After the exuberance of summer fall comes along inviting us to go inwards and become more introspective. It’s a perfect time to take a deep look at our underlying emotional issues and let them go. The link between body and mind has been vastly researched; we know now that the things we hold on from our past can affect our health. By releasing them we make a contribution to our wellness.
Kat Duff in her book “The Alchemy of Illness” says that at the bottom of all serious conditions lies a deep sorrow; it could be for the loss of a marriage, a premature death, the departure of a loved one, or lost opportunities. How we process this sorrow either bounds us to life or literally pulls us into the grave.
Japanese alternative oncologist Dr. Tsuneo Kobayashi believes that suppressed emotions damage the mitochondria and are a contributing factor to the development of cancer.
An area worth exploring is what psychotherapist Francis Weller calls the second gate of sorrow; here we find the places in ourselves that were not reached by love. Not necessarily because we had a traumatic childhood, it may be just that they were not given proper attention. As a child, in the attempt to belong to the world of adults we bury the aspects of our personality that we find make us “unacceptable “in their eyes, it could be joy, sadness, sensuality, needs… These places get wrapped in shame and hidden in the deepest areas of the self so nobody can see them. Sometimes they are difficult to access and we may need help to reach them. Modalities that engage the body like yoga, acupuncture, Rolfing, Feldenkrais, and EMDR have proven very effective to bring to the surface what we can’t reach on our own.
It is important to look into the shadow of our life and see what is there. Whoever lives there makes us pull back from the world and prevents us from manifesting who we are. Not until we can welcome all the pieces of our soul that were hidden in exile can we live life fully.
Francis Weller, The Wild Edge of Sorrow
Kelly A. Turner, Ph.D., Radical Remission
Bessel Van der Kolk, Restoring the Body: Yoga, EMDR and Treating Trauma www.onbeing.org