When a Moment Changes your Life: An Interview with Paul Rubin

Ira Feinstein: When you first heard about “Feldenkrais,” was it the man or the Method?

Paul Rubin: I met the man. I had no idea who he was.

IF: How did you meet Moshe?

PR: In 1973, I was at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California. I was 24 years old and was running a school for troubled adolescents on a grant from the government of Canada's Department of Health and Welfare. Summers were free. My funders offered to pay my way to a four-week residential seminar in Gestalt Therapy. One night, Moshe Feldenkrais and Ida Rolf came to dinner. Feldenkrais was interested in Gestalt Therapy as something perhaps compatible with the principles of his own thinking as a form of exploration of what he called the “feeling” element of life. We had a conversation in the kitchen and spoke again later when I was asked to drive him to where he was staying.

IF: Did he tell you anything about the Method?

PR: No. After observing the Gestalt session during which I was the subject, he was mostly interested in asking me questions about Gestalt Therapy and about me. He was quite curious. I was impressed by how intently he listened and how open and even eager he was to hear from someone so much his junior. That quality of paying attention alone taught me something.

Click here to read the entire interview.