Before and outside of story there is phenomena, the world existing as it IS, without description nor meaning: IT IS BEING. Being has two aspects: THAT we ARE; and HOW we ARE (being). 'That we ARE' can be understood as the embodied sense of ourselves. We are the embodiment of the story of our whole life, including the future we are living into, as we have made it mean. Embodiment means how our structure, postures, motions, and affect (feeling, mood, facial expression), are the beliefs we hold and the choices we are making. 'How we are (being)', is a question evoking a description and labeling of our embodied state within the circumstances that aroused them, and the way we are acting in the world. 'How we are (being)' as the question, "Why am I being like this, right now?", is an inquiry of the embodied state. It offers access to our personal developmental pathways, the nature and sources of our beliefs, by our responses to the immediate circumstances. Once fully clarified, aspects of our responsiveness can disappear, allowing a space for the next question, "How would I like to be?" In this question, the possibility for a transformation of the belief and our embodied state, is opened up. Finally, "How could I be like that?" allows an imaginative response without expectation, to exist. Transformation occurs with the appearance of a new response with an experience of new sense of embodiment. The distinction between rational thought and knowledge, and being, is an acknowledgment that knowledge is not synonymous with being and that there is something else required to have that knowledge inhabits us so that it becomes a way of acting in the world .


Our potential, likewise, is not some state we come to achieve but is a lifelong development of a mastery of various human skills. Mastery can be defined as the ability to perform with the finest distinctions before increasingly discriminatory witnesses. Learning various human skills including communication, embodied practices, vocational skills, family, and social contributions is a source of novelty. Our potential is developed through bringing attention to bear on exactly that prospect for development and could be measured by the relationship between novelty and mastery in our lives.


Crucial to our human development, over our lifetime, is mastery of our langauges: emotional, structural, and rational.
    1. Mastery of our emotional language is in the movement of the emotional mode seamlessly from one state to another according to the change of circumstances. Prevents chronic emotional states that lead to chronic diseases. Improves mental health and recovery from physical illnesses and impairments
    2. Mastery of our structural language is in structurally versatility. Structural practices, closely associated with emotional language, can be an access to the motility of core belief, as well as broadening the base of physical capacity and physiological functions. It prevents injuries, and assists recovery in physical and neurological impairment
    3. Mastery of the rational and abstract languages is in the development of skills of presencing, reflection, analysis, and conversations that provide access to the motility of our core beliefs and identity. It uses diverse tools including the arts. Moving between the whole picture and the details this is mastery of the functions of both right and left brain functions. We become masters of poetry, complex problem-solving, design and making.
There are three special states to being fully human and adult:
    1. Play. Playing like an adult deals with the very real state of the world that nothing is necessarily going to be a certain way. Play is an embodied conversation in a to and fro manner, without expectation. It lives in a willingness to be vulnerable and authentic;
    2. Presence. The full attention and immersion in the embodied engagement with the other(s). It is concerned with holding space for others and our self, to be in play. "The performance is in the listening", Sandy Robbins, Director, Dept of Theatre, Delaware University, USA;
    3. Deep Play. A sense of wonder and sacredness of the condition, a 'being with' in a whole and complete way. No purpose at all, yet may draw forth new ways of seeing the world.


  • Ackerman, Diane,2000, Deep Play, First Vintage books
  • Cuddy, Amy, 2015, Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges, Orion