'The Guru Next Door' is a well-written and riveting tale of self-discovery. It weaves a personal story of pain and learning with the greater teaching…[ Valerie Gilbert, NYC ] >
A Message from Wendy.
Hello, and welcome to Dialogues in Self Discovery Center for The Option Method. My name is Wendy Dolber and I am the creator of DSD and Director of The Center. I am one of the first Option Method Teachers trained by Bruce Di Marsico. Bruce passed along powerful and life-changing insights to his students about the nature of unhappiness and happiness. His goal was to create a method that would empower each individual to be free from the suffering that is caused by beliefs that are at the heart of all unhappiness. His wish was that each of his students would embrace the teachings of The Method and pass them along to others. That is my goal is creating DSD and The Center.
As a result of my close association with Bruce for over twenty-five years, I have the expertise and understanding of The Option Method that is rare in the world today. Option Method has been part of my life for almost forty years, since I first met Bruce in the early 70’s. From the very first lecture, I was completely enraptured with the man and his teachings. At the time, I was in my early 20’s, planning on becoming a psychotherapist and looking for a methodology. I knew that I wanted to help people with their problems but I had no idea what that really meant. I was looking for something that worked to help people to stop feeling bad. I wanted to be effective. I didn’t know it at the time, but I also wanted to be a happier person and free myself of self-imposed restrictions of my past.
Listening to Bruce in those early days brought everything into focus. As I heard him talk about the nature of unhappiness, the complexity of human, emotional experience began to unravel for me. I began to see the world with different eyes and ears – to see the cause and effect of happiness and unhappiness in a completely different way. It immediately changed my perspective and opened the door to peace, happiness and understanding in my life that I never dreamed possible.
Embracing Option Method has provided me with a world view based on personal responsibility for my own feelings, a non-judgmental approach to life and revealing of the truth that unhappiness does not just happen to us – it is the result of our beliefs. As a result, I became a happy person with a rock-solid sense of who I am and what I want. Bruce always said that “happiness is everything” and “nothing can make us unhappy.” That focus underlies the brilliance of The Option Method, a seemingly simple tool that can get to the root of the problems that so many experience every day. I have always felt that The Option Method afforded me everything I needed to be the person I love to be, no matter what life throws my way and no matter how unhappy I had been in the past. I consider myself extremely lucky to have met Bruce when I did and experienced his teachings for so many years. My ability to practice Option Method for myself and teach others is the centerpiece of my life – my most precious resource. It’s my joy and privilege to pass that knowledge along to you so that you can pass it along to others, and so on and so on.
Bruce taught Option Method to therapists, clergy, social workers, teachers, counselors, lay practitioners, as well as individuals for personal use. He didn’t believe that professional credentials were necessary to practice, only study and experience in The Method itself. I love that way of thinking. Option Method is essentially a different way of talking to yourself and others about your unhappiness. To restrict it to the realm of “therapy” or “counseling” is not only misleading, but hampers its growth as a personal growth and development tool that anyone can use. For that reason, I decided early on to put my energy into interpreting Bruce’s work and practicing and teaching Option Method, not as a “therapist” of any kind, but as someone who simply wants to help others to be happier.
Our approach to teaching follows the example of Bruce Di Marsico’s teachings in content and structure. Bruce offered a wealth of information on The Option Method to his students, but in doing so he made a very important point: “the simplest understanding is the best understanding”. Although he was a prolific writer and lectured extensively, he observed frequently that to learn more about The Option Method and its application was not to learn it better. The idea that the simplest understanding is the best is the recognition that once the fundamental truth of The Option Method is presented, each individual has what is needed to proceed to ever-deepening understanding as they practice and teach The Method. The deepest and most abiding changes occur in our own practice of The Method. Our goal and pledge to you is that we will teach what is needed to help you achieve the simplest and best understanding and support you in your quest for deeper understanding and sheer enjoyment of what you have learned.
I founded The Center as the central place of learning for The Option Method dedicated to the teachings of Bruce Di Marsico. The Center provides Option Method consultation and training for personal and professional use and functions as a community for Option Method students and teachers. Our commitment is to provide training in The Option Method by a core group of highly experienced Master Teachers trained directly by Bruce Di Marsico. Deborah Mendel, Bruce’s widow, is one of our Master Teachers, and approves all the programs and content on this site. Individuals successfully completing our Registered Option Method Teacher and Master Teacher requirements will be listed in the Center’s Option Method Teacher Registry.
When Bruce died in 1995, we were presented with an opportunity to embrace Option Method in a new way. Bruce wrote thousands of pages on The Method, including two handbooks, but published his works only for his students. He trained thousands of people, taught and lectured widely, but preferred to work in the background. With the publication of his works, as well as archival material located at http://www.choosehappiness.net, those who have never met Bruce have an opportunity to hear and read his words. Our job at The Center is to provide a format and context to help people navigate though the essential elements of these voluminous teachings with the goal of mastering the centerpiece of The Option Method, The Option Method Dialogue.
Many of Bruce’s students have created very successful endeavors teaching Option Method in one form or another. While The Center is not affiliated with any of these endeavors, we celebrate all practitioners of Option Method around the world! Any teaching of The Option Method makes the world a better place. My wish, as a recipient of this priceless legacy directly from Bruce Di Marsico, is to present his teachings as they were imparted to me. By providing standardized training and a registry of teachers, my colleagues and I hope to provide the public with the invaluable resource of this powerful tool for happiness created by this extraordinary man.
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Compassion is the bottom line in The Option Method. That’s the absolute requirement and if you…
Compassion is the bottom line in The Option Method. That’s the absolute requirement and if you ever want to learn to do it for yourself, you’ve got to be at least as nice to you as you would be to others. You’ve got to know when you’re ready to deal with something and when you’re not. And you’ve got to know when you don’t want to question your unhappiness and when you’d be glad to. When you get unhappy enough you’ll be glad to.[ Bruce Di Marsico ]