My childhood landscape was the vast ocean of the Southern California coast. I found solace and comfort in that wildness. I would often swim in the dark cold waters across the bay, or body surf the waves as they came crashing to meet the shore. When I was 8 years old, I began my years of sailing solo or crewing for others in a variety of small and large sailing vessels, working with the wind and the currents to find my way. Now I love to find my way in the wildness of mountain trails, white water rivers, desert canyons, and the mysterious images that visit me in my nighttime dreams and active imaginations.
Depth work is my destiny. I grew up in a large family filled with love and pain, laughter and tears, lots of raucous musical gatherings, and way too much turmoil from addictions and emotional traumas. I became a seeker at a very young age, determined to create a life that included an open heart to all that life might present, and a calm center cultivated through self-awareness, and compassion for self and others. I also believe in the healing power of chaos and confusion. This human life, often littered with broken hearts, death and birth, loss and triumph, and terrible and astounding beauty and love, can be messy and unpredictable!
My life continues to be a stretch between joy and suffering, but I have faith in this soulful journey. I am so grateful for all the love, wisdom and guidance that I have received from mentors and teachers along the way, that I have a burning desire to “pay this forward”. I am truly blessed, because every day I am with people who have the courage and curiosity to look within in the quest for a more fully realized life. Our wounds and our losses are really the doorway into a life worth living.
As Leonard Cohen says:
‘Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.’
Theresa Holleran received her MSW from the University of Utah in 1975. She has trained extensively with mentors and teachers all over the world, including Marion Woodman, and the the Marion Woodman Foundation in Canada, Switzerland and the United States, and with Arnold Mindell and the Process work Center in Zurich, Switzerland, and Portland Oregon.
Theresa has taught graduate courses in Transpersonal Psychology, Eco-psychology, and Process Work, and has co-created national and international retreats and sacred journeys in both urban and wilderness settings on themes of healing and transformation; suffering, wisdom and resilience; and the Sacred Inner Marriage.
In 1978, she co-authored the Peer Interaction Training Manual, after designing the Peer Interaction Training Program in the Salt Lake City School District, which won the Surety Public Health Award in 1978. She has published articles in Network Magazine and Catalyst Magazine.
Her life is abundant with family, a great community of friends, oil painting, creative writing, dancing, singing, yoga and meditation, service, adventure in wild inner and outer landscapes, and traveling the world.