Tag Archives: Shamanism

The Unlimited Potential Of The Human Being: 4 Healing Stories

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According to ancient spiritual teachings, souls incarnating as human beings are granted individual destinies on Earth, giving us each the opportunity to express our innate wisdom, love, creativity and power in this physical world. Having a history of previous incarnations on this planet, each of us are also born into a particular set of karmic relationships and fated experiences based on choices made in prior lifetimes or based on lessons that we wanted to learn this time around.

We can think of destiny as one’s highest potential or divine plan – a seed of potential that the universe plants within us at the time of conception. We nourish our destinies when we make the most of the talents and opportunities that are designed into our individual human plan and when we are able to navigate our karmic experiences or fate, as alchemists – by allowing these challenges to transform and evolve us instead of crush us.

Another way to think about it, is to visualize fate as a structure or a trellis. The plant has the freedom to grow up and through and around the trellis in different ways, and it has the freedom to only grow so high or to grow all the way up to the top and beyond (destiny). Within the structure of fate, we make choices, and those choices either nourish our destiny or they don’t.

Here in this physical realm, there are many distractions that occupy our attention, efforts and energy. With infinite patience the universe allows us to manage our lives using our free will. Occasionally, because of certain fated events, our lives are interrupted, usually by a major personal loss or health crisis. Often, it is only in our darkest hours, that we remember to ask the important questions: Who am I…why am I here…and what am I doing about it? 1

These extremely trying and confusing experiences, although rooted in fate, also serve as potential catalysts to our higher destinies. They are opportunities to temporarily withdraw from the fast pace of our lives to develop a deeper awareness of another reality beyond the physical world and a higher purpose for being here on this planet. When I was confronted with a serious health crisis that was unresponsive to both conventional and alternative medicine (including acupuncture, which was my profession at the time), I was forced to re-evaluate my path and find the deeper purpose in this shocking curve-ball from the universe. After exhausting many treatment modalities with no progress, I began to research the fields of psychic healing, shamanism and parapsychology. I discovered fascinating examples of individuals who faced intensely painful and frightening physical challenges with an open mind and a determined spirit. They allowed these devastating twists of fate to awaken their creativity and found themselves transformed, empowered and healed as they realized so much more about their true potential.

Several incredible healing stories which all involved serious damage to the leg, especially caught my attention, because the neuro-muscular function of my own leg was severely affected by a condition diagnosed as reflex sympathetic dystrophy. The pain and dysfunction was spreading and had caused one of my calf muscles to become paralyzed. The first story I came across was reported in Psychology Today and Yoga Journal. It was about a 21 year old man named Mitchell May, who was told by a team of UCLA surgeons that his leg was unsalvageable and must be amputated. During a head-on auto collision, May’s leg had been broken in 40 places and large chunks of muscle and skin were missing. His leg was deeply infected, his life was at risk and the doctors insisted that he would never walk on two legs again. May couldn’t imagine a life without his leg and refused to let the surgeons amputate. His mother contacted the parapsychology department at UCLA in a desperate attempt to find some other option and was put in touch with a healer named Jack Gray.  

© Alan SyncBookPress

Kabbalah – Tree of Life © Alan SyncBookPress

Jack Gray was raised in the Jewish mystical tradition known as Kabbalah, and used energy healing, hypnosis, chanting and prayer to perform countless healings that were being researched at UCLA. He visited May in his hospital room daily for an entire year, performing energy healing on him and teaching him to enter altered states of consciousness through meditation and hypnosis. He taught May to direct energy through his body, to use active visualization, to leave his body consciously and to turn pain signals off with his mind. He also helped May to alter his belief systems that were causing blocks to his healing. He used techniques that drew upon “etheric forces” to generate matter in the form of new healthy muscle, nerve and bone tissue in May’s leg.2 This regeneration of tissue, considered impossible by western science, was fully documented by X-rays and consulting medical physicians.3

After two years, May was able to walk again with a brace. He became Jack Gray’s apprentice, continued to learn and heal and eventually returned to hiking, dancing and rock climbing. In an interview for Yoga Journal, May described how this health crisis led him through a spiritual transformation as he explored a realm beyond regular physical perception. “We would work for hours on end in expanded states of consciousness… Jack exposed me to a field of energy that will almost burn you up if you don’t change. He had to teach me to deal with my fears, my ego games, so that I could enter that energy field.”4 Jack asked May to carry on his teachings when he passed. With a deeply personal experience of the mysterious and extraordinary potential of the human being, Mitchell May walked forward into his higher destiny as a healer and teacher, helping thousands to expand their awareness and access their true healing potential, while creating more joy and freedom in their lives.

