FAQs Local Groups
Frequently asked questions around the group process and framework of the Local Groups
Q: How can/should I call my group?
A: As an orientation and for the safety of the interested persons and attendees please call the group “Local Group” or “Local Group by Gopal”.
Q: Why do you emphasize so strongly that the structure has to be followed?
A: The described group process is designed such that people can regulate together and hence relax and connect, even without spiritual teacher or therapist. In fact, we can say that the structure replaces teacher and therapist and that it serves to the safety of the entire process. And this ensures that the mind/ego can’t interfere to obstruct true exchange. The structure serves as support, orientation, help and safety that we can experience together new and deeper levels of contact.
Q: What to do if the group leader does not follow the given structure?
A: Please approach first the group leader with your observation, maybe it happened by mistake and unintentionally. If he/she is changing the structure deliberately and is still offering the gathering as “Local Group” please send me an email, I will then remove his/her entry from the map. The same applies as well if someone offers a “Local Group” (with an entry on the map), but calls it differently, mixes it with other methods or presents it as his/her own product. A correct approach is, that the group leader always shares the link to the source, shares that the Local Group project has been founded by Gopal, shares Gopal’s website and distributes the Handout. This has nothing to do with copyright nor with my ego, these are basic principles which serve to transparency, safety and orientation for the attendees! The structure has been given to me exactly in this form, it is a gift from the spiritual world, and it shall be followed precisely.
Q: Is it useful to discuss topics which were touched during the actual group process afterwards?
A: Best would be actually to keep and leave in the group what has been shared and not to chat about it afterwards drinking tee. An idea would be for example to dance to music after the group process for half an hour or to sit in silence and meditate for half or one hour and then go directly home. Have the chat *before* the group process takes place.
Q: Should attendees be addressed when they lose themselves too much in stories instead of sharing their feelings and condition in the here and now?
A: It is reasonable if in such a case the group leader points to quitting the stories, this doesn’t disturb the process: “What is now? What do you feel now?”
Q: How often should the group take place, in which interval, weekly or only monthly, what is recommended?
A: I think there is no fix rule here, it depends on the attendees. I suggest to discuss this with the group.
Q: Has the 10 minutes sharing time strictly to be kept?
A: If the attendee doesn’t want to share anymore – because it can be quite uncomfortable, if the entire group’s attention is on an attendee (which is at the moment “against his feelings”) and there is no communication – it is perfectly fine to have the next attendee do the sharing. But maybe the first attendee just would like to sit in silence and enjoy the group’s attention which is perfectly fine. Best is to ask.
Q: In my home town there is already a local group, can I nevertheless open an additional one?
A: Yes, absolutely! The more, the better, there can be thousands in a town. There is no competition, only winners. The smallest group size would be 2 persons, this works as well, for example with couples ;-) You can attend also to several groups, or lead several groups – this is all no problem.
Q: I am interested in exchange, but doesn’t want to lead the group or have not yet a room. Should I have my name added to the map nevertheless?
A: Yes, definitely. With that, everyone can see that there is a person in your area who would like to create a group. With that, people in your area can start connecting. There will be someone sooner or later who wants to lead the group and there will be a suitable room, too.
Q: I am feeling empty inside, although I think the others have listened to me.
A: The feeling of emptiness always means re-experiencing early non-connectedness. I suggest to check if one of the following is true for you: the group has not really listened to me (they were for example distracted by own thoughts and processes) or I have not perceived at all if the others have listened to me, for example with disconnecting myself from them during my sharing. It happens often that we can focus on us only then when we first disconnect ourselves from others, this can be an aspect of an attachment trauma. If this is the case, you can try to perceive the other more and more during your sharing, such that both of you are allowed to be present at the same time. Emptiness points rather to disconnection (the others are gone), flooding rather to a be-too-much-with-the-others (I am gone).
Q: I have had added my name to the map, but nobody stepped forward so far…
A: This is related to not flowing energy (in YOUR system), the need is huge.
Q: Can we also do two or more sharing rounds within one gathering with little pauses in between?
A: Please *don’t* do this! Because it leads to the mind interfering, squeezing, and cheating and that not everything is being shared (“I can share this in the second round”). The totality gets lost, and this is not the meaning of this process. There is only this one moment, either one lives in it or one does not live, there is nothing to be split or postponed. If you are confronted with too many “improvement suggestions” from the attendees, please refer to my instructions to follow the structure unconditionally.
Q: Should the group be open for everybody who would like to join spontaneously or should it rather be a closed group with fix attendees?
A: There are no specifications, you can even offer both types of groups. Perhaps it will be required from the group that it is a closed group such that more trust can build up and deeper levels can be reached. The advantage of offering both types is that interested persons can come and try in the open group, and, if they want to dive deeper, switch to the closed group.
Q: What should I do if I don’t want someone not (anymore) in my group?
A: Very important: It is YOUR group ;-) From that perspective you are completely free to decide what to do, there aren’t any obligations from my side or from a legal perspective or from any other point of view to let someone attend! It should bring you and your attendees joy to grow together into awareness and consciousness. You don’t even have to justify your decision; you can for example say or write in a respectful way: “I am sorry, but for reasons I don’t want to talk about, I don’t want (anymore) that you come. Please look for other support or contact another local group.”
Q: Should the eyes be open or closed during the sharing?
A: Please keep the eyes open while sharing as well as while listening. So preferably, everybody keeps the eyes open. It is about connecting with the people in the *outside*. If someone doesn’t like to look directly into the group, he/she can for example look on the ground or out of the window.
Q: Can I offer such a group as well online, for example on Skype?
A: I don’t want this, at least not in the context of my name or the “Local Groups” project. The nervous system needs physical contact and exchange. And this project is exactly about bringing us back into contact with real humans. Such an exchange is by any means NOT meant to be offered online but in a safe space.
