A note to the interested person:
This is a writing that goes into some detail and depth on the reasons classes may be held and what may be some of the approaches and attitudes to take that are useful in learning.
It is not an easy reading. That is, for it to be useful, it needs to be considered. Learning in the spiritual sense is like approaching many other complex or comprehensive works. It takes time and the proper approach to be successful. The only difference is that the "real" approach and learning takes place in heart and is above words and forms. Thus the consideration and means are varied and different than linear, verbal teaching. It is through experience that one learns. These classes, then are a taste of that process.
If you do not want to read all the details, or get bored with the verbiage that follows, you may skip to the bottom. There is a link there to another page of questions and answers, and a link on that page to email for driving directions to the class site on that page. However, should you do that, it would be a good idea to ask yourself why the rest of the material is placed here below, and if, by leaving it or not at least giving it a cursory once over, if this approach is of any potential value or complementary to what you are now doing or seeking. Another way of putting that is if you are able to learn through this manner.
Classes are some of the outer faces of the Teaching. They are not the Teaching itself. Yet It can come through the work in a class. The Teaching is that which is from a greater point of view, always present and active, and from which one gains, or can gain, a sense of reality and a movement toward the next step. It is also that which is referred to as a guiding spirit or the guidance of the Infinite Divine in movement toward Itself. A class is a reflection of that Guidance, and, if it is effective, through which that Guidance may come.
It shows its faces in many ways. For classes are set up for many different purposes. The resultant intention is to move beyond the class to more real living and implementation of what is real - behind and through the words, forms, methods, approaches, and practices. It is always tailored to the steps, needs, and capacities of the people attending and taking part, which can be on many levels and includes both those present and those further away.
The class also must, if it is to be real and of any value, reflect and carry through it the understanding and awareness from the point of view it approaches and delineates. There must be a real need for presentation of work, and it must be from an overall point of view and process of work in harmony with the overall guiding Teaching.
The face and forms then will have the potential to open the way for conveyance of the the correct information or experience. This of course depends upon the proper conveyance of the teaching through the assistance, guidance, and focus of one who both knows and is in tune with - harmonizes with - the Greater Teaching and the recipients. Therefore approaches, methods, and content may vary widely to convey this teaching. If the students, or would be student can catch the teaching, they can possibly learn. If they fixate upon a method or approach they form the beginning or continuance of a cult. The Teaching then is non-existent from the point of view of an active, vibrant, transmission.
Generally speaking, teaching and classes evolve in an ongoing situation. As with being exposed to any situation of learning it generally starts with an introduction and then continues to get more focused or complex (or simple) and complete. For the person who comes into an ongoing class, the process and work preliminary to their entrance is missed. Therefore they will have to catch the sense of the approach, as that is one of the prime ways one can then get in tune with and catch the teaching. Preparatory reading can be helpful here. But even more so, an attunement to the people, process, and presenter is far more effective. The class continues the work that was before. It is built upon the basics that were conveyed and the needs to step further.
Depending upon intent and need, a class may be a means to lay a groundwork; convey information; introduce a point of view, attitude, approach, or more; convey a sense, or feel, or experience; or open the door for more real contact and learning. It can be a means of instruction or advancing qualities that are needed in a community, or nation, or world - even if the people attending the specific classes are not aware of it. It can be a vehicle for contact with other persons, for uses and purposes not related to the teaching or information purportedly conveyed. It has many uses, and these are some of them.
In addition to the reasons for having classes stated above, there can be an ongoing group or grouping of people (which are not the same things) working or attempting to work together in a more real way, pointing toward further experience. They will have gone through preliminaries in understanding how to approach a class; what to look for; the point of view to take; how it is of secondary value, but can be used to make contact with the more primary Teaching through openness and attunement directly, or indirectly through unfoldment. It will also be understood that the work is more inclusive than simply what is put in from of them. It may require real effort to get further toward the kernel of Truth.
While there may be many practices done in a class, it is understood that the intention is not to keep doing "practice" in a controlled or isolated environment, but rather a stepping stone to learning in the greater school of life, and as a student of the Way. It it is further understood and accepted that just because a practice is given in a class and may be applicable there, it is not necessarily applicable or useful as a personal or ongoing practice for the individual. Therefore a person in the setting of a class will not try to grab on to what is presented there as their own thing to do or to avoid. It is up to the guide, if that person has one, to assist that individual in prescribing their practice, not the individual by exposure to desire. If there is a general guide to the class with real understanding, that person will convey the need to continue or work with practices in ways which are applicable to the group and those who make it up.
There are many techniques and methods used in classes. Some of them are subtle. Therefore it may take some time for an attendee to begin to become aware of them, to access them, and to appreciate their value. There are some approaches which require the attendee to make a change through trial and error. They may require a change of focus, attitude, point of view, or method for the attendee to move toward being a student. Some, like story work, can be done in a group. Others, like meditation or contemplation may need work in solitude - or the reverse for each. In any case the teaching through the class is just a means toward that function. It is not for the end purpose of entertainment or conveyance of information.
There may be times that what is needed to convey to both the grouping and group runs counter to what is usually accepted as "study". The curriculum of a class can contain all sorts of things that are not "spiritual", educational or intellectual, or informational in the conventional sense. It may be that an attitude or sense is what is needed. For example a group of people may be too serious and need frivolity to counteract that. As usually is the case, to convey the sense, there is excess. So the pendulum of experience swings back to the other side and then needs its correction. For the person who comes in to a situation acting like that, or one in which it takes some time to gain a feel for the method or approach, or one in which there is a learning in progress; he or she will have to put in abeyance their own perception and let themselves be acted upon, through attunement and intuition, by the mind, breath, and heart of both the grouping or group and the Teacher. If they cannot do that to gain a sense of what is going on and them make the step to becoming a part of it, they can not learn through that medium - at that time, in that way.
When one approaching a class begins to get the understanding that there may be many reasons for have a class, many approaches, and many methods of conveyance of a teaching, they will have a better chance of functioning within and through that framework, with the possibility that they may even begin to learn. But if they seek instant knowledge, information, or experience; or want it in a certain manner, then they would be better off going elsewhere. It sometimes takes patience and putting desires and a point of view in abeyance to open the door to the possibility of another, more real understanding. If one does not want to do that, he or she is not a candidate for that class. Read the page titled Questions and Answers about the Classes for more information.
Then read the writing: The Purpose for Meeting.
After reading these pages, if you still feel drawn to experience a little of this approach, please go the the contents page of this site and familiarize yourself with it and several of the writings. You would be well to pay some attention to the following pages. It is understood that this is quite a lot of material. It will give you a much better basis for understanding and feeling some of what is going on - BUT, you do not have to do it. No one is going to give you a test on the information. It is there for those who wish to go further and for you to start your class now.
All of the material and information and links above lead and point to potentially more real learning. The spiritual path calls and unfolds in relation to sincerity, need, and capacity. It includes far more than books, written lessons, and classes. These are limited yet can be very applicable and also fulfill the real teaching for specific uses. The path of realization and function further includes and points to that of initiation and the True Guide. It is the class of life that they point toward; and it is through a multitude of methods that it is stimulated. If you feel you are inclined toward it, a class can possibly be of benefit. Of course, like anything, it must be the right class.
If you have read all the information above and still are inclined to attend a class, read, the practice on breathing love. Try it. Then please read about story work.