Not long after I read Mitchell May’s story, my chiropractor told me about a highly respected shaman who was visiting from South Africa, named Dominique. She had a very busy schedule, was flying back home that Sunday, and I was unable to get in to see her. I went to bed that Saturday night feeling sad that I had missed the opportunity. Early the next morning, I woke up to my phone ringing. When I answered, there was a woman with a South African accent asking for me. She said “This is Dominique, I woke up this morning thinking that I was not going to see any clients before I fly home today, but your guides are here telling me otherwise. Can you get here soon?”

I arrived at the house where she was staying and found her in the front yard garden. She was a very healthy, beautiful woman in her late 40’s or early 50’s. She brought me into the house and began to tell me very specific details about my personal life and my past that she had no way of knowing. She spoke of my guides in the spirit world and how they wanted me to understand that this health crisis was a blessing, that I would not have reached the goals that I had planned for this incarnation if I had continued on my path without it. She said that in the future, I would be writing. I asked her “about what?” She answered “It feels like you have a different way of doing things or a different way of thinking about things, you will be bringing through juicy information.” She noticed the expression of disbelief on my face, looked into my eyes very seriously and said, “You will be doing this. It may not be for several years, but you will be doing this.” Then she added, “Once you are able to shift your perspective, and see this deviation from your path as a blessing, rather than a curse, you will walk again without pain.” On my way home, I thought over every word she had spoken. I felt gratitude for her and for these “guides” who apparently had been observing the ups and downs of my life and were very interested in helping me navigate it all, but I still had no idea what I could possibly be writing about in the future. I didn’t like to write, I found it laborious…and I had no idea what this “juicy information” could be, but I was intrigued and I had a stronger sense of hope.

Motivated by my session with Dominique and by Mitchell May’s inspiring story, I committed to a daily self-hypnosis and meditation practice. Several months into this routine, I began to experience shifts in my awareness of my own nature. While meditating, my consciousness would temporarily exit the state of fear and hopelessness that I had become accustomed to during my health crisis, and expand into a realm where I felt absolute peace, contentment and a sense of the vast, powerful and eternal nature of my soul. At this stage of my path, a holistic practitioner who had studied under Hawaiian medicine women was explaining to me the concept of “shamanic soul retrieval” and spoke the right words to me at just the right time. She said, “The medicine women told me that every part of your body has its own consciousness or its own soul, even the little finger.” The idea suddenly occurred to me to experiment while in a deep state of meditation, by talking to my leg as if it were its own being, with its own consciousness who could hear and understand me.

That same night, after shifting into an altered meditative state, I began my first conversation with my leg, as described in my previous article, Your Cells Are Listening, How Talking to Your Body Can Help You Heal. After about one hour of this focused communication, tissues suddenly and boldly began to move and glide under my skin, peeling apart layers of scar tissue. Nerves vigorously fired through the area, ordering my calf muscles to respond with flexion and extension exercises. Strong waves of energy that felt raw and primal rushed through my body – something I had never felt before. Lying there in my bed, stunned and mesmerized by these sensations and physical reactions, I fully surrendered to the experience. This process carried on for what seemed like more than 2 hours. I began to feel tired and hungry. I took a deep and reverent breath before standing up, anticipating what it would feel like to walk on this newly reorganized leg. As I walked to the kitchen, the function and strength of my calf muscle was dramatically improved. After a series of these conversations, I was able to completely restore normal function to my leg. From the first moment this raw, creative, healing force awakened within my body, I thought of Dominique and what she had told me. I knew that I would be sharing this story with others who were ready to realize their own innate healing abilities. I continued to explore the fascinating realm of deep meditation and eventually shifted my professional focus to hypnotherapy and meditation instruction.

