy, or no word for it, just . . . this quality.

Then, if the person thinks of something else, the quality changes. The body responds with a uniquely different quality to anything, whether large or tiny. The question How is my life going these days? will bring a unique bodily quality, but so will noticing this little crease on the dress.

If one attends in the body and awaits a unique quality until it actually comes, then little steps come from it. They can answer questions.
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Enkele notities bij de eerste beweging van focussen Frans Depestele (2011; manuscript: 19831)

1 Focussen is in essentie het zich laten vormen en het zich laten openen van een felt sense. Dit is vaak slechts mogelijk en wordt in ieder geval vergemakkelijkt na het uitvoeren van de eerste beweging die ‘een ruimte maken' genoemd wordt (Gendlin, 1978b; 1982). Dit is een innerlijke act die de persoon alleen kan doen of in aanwezigheid van een luisteraar met behulp van diens instructies, zoals het gehele focusproces trouwens. Eén manier om deze ruimte te maken is het richten van de aandacht ‘in het lichaam', in het midden van het lichaam, de 'betekenisplaats' van het lichaam (de plaats waar je voelt dat iets je raakt), in een ontvankelijke houding, wachtend en vriendelijk verwelkomend. Dit, samen met de vraag: "Wat zit er mij nu in mijn leven in de weg om mij totaal goed te voelen?" Het is de bedoeling dat zich een 'body sense' vormt van datgene wat nu een probleem is en spanning geeft.
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Gendlins theorie van het ervaringsproces Frans Depestele (2011; manuscript: 19811)

Deel I Ervaren en verandering

Gendlin werd geboren in Oostenrijk op 25 december 1926. Op dertienjarige leeftijd week hij uit met zijn ouders naar de Verenigde Staten. Hij studeerde filosofie en vervoegde in 1952 de school van Rogers. Hij had ondermeer de leiding van de Wisconsin-studie over psychotherapie bij schizofrenen (Rogers, 1967) en hij was stichter en gedurende een 12-tal jaar editor van het tijdschrift Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, and Practice. Hij doceert filosofie en psychologie aan de University of Chicago. Vanuit zijn existentialistische achtergrond ontwikkelde hij zijn procestheorie. Men kan zijn werk beschouwen als een verder bouwen op wat Heidegger een 'being-in-the-world' en wat Rogers een 'organismic valuing process' hebben genoemd. Zijn filosofisch en psychotherapeutisch werk hebben elkaar wederzijds op vruchtbare wijze beïnvloed. Met de ontwikkeling van zijn experiëntiële filosofie en experiëntiële psychotherapie is Gendlin zich meer en meer gaan losmaken van de oorspronkelijke cliënt-centered therapie (Van Ryckeghem, 1975; Eymael, 1977; Lescreve, 1979).
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The Power of Being Human in Counselling and Psychotherapy – A ...

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It’s difficult now to recall with detail all that was said – it did last from 09:30 until 16:30 with a short lunch break. It did not drag though as some seminars can do.  Time seemed to fly by. All in all, it confirmed my feeling that the person-centred approach to counselling id the one I am more suited to or should that be is more suited to me?  The whole concept of the client knowing what hurts and what needs fixing seems vibrant for me.  Yes, it may take time but the fixing being done by the client, with close  accompaniment by the counsellor, is then more permanent, so that old demons are less likely to come back and haunt later. My notes are at home now, so will add some specific quotes later.
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Lee, Robert L., PhD.: Focusing Oriented Psychotherapy: A New Kind of Orientation

Lee, Robert L., PhD.:  Focusing Oriented Psychotherapy: A New Kind of Orientation | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Focusing Oriented Psychotherapy is an emerging family of psychotherapies inspired by
focusing and its roots in the philosophy of the implicit (Eugene Gendlin), psychotherapy
outcome research, and Rogerian psychotherapy. Fundamental to this orientation is the
explicit attending to a bodily felt sense of an issue (focusing). It is the body sense which
carries the whole of a situation. New information emerges from this felt sense and resonates
with the body such that meaning is lived further (not just known). Further steps of change are
possible from this new opening. Because content does not define the methodology, the
unique aspects of the person in the client and in the therapist become more central to the
psychotherapeutic process. This felt sense level of change is going on within all human
processes; thus, focusing brings depth to any psychotherapeutic approach. When focusing
and the function of the implicit in psychotherapeutic change are not known, then
psychotherapy (no matter what the orientation) may lose its potential to initiate deep and
lasting change. This is because insights, emotions, and behavioral change are not checked
with or modified by the bodily sense. Only if there is a resonance in the body (i.e. embodied
beingness) does a person “feel differently” and “live differently.” For example, clients have
said: “We went over and over the same material. I have a lot of insights into my past, but I
don’t feel that I have really changed.” or "I worked and worked on changing my thoughts that
went with my anger, but I still feel angry." (Doralee Grindler collaborated on this paragraph
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„It is what it is, says love ...“ Mindfulness and acceptance in person-centred and experiential psychotherapy, Karin Bundschuh-Müller

