Core Process Psychotherapy is a form of Buddhist-informed psychotherapy that was developed by Maura and Franklyn Sills at the Karuna Institute in Devon, England. As a contemplative approach to psychospiritual psychotherapy, Core Process Psychotherapy explores how we are in our present experience and how this expresses our past conditioning, including our pre- and perinatal experiences. The enquiry into our inner processes is explored through a depth awareness of what is happening in the present moment. This includes an awareness of our feelings, sensations, subtle energies, mental processes and their expressions in our physical body. The goal of the work is not to change our experience, but to understand how we relate to it and how that can lead to suffering. With such awareness, a deeper wisdom emerges that naturally moves toward healing.
The fundamental concepts behind Core Process Psychotherapy are those of presence, inherent health, the holding field, the co-arising of experience, the relational field, joint practice, the subliminal field, and that awareness itself is curative.
At the very foundation of Core Process Psychotherapy is the belief that health is inherent and never lost. It is only obscured by our life experiences and past conditionings. Life is a relational experience, and many of our joys and suffering are a result of our relationships with the world. The concepts of the co-arising of experience and the relational field in Core Process Psychotherapy point to the importance of the relationship between the therapist and client, and joint practice refers to the commitment to experience by both the therapist and the client. Both therapist and client are deeply involved in enquiry. The therapist holds the client in deep listening and enquiry into the different fields of experience, including the subtle and subliminal. Presence, if held in clarity and mindfulness, becomes the container or holding field where embodied awareness is the natural result. An embodied awareness is awareness that is not only cognitive, but also experienced in the body. It is a whole, coherent experience, unfragmented and non-dualistic, and can be experienced as a kind of inner knowing. It is this knowing that is curative.