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X-Men! Tools for Children with Autism, OCD, ADD, ADHD

Edited by Jan Silk from classes with Gary Douglas & Dr. Dain Heer.

Jan Silk. Access FacilitatorChildren who come into the world with ADD, ADHD, OCD and Autism are labeled as or referred to as disabled or having special needs. We would like to re-reference this point of view and call them not "special needs" children but "special talents" children or X-Men.

The term X-Men comes from the name given to a group of comic book superheroes. The story is that they are mutants, outsiders, with superhuman abilities and humans are intensely fearful and distrustful of them. The "normal" people want to find a "cure" to make them more human, but the X-Men are actually a superior breed and do not function the way others do.

What if these children we are calling disabled actually have greater abilities than their so-called normal counterparts? What would it be like if we saw them as the X-Men? Would another possibility open up if we were to give up functioning from the point of view that there is something wrong with them because they don't learn the way we do?

The simple reality is that they learn in a totally different manner. What would it be like if we were to find out how they learn, rather than trying to teach them using our methods?

In this article we will give you some simple, easily applicable tools that will allow for a different possibility of being for these children and their care givers. These tools come from Access Consciousness which was founded by Gary Douglas and his associate Dr Dain Heer in California. They have had some remarkable successes working with autistic or "special" children and invite you to use these tools to create ease and joy in your life.

1. Use Whole Picture Communication

One of the features of autism is whole brain function instead of a right brain/left brain function, which is why people with autism are unable to linearise their reality. They function with a whole or spherical awareness of reality so they do not understand the concept of step 1, step 2, step 3 or A-B-C; they see from A to Z and everything in between all at the same time.

Unless you provide the whole picture, they cannot understand your instructions. We see their confusion and we tend to think we have made our request too complicated for them and so we make the instructions even more linear, simple and focused when what is required is exactly the opposite.

This tool is illustrated in the following session where Dain and Gary were working with an autistic child in Houston.

Nicholas was four years old and had a 41-word vocabulary. His mother told us he couldn't learn words easily. When he came in, he was jumping. Every time he jumped, we said, "Wow that was a good jump. Want to jump some more?" And he would. Pretty soon, he said, "Jump." Why? We were acknowledging the 'activity' he was doing rather than trying to teach him the word from a linear, 'thinking' perspective.

We worked with Nicholas and his mother for a while until we got to the end of what Nicholas was willing to do, and they were getting ready to leave. Nicholas had learned a new word, he had looked us in the eyes, he had been present with us, he had communicated with us in numerous ways, and he was now ready to leave. He was standing at the door, grabbing the handle and pulling it down, but he couldn't get out. His mother kept saying, "Come over and put your shoes on, Nicholas. Come over and put your shoes on."

I said, "Give him the whole picture of him walking away from the door, coming over to you, putting his shoes on, taking your hand and walking out the door with you." She asked, "How do I do that?" I said, "Just shoot the picture at him of that whole sequence, like a frame of a movie." She did, and Nicholas instantaneously left the door, went over to her, put on his shoes, grabbed her hand and tried to go out the door. He instantaneously got the whole thing. It was done within a minute, while she had been trying for 5 minutes previously to get him to do it.

If you give children like Nicholas the whole picture of what you want them to do, they will get it and chances are, they'll co-operate and do everything you want. It can even be a picture of the entire day. If you give them the full picture of what you have planned for the day, you will probably end up getting the result you are asking for. What you can't do is linearise it. They can't function from this point of view. They don't construct things from the same solid points of view that everybody else does. For them, past, present and future, time, space, dimensions and reality exist all at once. When you communicate with them, you have to communicate the holograph of what's going to happen, not the steps. You have to give them the energy of the whole thing.

2. Ask "What are you Perceiving?" Not Feeling

Children that have conditions like ADD, ADHD, OCD and Autism are extraordinarily perceptive. They pick up the thoughts, feelings and emotions of everyone around them and believe they are having these thoughts, feeling and emotions themselves. They are intensely, psychically aware of everything that's happening around them and they cannot stop the perception. It's actually a talent and ability. If we recognize the talent and ability they have, we can facilitate them in the process of learning how to live with it.

