Saniel Bonder & Linda Groves-Bonder

Ten Reasons Why Waking Down Works So Well

for people who want to Awaken whole-bodily
and live an authentic conscious life

  1. Waking Down “greenlights” every part of who you have been, are, and are becoming. The whole spirit of the Waking Down work continually says “YES!” to your whole being. It welcomes you to be here, become whole, and fulfill your optimal potential. No part of you is fundamentally wrong or bad. There is no call to fundamentally reject, resist, fear or despise even your most cut-off parts or anti-social or self-destructive tendencies.

    And, your most sublime potential self-awareness and expression is in many ways more shy, vulnerable, and tender than even those anti-social, cut-off qualities of self. Here all of your parts get greenlighted. Paradoxically, that deep acceptance leads not only to recognition and release, but also, over time, to conscious reconfiguration and regeneration.

  2. Waking Down is democratic, warmly humane, pragmatic, experiential, and “sticky.” There is no pecking order in terms of personal worthiness or having your voice heard. Disrespect of others is not welcome but those who might display it get treated warmly and welcomed in humane ways to recognize and correct their course. Teachers and other leaders do not deliberately embarrass anyone. They don’t preach at or disparage people and they are accountable for their speech and actions as is everyone else. They know how to apologize and they don’t put themselves on pedestals or allow others to do that to them. When any of us make mistakes, we work things out with one another. We really do love each other a lot. And we show it.

    Because each one’s uniqueness is so highly valued, everyone’s approach to finding their own distinctive path is cherished. And the work is quite pragmatic. It’s both experiential and experimental. Because they are not being required to conform themselves to outward ideals, people find that the insights, transformations, and awakenings they undergo are “sticky.” They tend to last.

  3. “I came into WDM in August 2008 and had my 2nd birth awakening in June 2009. Because of this work, I have been able to awaken and live in this body-mind as the Divine Source I had sought for 30 years. In the past three years, Being has taken me on an incredible journey that has resulted in Life living me, and it is from this place of receptivity to Life that conscious action can now occur through me. It's so amazing to see what unfolds in me every day as I deepen in my realization. There's never a dull moment!

    “I've been fortunate to spend the last 18 months in service to others here in the Northeast by organizing WDM events, helping to expand the work, and holding the growing community in this region. I've completed all three advanced courses for awakened practitioners, and am now applying to become a WDM Mentor. My Heart's on fire for this work and am committed to helping others awaken and enter this incredible life transformation.”

    — Gena Netten
        former Brand & Marketing Manager, Educational Testing Service

  4. Waking Down is ego-friendly and ego-transcending. Yes, that’s right: both, or “both/and.” Your fundamental, individual sense of “I” or “me” gets included in this approach. You don’t have to fight to overcome it. It doesn’t get bashed or humiliated or subjected to “crazy wisdom” by teachers who assume it’s the enemy of your growth and transformation. You don’t have to “get over your (ego’s) story.” Instead, we welcome your story and all your egoic “stuff.”

    You may have been fighting a war against obvious limits of your seemingly false self in order to attain the limitlessness of a true Self beyond ego. As that war comes to an end, you in effect sign a peace treaty with all your parts in your heart, soul, and whole body. This includes even your most cut-off shadow material, your “broken zones” or disowned voices of self. The energy, attention, and awareness that get liberated for your further integration and your whole-being Awakeness – with your ego intact but, gratefully, no longer separate from your impersonal, transcendent yet all-inclusive essence – will be a wonderful discovery.

  5. “I entered the Waking Down work around the fall of 2009, and had my 2nd birth confirmation in January of 2011.

    “My entry was a bit like a wolf circling a campfire: cautious, skittish, but drawn by the warmth. I circled faster and faster as I began to see the results, even while I couldn't clearly articulate the methodology or mechanisms of these changes.

