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Laura Geiger The Fool

The Fool

"The Fool is the essential poetic integrity of life itself, clear and naked, overflowing in cosmic fun; not the product of intellectual achievement, but a creation of the culture of the heart. A culture of the genius of life. I believe that there is in life, and in the human psyche, a certain quality, an inviolate eternal innocence, and this quality I call the Fool. It is a continuous wisdom and compassion that heals with fun and magic.”
{ Cecil Collins }

Cecil Collins, Fool & Flower 

What the heck is the Fool and fooling?
Is it just acting silly?

um no it's, like, way more deep than that. also yes.

The Fool exposes three fallacies:

The Fallacy of Intellect

The Fool shows us that information will never satiate (Kay) and that cleverness exists in opposition to generosity (Bass). By agreeing to the superiority of the one way of knowing (rationality, logic, proof, truth, science), we help maintain a false hierarchy, a split of self into matter and spirit, and a world that lacks meaning. The Fool helps us hold multiple truths and risk occupying the unknowing that leads to true nourishment.

​"But modern society, by its concentration upon Science to the point where it threatens to sterilize the growth and life of the human psyche, has outlawed the priest, the artist and the Fool; and has consequently outlawed an entire field of human vision." (Collins, 1947)
 

The Fallacy of Self-Protection

We believe that curating, editing, and molding ourselves in a particular way will keep us safe from judgment and rejection. Even if it's sometimes true, we must consider the cost. Our inner queen keeps things functioning but not alive, safe but dull. When we can manage to let ourselves be playful, this play is mechanized (Gaulier). It's pretending to play; it's the queen pretending to be the Fool. We repeatedly allow our internalized oppression to dictate our vitality. Unlike the queen, the Fool dares, risks, and trusts. By following suit, we confront the infinite and sacred self and discover much more than safety. We find an immediacy, a spontaneity, a poetry that sparks feelings of true freedom. We find the belonging we seek.

The Fallacy of Authenticity

The Fool reveals that our desperation for authentic self-expression is misplaced, or at least misnamed. When we find ourselves painfully unexpressed, we think the answer is to change our content (what we say, do, and make) in order to reflect something real. But in doing so, we become even more content-oriented, falling into the trap of using what we say and do to justify our existence and prove our worth. We also miss the point: content can never be truly authentic because we are infinite beings in a finite world. We cannot cram an ocean into a pond. Self-expression can only ever represent a facet of our complexity.

The Fool calls us instead to two paths: 1) a radical reorientation toward the timeless, infinite self (the one who does the saying), thereby making our content less crucial, less serious, and more playful and 2) letting life stir within us beauty, inspiration, and enchantment so stunning that the outpouring of our hearts has little to do with thought or opinion and everything to do with becoming the mouthpiece of love itself.


 

It feels like in a lot of ways, this [Fooling workshop] is the safest I’ve felt to be seen and also witnessed in a really vulnerable way. It feels like I needed that really badly. I have done it. I’ve made the first step and am feeling excited to see that grow.

Meg Galvin

So where does that leave us?
How do we work with the Fool?

I believe the Fool is a living field, a mystical archetypal energy that lives within and around us. I have witnessed the absolute magic of the Fool over and over in my personal and professional practice. It's real, and it shows up. 

You may be familiar with the Fool in tarot or in the medieval court. You may have heard of fooling as an improvisational performance art, a way of entering into the empty space and engaging with audiences in radical presence. I work with the Fool in a similar way, although I do not use disorientation as pedagogy, and our audience is simply the other participants in the workshop or class. In my practice, the way of the Fool is a method of personal expansion and liberation. I hold a strong container of cueing, play, and connection. A Fool workshop has games, laughter, improvisation, connection with the senses and somatic consciousness, and a nearly indescribable quality of intimacy and innocence.

 

We practice listening for the offer, following the impulse, closing the gap between internal and external experience, and reaching outside ourselves into the ether of poetic imagination, never knowing what will meet us there. We bear witness to each other's Fool, cheering as we see another casual step toward the unknown. It's an unforgettable ride. 

I’m taking away a lot of things from Fooling: a sadness or wistfulness that most experiences and most social interactions don’t feel like this, a hunger for more of the feeling of not planning and rolling with being awkward, and a craving for even more spaces where there’s permission to do that.

Susannah Brister

I am currently offering two levels of Fool work: beginner and begin(again)er. In Fool, we don't really get anywhere; the further we go, the more we start. We begin and then begin again.

 

If you have taken a Fool workshop with me in the past, you are welcome to attend a begin(again)er workshop. Begin(again)er is more advanced because we have already established a foundation in the practice.

That said, every Fool experience is different, so beginner level is always open to everyone, even advanced Fools!

Beginner Fool is an opportunity to be yourself in front of other people, to be fully alive and seen doing it, to take a break from managing, curating, and polishing yourself into presentability, to speak without having something smart to say. I will help you get there, I promise.

Begin(again)er Fool is taking this puppy for a ride. Let's see where this newfound connection to the Fool can lead. What's the next step? And how can I bring this workshop experience back into my life?

--

We are creating creatures in a world that wants not only to dictate who and what we can be but to monetize and control it. We are meant to become the evidence that something has blown through us, but we have forgotten how to pay attention. It lives in us, this memory, this echo of being alive, of being moved, of letting our expression be the mouthpiece of love, of wonder, of a planet capable of extraordinary passions. The urgency is not that you must express yourself. The urgency is that you must express the exquisite imprint of  that which moves you. The poetic longing inside you is part of your humanity.

The Fool is calling. It's time to answer. 
 

 

Each workshop below is 4pm-8pm European standard time.

10am-2pm Eastern standard

7am-11am Pacific standard

8:30pm-12:30am India

*If your daylight saving time begins March 12, then the March 25 time will be different for you. Please search and confirm the correct time for yourself.

  • Feb 11, 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM GMT+1
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  • Mar 11, 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM GMT+1
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  • Mar 25, 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM GMT+1
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