European Trip III: Day 8 – Partial to the Parthenon

Day 8, Monday, June 28, 2015

The ParthenonI finally saw the Acropolis and, in it, the Parthenon. It’s one of those places I wondered I’d ever get to see. All my life it was an important ancient landmark to me because my mother was an art history teacher, as well as an artist. But she didn’t have to do too much drilling of it into my head because I was fascinated by it. And aside from the fact that the Parthenon had scaffolding around it blocking some of the structure, it didn’t disappoint. How did they get the stones on those huge columns up so high in those ancient times? I’m not sure of the historical dates, but to also know Socrates and his student, Plato, and his student, Aristotle, were wandering around some time around then, philosophizing, and that this was the cradle of Western civilization—it’s just an incredible place.

But Athens itself did not give me a good feeling, except for the area around the Acropolis. Too huge and chaotic for me—unmanageable.

Before Mick, Gill and I left for Athens we spent a long, difficult time trying to make reservations for me to get to the Greek islands. I had my heart set on Sondussa (I can’t remember the name exactly right now or may have spelled it wrong) because of the beaches, but it turned out to be too far out and too remote to be practical for this trip, so I settled on Naxos, and would take a ferry to Mykanos for a day before flying from there back to Athens.

But there was a ferry strike, which we hadn’t heard about, so all the flights were booked to Naxos. So when we stopped in Athens to naively try to get a ferry ticket for tomorrow, we were informed the ferries were on strike. But the guy looked up the latest information just to be sure and, miraculously, the strike had just ended.

Since I had uncancellable reservations in Naxos and Mykanos it would not have been good if I couldn’t get there.

Which brings up the economic-political state of this country, which I guess I should mention. A referendum has been set for the Greek people to vote on whether or not to stay part of the European Union. Greece is so much in debt to the E.U. it’s very bad.  People started panicking and taking all their money out of the banks. The banks closed down. No one could use their credit cards. But again, miraculously, the banks are scheduled to open again tomorrow and people can use their credit cards again. The vote is scheduled for the day I leave Mykanos for Athens, which is the day before I fly to Russia. Should be interesting. I’m not worried, like some people are.

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European Trip III: Day 7 – farewells

Day 7, Sunday, June 27, 2015

Koroni Not much to report today. It was pretty relaxing. Drove to Koroni with the same wonderful characters as yesterday. Beautiful town. Visited a very nice monastery. Had lunch together. Went to the beach, where I fell asleep again.

Interviewed Richard about all the changes that have taken place in his life since discovering the Three Principles. Had a snack-type dinner in Koroni, then ice cream. Said our good-byes to the wonderful Scandinavians, and to Mick’s friend Jan, who really got caught in the spirit of the people caught in the understanding of the 3Ps.  I’m going to miss them.

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European Tour III: Day 6 – Another day in paradise

Day 6, Saturday, June 26, 2015

Ruins at Messini courtesy of John ReccoAnother beautiful day in the European paradise of Peloponnesus. Today Mick, Gill, Richard, Anna Greta, Susanne, Jan and I drove to Ancient Messini, incredible old ruins of an ancient city still being archeologically unearthed.

We had to wait for a long thunderstorm to pass, which cooled things off considerably and which I was not dressed for, but we all had a real nice lunch together while we waited.

It was amazing for me to picture all these ancient Greeks running around here on the 4thCentury, B.C. That’s old.  We sat for a while in an Olympic-like stadium of ancient rock, picturing the kinds of games or fights that went on there.   In a stone amphitheater a crew was setting up a big speaker system for bunch of Tedx talks happening there that night—which seemed really out of place but kind of cool—but since they were starting at 9:00 PM, we couldn’t stay.

During lunch we had the idea that we should expand Mark’s 3P trek idea to a combined holiday sightseeing-in-ancient-Greek ruins (and beaches) with semi-informal 3P gatherings and one-on-one sessions with me. I like that idea a lot. There is so much wonder to see here, and plus the combination relaxes the mind and allows new insights to percolate easier. Next year! June or September. Stay tuned.

I don’t know if it was the very late dinner or something in the food or whether I was simply wired or what, but I had the most difficult time falling off to sleep last night, which is rare for me. I probably didn’t get to sleep until 2:00 AM!

