“How Going Blind Opened My Eyes” with Ole Vadum Dahl

by Terry Patten

I’m delighted to announce that I will be joined on Sunday, September 21st at 10am Pacific by Ole Vadum Dahl for a conversation we’ve titled “How Going Blind Opened My Eyes.” Although he lost his sight at the age of 17, Ole is a prolifically creative leader, the founder and director of the largest post-graduate psychotherapy academy in Denmark.

His journey to becoming the leader and teacher he is today is a powerful example. It shows not only how adversity can transform to strength and purpose, but also how opening the “eye of spirit” and awakening from limited identifications can transform our lives.

As a child and into his teens, Ole had a talent for drawing, painting and photography, and he wanted to become an architect or a graphic artist. But when he was 17 years old, he was diagnosed with a rare genetic disease that meant he would lose his eyesight entirely. This suddenly changed everything. Up until that point, he had been identified with his visually- based talents, and they were his main source of self-confidence and sense of self-worth.

Losing his vision was disorienting not just in the obvious, direct sense of plunging him into visual darkness. It also threw him into a profound crisis of identity. He was still a very young man, and he was overtaken by intense anxiety and depressive states. People began interacting with him as a handicapped person. But he couldn’t identify with that any more than he could any longer identify as an artist or an architect. This disruption propelled him into a search for his true identity, which was essentially a spiritual journey.

As Ole often says, “I am not a blind man; I just can’t see.” He says that this question of identify has been the foundation of his life’s work. From the beginning, he has been helping people discover their embeddedness in their personality and ego identities, and helping them recognize that they are more than that. The school he founded is named “ID Academy” because it focuses on comprehensive in-depth integral processes of identification and dis-identification.

When people can begin to make their personality and ego structure an object instead of being embedded in it, everything in their experience and their lives can change. Ole believes he has an impact on people because he relates to them on a being level, in a way that is both personal and spaciously impersonal.

I hope you’ll join us as Ole and I dive into an inquiry of identity and change, crisis and redemption, and what it means to be more than who we think we are.

About Ole Vadum Dahl

Ole Vadum Dahl is the founder and director of ID Academy, the largest post-graduate psychotherapy academy in Denmark. He has more than 30 years experience in psychotherapy, coaching, and spiritual and personal development and has taught in Denmark, India, USA and Europe. He has pioneered several cutting edge techniques and training modalities, most recently in Integral philosophy, psychology, spirituality and life practice. He has authored five bestselling books in Denmark on self-development, therapy and coaching.


Sunday, September 21st at 10:00am Pacific; 11:00am Mountain; 12:00pm Central; 1:00pm Eastern

*Find Your Local Time

Please Note: There will be a limited number of lines available on the live conference call, so we encourage you to listen online if possible. To make sure you can get through by phone, we encourage you to dial in early.


To download the audio after the teleseminar is complete go to the Beyond Awakening Audio Page We look forward to your attendance!

The Beyond Awakening Team

Confirming Our Open Intelligence For the Benefit of All

by Terry Patten

candice-o-denverThis past Sunday’s Beyond Awakening featured a dialogue with Candice O’Denver entitled “Open Intelligence Outshines Experience — Uniquely in Each of Us.”

Candice O’Denver is a brilliant and extremely well-educated mother and grandmother, as well as a true “Renaissance Woman” whose teachings are serving people all over the world. I have described her work as one of the most innovative spiritual teachings in the world today, but Candice rarely uses the word “spiritual” at all.

During our conversation, we explored some of the creative leading edges of her teaching work. Her talks and writings express, in my opinion, some of the highest non-dual spiritual instructions; and she expresses them in elegant, original, fresh, and universal terms, without the usual spiritual associations and baggage. The system she teaches is called Balanced View  also the name of her international organization which makes her teachings available freely “for the benefit of all.”

Our conversation ranged widely, hinging upon my noticing of a series of elegant distinctions that are implicit in Candice’s choices of words. For example, instead of calling her instructions “pointing-out instructions” (the phrase used traditionally in dzogchen), Candice speaks about “confirmation.” This choice of words connotes that our relationship to open intelligence and freedom is always already full and doesn’t need to be “pointed out” to us (as if it were “over there”) but is more properly “confirmed” (because it is “right here”).

