Joyful and healthy 2023

4 January 2023

Newsletter January 2023 – A Gift

“Here I am, send me” (Wellesley Tudor Pole, The Chalice Well Trust Silent Minute)

Wishing you all a healthy and joyful New Year 2023!

As mentioned and “beta” tested in the past few months with some of my clients, I will open my clinic in the new year to the concept of the gift economy, to begin with for returning clients only

It has become obvious to many of us in the last 2-3 years, if not much longer, that many of our institutions seem systematically unequipped for the challenges facing us today, public health and finances amongst others.

We are asked to find solutions outside the mindset that created the problems, even beyond the concept of a problem-solution timeline and causality itself.

Even though, by definition, a gift “is an item (or service) given to someone without the expectation of payment or anything in return” (Wikipedia), it is more often than not somehow expected to be directly reciprocal, and in a commercial context it is usually associated with a promotional intention. Who has not ever had the thought, this person gave me just a small token last Christmas, I’m not going to come up with an expensive present again this year? This is making perfect sense in the world of numbers, of measurability, which we seem to be so caught and invested in. Deep down in our hearts though we all understand that the world, the Cosmos, life, operates on different principles which are infinite, immeasurable. It is built on trust, on synchronicity, on purpose within community and mutual love and friendship. All that is truly important has been given to us freely; life itself, our bodies, minds, the sunshine that sustains us. Reciprocity for the immeasurable comes from a place of gratitude, of awareness, from the intuitive knowing that a gift always returns to the giver, often in mysterious ways.

Ever since I’ve been working for private clients it struck and hurt me often that money seems to be in the way of human connection, of service. Those who are most in need of care struggle often to afford the costs of private care.

The problem with offering anything “for free” is that it will not be seen as valuable. People will come with low expectations and, most importantly, a lack of commitment, when not honouring the effort and time spent on a product or service. No technology, no therapy module will work without the effort of the participant herself to heal.

Healing is not done for you, nor is it ever done, it is the dynamic flow that keeps life in balance.

Maybe the biggest threat to health, to being well, is not just found in the physical realm. More than a clean diet, exercise, rest or the avoidance of environmental toxins, what keeps us healthy, what nourishes us most, is a sense of belonging, of purpose, of relationship and interdependency.

So, more than only the desire to be of service, to return my gift and to make it available as much as possible, my strongest motivation for this initiative comes from an understanding that paying a certain price in exchange for goods or a service severs a relationship between two humans. When the exchange has taken place this relationship ends. Imagine, if you would that by giving a little bit more or a little bit less than a fixed price, even if marginal, a relationship is maintained, is kept open. This relationship is the place beyond numbers and quantity, the space where true healing and connection lies.

And thirdly, whilst there are many, much more clever brains than mine, working on concepts to create indipendant and accessible health care, still, like with so many brilliant ideas floating around for as long as I remember, the argument ever so often ends with “if only enough people would understand, join or participate”.

A new world is unveiling, a world of collaboration, not competition. We are in the process of unlearning old truths derived from a reductionist world view, we are seeing the ending of a story, or mythos, of separation and scarcity, and the beginning of an age of community and gift. “We are at the brink of the Age of Abundance” (C.E.), all that is asked from us now is daring to step forward, into it.

The practicalities, three baskets:

When booking an appointment you agree on paying into the first basket the price of my direct costs, £20/hour for rent and travel expenses, your commitment.

After your treatment you can pay into the second basket to me, your practitioner, what feels right for you, what your economic situation allows you to or what you feel the treatment was worth to you with regards to common rates.
And, additionally or alternatively, you can pay forward into the third basket a contribution to those less fortunate than you that cannot even afford the charge for my expenses. The amount in this third basket will be published on my website.
If you are not quite ready to walk that path with me, you certainly can pay me my fee of £60/hour, just as any new client.

Many of my ideas around this – and so many other subjects – are inspired by the work of philosopher, public speaker and author Charles Eisenstein. Much gratitude to him for so often finding the words that speak from the bottom of my soul. If you want to delve deeper into this and other of his topics, you can find his work on economics, politics and “the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible” on his website here, and a recent interview on the gift economy here.
Jan Erik

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