Dear Yuan Tze and Melissa
First of all, I want to express my very deep gratitude, appreciation, happiness, awe, and thanks for your dedication to, and compassion for, all of us on this 'voyage to the shore.' I feel so very, very fortunate to have been able to attend not only the retreat, but also four of your introductory free talks in the San Francisco Bay Area. During one of these talks you said, "open yourself to the possibility of a better life, open yourself to what I have said (about hope, health, healing). What have you got to lose?" At that point, I agreed that I had absolutely nothing to lose, as I was so very desperate to find a way to feel better.
This, I believe, was the beginning of my opening. I believe this decision led me to be more open to the group healing you gave in Berkeley. I had spent the last two years increasingly miserable, in body (pelvic pain from a number of growths in the body), mind , emotion and behavior. I was filled with grief, confusion, and constantly thinking that my life had ended at the physical loss of my family members, at the loss of my health, my security. There seemed to be no way out. After a number of your lectures, I realized that I was feeling better sometimes physically, but even more importantly, in my mind. I was saying more positive things to myself and fewer negative thoughts seized my consciousness.
Before the retreat, I had never done any Qi Gong before, except an hour at your Mills College Seminar. I had no idea what to expect, but knew I was going to give it my best try. Encouraged by your lectures, and the Qi-field, I really was able to try my best. What ensued was a miracle. I have suffered from chronic depression for the last 33 years and also from very intense anxiety for the last year and a half. During the two weeks of the retreat, I felt joyful, light and free for the entire two weeks!!
This has never happened to me before, ever! I felt a crucible of good feeling, a deep contentment and joy, firmly planted within me.
During the course of the two weeks, my focus and my desire shifted away from wanting to “fix” my health problem, to just appreciating the experience of being in a joyful and relaxed state where I was learning so much and feeling so connected to life. I felt assured that if I learned more about this state of being, there is no doubt I would be healthy.
During the healings I often felt deep contentment completely fill every cell of the body/mind.
As I look back to review the retreat, I see it as the best gift I have ever given myself. I am changed in many positive ways; how I see my life, the external world, and life in general is profoundly and beneficently transformed to a deeper, wider, happier view. The experiences and teaching and information from the retreat plucked me out of the past and placed me solidly in the present. I am now seeing a bright future ahead, instead of the constant worse-case-scenario thinking.
What’s more, is that when I start to feel less-than-joyful, I have concrete tools and practices to pick up (and the willingness to pick them up, based on the known experience that they work), to elevate my state of mind/consciousness. My relationship towards myself is now a kinder, more appreciative, more encouraging, and more loving one. I am often just filled with love that feels like it’s bursting out of me towards everyone and everything. I see my life as a natural, whole totality versus a string of problems.
Of course, every one of us had a different experience, but as I looked around on our last day together, I saw many, many open hearts, opened to let life in. I am excited and happy to see what’s next and know that when challenges arise I have a new and healthier frame of reference.
Even though it’s almost three weeks since the retreat, I am continuing to receive many gifts and benefits from the work we did together. Noting patterns, their causes and digging deeper has provided some beautiful insights and a very special moment of self-love that gives me hope for more positive changes in my future.
Again, I thank you with all my heart!
With deep appreciation,
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