Candice spoke passionately about the need for the subject/object duality of God to be “wrathfully destroyed.” Several times, she quoted this passage from the Bible; “You are my Beloved and in You I am well pleased,” to demonstrate this, emphasizing that “You” and “Beloved” are One. I agreed, adding that this involves making a shift from a theistic reaching out to an invisible entity “out there,” to the courageous boldness of saying I am God.

Another fascinating (and “spiritually futuristic”?) aspect of Candice’s teaching is her expertise in technology and information systems, as well as her deep engagement with art and music. All these fields are avenues for the expression of Balanced View’s work.

On one hand, she expresses her teachings in terms of “data” and “intelligence” rather than “consciousness” and “phenomena”, and her team has invented a computationally intensive algorithm for open intelligence and spontaneous altruism. On the other, we see the Massive Vibe project, which offers the direct transmission of comprehensive intelligence through a new style of music—combining the off-beat and silence with radically innovative word combinations.

I invite you to listen in to the full dialogue here.


Open Intelligence Outshines Experience — Uniquely in Each of Us with Candice O’Denver

by Terry Patten

Join us this Sunday, August 31st, for a rich conversation with Candice O’Denver entitled “Open Intelligence Outshines Experience — Uniquely in Each of Us.”

Candice O’Denver’s “Balanced View” teachings on identity and intelligence are radical, innovative, unique and original. Even though they are resonant with the “pure consciousness” teachings of dzogchenthey are non-traditional and disarmingly direct. Her approach cuts to the root, using fresh, intuitive, universal language, like “open intelligence,” “instinctive recognition,” “outshining,” and “being of benefit.”

And the teaching, rather than being a complex, esoteric wisdom available only to initiates, is open to all and for the benefit of all. Paradoxically, though, it is always uniquely arrived at by each individual.

Balanced View draws on Candice’s lifelong familiarity with computers, the Internet, and information theory, as well as over 40 years of study of the implications of critical theory, art, and literature, and also her deep engagement in the Sanskrit and Tibetan languages, art, music, literature and cultures.

One summary of Candice’s innovation is, “In short moments of clarity, repeated many times, your natural open source intelligence becomes more and more obvious until it is predominant at all times. Open intelligence is illuminated at the crucial juncture of open intelligence and data.” The freedom offered by open intelligence is that we are no longer “victims” of data.

Complete relaxation is the core of open intelligence and spontaneously being of benefit to others through whatever is shining forth in the moment. Recently for Candice, this involved walking off stage at one of her teaching events and inviting others to come up and show whatever strengths, gifts and talents they wanted to show—so that others could shine forth with their own benefit. “We become youthful and lively,” says Candice, “because we are simply being who we actually are.”

In our conversation, we discuss many things, including the “Massive Vibe” project, in which Candice has worked with an international team of renowned vocalists and musicians who deliver the direct transmission of comprehensive open intelligence via a new style of music—combining the off-beat and silence with radically innovative word combinations to create music people can not only hear, but see.

I recently visited Candice at her home, and we recorded a remarkable conversation I’m delighted to be able to share with you this Sunday.

I hope you’ll tune in!

About Candice O’Denver:

Candice O’Denver is the founder of the Balanced View teachings, whose unique methodology begins and ends in the naturalness of our own open intelligence. It offers an education in the nature of mind, allowing people to realize their greatest potential and to be of benefit to all. This grassroots movement empowers people around the world to see their strengths and talents and contribute them for the benefit to all, enjoying increasing happiness and joy and tapping into their potential for living life in a deeply caring and beneficial way.

Candice studied in a Yale mathematics program for gifted children. At the age of 18, she attended a UCLA international program for young philosophers where she focused on the pragmatic application of philosophy to be of immediate, and permanent benefit. Bypassing undergraduate school, Candice was accepted into and completed graduate school, studying both critical theory and fine arts with a variety of professors at California College of the Arts, UC Berkeley, and Stanford.

