Five times a year, we reach the end of a term and say good-bye to a graduating class. You would think that the frequency of this rite of passage would make this commonplace, but it does not. These students come in as strangers not always sure why they are here or what the healing arts are really about. During their year with us, something very profound happens. It does not matter if you come into HAC's massage therapy training program with a high school diploma or a PhD (we have both types of students here and everything in between) - everyone leaves transformed.
It happens to everyone. While ordinary "civilians" cannot figure out why our graduates are so different; why they are so happy and so filled with purpose, those of us in this community know. It's an HAC thing. Even if we told you about it, you would not understand because you have to experience it. It is not the sort of thing that can be known by the intellect. How can we tell you what it feels like to have breath-body? We can't. How can we tell you what the being of another feels like through their bodily tissues and energy meridians? We can't - you have to learn through touch. You have to step onto the path yourself.
It never gets old. Every term, a new group comes in thinking that they are going to learn how to rub backs and an old group departs knowing how to be one with humanity and the universe. It is a beautiful thing. The noobs sit in their first class looking cautiously around the room at the people who, a year later, will be great friends. As students make their way through the program they confront what they think they are as bodies and minds. They confront their consciousness and how it directly impacts the world around them. They learn technique. they learn anatomy. They learn energy work and myofascial release. Somewhere in there they have to spend a couple of months with Tom Tessereau and no one leave's Tom's Advanced Techniques class the same. They get some sage advice in the form of Tom's mantra: "be willing to learn and be willing to change". They do. They come to know themselves as conscious beings that impact everything they touch. They learn that they can make the most important difference that one human being can make on another. They learn to shoot lightning from their hands that expels pain and anxiety from the human condition. They leave us with a purpose and knowing who they are in a very profound way.
We hate to see you go, graduates, but it is our hope that we will be seeing you soon as you join us in the greater healing community. Congratulations! Let the healing begin.
As HAC warms up for another Red Robe Ceremony, do not forget to sign the clinic table on your way to your future.
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