‘Felt Sense – a beautiful yet misleading term’
by Donata Schoeller
1st EUROPEAN FOCUSING CONFERENCE
MAY 10-14, 2018
Beginners in Focusing worry if what they feel is a “Felt Sense“. Advanced Focusers debate what a “Felt Sense” is. If people who don’t do Focusing are philosophers, they react with skepticism. Why should there be an internal sense holding any wisdom? If the “Felt Sense“ suggests there would be a private “it,“ which Focusers refer to, the term is misleading. The practice seems luxuriously irrelevant, if all we do is to focus on some internal feeling-tones. Based on A Process Model, my paper lays out an understanding of “Felt Sense“ in terms of a practice regenerating embodied environments. “Direct Reference” and “Felt Sense” are two sides of the same coin, so to say. The practice of “Direct Reference” and what we call “Felt Sense” name a co-generative, interdependent process – creating and re-creating interactional environments, differentiating new objects and matters which are at stake. #
There is no way to explain how the subtle process of “Felt Sensing” makes for such unexpected situational changes, if one does not face the challenge to think body-environment together, in terms of Gendlin’s main principles of “interaction-first“. The emphasis on the unpredictably creative process happening while we formulate into the implying of what we think, feel and experience – this was one of my core experiences when speaking and thinking together with Gendlin. There was no “ready“ it there, ever – what was implied needed the process of carrying forward in order to make the difference it made.