Yesterday marked the 11 year anniversary of 9/11.
On that day I happened to be in Washington, just a few miles from the Pentagon, facilitating a group of US military officers, all of them surgeon commanders from military bases around the world. It’s a day that will be remembered in history for some terrible reasons but it was also a significant day for me for another reason...
It’s the day that I embraced an archetypal experience which led to Deeper Discovery, an extension of the Insights Discovery programme which launches next week.
I can recall the day’s events as if it were yesterday. As I was addressing the group of officers in the morning of that fateful day, the Adjutant interrupted the session and she was visibly upset. She said to the class “I have unusual news - an aircraft has flown into one of the twin towers”. As you can imagine the energy changed in the room immediately. Then the second aeroplane struck almost the same time as a third hit the Pentagon close by. The US was now on a war footing, and my ‘class’ were ordered to return immediately to their bases.
They left and I sat outside in the sun, listening to the pain of Washington that day as I tried to protect myself from the unfolding events inside my own little world. When I think now, I was probably in the grip of the unconscious. And it was during that afternoon, watching the smoke still rising from the Pentagon that I realised that some of the essences I’d been studying around Jung’s deeper work, which up until then had been a mystery, was in some way being revealed.
The next morning I took the group again, they had returned to the seminar, unable to get flights to their various locations. That morning I had a new friend at my side – one of my class - an amazing American that I’d met just the night before who, most unusually, played the bagpipes and just loved Scotland. His name is Casey Jones. I asked Casey to help the group heal the pain they were all under by playing Amazing Grace on the pipes to start our session. It was an ‘amazing’ reaction. Within seconds, all these professional senior officers and hugged each other, comforted by the music. Some of them wept, perhaps for the first time in their lives. I like to think that little Scotland brought just a little bit of healing to a very painful event in the US that day.
Since that time, the first time that the bagpipes played a lament in memory of those lost during 9/11, every time there is a memorial service in commemoration of the dead you will hear Amazing Grace played. It has become the iconic sound of that particular tragedy. Casey’s lament was the first time it was heard.
And for me, part of that amazement was that for the next three days I immersed myself in Jung’s deeper work and Deeper Discovery was born in embryonic form that week.
So, here we are, 11 years later and a decade of research and great effort has gone into development of Deeper Discovery, which launches next week on 18 September. I know that it has the potential to touch the lives of thousands, if not millions of people, just as Discovery has already done. But only with the gift that you will bring to it firstly, will its potential to touch the lives of others be realised.
May comfort, blessings and joy stay with all of us, as we embark on this incredible journey.