For over twenty years Michal Levin has quietly but profoundly been transforming people’s lives.
Through seminars, workshops, meditation and writing – as well as private consultations – she has taught and, more than that, ‘transmitted’ a body of work that addresses the issues we all face from the deeply personal to those on a more global level. She is able to articulate and make real subjects that are notoriously difficult to consider such as spirituality, God, love and intuition. Her kindness, her willingness to offer whatever she can at all times and her ability to enable students and clients to truly experience and to feel the material is rare. Now, she has distilled some of her teachings into ‘Step One’, a foundation course that maps the territory/establishes the groundwork for the transformational work she offers. The concept – and it is no mere concept, but a pervasive reality -that she begins with is energy.
Some of the aims of Michal’s work can seem deceptively simple but it is what many of us are, in essence, searching for: ‘Everyday joy’ and the ability to be the best that we can be. It is a lifetime’s work but Michal offers a way to get started and to keep going, wherever you are in life, and this is underpinned by her resoluteness that we take responsibility for ourselves and the form our experience takes. There is no one ‘answer’. Step One is not a ‘quick-fix’ solution to life’s challenges but it is a long-lasting, loving and life-affirming step on the journey to our greatest selves. Michal’s own journey is extraordinary, authentic and deeply touching.
An Interview with Michal Levin
Q: More and more people seem to be searching for greater meaning in their lives, in many different ways, can you say more about your own search; for instance how did it start?
A: As a first year student at London University, I developed a curious symptom. I stopped being able to read- that is to move my eyes from one side of a page to the other. In a psychoanalytically oriented department, my condition was quickly diagnosed as a psychosomatic symptom, perfectly suited to Freudian psychoanalysis. And that’s where it started. (Actually, a tumour pressing on the nerves responsible for controlling movement of my right eye produced my symptoms, but that’s another story. It wasn’t diagnosed until about thirty years later.)
For several years I engaged in an almost classical psychoanalysis, often three times a week. Later, when I had collected a psychology degree, but still hadn’t found the answers I was by then looking for, I tried Jungian analysis, with two different, dear analysts. And for good measure, afterwards, I dipped into psychosynthesis.
Q: What worked for you? And what happened next?
A: Of course, I decided, therapy is all about the therapist and the relationship. Different theories have different strengths. But it wasn’t until the end of my thirties, when I had embarked on a successful career as a television journalist, written a book, married, divorced, and produced two beloved children, that I really found what I had, unknowingly, been searching for. (Though I still didn’t know that what had taken me into therapy initially, were not psychological problems, but the symptoms of a brain tumour that was only later identified.) The gateway that opened – just opened -the way for me was meditation.
The extraordinary, definitely unsought journey that followed, taught me to see what I could only call “energy”, and more, to understand the meaning of what I saw. It deepened my insight. It brought my intuition to the place where it blossomed and then flowered. It deepened my compassion, heightened my sense of connection to all others, and brought a profound sense of joy, peace and love. Sounds much too good to be true? Well it happened, and has continued to mature and develop over all the intervening years.
I wrote about this journey that showed me my life’s work in a book called the “Pool of Memory; The Autobiography of an Unwilling Intuitive”, first published in 1998.
Q: Tell me more about your story.
A: For more than twenty years from the momentous time of my breakthrough, I have worked as a guide, personal development mentor, intuitive, teacher, healer – call it what you will, I have never found a satisfactory name for what I do, with a very wide variety of people. They range from academics to business people, and include creative artists, medics, and psychotherapists and just about everyone else, each of who may see me a little differently. Obviously, I have not worked as a therapist. (Or a clairvoyant.)
Q: So what do you offer your clients and what is unique about this?
A: Intuition is at the core of my work – both the application of my own and the development of my client’s intuition. Morality and ethics also play a central part. I work with those from many spiritual backgrounds – from atheists to believers, Christians to Muslims, Cognitive Behavioural therapists to Jungian analysts. Many of my clients are very successful, professionally in their lives.
A basic emotional awareness is an essential starting point for engaging with my work. Clients may already have explored therapy and come to an understanding of some of their emotional underpinning (which might change, of course).
Q: You seem to have attracted some high level professionals by your work, in particular Americans, and yet, without wishing to be rude you are not in any way as well known as say Deepak Chopra, or even Byron Katie.
A: It would be wrong to say that I have worked with more so called ‘high level’ clients in the USA than in the UK or Europe. But Americans are much less self-conscious about the unusual form of my work and so happy to endorse it publicly. Brits often stay behind the strict confidentiality contracts that I sign with all clients.
Q: But you haven’t pursued a higher profile approach yourself?
A: No. Perhaps I could have taken my intuitive skills and “gone big”, or followed the New Age teacher route that often involves a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. But, I didn’t. I have not followed any career path at all. I have kept my head largely below the parapet.
I have worked quietly for many years; going deeper and deeper into my discipline, concentrating on individual clients and occasional seminars or retreats. For example, I led two series of seminars for medics at Penn State University Hershey Hospital called “Essential Practices for Advanced Medicine”. I have spoken publicly from time to time at venues in the UK and the USA; including, in the UK, at a CONFER Psychotherapists Conference and at Surrey University. In the USA I have spoken in Washington DC, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and elsewhere; but I have not sought professional prominence.
Q: And do you want to reach a broader audience?
A: Over the years I have been lucky and worked with many wonderful people, learnt, and continue to learn a great deal. My work has brought me much joy and fulfilment. My aim has been first real change in the lives of my clients, and second to teach to a receptive audience, an audience who found me, and was “ready”. I have not pursued a wider audience, or growth of my own business, I have aimed simply to do my best, and to be true to the knowledge that I have uncovered. Clients’ responses have surpassed any expectations.
At the same time, I have had a few concerns; most enduring has been my concern that I could reach so few people. Now, a grandmother and in the final third of my life, I think I have at last found a way to address that problem.
I still work with individual clients, but I have also constructed an in depth course, called Step One, that is offered online, in ten modules. Step One lays down the foundations of my work, starting with an understanding of energy and its implications for development, in a form that is intended to reach a wider audience and draw them into the work. Step One provides the beginning of a framework for a wider, deeper worldview that promotes authenticity and integrity, develops intuition and honours spirituality in a deep and satisfying way. Steps Two and Three are in preparation.
Q: So is Step One working and doing what you want it to do?
A: The reactions of the first students testing Step One are amazing. At last it seems that I am offering my work in a way that is accessible to a wider audience. I want Step One to offer participants a new way to find meaning in their lives, to contribute and to be their best selves.
Check out: How to Get the Best from 2015 Adobe voice audio message http://voice.adobe.com/v/ToqzPAaUp4k
For more info: www.MichalLevinInstitute.com
© Michal Levin 2014