The IEW is a combination of a Contemplation Intensive and an "ontological" consciousness work.
In a Contemplation Intensive, we spend most of our time contemplating such questions as "who am I?" and then communicating about this to a partner in a dyad format called a CCE (Contemplation and Communication Exercise). The purpose of this effort is to have what's called in the Zen tradition an enlightenment experience — a direct consciousness of the absolute truth of your true nature beyond belief or hearsay.
We question not for an answer but to experience the truth.
In the ontological consciousness work, we're invited to investigate the mechanisms of mind and self, to create insights into the nature and dynamics of our experience and the world in which we live. If you look in the dictionary, you'll read that ontology is the study of being, of existence. It is a deep and complex field, with various aspects frequently under debate by philosophers, scientists, and theologians.
The Cheng Hsin approach to ontology is not intellectual deliberation, but an experiential inquiry. We explore the way perception creates our experience of self, other, and the world. We seek to move beyond the habits of perception that limit us in our abilities, our relationships, and our lives.
In this workshop, roughly half the time will be devoted to pure contemplation, primarily in the form of CCEs. The other half will be talks and dialogues given by Peter about subjects aligned with this contemplative effort, as well as exercises and guided meditations to point the participant in new directions and support them in having insights and breakthroughs. Such a two-fold approach both opens and grounds our work.
Beyond setting out to become conscious of your the true nature, we will also work on such subjects as letting go of attachments, considering the nature of the body and mind, getting to the source of your experience, tackling the nature of real Now, exposing the illusions of self and life, and so on. It will be a purposeful week of contemplation and meditation to wrap up the new spring retreat.
Many of you may not realize it, but the core of Peter’s work is consciousness rather than martial. Openly investigating the questions of Being led him to an increase in martial ability, but it’s clear that this work extends far beyond the martial arts.
Consciousness work is not about acquiring knowledge. Where your understanding ends is where you start asking questions, and where Peter can begin to help you experience beyond what you know. It is at this point — within the framework of his unique experiential confrontation — that the fascinating ideas of ontology start to become real.
The first step in this workshop is learning how to approach our work — both individually and as a group — so if you are unclear about how to begin, that's just fine. Peter will work with you step by step to understand the nature of your self, thought, awareness, and being. The work becomes real out of your willingness to engage in a deeply honest level of questioning and communication.
About ten to eleven hours per day will be devoted to consciousness work in each of these new workshops. Together, we will meticulously uncover the very structures of mind that determine our perception of self and reality. As we break through habits of thinking and being, we’ll discover still greater levels of questioning, contemplation, and understanding. Amazing new possibilities will begin to emerge in our awareness as we approach new domains of perception and ability. Don’t miss this great work!
If such an undertaking sounds appealing to you, you are invited to participate in the Insight and Enlightenment Workshop in the spring.
Too often, the work of understanding ourselves amounts to little more than exchanging one set of beliefs and opinions for another. Many give up, thinking that they have exhausted all possibilities of encountering a truly powerful, transformative event. These workshops represent such a possibility.
The workshop will run from early morning until late at night. Sometimes you will be sitting for long periods before a break. As a participant, you will be listening to powerful communications by the facilitator and considering deeply what is presented.
Cheng Hsin consciousness work is INTENSE and demands your attention, energy, and commitment. The only other requirement is to be here.
If you're up for a mind-blowing adventure, consider yourself invited to this powerful event.
It is difficult to convey the real scope and depth of this retreat. If you have any questions after reading this material, please feel free to contact us: Ralston@ChengHsin.com