„It is what it is, says love ...“   Mindfulness and acceptance in person-centred and experiential psychotherapy, Karin Bundschuh-Müller | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
http://bit.ly/lTTrww
Abstract: Mindfulness and acceptance are key terms within person-centred experiential
psychotherapy and focusing. Here, this subject is looked at from three different angles: How does
the therapist in person-centred experiential psychotherapy succeed in being mindful and accepting
(the aspect of therapist variables)? How can the therapist facilitate the client to be more mindful
and accepting towards him- or herself (the aspect of the client variable)? How can the client learn to
develop a mindful and accepting attitude towards him- or herself (the aspect of self-help through
focusing)? The therapist core variables (unconditional positive regard, empathy and congruence)
are presented, with an emphasis on unconditional positive regard. Presence, a variable which has
been discussed since the eighties, is understood and described as a basis variable. Eugene Gendlin
generated a re-orientation within person-centred psychotherapy. The attention of the therapist does
not focus so much on the person expressing feelings and opinions. Instead, what is sensed on a
bodily level, even if it is still vague, is put in the centre of attention and is considered as the origin
of change processes. This makes it possible for the therapist to intervene in a more accurate way by
referring to the felt sense. Such a reference to the bodily sensed inner experiencing in the present
moment, even if not very clear yet, leads to a decisive change in the concept of person-centred
psychotherapy: the “dys-identification” or the development of a constructive inner relationship. In
focusing, which enables clients to apply the core variables of PEPT towards themselves and to
initiate a constructive inner process of experiencing and changing by themselves, these changes are
summarised in a condensed form. With regard to the issue of “mindfulness and acceptance within
the person-centred concept”, the author refers to statements by Rogers himself, but also by Gendlin
and more recent authors like Greenberg, Hendrix, Iberg and Moore. A comparison between PEPT
and Buddhism is made according to the example of the Japanese person-centred psychotherapist
Kuno. In this discussion, differences and commonalities of the two concepts are compared. The
author goes deeper into the theory of Thich Nhat Hanh and Kabat-Zinn, and compares these with
statements made by Rogers and Gendlin.
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The End of Belonging: Untold Stories of Leaving Home and the Psychology of Globalization

The End of Belonging: Untold Stories of Leaving Home and the Psychology of Globalization | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
by Greg A Madison, PhD.

Do we really know what we're doing when we leave our home to live in a foreign culture? Why do some of us keep leaving, travelling from place to place, never settling, never really feeling at home? In today's globalised world it is increasingly expected that many of us will go where the job takes us, but at what cost? This book tells the stories of 'existential migrants', people who left home in order to discover themselves. It also warns us that there may be an unexpected psychological effect from thinking we can just live everywhere.

Available from Amazon
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Body-oriented Interventions in Psychotherapy. Demarcation of a Research Object

Body-oriented Interventions in Psychotherapy. Demarcation of a  Research Object | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Leijssen Mia, Nagels Auke, Dekeyser Mathias
(Center for Client-centered/Experiential Psychotherapy and Counseling, University of Leuven)
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A Scientific Theory of Focusing Part One

A Scientific Theory of Focusing Part One | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Science hasn’t figured out everything about how brain and body interact, and it probably never
will. But in recent years it’s come far enough to be interesting – very interesting. It offers us a
new framework for thinking about our inner life. So let’s try crossing our experience of Focusing
with the science and see where it leads us.
This article is divided into two parts: the first lays out a basic picture of how we feel what we
feel in the body, while the second asks some specific questions about our Focusing experience.
The brain, the body and the nervous system
The brain is part of the central nervous system that extends to the base of the spinal cord, so
when we talk about the brain, we are already well down into the body. It’s just that nature has
found it convenient to put most of it into our heads, well away from all the stuff sloshing
around in our bodies. The central nervous system connects directly to the peripheral nervous
system that extends all through the body – to organs, muscles and every single blood vessel.
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Peter Afford
peter@focusing.co.uk
August 2010
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BODY BRAIN: Focusing in The Light of Neuroscience (a working draft)

BODY BRAIN: Focusing in The Light of Neuroscience (a working draft) | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Peter Afford ~ May 2006 ~ peter@focusing.co.uk ~ comments please!
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The most complex and wonderful living thing in the known universe… is sitting in your head!
Some 100 billion brain cells (neurons), each of which make between 1,000 and 10,000 connections
with other neurons, give us a living network of some 1,000 trillion connections. That’s a very, very
big number. If you turned the connectivity of the world’s telephone network into brain connections,
you would have a mere cubic centimetre of brain! Add the variation in ways each connection can
operate (far more than simply on or off), and you have a degree of complexity that is way beyond
comprehension – but enough for scientists to correlate many things about our human experience.
But focusers worship the body! We want to get out of our heads and into our bodies where we
feel felt senses and felt shifts. Without a brain, however, Focusing wouldn’t happen. You could not
choose to do it, you would have no awareness of your felt sense, you would be unable to listen to
what comes from it – in fact without a brain the body couldn’t generate a felt sense to start with!
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Suzanne Noel's : RECOVERY FOCUSING MANUAL

