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What Will I Discover?

At the "Into The Mystic" Enlightenment Intensive Meditation Retreat - You will discover the power and beauty of surrendering to a simple process that can take you to a depth that must be seen and experienced to be appreciated.

The devotion of going for Truth together and supporting each other with deep contact and increasingly real communication gives rise to an atmosphere of affinity and nurtures the sense of trust and safety you have come to know us for. You go through predictable and well know stages as you work with and begin to go deeper with the technique.

As you begin to relax and open, the masks come off and you become more willing to let yourself be seen in your fear, anger, guilt, shame, insecurity and messiness. As you let go of the need to hide, you begin to de-identify from fixed and inauthentic ways of being that you have been living from and these dissolve as you communicate them to fellow participants.

These fixed states of being suppress real emotion, passion, personal power and fulfillment of the true self. As you let go of control and real emotions emerge, people are often seen to settle into their body in a new and fuller way than before. You may experience some degree of bliss in the form of simple deep happiness or profound inner joy in just being. Life and existence may become somehow deeply OK after many years of being not OK. We often see a natural life energy and inner beauty begin to emerge.

For many people this is such a profound experience they think the technique has been fulfilled, but really the stage has just been set for a deeper and more spontaneous level of self inspection. De-identification from fixed states of being, release of energy and relaxation of preconceived ideas about reality eventually leads you into new realms. You begin to penetrate the illusion of life and touch into divine realities.

Often the basic construct of the opposites is shattered and you awaken beyond duality into ultimate reality. Participants can enter into union for a timeless instant or, in A Course in Miracles terms-a Holy Instant. Union is with Truth, God, Ultimate Reality, the True Self, Creator, All That Is, etc. What a person calls it doesn’t matter. It is That which cannot be named.

Sooner or later you drop out of union and begin to re-identify in the realm of relative reality but what you have awakened to is never completely lost and will always be accessible to your consciousness. It becomes your choice whether to pursue your awakening more deeply or not and how much and how soon you choose to integrate what you have awakened to into your life.

In many Buddhist and Yogic traditions these initial awakenings are considered the beginning of real spiritual practice. They enable us to live more from who we really are instead of from our neurosis or a fixed personality state and they make it possible to carry out spiritual growth in the realm of reality as opposed to the realm of ideas. True fulfillment in life now becomes possible because we can choose to live from who we actually are.

Not everyone goes into union and it happens at various depths. We can’t actually make it happen. We just create the circumstances where there is a high probability that it will happen. When it does happen it is a spontaneous event that occurs through the grace of God or the Mystery or whatever one chooses to call it. Whether or not a person breaks through is not all that important; participants get huge benefit just from doing the practice. Working with partner after partner in a setting devoted to awakening develops discipline, presence and the ability to make real contact with another individual. You learn how to alternate between getting yourself across fully to another and setting aside your own processing to fully receive and be there in service to another. It is great training for life and for counsellors.

What Can I Expect?

The “Into the Mystic” Intensive is less a personal growth workshop and more a meditation retreat…no belief system or view of life is taught. Although deep psycho-therapeutic benefit is often received, it is not fundamentally a psycho-therapeutic endeavor. This workshop leans strongly into the transpersonal or spiritual realms. 

It aims at a piece of the puzzle, an important and central piece, and that is to awaken a person more to the true nature of the essential individual. It is capable of producing deep spiritual awakening at the core and shifting an individual’s fundamental perception regarding the true nature of self and existence. When a person awakens to their true nature it does not magically evaporate the problems of life or all neuroses but it does birth the possibility of living from who you actually are and the possibility of real fulfillment in life. As one participant said “It is the ultimate correction”.

The “Into the Mystic” Intensive is a 4 ½ day residential workshop starting at 7:00 pm on Thursday and completes at 11:30 on Monday. You are asked to set aside any and all distractions and engage in a monastic lifestyle so that your energy and attention are freed for the task at hand. You will be doing partnered contemplation in 40 minute periods and through the day you will have breaks for walks, rests, meals and lectures. It is a total support system for you to make your own inward journey to explore reality and discover who you are through your own awakening.

Your Workshop Team

The retreat is led by Herman Commandeur MTC and supported by Karen Goodfellow MTC, RSC.  They are both Master Therapeutic Counselors (MTCs) and both have a Certificate in Transpersonal Psychology through Clearmind.

Herman is a formally trained and certified master facilitator for the “Into the Mystic” Intensive with over 4000 hours of training, practice and experience in this method. He has participated in, staffed or facilitated 65 Mystic Intensives in Canada, the US and Asia. Karen is also very experienced in producing, co-facilitating and leading the senior assistants for the Mystic Intensive. Both are insured in their private practice and registered with The Association of Cooperative Counselling Therapists (ACCT). Assistants are also trained and experienced in how to support participants in this specialized method.

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