I saw that Mick posted this on Facebook: “Having Jack be here in this beautiful place, an amazing group of people on the course (including my dear wife!), seeing through more illusion that I’d made up which allows me to reconnect more with the beauty that’s already in front of my nose within and without… It doesn’t get much better. Oh, wait… it just did yesterday!” Yup.

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European Tour III: Day 5 Sleeping on the beach

Day 5, Friday, June 25, 2015

It kind of amazes me how I can have such a good time and do such good work, having gone through what I’ve just been through in my relationship. But that speaks to the power of Thought and Consciousness.

The training worked out great, judging by the feedback I received. I think people are far better prepared now to do more effective work with clients. Richard had another monster insight. And I was surrounded by wonderful people, in the afternoon went to the beach with them, and after the session had dinner with them. And I absolutely fell in love with Greece.

This morning I went for a long walk and in the afternoon went for a long swim, so I got in my exercise, which was really necessary after pigging out so much at dinner and having really delicious ice cream after lunch (with my ice cream buddy, Richard). I was so exhausted in the afternoon that I actually fell asleep on the beach. Couldn’t have been a much better day. Now I can go on holiday for a while exploring Greece and the Islands, before having to work again in Russia.

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European Tour III: Day 4 – It can’t get better

Day 4, Thursday, June 24, 2015

Beach in GreeceThe first day of the Understanding the Deeper Realms of One-on-One Work training retreat was a success. The highlight was when I used myself and my own situation as a guinea pig and asked people, “If I came to you devastated and in despair about what happened to me losing the love of my life, what would you say to me as a counselor or coach?

People were all over the map.  No one at first gave me love, comfort, soothing and understanding, which is what I really needed at first to be able to hear any of the other good things people had to say. I was able to switch in and out of roles of being the client and being the “supervisor” stepping outside the process, commenting on the coaching or counseling that came my way.

There is such a difference when people say things out of deep listening and that deep connection, and when people say things they think are supposed to be said in Three Principles work.

We did a lot of deep listening practice. I’m really looking forward to tomorrow.

I LOVE Greece! The feeling here and the beauty are spectacular. We are in a retreat format so we met at 10:00 in the morning and took the afternoon off, where we went to the beach and I took my ½ hour swim in the gorgeous Mediterranean. Then we met again in the evening and had dinner together. This is definitely the way to go. Claire’s husband summed it up best when he said, “It can’t get better than this!” I can feel healing taking place.

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European Trip III: Day 3 Things go swimmingly

Day 3, Wednesday, June 23, 2015

Finikounda beach with boatsToday was a pretty delightful day. I got good sleep, I was so exhausted. Woke up in the morning in the Hotel Estia in the little Greek coastal town of Finikounda. I took a walk down by the shore, and it was the most peaceful thing. When clouds of any kind show up in the sky around here, as they did yesterday, it’s a newsworthy item, so today (and just about every day) the sky was bright blue, and the sea was a gorgeous, deep azure blue. Truly beautiful.

On my walk something actually occurred to me to do in my presentation tonight on healthy relationships, which was great because up until that moment I didn’t have a clue.

Came back, ate a little breakfast and went down to the beach. I forgot both my book and my earplugs, though. That was not too bright because I didn’t want to go swimming without my earplugs, given my possible ear infection, and I had been looking forward to just vegging out and reading. But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise because something actually occurred to me to do for my weekend retreat on Working with People One-on-One effectively from the Inside-Out. I’m not usually this unprepared before sessions but my mind had been too cluttered.

Ate lunch (the very gluttonous pastitsio), found Richard, who had arrived in a daze after driving and getting lost late into the night last night—it’s always great to see him—took a nap, prepared for my presentation, and suddenly it was time for it.

This was primarily for a group of ex-patriots who had settled in Greece, and had had some small exposure to the Principles before, on account of Mick holding meet-up groups where they watched videos.

The presentation went pretty well. I decided anything would be false if I didn’t deal with my own relationship woes up front and head-on, and I told people what I had noticed and observed from it, which had implications for all relationships. That seemed to work because it was certainly real.

People asked a bunch of questions and the discussion was fairly lively. Susanne really surprised me when she volunteered how much her life had completely changed since she had started my Extended Professional Training—her face has even changed; looks so much more relaxed—and Richard was very eloquent about how he came through his fear in the caves in Spain.

