By Paul Woodward When I was a Buddhist monk and the Dalai Lama visited us in France, there was a meeting of most of the Western monks and nuns in our community. At that time, the majority were living in a monastery and neighboring nunnery near Toulouse, but others were visiting from elsewhere in Europe,… Continue Reading →

Healing is relationship, healing is radical community building

For now our society remains seriously disconnected. Trauma is a symptom of disconnection. Psychiatry too often ignores trauma because, it, too, is disconnected. We don’t know how to take care of one another and therefore we don’t know how to take care of ourselves. We get this from our parents and we pass it on if we don’t become conscious. Healing requires learning how to do these things as a species not just as individuals. In the end healing is radical community building. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

Community is people

Community means caring: caring for people. Dietrich Bonhoeffer says: ‘He who loves community destroys community: he who loves the brethren builds community.’ A community is not an abstract ideal. We are not striving for perfect community.

Community is not an ideal: it is people. It is you and I. In community we are called to love people just as they are with their wounds and their gifts, not as we would want them to be. Community means giving them space, helping them to grow. It means also receiving from them so that we too can grow. It is giving each their freedom; it is giving each other trust; it is confirming but also challenging each other. We give dignity to each other by the way we listen to each other, in a spirit of trust and of dying to oneself so that the other may live, grow, and give. … [click on title to read and view more]

Asheville Community Yoga: my partners in healing

I’m sharing info about this yoga studio for multiple reasons really. I’m happy and honored to raise their profile on the internet so as to help support them. They are truly in service to the community and so I too want to give back. Also, it would be lovely to see such studios opening up all over the country and the world. I hope that this post might plant seeds so that this sort of vision can be replicated elsewhere. So many yoga studios don’t seem to have the true spirit of yoga. Yoga has become a part of popular and hip culture, so that in some circles the yoga as lifestyle and philosophy gets lost. We need more yoga studios that are, as this one is, deeply in service to the community.

Number two is that the folks in the video talking about how yoga and the community there at Asheville Community Yoga are real people talking about their real experiences. I, too, have found that being part of that particular community and practicing yoga regularly, both, has radically helped support my healing process.

Three, I want to again, talk about how yoga has helped me in my life, in general. It literally raised me from my bed, where I had been bedridden for 2 years. My muscles were completely atrophied. I started with leg and arm lifts and turning my feet and hands in circles. Serious baby steps. And now I can do all sorts of stuff. … [click on title to read and view more]

Community Rights Movement: ending forced psychiatry from the ground up

Beginning in Pennsylvania, and now stretching across nine states from Maine to New Mexico, 160 communities have passed legally binding, locally enforceable Community Rights laws that for the first time in U.S. history enshrine the inherent right of a local majority of residents to protect the health and welfare of their local places. Each of these new-paradigm laws defines what the community wants, and reins in corporate so-called “rights”, stopping legal but harmful practices dead in their tracks. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

The psychotherapeutic community needs to tolerate diversity, dissonance, divergence

One of my favorite therapist tweeters did a string of tweets I just had to share yesterday.

And that’s right “everybody” does not need therapy, in direct contradiction to that party phrase.

There are as many healing paths are their are individuals. And every person ideally finds a combination of things that work for them. Because we’re profoundly varied as well as holistic beings and everything matters. … [click on title to read the rest]

Tonight in Asheville: Dan Fisher MD at a community event will share his personal story

Dan Fisher, MD, PhD, is the executive director of the federally funded National Empowerment Center in Massachusetts and helped lead the White House’s first Commission on Mental Health. He is an advisor for the White House’s National Dialogues on Mental Health initiative. Diagnosed with schizophrenia and hospitalized several times as a young man, Dr. Fisher is one of the few psychiatrists in the country who speaks openly about his recovery from a severe mental illness diagnosis. He travels the world extensively conducting public health workshops, community dialogues, and mental health recovery conferences… [click on title to read more]

Community Mental Health in Times of Crisis

By Faith Rhyne
Often, for service users, in many ways the mental health system is simply an inaccessible insult, with scant appointments, callous and fatigued providers, and treatments that seem to cause more problems than they solve.

While many have been helped by various individuals within the mental health system, people who went above and beyond their role as “staff” and approached their work with a genuine commitment to humanity; the mental health system has tragically failed a great many more, often in ways resulting in desperation, diminished potential, alienation and, all too frequently, untimely and avoidable death, often by suicide. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

Providing sanctuary (alternative to hospitalization in community)

In these days with limited access to mental health facilities, and when in-patient or out patient treatment might be focused on invasive treatments and not on recovery, you may be tempted to “provide sanctuary” for a friend or family member who is experiencing serious mental health challenges. Many of you have probably already done this. … [click on title for the rest of the post

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