Q: Does it makes sense that the group leaders connect online?
A: No, this makes no sense, it even disturbs the entire process. The mind always wants to avoid real, direct encounter with complete communication. Group leaders who require or need to connect online with other group leaders, show with this action that they don’t share essential topics in their group. The topics to be shared are passed by and the energy is not available anymore to the group. At the beginning, sharing outside the group can be like a relief because the pressure can be discharged somewhere else. But with this a non-visible segregation between group leader and attendees is produced and increased with every online meeting, which hasn’t anymore anything to do with what this project is about. The goal is that exactly the opposite happens, namely, that all roles move to the background. But this can only happen if everything regarding the group is shared within the group. Again: Everything what you would like to share online and outside the group belongs in fact to the group, and this is the place where you have to share it, because transformation can only happen with that!
Q: What should I do if I feel spontaneously strong hate or strong sexual attraction towards someone in the group? Can I share this as well?
A: In principle, yes. This is exactly what it is about, namely to communicate especially the basic, intense, and biologically motivated movements which are always about safety or procreation/sex. These are the topics which are the most suppressed, denied and barely shared although they affect our core experience. Important is, if one feels comfortable with sharing this. It is not about ignoring the own limits. How it affects the other person is his/her business, you don’t have to worry nor care about this. As long as it is communicated in a neutral manner, without getting loud, telling stories etc., it leads always to more closeness and to the dissolving of the polarities.
Q: What should I do if attendees behave ruthless, don’t follow the rules or act against the agreements which puts me as a group leader under stress?
A: You as a group leader have to feel comfortable. Sure, everybody has its own issues which are getting triggered and want to be shared. But if things happen you can’t cope with and which disturb the process (for example standing up after sharing and leaving the room) you have to ask the attendee to leave and exclude him from the group. This is very important, for you! And there is really no issue with that: You can invite and exclude whoever you want, it is your group. Of course it makes sense to try to clarify things first in the dialog, or rather to make sure before you accept someone into the group that he/she has read the Handout and has watched at least the first video.
Q: What to do with someone with mental issues?
A: Don’t open the group to someone with whom you don’t feel safe and comfortable. This is not a therapeutic supply, it is a self-help group! You don’t act as a psychotherapist, but only as an organizer. Nobody can’t expect from you any capabilities in this area as you are an attendee yourself who likes to use the group for your topics. You can arrange a preliminary talk before you decide about the admission. You can also ask for a signed confirmation that the person is basically mentally healthy. And you are allowed to exclude everybody anytime and without any explanations from the group again.
Q: Do I have to use the G-symbol in any form in the context of my local group?
A: The G-symbol is only an aid to serve and facilitate networking such that we recognize each other quickly. If you don’t like the symbol, you don’t have to use it. In principle, the symbol is a condensed book.
Q: Should the group take place in neutral rooms (practice room, conference room, etc.) or can it also take place in private rooms, like living rooms?
A: Basically, I have nothing against gathering in private rooms. However, for various reasons it is much better to choose a neutral room, where there is no private daily life. If you would like to hold the group in your private rooms, please make sure, that you are able to measure the persons and that you feel safe and comfortable with them. In case of doubt, arrange a preliminary meeting outside of your home. At the end you will find out for yourself if this is fine for you or if you would prefer to offer the group in a neutral room.
Q: Are listeners allowed to react non-verbally on sharings like “How you look at me triggers … in me”, for example with a smile, to comfort the speaker or to comfort themselves?
A: Ideally, there are no interactions taking place, the attention of the group should only take place in form of attentiveness. If it happens for once that the listeners smile, this is not an issue. But be careful that nobody is doing this constantly as a way to connect. Instead of reacting with a smile etc. to avoid an uncomfortable feeling, it would be better to share this very feeling when it is one’s turn to share.
Q: How can I support my attendees to offer themselves local groups?
A: A good way to support them is to leave the leading of the group once in a while to interested attendees that they are able to gain initial experience. With that they can learn that it is possible and that it makes even fun :-)
Q: What should I do if an attendee refuses to share consciously and just want to be with the group?
A: The group exists to learn honest sharing, which means to really want to listen and to really want to share as completely as possible. If someone doesn’t like to do the one or the other, he/she must go somewhere else.
Q: How can we intensify the process?
A: As soon as you know each other a bit better and are more familiar with each other and feel more safety, you can start slowly to share more and more your feelings, wishes, and dislikes in relation to the other attendees! This will lead to a drastic intensification of the process. Furthermore and as a matter of fact, the real “work” is done by the listeners. If the listeners remain with their attention continuously on the speaker and don’t look away and don’t think of other things, you can maximize the effect. If it doesn’t work for someone to look at the speaker directly, it is good to look at least at a part of the speaker’s body, for example at the feet, the upper body. With that at least some energy can flow. Here is a hint regarding the timer: Please make sure that only the group leader is able to see the timer, otherwise opposite reactions in the nervous system will get activated, wich are not beneficial for the process.
Q: Am I allowed to use the email addresses of the group leaders which are visible on the map for broadcast emails, for example for spiritual or alternative projects?
A: NO! The contact list of the local groups must not be misused as an advertising channel (it doesn’t matter for what)! Of course, I can’t prevent this as the data is public. If someone is so needy and sends out spam emails because he/she wants something, he/she has ZERO energy flow und has therefore to cross the boundaries of others. If you receive as a group leader such a broadcast email, it is best to express your position and your feelings about this matter towards the sender.
Q: What should I do if I don’t feel comfortable in a group or don’t get along with the group leader?
A: Try first to clarify with the group leader your situation outside the group process. If this doesn’t lead to a solution (for whatever reason), leave the group and try another one – or even better: offer yourself a local group!