Clairvision is a school of meditation founded by Samuel Sagan in Australia in 1987 that offers talks, workshops, and courses all around the world. Its emphasis is on direct experience through meditation and offering training at a high level.
Phil Joseph and Liz Foley regularly visit Singapore to give talks and sessions, as well as offering the school’s 2-day “Awakening the Third Eye” meditation workshop.
What Therapy chats with Phil and Liz to find out why the Clairvision School’s approach to meditation and their courses make such a positive difference to the lives of so many around the world.
You have been longtime practitioners. Can you share how you discovered Clairvision and that impact?
Phil: Wow, I have been a student of the school for over 20 years, so the impact has been immense. From the first weekend I knew the school was something special… and ever since it has changed my life. The self-knowledge I have gained means I don’t see the world in the same way… instead of being blown around by the winds of life I am able to choose to do and to be what I want. My relationships are deeper and more nourishing, and my enjoyment of life more simple and keen. How do you remove the very thing that brings meaning to life and wonder what it would be like without it?
Liz: Discovering the school has also had a huge impact on my life. I was looking for a spiritual teacher since I was 18 years old, and saving to travel to India or the US where I had hoped to find one. A confluence of amazing things happened when I was 21 that led me to the school… incredible dreams and crossing paths with various people led me to an “Awakening the Third Eye” workshop in Sydney where I was living, and that was it. So many things awoke inside me, and I was on a path to self-discovery that I had not expected to happen so soon, and in Australia too! Since then it has been a central part of my life, and the most intense, awakening, and joy filled spiritual path has unfolded over the years.
How does Clairvision differ from other schools and methods?
Phil: To be honest, I’ve never gone to any other schools. From the first weekend workshop at the Clairvision School, I found the techniques worked for me… they immediately brought the sense of inner peace and meaning I was searching for. Though I wasn’t even aware that is what I was searching for… I just had this sense of an inner disquiet that I somehow knew would be addressed by meditating! And since that first weekend I have never been disappointed by the depth of the teachings, their applicability in my life, and the profound self-knowledge they have brought me. The methods I have learned at Clairvision have given me adventures in consciousness very real experiences not just concepts.
Liz: What really resonated with me when I first began the Clairvision meditation, was the emphasis placed on having a direct experience of the practices – whether it was the qualities of the inner space, or my perception of the heart centre – what really mattered was that I was getting in touch with the experiences myself, and all experiences were valid.
This particularly struck me as at the time I was working in very large metaphysical bookstore and so many people wanted to devour books talking about spiritual experiences and states and self-discovery. But so few people I spoke with were actually realizing that these experiences were available to everyone, that is was just a matter of practice. So this was incredibly exciting to have a pathway to journey inside and cultivate experiences beyond my mind.
The school’s introductory workshop is “Awakening the Third Eye.” Is this the path for everyone? What are some benefits of learning this method even if someone is not overtly on a spiritual path?
Phil: Something I find inspiring about being human is the incredible depth we all possess. We all carry within us the majesty of immense states of consciousness, filled with creativity and vision and connection. However, this is often hidden by the way we live… the speed, chaos, and demands of life trump the needs of silence, stillness, and inner reflection that are the foundations of a life filled with joy, clarity, and fun.
So, while a spiritual path is not something we are all conscious of following, any sense of wanting “something more” is, in essence, a spiritual path. And this first weekend workshop gives you the techniques to find your way to that “something more” whether it be centredness, an inner peace, better relationships or a clearer direction in life. The “Awakening the Third Eye” workshop teaches you how to systematically get out of your Ordinary Mental Consciousness and experience the clarity that exists behind this everyday noise.
Liz: The workshop really gives people a number of techniques that they can take away with them and continue to practice. It’s designed to really give people the experience of the inner space, and teach them practical, simple techniques that they can use in daily life. For example there is a daily meditation practice, learning how to manage your energy in all sorts of environments, learning to cultivate spiritual vision and perception, techniques for dealing with fatigue and headaches, a practice for super sleep (sleep that boosts and revitalizes you), and dowsing earth lines. And from there, it’s really up to people how they want to continue, whether they just wish to work on applying the techniques in their daily life or whether they want to continue going deeper with the techniques and attend more courses.