Recently, I came across another amazing healing story on Huffington Post. The article stated that Phakyab Rinpoche, a high ranking Tibetan Buddhist lama, had developed gangrene in his leg while imprisoned in China for his religious beliefs. He eventually escaped to India, then emigrated to the United States. Orthopedic surgeons in New York City told him that the infection was too severe and his leg must be amputated. Rinpoche asked his mentor, the current Dalai Lama for guidance before going forward. The Dalai Lama instructed him to reject the surgeons advice and instead practice the tsa lung form of meditation he had learned in the monastery, and to use certain mantras and visualizations. Rinpoche practiced these techniques for twelve hours each day. The black liquid that was oozing from his leg gradually turned cloudy, he experienced bruising and swelling and a temporary increase in pain. After nine months, the liquid flowing out of his wounds turned from cloudy to clear, and the swelling diminished. After twelve months he was able to walk without crutches, the gangrene was cured, and as an additional benefit, the Rinpoche’s diabetes and tuberculosis were now gone as well. Because Gangrene infection of this severity cannot be cured by the western medical approach, New York University asked Rinpoche to allow them to run tests on him to learn more about his surprising recovery. Phakyab Rinpoche is now embracing his higher destiny as a public figure and teacher and is publishing a book about his remarkable healing journey.5

During the course of my own research and healing, I listened to a radio interview that deepened my insight into these conscious healing forces of nature that surround us and live within us. The man being interviewed was named Stephan Schwartz, a parapsychology research associate for the government-sponsored Cognitive Sciences Laboratory. He told the story about a shamanic healing ritual that he witnessed at the Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.), a non-profit organization founded by the famous Christian mystic and psychic, Edgar Cayce. Schwartz had been invited by Edgar Cayce’s son, Hugh Lynn, who asked Schwartz to pick up their guest, a middle aged Native American shaman of the Cherokee and Shoshone tribes, from the Greyhound bus station. The man went by the name Rolling Thunder; he was a well known medicine man, teacher and activist. Bob Dylan organized a series of concerts in honor of him called The Rolling Thunder Revue and the Grateful Dead named an album after him. The road from the bus station back to the A.R.E. traveled along the edge of a state forest. Schwartz was surprised when Rolling Thunder suddenly asked him to stop the car. The shaman got out of the vehicle, grabbed his bag and said “what time do I have to be there tomorrow?” He asked Schwartz to bring two beef steaks to the ritual, then he disappeared into the woods.

Rolling Thunder

Rolling Thunder [CC-BY-2.0]

The next day, 40 doctors had gathered behind the A.R.E. building to witness the healing, when Rolling Thunder emerged from the woods. He walked up to Schwartz and asked him to build a fire. Two ambulances pulled up and a young male patient, around 20 years old, with a large open leg wound involving severely torn muscles was carried out on a gurney. He was noticeably in much pain and his doctor and parents were with him. A massage table was set up next to the fire and the patient was placed on top. Rolling Thunder asked Schwartz to unwrap one of the steaks and throw it on the ground. From his bag, the shaman pulled out a raven’s breast with an attached wing. He began to chant and wave the raven’s wing above the patient with gentle stroking movements. As Rolling Thunder moved, a white mist started to form around him, about 6 to 8 inches from his body. Schwartz, at first thought he was the only one who saw this, but as the mist started to take the shape of a canine animal, he heard gasps from the crowd. Rolling Thunder would periodically shake the raven’s wing toward the steak on the ground. After a while Rolling Thunder stopped and the mist began to dissipate. The doctors gathered around to examine the patient, who was lying there almost like he was in a trance. The wound was gone and in its place was fresh pink, shiny skin, similar to what you see when a scab is removed. According to Schwartz, the doctors were dumbfounded, and one of them began to laugh uncontrollably. The young patient, his doctor and parents went back to the ambulance.

The Shaman motioned for the other steak and then the next patient was carried out of the second ambulance and placed on the massage table. He was another young male with a similar leg wound, and his mother and doctor were with him. Rolling Thunder began the stroking movements again, and the mist started to form around him, only this time it would partially form and then dissipate over and over again. He eventually stopped and walked over to Hugh Lynn Casey and said “I can’t do it, this boy’s mother will not allow it”. Then there was a huddle and the young patient’s doctor came over, and Hugh Lynn asked what the situation was with the mother. The doctor said “Well it’s true what he’s saying, this boy was very independent and she has been losing contact with him. Now he’s back in her control and she can take care of him like she did when he was a little boy. I don’t know what to say about any of this, but it makes sense.” So the second young man, sadly did not get healed. He was placed back in the ambulance and it drove away. As the crowd dispersed, Rolling Thunder asked Schwartz to throw the steaks into the fire. Schwartz looked down at the steaks on the ground and noticed that they were now gray in color, and looked spoiled. Schwartz said “That’s where you put the energy that you drew off from the boy?”  Rolling Thunder replied “That’s right.” 6

© NPS photo by Timothy Rains. License.

