When a system is far from equilibrium, small islands of coherence in a sea of chaos have the capacity to shift the entire system to a higher order – Ilya Prigogine.
The human body is potentially a vessel of a profound process of transformation, encompassing the sensuous world of matter, the subtle realm, and the Absolute. The body is also a window to the depth of one’s human life and carries forward all of one’s experience, from infancy through to adulthood.
Trauma is a living, dynamic phenomenon embedded in people’s everyday activities, encounters, and exchanges. It is experienced as regressing and advancing in a series of entanglements, multiple temporalities, selves, and environments.
The consequences of trauma are vast, including structures of defense that are difficult to unearth, a compromised immune system, dissociation and splits in the psyche. However, trauma has been shown to be regenerative; through embodied healing one can reconnect to one’s authentic aliveness and wholeness, whereby a profound compassion emerges, which has the ability to hold the complexity of the human experience. The traumas one endures and resolves within the body/mind seem to be a crucial part of opening to deeper levels of compassion while dissolving psychological conditioning, and awakening the spiritual heart which has the capacity to know the Absolute in its entirety.
Contemplative practices that include subtle-realm perspectives from both Eastern and Western traditions have been shown to influence recovery from trauma. Research points toward the valuable relationship between numinous insights and scientific understanding of consciousness and thus indicates the importance of including the imaginal dimension of being in the healing process. The somatic, imaginal, and cognitive aspects of our experience are important elements that can be woven together to restore wholeness.