Follow by Email

Sunday, November 1, 2009

"Healing the Trauma of the Body/Mind Split through Accessing Instinctual Gut Feelings"

The following is the first 500 words of the introduction to an article by Silver Love, MA, MA, PMA, and was published in the Spring 2008 Somatics Magazine. We encourage all our blog participates to read this article in it's entirety (obtained from Somatics Magazine, Volume XV Number 4, at: http://www.somaticsed.com/cgi-bin/search.cgi?specific=Title&phrase=magazine+vol.&cart_id
=10-30-11.25748&scores=75&search_type=&yes=62) as it fills in the data needed to understand our scientific investigation and research on the gut responses and instinctual human somatic responses. All copyrights of this article are reserved for Somatics Magazine and the author, Silver Love. Permission is given to viewers by the author to make a copy of this article for educational purposes only (that is anyone who wants to read it and learn from it) and all material used must be accredited to her authorship. Also note that both the research and findings at SSU on the Somatic Reflection Process are included in this article, as well as a protocol for facilitating the Somatic Reflection Process to access gut responses and provide the healing of trauma and to promote good health. A printable copy is also published on http://careerstorefront.angelfire.com/somatics2.html.




Healing the Trauma of the Body/Mind Split through Accessing Instinctual Gut Feelings: A Protocol for Facilitating the Somatic Reflection Process (SRP)
By Silver (M.C.) Love, MA, MA, PMA.

To my surprise last spring, an article titled “Gut Almighty”, which briefly explained the latest emotion theories on how intuition comes from the gut, was featured in Psychology Today (Flora, 2007) at the same time that my article on gut instinctual somatic responses and healthy life choices was published in Somatics Spring 07 issue (Love, 2007). I wondered if two articles published on the gut in one month might surely be a record, as the gut has not seemed to have so much attention in the media since Gershon’s (1998) book acclaiming it through his neurological research to have a mind of its own.

In the months I awaited the publication of my article, I reread Gershon’s (1998) book and it was again delightful to me to read that a scientific investigation actually uncovered evidence that the gut has a separate capacity to generate and record vital responses and functions as what he calls our second brain. Gershon outlines the biological functions of the gut as being its own intelligent brain and having its own vitality that is in communication with, but not dependent upon, the head brain. As I combed through his book and shared emails with my colleague, Robert Sterling, it became quite clear to us that Gershon’s work was supportive of the clinical findings in the work we did as guidance counselors in the 70’s. Our work centered around assisting people to assess the meaning of their experiences through an awareness on the empty-full instinctual feeling responses that they identified in the gut region of the body. We found with the people that we counseled that these gut responses were linked to the dynamic struggles of balancing the two needs of the person for acceptance and for feeling in control of one’s own responses (the freedom to respond naturally), and that these two needs were instinctual and necessary to fulfill on a moment to moment basis for continued vitality of the person. Similar to Gershon’s findings, it was also our conclusion that the gut area of the body contains a feeling response center that holds a relationship to the thinking processes of the person, but is a separate response center from the thinking head responses and certainly not dependent upon it.

Feeling inspired by Gershon’s (1998) work and the attention recently given to the gut in the literature and media, I decided to write a second article for Somatics that further explains the specific technique of the Somatic Reflection Process (SRP). The intention of this article is to answer the questions about the process that I have been asked in the past year by many friends and colleagues who read my first article last Spring on the findings of Robert Sterling’s and my somatic work as guidance counselors. I am including both the method and a protocol for facilitating the SRP, as well as a brief summary of a recent research study using the SRP protocol presented (Love, 2005).


Click on a book cover below to go to Amazon to Buy:


"Increasing Intuitional Intelligence" is available on Amazon USA and Amazon UK
as well as Amazon,de and Amazon.fr  other international Amazon sites


"What's Behind Your Belly Button?" is also available on Amazon USA and Amazon UK

as well as Amazon,de and Amazon.fr and Amazon.CA and other international Amazon sites

and it is on The Book Depository with free international shipping.


If you are on the homepage of this blog, click word "comment" directly below to see all comments and make one yourself! If you are on the webpage for this post, then simply post in the box provided below.

