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