By Francine Cockerill
The following quote comes from Let’s Be Still the Teaching Manual that accompanies the book Quiet Magic by Pauline McKinnon.
‘To link ‘magic’ with the word ‘quiet’ may seem to be a paradox. And yet, perhaps the simplest way to discover the real magic of life is by not trying in any way to find it at all, but by being open to positive possibilities, allowing them to transpire. And that is the essence of this teaching program.’
It is also the essence of the Stillness Meditation Therapy (SMT®) experience and the therapeutic process when I work with children and parents in private sessions. Whatever the ‘presenting issues’ happen to be, positive change occurs on many unexpected levels. How is it that by simply sitting still and feeling safe enough to close our eyes for a period of time can bring a whole consciousness shift? It may be either subtle or profound – but ‘magic’ as an experiential process happens!
Within my sessions and supported by an atmosphere of calm, relaxed ease, insights come through varied art activities and creative play. Parents feel less vigilant and oppressed by the stresses of parenting and problem solving. They can view their child in a new context and if they join the stillness experience, they have at firsthand an unspoken understanding that can only deepen the bond between themselves and their child.
Over several sessions, a foundation is laid for positive change. As one parent expressed, her child now has stillness in his tool-box, close at hand when in need. Many clients revisit stillness sessions at various life stages to reconnect with this valuable life-skill.
In the school context, the magic of stillness becomes a precious refuge. This is most successful with the co-operative support of teachers, staff and therapist working together – while respecting the philosophy and values of the school and the teaching styles of the year levels.
In that environment, over time, a bond of trust is assured which gives children permission to feel comfortable in the ‘space’ created by the therapist. In that space is fostered what can be translated as quiet time, relax time and mind rest. In that way, stillness then becomes an integral part of the school curriculum.
When the teachers themselves actively participate and look forward to stillness time then they become role models for their children. This shared experience flows on into the classroom and other aspects of school life.
Stillness MeditationTherapy has a special part to play in all aspects of daily life … if only we all ‘just let it occur …’
© June 2015