THE ALIVE PROGRAMS
The Alive program was originally developed by Hamish Sinclair in the 1980s, to work with perpetrators of domestic violence. Alive addresses violence at all levels of intensity and ways of manifesting; physical, emotional, mental, verbal, and sexual. It deals with the issues in a cycle of violence, for both the transgressor and for the survivor.
The Alive program is a structured tool to stop this cycle. It is a methodology to get a handle on what is inside each of us: to notice ourselves and then shift out of old patterns, habits, tendencies and come back to our authentic selves. This is the self that was there before the learned patterns. It’s a way to get out of our “stories” and connect with ourselves and with others.
The Alive programs specifically focus on our cultural beliefs about inferiority and superiority. The goal is to learn to “equalize” each person valuing the other. If I am in a belief that says either I am better or I am less-than; I am not believing we are equal.
Consent is a function of being equal. If I don’t know (in my body) I am “equal” with my partner, I am not able to negotiate or hold my boundaries with a strong, clear, centered voice.
“Stories” start with our internal belief systems, learned as children, and not chosen, not consensual, not conscious. If my reaction is a trigger, my “work”, is to do my best to stop and think and breathe and look at what happened inside of me. And when I “own” myself, then I can also easily notice the pieces that are not mine.
When someone gets triggered (they have a “Fatal Peril”) the Alive analysis considers four possible parts or roles: Perpetrator, Victim, Stepford and Rebel. All of them participate in perpetuating cycles of violating.
The Perpetrator is the Enforcer and Superior-Role.
The Victim is the one who is done to, powerless, no agency, the Inferior-Role.
The Stepford strives to keep the peace, placates, appeases, stuffs it, tries to create safety by avoiding conflict, the Perfectly-Cooperative-Role.
The Rebel fights back and reacts with significant force, anger, and rejection of anything that triggers old fears. The Fuck-You-Role.
The Alive program teaches us how to live as our own authentic selves. When you are a survivor, it works to strengthen your voice to speak your experience clearly and without violence. When you are a transgressor it is a tool to notice and stop patterns of Superiority. To make these big changes in ourselves is a lot of very hard work. We were all trained in this Superior/Inferior Belief System. This system of Superior/Inferior is at the root of the patriarchy, the colonizer model, class and race oppression.
In the sex positive community we have agreements to relate consensually. How can we do that when we are raised in a culture that teaches violence? It takes willingness, tools, practice, vulnerability and commitment to learn a different way to be in the world.
If you are interested in doing this work for yourself, the programs currently available are:
topsalive: Online via Zoom Sundays, 4 – 6 pm pst.
Contact Ms. WillowKat: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sign up or request more info: https://forms.gle/ih7zFCrpxAnTRqvx5
humanalive: In San Francisco, dedicated to persons in leather and BDSM lifestyles, tops or bottoms, transgressors or survivors, who want to do this work. (on-line Sunday 8-11am PST and San Francisco Mission District Tues. 7-9pm)
SF in person humanalive: Contact: email@example.com
onlinealive: If you have questions or want to sign up Contact firstname.lastname@example.org