Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah
Driving back from Bexhill on Saturday I was asking myself this very question. I teach (or remind) at three homeopathic colleges and I enjoy them all. Each has its own flavour and culture, and I was beginning to be able to define what it is that makes Val Lawrence’s college a joy to teach at.
Small is beautiful
It is a small and friendly yet focused college, where the students can benefit from the high level of input they receive from all the tutors. Homeopathy is fascinating and the small year groups mean that we as teachers can make sure the students understand and can then build upon each subject as it is covered. We can tailor the content, with time for questions and discussion whilst keeping on track.
The student’s practical experience is supervised at the college weekends so that they can learn and prescribe in a very supported way that enables them to gain solid experience and confidence before they graduate.
The atmosphere that this generates is very positive - creating and holding a learning space.
Beyond the basics
The timetable covers homeopathic philosophy and remedies, holistic anatomy and physiology, case taking skills – all of which are core subjects. And yet there is so much more to being a homeopath than just the academic theory.
At the college Val has ensured that the students are given the opportunity to learn how to be a practitioner in the fullest sense. The counselling and communication skills, the ability to manage their practice and the ongoing personal development that enables growth as individuals and professionals.
I enjoy teaching about menopause and the “Heroine’s Journey” some women may find themselves undertaking, helping patients with high blood pressure and cholesterol, discussing remedy profiles and all the practical aspects of our work in helping patients. But alongside those key areas, it is also a delight to spend time exploring relevant and powerful areas of personal and professional development - as we did this weekend.
On the Saturday afternoon we worked through frameworks that gave insights into the beliefs and patterns we have as individuals. What assumptions we make, the limiting beliefs we hold about ourselves and others and how to become more aware of these often invisible filters we view the world through.
As practitioners this is essential work, and sometimes overlooked as we cover the vast breadth and depth of our homeopathic world. And yet, if we do not understand more of our inner landscape we can limit our effectiveness in applying this elegant and kind system of medicine.
We need to understand what is “our stuff” and “your stuff” so that as we sit with our patients we can do so through clear unprejudiced and non-judgemental filters. Allowing ourselves to be truly present for the person who has come to us for help and support.
We all benefit from moving beyond the patterns and beliefs that keep us in the dark.
I love light bulb moments!
Some years ago I added NLP (neuro linguistic programming), coaching and hypnotherapy to my homeopathy practice portfolio so that I could offer patients more support in healing and moving forward in their lives. I love watching the light bulb moments as patients make connections about their lives – witnessing this is one of the great privileges of the work we do as practitioners.
It is also wonderful when one sees this happening for students, and we do.
The smaller groups help but for me personally, it is also because the college’s approach gives me the opportunity to draw on more of my skills as a teacher to remind the students how much they already know.
Lynne Russell BSc FSDSHom MSCH MARH MBIH(Lic.) is a homeopath, coach, NLP and hypnotherapy practitioner based in Lewes, East Sussex and in West Sussex www.chantryhealth.com