We want to start by communicating to you that the great majority of us are teachers, not therapists. Even those of us who are therapists, or therapists in training, are not going to be relating to you at Trillium Awakening events as if you were in therapy with us. Rather, we will be serving you in the role of teacher, as coach and facilitator of your own unfolding. For the most part, we do not dispense advice. We hold you to be the highest authority on your own life and process!
We’d also like to talk to you about some of our policies for this event, including those concerning physical and sexual boundaries, and the use of alcohol and recreational drugs. These subjects can be awkward to talk about and you might even have a reaction to them. However, we’ve found from past experience that if we don’t address these topics directly, there can potentially be a lot of confusion and unnecessary pain for everyone involved.
We ask you to please keep in mind that our work together can go very deep, and you might experience intensities and ranges of feelings that are unfamiliar to you. Most people, and this might include you, will tend to be more open and vulnerable during this event, so we ask everyone to please use their utmost discretion to guide their behavior. Be as sensitive and aware as you can concerning your own and others’ sexual and physical boundaries. You might surprise yourself in the next few days with either feeling more open than ever before or perhaps feeling that the normal expressions of affection and greetings such as hugs might feel too much for you right now. We invite you to honor these shifts in feelings in yourself and others.
We consider touch to be very human and natural, and we also know that while touch is frequently very supportive, it’s not always welcome or appropriate. So we will pause to sense your receptivity, acknowledging that people may be in different stages in their journey and even have specific needs in the current moment regarding touch. When in doubt, we will ask your permission before touching, rather than assuming we know what you want. We request that you also do the same with regard to other participants.
It is important to mention, also, that it sometimes happens that teachers, mentors and participants might begin to have feelings of attraction and love for each other. While such love and attraction are a natural, positive, and alchemical effect of the transmission of this work, it’s important to bear in mind that strong feelings don’t necessarily mean an overt sexual connection or romantic relationship will result or be appropriate.
We also want you to know that along with love and attraction, feelings of devotion might arise as well. They are certainly not required as part of our process, but if they do arise, devotional feelings can be extremely powerful and yield initiatory experiences as we awaken into our own divine humanity and see that manifest in one another. All of these feelings are important doorways to your own enlivening and awakening process. If you are moved to express your devotion in physical or tangible ways, please first confer with the person to be sure that they are comfortable with your expression and want to receive it.
We want you as participants to know that we have an internal agreement as teachers and mentors that during the event we will not act on feelings of attraction in a sexual way and that there are real and serious consequences for any teacher or mentor if these guidelines are not followed. These consequences are an indication of how protective we are about the safety of the container we provide in this profound work that everyone does here together. If there is a mutual attraction between a teacher or mentor and a participant, our staff has created guidelines to follow after the event ends, to support the greatest possible level of integrity and safety for everyone involved. If strong feelings of attraction arise between participants of course you are free to explore these feelings together if there is mutual consent, however, we ask you to please honor preexisting relationship commitments with utmost sensitivity and care. Because our events can create such big openings in people, if strong feelings of this nature arise in you, we suggest you speak to a teacher or mentor for guidance and support.
While we’re on the subject of sensitivity, we’d like to mention that many people are not only highly sensitive to scents from personal products but can even become quite sick from them. Therefore, we ask you please to refrain from using any scented products on your body while you’re attending this event. If you are a smoker, we ask you to please smoke outside far enough away from the building that smoke can’t drift back in.
For legal, professional and ethical reasons, we ask that everyone please not drink alcohol during or prior to course hours. We also ask that no one use recreational drugs at any time during this event.
We also want to speak about our policy of confidentiality at this event and at all of our events. To create the most safe and sacred container possible for our work, we ask that everyone maintain confidentiality about what others have spoken here in both the large and small groups. You, of course, are welcome to share with others your own personal process in whatever ways feel right for you. We also request that you keep confidential any written materials we hand out at our courses, as they are intended only for the specific people who receive them.
If there are any questions and concerns about these policies, please feel free to address them now in the large group, or later in private with a teacher or mentor if that is more comfortable for you.
We want you to know that all of us who are serving you at this event are deeply in accord with these policies. We hope you’ll understand that our intent is not in any way to stifle anyone’s passionate feelings, but rather to create an environment of mutual trust with each other while we explore what may be some deeply sensitive places in our being.