Born in 1964
Founder and Director of FreiRaum GEO
Since 2013, Kerstin has been on the Executive Leadership Team of the Center for World Philosophy and Religion (former Center for Integral Wisdom) founded by Dr. Marc Gafni, Ken Wilber, Mariana Caplan, and Sally Kempton - until the end of 2020 as Executive Director, now as a Editorial Director of the Great Library of CosmoErotic Humanism in direct collaboration with Dr. Marc Gafni.
She is a lineage holder and authorized Senior Teacher for Unique Self & Integral Wisdom Distinctions:
Through her participation in the leadership team of the Center and her direct collaboration with Dr. Marc Gafni, Kerstin is directly at the source of this constantly evolving work.
She has more than 10 years of experience as a coach & trainer for personal and professional development as well as teacher for World Spirituality and is a certified Personnel & Organizational Developer (DAA) and Project Manager (GPM).
Through her participation in the first live cohort of the online courses Essential and Advanced Integral developed by Ken Wilber, Clint Fuhs, and Team, as well as in various integral conferences and seminars, Kerstin has evolved her understanding of Integral Theory and its application in real-world situations. That has culminated in her meeting and beginning to study and work with Dr. Marc Gafni in 2011.
Kerstin has trained as a dance teacher for ballet, modern dance, and jazz dance (Bachelor) with studies in the Netherlands (Hogeschool vor de Kunsten Arnhem) and New York City (on scholarship at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center). She has studied Montessori education (IfgL), Systemic Constellations Work, and Energy & Consciousness Work (School of Energy Mastery, etc.). In 2021, she has completed a year-long Professional Training in Trauma Therapy at Haus der Familientherapie, Volkach-Fahr. In 2022 she completed Level 1 of the Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training in Schweinfurt at Prana Jio Academy and has been doing a regular Kundalini Yoga practice, including with Jai Dev Singh, since the beginning of 2021.
Kerstin has engaged intensive Spiritual Training for over 30 Years with:
Dr. Robert Jaffe, Christine Wentzel, Lisa Swidler, and finally Dr. Marc Gafni in his groundbreaking work of what he calls CosmoErotic Humanism (which includes Anthro-Ontology, Unique Self Theory, new narratives of Eros, Evolutionary Love, and Intimacy, Integral Wisdom Distinctions, First Values & First Principles, as well as World Spirituality Based on Integral Principles).
Elevator pitch ???
What do you do for a living, dear Kerstin?
When people ask me what I do for a living, I often stutter and hem and haw. What I do doesn't really fit into one of the many boxes we know. My work has far too many different facets and dimensions for that.
The idea of an elevator pitch (the thought that you should be able to explain what you do in an elevator between two floors in a way that the other person is interested and wants to know more) has always somehow fascinated me. At the same time, I didn't know how to do it for myself.
In 2021, I have been following the work of various coaches, including Rich Litvin , who talked about this exact issue in one of his podcasts, where he said, Screw the elevator pitch. Inspired by his podcast, I would like to try a version of my non-elevator pitch here:
So what do you do for a living, dear Kerstin?
Funny you would ask.
What I do is what I believe in.
What I believe in is that our world is currently in a massive existential crisis that we, as humanity, will only survive if we respond to it - together - with completely new methods, systems, and worldviews.
I believe that this requires a love that the world has not yet seen, although this love is at the same time as old as the entire universe.
I believe that a whole new level of consciousness is needed.
And this shift in consciousness is exactly what I'm working on:
on the one hand, by supporting the formulation of this new worldview, narrative, or story (i.e., through my work with an American think tank - Center for World Philosophy and Religion )
on the other hand, by creating prepared spaces for connecting, developing, and co-creating in my FreiRaum GEO in various ways, so that we are all better equipped for this change, can thrive in it, and can make our very own unique contribution to it.
Crises as Chance - Who Am I?
Most people know me as
a woman with diverse talents, interests, and skill sets
an integrator who maintains an overview in complex situations and goes beyond apparent contradictions and integrates them
a companion who supports people in realizing their unique potential and
a visionary who likes to give herself completely to bold ideas and projects that serve the good of humanity and the planet
What only few people know is that I have lived through many deep crises, upheavals, and new starts myself. And in the end, I even moved through all the phases of burnout. And even that, ultimately, meant that I could continue to grow and develop my own potential.
Seeing crises as opportunities and drivers for development and evolution has long been my motto.
As a child, I learned, early on, that, in order to feel safe and loved, I had to meet or even exceed the expectations of people who were close to me. Today, I would refer to that as my false self building on my false core saying sentences like:
I am not enough.
I am helpless and insecure.
I am a burden to others.
I am ugly.
The gift of being this way was that I developed a kind of sixth sense for the feelings, expectations, and potentials of those around me. This sixth sense helps me a lot in my work with people today.
