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Imagery Provides Underground Healing for Severe Childhood Abuse

10 Oct

This was posted on a Christian CD thread from a survivor of childhood abuse. We're putting it here because of the way the writer speaks to a very unique and potent characteristic of guided imagery (hypnosis, too) – the way it functions like a depth charge, dropped below the surface of conscious thinking (and under the pesky radar of resistance and ambivalence) where it can reverberate again and again, catalyzing a deep and system-wide kind of healing that may go unnoticed for some time.

The messages are pinging and working, even while you're sleeping, chatting with a friend, thinking analytically at work, driving the kids to soccer practice... this is the gift that keeps on giving. The writer of this note phrased his comments in such a way that they perfectly reflect this wonderful capacity. Here it is:

As a survivor of severe child abuse, your PTSD Mp3's have been one of the most important gifts I've ever received--both literally and figuratively speaking. I must have listened to the program dozens of times within the past year, if not more, and each time I have a new experience and gain new insight that helps me heal. I revel in the program's simplicity and yet each phrase and imagery is so condensed with meaning and power that they are like seeds of light that plant themselves in the mind and grow over time. It's extraordinary... for the helpful effect it's having on my healing journey. Thank you.

Gene

[Ed. Note: Thank you back, Gene, for underlining this critical idea, that imagery can work continuously, percolating beneath the surface, and potentiating healing in a profound and almost magical way.]

Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award.