August 14, 2022
Trauma, Freeze, and Consent
It has been said that trauma is a thief. Whatever it was that happened, the worst of it often lies downstream. The events may have been horrific, in and of themselves, but trauma also steals from us our future and our self respect. Like interest on a maxed out credit card the effects of trauma are compounded daily. Especially when it happened early in life. As children we are usually considerably outmatched by our aggressors. The default stress response is to flee or to fight back. But when we are small this is usually not an option. Children facing violence, abuse, or violations of their boundaries and bodies have but one option: to survive it. A third stress response called Freeze takes over. Freeze is a shut down of all physical and emotional responses. It is akin to the opossum playing dead. The goal is to live. We go into shock, into paralysis, and then we dissociate, leaving our bodies to the circumstances at hand.
May 29, 2022
Live Interview with Christina Allen and the Shaman’s Directory
See a live 2 hour interview with the Shaman's Directory and Christina Allen on on walking the Andean paq'o path and using the Andean Healing arts to heal trauma, especially Freeze.
June 01, 2017
Beyond Talk Therapy
A psychological counselor can be an invaluable ally when we are sorting through our emotions and looking for ways to better cope with our wounds. It is comforting to have a neutral, anonymous person to talk to, and someone who can help us root through our stuff to get a better handle on it. Why then, would you see a shamanic healer? The short answer is, you still feel wounded. Counselors work mind to mind, using their minds to interact with yours. If the root of your problem is imprinted on your soul, talking about it has limited effect.
Shamans believe soul sickness is the origin of all mental and physical illness. They operate from the principle that your body and mind are connected to, and informed by, a third body of consciousness. It is a membrane of light that surrounds your physical body, perceiving the world independently of it. People who have technically died, but who have been brought back to life, report still being very aware of their surroundings, despite their complete loss of neural activity. They also report seeing the whole event from a position outside their body.
December 01, 2014
Catching A Tiger By Its Tail
In our conventional way of looking at illness, we see a symptom, like a sore throat or a tumor, and find various ways to treat it so it will go away. This is analogous to hacking off the tip of an iceberg and expecting that it will disappeared because the tip is no longer visible. All we have really done is treat the physical manifestation of something that is much more complicated brewing beneath the surface.
Treating a symptom and having it disappear is considered a cure, it is the cornerstone of allopathic medicine. We have found numerous cures for many horrible diseases in the last 100 years. A drug, for example, can make part of the brain work more efficiently or kill off cells that divide and grow too quickly. A knife can remove a part of the body that is sickened and diseased. Cures work at the physical, on the physical, molecule to molecule. While cures are beneficial on one level, the problem is that they introduce physical change into complex systems with a cascade of related moving parts. To alter one part of the whole often changes others down stream. Removing a sick organ, for example, can create space in the body that destabilizes the location of others, or changing levels of serotonin to decrease depression can cause erratic sleep patterns and sexual disfunction.