FROM ETHICS TO PRACTICE (EXCERPTS FROM CONFERENCES WITH IDRIS LAHORE)
In his relationship to his client, the mediator’s first and foremost duty is to be at his own best possible level. This duty is ethical, since it is what permits him to be as useful and effective as possible at the service of his client. The client deserves more than a mediator who is using only 50% of his capacities and potential; he deserves a mediator who is working at his best possible level, and this forms part of the implicit contract between the mediator and client.
If the mediator is in a euphonic state, in other words a state of inner harmony and equilibrium, and if he is on top of his knowledge and practical expertise, then he meets this ethical demand.
Being “at our best possible level” does not mean we compare ourselves to other mediators or colleagues, but that we are sure to be in the best possible state of equilibrium and knowledge in relation to ourselves. This implies that:
• The mediator applies himself the techniques he proposes to his clients;
• He keeps himself informed at all times about the evolution of the field;
• He ensures that he is supervised regularly in order to avoid the risk of introducing deviations that are harmful to his client.
As soon as he notices that he has lost this state of equilibrium, he finds a way of regaining it; this is his moral duty toward his client, in both the individual and group sessions. A mediator in a state of disequilibrium subtly transmits this disequilibrium to his client and the group as a whole.
The fact that the mediator has relational or health problems, or problems of any other kind, particularly in the context of his own private life, is part of the normal current of human existence. Nonetheless, his ethical commitment toward his client implies that he has learned to disengage himself from his personal difficulties in order to be at his best possible level at the service of his client. This sometimes calls for personal assistance from the mediator’s supervisor, or from another mediator or practitioner.
In summary, during a consultation, discussion, or work with a group, the first priority to which the mediator must be attentive is his own state, since this state conditions the quality of his work with the client.
A lack of emotional maturity and lack of work on oneself, in other words a lack of personal practice, prevent the realisation of a euphonic state, firstly for the practitioner himself, secondly between the practitioner and the client, and finally for the client and his entire system.