I am pleased to report that we have just completed our first ‘bespoke’ course, designed to meet the religious and / or cultural needs of a group of students. This was a small course for just two wonderful Hasidic Orthodox Jewish ladies. I ran the course Sunday – Thursday so that we were not working on the Jewish Sabbath and as they both had small children, we met in one of the ladies’ homes with an onsite creche. Apart from doing quite a lot of hands on baby massage the course ran as any other Certificate course would. I was grateful to the two people (one a practitioner and one a practitioner-to-be) who came in to receive a massage so that both students could observe the demonstrations. As a school we usually provide healthy snacks and herbal teas on courses and I was delighted to find that Pukka teas are kosher, I didn’t do quite so well on the kosher healthy snacks but did find some very nice kosher chocolate biscuits.. erring on the side of kosher rather than the healthy!
There were some interesting practical challenges, we struggled initially to find people for the student clinic as most women were already into their Sabbath preparations on Thursday, but we ended up having too many people who wanted to receive a massage and had to turn some away. I learnt a huge amount about Hasidic Orthodoxy and came away very admiring of the focus on family and not letting technology get in the way of life. I don’t think I would be ready for the challenge that it brings, not using electricity on the Sabbath and not having the internet on hand or being able to text would be tricky for me. One of the students said in her feedback that she had been praying for something that would work to release tension at its deepest level and through the course and her treatments on it she had received that release, it is very humbling to be someone’s answer to prayer, especially in that particular setting. We laughed together lots, all learnt lots and made lasting friendships – thank you Chavi and Mindy and I am so pleased that Raynor treatments from these two wonderful practitioners, are now available to the ladies of the Orthodox Hasidic community.
I look forward now to teaching in Israel in July and to seeing how our bespoke courses will go and which new rich experiences they will bring as we bring our training to the wider community.