In general, the biggest obstacle for people who want to meditate and gain stillness and clarity, is the incessant chatter of the mind, as Phil mentioned. This particular meditation is very simple, so as not to involve the mind in the process! It engages methods to quieten the mind, so that we are not in a battle of fighting thoughts and there is space for experiences to unfold.
Can you explain what Ordinary Mental Consciousness means and why meditation may not be working for some people?
Phil: This is so key for me. A lack of understanding about the Ordinary Mental Consciousness (OMC) is the biggest barrier for people whose meditation is not working… as well as for people whose lives are not working. The OMC is the relentless noise, the relentless commentary in your head. It’s repetitive thinking, the bland ideas and beliefs. It’s that inner voice that won’t shut up!
To have hope of any real meditation experiences you must get out of your head, get out of the OMC. How can you have subtle experiences of consciousness when all you can hear is a replay of the same conversations you’ve already had with yourself?
I’ve helped many people whose meditation has become a relentless list-making exercise or a pointless daydream where they talk to themselves about what they are experiencing. Implementing the Clairvision techniques has been the way I have been able to transcend the annoying, yet seductive pull of the OMC. And in the same way, experiences outside the OMC give people the clarity to see the unconscious, mechanical way they are reacting and making decisions in their lives. As soon as you see these things, you just don’t want to be like that anymore and you begin to change.
Clairvision also offers many resources including free downloads of books and other readings as well as correspondence courses. Can you explain what the Knowledge Tracks are and how they work?
Phil: The Clairvision School offers training in meditation, spiritual vision, and self-knowledge. Students follow the teachings through retreats, weekly classes (in Australia, the US, and Europe), self-practice and the Knowledge Tracks. These are an extraordinary way to do the practices of the Clairvision School at your own pace and in your own home. A combination of lectures and practices, they give people access to a real depth of knowledge and a pathway to experience profound spiritual states. I am always humbled by the knowledge and opportunities they provide for people.
You travel regularly to Asia for workshops and Inner Space Techniques sessions. How is this technique different from other regression work?
Phil: The powerful thing about the Inner Space Techniques (IST) is that they use the inner space of the third eye to bypass the influence of the OMC. This gives you the opportunity to experience the reality of your consciousness beyond the OMC’s constraints and conditional ways of thinking.
It’s like a metaphysical psychotherapy – it both addresses the workings of the mind and transcends them by using this inner space. But the goal is not psychotherapeutic (though of course there are also the benefits of psychotherapy) but to realize the enormity of your being beyond the OMC. And that freedom and peace is there for all of us once you remove the stifling influence of the OMC!
Liz: To add to this, the whole IST process is designed for people to address their emotional and energetic blockages, so that they can overcome the limitations they are experiencing and step into a much greater and fulfilled life.
There is a sanskrit term called “samskarsa”, which refers to an emotionally charged imprint in the psyche, and it’s through working directly on this level that great resolution and transformation can occur. So when a client experiences regression, it is as a result of this process which is taking place in the context of resolving emotional and energetic blockages.
The act of “sourcing” lies at the heart of IST – meaning clients are led through a process of moving towards the source of their emotions, limitations, and blockages. These can manifest in so many different ways in life, and the approach is not to work on resolving issues from a mental standpoint, or focussing on how the emotions or blockages present themselves, but rather – from where do these emotions arise? And it’s through connecting people with the real underlying cause, that big shifts can take place for them.
The technique is also empowering for clients, as they are very proactive in the experience. The technique doesn’t use visualizations for example, but works directly with what the client is experiencing in the process, and the role of the practitioner is to facilitate the space and guide them through their experience. So this also has the benefit of the client touching on very deep experiences, and connecting with an inner knowing that over time can lead to great self realizations.
Can you share some examples of how IST sessions have helped people?
Phil: I’ve seen people get the job of their dreams, the relationship they’ve always wanted, and the spiritual connection that they have always longed for… it’s like watching somebody living behind a barrier, desperately wanting another life, and then seeing the obstacles drop away and them bounding into a fuller more enriching existence!
