Presence Process


For the past six months I have been moving with a process called The Presence Process by Michael Brown. It’s a 10 week program that is simple, and accessed by simply buying a book. Yes… that’s it! No courses, workshops or retreats to attend. No huge dent in your bank balance. Just a $20 book. I love the feeling of integrity and self-empowerment of this.

The Presence Process was recommended to me by a friend late last year. I bought the book, read it, and started the first 10 week cycle. It is recommended to do it thrice.

What began as a simple application of breath, meditation, mindfulness, and a few tools to process the uncomfortable arisings, evolved into a deep delve into physical, mental and emotional territory long forgotten and hidden from current view.

I don’t feel to share the details, as I believe everyone’s journey is unique and specific to their own life’s experience, however, I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in awareness, and the integration of patterns and imprints we all tend to accumulate from life’s journey. And before you dismiss it and say “Oh I’ve done all that!” (which is what I thought too), check in and see if there isn’t a deeper pull to take a look. You may be surprised, as I was, to find what’s been hidden away all this time while you’ve diligently been sorting out ‘the me’ on this ‘spiritual’ journey.

If you’d like to know more, I suggest taking a look at Michael’s website here, and/or purchasing the book. I alway use the Book Depository as they offer free delivery. Michael suggests reading the book, even if you don’t do the process, as it provides a wonderful enquiry for taking a good look at some patterns that may still be ‘running’ the show.



about today

Melinda Blair Paterson

There’s nothing unusual about today,
yes I have a head cold
and the farmer’s market
like any other Friday.

There’s nothing unusual in this day,
watched a movie
and texts of care from friends
like every other day.

So why am I suddenly on my knees,
howling like a child
hands beating chest
begging to be broken?

Why are the tears followed by rage,
primal sounds
flashes of faces
crying to be taken?

passes through
yet there is no need

The tears desist
the nose blows
the body rises
from the floor.

You see… there’s nothing unusual about today.

nothing different


Walking across the grass

the moment of knowing arrives

as natural as taking the step.

There is no difference

between being solo or with other,

it’s all the same.

And the delight this knowing brings

follows effortlessly as silent joy

smiling within.



Image by Melinda Blair Paterson
verandah morning contemplation – image by MelindaBlairPaterson (Instagram)


Do you ever have those moments in life when you feel ‘done’? I don’t mean from an exhausted place but rather an awareness of whatever has been happening in your life, however you’ve been playing the game… it’s over. You just can’t do it any longer. You can feel the turning of the tide and a quiet knowing appears that informs you… life with this person, place or event won’t look or interact the same from now on.

I’ve experienced this recently with some friends. Friends that I’ve had a long and close relationship with for years, and then one day I hang up the phone, or walk away from the connection and it’s there…. that feeling… the knowing. I call it ‘done’.

Interestingly it doesn’t always mean the relationship is ended.

Yes in the past I would say that would be true, but now it appears as a different expression. I notice that there may be a gap, a period of time, some space is created between the ‘done’ and next moment of meeting. For all intents and purposes it may look much like the past, yet I am acutely aware it feels different. The energy, patterns of interaction, and conversation is spacious, the triggers of past are gone… vamoose… as if they never existed, and there is little if any feeling of separation. Instead a love is present. A rested interest in the other and no need for anything here.

I have absolutely no idea how the ‘done’ moment is crafted and created. I don’t feel I have any say. I’m just aware when it arrives and I’ve learnt to stay curious and open to what may appear next.  Mx

anxiety aware where?

The surfer knows, as the wave crests and collapses into itself,
he must surrender, 
to be delivered to the surface for the next breath of life.

Bondi Sunrise by Melinda Blair Paterson

Anxiety, when it comes, wraps itself around like an incolsolable child clinging to its parent… suffocating, demanding and exhausting.

Totally aware when it is happening and yet there seems no control or power as to when it arrives, how long it stays, and when its departure is due. I’ve learnt over the years to deny it, speak of it.. and not, nuture it, watch it, breath through it, sit with it, and these days… allow it.

And please don’t think the ‘allowing’ makes it any easier, because it doesn’t. It just seems to create space for gaps, a breath of Awareness, whilst anxiety is having its play with a ‘me’.

Sometimes the excruciating pain of the mental turmoil is all that is known in the moment, as one dark or irrational thought/image after another is ridden like a surfer on a wave that seems sure to deliver his end. The surfer knows as the wave crests and collapses into itself, he must surrender, to be delivered to the surface for the next breath of life.

And so the surrender, the allowing of its presence, and the uncomfortable experience is accepted and played out. The door is opened, the visitor is welcomed, and never asked to leave.

I can tell you one thing. When so called ‘anxiety’ is having its play and the so called ‘mental pain’ is at its worst and being fully experienced, there is no ‘me’. There is only the experience. There is only Awareness.


Our Self, the light of pure Knowing, is completely empty and, at the same time, the substance out of which the fullness of all experience is made. Rupert Spira

The sound of water falling

image by melinda blair paterson

I came up from the wave and heard the water falling from my body. It was as if I had never heard this sound before. I mean… I swim in the ocean all year round and delight in diving under the waves to feel the cold water over my head, only to resurface amongst the bubbles of the backwash squealing in childish joy.  I tell myself I am swimming in champagne!