Suzanne Noel's : RECOVERY FOCUSING MANUAL | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
This Recovery Focusing manual is a companion workbook to Suzanne Noël's "Loving At the Edge: Recovery Emerging" book. It offers easy-to-follow instructions on how to apply felt sensing (Focusing) to the 12 Steps of Recovery, as well as how to integrate Focusing into our daily Program of Recovery. She offers a practical model for working with groups which begins with a grounding “Helper” felt sense, dips into “the worst” of the feel of a situation or issue, and gently guides us into the Best of Recovery. Recovery Focusing offers us an enlivening practice that easily enables us to connect and relate to ourselves, to others, and to a greater sense of “all that is.” Felt sensing is the ultimate act of self care. Always fresh and new, the insights we gain are invaluable, for they come from our own felt experience of Recovery!
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EVALUATION FOR PARSA'S HIGHER EDUCATION PSYCHOSOCIAL TRAINING

Prepared for

Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Support for Afghanistan (PARSA) Kabul, Afghanistan
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II. Evaluation of Focussing Methodology

My overall impression of this training programme is highly favourable. Although this was my first exposure to the therapeutic method of Focussing it was intuitively familiar to me, resonating as it does with other practices of self-awareness such as Mindfulness meditation and Vipassana which, to paraphrase the words of one PARSA trainer, invite one to listen to and observe non-judgementally one's body, feelings and thoughts.

Particularly impressive is the way this methodology has been adapted to take into consideration the specific cultural and religious contexts in which Afghan people's lives are embedded. Concentrating on oneself in this

context, I am told, is likened to performing Namaaz; that there's a verse in the Koran that says if a person listens to himself then they will understand both themselves and God. Rumi's likening of the body as a gift house for feelings also has resonance to a wider cultural area: the guest who must be received courteously and honoured in one's home is a feature central to Asian cultures, and its extrapolation to accepting difficult or troubling feelings is rich and potentially rewarding. Focusing, as described to by a trainer, is a “helpful skill” that works for both the literate and illiterate, a process by which one is able to enter “peaceful” places to relate with often difficult emotions and feelings; ....
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An unclear bodily whole1 E.T. Gendlin

You all know, I assume, that in therapy it is important to pay attention to feelings. And that just to explain and just to think and just to figure out and find causes and so on does not change people. And this is now well known. And we now have a next step from there. Because we find that if people have not been in touch with feelings, then yes it is very important to come to your feelings. But once you have done that and many people are still doing it and that's a big discovery: “Oh, I lived without my feelings, this is very different, big step in live, yes”. But once you have that, then there is a tendency to have the same feelings over and over and over, and over, and over, … the same feelings. And then j
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An Anthropologist in Taliban's Afghanistan by Patricia A. Omidian

An Anthropologist in Taliban's Afghanistan by Patricia A. Omidian | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
When Bamboo Bloom is a medical anthropologist's highly personal ethnographic chronicle of time spent as an aid worker and community outreach trainer in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. While managing to avoid notice by the Taliban herself, Patricia Omidian, an outsider but one who speaks a local language, exposes the searing realities of scarce access to education and health care alongside limited resources and personal loss in Kabul, Hazarajat, and Herat. Readers feel every pothole in the road as she traverses the vast, rugged country and share her distress over everyday Afghan struggles for survival. Yet, resiliency endures, both for the writer and for the Afghan people, even in the face of Taliban edicts. Omidian illustrates how Afghans must negotiate between the dictates of their own culture and the intimidation of the Taliban, wondering herself what characteristic or trait they possess to cope with the erosion of honor and freedom.

This rare, experiential narrative provides an insider's view of people and circumstances that reaches beyond ubiquitous news headlines of wars, invasions, coups, and droughts. It reveals the unexpected hazards, elusive joys, difficult decisions, and subtle complexities in a country where peace may come when bamboo bloom.

When Bamboo Bloom includes an account of the introduction of Focusing to an Afghan aid organization. Dr. Omidian is actively engaged in Community Wellness Focusing.
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Jayne Dough: Gene Gendlin on: Focusing partnership

Jayne Dough: Gene Gendlin on: Focusing partnership | focusing_gr | Scoop.it
Do I have what it takes to be someone's Focusing partner?

Two things are required – but every human being has them. One requirement is the capacity to shut up – to keep quiet and to be unintrusive company. When the other person is talking, it means that we refrain from every urge to impose something on the person. It means letting go of our many excellent ideas, interpretations, suggestions, and our desire to give friendly reassurances, or to tell what we did in a similar situation. And – during those times when the other person is quiet, it means keeping our attention on the person without hearing anything interesting.

The second requirement is the company of a human being. You cannot fail to have this capacity, since you are a human being. It does not require a good human being, or a wise one, or any special quality. It does not require some special way of being or showing one's humanness. Just you there.

(Gendlin, Focusing Partnerships, Folio. LINK)
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