On CEI message board a discusscion about HAI began in 2004. It is 36 pages long. We recommend reading it so one can make an informed decision whether to get involved.
Here are a few highlights to get started with. However, they are no substitute for reading the entire discussion.
There are multiple levels of HAI.
A person named Daydreamer wrote that she benefitted from HAI Level One but
became traumatized by further HAI workshops.
Daisho made a report in 2006 and noted secrecy in HAI.
Five years later in 2001 another person also noted secrecy. During those 5 years plenty of HAI supporters participated in this discussion so HAI would have been aware of concerns about secrecy and could have become candid and up front about its methods during those five years between 2006 and 2011.
Below is the text of a very informative and balanced report made in 2006 by "daisho'. The person went so far as to say that the HAI level One seemed good. However, this person expressed serious misgivings about other features of HAI and mentioned a non disclosure requirement.
In many discussions on the CEI message board we have learned that this is a huge red flag. If you do not know the full details of what will be asked of you or done to you, you cannot make an adult informed decision whether to participate.
Here is this persons report.
human awareness institute
Posted by: diashto
Date: March 20, 2006 01:35PM
Hi.. first time poster, but i'll be brief as I can.
I'm dating someone who went to HAI L1 and L2. They profoundly changed her life, for the better, according to the people she's known before and after.. but not in the direction that I believe they had intended.
You see.. she used to be extremely.. lets say.. "loose". She would sleep with anyone, thinking it was the price that she had to pay for the human contact, the afterglow, which she desired more than anything, as she was hurt very badly.
L1 gave her her voice back, L2 gave her the courage to say no, and to stand up for her decisions.
At L1, she was nude (about half of the other particpants were nude at any given time)... but at L2 she was clothed almost all the time, whereas most of the other participants were unclothed most of the time.
She finally had come to value her body as a precious gift, and not something to be shared with just anybody.
As she and I got to know eachother better, of course HAI came up, and she started telling me how much more uncomfortable with the nudity she was, and how that seemed exceptionally unusual for someone moving through the workshops (there's 7 levels, in case you're wondering, and you do have to do them in order from 1-4, then you can do 5-7 at your lesiure).
Through further discussion, I began to suspect some foul play... and so I agreed to go to an "Intro", which is a free, come-as-you-are, clothing-required (ours was in a conference room at a hotel) introduction to the workshops and what they were supposed to be like.
Upon arrival, you're greeted with many many smiling faces of the "interns", the facilitators, and the past participants who are bringing their friends to introduce them to the organization. After a brief history of the company, the facilitator at this particular intro asked us to clear out a large area to do what they call a "Hand-on-Heart", which is the traditional greet/part ritual of the workshops.
It was made perfectly clear that you were "at choice" to participate in these exercises. However, the critical part of me wanted to simply observe, in a clinical sense, what actually was going on. My girlfriend decided to sit out with me, becuase she didnt want me to be sitting all alone, i think, or my cynicism had worn off alittle on her.
The 40-some people who were there arranged themselves in concentric rings, and began the exercise/ritual. The gentleman running the PA system started some soft music, and the facilitator (Felicia, if you follow the link at the bottom) began speaking softly through the mic, instructing the people to "look in to their eyes, see the angel within", etc etc. All in a very soothing, very calming voice.. not unlike a basic hypnotic technique, and indeed with the music playing in the background, one could very easily be suggested.
The loops went around twice, everyone Hand-on-Hearting (this is a short handshake-like thing where you hold your hand over your heart, and on the facilitator's instruction, you clasp hands in front, then kiss the back of their hand, all the while staring into your current partner's eyes, then taking a step to the left) everyone else. After this, everyone had an opportunity to "mill and hug", where you were able to greet whomever you "connected" with during the hand-on-heart, and ask them if they would like a hug, again trumpeting the "at choice" thing.
Then it was time for the second exercise, which I didnt catch the name of. In this exercise, you were paired off with someone for some listening time. I obviously did this with my girlfriend, although truth being told spending minutes just listening to her talk to get her frustrations out without fear of reprocussions is something that I try to do whenever possible. Other people paired off with strangers, or whomever they'd come with, etc. After about 5 minutes of pure listening (listeners were encouraged to do nothing but look and watch the talkers), switch was called, and the talkers became listeners, etc. All in all, a basic relationship building exercise.
