Part 3 Early Adulthood

One of the great good fortunes of my life was to join an organisation called Fusion Australia – now Fusion International. It is a christian based, non-denominational, youth and community work organisation. Staff were paid by donation (called ‘living by faith’ in the Evangelical jargon) – so few of us were wealthy. Fusion was where I spent my 20’s.

I joined when it was getting organised and it was still quite fluid. The wonderful thing about Fusion was that they took training seriously. I finally found a group who would tell me how to do what they wanted me to do. And they had a genuinely wholistic view of the person (this was rare in Evangelical christianity at the time – it is becoming more common).

How good the training was I didn’t appreciate until I left. When I left I found that there were people charging high prices for stuff which was a fraction of what we had been given in Fusion for free. The biggest learning for me was about my emotions. I found that my emotions were important and valuable. Fusion also introduced me to the world of psychotherapy (touching on Carl Rogers, Transactional Analysis, Gestalt, Viktor Frankl and Gerard Egan). This was just the psychology stuff, there was much else.

I was somewhat fortunate that the team I was part of were very supportive and encouraging. We also got on well with the national director and so had (on the whole) quite good support from the national administration. We were largely supported to get on with implementing the vision in our locality. This seemed at the time to be simple good sense – and it still seems so to me. What I didn’t realise until I left was how rare this common good sense is.
It was during this time that I read and worked through Perls, Hefferline and Goodman’s Gestalt Therapy. This book changed my life.

Probably my biggest learning from Fusion, other than the personal one about my emotions, was what people can do with willingness and support. This applied to Fusion staff, some of who were gifted but most of who developed abilities due to the training we received and learning how to do things. It also applied to many of the young people we worked with. Some of these young people were seen as ‘quite difficult’ but many of them achieved good things by anyone’s standards – when their background was taken into account, the achievements were even more remarkable. As a result of this I am very optimistic about what individuals can achieve – especially with some support.

It was toward the end of my time in Fusion that I discovered my own approach to spirituality (through journalling) and found what I thought would be my own contribution: a christian, physical spirituality. This was regarded as either weird or so far off the map as to be incomprehensible.

I left Fusion because my spirituality was leading me other places – I was not fitting with Evangelicalism terribly well. I had also met the woman who would become my first wife. Falling in love had an elation and intensity that I hadn’t experienced before. It was a remarkable and delightful experience.

Being married and negotiating the world of work were challenges which lay ahead.


Would you like to feel less stressed?
Could you do with more joy in your life?

The answer is living authentically. Buy the book or sign up for the course now from my Living Authentically website.

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12 Comments to “An Introvert’s Journey”

  1. Chris Edgar says:

    I was inspired by the example of the organization you were talking about — it seems that a lot of the people I know who do transformational work (myself included) were blessed to find a group like that early in life — for me, it was an “alternative” school I went to from ages 5-12, where we had no grades and called all our teachers by their first names, and that was the first place where I learned about meditation.

  2. Evan says:

    Hi Chris, that’s a very interesting point. By the way, my partner went to an alternative high school in Australia (it eventually met its demise due to one person’s internal machinations – extremely sad). It’s something to keep my eye out for – I’d love to know more. Thanks for your comment.

  3. Adelaide says:

    Many schools – mainstream and alternative – now teach their students about meditation.

    And if they don’t actually learn it during a school activity, they may learn something about it in a study camp.

    For instance, through guided imagery.

    Across the Bass Strait, I read about Fusion and P (the Tasmanian town in which it is set).

    Mal is still around and he won an award for his development work. He seemed to learn psychology and psychotherapy by the citizen route rather than the diplomate route. The former has its benefits and its pitfalls.

    as you will see The Ultimate Betrayal [March 21st, THE AGE Online]

    Derryn Hinch was the writer of the article. He has long been an advocate for those who have been sexually abused; though he has been known for his muck-raking qualities.

    Would love to read about where your spirituality took you next, particularly in the challenges of being married and finding work.

    A Christianity of the flesh and the body can take you to some interesting places! Places where the Evangelicals never expected, and couldn’t follow.

  4. Adelaide says:

    PS:

    There were probably some good things about Fusion and the growth which you were going through at the time, as well as the work you were exposed to of all the thinkers and feelers.

    And it’s great to see that people can learn things through their will and heart.

    <blockquote cite=I was somewhat fortunate that the team I was part of were very supportive and encouraging. We also got on well with the national director and so had (on the whole) quite good support from the national administration. We were largely supported to get on with implementing the vision in our locality. This seemed at the time to be simple good sense – and it still seems so to me. What I didn’t realise until I left was how rare this common good sense is.

  5. bikehikebabe says:

    I can’t add anything to these comments. But I like reading your blog.

  6. Evan says:

    Hi Adelaide, I hadn’t seen the article. I hope Sarah is getting the support she needs. It is a pretty biased article in my view, there are some gaps I think. I think Fusion acted appropriately. Derryn as a journalist isn’t exactly of a high standard. If I was contacted by Derryn I’m not sure I’d respond either. It may also be relevant that he was working at 3AW when Fusion owned it.

    Mal did learn via the citizen route.

    I’ll be doing another post about the next stage in my story so stay tuned.

  7. Evan says:

    Fusion on the whole for me was a remarkably positive experience.

  8. Evan says:

    Thanks

  9. Walter says:

    You are lucky to have been part of such organization. You have been exposed to the deeper levels of the self as well as handling your emotions. In my case, I learned thru experience and analytical reading. It served me good because I have also learned some deeper aspects of our humanity.

    Life is all lessons and the more we see the wisdom of every events in our lives, the more we elevate ourselves to higher consciousness. 🙂

  10. Evan says:

    Hi Walter, Yes I was very lucky. If we can see the wisdom in all events I’m sure we will elevate ourselves. Thanks for your comment, and I think it is your first time here so, Welcome.

  11. Lyndal says:

    Hi Evan,
    I remember your venture into physical spirituality. Someone in the house church gathering shared what you had written with us – probably Jeremy (via Col Timbrell?)This was in the early 90’s. I remember really liking it and even trying some of it. Unfortunately I was (and still am) too lacking in self discipline to get very far but I believe there was some great stuff there.
    Lyndal.

  12. Evan says:

    Thanks Lyndal, glad you liked it.

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