By and large, we have to find our own way

rural roads

As individuals on the spiritual journey we may continually meet with steps not described by anyone else, for our journey is unique to us. It is inconceivable that all along we merely fit into the footsteps of those ahead; no one’s foot print will be a perfect match – we must be under no illusion in this matter. Our experiences and milestones will strike us as different. Sometimes we are lucky to even find any similarity, or enough to tell us we are still on the path. … [click on title to read and view more]

Rachel’s recovery from psychiatric labelling and unnecessary treatment

rai

After suffering abuse as a child Rachel began to hear voices while a teenager and went to a psychiatrist for help. Years of hospital and drug treatment followed. However Rachel only recovered once she rejected psychiatry and began to embrace her ‘symptoms’ as a meaningful response to childhood trauma. … [click on title to read more]

The normal modern human being

human

In the modern man, partly owing to his abnormal education during his preparatory age, and partly owing to influences due to certain causes of of the generally established abnormal conditions of modern life, the working of his psychic centres during his responsible age is almost entirely disconnected, therefore his intellectual, emotional and instinctive motor functions do not serve as a natural complement and corrective for one another, but, on the contrary, travel along different roads, which rarely meet and for this reason permit very little leisure for obtaining that, which in reality be understood by the word “consciousness”, wrongly used by modern people today. … [click on title to read more]

Nature vs nurture — Why biological psychiatry is so sorely misguided

nature

Genes are not deterministic. Epigenetics explains why. This is why theories on mental illness that try to blame genes are always over-simplified. Environment and what you eat and the amount of stress or trauma one lives with all are part of the picture. Everything matters.

The genetic and biological models allows the luxury of ignoring past and present social factors, says, Gabor Mate. He calls the genetic argument a cop out.… [click on title to read more]

The wonders of solitude

solitude

There is no species of training I ever underwent to which I owe more than to the habit of regular periods of inner solitude. Solitary we must be in life’s great hours of moral decision; solitary in pain and sorrow; solitary in old age and going forth to death. Fortunate the person who has learned what to do in solitude and brought himself to see what companionship he may discover in it – what fortitude, what content.

By a great blessing I had an aptitude for these hours of quiet reflection and grew to love them… To be alone and still and thoughtful bestowed upon me the richest joy I knew and for this priceless cultivation I shall be thankful always … [click on title to read more]

Healing can sometimes hurt

Healing

I’ve discovered that healing sometimes hurts…like when severe burns are healing it’s hell. It’s the same coming back from psych drug withdrawal syndrome, a sometimes grave and disabling iatrogenic injury. It can be a heinously awful experience. I’ve also learned that practicing surrender to that which is allows me to learn from the pain and the more I surrender the more the whole process actually makes sense. So, yes, now I intuitively know all sorts of things about healing and life and living and humanity and so I can profoundly trust what is happening most of the time even when I still feel shitty. It’s pretty darn cool. … [click on title to read and view more]

Altered states in meditation

path-with-heart

The third principle in working with altered states can be called Awareness of the Dance. When such experiences arise, the practitioner’s primary responsibility is to open to the experience with a full awareness, observing and sensing it as part of the dance of our human life.

We may become frightened by altered states, so that as they arise we resist and judge them: “My body is dissolving.” “I have prickles all over.” “I’m burning up.” “I’m too cold.” “The sounds are too loud.” “My senses are too intense.” “I cannot tolerate the many inner pains or waves of energy.” Through fear, aversion, and misunderstanding, we can struggle with them for a long time, trying to avoid them, change them, get through them, or make them go away, and this very resistance will keep us caught in them. … [click on title to read and view more]

Things we don’t talk about — Red tent: the film (for women)

red-tent

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I’m involved in my local Rent Tent group. I am finding deep healing among several largely non-professional groups in my community. My yoga community is one source, my ecstatic dance community is another, and women’s groups including the local Red Tent group is also bringing great light, joy and healing into my life.

There are ways to find healing communities that we ourselves create. Every human being can potentially create their own version and it may or may not look anything like mine or anyone else’s. I share some of the elements of mine, not so that it can be copied, but so that folks can start imagining how much more is out there besides the medical establishment that is failing so many.

Please, if what helps me doesn’t strike you as interesting or helpful, trust that your path may look completely different and still be just right. … [click on title to read and view more]

Between Heaven and Earth – Full Qigong Practice Session

qigong

Yesterday I did two posts on trauma and learning to heal from that through body practices. I talk about yoga and ecstatic dance in those posts. Qigong is another practice that can help profoundly.

I love that there is simply a huge multitude of methods to heal so that everyone can find what resonates and works for them personally. Of course that is a challenge for (some) professionals who always want to believe that what they have training in is what is appropriate for everyone. This is of course why the mental health system doesn’t work so well. I take great delight in the incredibly diverse healing body/mind.

I’ve been practicing Qigong from time to time lately and really love it too though I am very much a beginner still. It’s an incredibly powerful energy mover and so I do have to take it slow and carefully simply because it impacts the autonomic nervous system so profoundly and that is what is most impacted by the iatrogenic injury I’m healing from (psychiatric drug withdrawal syndrome). Psychiatric drug withdrawal syndrome is among other things also an incredibly traumatic event and therefore a lot of methods that help heal trauma also help heal this medically induced iatrogenic injury. … [click on title to read and view more]

The Perils of the Unlived Life

cracked earth

The experience of the unlived life correlates to what Joseph Campbell calls “the refusal of the call.” Life calls us to participate in its process of continuous becoming, the perpetual cycle of death and rebirth, and if we shy away from this calling we find ourselves, in Campbell’s words, “walled in boredom, hard work, or ‘culture.’” … [click on title to read and view more]

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