The Presence Process: book review

PresenceProcessBookThis book, written by Michael Brown, goes on the list of books that will always hold a special place in my heart! That list includes The Four Agreements, The Radiance Sutras, and The Tao Te Ching.

The Presence Process is a practical guidebook to connecting with what Michael Brown, the author, calls Present Moment Awareness. Being present! Brown goes on to say that the purpose of The Presence Process is not to feel better, but to get better at feeling.

Being present has been a conscious longing ever since I was introduced to the concept in a book called Be Here Now (Ram Dass) which came out in 1971. I read and re-read that book and got it intellectually. And it planted a seed that was to germinate for many years. Oh, I KNEW I wanted to be PRESENT and really had no idea how to make it happen. I even got a custom license plate frame that said “I’d Rather Be Here Now” to commemorate the journey to present moment awareness although, on a conscious level at least, I hadn’t really started on that journey. It wasn’t until I became acquainted with The Presence Process in 2014 that the seed would start to blossom and the conscious journey would begin.

The Presence Process is a self-facilitated, 10 week process for accumulating “present moment awareness” that is based on three components: consciously connected breathing, conscious responses, and weekly text & perceptual tools. Each of these “components” is described in much detail. There is also much in the way of helpful explanations for the processes and I found many things on my second pass through the book that I didn’t remember on my first read.

There are two ways you can explore The Presence Process. You can just read the book and not do the breathing exercises, OR, you can go all in and do both. According to the author, you will notice improvements in your life if you just read the text. However, he recommends you dive in fully and include the breath work to get the maximum benefit.

I have journeyed through the process twice along with a support group. This group had it’s own dedicated Facebook page and we participated on a weekly conference call facilitated by the group leader, Christian Minson who I highly recommend. (Christian is a certified Transformational Breath trainer and has a number of classes and weekly breath group events in the San Diego North County area. I am a regular participant in his Monday evening breath group that meets in Del Mar. Contact Christian for more details.)

This was a life changing and enriching journey for me and I intend to go though it again, perhaps on my own.

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