Dick McHugh came to India in 1951 from a college in the US to do volunteer work – and he has stayed on and on and on…learning Hindi, philosophy, theology, even serving as the headmaster of St.Xavier’s Hindi Medium School (“Oh boy!!??? – as Dick would say) at Lupungtu, Chaibasa for almost a decade. The “awareness??? paradigm, which he imbibed – from Vipassana training, his long association with his beloved friend Fr.Anthony D’Mello SJ and NLP training – is what Dick teaches and equips you with through all his workshops. To be fully aware of all what goes on within you and around you. To not ignore any of your pains or negative feelings but to be aware of them, to embrace them and accept them as part of you. This is when one feels truly empowered – more empowered than any therapist or medication can make you.Just as he doesn’t complain about anything, the master won’t let you complain either, in his presence. He will quickly ask you to find the “positive intention??? behind anything that you are complaining about or ask – “What is it that is troubling you now? Be in the here and now!??? Sometimes he will simply look through you as though he is too dumb to comprehend what you are saying – by then you would rather comprehend your folly than suffer the gaze. At all such times, you might feel like you want to wring his neck, but at 6 foot something, not many will be able to reach his neck. So you grin and bear Dick McHugh – the teacher – the master – Rabboni – terms, many whose lives he has touched would love to shower on him.
He started studying NLP in 1980 and he often says that it was NLP that taught him how to face reality and look for answers within himself. In fact this is the essence and soul of Dick’s work. This is what Dick in turn teaches you in every single workshop of his. To integrate within yourselves all the various experiences you’ve had through life and living, to accept yourself so completely, that you have no need to look for love and acceptance elsewhere. Pearl Buck once said “Inside myself is a place where I live alone, and that’s where I renew my springs that never dry up.??? When you apply what Dick teaches you, to integrate, to accept, to seek within, to be aware of your aloneness and yet enjoy the company of people, to live well in the world but not of it; it is then that you find springs that never dry up and that’s what Dick wholeheartedly wishes for each one of his students.
Many of his students want to model him, be like him. As someone rightly said, if you meet him once, you can’t help but follow him. Wow! Now that’s a sign of a life well lived – with so many different facets to his personality, could this be what Christ meant when he gave the parable of the talents? When He said “To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have in abundance. But from those who are unfaithful, even what little they have will be taken away.??? Don’t we at times wonder, why people like Dick McHugh and Bill Gates have such an abundance of resources? In my mind this is the answer – they use and share what they have been given, to the best of their ability and potential, for the benefit of others.