Liz: I have been practising the technique for 18 years, and have had the good fortune to work with hundreds of clients, and also to teach the techniques to hundreds of students, and the changes I have seen in people have been breathtaking. One important point to make is this technique is not a quick fix process. It requires clients to work over a number of sessions, as it uncovers a real depth inside. It can be so easy and tempting in today’s world to look for an instant fix – can I take a pill for that? Can I buy a solution that will fix my problem today? But this approach is recognizing that if we have a blockage or an emotional pattern that is limiting, its roots go deeper in our psyche. When we give this space to unravel, profound experiences can unfold. Not only getting in touch with the root, the source, of the issue, but most importantly getting in touch with a depth inside that was veiled by the blockage.
As a general reflection, the most touching aspect of doing this work is seeing people’s lives change. When an issue is worked through, so many things can open up for people not only emotionally and spiritually, but also great opportunities in life can present themselves. I’ve seen careers take off, love blossom, and health issues resolve. People come for IST sessions for so many varied reasons – it could be issues in the workplace, health disorders, relationship problems, family issues, grief and bereavment, a yearning to find meaning in themselves or their lives. Or it can be issues that people can’t pinpoint the cause, but nonetheless destabilizes or inhibits them, such as anxiety, sleeping disorders, or general commitment issues for example. No matter what people are faced with, there is an underlying cause that can be worked with, and it’s very rewarding and inspiring to see people overcome their issues and shine in life.
You are also here in Singapore this time for a free talk – Who Am I Really? In this fast paced lifestyle we have here, how does this question help?
Phil: Where do you work? Are you an Apple or Android person? What sort of car do you own? These are the questions we ask ourselves and each other every day. Unfortunately, they also become the way we define ourselves. It doesn’t take much to see this is a very limited way of perceiving the world and the people around you! Where is the room for dreams and aspirations? The space to understand the subtle feelings inside?
When we stop believing ourselves to be the collection of possessions, our physical shape, gender, and marital status we open the door to find what it is that truly makes us tick. We discover a rich inner world, teaming with creativity, insights, joy and wonder. The constant distractive powers of today’s world increases the demand that we stop and question who we are before we are swept unconsciously down paths we don’t necessarily want to go. If you really know who you are then the myriad temptations and speed of the Singaporean lifestyle won’t pull you offline in the same way. You have a centre to return to… When you meditate and take the time to feel who you truly are, your world becomes boundless!
Clairvision practitioners and teachers Phil Joseph and Liz Foley will be in Singapore between May 13 to 29 2015 to conduct IST sessions as well as offering their free talk “Who Am I Really?” (Thursday May 14 2015) and the school’s introductory course, “Awakening the Third Eye” workshop (Saturday and Sunday May 23 + 24 2015). Phil and Liz visit Singapore several times a year. Please email Clairvision.Singapore@gmail.com for more information or to receive updates. Find out more about Clairvision HERE.
Liz has played an active role in the Clairvision School of the past 16 years, instructing the meditation and IST in Australia, the US, and Asia.
With a background in design and fine arts, she ventured into film and animation, and soon became inspired to explore the use of digital media as a device for expressing experiences of consciousness.
While she has had a successful career as a digital media artist, Liz has focused the last few years on building a successful IST Practice. She continues to cultivate this, finding great fulfillment in helping people change their lives.
Phil Joseph has taught the techniques of the Clairvision School of Meditation throughout Europe, the USA, Asia, and Australia.
Since 2010 he has been meditating full-time, 8 – 10 hours a day. It has been the most intense, challenging, and exhilarating time of his life.
Though he left his career as a filmmaker to meditate day and night, Phil did not leave behind his camera. He has been conducing “zoological experiment”, filming himself during his intensive practices, hoping to be able to share honest accounts of his experiences and to provide a rare and intimate look into the trials and joys of full-time meditation.
Bringing over 20 years of experience and knowledge, Phil’s insight and clarity speaks to people of all levels.