    “My normally intellectual mind was fascinated to watch itself being outstripped by a something that was undeniable: a decrease in a lifelong background anxiety, a surfacing and resolving of an existential level of grief (what I came to learn Waking Down termed the 'core wound'), and finally a recognition, almost in hindsight, that the idea of myself as fundamentally separated from Oneness/Spirit had become, in my own heart, ridiculous.

    “So as this realization, which is stable and always implicit if not blazing, spreads and reaches out, I watch old neurotic patterns become absorbed in love and awareness, not aggressively, as if conquered, but gently and with a surrounding, appreciative awe.”

    — Marty C.

  6. Waking Down is generated from the very root-source of your life and awareness. In this work, you soon recognize that the state-of-the-art evolutionary force of transformation you’re plugged into is self-activating from your own source. The living Spirit-fire of Being is like a pilot light at the heart-core of your bodily and spiritual existence. It’s as if the gas mysteriously gets turned up at that pilot light. The “Sun” of awareness at your core starts rising, becoming increasingly self-aware.

    The juice of the process comes from beyond your thinking mind or your will to practice effectively. It feels greater than you and yet deeply intimate to you. You then cooperate with this core-generated power that’s changing you from within. It’s much more like flowing downstream in a river than like a climber heroically ascending the vertical face of a high mountain peak.

  7. Waking Down is transmission-activated. Most spiritual practices rely heavily on your capacity to practice primarily by dint of intention and will – even if the goal is surrender to some form of grace. This work relies most in the early phases on your receiving and metabolizing the transmission of the Awakened condition, principally from awakened Waking Down teachers.

    Their very presence tends to “turn up the gas at the pilot light” in your own essential core. You may also find this activating transmission in various teachers’ writings, audio recordings, and videos. More and more, it’s coming alive in and among community members, especially when they gather, even virtually, to explore and celebrate this Way of living.

  8. Waking Down is NOT cookie-cutter, regimented, hierarchical, or dissociative. Linda likes to say, “This is not a cookie-cutter process!” It’s not one-size-fits-all, so that everyone does the same practices. It’s uniquely tailored to each individual. The teachers are happy to advise but they will not tell you what to do. There are no strict regimens, dress codes, dietary restrictions, required disciplines, required ways of speaking and acting, and so on.

    While the functional advancement of teachers and others is recognized and put to use, there is no assumption of anyone’s existential, hierarchical superiority. Dissociation and alienation are generally viewed as symptoms of spiritual bypassing. But people are not made wrong for manifesting such symptoms. They’re greenlighted, held, supported, and helped to feel deeper and open into real mutual respect.

  9. “I entered Waking Down in 2010, after having been a very dedicated Buddhist meditator. Although my meditation history had provided many lasting benefits, it never addressed the fundamental existential concern that brought me to spiritual practice in the first place.

    “Within a few short months of working with my WDM teacher, profound shifts in consciousness began to occur, including stable access to witnessing consciousness. After only nine months, I had landed stably in an embodied, unconditionally confident, non-dual realization, which has since continued to prove itself to be the real spiritual McCoy. This realization answered the existential call I was making, fundamental confusion and pain have been replaced by fundamental clarity and well-being.

    “This path works so well because it acknowledges and calls forth the whole person: transcendent, immanent, and personal. And, it honors the essential and often tense paradoxes of life more completely than any other transformative work I've come across. This is not to say that other transformative works don't have their valuable emphases and specialties which are not as present in Waking Down, but it is to say that the broad outlines of the best of all dimensions of both old-world and the new emerging spiritualities are included in WDM, to the great benefit of its practitioners.”

    — Zachary Schlosser
        B.A. Religious Studies, Brown University; mentor, A Deep Life Mentoring

  10. Waking Down is Matter-positive, body-positive, and Earthly life-positive as well as Spirit-positive. We see Matter as being equally real, divine, and important as Spirit. Waking “Down” involves coming into a fusion of Spirit and Matter, and of instinct and intelligence. It also involves a quality of embodiment that, so many of us have discovered, you have to experience to really appreciate. It’s just so deep and unexpected, it can’t really be described.