By this time it was too late to eat dinner, but I went out with a few people anyway and ended up having a light salad.

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How to stop searching for your sexy self! (podcast)

How to stop searching for your sexy self!.. with David Andersson This week I’m speaking to transformative coach and speaker David Andersson. David works with clients in a range ofsituations from people in psychiatric wards to people who are feeling disillusioned with life or their relationship and want something more. David and I are talking about how many […]

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European Trip III: Day 2 Greece

Day 2. Tuesday, June 22, 2015

The beach at FinikoundaI spent today mostly in a daze from lack of sleep and pain.  Landed in Athens. Mick and Gill picked me up at the airport, which was great because I realized I didn’t have Mick’s cell phone number.

We had a three-hour drive to Finikounda. I didn’t want to fall asleep in the car, but I had no choice; I couldn’t keep my eyes opened. I woke up with horrible jaw and ear pain. The jaw thing started when I was looking to buy a condo in Florida and had to sleep in a van one night, and I woke up with it. Then it went away for a while but came back with a vengeance during my last month with Amy. Obviously stress related; my thinking had gone down the tubes. Couldn’t chew without pain. But now it felt like it had worked its way into my inner ear, or was it an ear infection? My ear couldn’t clear. It was painful. Mick picked up some antibiotics for me over the counter (one can do that in Greece), just in case I needed them. I haven’t taken them yet, and won’t unless it gets worse and I know it’s an infection.

Mick deposited me at the hotel. I felt really out of it. Took a walk that evening along the beach. It’s really beautiful here. Okay, I can do this. I’m looking forward to it…

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European Trip III: Day 1 On the Road Again

Day 1. Monday, June 22, 2015

Willie NelsoOn the road again. Now I know how Willie Nelson feels.

I begin my third European trip blog. As I write this I am on a bus to Montréal, where I catch a flight to Athens. There’s a lot going on in Athens right now, but I’m not at all concerned. Suppose I get stuck in Greece, surrounded by wonderful people and gorgeous, peaceful scenery? I can think of worse things.

From the time I arrived back from my Spain-England-Scotland trip of last month I have hit the ground running. No rest for the wicked. I had one of the most difficult months of my life. I lost the love of my life, packed up everything I owned into a rental truck and drove 3½ days to Florida, started moving in to my new condo in Boca Raton, a place I know no one. And it was hot! Steamy! I was living surrounded by boxes. And well before I got everything unpacked I flew back to Vermont to spend my birthday and Father’s Day with my kids and granddaughter. That part was wonderful, but I also ran into some very difficult times with Amy in the process. I won’t go into that; she wouldn’t like it.

Psychic Reading

A highlight of the trip “home” was getting a psychic reading from Jean-Jacques Guyot, whom I trust implicitly and who never ceases amaze and to trigger new, huge insights in me. This time was no exception. All I will say about it is I went in pretty much feeling despair and some anger, and I came out seeing my relationship with Amy with new, much healthier eyes. It’s like almost everything was put in perspective. That’s the beauty of the Three Principles; one moment everything looks bleak, and in another moment things look completely different. I would tell you more about it but I am not willing to write that personally right now. Maybe by the time the book I’m working on comes out; who knows?

As I take my second bus out to the Montreal Trudeau Airport I feel weary to my bones. I need a vacation.

At the airport thoughts and images (which are also thoughts) of Amy bombard me and haunt me. I didn’t want to let her go. I had no choice. I see her everywhere. I want to share everything I do and see with her, as I have for ten years. But that is no longer to be. If she wants to know what I’m up to, she can read this blog. I don’t think she will. Anyway, thank God I know they’re only thoughts of my own creation. If I didn’t know this I’d be ten times more lost than I feel—a hundred times. It’s tough enough as it is.

Flight over was not great but could have been worse. I only got about an hour and a half sleep, if I was lucky. I spent the time doing final proofreading of final proof on the Three Principles history book: Paradigm Shift. Should be out in a month, I would guess. I hope I’m right. And I had to write some stuff for one of the papers Tom Kelley and I wrote, because the peer reviewers commented on things we had to fix for it to be published. So much to do—always it seems, in my life.

But I am looking forward to this new adventure.

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