© NPS photo by Timothy Rains. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

As I listened to Stephan Schwartz tell this compelling story, it brought up just as many questions as answers. I had heard of the Native American tradition of power animals and that they believed that each of us had access to them. But I never before imagined that this relationship between a human and the spirit of an animal or animal species could cooperate in such a mysterious and incredibly valuable way. I wondered about the possible past life karma between the second patient and his mother, that might allow her to have such control over his own healing path? I wondered what became of the two young male patients and the doctors who witnessed this extraordinary event? More than anything, I wondered about the incredible potential of the human being who chooses to acknowledge, respect and welcome these healing forces of nature to work through him or her, as this powerful shaman did.

Later in the interview, Schwartz explained this phenomenon from his perspective. “Rolling Thunder was a man who had developed a protocol. That is what spiritual and religious rituals are; they are a kind of protocol. In ethnohistoric spiritual communities that have long lineages from one generation to the next, they [spiritual rituals] are in effect a kind of spiritual science. The rituals they develop are the protocols – just like a scientist uses protocols. The difference is that they don’t take independent measurements – the outcome is obvious if you get healed – but the techniques that are used are in many ways quite similar to a scientist doing an experiment. That’s the way I’ve come to think of them. These are in essence spiritual sciences that developed through empirical observation over long, long periods of time.”

While discussing his involvement in further parapsychology research, Schwartz mentioned his study concerning the effects of therapeutic intention on the molecular structure of water. He discovered that when individuals sent healing intentions into samples of tap water, there was a change in the oxygen-hydrogen bonding relationship. After this shift in the water was achieved, samples were then compared with water from natural springs that are traditionally associated with healing. Surprisingly, the oxygen-hydrogen bonding relationship of the tap water had shifted to match the molecular structure of the healing spring water. Schwartz reported that there are 130 scientific papers within the oncology literature, showing that when this oxygen-hydrogen bonding relationship changes in the water inside the cells of the body, there is a stimulation of the body’s immune response.7

Schwartz stated that he and researchers in his field are just beginning to understand the issue of focused intention, and the role that this plays in opening to non-local consciousness (the aspect of our consciousness that transcends the boundary of our physical body and ordinary physical senses). “The research is telling us that there are two kinds of phenomenon… There is non-local perception – that’s opening to that aspect of yourself which is outside of time-space, and there is non-local perturbation – that is the ability of an individual, through intention, to have an effect on a physical system or another living organism. It is very wide-spread. Unquestionably some people are better at it than others.”8

In shamanism it is said that the strength of our intentions, personal power or “medicine” is equal to how deep our relationship is with the Creator of the universe, and with all the living forces of nature. Each of us can explore these relationships by going within through meditation where we reconnect with our source. Here we capture a glimpse of the memory of our true nature and potential – the memory that we are eternal and that all is well in the universe, that all experiences are one when we return to source; that we enter this physical world to explore, to develop, to create, to love and to be helpful to each other. While in deep meditation, we slow down our brainwave frequencies and become more sensitive to the subtle energies of nature and of the spirit world. We can strengthen our relationship with our own physical body, our spirit guides and all of nature, the earth, sun, moon and stars…the elements, animals, plants and stones, understanding that they are all conscious and aware and respond to the energies of our emotions and our thoughts. We can experiment with tuning in to these forces and noticing how they affect us – sensing differences in the momentum or spin of the earth energy compared with a specific star, or the energy of a tree compared with an animal, or the varying forces that are felt while meditating in the desert, near the ocean or on a volcanic landscape. 

Throughout all cultures and their related spiritual belief systems, evidence can be found that our true human potential expands far beyond the world’s general understanding. When we reach very deep levels of meditation, we can awaken a primordial cosmic power within us that revives our original desire to align our intentions with the will of the Creator. This enhances our ability to communicate with and cooperate with the living universe. We can talk with our physical body, the earth, the stars and all of nature, with the awareness that every thing and every being is alive, channels the creative force of the universe, and responds synergistically to recognition, respect and gratitude. We can ask these forces to come together to guide us, and to increase the power and focus of our intentions. We can welcome these forces to assist us in fulfilling our higher potential as we express our wisdom, love, creativity and healing abilities in this world.

