UNLEARNING – what we need to grow up and develop


I met Simon in the “Conversational Experiments”, organised by Flemming Funch, an online group of interesting people trying to find better ways of coming together.

Simon came to see me in Paradiso Integrale and we had the unique chance to get to know each other live and in person, instead of “head only” on the computer screen. We passed a few days with interesting conversations, one of which we recorded for you and it is posted here.

I learned that Simon is originally from Sicily and went to Canada when he was 15. This enabled us to converse also in Italian, which gave Alessio, a young Italian man presently staying here at the Paradiso, the chance to enter into the conversation which was enriching for all of us.

We did  excursions to ancient Villages in Umbria and the area of Viterbo, places which you don’t necessarily know when you live in South Italy, but which are really beautiful and worthwhile to visit.

SImon and Alessio in Amelia


Simon brings forth the fact that in order to learn new things, you need to “unlearn” the old ones. He says that an accumulation, an addition of learning after learning is not enough, it can hinder us to learn something genuinely new. What you already know can only mixed and combined in different ways, seen from different perspectives, but it needs a “quantum leap” to really conceive something radically new.

Only if you “forget” what you have learned so far, you will be able to open yourself for true novelty. The process to do that is called UNLEARNING in the words of Simon and his mentors Martyn Carruthers and Kosjenka Muk. I might call it differently, I have done these processes in my life, but the name is not really important.

watch our live-and-in-person conversation where I try to clarify the concept of UNLEARNING by asking questions to Simon. You find the timestamps below where you see WHERE we were talking about WHAT in the video

0:00 Intro

0:55   Simon Starts to tell his history to get “unstuck” with “UNLEARNING”. He found interconnection among many famous people.

3:50 the freedom to use intuition, He thinks that we are in the midst of unlearning of who we think we are

4:50 UNLEARNING = not using the common ways of research, but let things speak for themselves to him

6:15 Heidi “the feminine way of doing research” as opposed to the masculine way.

8.00 intuition + examples: not assuming incorrectly but follow your intuition

13:00 learning on different levels, adjusting the perspectives

15:00 Realising the normal confusion with the help of Integral theory

18:10 Donna Eden, energy medicine

20:00 about Wilber and how he started his research and the way real science works.

22:30 Simon: “Everything is ok”. How Simon arrived there: experience.

26:03 How does your wife think about your adventures? – She wants him to meet Martyn Carruthers and Kosjenka Muk, “healers of healers” = all part of UNLEARNING, because he doesn’t push the things to happen and doesn’t wait for messages from the Universe, but is sensing what is the next thing to do.

30:00 About the “Conversational experiments” with Flemming Funch: I am the part of the past, where all the terrible things have happened. We have a connection with the past, it is all us, it is all ME and I have to take full responsibility for where we are here, now. No blaming anymore. This will change your life!

34:00 you have to do the homework, it will not happen overnight! I have to do some unlearning to gain different perspectives.

35:30 Heidi’s unlearning in her voice study.

36:25 Learning: you can enrich yourself, but you can never discover something really new as long as your learning is connected with your original assumptions.

40:40 Simon and Wilber put together, including deep religious understanding, not the silliness of the surface, not throwing anything out. You need to do your homework or trust certain authors, by also read between the lines.

42:40 the same principles arise in all disciplines, because we are all humans.