"The root of our problem is trying to restore our complicated gut
ecosystem which has been lost though antibacterials etc... Explain how
meditation/trauma healing is going restore that loss? ... Unless God decides to
miracously heal us. But that is more prayer than it is meditation. Energy work
does not "replace" beneficial gut organisms that have been lost, but
only improves the efficiency of the organisms that are already there. A lady who
did biofeedback on me who believed in energy work, chakra,"trauma
healing" bla bla bla absolutley did nothing for my candida and in the
meantime just took my $$$= a bunch of money making QUACKERY(as far as candida
I completely agree with you that antibacterials and antibiotics in particular
are vastly overdone in our society and have turned down antibiotics several
times much the chagrin of my doctors. (Chewing three or four cloves of raw
garlic a day can bring relief from many things including our gut ecosystem and
even cancer. Am convinced that is what granted me my 20 year healing from
When you get to meditation though, I'll take exception to what your
wrote. Prayer and meditation are the same thing. God is within each
of us. Here's the story of a suicidal woman who did more than
prescription drugs (she threw them all away). She even thought of
suicide. She her ills with meditation. If you read her story you
will find that she had a "eureka" experience as do many long time mediators.
In fact there can be many eureka experiences during meditation and it is a
fantastic healing. Meditation takes patience, something that bodies often
don't have. They have to be trained.
Jane has one thing that many in our society who want a quick fix don't have
and that is desire and commitment. Call it stubbornness if you wish but it
has led me through a lot of the quagmire that our society throws at us every
I am a 33 year old recovered survivor of 20 years of mental illness. This is
what happened, and how I survived.
Like many of us with mental illness, it all started as I was growing up.
After years of child abuse and psycho emotional family histrionics I was
During the summer of 1989 at the age of 14 I tried to kill myself for the first
time of eventually six major suicide attempts. Soon after I also experienced the
first of several psychiatric hospitalizations. There in that place, I was
diagnosed with terminal mental illness, 3 weeks after inpatient admission.
During my stay there, an experience which lasted over 70 days I was tested,
examined, interviewed and therapied for weeks before a consensus diagnosis was
rendered. The hereditary seeds of mental illness had sprouted early in me. I was
told I had inherited an unknown chemical imbalance that in some way profoundly
effected my thoughts, feelings and behaviors.
The diagnoses? Dual Axis 1 diagnosis: Manic Depression, or Bipolar Disorder 1
Schizoid Affective Disorder co morbid with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
After 8 years of clinical psychotherapy, 3 psychiatric hospitalizations, 4 years
spent in residential treatment centers, group homes, mental health lock downs
and 6 months of involuntary medications of perphenazine and lithium carbonate I
remained absolutely and completely lost. Modern psychiatry had completely failed
to help me heal from suicidal depression or any of my problems at all. In fact,
the violation and mistreatment I experienced while in the juvenile mental health
system only made me worse in every way.
Having experienced utter failure with the meds and therapy approach, I gave
myself over to alternative healing. Along my path I have tried to keep an open
mind in the interest of healing myself of mental illness permanently. As such,
the following are just a sample of things I have undertaken in order to
understand their effects on the mind body and emotions.
I have tried self medication, crystal healing, Saint John’s Wort, veganism,
shamanistic purification rituals, flower essences and oils, vitamins and
supplements of all kinds, toning, aura cleansing, chakra balancing, praying,
chanting, music and sound therapy, touch therapy, reiki, toxin cleansings/flushings,
teas, magnets, gems and precious stones, tantra, affirmations and daily quotes,
positive thinking, deep tissue body work and movement therapies, ( Rolfing,
Feldenkrais and Alexander ) chiropractics, in short, I tried everything.
Over the course of a 10 year journey down a path of spiritual, physical and
mental healing. I personally explored, researched and experienced a wide variety
of holistic remedies and alternative therapies in a desperate attempt to find my
mind, myself and my body. I ran into false avenues of recovery along this path
Many of those things seemed beneficial some times. Several of those therapies
gave me very positive effects. Some of those therapies did absolutely nothing
for me. None of them completely healed me of all my mental health problems.
The problems are called mental for a reason, they arise from the mind, and from
the mind a cure must come. The cure for my mind was deep meditation. I had
studied meditation off and on all my life since my teens but never with a focus
on self therapy.
In my early 20s, left with nothing to lose and nothing worth losing. I gave
myself over to the practice of genuine meditation. Alone, often in total
isolation, over the course of thousands of hours, I went inside my being and
reprogrammed my mind.
I never set out to beat bipolar disorder or any of my other mental illnesses. I
set out to find inner peace. The promise of meditation was the promise of self
understanding and becoming completely comfortable with life and being alive.
More than anything, I needed to have my mind and heart back. I had to find a
reason to go on.
In the process, I undertook a true holistic, yogic lifestyle. A true yogic
lifestyle to me meant, living right, eating right, breathing right, exercising
right, and taking care of myself until I was well again. I looked at myself as
an experiment. The results of experimenting with my mental and emotional health
would be effected by controls and variables.