At the same time (as some kind of costs that go with this kind of being), I often didn't know where my own boundaries were, what really defines me, and how I can take good care of myself. Instead, I developed a kind of rescue complex early on.
And it took me a long time to realize in depth (not only cognitively, but in my Felt Sense available in every moment) that I was not really helping others, but that I was actually hurting myself. Because only when people really want to change themselves, and are willing to take responsibility for themselves, are they ready for their next step. No coaching or seminar can change that.
Over the course of various stages in my life, I have learned more and more about what is really essential to me and what is not. In doing so, I came closer and closer to my own authentic Unique Self (term and distinction from Dr. Marc Gafni). With all this, I have now learned in a new way to set clear boundaries and take good care of myself, because I now know, better than ever, who I really am and what belongs to me and what doesn't. And of course, that is an ongoing process that continues to deepen. For example, once I had overcome the immediate exhaustion of the burnout and I started to feel the pull of my own Unique Self to explore so many things, I was faced with a new challenge: How do I prioritize the things I am doing and committing to (that all feel joyful and important to me), without falling back into my old paradigm of what I have to do?
On my path, I got to know valuable methods, distinctions, and practices (along with wonderful people), which (and who) supported me and helped me not only to overcome burnout, but also to grow personally through all my crises.
My Sacred Wound
My deepest pain has always been the feeling of separation, of being split off from the source of all being, as well as the extreme polarization that often goes hand in hand with this split and often even leads to a demonization of those who do not share our own views. This pain often felt like a black hole in my solar plexus, a kind of deep, painful longing that - the way I felt it for a long time - could never be fulfilled.
Through my personal path of transformation and growth, this pain has been more and more transformed into my deepest heart's desire to heal the separation and brokenness in the world and to create a new wholeness, in which everything is integrated and nothing and no one is left out.
My deepest pain became a sacred wound, pointing to my deepest gifts that I want to share with the world - my gifts of integration, vision, and embodied love. As I share these gifts, my deepest pain turns into my greatest strength - my superpower.
With this, instead of losing myself in the pain and the void of separateness, I can dive deep into the world of Eros. Instead of losing myself in the feelings of the other person, I can embrace and perceive them, while at the same time being fully with myself. And instead of losing myself in my work, forgetting my authentic needs, I can take care of my needs and then be completely absorbed in my work (in the flow rather than in the void).
My sacred wound becomes my greatest treasure.
And that is the treasure I want to share with you.
I have played many roles in my life.
Sometimes, I am
a lecturer, trainer, or teacher
sometimes, a companion on the path, a consultant, a mentor, or a coach
sometimes, a project manager or executive director
sometimes, an editor, researcher, and author
and sometimes simply a friend
Always, I am someone who goes into the depths - the deep ends - to uncover the unique potential in people and in situations.
And in all of it, I am
an integrator and
an evolutionary mystic
What is your deepest pain? Your sacred wound?
What is your greatest longing? Your deepest heart's desire?
What are your superpowers? Your greatest gifts?
I would be happy to receive your answers in an email or a personal conversation.
Vision, Embodiment, and Love in Action:
Where Do You Know this in Your Life?
In my own life, these three aspects - vision, embodiment, and lived or embodied love in action (and authentic values) - have always played a role:
Even at school, I never understood why I was being asked whether I was more interested in languages and the humanities OR in the natural sciences. Why couldn't it be both? Early on, I saw connections where others only found opposites. And it was important to me to integrate everything into a coherent worldview. And early on, I had visions of how the world could be made a better place for everyone - a world that works for everyone.
So, it was only natural that I felt attracted to the Integral Theory of Ken Wilber, through which I finally, in 2011, at a conference of the Integrales Forum in Nuremberg, met Dr. Marc Gafni, with whom I have been working closely ever since, and his (constantly evolving) Unique Self Theory, Anthro-Ontology, and CosmoErotic Humanism (or Evolutionary Integral World Spirituality). Through that, I have been able to study and drink directly from the source.
When I was 12 years old, I wrote into my journal that I wanted to connect body, mind, and soul (which is what I am calling embodiment in these pages). At that time, it was through dancing. And when I began to dive into spirituality, it was clear for me that I needed to embody it. I didn't want to get out of the body into a better world of unity - although my default personality (or false self), at that time, had a strong inclination to do exactly that - but rather, I wanted to bring this experience of unity and love, which I was gifted to make, into this body and this world.
And finally, I have always longed to live love in all its forms concretely in everyday life and to experiment with new values-based ways of living and working together.
On the Path Together
More and more, I am really able to integrate all three aspects. And ultimately, I understood that this can only be done together with everyone who is on a similar path - no matter how different these paths may look on the outside. And - coincidentally - this has always been my deepest longing.
So, welcome - to this shared path - if you feel called to it.
“There is almost a sensual longing for communion with others who have a large vision. The immense fulfillment of friendship between those engaged in furthering the evolution of consciousness has a quality impossible to describe."
- Pierre Teilhard de Chardin