Tag Archive for: TAE course

Steps 1-11 of Thinking at the Edge

What happens in a TAE class? Initially, you will come to Thinking at the Edge (TAE) with something that you would like to explore. It might be a creative project that you have set aside, an aspect of your work or life that you would like to deepen, or maybe an impulse to do something new in life, based on your lived experience. You could work on something that stresses you, or something that delights you. During the TAE process, your idea of what you are working on will inevitably evolve. But at first, it is good to come into the course with an idea of a “project”. For this reason, I schedule a free consultation with prospective students when they first contact me about TAE.

TAE Class One:

During the first class, we will spend time creating an inner environment in which you feel safe, protected, supported, and free to be yourself. You’ll use this creative inner space as a touchstone during all that happens in TAE.
We’ll also go over the guidelines for TAE partnerships.

After a centering process, you’ll allow a felt sense to form: Thinking at the Edge starts with going to the “edge” of what you already know and paying attention to your bodily felt sense about what you want to explore.

Find the crux: Even though it may be difficult to put into words, you’ll start to write  what you do know about it. Once you start writing, more will come.
After you have written freely, you’ll boil everything down to one sentence. In this “crux” sentence, you’ll underline the key word or phrase around which everything revolves. Finally, you’ll ask your felt sense to take you to a moment in your life when you experienced something related to your felt sense of the whole. 

Notice what seems illogical or paradoxical: There might be something about your idea that seems impossible, paradoxical, impractical, crazy, etc. This can be the most valuable part, so don’t ignore it. A paradox is a creative field in which your felt sense can find its own right way. 

Class One corresponds to Steps 1 and 2 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge

TAE Class Two:

Find relevant examples in your own experience: You do have this “knowing” about what you want to explore, so there must have been times in your life when you experienced something that has to do with it. It could be an experience from childhood, adolescence, or from any time in your life. It could be something that has caused you to suffer or something that gives you great joy (or both!).  

You will explore moments of your own experience (“instances”) that somehow have to do with your felt sense, and “extract” the knowledge inherent in those experiences. 

Each instance forms a unique pattern. Each of the experiences that are relevant to your felt sense will have a slightly different meaning. The differences in each pattern give you vital information about what you know but have not been able to express. Each instance and its pattern form a facet of your felt sense, and are essential to what happens in TAE.

Class Two corresponds to Steps 6 and 7 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge

TAE Class Three:

“Crossing” patterns and instances: You sense into one pattern (meaning) through the lens of another. This “crossing” of two felt senses has the effect of deepening the felt sense and showing you something you hadn’t noticed before. After crossing, you will be able to express your ideas in more detail, or in a new way.

Class Three corresponds to Step 8 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge

TAE Class Four:

At this point you are invited to write freely about what you have discovered. You might come up with a new crux sentence. You can also draw or paint it if that is a more natural way of expressing for you (or dance it, or sing it, etc).

Class Four corresponds to Step 9 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge

TAE Class Five:

Working with words:  This is an opportunity to make sure that the words and images you are using to express the crux of your project are saying what you really want to say. You don’t want them to be taken over by “public” meanings. Working with words is often the first part of the TAE process. But I have found that it is better to wait until you have explored the inner landscape of your lived experience. Familiarity with that inner landscape allows your words come from a broader and deeper felt sense. 

Class Five corresponds to Steps 3 and 4 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge

TAE Class Six:

Here you’ll check whether you used any major public words in the last class. If so, try making fresh phrases to replace those words and ideas. Let what is new and specific in your felt sense express itself. 
As we approach the end of our classes, you’ll have a rich new vocabulary of words and images that come from Focusing with your project. From these, you will select all the words or phrases that are full of meaning for you now. You’ll group them so that they represent three different aspects of your felt sense. 

Class Six corresponds to Step 5 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge, plus preparation for Step 10.

TAE Class Seven:

From your lists of words or phrases that are especially meaningful, come up with your “terms”, three words or phrases that represent three different aspects of your felt sense.  You will see what happens when you try to define each “term” with another.  As you do this, you’ll pay close attention to what you sense with each crossing. This brings further depth, making it possible to express your ideas with more clarity and precision, the goal of what happens in TAE.

