Buddhist Psychology teaches how to lovingly anchor ourselves in the physical body in order to attend to exiled parts of ourselves with compassion and deep understanding. This is the process of true healing vs. symptom relief, the latter sadly being the norm in our world of a medicalized approach to psychotherapy.
I see you as a 'whole' person, and NOT as defined by the many diagnosis that reduce the complex human being into 'cookie cutter' labels.
Help with trauma essentially involves helping the person to stop re-traumatizing themselves through the mental replay of the events that happened in the past, which then the body re-lives again and again, and this of course gets solidified into a behavior pattern. In this, I have been guided especially by my unique background of being a Buddhist practitioner and meditator, which I have come to see as my true education.
The simple yet profound teachings of Buddhist Psychology point us to the real cause of the suffering we are experiencing to be in the way we "grab" or "hold onto" our views, beliefs, and expectations, and in doing so burn ourselves with the hot fire of self-inflicted pain. This is always the case when we live "in our heads," cut off from the physical body.
Another crucial pillar of Buddhist Psychology is the understanding that awareness alone is not enough and that it must be joined with our conscious choice of thoughts, words, and actions. Awareness thus joined with intentional action is what yields lasting and true change. This is my guiding philosophy of life, and what essentially informs my therapeutic approach.
Trauma shows up in many ways. It can channel itself into our living experience in the form of depression, anxiety, anger, fear, addiction, and result in unhappy relationships, both within ourselves and with others. It is not uncommon for one to be looking for a psychotherapist for anxiety, a psychotherapist for depression or addiction, and so on, while not seeing how all of these unhappy habits and states of mind are often caused by unresolved trauma.
When wounded parts of ourselves are healed, we are able to live in the present with the body as our anchor, and are no longer imprisoned by the fear-based reactions and perceptions that our traumatic experiences made us adapt for the sake of our survival.
Once our younger parts are “seen,” heard, appreciated, and thereby healed, as we give them the love and compassion they needed (but never received), we are then able to put down the burden of those perceptions, beliefs, roles, and negative behaviors that traumatic events conditioned us in becoming, and instead, learn how to “catch up with the present” with a ‘straighter back and lighter complexion.’
Narine Jallatyan is a Registered Associate Marriage & Family Therapist AMFT 126744
Under the supervision of Dr. Garbis Bartanian LMFT 112933
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