Today’s Solutions: June 04, 2023

Philosopher Jean Houston credits Gay Luce’s success with her Nine Gates Mystery School to her depth of understanding of the human condition.

Carmel Wroth | Jan/Feb 2009 issue

Gay Luce, Founder, Nine Gates Mystery School. Corte Madera, California

Photo: Caramel Wroth

When Gay Luce was a teenager, she sometimes worried she was crazy. Living in an agnostic family, she would occasionally experience the inexplicable presence of light and love. As a young adult, working as a researcher and science writer, she struggled with doubts. Still, she felt certain of the existence of “a divine force” with a knowledge that came from “the hidden recesses of myself.”
In 1985, she created a training program that provided keys so others could access a personal, experience-based knowledge of the spiritual. Originally she offered her Nine Gates Mystery School—held during two nine-day workshops a year, to adults only. But three years ago she began offering it to youth, because she saw that contemporary media-fed society, with its emphasis on outward success, is especially hard on teenagers. “Our society says, ‘You may not express your sadness, your worries—you can’t have any emotion except cheer,’” says Luce. “I realized the youth needed a place where they could feel accepted and loved unconditionally.”
Kids in the program learn to connect to their emotions and their spirits through a series of exercises and rituals drawn from the world’s spiritual traditions. In a loving communal atmosphere, they learn skills like meditation, creating sacred space, self-hypnosis, emotional release and non-violent communication. Parents say their children come back transformed from moody teenagers into self-aware, loving young people. The school’s effect on students is mysterious even to Luce. “The students have these explosions of confidence. It’s like magic to me.”
“Gay Luce is a true Bodhisattva if ever there was one. She brings a depth, clarity and understanding to the human condition that has opened new ways of being for many, and she has brought another order of possibility and consciousness to our time.” -Jean Houston, scholar, philosopher and researcher into human capacities

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