Effective PTSD Recovery with Shamanic Soul Retrieval
“It is estimated that 70% of adults in the United States will experience one or more traumatic events in their lives, and 20% will go on to develop PTSD”1 For individuals who suffer from PTSD and other psychological disorders, conventional treatment methods may not be enough to bring about balanced psychological and physical health. Based upon their effectiveness, several complementary and alternative holistic PTSD recovery treatments, including shamanic soul retrieval, have increasingly gained popularity in helping those who suffer from PTSD, anxiety, depression and other psychological disorders.
What is PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder)?
PTSD is a disorder that impacts a person’s psyche and may develop after being involved in, exposed to, or witnessing a traumatic event. Most often, individuals who develop PTSD were exposed to war, assault, abuse, and natural disasters. PTSD often replaces a person’s hopes and dreams with fear and anxiety, as symptoms of PTSD can drastically impact a person’s life. Symptoms of PTSD may include severe anxiety, anxiousness, flashbacks, nightmares, and avoiding discussion about the event. Bursts of anger are also common.
Conventional PTSD Recovery Methods
Conventional treatment methods for PTSD most often include a combination of medication and therapy. PTSD is a complex disorder as not only does it impact a person’s psyche, but it also activates the limbic brain causing the brain to release stress chemicals into the body. Prescribed medication can help alleviate the symptoms associated with anxiety, depression, and also help calm the body’s physical response to the trauma. However, it is important to acknowledge that medication does equate to full and lasting PTSD recovery.
A combination of group and personal therapy is used to help the individual confront their feelings and thoughts about the event; help them disassociate themselves from the trauma that haunts them. By working toward disassociation, the goal is to help the person’s mind and body realize that the experience is only a memory and can no longer bring harm to their daily life. However, based upon each person’s unique association with the trauma they experienced, therapy can sometimes re-traumatize an individual and cause them even more emotional distress.
Shamanic Soul Retrieval Holistic PTSD Recovery
Long before the arrival of modern medicine, indigenous cultures developed their own healing systems to treat aliments that inflicted people within their tribes and communities. While the traditions of Shamanic Healing, Native American Healing, and other cultures may vary, the core belief remains true. People are a part of nature; health requires balance.
Health (or disease) results from the interconnection between our self, our emotional, and our spiritual well-being. Disease (psychological or physical) is not defined solely by our physical pathology or by our physical symptoms, but disease is an imbalance of our body, mind, spirit, and soul; the lost connection with our true-self and nature. “Western medicine cures the body, while psychology treats the mind – but healing attends to the soul and the spirit”2
Individuals who suffer from PTSD lose their connection with their soul – their authentic-self. People who lose their connection with their soul often feel as though a part of them is missing, feel incomplete, and feel a deep internal void. People lose sight of their heart’s desires, their greatest gifts, and their life’s purpose and meaning. The world is no longer perceived as safe and full of possibilities, but the world is filled with terror and fear. People who lose their connection with their soul question their future and wonder if they will ever lead a life void of pain. In the Shamanic tradition, the feeling of loss and disconnectedness with one’s Self is called soul loss.
Shamans believe that when a traumatic event occurs, parts of a person’s soul can leave the body as a means of protecting the Self from future harm. Shamanic Soul Retrieval is the process of escorting the lost soul part back to the body and reuniting the person’s entire soul. The soul retrieval process and integration allows the person to change how they perceive the event that caused the trauma as well as change all of their future emotional and physical responses to the original traumatic event. In addition, Shamanic healing and soul retrieval offers a pathway to calm and reroute the limbic system to help the brain to recognize peace versus pain. “Thus, when we engage in soul retrieval, we want the benefits to be received at the levels of the spirit, soul, mind, and body. We don’t just want to bring back an insight that would only be understood intellectually, we want the core transformation of our beliefs, our behaviors, and even our neurophysiology.”2
As people seek therapy, counseling, and medication to alleviate their symptoms, recover their health, and fill the emptiness within, the focus of conventional methods is to treat the body and to treat the mind. Historically as a society, we place more importance on healing the physical body and on healing the mind. Medication and therapy are tangible treatment options and therefore people are often more comfortable with the belief that these treatments will provide them with the relief they are looking for. While shamanic soul retrieval as a path to PTSD recovery may seem a bit unconventional, this method has proven quite effective in helping people suffering from PTSD and other psychological disorders. Shamanic Soul Retrieval plays a critical role in helping those who suffer from PTSD to truly heal. By helping people recover their lost soul parts and reunite their entire mind, body, spirit, and soul, the person will have the opportunity to move beyond medication, move beyond symptom management and start living their life. By reuniting their missing soul parts, the person will reconnect with their deepest desires, know what it means to be whole again, and embrace their life’s purpose and meaning. People can now achieve sustainable PTSD recovery by taking the opportunity to let go of the past trauma that has bound them, transform their wounds into sources of wisdom and strength, and fulfill their deepest desire to know a life void of pain and full of healing.
- Fred P. Gallo, P. (2007).Energy Tapping for Trauma. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications, Inc.
- Alberto Villoldo, P. (2005).Soul Retrieval: Mending the Past Healing the Future. Hay House, Inc.