Roger Tempest’s family have lived in Broughton Hall in Skipton, Yorkshire since 1097 and each century has brought its own challenges. When Roger went on the Hoffman Process, he finally came to terms with his father’s death and integrated years of conditioning to find his own inner sanctuary. Now he wants to offer that place of peace and safety in the outer world at Broughton Hall, as part of a vision called Avalon.
I was once at a celebratory meal in Oman where a poet gave a reading in front of the 50 people present. He kept repeating a line in Arabic which described us as ‘prisoners’ of ourselves, of our religion, of our lives and of the circumstances around us. It was so powerful that it produced a deep silence in the room. As he said, we were all guilty of creating prisons within ourselves.
This idea really resonated with me, as my own awakening began quite late in life. Along the way I’d had the good fortune to experience some remarkable people and places including Mother Meera, John of God in Brazil, Eckhart Tolle at the Omega Institute, Amma in India, and Mother Teresa’s nuns in service for the homeless.
However, as I eventually discovered on the Hoffman Process, the addition of formal tools and frameworks can allow you to take a giant leap along the path of self-development. Whether they’re aimed at integrating traumas, learning the value of ceremony, acknowledging fully what we experienced as a child or in our parenting or at learning how to live in a more loving and caring way – the Process structures and techniques proved incredibly valuable.
The Tipping Point
A friend who experienced transformative change through the Process kept suggesting that I put the time aside to do it. This went on for nearly 10 years while work continued to distract me. The tipping point came when my partner encouraged me to do it.
Finding the time and opportunity for Hoffman led me in the right direction and helped me overcome a range of issues which began to liberate me, setting me on a course for life which is bringing greater rewards. And once started on this journey of discovery there was no going back without living an unsatisfactory and half-lived life. On my quest to release myself from the shackles of the past, inappropriate social conditioning and beyond, Hoffman was a seminal moment which created some key breakthroughs.
One of these was finally coming to reasonable terms with my father’s life and his death in 2017 at the age of 93. Already the product of a peculiar upbringing, this was a man who was shot in the head in 1944 and who had traumatic World War two experiences of concentration camps. I was finally able to empathise with how these events had shaped him and why he was who he was – an understanding I had been searching for much of my life.
The course led me to explore new corners of life and the physical world. It opened up my heart and mind to a whole range of new experiences and gave me a framework for life which continues to serve me well. Hoffman made me realise that self-care and personal development in fact benefits everyone in my life, whether family or friends or the community I live in.
Hoffman also taught me that creating transformative experiences needs the right environment and tools delivered in an exceptionally well thought-out manner for the full potential of healing and change to occur – and personal responsibility is at the heart of it.
I’m deeply grateful for the remarkable dedication of the course leaders to lead us through the troubled waters of life in a safe and trustworthy place as well as the chance to meet so many fellow travellers, with whom I’ve formed deep bonds.
The legacy it has left with me is to make me very aware of the work I need to do on myself whether it involves my relationships, my work, my health, self-care or overall life vision.
From the Inside to the Outside
It’s the shifts that we make on the inside that lead to external change. When we’re no longer afraid to look within we can look without much more confidently and courageously. Our fears so often hide our greatest gifts which, once uncovered, we can then use in service to the wider community – as Saint Francis says; ‘in giving, we receive’.
When I recently asked one of Mother Theresa’s nuns for a tip in life, she reminded me of the prayer by Hans Urs: ‘What you are is God’s gift to you, and what you become is your gift to God.‘ It beautifully sums up the journey we have to go on, whether you believe in God, a creator or the force of life itself.
The Process gave me a beautiful sense of inner sanctuary – one of the many Hoffman tools that I took away with me – and now my partner and I aim to create that same environment in a centre called Avalon; a safe haven in which people can explore and transform their own lives.
Avalon nestles in the Yorkshire countryside offering nurture, nourishment and support for the mind body and spirit. We hope to become the leading centre in the UK for this type of work. That means, with amazing synchronicity, that we’re very honoured to host the Hoffman Process in this picturesque and unique location.
My advice if you’re unsure whether or not to do the Process? Just go for it. I can’t understand how anybody could not benefit from it, however difficult parts of it are – it is the most wonderful present you can give yourself and it benefits so many others.
The Process, in one way or another, is a soul journey. On reflection, it seems so obvious that it’s up to us to awaken and leave the prison that the Omani poet so astutely referred to that day.
We’re very much looking forward to running our first Hoffman graduate Winter Retreat at Broughton Hall from 15-19 December 2018. We are also going to be offering the Hoffman Process at Broughton Hall in March 2019. Full details will be announced in our monthly Hoffman newsletters – if you don’t already receive them and would like to subscribe, click here.