Then the mind steps in… I must know this sound of water falling from my body!… yet it’s like I’ve never heard it before. The sound was so intense, magnified, and new. Then there was a noticing that every sound was somehow magnified and new. The waves, the birds, the wind, and the movement of my body was all in perfect chorus. I laughed in abandon … a fleeting moment of experience… and the mind steps in… don’t get attached Melinda!.

I had been aware for a few days prior of a building sense of quiet or calm. I even spent some time with Kathy and watched how my mind spun out afterwards exhausting me… and yet something else…  deeper, quiet, still was present. I wrote to Kathy asking if I could see her again and shared my recent experience in the ocean. I assured her I wasn’t chasing anything but was feeling drawn to spend more time together. She replied:

You are just fine as it is. The noticing that you need to rest is just
that the mind hasn’t been met with engaging. It doesn’t know what to
do with it.

Stay with the tears and softness.

Wanting to see me again is also chasing an experience. This has
nothing to do with a ‘me’. Watch the mind spin another story how
something other than ‘now’ will be of benefit to a ‘Melinda’.

Don’t do anything and sit with every feeling with disinterest. Nothing
more than that.

You are not experiencing more levels of presence. The ‘you’ thought is
not there when what you really are is Present.

Presence never comes and goes.



Thanks Kathy… it’s always loving to hear truth. Mx



image: ‘Kathy’ by melinda blair paterson

Hi All… It’s been a few weeks since I last posted. I seem to have been in a space of ‘not sure what to say!‘ I’ve wanted to talk about my friend, Kathy, but am not sure where to start or what to say or not say. I certainly do not wish to offend Kathy, or say anything that is inappropriate, afterall she is a very dear friend and quite a private person. You may have read in prior posts my referring to ‘my awake friend’. Well it seems time to come clean, cause talking about or writing the words ‘my awake friend’ just feels like a bit of a wank really.

Kathy is someone that came into my life a few years ago. We regularly bumped into each other at spritual gatherings and on the streets of Byron Bay when she was visiting. We would go and have a cuppa together and I would listen as she began telling me about consciousness… or awareness… or whatever you want to call it. I didn’t even know the term ‘non duality’ back then.  I really tried to understand what she was talking about, but I was very much into the Law of Attraction teachings at the time and living the dream! Needless to say, I was totally into controlling the mind and not really able to grasp what on earth she was talking about as it was definitely not from the mind!

I would go away feeling exhausted, ‘brain fry’, as I call it, and yet always came back for more. These spontaneous meetings happened on and off over a couple of years until Kathy and her partner came to live in Byron Bay…. that’s when things really started to hot up for me regarding ‘non duality’. It was like I had been wandering in the desert of new ageism and spirituality for years, only to finally find a river from which I could drink, and drink I did. I couldn’t get enough at first. I just wanted to hang out with Kathy every opportunity I could, ask questions… and I had lots of questions;  gain glimpses (or so it seemed), and  slowly, ever so slowly, begin to notice changes within myself.

It’s been twelve months now and I’ve loved being around Kathy… and I’ve hated it. I’ve seen myself drink from the river until I could take no more only to scream within ‘No, I don’t want to hear another word!’ Kathy knows this of course. She senses my resistence every time, and every time it is excruciating… the resistence I mean… and then it passes.

After awhile new friends met Kathy and my one-on-ones became groups of people all hungry for the same. All hungry to know the truth and wake up. So I learnt to let go of my personal time with Kathy and watched as others drank in the energy, ask the questions and made the quiet shifts within.

I had the priviledge of spending a day with Kathy last week. I offered to help her move house. It was like our early days together.  Pretty much from the moment I walked in the door it was on… we were talking awareness… well let me clarify… Kathy was talking from awareness… I was listening and asking my usual mindy questions… but it was a great day. We’d move a few boxes, take a load to the next house, sit down for a cuppa, talk for an hour or so and then do another load, then it was time to eat… more talk, then another load etc. The day just effortless passed and the moving somehow happened within it. We even had time to explore the property, check out the new gardens, vegie patch and local creek. It was amazing. I felt so alive the whole time… and in so much love. You see that’s Kathy… the presence of Love.

My perception and experience of Kathy is she is a very ordinary person. She has no need to teach and yet when we get together I am so grateful that she spontaneously lets it flow from her like a river. It’s effortless. Of course, after spending the day with Kathy I came home… and Yep… you guested it… ‘brain fry’ big time.  It sometimes feels like I’ve been run over by a Mac truck… and there is not a lot to say… in fact I find there is nothing to say… and that’s great.

So where a couple of weeks ago I was screaming ‘No, I don’t want to hear anymore’… in this moment…my heart is open, I feel rested and relaxed, and watching… yes lots of watching… and welcoming it all… and just being. There seems to be an increase of compassion for others, a willingness to feel my aloneness, and a deeper sense of trust in life. I’m very grateful Kathy is in my life. I’m very grateful that the ‘thing’ that is undoing me continues to draw me to Kathy and the presence of Love in her, and others like her. As Kathy would say… it’s just Love drawn towards Love. I suppose that means the Love in me also. M x