Michael Brown’s “The Presence Process” is a book I would have never picked it up, let alone read and followed its instructions, without my coach Tom Volkar demanding that I do. And I’m glad I did.
Unfortunately it’s not an easy book to read. Mr. Brown’s words convey wisdom that can be life transforming, but his writing style isn’t terribly accessible.
But once understood, it truly deepened my understanding about how life, and most importantly, our mind works. I’m aware that I may be coming across like a doe-eyed teenager admiring a cute pop singer, but I’ve been thinking and writing about what I learned from this book for the last several weeks. It deals with an all-encompassing, foundational aspect of life that if I wanted to talk about anything I end up talking about the lessons from the book.
And that lesson is this: emotions can get stuck in your body. And stuck emotions can skew and distort your worldview and life experiences. Worse, left to fester long enough and they becomes illnesses and health problems. The only way to unstuck these emotions is to feel them. You feel them by paying attention to it, and experiencing the emotions, without resisting or judging.
That sounds so simple but I accept that I do everything but. “I shouldn’t have to feel this way.” is one common line my mind utters. Another impulse is to distract myself by surfing online, either scouring news or researching some music gear. Just anything to take my mind off the reality and let me roam around in funner spaces.
It’s a concept that’s been conveyed elsewhere, too. If Mr. Brown was the only one who advocated the idea it may seem far-fetched, but my exposure to mental health issues and subsequent lessons I’ve been learning all point to the same thing. The Presence Process simply points to a new layer, one level deeper from my previous understanding. But it makes a big difference.
Right before encountering this book, I was developing an exercise to rewrite my subconscious programming. And I was getting some results. But attempting to reprogram my mind without dealing with the unresolved emotional issues that create those programming to begin with, is like trying to blow away the smoke without putting out the fire. I may be able to improve symptoms but can’t fix the root cause with that approach alone. When you remove the real source a lot of the symptoms go with it. Then installing new programming will be much easier.
I realize I’m talking in abstracts here without going into specific examples, but today’s focus is to point out an important source — I’ll tell you about specific examples in other posts. For now, please know that this book is the latest addition to the list of books that transformed my understanding of life. It does demand a bit of commitment/investment from you but its message is well worth the effort.