Class Seven corresponds to Step 10 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge

TAE Class Eight:

You’ll look for the inherent connections between your terms, giving you even more understanding and forward movement.

Class Eight corresponds to Step 11 of Gendlin’s process of Thinking at the Edge

Most people are not ready to commit to the final step of interlocking terms outlined in Gendlin’s Step 12 of the TAE process, so I do not require it. But if you are ready to go on to Steps 12, 13 and 14, you’ll be encouraged to do so. 

Your “talisman sentence”: At the end of the course, you will have a short sentence, image or gesture that encapsulates what you have discovered. In fact, the deep felt-sensing that happens in TAE will have already changed your way of being in the world. AND you’ll have your talisman sentence to give you strength as you meet the challenges of implementing your new ideas.

Focusing partnerships during and after the course:

My classes are designed to familiarize you with the TAE process so that you can use it on your own or with a partner. In between each TAE class, you will have Focusing partnerships with other class members. This is one of the most important parts of what happens in TAE. Many people decide that they want to continue these partnerships after the class, to further develop their ideas. 

Thinking at the Edge requires a very spacious kind of listening. Listening to each other in this way develops trust. The full development of a new idea, project, or way of life takes time. TAE partnerships provide a supportive atmosphere in which things that are completely new or not understood by society can grow and move forward. 

Contact me to find out when the next TAE courses are starting.

Deepening into Thinking at the Edge (TAE)

A year to experience the steps of Thinking at the Edge

Thinking at the Edge Steps 1-11 are covered by my introductory classes in Thinking at the Edge (TAE). My introductory classes are designed to help you become familiar with the steps, so that you can use TAE for yourself.
However, my students and I have seen that deep transformational processes start to unfold as a result of Thinking at the Edge. This year-long class allows those changes to develop more fully and be incorporated in your life, with the support of your fellow TAE-ers.
There will be 12 classes between January and December 2023. Classes are designed to deepen your understanding of TAE as you develop a project of your choice.

Format, days and time

Classes will be on the last Monday of each month from 7 to 9 p.m. US Eastern, except in June, when the class will be on June 12, due to the TIFI’s Focusing Weeklong in Dublin, and on December 18, due to the holidays. In addition, you’ll have at least two partnership sessions with the same partner for the month.


Twelve monthly classes with partnerships in between

January 30: TAE Steps 1 and 2: Getting the felt sense about your topic, writing about it and boiling it down to one sentence, even if you can’t say it completely. Allowing the felt sense to take you to one experience that has something to do with your topic. Noticing any paradoxes.
February 27: TAE Steps 6 and 7: Collecting instances and patterns (facets)
March 27: TAE Step 8: Crossing instances and patterns
April 24: TAE Step 9: Writing freely and see if your crux sentence has evolved
May 29: TAE Steps 3 and 4: Working with words
June 12: TAE Step 5: Writing sentences that express the crux in new ways
July 31: TAE Step 10, part 1: Gathering and clustering your most meaningful words and phrases.
August 28: TAE Step 10, part 2: Selecting temporary terms that reflect at least three aspects of your felt sense.
September 25: Step 10, part 3: See what happens when you define each term with the other terms (A = B = C).
October 30: TAE Step 11: Find the inherent connections between the terms of your theory 
November 27: TAE Steps 12, 13, 14: If you are ready to move on to Step 12, you’ll decide on your permanent  terms and develop your final theory. Not everyone is ready to do this, but we will get an overview of Steps 12, 13 and 14 so that you will be familiar with them. If you would like to spend more time on an earlier step, that’s fine. 
December 18:  Sharing what has happened in your year of felt-sensed exploration.

Prerequisites for TAE: A Deepening, Steps 1-14

In order to take this class, you’ll need experience with Felt Sensing and Listening in a Focusing partnership. 

Investment:

US$495 for 12 classes, payable in installments if necessary. 
Discount for my previous TAE students: 10% discount, or US$450.00

Your TAE mentor: Beatrice Blake

To sign up or find out more:

Schedule a free private consultation with me. I’ll meet with you before the classes start to help you sense into what your theme will be for the year.