FINDING FREEDOM WITH THE LIVING INQUIRIES
with Sumitra Judith Burton
What if we were able to meet each new moment with eyes and heart wide open, unclouded by projections from the past or desires for an imagined future? What if we could give up the war, quit fighting with and trying to change the reality of our responses to daily life situations? We’ve learned a lot about how we want to be, and yet often fall short of our ideals.
The Living Inquiries offer a simple process for unraveling and releasing the stuck beliefs and sensations that veil the freedom that is inherently alive inside us. As the stories, memories and sensations stuck in the body are clearly and thoroughly heard and seen, they tend to pass through and be finished, allowing a sense of Freedom to be experienced.
I am deeply honored to be a facilitator of The Living Inquiries. Each day brings new adventures, interacting with these tools in my world. After falling in love with Scott Kiloby’s work in early 2012, I trained to become a facilitator of the Living Inquiries, and have since been passionately involved in both facilitating and being facilitated in many inquiry sessions. I find this work to be life-transforming!
Many tears have been shed, old wounds liberated and assumed identities released along the way. At one point in sessions I began noticing images of myself lying face down under water, or sometimes under cement – “Deadish,” I remarked. I was confused about how to proceed with life after all the mixed messages and frustrating situations I’d experienced. A feeling of “hopeless” appeared a lot, and “unlovable.”
I looked at the words, listened to their sounds, and followed with growing compassion the sensations that resonated in my body. I “rested” with all of this, watched these realizations bubble up into the light, allowed everything to be exactly as it was, and experienced the sensations (which before had seemed so scary that they might kill me if I allowed them to surface). More recently I’ve felt and seen images of an amazing dragon inside me, rising up and expressing its power.
With the help of compassionate and skilled facilitators and trainers, I have gradually seen that the potent images, dramatic thoughts and painful sensations are just coming and going in the field of consciousness or awareness, and as I offer less resistance, suffering lessens. After many years of exhaustive self-discovery work, I can now see the formerly stuck places loosening, softening and breaking open, and the river of life flowing more freely.
The Living Inquiries process is immensely practical and supportive. We become intimate with what’s showing up in life, learn to welcome it, experience how it feels (rather than pushing it away), rest with it, open to it and allow it to be exactly as it is. You can learn to facilitate a session for yourself (self-inquiry) and join in with support groups on Facebook where many people meet and share ideas, struggles and successes.
There are also times when calling on a skilled facilitator is a wise step. Living Inquiries sessions are different from compassion and curiosity, at the triggers, images, thoughts and sensations – mistaken identities – that show up in life and appear to bind us. Once they are seen clearly, they tend to release or dissolve.
Since my certification as a facilitator, I have witnessed acute instances of fear and anxiety release quite easily with these simple, direct tools. As well, I have witnessed in myself and others long-held compulsions and addictions loosen and give way. And I’ve been happily surprised to witness long-term physical pain respond also to the inquiry process. We’ve heard for so long about the mind/ body connection, but to see the amazing results is wonderful. Often times the mind is directing muscles in the body to contract, perhaps as an attempt at protection.
Join with me to take a look – it could change your life!
“I have sat with countless therapists and practitioners over the years in an attempt to heal early trauma, so it was a surprise when I had my first session with Sumitra to discover that I had not experienced someone holding a space of 100% acceptance for me before. Sumitra continually held the most loving, gentle and accepting space; and rapidly became a role model for me so that I could learn to do that for myself. Sumitra is a very skilled facilitator – she drops the perfect question in when needed to help me open to my experience, and is comfortable remaining quiet and simply holding a space when things are naturally unfolding. I will always be thankful for the incredibly loving and safe space that Sumitra holds, and her skill as a facilitator. ~ J.
“I feel so fortunate to have met Sumitra during our immersion training with the Hakomi method and to have received her thoughtful guidance with Scott Kiloby’s work. She is a bright light who embodies what she teaches and shares; she truly lives from the heart and creates a safe, nurturing environment for beautiful self-discovery to unfold. I am deeply grateful for what Sumitra has brought to me, and highly recommend her Living Inquiries sessions.” ~ L.
“You have a way of being present and totally in the moment. When you work with me, each little thing that comes up seems of utmost importance and worthy of infinite time spent looking at them. It feels like a reincarnation each moment working with you.” ~ C.
“It has been a real pleasure being facilitated by Sumitra for the past 6 months or so and having someone who is skilled at facilitating with the Living Inquiries is a real blessing. Sumitra makes it very easy to feel safe when I am having a session and I feel that it is very important with this kind of work. Thank you Sumitra for all your help and support and great sessions.” ~ M.
“I have experienced a gentle dissolving of body contractions with Sumitra’s facilitation. I cherish her divine feminine essence breathed into each word as she guides me on this simple weaving of looking within. Thank you dear Sumitra for your light of inquiry.” ~ A.
“Our facilitation was like no other experience I have had with facilitation in that Sumitra was just present for me. She witnessed, she held such a deep space and guided me through a self facilitation process intertwined with the living inquiry principles, so that I was able to see that the pain and sadness I felt were OK. She sat with me while I wept and it was one of the most cleansing experiences of my life.” ~ A.
“Sumitra held the space beautifully during our session. I felt bathed in the radiance of Sumitra’s quiet, warm, steadfast presence. The level of rest that I reached during the session was very soothing and peaceful. I experienced great value from the time spent together. I fully endorse her as a Living Inquiries facilitator.” ~ D.
“Sumitra is warm, wise and understanding. In the process of working with her on the Living Inquiries, I have received valuable insights that have led to a more peaceful and joyous life. Highly recommended!” ~ S.
“We have tried everything to get rid of suffering. We have gone everywhere to get rid of suffering. We have bought everything to get rid of it. We have ingested everything to get rid of it. Finally, when one has tried enough, there arises the possibility of spiritual maturity with the willingness to stop the futile attempt to get rid of it and, instead, to actually experience suffering. In that momentous instant, there is the realization of that which is beyond suffering, of that which is untouched by suffering. There is the realization of who one truly is. ”
~ Gangaji ~
YES I AM BROKEN, BUT I AM WHOLE!
You do not heal ‘from’ trauma.
You simply come to know yourself
as Life Itself.
And you turn towards the wounded place.
And you flush it with attention,
which is love.
And maybe the wound will always be with you.
Maybe you will always walk with the hurt.
But now, you hold it. It doesn’t hold you.
You are the container, not the contained.
It doesn’t control you any longer, the wound.
Because it is drenched in awareness now.
Drenched in You.
Loved by You.
Even celebrated by You.
You do not heal ‘from’ trauma.
You find healing ‘in’ the trauma.
You find yourself at trauma’s sacred core.
The One who is always present.
The One who can bear
even the most intense feeling states.
The Indestructible One.
The Infinite One.
The Powerful One.
The trauma itself becomes a portal to God.
To the Absolute.
To the Safety of Yourself.
And you will cry out in joy,
and you will cry out in sadness,
and you will cry out in relief,
and you will cry out in revelation,
“Yes I am broken,
but I am whole!”
– Jeff Foster