New Therapist Introduction: Jeff Wilfong
My name is Jeff Wilfong, and I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and certified hypnotherapist. I entered the psychology field after an intense spiritual calling. In 2000, I found myself devouring Buddhist books in a Barnes and Noble in Chico, California. From there, I delved deeply in Vipassana and Zen Buddhism, attending many retreats and studying with various teachers on the West Coast. I fell in love with the Dharma, “the Truth,” not because the system of belief appealed to me intellectually, but because I had experienced intense and profound spiritual states through the practical applications of what the Buddha and modern-day masters taught me. Up to that point, I was a member of a Christian household where faith was a bit stale and mechanical. With Buddhism and other Eastern spiritual systems, I found passion and energy.
I especially fell in love with the power of meditation and have had transformative experiences that radically shaped my consciousness in positive ways. The meditation technique was quite simple, but difficult to practice: sit, observe, do not manipulate consciousness, do not avoid, do not replace, be fearless. Attending many silent meditation retreats, I went deeper and deeper into the rabbit hole of spiritual doubt, exploration, and the intense and rewarding journey that this path brings. I found myself stuck at a crossroads in 2005, at the brink of feeling like my identity was dropping away, and I experienced a fear of the unknown overtaking me (a “no-self” headache). At that time, I met and studied with Adyashanti, and perfected my understanding of non-dual healing. With great trust in the teachings of current and past masters, I resolved my doubts and took the final leap to let the path unfold, naturally, and get out of my own way.
I mention all of this because, like a spiritual journey, a therapeutic journey must be transformative and deep. You have to be willing to sacrifice your old worldviews, old emotions, and even old relationships, to be able to find the peace, joy and contentment that you hunger for. You cannot use a superficial approach. Whatever system you use, you must jump off the cliff into the rabbit hole and deeply explore yourself, your thoughts, patterns, emotions and behaviors.
For this healing, a nondual approach is one technique that may prove helpful. Buddhism or eastern approaches are not the only answer, but they worked for me. The nondual understanding, which is consistent with the Buddha’s teachings, Advaita Vedanta, Taosism and more, holds both the Relative and the Ultimate truths. In the relative, we find suffering in the ordinary, day-to-day world of Samsara in our relationships, jobs, finances, emotional needs, and other concerns, and attempt to fix them. In the ultimate, as we let go of needs, desires, and barriers, consciousness transcends the ordinary into the Oneness and we find lasting contentment when we return to our source. It is when these two approaches are in balance that we find a flow. To get there, we have to practice, without attachment, and ask the big questions – Who am I? and Why am I here? We cannot simply replace one psychological pattern with another.
Therefore, as you go forth in the New Year think about the changes that you have always wanted to make, and the identities, patterns, and beliefs that have kept you from the change “the self” desires. We cannot transcend our lives without having a deep responsibility to ourselves, others, all animals and the planet. Let us create a better world for future generations. May all beings awaken.
Please visit my website www.alivecounseling.com for more information about me, my services and my approach. I am taking new clients at Middle Way Health weekday evenings and select weekends. I look forward to your call ((530) 864-3218) or email: firstname.lastname@example.org