I viewed the world one way. It was linear, left brain dominated, and highly logical. Mention the word 'meditation' and the image of a monk in an Asian cave or long haired hare krishna type on a San Francisco street corner came to mind. It was my idea of 'weird'.
Then... in walked Dr. Nancy Spence to class one day in college.
My worldview was about to shift.
My view of reality was about to be shattered. (But for the good).
Drawing from her thousands of books read, hundreds of cities/countries visited, cultures studied, and years of experience exposed me to years of knowledge and wisdom that I did not/would not receive from TV shows, movies, news, magazines, or anything that mainstream media offered.
Her class and book Life Medicine: Wisdom for Extraordinary Living was one of a kind.
SHE SEEMED TO KNOW THINGS OTHERS DID NOT
It inspired me to learn as much as I possibly could, and about a world I did not yet know about.
With a PhD in East/West Psychology to include studies of human potential and interviews with highly successful people, she was able to weave together an award winning class on how to live a meaningful life:
"Her lifelong passion for world cultures and what they have to teach about optimal well-being has taken her to 30 countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Far East, and South Pacific. She has studied Asian psychotherapies in Japan; explored Chinese medicines in The Peoples' Republic of China; observed Hindu ritual along the sacred Ganges; shared midnight stories with New Zealand's Maori; studied Celtic spirituality in Ireland and Iona, Scotland; and hiked East Africa's Serengeti with one of the world's last semi-nomadic tribes.
At the heart of it all is a deep enthusiasm for exploring how humans live their best lives and then helping others discover and maximize their own unique excellence." (From her bio)
She was like a walking billboard advertisement of 'unique excellence'.
It's like she knew something that others didn't know. I didn't gather it came from fancy cars, expensive jewelry, elaborate homes, or designer labels either. I've seen lots of individuals as such, but I have not seen many individuals like Dr. Nancy Spence.
She was Brilliant, Bright, Beautiful as if shining with clear light.
Thankful for the wisdom shared during her course(s). (One had to do the work...but it worked). It expanded my worldview in ways I had previously been limited to.
I learned to look beyond the surface. There was much more than what was visible at a surface level. It provided some type of internal guidance system that I had not known about before.
Until this point, if Eastern philosophy or other wisdom traditions were mentioned- it was too 'out there'. Anything intangible or termed 'spiritual' wasn't really 'real' unless it could be scientifically proven or materially viewed.
My career choice changed, too. While I set out for a career in CIA or FBI or similar type career as an undergrad at UC, I realized there was other work I would do. It led me to people, places, and projects I couldn't have imagined.
I know she has affected other students the way she affected me with her gift.
She continues to move others to inspired purpose today.
Lewis Howes posted this meme recently. Minus the dog, this is an accurate image of Dr. Nancy Spence's impact that her courses led to at University of Cincinnati.
BEFORE Nancy's class Life Medicine. AFTER Nancy's class Life Medicine:
MIND FULL V. MINDFUL