Authentic presence

fran nino authentic presence
(Image by Fran Niño)

innocently present
not making anything happen
not preventing anything from happening
revealing itself
through me

Voor Nederlands, klik hier.

Authentic presence means being available, open to the immediacy of the moment, simultaneously moving and being moved, touching and being touched. A sensual dance at the interstices between inside and outside, self and other, between venturing out and welcoming in, like interfering waves in an ocean, seamlessly dissolving into each other, effortlessly returning to their singularities. Authenticity here doesn’t require a “unique essence” or a “real, true core”. It is rather the absence of such a core that makes resistance or separation groundless and brings forth a vibrant void through which an untethered life can reveal itself.

Authentic presence is paramount if we want to love without conditions or die without fear. Only if we can be fragile, porous and transparant, can we see ourselves, the other, and the world around without the mist of projected fears and unconscious desires. To witness another as (s)he is, to be different together, allows for a love that gives space. Seeing myself with radical honesty, without holding onto comforting or numbing identities, makes it possible to die without regret or fear. 

Authentic presence is a skill that can be trained. This workshop proposes concrete exercises to practice looking at yourself with radical honesty, connecting intimately with your own body, disclosing yourself in connection with another, and following your body in movements that automatically arise. Exercises include meditation, self-exploration, structured dialogues, movement, etc., alone, in pairs or in group. You can always choose to not participate or stop an exercise if you feel uncomfortable. 


June 3rd. Days always start at 9:30am (arriving from 9am) and end at 5pm. If you understand and speak both languages you can combine. During one weekend, the days are complementary but not identical. One day may focus more on movement and body, the other day more on relating and speaking.


Stijn Smeets. Trained as a psychologist, shadow worker, classical tantrik (Tibetan Buddhism, Mahamudra, Dzogchen, Tantrik Shaivism), monk, scientist, death dula, violinist and singer, Stijn combines techniques and insight from eastern and western wisdom traditions, philosophy, and science to create learning environments that are transformative, radical, honest, and confronting, and simultaneously supportive, caring, safe, and nurturing. More about his intuitions you can read here.


We work with a flexible price. Dependent on your financial status, you pay between €80 an €120 euro (reference price is €95) per person per day. There are 8 spots. If 80 euro is above your budget, please let us know. There may still be some scholarships available.

This price includes a simple lunch (soup and bread). You’re welcome to bring your own lunch as well.


House of the beloved, Emile bockstaellaan, 1020 Laken (Brussels)

Want to join?

You can join by sending us an email or giving us a call. Please ask us your questions or tell us your concerns. Your spot is reserved once we have received your transfer on account number IBAN BE44 7370 5359 2745, with a mention of your name and the cycle(s) or day you register for.