”When you heed the call to become something greater than yourself, you transform not only your own life but the lives of all those you touch.”
Talking to Jeff Masters you’d never guess that his career began many, many years ago, after all, he’s not even what you would consider middle-aged. Jeff’s career—you might say, “soul’s calling”--began at the tender age of 5 years old. His is an interesting story of circumstances and people coming into his life as if on cue to guide him and inform his work making him uniquely qualified to teach students how to navigate their soul’s calling, and, in a therapeutic sense, how to consciously release “issues in the tissues.”
Jeff will provide four workshop opportunities at the 2018 Midwest Yoga and Oneness Festival, May 4th-6th. Don't miss this great opportunity to meet Jeff and learn more about his work as an Integrative Yoga and Somatic Therapist specializing in assessing and treating somatic-based trauma, chronic pain, and neuro-energetic dysfunction. He has studied with many of the greatest minds in the mind/body science field.
Jeff describes his work as creating a bridge between the eastern art and science of yoga and the western understanding of medicine, consciousness and psychobiology. He explains that the mind and body are not separate elements and any separation is an illusion. The body is, in fact, “crystalized mind”. What Jeff does from a therapeutic perspective is engage the impressions that are crystalized into the tissues, that effect our behavior, our perceptions, and our consciousness and allow them to unwind and move into a changeable state so that the individual can work with them from a conscious, mindful place rather than being controlled and manipulated by them.
From a teaching perspective, he finds that the art and science of yoga is a path or formula for the liberation of our consciousness. Jeff's classes bridge eastern and western philosophy and knowledge in a meaningful way so that each student can connect with the lessons. “Yoga may feel uncomfortable to some people who think it’s a sort of mystical practice. But Yoga has concrete, pragmatic techniques that one can use that will create lasting and profound shifts in our perceptions, consciousness and reality. The story of your life is written into tissues of your body. Yoga allows us to lift the ink from the pages and rewrite or erase these stories.”
Jeff’s thirty-year career researching and practicing Somatic Therapies was influenced in part by experiences he had as a child growing up in California. He and his family were exposed to several supernatural experiences, as he describes them, and Jeff himself had several profound experiences as well. These events led him to the understanding that there was more to the physical world than simply what we see.
He understood that the world as we see it is not the truth of the experience, that there was a whole other level of existence beyond our limited perception of reality. This understanding opened him up to perceiving nonverbal and nonlocal intelligences. It was the start of what eventually became the foundation of his work. Only few years later, as if by coincidence, Jeff began meeting a series of influential people who were to become his mentors.
Thinking to toughen him up, Jeff’s step-father enrolled him in a martial arts class. Once Jeff overheard his teacher mentioning things like Tibetan Monks, levitation, and other mystical abilities from the far east, Jeff knew there was something more that needed to be researched and became one of the youngest readers to devour all the new age books he could find at his local bookstore. His unusual curiosity lead him to read about Yoga, meditation, mystical beasts, astral projection and crystals. At 8 years old, Jeff is arguably one of the youngest readers of “Light on Pranayama” by B. K. S. Iyengar.
Around this same time, while attending his martial arts class, he observed a gentleman doing Yoga and asked him if he would teach him. The man agreed only if Jeff would commit to 6 months of study and meditation. Jeff, still only 8 years old, started his classical yoga training, became initiated into transcendental meditation tradition, and began a lifelong study of the deeper practices of yoga.
At this same time, Jeff met the woman who would become his spiritual mentor. Taken with his knowledge of the healing properties of the rose quartz pendant she wore, his soon-to-be mentor invited him to a meditation group where an older, proper, English woman channeled the Ascended Masters. Again, this is hardly typical entertainment or education for the average 8-year-old. Jeff was the only male, and child, in the group. These experiences solidified his relationship with Joelle who became his life-long teacher and mentor, and a force which would shape his skills to calm the mind, go inward, and actively sense / channel energy.
Noticing Jeff’s interest in Chinese medicine and body work, Joelle introduced him to a local body worker who became Jeff’s somatic therapy mentor. A licensed massage therapist, she began teaching Jeff the rudimentary aspects and techniques of body work (massage, Trager therapy, herbalism and acupressure). Often, while working on clients as a body worker, Jeff would be simultaneously learning about perceiving and running energy, with Joelle present during the sessions.
These early teachers; the yoga teacher, meditation/energy worker, and bodyworker all took him as their student from the age of 8 years old until he was 16. At that time he graduated from high school a year and a half early, and, after an introduction from Joelle, began to work as a researcher in the lab of Marcel Vogel, a former IBM research scientist and then director of Psychic Research Inc. In Vogel’s lab, Jeff studied the structuring of fluids with consciousness using crystalline technology (this was long before Masaru Emoto’s work involving human consciousness and the molecular structuring of water). “Marcel was such a scientist and mystic ahead of his time. So far ahead that some people didn’t listen to him. Now, it’s become mainstream“.
It was during this time in the lab that Jeff began to catch a glimpse of his life's calling. His understanding of the “issues in the tissues” began to come into focus and crystalize - how life events get encoded in the liquid crystalline structure of our body and how consciousness effects all aspects of our psycho-biological and psycho-energetic experience. Awareness of his "internal environment and posture" became an even more basic training. In the lab Jeff was trained to be “neutral,” using mindfulness and consciousness techniques. Jeff was required to remain as neutral as possible as he conducted experiments so as not to inadvertently taint the samples with own his emotions or intentions - which would ruin the experiments.
"It’s literally a calling; a soul’s path. I was navigating the sacred journey of my life.”
It was through these amazing teachers that Jeff found his awareness expanded, his life shaped, and his life’s calling. “These beings gave me such a gift of their time, their knowledge and ultimately their love. There is no way I can ever repay what they’ve done for me except to honor them through my work.”
He acknowledges that his was not the normal route. “I believe that, as a therapist, apprenticing as a body worker since 8 years old, my life turned into a vocation. It’s literally a calling; a soul’s path. I was navigating the sacred journey of my life.”
Find out more about Jeff’s workshops and intensive throughout the festival weekend: The 5-Steps to a Radiant Practice!, Matri Bhāvana: A Spiritual Practice, Yoga & the Energetics of Trauma, Journey into the Lotus of the Heart by clicking HERE.
To learn more about The Masters Institute or Jeff's nonprofit organization, the SevaSoul Foundation, both facilities dedicated to vibrant health, wellness and the realization of the fully actualized human potential, visit www.TheMastersInstitute.net or www.SevaSoulFoundation.org. For more information about Jeff, his work, workshop/seminar schedule, and blog, visit www.JeffMasters.net.
Karen Kramer is a yoga instructor and festival blogger.