Dear Tim,

Thank you for your encouragement to meet in our Areas to discharge about Harvey's death. I have been a part of many such groups by now and have uncovered life-changing insights as I discharge about my own relationship with Harvey.

It has been helpful for me to discharge in a group, rather than just in sessions. It has also been helpful to keep discharging deeply and over time about my relationship with Harvey, rather than see his death as an ending point. I will continue to discharge about Harvey, and I will always love him.

On July 25, we had a meeting in the West Berkeley RC Area to remember and discharge about Harvey. The meeting was attended by about fourteen people. All of us seemed moved to be together as we discharged and shared stories. Some who came are involved in our Community. Others had not been very involved for years but wanted to discharge about Harvey.

We began with brief introductions and mini-sessions, then together shared several rounds of pleasant memories about Harvey. It was powerful and heartwarming to hear each contribution. There was much discharge throughout, both tears and laughter.

Then we did another round describing Harvey's ideas that have been important in our lives. Here's a sampling of them:

 

  • courage and integrity
  • the difference between the person and the distress
  • the difference between thinking and feeling-thinking as the guide to action
  • there are no human enemies
  • all people are hurt/oppressed
  • beauty and order.

 

At this point, I shared my thoughts:

"When someone whom we are close to dies, it can bring up our feelings about death and dying, our own possible mortality, the loss of those we love, and unresolved issues in our relationships. We bring to our feelings about Harvey's death our restimulation from other situations. Our chronic distresses tend to emerge here. Harvey's leadership, boldness, and clarity function like a lightning rod.

"In RC we know not to blame a person for his or her distresses and to counsel him or her instead, which is why we have a policy in RC about attacks. (If you have feelings that pull at you to blame Harvey for any distresses, have you done any better than he did to change the world? How would you have counseled him?)

"Even if you never knew Harvey Jackins, if you have heard or used the ideas of RC, his work and thinking have affected your life. Harvey's influence has inspired many thousands of people all over the world to begin to transform society. He was the leader of one of the most significant movements in human history. He was able to unlock the puzzle of human irrationality, and he made clear how humans can recover their intelligence. He has given us the tools to transform our society-and we can go forth!

"You may want to discharge tonight, using these questions:

 

  • What do you know about Harvey Jackins, his life, and his work? What did you respect or appreciate about him the most? What did you like or love about Harvey?
  • What was or is your relationship to Harvey? Are there any issues still to be resolved on your part? How do you feel about his dying?
  • Are you familiar with Harvey's writings and ideas? Which ones have been most important to you? How can you personally carry on the work that he began?
  • What commitment would you make to him in his memory? What commitment would you choose to make to humans reclaiming intelligence through the use of RC?"

 

Then we each took turns discharging. People's chronic distresses came up as we discharged about Harvey's death. It was a joy to counsel people on these.

There was great warmth, humor, and closeness among us throughout the evening. As a result, we are at a new point as a Community. Even after many years of relationships among us, we got to know one another better as we remembered Harvey together.

Gail Mandella
Berkeley, California, USA 


Last modified: 2016-09-01 08:17:08-07