 

"Using Somatic Awareness as a Guide for Making Healthy Life Choices"

The following is the first 500 words of an article published in the Spring 2007 in Somatics Magazine by Silver Love MA, MA, PMA. We thought it would be helpful to include it on this blog for those interested in how our research and studies of the gut brain and our basic instinctual needs developed. We suggest that our bloggers read this and the article in its entirety (obtained from Somatics Magazine, Volume XV Number 2, at: http://www.somaticsed.com/cgi-bin/search.cgi?specific=Title&phrase=magazine+vol.&cart_id
=10-30-11.25748&scores=75&search_type=&yes=62) to fill in the details of our scientific discovery. The second article will also include the findings of the qualitative study made at SSU on the Somatic Reflection Process. All copyrights of both of these articles are reserved for Somatics Magazine and the author, Silver Love. Permission is given to viewers by the author to make a copy of this article for educational purposes only (that is anyone who wants to read it and learn from it) and all material used must be accredited to her authorship.


Using Somatic Awareness as a Guide for Making Healthy Life Choices
By Silver (M.C.) Love, MA, MA, PMA.

In 1973, I was career counselor in a progressive and humanistic-oriented college, Santa Fe Community College, in Gainesville, Florida. People were coming to me in a career center for guidance with feelings of emptiness and confusion concerning their career choices. They were more aware of what the external world, including parents and other authority figures, would find acceptable for them to do with their lives than what they themselves felt they would like to do. In fact, I quickly discovered that most people I counseled had no idea as to what their own inner needs were and how to identify them. Feeling called to explore this problem, my colleague, Robert Sterling, and I spent the next five years developing a process of self-awareness that would be useful in helping people to find a reliable, inner reference upon which to base life decisions.

Using the term principles in the same manner that Johnson (1986) uses this term in the original sense of the meaning as “beginnings” (p. 4) or the sources of discovery, I would like to share the underlying principles of our work. These principles were found by examining how we developed our work and the mysteries that intrigued us and led us to develop a strategy or technique for working with others. I would like to share these principles because they hold a key to somatic awareness that is still unexplored today, yet much needed to understand our true inner nature, both individually and collectively, and to illuminate us in choosing a path of unity, creativity, and health for ourselves and as a human family.


Accessing the Body’s Internal Record of Inner Needs

Many people seeking our career guidance expressed to us that they had an inner conflict between what they thought they should or should not do for a career and what they felt about it. To explore the source of this inner confusion, we first turned to Jung’s (1959) theory that there are two distinct rational functions of judgment in the psyche —thinking and feeling. He points out the problem of the one-sided dominance of the thinking function as happening when the feeling function becomes dependent upon thinking. In this case, feeling is merely kept as an accompaniment to thinking, which may learn to operate around an external system of thought that conflicts with the feeling function. Thus, the person’s thinking may not be relevant to what is valued internally and may be divorced from the awareness of the body and its needs. In this case, thinking dominates and the feeling function is suppressed. It appeared that many people we were seeing were suffering from the domination of their thinking function and expressing the emptiness that domination caused. We postulated that if a person is overly dominated by externalized thinking that suppresses the awareness of feeling values, the organism suffers because the person’s inner needs are not met.


Click on a book cover below to go to Amazon to Buy:


"Increasing Intuitional Intelligence" is available on Amazon USA and Amazon UK
as well as Amazon,de and Amazon.fr  other international Amazon sites


"What's Behind Your Belly Button?" is also available on Amazon USA and Amazon UK

as well as Amazon,de and Amazon.fr and Amazon.CA and other international Amazon sites

and it is on The Book Depository with free international shipping.


If you are on the homepage of this blog, click word "comment" directly below to see all comments and make one yourself! If you are on the webpage for this post, then simply post in the box provided below.

 

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Acknowledging the Enteric Nervous System in the Gut To Provide a New Image and New Myth of Humanity

Robert Sterling wrote the following response to my comment on our last post written by him on this blog. I think he brilliantly lays out the underlying basis by acknowledging the ENS for a new myth for humanity that the late Joseph Campbell challenged us to explore and create:


You are correct the old myth doesn’t fit any more. This myth has been so thoroughly institutionalized; so much written about, based upon the various versions of the myth in many cultures; many professions are based on its mystery; and many innocent young people have died for it, that it has become a fact of life in many minds which are not open for discussion. However, the old myth must give way to a new myth based upon new discoveries of clinical psychology and modern medical research.

The old myth temporarily solved the mystery of human nature by looking outward toward another mysterious world, the unreachable unknowable heavens, for centuries. Since space travel, and sensory confirmation, that heavenly place of rest has been brought into serious question.

