Monday, March 13, 2023

Slow and safe

We’ve all been given experience that we’ve been unable to process consciously. This is one of the basic characteristics of trauma, unendurable emotional pain that hasn’t been able to find a relational home in which it can be held.

There are times in my clinical work when I’ll meet with someone who is really suffering, but they can’t actually feel that pain. They’re not able to make contact with the felt quality of the open wound.

Instead, there’s a protective numbing, a dissociative shut down and collapse into the somatic unconscious. From here, the lost orphans of psyche and soma burn, ache, and long for holding.

This response is coherent and makes sense based on what happened earlier in their lives, and was an adaptive response in the face of survival-level anxiety and annihilatory panic, to the very real threat of psychic disintegration.

Trauma is the experience of de-linking – left and right, top and bottom, limbic and cortical, body and mind – and linkage occurs through the felt sense of safety.

Where we find a way, guided by mercy and grace, to touch that experience, hold it in love, make sense of it, and integrate it into a new cohesive narrative.

Slow and safe. I’m with you, and you’re safe. I’m with you and you’re safe. You’re no longer alone. And you’re safe.

While insight and clarity can be supportive, it is right-brain immersion in fields of safety which fosters cellular restructuring.

The psyche will reassemble when it feels safe.

The body will reorganize when it feels safe.

Join the waitlist for Matt's Spirituality & Healing online group and community

Friday, February 24, 2023

Late entry to Matt's 2023 Spirituality & Healing Group and Community

Dear friend, 

I’ve been receiving some questions about whether it’s still possible to join the new 2023 Spirituality & Healing online group and community that started on February 2.

We have decided to re-open enrollment up until the start of the first live session in March (Thursday, March 2nd). At that time, the community will remain closed for the remainder of the year, so that the group can go through the course together in a cohesive, grounded, supportive way.

Enrolling now, you’ll be able to catch up on what you missed in February and review the videos, meditations, and teachings for the month, and join us for our live sessions in March.

While there will be a lot of space and holding of whatever it is the group is guided to explore, there are some basic themes that will be foundational in the journey we’ll be making together. These themes will rotate organically as we come into the relational field together and attune to what it is that wants and needs to emerge to be illuminated, held, and transformed.

The vision for the training is to help support you in whatever way I can to deepen your own path of transformation and healing, sharing with you my personal and clinical experience over the last 30 years in the fields of depth and somatic psychology; relational neuroscience and trauma studies; and the experiential discoveries of the alchemical and meditation traditions.

You can learn more about the course below:

>>Learn more about Matt Licata’s Spirituality & Healing Immersion Group here

Here is a sample of some of the rotating themes we’ll explore together as a community. We’ll meet live three times each month for teachings, meditations, guided practices, and interaction, where I’ll respond to questions about this path of embodied transformation, psychological integration, and a spirituality of the heart.

  • Psychotherapy, Meditation, and the Creation of an Internal Holding Environment
  • Initiation and the Journey of the Wounded Healer in the Contemporary World
  • Trauma and the Sacred: Exploring the Link Between Spirituality and Our Wounding
  • Slowing Down and the Importance of a Daily Attunement and Compassion Practice
  • Relationship as Path: the Interactional Field and How Relationships Serve as the Healing Temple for the Modern Practitioner
  • Encoding New Circuitry, Neuroplasticity, and the Capacity of the Nervous System to Rewire
  • Ending the Trance of Self-Abandonment and Taking Care of Yourself in a New Way
  • The Importance of Shadow Work and Listening to the Unconscious
  • The Essential Role of Psychological Work on the Spiritual Path: the Union of Sun and Moon
  • Your Alchemical Toolkit and the Various Types of Inner Work: Safety, Uncovering, Imaginal, Existential, and Transpersonal
  • The Embodied Practice of Integration: Accessing, Verbalizing, and Making Sense of Your Experience
  • Neural Integration, Attuning to Feeling, and the Wisdom of Your Body
  • Past Wounding (Narcissistic/ Attachment), Historic Core Vulnerabilities, and Working in the Here and Now
  • The Transformative Potential Within the “Blue Shades” of the Spectrum: Grief, Melancholy, and Heartbreak as Guides of the Soul
  • Discovering a Yoga of Your Own: Individuation and the Uniqueness of the Spiritual Life
  • Creating a Temple for the Lost Orphans and Children of Psyche and Soma: Integral Inner Child Work
This is only a sample of the territory we’ll be covering, which will also unfold organically as we begin to create and attune to the holding environment which presents itself as the weeks go by.

I invite you to learn more about the program below.

>> Learn more about the 2023 Spirituality & Healing Immersion Group here

Thank you for taking the time to read through this email and for your interest in this work and in your own transformation and healing. I hope to see you online inside the community in the days to come!



Tuesday, February 21, 2023

To live once again

Much of our wounding occurs prior to the acquisition of language and is not able to be healed through the questioning and reorganization of patterns of thinking. In other words, we can’t think our way out of trauma, attachment, and narcissistic injury.

When our capacity to process unbearable terror, panic, and shame is overwhelmed, unmetabolized pieces of soul are held subcortically and in our cellular circuitry, unreachable by thinking which is a layer removed from the fires of the alchemical body.

Encouragement to “just get over it, it’s just your ego, just let it be, it isn’t who you really are” is experienced by an inflamed nervous system as the activity of empathic failure, aggression, and psychic violence.

It’s like a neural form of gaslighting and reflects a deep misunderstanding of relational wounding and implicit memory, and only contributes to the intergenerational transmission of trauma.

In addition to shattering and unendurable experience – which is painful and terrifying enough – there is a profound sense of aloneness that goes with this, the disorganizing reality of the missing Friend, and no accompaniment into the dark night. “I am alone in this.”

This is devastating to the soul.

When the lost orphans of psyche and soma come surging to be held, they’re not all that interested in our crystal-clear analysis, detached witnessing and fantasies of “mastery,” or powerful spiritual insights.

They’re longing for something else… for you, for your heart, for your holding. To know that you will stay near, that you will not abandon or shame them, that you will do your best to provide sanctuary and safe passage for them to come Home, to be helped out of that frozen, crystallized state and to live once again.

Photo by Lisa Runnels