Thursday, January 6, 2011

Heal Trauma Internally

One of my all time favorite books about healing trauma is "Waking The Tiger" by Peter Levine. If you want to really begin understanding just how trauma affects the body and how we need to go within to heal it, this is an excellent book. All too often, we try to treat the symptoms that are left behind after the trauma has taken place. In all reality, if we do not go within to the source of the where we were impacted by the trauma, the effects will linger for years to come.

On Page 188, Peter states in "Waking The Tiger" that,

"Arousal becomes chronic as a result of overwhelming sensations and emotions that have an internal source. This is the reason that trauma can and must be transformed by working with it internally. In re-enactment the world may be our stage. In remaining external, it also remains unchanged. Hence, re-enactment rarely accomplishes its intended task.


There is definitely a place for the external work and dealing with the emotions and sensations that arise from points of trauma in our life. However, if we stay in this mode, we will be losing out on very deep healing that goes to the core connection of where the trauma impacted us. Just being in an experience where we release emotions is not necessarily an indicator that deep healing is taking place. Please do not get me wrong as I am not saying deep release cannot come from moments of emotional cleansing. What I am saying is that there is much more than these moments.

When we continue to ignore that which is within us and is trying to get our attention (the internal), we get into chronic situations with pain, anxiety, depression and other health conditions. Our experiences in life are dulled and lack meaning to carry us through our day. Our life feels hopeless, out of control and as if nothing is going to ever change. Senses in our body such as touch, taste, smell, feeling and connecting with others will become something we long for and hope for but struggle to obtain. It is in these moments that we are living on the external side of life apart from truly knowing who we are.

I believe from what I have experienced in my own life and observed in many other people, that true healing is when we stop, go within and sense all that is in our body. In no way will I sit here and tell you that this is an easy, pleasant journey but I will tell you that the awakening within that can take place by going deep inside one's self would amaze and surprise the greatest magician, the most creative person, or the biggest skeptic.

Awakening from within is the way we truly claim and recover the energy and power that we were born with. While we often attempt to take short cuts into this process, we will soon realize that anything but going within is an illusion. It may be our journey to simply understand that this happens but the moment the light bulb kicks on, our bodies become potential energy with the possibility greater than most men know.


Further Reading
Waking The Tiger By Peter Levine


Blog Post & Images (c) 1/4/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

1 comment:

  1. Qigong helped me beat four bouts of "terminal" bone lymphoma in the early nineties. It's also helped me manage the pain--physical and emotional--wrought by the cancer in the years since. Qigong also is an excellent stress reducer; after consistent practice life's "slings and arrows" bounce off one like pebbles plinking off a breastplate. Clear 14 years and still practicing every day!

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