A new myth has been offered by clinical experience and medical science, this time looking for answers to the mysteries of human nature toward the inner world of the human body. This sensory conformation is made possible through the use of psychology, of electro-chemistry, gene patterns, modern research techniques, scientific instrumentation and, human intuition. As the result of this research effort, the story qualifies as a myth, since there are still many more unknowns-mysteries of human nature-to be examined.

The change of myth for the individual involves a change of images of the human Self. The image of the old myth is a person with one brain with a single central nervous system, which requires an external source of control to manage the duality of its personality-the Self with a dual personality of good and evil.

The new image of the individual involves two sources of intelligence, the upper brain with its central nervous system(CNS), and a second brain with its separate nervous system in the gut, the enteric nervous system(ENS) (Gershon, 1998). This second intelligence center provides the inner source of organismic self-control when properly nourished throughout the growth process. The mystery of this second center of intelligence, involves the DNA/RNA, installed at conception, and entered into every cell as the new organism develops. The concept of good and evil disappears from the image and Self Control and Self Acceptance takes its place when the inner needs of the organism are fulfilled (Love, 2006, 2008). When cultural attention is directed toward a full life for each child in his/her early learning experience, there should be far less concern for his future behavior as an adult.

The new image includes the fact that the second center of intelligence is installed during the development of the fetus and is completed and operating at birth. While only the neurons for potential neuro-sensory growth of the (CNS) are available at birth; the intelligence of the upper brain is dependent on the post-birth development of the externally directed sensory skills (sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell are dependent upon the quality or the environments to which the newborn is exposed). Thus, the upper brain cavity is essentially empty at birth and fills as experience is obtained on a “first come first served” basis-pretty much “the luck of the draw.” (Eliot, 1999).

Because of these temporal differences in the development of the human organism — the second brain first and the upper brain last — we postulate that the Second Brain (Gershon, 1998), the gut brain, contains the stabilizing influence — the feed back of its wisdom gathered over eons of time (and of the two brains, it is the most likely link to archetypal human history) and the wisdom of its stability, its experience maintaining the specie. Thus, this feed-back becomes the built-in direction toward the organism’s destiny.

Under normal conditions, the two centers of intelligence work in harmony together sending signals of conditions in each other’s domain. The sensory signals are normally strong and multiple while the signals from the inner gut are feeling and are easily overwhelmed by the senses, and easily ignored without special attention. It is this special attention we seem not to have learned or are loosing, which seems to be the cause of the communications disconnect between the two centers, and this deprives us of our needed directions.

Under conditions of stress, the gut brain can become a disturbing influence to the upper, externally directed brain. When the outside environment fails to meet the needs of the organism, or the upper brain attempts to distort the directions from the second brain, depending on the degree of stress, the inner second brain can reduce the energy available to the organism, thereby causing it to reconsider. There seems to be a constant dialog between the two brains at all times. This constant feed-back produces an interesting set of regulating qualities of behavior and suggest that it is the possible sources of ethics, morality, and the boundary conditions of Acceptance and Control of the Self and of others, and of other forms of life (A Reverence For Life), as described by Albert Schweitzer in the last century published in the periodical Christendom (1 [1936]: 225-39).

We have certainly described a new image if not a basis for a new myth of humanity. We have also taken the liberty to utilize our combined intuitive processes to carefully examine the material on which our intuitions are based-a combination of thinking and feeling intelligence from both centers
relative to the factual material as we understand it. We would welcome a dialog with anyone.

References:

Eliot, Lise, PhD, (1999). What’s going on in there? How the brain and mind develop in the first five Years of life. Bantam Books.

Gershon, Michael D., M. D., (1998). The Second Brain, Your Gut Has a Mind of Its Own. Harper Collins.

We welcome your responses and dialog.



Click on a book cover below to go to Amazon to Buy:


"Increasing Intuitional Intelligence" is available on Amazon USA and Amazon UK
as well as Amazon,de and Amazon.fr  other international Amazon sites


"What's Behind Your Belly Button?" is also available on Amazon USA and Amazon UK

as well as Amazon,de and Amazon.fr and Amazon.CA and other international Amazon sites

and it is on The Book Depository with free international shipping.


If you are on the homepage of this blog, click word "comment" directly below to see all comments and make one yourself! If you are on the webpage for this post, then simply post in the box provided below.