The Still-Point
February 14th, 2015, Posted by admin |  No Comments »

Guest Blogger: Robert “Bob” Wright, Jr., Ph.D., COFT


I became a certified Open Focus trainer during the Spring of 2005. As a newly hatched practitioner, I fully and enthusiastically embraced my new skill set by rigorously practicing the various Open Focus exercises several times per day. Then, after about 3 months of steady practice, a funny thing happened to me while walking back from the supermarket loaded down with groceries. As I neared a busy intersection in NYC, I paused to readjust the 10 bags of groceries I was carrying. Once I had shifted the weight, I looked up and began to notice that “something” was different. So, instead of continuing my walk home, I just stood there wondering, what was different!


At that moment, my mental light bulb came on and I said to myself “Oh, I see, my mind is quiet; I’m not thinking anything—there’s no mind chatter.” Suddenly, the weight of the 10 grocery bags I was holding came into my conscious awareness, so I started to walk slowly down the street in the direction of my apartment building. After another few moments, it occurred to me that I had not experienced this quiescent brain state in quite some time—perhaps in over 20 years. Then I blurted out “My mind is as clear as a bell…this feels absolutely wonderful but I had almost forgotten what it felt like to be quiet…I’m not thinking about anything and my mind is simultaneously sharp and crystal clear!”


Well, a really good thing about NYC is that you can walk down the street talking to yourself in a loud voice and no one even bats an eye. While that aspect of City life may sound strange to anyone who has never resided in New York, “the locals” are sure to understand what I mean. By the time I arrived at my apartment building, I had had an epiphany: my crystal clear as a bell mind was due to being in a global Open Focus state. This was my first experience with what it means and feels like to experience Open Focus at the higher levels and I reveled in the experience.


A most interesting aspect was that while in that state, as I walked back to my apartment, I noticed that I also had enhanced attention to details and a simultaneous diminution to noise pollution: I could literally see the pores in the bricks as I passed each building; moreover, all colors seemed more vibrant—the reds were really red; and the spray paint graffiti colors no longer annoyed me, and the honking car horns and other loud noises not only didn’t bother me, I hardly noticed them at all!


When I reported back my experience to Dr. Fehmi after attending another workshop training in Princeton, he gave me this wise advice: “Bob, just keep fully immersing yourself into the experience, into whatever is happening and don’t worry about trying to find meaning.”


Well, now that I have almost 10 years experience using Open Focus and working with clients, I can say without any doubts that I continue to be amazed by the efficacy of Open Focus; how it literally and figuratively “peels away” levels of stress, anxiety and pain just like an onion. And, as we all know, there are many many layers to an onion—likewise, with our internal stress—it just seems to keep on coming, so regular practice and use of the various Open Focus exercises not only helps peel away and dissolve your stress, anxiety and pain by generating a Relaxation Response, it also opens up a unique opportunity to experience a StillPoint. That’s a sweet spot for sure and with repeated practice of the Open Focus exercises, you too can experience the global Open Focus state where you are simultaneously aware of background and foreground and can “hear” as Krishnamurti says, the silence between the notes.


Until next time, be safe and be well.



Robert “Bob” Wright, Jr., COFT


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