The real reason for chronic pain

A blog written in Dec. 2011, before Anahata was found or open….

A huge reason I left teaching in December was that I felt big parts of myself needed to be healed.  The yoga asanas that I had practiced for years began to crack open parts of myself that I needed to deal with.  With this intense growth, I knew I would come out in the end more compassionate, and hopefully more evolved than I was.  I journaled and wrote about past experiences from my childhood, and my life thus far.  We can only begin to truly heal by connecting to the disowned feelings and letting them be expressed, or released.  Things opened up that I had buried deep down inside.  It was self therapy at the deepest level.  I don’t think I have cried so much in all of my life, as these experiences came forward.  I also spend a couple of days beating the ?#!& out of a pillow.  I can say, it felt good, right, in fact, necessary to why very health and well being.  None of this will kill us; in fact it will heal us.

Dr. John Sarno believes so.  He is world-renowned specialist in pain management working at New York University Hospital.  Many people come to him after they have seen and exhausted all other revenues of healing.  What does he do to eliminate their pain?  He talks to them.  When we don’t think we can handle something in a way that feels safe and manageable, ie:  if we speak up, we might lose a relationship or job, or even worse, be thought of as a bad person-our survival mechanism kicks in and buries the feelings in the recesses of our psyche.  Those disowned feelings become part of our shadow.  This part of our psyche contains those aspects of our character that because of a disapproving society, shaming parent, or strict household-we cannot acknowledge or act out.  ‘because when we were very young we received the message that these traits were bad, we repressed or denied them.  In fact, they never go away, they just build and build getting louder and more pressing.  If we are angry, life will keep bringing us more anger until we pay attention and precess what needs to be heard and accepted.

How does this work?  This is just too crazy to believe you might say.  Dr. Sarno says that the brain simply orders a reduction of blood flow to a certain area, depriving it of oxygen which results in pain.  He points out that chronic pain shows up in an area that makes sense in your life.  Our bodies/brains are very clever that way.  If you play tennis, you might develop tennis elbow,  If you like to run, hip/knee or feet pain.  Let’s say you know a lot of people who have sinus infections.  As you are about to get close to an old, complicated emotion, you might suddenly develop a psychosomatic sinus infection, because your conscious mind would be be satisfied that sinus infections are common (hey, the kids are going back to school and sharing all of their germs!!) and not worth investigating on an emotional level.  Ah yes, I have a terrible sinus infection.  They seem to be going around these days, and I hear that they are very difficult to treat.  I must figure out what the best protocol is for this.  As so, the obsession with the difficult malady begins.  No room to think about feelings.  The foil worked, and for the moment you didn’t have to think about the internal and unresolved issues or feelings that were starting to emerge.

Even when you treat the symptom with surgery or medication and it seems to go away, in most cases, the symptom will either come back, or the mind-body will invent a new problem to claim your attention.  In fact, the psyche will often find something equal or more powerful it its attention-getting ability to replace the old complaint.  You can cure the presenting malady, but if you still have a powerful disowned emotions lurking beneath the surface, some other symptom or ache will arise to take its place.  How brilliantly the mind and body work together to save us from disturbing experiences!  Growth is often uncomfortable.  We don’t want to see ourselves in a certain light, so we tuck away what we think is repulsive or frightening, or disagreeable.  However, it is in our very nature to evolve and become more enlightened.  That disowned part of us wants to be heard and accepted.

When you go about this process of allowing your emotions to come without judgement, you will be led into your Truth.  Ask yourself if there is anger-rage even- that you need to connect with and then heal.  Allow yourself to drop into deep sadness or grief, even if you normal instinct is to pull yourself up by the bootstraps and “get over it”.  Even if you might be tempted to think that some things would be better off left alone, look into them anyway.  This process begins healing.  I saw dramatic changes within my family, as I began to let go of some of these strong emotions that had held within me.  After this work, the studio came to me, what I had been dreaming about and praying for.  Can I say how many times I drove by and saw it?  Back then, I was not ready.  I will end by this quote from the gospel of Thomas,  “Jesus says, if you bring forth that which is within you, what you bring forth will save you.  If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you”.  Yikes!!  That is why this work is so important.  Namaste fellow yogi’s, from my heart to yours,

Paula

 

 

 

 

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