Candice applies precise levels of organization and explanation used in computer science to arrive at specific results in the philosophy of mind, and has developed a comprehensive educational platform for studying the nature of intelligence. From her 44+ years innovating a comparative analysis of all systems designed to define human nature as well as a standardized comprehensive map for defining human nature in contemporary terms, Candice invented Balanced View, a standardized education in the nature of mind used throughout the world.


Sunday, August 31st at 10:00am Pacific; 11:00am Mountain; 12:00pm Central; 1:00pm Eastern 

*Find Your Local Time

Please Note: There will be a limited number of lines available on the live conference call, so we encourage you to listen online if possible. To make sure you can get through by phone, we encourage you to dial in early.


We look forward to your attendance!

The Beyond Awakening Team

“Back to the Future”— a Universal Spirituality

by Terry Patten

Last Sunday, I was joined by the remarkable Swiss spiritual teacher Annette Kaiser for a dialogue entitled “Going into the Wild: Is a Universal Spirituality Evolving?”

Something I deeply appreciate about Annette is that she is more dedicated to this universal service than to advancing herself as a teacher or expert. She has accomplished a great deal, having authored 12 books and owning and operating two retreat centers. She has inspired the heart intelligence and influenced the lives of hundreds of students, and also participated in many international teaching conferences, events and initiatives.

And still, she keeps reaching out, intending always to engender a higher cooperation among the diverse and separate initiatives of different spiritual schools and teachers, working tirelessly to help break through the glass ceiling that marginalizes the power of the human heart and spirit to shape human affairs.

This is what is behind her work to help develop a Universal Spirituality. In that overarching impulse, she is a dear friend and ally and heart colleague. Which is why I was so happy to invite her onto Beyond Awakening and to introduce her to people here in America where she is not yet very well known.

Annette completed her studies in economics and sociology, she married, had two children, and a successful career, eventually becoming a senior figure in the field of international development. Her special focus was women’s rights and intercultural dialogue. Along the way, she began meditating and her spiritual life deepened, and in 1982 she met her primary teacher, Irina Tweedie, the acclaimed Sufi teacher and author of Daughter of Fire and Chasm of Fire and became her student.

Even though her Sufi lineage is at the root of her experience, Annette now teaches Integral spirituality and inspires people in a non-dual, Kosmocentric understanding.  Annette says she sees the 21st Century as a call for humanity to recognize itself as undividedly One, co-creating in collective wisdom, locally-globally in the love of One Heart.

During our dialogue, I asked Annette to describe some of the main characteristics of a Universal Spirituality. How will we recognize it? Annette says Universal Spirituality is holarchic in nature. There is no single “author” designing Universal Spirituality, there is a kind of collective authorship with many people sourcing Universal Spirituality together.

Freedom is another quality of Universal Spirituality. The spiritual guidance is alwaysthat a human being becomes free. It is a spontaneous, natural way of living.

Annette says that currently she is referring to Universal Spirituality as “Back to the Future”, and the ways she explains it does seem to describe a kind of time travel! Humanity brings with it collective shadows and if we are going into a “We” field of Universal Spirituality, coming out of individual transformation, we need to do healing and forgiveness work in a collective field. Annette says that if we do that, from the present, it will change the past!

The audio to our dialogue is available now here. Listen in to hear what Annette means by understanding with the heart of the heart. And how she sees the future as a field of all possibility rooted in unlimited love.


Going into the Wild: Is a Universal Spirituality Evolving? with Annette Kaiser

by Terry Patten

On Sunday, August 10th at 10am Pacific, I’ll be joined by the remarkable Swiss spiritual teacher Annette Kaiser for a dialog entitled Going into the Wild: Is a Universal Spirituality Evolving?

In my travels, I’ve encountered two European teachers of Integral spirituality who deeply impressed me, Thomas Hübl and Annette Kaiser. Annette’s special gifts include a deep palpable transmission of heart purity and its expression in her dedication to help serve something greater than her own work — the revolution of the heart that can actually transform our world. In this I find in her a deep kindred spirit.