Some people get all this information for as much as a 1,000 miles or more in all directions and they don't have the ability to discriminate between what is theirs and what is not. What you have to do is bring them to the awareness that there is a difference between perceiving something and having that something as theirs. A perception is an awareness, and it doesn't require that you do anything with it. If you believe that you are having that (thought, feeling, emotion, picture) you generally believe you have to understand it or do something with it.

Here Gary illustrates this tool by describing actual sessions where he has used it:

I ask "Are you perceiving this, or are you having this?"
They will usually ask, "What's the difference?"
I explain, "Perceiving means that you are aware of it. Having means that it is in your body,"
They will almost always say; "Oh! I am perceiving it!"
Then I ask, "Will you recognize that all of the thoughts, feelings and emotions that you are getting are not actually yours? You are perceiving them."
They say, "Wow!"
It's a new concept. They've never heard anything like it. People have always asked them questions like, "What is causing your feelings?" or "Why do you feel that way?" The truth is that nothing is causing these feelings and thoughts. They belong to other people! More than anything else, simply asking whether they are perceiving these things or having them sets them free.

One of the biggest difficulties for people with Autism is that they have no discriminating factor; they don't have a way of turning things down. Everything is at high volume; all the knobs are turned up so for them it's like they're receiving 300 channels of television at the same time. Discrimination between one channel and another doesn't exist. They receive everything all at once and they don't have a reference point for what to do with it.

We try to help them by linearising things; we try to teach them to discriminate the channels, but this is not a characteristic or a capacity they truly have. We have to give them tools they can actually use. One of those tools is the question, "Are you perceiving this (thought, emotion, feeling) or are you having it?"

These children function much faster; they move much faster, they are far more present and aware than we give them credit for. Words are usually too slow and if you ask them to focus on one thing, it will often make them crazy. Start giving them a whole picture of what you're asking them to do and provide multiple stimuli at the same time. If you allow a child to read or draw while watching TV and listening to music all at the same time; the crazy behaviour will often go away. Suddenly there's enough to keep them out of being stimulated by all the stuff around them and they can function.

Many high-functioning people with Autism have panic attacks or anxiety attacks that come out of nowhere. The question, "Are you perceiving this (thought, emotion, feeling) or are you having it?" will help them, because the anxiety attacks are not theirs. You can do it with a mental picture or you can say; "This is not yours!" to them as well. They can pick up what you say, and they also pick up your thoughts. The difficulty is that if you project at them that there's something wrong with them, they'll become worse. They pick up on the depression, the manic depression and the schizophrenic behavior that is all around them.

3. Being in Allowance

What is being in allowance? Being in allowance is being in a place of no judgment. There is total allowance of all things. When you are in allowance, you are a rock in the stream. Thoughts, ideas, beliefs, attitudes and emotions come at you, and they go around you and you are still the rock in the stream. Everything is an interesting point of view. When you are in allowance, you create a sense of larger space; a feeling of peace and calm for everyone around you. It's so rare for these children to be with someone who is in allowance of who they are that they will want you to stay with them all the time. They like having you around because you don't look at them with judgment. All kinds of things become possible from this space and we would like you to recognize that this is the gift of being in allowance.

Acceptance is different from allowance. If you are in acceptance, when thoughts, ideas, beliefs and attitudes come at you and you are in the stream, you get washed away. In acceptance; you either align and agree, which is the positive polarity, or you resist and react, which is the negative polarity. Either way, you become part of the stream and you get washed away.

If you are in allowance of what is being said, you can say, "Well, that's an interesting point of view. I wonder if there's any truth in that?" You go into a question instead of a reaction. When you go into resistance and reaction or alignment and agreement with points of view, you create limitation and change is no longer possible.