The Shaman Within: Channeling Universal Life Force To Heal Your Body

We live in a sea of subtle energies.  We can become conscious of them and learn to use them.
Ancient cultures understood that we live in a vast sea of energy.  They understood that the planets and stars are conscious beings who communicate with each other.  They believed that the trees serve as antennas, which allow natural subtle energies and information to flow up from the Earth to the stars and planets, and from all other celestial bodies into the Earth.  They taught that everything and every being has consciousness and channels this energy according to its capabilities, to help facilitate this essential cosmic dialogue.  In fact, they understood that all matter, including the physical body, is a gathering of this universal energy.  They recognized that our thoughts and emotions are a form of energy, and that when these are in harmony with the living universal energy field, we become clear channels.  Then, the life force of the Earth and cosmos flows through us more smoothly and abundantly, guiding our evolution as new perspectives are revealed and advanced abilities are awakened within us.  These abilities include heightened creativity, extrasensory perception and the ability to bring about dramatic physical healing.  Shamans learn to feel, sense and use this energy without filtering or distorting it.  They often refer to this process as becoming a “hollow bone”.

We transmit and receive energy.
This universal sea of energy, called Qi in China and Prana in India, circulates through our bodies, interacts with the electromagnetic spectrum and includes other subtler energies not yet understood by western science.1 It is the foundation for the practice of acupuncture, where thin needles are used to assist the flow of vital energy through meridians in the body.  It is the inner force that advanced martial artists cultivate and direct outward.  The Hopis of the American Southwest use the term Kachina to describe the world of subtle energies. They perform rituals and ceremonies to interact with the Kachina in order to attract rain to grow their crops, and to receive healing and other benefits.  The Dogon people of Africa call the channel through which the Earth projects energies through us, the Bayuali.  They call the channel through which we receive energies from the cosmos, the Yenu.  The Dogon believe that it is our responsibility as humans to become clear channels who ease the flow of cosmic energies rather than interfere with or obstruct them.

Although western medicine limits its focus to electromagnetic energies, it does acknowledge that the human body functions as a two-way antenna.  Doctors use tools such as ECG’s and EEG’s to determine whether a patient is still alive by measuring the electrical energy being transmitted from within that patient’s body.  They understand that our bodies receive information from electromagnetic fields in our environment to regulate circadian rhythms, such as our sleep-wake cycles. 2 Scientific studies indicate that the spinal cord (containing cerebro-spinal fluid which is conductive) acts as a natural antenna and that DNA serves as a fractal antenna, capable of operating at many different frequencies simultaneously. 3 It is also interesting to note that the U.S. army demonstrated that trees work as remarkably good antennas for wireless communication and used them for this purpose during the Vietnam War. 4

7.83 HZ: The Earth and cosmos exchange energy and information.
Nikola Tesla – the physicist whose inventions laid the foundation for our modern use of electricity and wireless technologies such as alternating current, radio, x-ray, radar and Tesla3remote control – discovered that the Earth receives, stores and transmits energy.  In 1899, he built a lab in Colorado Springs on the summit of Pikes Peak, a site considered sacred by the Hopi and Ute Indians. While running experiments there, he detected extremely low frequency (ELF) waves of electromagnetic energy being naturally transmitted within the cavity between the Earth’s surface and the ionosphere, 80 kilometers above the Earth.  He discovered that within these ELF waves, those that vibrated at about 8 cycles per second (8 Hz), flowed more smoothly between the Earth and ionosphere, with less resistance and greater amplitude (force or power). 5  He believed it was possible to use this innate frequency of approximately 8 Hz as a carrier wave to transmit information and power without wires, to any part of the world. 6 Tesla was deeply interested in preserving the Earth’s natural resources for future generations.  He spoke fervently about the need to discontinue the use of fuel as a power source.  His goal was to harness “the very wheelwork of nature” by tapping into the natural and renewable storage battery that exists between the Earth and the ionosphere. 7  He was unable to obtain sufficient funding to complete projects involving the wireless transmission of power, however his idea of the wireless transmission of information led to the invention of both AM and FM radio. 8 Tesla also stated that during his time at Pikes Peak, he recorded radio waves being emitted from the cosmos to the Earth.  Countries around the world now use radio waves to analyze the composition of stars and planets. 9 In 1952, a physicist named Schumann measured the resonant frequency of the Earth-ionosphere cavity more specifically to be 7.83 Hz (confirming Tesla’s calculations of approximately 8 Hz).  The Earth transmits and receives a measurable energetic frequency that surrounds all life on this planet.  It has been discovered that the human brain, while in a deep state of meditation, lowers its brainwave oscillations to harmonize with the Earth’s resonant frequency.