    For thousands of years much advanced spirituality has been built upon and perpetuates a Spirit/Matter split or chasm in human consciousness and character. Even today, if you listen closely to their teachings, many of the most awakened and life-positive spiritual leaders are still trying to negotiate an uneasy truce with Matter from the Spirit side of that split. Waking Down is radically Matter-positive. It greenlights our animal nature as much as our spiritual refinement. It’s body-positive and profoundly positive about Earth, the biosphere, and our earthly lives.

  11. Waking Down is a welcoming melting pot from the Global Living Lineage of spirituality – where something new is always cooking! People have come into Waking Down, and continue to, from many different schools, traditions, lineages and teachings. Practitioners are encouraged to love and respect the real gifts they’ve received in the past – and those from whom they have received them. We honor the traditions and teachers that have preceded us and made our Way possible. We also honor that we are the beneficiaries of sacrifices that millions of dedicated people worldwide have made for the sake of wisdom and the betterment of all.

    Still, we are not constrained by being beholden to any tradition other than that of truth, love, and service to all. Our Way diverges from its predecessors in ways we’re pointing to here. As one great scientist said of his own innovations several hundred years ago, if we see far, it’s because we’re standing on the shoulders of giants. As inheritors of the Global Living Lineage, our emergent tradition is also a kind of melting pot. And we feel we honor our predecessors best by letting whatever we are, transform or cook into whatever it can best become.

  12. “I was introduced to Waking Down in January of 2009. Life was challenging: I was in the midst of a horrible, ugly divorce, I was in a deeply loving yet still difficult relationship, I didn't have a home -- I was living out of a suitcase between two continents, and I had somehow suddenly become clear about the extensive (suppressed) trauma and abuse in my life and was dealing with the fallout of that realization.

    “I had my second birth one year later, in January of 2010. Life has now stabilized on the outside (work, home, relationships with family and friends) and on the inside. Wow! Most of the time now I feel simple contentment. Challenges, struggles still happen, -- life happens -- and yet there is a profound sense of peace underlying each moment. Often I have a deep, blissful connection to the Divine, sensing it arising as all creation, moment to moment.

    “As the contractions continue to drop away, I have uncovered many new and wonderful things about myself, including realizing my devotional nature, a new perspective through which I relax into and enjoy life more fully. Life is utterly rich and delicious now, in all its twists and turns, flavors and colors. I awaken every day with a thank you on my lips, and deep gratitude for the love, joy, and peace in which I live.”

    — Liz Kennedy

  13. Waking Down is you-centric and us-centric, not tradition-centric, doctrine-centric, or teacher-centric. Part of the newness of the tradition we are establishing is a different centeredness. So many of the old ways teach people to cherish elements of tradition, doctrines, shrines, special objects and artifacts, or living and dead teachers much more than themselves and one another.

    Waking Down is aspirant-centric – it invites you to hold yourself as the most precious dimension of the whole Way, for you. And it invites you also to hold as precious the “We” space you have with all of us as your fellow practitioners, teachers, and leaders. It doesn’t make a fetish of any teacher, any sacred object or text, any special place or teaching, but only values all of these as servants of the real human beings who together comprise this wonderful emerging community.

  14. Waking Down is an unstoppable, bio-spiritually natural evolutionary event. Once the Sun in your heart is activated, not even your most broken zones can prevent it from rising. They cannot prevent your full, bio-spiritual, awakened wholeness and unique purpose from coming front and center in your life.

    You may have thought or been trained to think of yourself as a small, somewhat miserable, spiritually impoverished ego struggling to climb the great Mountain to spiritual awakening and freedom. In Waking Down, you begin to realize that this is a terribly inaccurate view. The process itself changes your mind – about you and about everyone. You realize that you are part of a great Event in nature – that the Sun in your heart-core is truly rising and nothing can stop it – that you are that Sun, you are that Event – and that we are all here for a grand, cooperative evolutionary transformation in service to all Life.

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