In order to secure the space needed to accomplish this. I got rid of all excess
detritus and negative forces and stress in my life. Bit by bit, I subjected
myself to these control and variables. I gave myself to the process of healing
and recovery with an open ended time commitment, knowing, that it was pointless
to pursue life, until I had a reason to live. All the things people feel
compelled or driven to do, college, career, family, relationships, romance,
planning for the future, none of that had any meaning for me, and nor during the
course of recovery, could I allow striving for any of those things to interfere
with me. I was living one day at a time since my near death experience. That was
all I could handle.
So as a means to an end I first put extreme physical distance between myself and
everyone in my old life. I moved far away from my family, abusers and mentally
ill people, and any physical location that could possibly trigger me. Then I put
myself in isolation and lived alone for a long time. During this time I began my
health experiments in diet and nutrition. I started practicing tai chi, yoga,
chi gung and meditation full time. Gradually, the constant practice of these
healing arts granted my body and mind enough inner calm and grace to begin
serious, devoted and full time meditation practice. As soon as I was strong
enough, I began the work of going within.
The first thing I did, was learn to relax. Twenty years of tension had ruined my
nervous system and I needed to really learn to let go. Then I processed all the
PTSD triggers until the flashbacks were gone, and no memory had any power over
me. As I underwent this self psychotherapy, I learned cognitive behavioral
therapy and applied it to myself. I combined introspective meditation and
advanced chi gung techniques to permanently dissolve every trigger inside me,
until they were gone as though they had never been there in the first place
Then the first year came and went without any depression whatsoever, for the
first time in my memory. Then the second and third year came and went without
depression as well.
During this time, I worked on anger, loss, abandonment, abuse and violation,
anxiety, addictions, attachments, aversions, attractions, likes, dislikes, and
all my past relationships. Another year went by without depression and now, my
anxiety and neuroses were making similar remissions. This entire time, the
voices in my head became quieter and quieter, less and less overwhelming. The
cacophony, the chorus the storm, was, for the first time in my life,
During the summer of 2000 I went on meditation retreat for a week. Almost six
months later, on the fourteenth day of a personal isolated sitting retreat, the
most powerful meditation and spiritual experience of my life surprised me out of
nowhere and changed my life forever.
Unasked for and unlooked for, I had a direct experience of Self. I came into
contact with what lies deep inside us all. That discovery caused me to fall in
love with myself. It was like being born again. It recharged my spiritual,
physical and mental batteries restoring to me a passion for life and living.
After literally thousands of hours of dedicated genuine and proper meditation
practice, I finally had peace. In that moment of surrender and apprehension, all
suffering left me and never returned. I knew who I was, what I wanted out of
life, and for the first time in 25 years, I knew absolute unconditional self
For days I spontaneously laughed and cried, often simultaneously. I was free and
I could never ever be trapped again in the same way. I knew I would never hurt
myself again. I continued to practice, to keep wiping away the remaining
In the process my mind and the voices in the whirlwind inside my mind stilled
and became calm. I was never manic again. I moved on. I had cured myself of my
past, my present and now that I had a reason to live, I was going to have a
future. I set about making more changes to my life and continued to transform
and transition as a person.
At the age of 31, I had been depression and suicide attempt free for a decade.
The mania was gone, the voices were gone, the triggers where gone. I had ceased
self injuring for good.
All of this I accomplished on my own, largely in solitude and isolation, without
psychotherapy, support or psychiatric drugs.
Finally, I had put my life, my past and my illness completely behind me. Then on
my 32 birthday, I whimsically entered the word *bipolar* into Google. In seconds
I found blogs, support forums, bulletin boards, chats and even personal videos
on you tube, all discussing manic depression and schizophrenia. What I found was
nothing less than heartbreaking and amazing.
While I was out of the mental health scene, meditating and living a yoga
lifestyle in solitude year after year, Bipolar had become a mental health
epidemic. Despite the lack of evidence, this mental illness is being blamed on
genes and biology. The cause is unknown and cure apparently nonexistent. I was
shocked and dismayed to find that nearly 20 years after my diagnoses the
horribly unsuccessful treatment of psyche meds and therapy that had failed me
were still the de rigueur management technique.
When I found out that people of all ages, including children were taking over a
half dozen medications or under going ECT for depression and bipolar my spirit
Everywhere I look, there is supposedly no cure for any of these major Axis 1
mood disorders. Yet I have extracted the cure for severe mental illness on my
own using myself as the experiment. It pains me to read blogs and support forums
and watch videos and see only learned helplessness and hopelessness.
Once I was free of mental illness, and I knew who I really was under it all. I
was able to finish growing up, to re-enter society, network and socialize, make
friends, and finally get involved in personal and romantic relationships after a
ten year break from them.
It is possible to heal yourself of bipolar and schizophrenia, permanently.
Without therapy or drugs. It is possible to shake off the disabling symptoms of
these mental illnesses leaving you with your natural gifts and talents intact.
It is possible to live a life free of medications and the mental health care
profession, once you have learned how to therapy yourself. As a result I believe
that there may be hope for everyone for a lasting permanent recovery from mental
The road to permanent recovery is not easy or fast. At least for me, walking the
path to permanent mental illness recovery was the single most difficult
undertaking of my life. In my recovery, I have taken the road least traveled,
and it has made all the difference.