Client: After therapy, I feel so good.
Therapist: What in therapy makes you feel good?
Client: I don’t even know. I can’t describe it in words. It can’t be described in words. It’s just…….it feels good.
This is what my client told me yesterday at the end of session. She had a lot to say during the session. She was disturbed and talked through out the session. She questioned and answered by herself. I was just witnessing all that was happening.
I had very few things to say during the session since she was answering her own thoughts. I was silent and just observing her with a sense of wonder, but with my whole awareness. Occasionally when she was silent too, I would think to myself if I should be saying something. I was trying to think how could I help her. I scanned through many different activities and techniques in my head that I learned so far in school and career, but didn’t feel like using any. The most appropriate thing I felt to do was to give her my full nonjudgmental, undivided, and compassionate attention, which I did. And the result is listed above.
After I got back home. I could not stop thinking about the session. I was thinking that I did not give any advise, used any complicated techniques, did not analyze or dissect anything during the session. How did I make her feel good? How can I bring the same quality to my every session? Then I thought perhaps it was my presence that made my client feel better? But what about my presence?
I started the investigation and remembered a story I read in one of Eckhart Tolle’s books. He also found himself in a similar situation. One time, his neighbor came over to him for a solution in the middle of night. He found himself just listening to her with his whole being as she was whining and complaining about a certain situation in her life. After a while, she recognized that whatever was going on does not matter. She found all of her answers in silence and pure presence of being of Eckhart. With his pure being and presence, he brought a new dimension to the situation. He described that it was a powerful moment of realization for her neighbor. He says the following about conscious presence: “When presence is a state of inner spaciousness. … You are still, alert, open to what is. You bring a new dimension into the situation: space. Then you look and you listen. Thus you become one with the situation. When instead of reacting against a situation, you merge with it, the solution arises out of the situation itself. Actually, it is not you, the person, who is looking and listening, but the alert stillness itself.”
It must be about our presence that brings healing in the room, I thought after reading it. According to quantum mechanics, we all are connected all the time. Actually nothing is separated from anything. We all share the same energy in the space we perceive as empty and human consciousness plays a big role to observe reality. According to quantum mechanics, it is the quality of awareness and consciousness that brings healing, creativity, and many more mysterious things we wonder about from the egoistic self. This state of pure being and/or active observer is very different than the state of ego. Dr. Goswami says precisely that in his book God Is Not Dead: “Surprise, surprise. We don’t choose in our ordinary state of individual consciousness that we call the ego the subjective aspect of ourselves that the behaviorist studies and that is the result of conditioning. Instead we choose from an unconditioned, the nonordinary state where we are one, a state we can readily identify with God.”
I think what Goswami is saying that we have to cultivate that nonordinary state of consciousness to be fully present to bring your whole being into the present moment. I perhaps was closer to this state of being or presence during the session. This is not the only time it has happened. This is an ability that I am cultivating with an understanding of quantum mechanics. It is very much possible to cultivate this awareness without the understanding of quantum mechanics though. I believe counseling probably is the only field that is closest to that state of consciousness. Could it be called Quantum Counseling, perhaps?
Gurpreet Kaur is a counselor who works at an outpatient clinic and also has a private practice. She is a doctoral student with professional interests in quantum physics, spirituality, self-actualization, and mindfulness practices as they all relate to counseling.