09 Sep No Time Like Now to Heal

Current events in 2017 bring me back to the day after 9/11 when I sat in a packed concert hall at the University of Virginia.  The administration had set up an open mike event where all members of the campus to share their thoughts and feelings about what had happened.  I, like many others, stepped onto stage to speak about my grief and to call for everyone to seek healing not only of the wounds incurred by the previous day's events, but of their own personal wounds from betrayal, loss, abuse, and violence. When I went back to my seat, I suddenly felt a great opening in my consciousness and I heard these words: "You, like thousands upon thousands of others worldwide have been prepared for this time. The pathways for change are opening.  All of you will take the lead in bringing a new world into being." If you are reading this blog, you are one of these people. What does it mean that you have been prepared for this time? It means that your journey to expand and deepen your spirituality and to heal the wounds you carry are directly contributing to a worldwide movement to transform the mind of dominion and power over into mind of reconciliation, collaboration and love. You have recognized that the planet is in your heart, and you yourself are the very heart of the planet.  You have recognized that by  unwinding the old patterns in your life of lack, limitation, scarcity and fear, you are contributing to expanding the resonant field of peace in the world. You can do this on your own and in community. Energy healing done hand-in-hand with ceremonies of the heart in caring community can exponentially expand, speed up and deep not only your own transformation, but the transformation of the world. With the suffering mind of ignorance, hatred, and fear appearing in ever more stark relief now, this is a critical calling to heal the world. I am reaching out even more to invite you to join me in ceremony and community to heal the wounds wrought by mind of dominion and power over and to dream a greater vision of healing, reconciliation, and love for the world to come. Read more below for my thoughts on how recent events point to unhealed ancestral wounds within individuals and the collective and how ceremonies of healing, reconciliation, and love will penetrate this dark veil of illusion.
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28 Aug Make No Enemies: Only Love

I live in Charlottesville, VA.  On Saturday, August 11, the date of the white supremacist rally here, I was in South Dakota visiting my stepsister and supporting the sacred Lakota Sundance ceremonies.  On that afternoon, a friend in Chicago texted me and asked if I was aware of events unfolding violence in my hometown.  I looked at the newspaper on my Android. What I saw shocked me. I was filled with grief, anger, and confusion.  As so many of us were and still are. Nevertheless, over the following two weeks, I took my time to provide a response to ensure that I was not speaking out of despair, anger or hatred. Oh, yes, I have felt these emotions upon contemplating the beliefs and actions of the individuals who gathered in Charlottesville to promulgate hatred and division and the ideologies of white supremacism. I have been shaken, much as I was shaken on 9/11 as I watched the Twin Towers falling live on television.  During the week I was in South Dakota, as I cooked and conversed with new friends, both Native and white, I also heard many hard stories of injustice and violence, particularly against the Water Protectors of Standing Rock.  My heart was already aching when events in my hometown went down. So it was that I watched myself navigating through the chaos of three airports on my way  home, and feeling suspicious and afraid whenever my eyes fell on a red-faced white man. Could he be a white supremacist? Oh, yes, I thought to myself: this is how enemies begin to be made in our hearts and minds.  Harm is done by a few individuals and the seeds of fear begin to be sown and the roots of stereotypes begin to grow. Here I see in myself the same causes and conditions which perpetuate cycles of violence and hatred. I know better.  I know how how the mind can trick me.  Stereoptypes are always incorrect.  I also know that hatred does not help. It only adds fuel to the fire.  Fear leaves us vulnerable. Anger eats away at our basic human birthright to happiness. Despair is paralyzing. All of it kills peace, caring, hope, optimism, and love.  And when these eternally positive qualities are suppressed, the mind of domination of one over the other all too easily takes over. And, yet, like most of us, my heart is broken.  And like most of us, I want all of this to finally, finally bring to an end the destructive power of hatred.  To using violence as the first response to conflict. To ending the idea that power over is necessary to ensure safety and security. To finding a way to create a world of caring, kindness and love. So, where do we go from here? How am I working with my own anger and fear? How am I dismantling this inner movement towards enemy-making?
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07 Oct Shamanic Energy Medicine for Treating Trauma and Other Contemporary Afflictions, Part 3: Rings of Consciousness, Shamanic Journeying and Multigenerational Imprints on Consciousness

In this third blog of the series on Shamanic Energy Medicine for Treating Trauma and Other Contemporary Afflictions, I go more deeply into the perspectives behind and tools used for working with clients presenting with symptoms of PTSD, depression or anxiety.  This builds upon the second blog in which I...

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06 Aug Shamanic Energy Medicine for Treating Trauma and Other Contemporary Afflictions, Part 1: Keeping an Open Mind

This is the first blog in a series called Shamanic Energy Medicine for Treating Trauma and Other Contemporary Afflictions in which I seek to make contemporary western shamanic energy medicine relevant and understandable to practitioners in mainstream clinical psychology, psychotherapy, medicine, and science.  In this first blog, I provide a brief overview of what shamanic energy medicine is and how it can be applied. One day many months ago, I was cleaning my house and listening to a radio program on the problem of post-partum depression in women.  The researcher being interviewed had done a study of a large group of women who had experienced depression and more mental and emotional imbalances following the birth of their child.  These were women who otherwise had been happy to become mothers, loved their babies, and prior to their pregnancy and birth, had never had any serious problems of a psychological nature. One of the women told the researcher that a few months after the birth of her beloved daughter child, she suddenly started to have compulsive and horrible images of killing her daughter.  They would appear unexpectedly, such as one time when she was standing looking from bleachers down into a skating rink.  She suddenly had an image of throwing her daughter onto the ice and killing her.  Eventually, she told a social worker who referred her to therapy. She also was prescribed anti-depressants.  The researcher commented that she would need monitoring and support from drugs. I stopped vacuuming and said aloud to the room: "She needs a shamanic energy medicine session!"  I knew that in a single session, these disturbing images and feelings could be banished without long-term talk and drug therapy.  Hearing her story made me resolve to find a way to  make shamanic energy medicine and ceremony relevant to contemporary medicine, psychology, and recovery from trauma. I want to reach out to readers who are themselves practitioners in alternative and mainstream medical and therapeutic practice and who are interested in new and alternative ways to address various physical, emotional and spiritual illnesses and imbalances.  I believe there is a role for this contemporary therapeutic movement particularly in the treatment of trauma. This will be the first blog in a series on the topic.  
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06 Aug Shamanic Energy Medicine for Treating Trauma and Other Contemporary Afflictions, Part 2: The Science of Transgenerational Trauma

In my blog entitled "Dreaming Violence into Peace, Part 1", I shared that I had recently had a series of violent dreams which seemed to presage the beheading of the American journalist, James Foley in August, 2014.  That series is a call to all of us to understand how deeply we are impacted by violence and to dream together a new vision of peace--even if our immediate lives lack direct conflict.  This blog is also relevant to Dreaming Violence into Peace, but extends the topic to be useful in particular to clinical and medical practitioners working who wish to understand the impact of transgenerational legacies of trauma from the perspective of shamanic energy medicine.  In the first blog of this series, Shamanic Energy Medicine for Treating Trauma and Other Contemporary Afflictions, Part 1: Keeping an Open Mind, I provide some basic definitions and introductions to shamanic energy medicine and energy healing, in general.  In this blog, Part 2, I discuss contemporary scientific perspectives on transgenerational transmission of trauma, behavior, environment, and epigenetics. 
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