Our minds & bodies respond to unaddressed emotional wounds with increased fear, a propensity to dissociate & developing toxic shame. This creates an altered & distorted inner reality which I call a ‘trauma-world’. Healing requires that we transform our trauma-world by developing consciousness, responsibility & compassion.
Discussion of how to define trauma, the trade-offs that come into play in the wake of traumatising events (and their roots in evolution), the difference between healing and curing trauma.
We are becoming increasingly aware of how widespread trauma is, and of the huge costs it imposes not only on individuals and their immediate communities, but also on society more generally. But there is a great deal of misunderstanding about trauma, and we need to develop far greater clarity if we are to work with it more effectively.
Introducing trauma-worlds and how they effect our daily lives.
The Death Mother as Nature’s Shadow: Fostering compassion and healing through an evolutionary consciousness
Western culture tends to view maternal ambivalence and hostility as unnatural. Evolutionary research challenges this view. The situations faced by ancestral mothers sometimes made abandoning a child inevitable. Recognising this fosters compassion for today’s struggling mothers, as well as greater understanding of the trauma carried by their children.
How my understanding of the world and my place in it, was forever changed by moonlight and mosquitoes.
How I came to know my evolutionary heritage from inside the fibres of my muscles and the immediacy of my senses.
Recent evolutionary thinking has much to contribute to attachment theory and to the understanding of childhood relational trauma.
When we suffer experiences that are emotionally damaging, survival systems are activated inside of us. These systems are built around fear, dissociation, and shame. They change how we feel and think about both ourselves and others. They also change how we behave. In the short term these changes are protective, but in the long term they create terrible suffering. Indeed, as the changes are incorporated into both our minds and bodies, we start to live from within a reality that is distorted, self-critical and dulled. I call this reality a ‘trauma-world’. In this presentation I’ll describe trauma-worlds, the protection that they offer and the suffering that they create. I’ll then explore how we can transform our trauma-worlds, and move away from their distortions towards a more compassionate and vibrant life.