We tune into this cosmic dialogue of energies by adjusting the frequency of our brainwaves.
In Shamanic traditions, drums have long been used to produce rhythmic vibrations that assist the Shaman in attuning his/her mind with the living universal energy field.  In this state of altered consciousness, the Shamanic practitioner is able to interact with the non-physical world.  They channel and transmit subtle universal energies to help heal themselves and others.  They also receive information in the form of vivid imagery, thoughts, words and ideas BrainwaveChartFinalcommunicated to them by guides and ancestors from the spirit world.  This shamanic tradition has been studied using EEG tests. Results showed that the brainwave pattern of the subjects slowed down into a theta state. 10 This state is entered when the majority of brainwaves transmitted by the subject, begin oscillating at a frequency of 4-8 cycles per second (4-8 Hz). EEG studies performed on regular meditators revealed that they also enter this theta state during periods of deep meditation. 11 Those who practice a consistent meditation routine often report experiencing a shift in their awareness of surrounding energies, sudden realizations, colorful visions, new abilities and emotional and physical healing.  They also report that the more often they meditate, the easier it becomes to access this altered state.

Tesla was aware of this living universal energy field.  In his article, Man’s Greatest Achievement, he used Vedic terms such as Prana and Akasha to describe this field, from which all perceptible matter is generated.  He said that he accumulated many of his ideas while alone in deep meditation. 12  He called himself “a sensitive receiver” and reported seeing visions and receiving premonitions, including one that helped him to prevent his friends from boarding a train that later crashed. 13  He disclosed that he had a photographic memory and described visualizing his inventions in such detail that he could operate the device in his mind, then make improvements to it and provide precise and correct measurements without ever even drawing a sketch. 14

A shamanic practitioner explained to me that we all continuously receive and transmit energy and information through this subtle universal field.  However we spend much of our time in the higher frequency beta brainwave state (15-30 Hz) associated with alertness, logic, critical reasoning and stress.  This distracts us from the subtler energies and inhibits their flow through our bodies.  We could compare this to having our car radio tuned into the same station all the time, not knowing that we can adjust the dial.  Adjusting our brainwaves to the Earth’s natural frequency of approximately 8 Hz through regular meditation, is like turning the dial on your radio to a new station.  While tuned in we receive more life force and information from the universe.  At this frequency, we also transmit energy with the benefit of constructive interference.  This term, used in physics, describes the increased amplitude (force or power) that occurs when two waves of the same frequency come together.  When we harmonize our brainwaves with the natural frequency of the planet, our intentions are transmitted with the force of the Earth behind them, giving them much more power and direction.

New abilities are awakened within us.
In a previous article, Your Cells Are Listening, How Talking to Your Body Helps You Heal, I wrote about a surprising ability that was awakened within me after several months of dedicated meditation.  This is the ability to converse with my body through words, and receive dramatic physical responses.  As I talked with my leg – where I was experiencing severe pain and partial paralysis caused by a condition called reflex sympathetic dystrophy – I suddenly felt scar tissue unwinding under my skin, nerves firing and energy moving along defined pathways through my calf.  My calf muscles began to perform flexion and extension exercises independently of my conscious control, as electric-like jolts continued to shoot through the area.  Through a series of conversations with my leg, I was able to completely restore function to the muscles.  Realizing the broad potential of this mind-body technique, I organized my approach into a system that I could teach to clients, called Antara (Sanskrit for within).

Experiences we have encountered in our lifetime and how we have processed them determines the way our body funnels universal energies.

© Cedron Mark Sterling LMP.

© Cedron Mark Sterling LMP.