Gary gives this example of how this shows up everyday life:

You and your friend are walking down the street and he says to you, "I'm broke." What do you do?
"Oh, you poor thing!" is alignment and agreement.
"You are!" is resistance and reaction - you know he's going to hit you up for a loan.
Interesting point of view is, "Really?"
Does someone irritate you? He or she is not the problem. You are. As long as you have any irritation, you've got a problem. It's not about the way others respond to you. It's about your being in allowance of them. You have to be in allowance of where the other person sits in order for them to be able to change.

What would it be like if parents and care givers were able to be in total allowance with all the "strange" behavior that accompanies OCD, ADD, ADHD and Autism? What change could occur if we were willing to ask "What else is possible?"

You don't have to align and agree and love them, nor do you have to resist and react and hate them. You simply allow and honor and respect their point of view without buying into it. Being in allowance of somebody doesn't mean you have to be a doormat. You just have to be what is. When you're in allowance, everything becomes an interesting point of view. You do not accept it; you do not resist it. It just is. Life gets easier and easier with this tool.

This is a demonstration of allowance in action by Jill McCormick who works with "special needs" children in Florida, USA:

She told us that she was working with a student with ADHD and the parents and teachers were trying to control his hyper-ness. Jill was doing the same thing until she realized it wasn't working and she shifted into being in allowance of where he was. She just observed him and didn't try to make him do things. He shifted hugely. When he was around her, he no longer jumped on the tables and tried to create distractions. How does it get any better than this?

When you tell kids, "You are wrong for doing this," they have to go on doing it. They have to prove that they are right by continuing to do it. But when you allow them to be who they are and see what they are providing, you open the door for them to actually give you the gift that they are. You have to learn to function from allowance, because allowance itself is the greatest gift.

4. Give up asking, "How do we get our child to be Normal?"

When talking to parents who have children with Autism, the parents will often acknowledge the talents and abilities their kids have, and then ask, "Okay, so how do we get him to be normal?" or "How do we get her to fit in?" They want their children to fit into the normal reality.

Dain says that would be like Einstein's Mom saying, "Come on, Albert, just forget this Theory of Relativity you are working on. Be a little more normal. Just do regular math. Don't do that weird stuff." It's as if parents and teachers are trying to take the Einsteins of the world and turn them into regular mathematicians or bean counters. It is not possible. They don't work that way. These children function from energy, not from solidity.

Dain, Jill and Gary worked with an autistic little boy in Australia. He could take a piece of clay and turn it into a cool reptile sculpture in 10 seconds flat. He had the potential to become an extraordinary artist, but his artistic capacity will probably not be developed because at his school, they are trying to get him to focus and stick to a task. This does not value what's different about him. A huge part of the school system is afraid of things that are different. What would it take for that to change?

Summary

Children with these "labels" of OCD, ADD, ADHD and Autism function from the infinite universe and we can't get to where their universe is if we look for it in the finite construct of this reality. This has to do with our unwillingness to embrace transformation and change and to live in the truth of the infinite universe. What if you had a more infinite possibility? What if life in all its aspects were more expansive than anything you could ever imagine?

Most people who do Access work find that it makes their world a bigger place. It gives them information and more awareness about how they can help others and make their life better and easier. Life becomes more fun. What if the small improvements people experience after doing a little bit of Access were not even the tip of the iceberg, but only a snowflake on the iceberg? What we see all around us is the finite universe where everything functions from a linear construct but the truth is; there is a whole other universe, an infinite universe, available if we ask questions and look from a different point of view.

We want you to see where these kids function from, because if you can see where they function from, it may be easier for you to be around them. You will be able to see where to go with them. You will be able to help them. These children experience unnecessary pain and suffering because we keep trying to make them finite rather than looking at their true capacities. What would it take for a different possibility to be available for them and for us?


This list of tools is only a small sample of what is possible by using the techniques and tools of Access Consciousness. If you have enjoyed some success with these tools and would like to know more, contact www.accessconsciousness.com for more information

Consciousness includes everything & judges nothing
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