She is particularly devoted to what she calls trans-confessional and transcultural spirituality, which implies an open, aware state of being as the natural expression of an integral way of living. Annette sees this now opening up into a Universal Spirituality that can be the basis for the true politics of the heart: Universal Cooperation.

Although she was first asked to teach others by her Sufi heart teacher, Irina Tweedie, the renowned author of Chasm of Fire, Annette now creatively participates in many ways with different groups, centers and people in Europe and worldwide to engage and realize both Universal Spirituality & Universal Cooperation.

She says that it is significant that for the first time in history, humanity is able to look at our planet in totality. And it is also the first time that we can communicate so easily around the world through a variety of new media (7 billion cellphones in use!) Annette sees this as evidence that human beings are prepared to understand more deeply that they are not separate from each other. And she sees the possibility of the emergence of a new super-holon: One World, One Humanity, One Reality – absolute and relative. Truly “not-two”.

This means that the boundaries between different nations, geographical regions and continents are becoming more transparent and porous. Spirituality too is evolving. The first big step happened in the 70’s, when spiritual lineages and paths opened up to share their unique gifts. It was a democratization of the mystic world. The veil was lifted and for the first time in history, every human being could explore different spiritual paths, communicate, and discover together who they really are.

And there is a next step waiting: a new culture offering a new spiritual freedom, which includes all spiritual paths and transcends them at the same time. This is the culture that can help birth the next emergent world-Holon, which we can possibly call by the name, “Universal Spirituality”.

She has created what she calls the “Integral DO-path” (“DO” is the Japanese for “Tao” and Annette has for years taught “Tai Ji DO”). In the Integral DO-path, she teaches and inspires people in a non-dual, Kosmocentric way of living. It is not a private self-improvement course, but how we can co-create and manifest a more conscious, integral and harmonious world. And this will happen mostly through young people.

As most of you are aware, I’ve been in a deep engagement with Integral Soul Work recently. I continue to plumb the depths of that unique soul which is the essence of the individual. Of the traditional teachings on “soul”, Sufi sources are prominent among those I find most resonant. So I’m curious to explore with Annette where the individual, and his or her unique soul-offering, is expressed in her vision of Universal Spirituality and Universal Cooperation. I hope you’ll tune in!

About Annette Kaiser

 Annette Kaiser was born in Zürich in 1948. She is married and the mother of two adult children. After completing her studies in economics and sociology, she worked for many years in the field of development cooperation. Her special field was women`s rights and intercultural dialog. Later she trained development-experts.

In 1982 she met Mrs. Irina Tweedie and became her student for 17 years. In the late 1980`s Annette opened her Tai Ji DO School, and then trained Tai Ji teachers for over 20 years. In 1991 Mrs. Tweedie authorized her to give the first Sufi seminars. Since 1998, she has been authorized by Mrs. Tweedie to continue the Naqshbandiyya Mujaddidiyya Sufi lineage, guiding human beings on the path of love.

Since 2000, she has been teaching Integral spirituality, teaching and inspiring people in a non-dual, cosmocentric understanding. 
Annette sees the 21st Century as a call for humanity to recognize itself as undividedly One, co-creating in collective wisdom, locally-globally in the love of One Heart.


Sunday, August 10th at 10:00am Pacific; 11:00am Mountain; 12:00pm Central; 1:00pm Eastern 

*Find Your Local Time

Please Note: There will be a limited number of lines available on the live conference call, so we encourage you to listen online if possible. To make sure you can get through by phone, we encourage you to dial in early.


Join the Dialogue: About one hour into the dialogue, we’ll open up the lines and you’ll have the opportunity to interact with us directly over the phone or via instant message. Here’s what to do:

To interact live by voice, dial into the conference line number and wait until we ask for a question from someone in your region, or

Send us your question via instant message in the teleseminar window on your computer

Send us your questions and comments before or during the live dialogue by posting them on our Beyond Awakening Community Facebook page

We look forward to your attendance!

The Beyond Awakening Team