By communicating with different tissues in my body, it became clear that changes in the connective tissue called fascia were responsible for unwinding the tension and scar tissue, freeing the impinged nerves, unblocking the acupuncture channels and allowing communication to be restored between my nerves and my muscles.  The fascial network is a thin, very strong, three-dimensional net of biological fabric, containing many layers which envelope and infuse every other tissue in your body.  Providing both integrity and elasticity, the fascia holds your organs in place and aligns your spine and joints while allowing mobility.  It also provides pathways for blood vessels, nerves and lymphatic vessels to travel through, so that nutrients and hormones can be delivered to every cell and toxins can be carried away to be eliminated.  The fascia also serves as the supporting physical material for the acupuncture meridian system. Physical trauma can lead to increased tension and the formation of scar tissue within the fascial network.  This causes the fascia to shorten and tighten, which can impinge nerves, disrupt the flow of blood, lymph and energy and pull the spine and joints out of alignment.

While applying and teaching this technique, I have observed that emotional trauma also plays a role in fascial tension and scar tissue.  According to shamanic belief, physical tissues at the deepest level, are a gathering or concentration of emotional energy.  All physical life forms begin with a single emotional impulse.  Emotional energy is the trellis that physical bodies grow on.  My experience with the Antara method suggests that the fascial network in the body is a physical representation of what I call emotional latticework.  Each of us builds our own unique emotional latticework within our body that is formed from the energy of both positive and negative emotions.  Stress, unresolved traumas, and suppressed emotions can build a complicated energetic latticework containing disharmonious frequencies that seem to change the tonicity of the fascia and interfere with energy flow.  Imagine the fascia as a biological fabric made up of many long threads.  Each thread vibrates with life force similarly to how a string on a guitar vibrates when waves of energy travel through it.  When you tighten a guitar string by twisting the tuning key, this raises the pitch (the frequency of vibration of the string).  When the tonicity or tension of the fascial threads change, their frequency of vibration also changes, and the body becomes an out of tune instrument.  This alters the resonance allowance of the body or the range of frequencies that the body naturally channels.

Often while communicating with my own body, I would feel very obvious unwinding sensations in my fascia, and each time that I was able to release a new line of tension or layer of scar tissue, I would experience an intense dream that very same evening.  The dreams would usually involve people, relationships or events from my past – usually those that I haven’t thought about in a very long time.  Occasionally the dreams would be based on primal fears (or possibly past life experiences) rather than anything I have experienced in this lifetime.

Clients also report being surprised by the unexpected emotions or dreams that surface while they are practicing Antara.  This is true in both gradual and sudden onset cases of chronic pain. It seems that the energy of unexpressed emotions can compromise the tonicity of the fascia, and interfere with the normal healing process after injury.  At some point the emotion becomes trapped within the tissue. The Antara process unwinds the fascia and releases the trapped energy, then the emotion is experienced as it either easily flows out of the body or is brought to the surface where it can be acknowledged, processed and then released.  The newly liberated fascial threads re-integrate with the whole, as the fascial network begins to function like an orchestra playing in harmony again.  The life force from the Earth and stars flows more smoothly through the body and the regenerative processes return.

Illness and injury are an opportunity to evolve.
In Shamanic teaching, illness that does not respond to conventional treatment often indicates a spiritual initiation process that leads to the disruption of normal life and withdrawal from the mundane world. The individual undergoes a period of physical, psychological and spiritual trial, where they must feel, understand and integrate the most difficult experiences of their life. By seeking answers to the mysteries of life and by turning inward through meditation, new levels of awareness are reached.  The individual gains freedom from self-imposed restrictions and oppressive environments (both of which can manifest as tension in the fascial network that resists energy flow). They realize that every physical challenge, every emotion, and every person that crosses their path has been a stimulant for their own evolution and are able to navigate life with more inner peace and trust in the process. With less interference, they begin to channel universal life force more freely and discover surprising abilities within. This transformation can lead them to a higher purpose or destiny than previously imagined. They are given the opportunity to heal themselves and then share what they have learned while making a lasting contribution to the world. The Antara method is the result of my own experiments with focused intention during deep meditation. While in a brainwave state attuned with the Earth’s natural resonance, my intentions to communicate with my body are transmitted with greater power and direction. With the support of the Earth and Cosmos and the cooperation of my physical body, I was able to manifest dramatic and profound physical healing. We exist in a living universal energy field. Each one of us can become conscious of this field and learn to better cooperate with it in order to overcome challenges, and to fulfill our higher destinies in this life.

Featured Image © Tom Hall [CC-BY-2.0]