After the second talker was done talking, the third exercise began. In this exercise, you were asked to caress the face of the person in front of you (whomever you were partnered with for the previous exercise) for several minutes, all while Felicia was speaking, suggesting movements and thoughts and feelings to have during the exercise. After several minutes of face-time, she instructed to move in closer and begin caressing face, scalp, neck, and arms.
I can only imagine where it would go in a private (read: Not in a hotel conference room) after that, where clothing is optional. I'm reasonably certian it wouldn't stop with neck and arms. While the touch may not be strictly sexual, it certianly was suggested several times that it would be sensual, but never specifically said an outright turn-on.
After participants switched, there was another few minutes of listening/talking, where you could share your feelings about what just happened during the last exercise.
During the closing of the intro, Felicia pointed a few comments specifically at me, saying "... and if you chose not to participate.." knowing full well that my girl and I were the only ones not to participate in the first exercise, and such a comment was patently unnecessary, except as a subtle push to participate "next time", for fear of being singled out again.
Luckily, being as I was looking for such subtle pushes, I didnt fall prey to them. If you check the facilitators page you can see that there are no less than 3 certified hypnotherapists as facilitators.
Overall, the experience I've had personally with HAI has been ... enlightening. It DOES make a difference in many people's lives.. it can be extremely good for some people - the people who shy away from all contact because they've been hurt in the past, or the people that, like my girl, dont value themselves because they've always been told they're worthless.
Then again, so does Dr. Phil, to the right type of people.
I would (and have) suggest a Level 1 to anyone who wants to find their voice, or anyone who needs help regaining a basic trust in the human race.
However, some of the other things that I've heard about Level 2 seriously deterr me from reccomending it as a full path. While I can't share these things (there's a verbal non-disclosure agreement, "What happens at HAI stays at HAI") for fear of reprocussions, suffice it to say that any time you get mostly-naked people in a room touching, caressing, stroking, bathing, watching, and even inspecting each other's parts, with no apparent moral boundaries, then going so far as to connect with each other on that deep, spiritual level, there's gonna be tendancies towards polyamory and/or swinging. So much so that many of the participant's blog and IM profiles show interests in group sex, polyamory, etc.. something that my girlfriend is mortified by.
And the simple fact that Level 4 is titled "Integrating Spirituality and Sexuality" is VERY unnerving. Isn't the "Free Love" movement what got everyone in trouble in the 60s? Seems to me that they're preaching an extremely similar message, although with no drugs (at least, not at the workshops).
I had actually made the comparison to a cult not long after me and my girl started seeing each other. She had the knee-jerk protest reaction of "No it's not!" But on further digging.. it's become incredibly difficult to find anything truly negative about the organization. Nobody seems to have any doubts, or any protests, or even any criticisms, that we've been able to find, and participants are PARTICULARLY tight-lipped about what goes on in the later levels.
I find it difficult to believe that she's the first to have a negative impression of the organization as a whole, based on what she's experienced during the workshops and with the people that attended them, however there's no shortage of people singing their praises.
Indeed, many groupsex, nudist, and polyamory sites have links to HAI and suggest going to their workshops. HAI doesn't outright encourage doing things of a sexual nature with more than one person at a time, but they certainly do not have a problem with it.
So much for a short post, but I hope it helps someone out there.
THis post was written in response to a HAI intern:
Re: human awareness institute
Posted by: Sheryl Onuma
Date: February 03, 2011 04:09AM
Thank you very much for what you have written. I thank you for the time taken in doing so... However I have seen with my own two eyes and heard with my own two ears...and I did not put write on an web site for the fun of it....Allen Stewart..NOT TERRY
The truth is people are being caught up in a secretive organisation.. why not publically and fully disclose the contents of each of your levels...why are names kept secret for example? Why are participants not allowed to talk about what when on at each of the levels? You say to me there are no secrets.....please....please...use some common sense.....why not publish a brochure with all you do on Level one and Level two and so on and so forth...........now that is what everyone needs to know before they are caught up in all this and lots of money taken off them....why are these so called retreats happening out in the country behind closed doors.. are visitors allowed? Again common sense would tell you when you analyise this that something definately disgusting is going on here...what woman could possible benefit from having her private parts exposed and looked at by God only knows what sort of people...they could easily be perverts or criminals...preying on these sort of people...I do not like this and nothing on this earth that you would or could say would ever convince me that this is good for any human being...sorry....this is a dreadful sickness.....
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/28/2019 09:03AM by corboy.