And The Brain
The brain is a growing evolving
organ that is not complete until one is 18 years old. As you know,
all brains aren't created equal. Our brains uniquely shape and form
themselves to our life experience from the day we are born. Capacities
within the brain like artistic abilities that are seldom used, atrophy,
while the parts of the brain that are used develop to a fuller extent.
Although it begins with talent, genius is nothing more than focused
attention. A mathematician who focuses full attention on mathematical
computation for long periods of time lays down numerous neuronal
pathways into the area of the brain that relates to mathematical
ability. The more they focus their attention on math, the deeper
and more developed the neuronal pathways become. The same is true
for every other area of genius there is, including self healing.
Anyone can be a genius in their field if they focus attention long
enough on their area of interest.
The brain is like a muscle that must be used. The rule of thumb
is: if you don't use it, you lose it. The ability to self-reflect
and do inner work are also seeded in the brain. If you have never
spent time reflecting on your life experience or doing the inner
work necessary to understand how you are creating your reality,
your neuronal capacity to do so will be limited. With limited capacity
to understand yourself and what motivates you, you will be unable
to figure out how you are creating your pain.
Think for a moment about children who are neglected or abused. Many
children are like sponges who aren't yet capable of discerning the
difference between right and wrong. If they are raised by the media
in front of the TV, they might accept at face value all that they
have absorbed without question if there is no one to help them reflect
upon what they have watched. If children are being physically, emotionally,
or sexually abused by adults who are supposed to create for them
a safe, loving, nurturing environment, these children may be unaware,
until they are much older, that there is a different way of being
in the world.
When this is the case, the parts of their brain that deal with connection
and affection atrophy, while the parts of their brain that lead
to separation and a fight, flight or freeze reality are accentuated
and developed. Whether this abuse is a result of family dynamics
or other influencing factors, "the stress it creates can set
off a ripple of hormonal changes that seem to permanently wire the
child's brain to cope with a malevolent world. Through the chain
of events, violence and abuse pass from generation to generation
as well as from one society to the next." (Scars That Won't
Heal: The Neurobiology Of Child Abuse, by Martin H. Teicher, Scientific
American, March 2002)
Someone whose brain is wired to defend themselves against an unfriendly
world will create a perceptual point of view that will color everything
they see, think about, and experience. For the adult, creating perceptual
change becomes a monumental task, not because they are unwilling
or unable to do so, but because they literally have to rewire their
brain to see and experience an entirely different world.
Any stroke victim who has had to relearn how to walk or talk can
tell you just how difficult this is, for it takes consistent, concerted
effort to reclaim the parts of the brain that have been effected
by the stroke. In order to rewire their brains, adults who were
previously neglected or abused must reclaim the thoughts, beliefs,
attitudes and feelings that they would have had if they had lived
a more loving, nurturing and beneficial childhood. By doing so,
they exercise the unused parts of their brain that weren't previously
stimulated. This can be challenging if they have not yet created
a life that feels loving and beneficial to them, for it will feel
as though they are telling themselves a lie. In other words, if
they have created an external reality that feels as painful and
unloving to them as their childhood home, which is not uncommon,
they won't have any reason to tell themselves a story that is different
from the one they have always known.
Once I realized that the hard wiring in our brains construct our
perceptual point of view, I began to understand why mental, emotional
and spiritual healing is so difficult. We literally have to question
what our senses tell us before we can begin to heal. By reminding
ourselves over and over again that there might be another way to
interpret this situation, we can begin to see life differently.
Through self-examination, you can get a handle on what your habitual,
automatic responses are. When they occur, you can use them as red
flags to remind yourself that there might be another way of seeing
this experience. Little by little, as you begin to question your
perceptions and see things differently, you lay down new neuronal
pathways into the parts of the brain that will allow you to reconstruct
the world in a more positive way. For those of you who would like
to undergo ascension in this lifetime, there is no other way to
do it. That is because we are not "going" anywhere. All
that we can do is "recreate" what is already here.
I used to have a lot of depression. Because of all the reading I've
done on the brain, I now know that my limbic brain, which is the
emotional center, was impaired. Because I had been depressed since
early adolescence, my lonely, hopeless way of viewing the world
was second nature to me. I constantly told myself a story, which
I never questioned, that verified my painful perceptions. This negative
story actually impaired my limbic brain, making it difficult for
me to change.
About fifteen years ago, I went on a spiritual journey to discover
my higher self soul. I began to experience an inner world that was
populated by angels and guides who wanted to help and heal me. Though
my rational mind told me I was "just fantasizing," I loved
hearing their sweet words of love, encouragement and wisdom. They
led me to teachers who taught me how to go back to traumatic instances
of my past so that my child self could express pain, rewrite the
script of life, and heal.
In time, the wisdom of angels and guides, along with the emotional
healing they guided me to do, began to counteract my negative story.
In effect, these "figments of my imagination" caused me
to question the way I perceived my reality and ultimately to "cool"
and heal my limbic brain. Eventually my depression lifted. However,
each time I would re-experience a "fall from grace" by
going back to my negative story, the depression would return.
I finally realized that it wasn't my life experience that was making
me depressed, but rather it was what I told myself about my life
experience that had the negative impact. By choosing to see things
darkly, I impaired my limbic brain at a very young age, which caused
me to feel all the symptoms of clinical depression. I was eventually
able to heal myself with inner work and conscious self-reflection
that was motivated by a spiritual belief system that taught me that
my life had a higher purpose.
In his book Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, Dr. Daniel G. Amen,
M.D. says that we must realize that our thoughts are real: "You
have a thought. Your brain releases chemicals. An electrical transmission
goes across your brain. You become aware of what you're thinking.
Thoughts are real, and they have a real impact on how you feel and
how you behave." (Random House Books, 1998, pg. 57) He then
goes on to clearly state that healing the brain is a three fold
Damage can be caused by many factors, including early mental, emotional,
physical, sexual, or religious abuse occurring through the age of
eighteen, blows to the head at any time during life, including birth
trauma, certain diseases like strokes, and sometimes genetic factors.
If the damage is bad enough, one may have to take drugs to activate
the parts of the brain that have been impaired. However, drug therapy
alone is is never enough, for one will continue to re-damage the
brain through the stories told about themselves if the stories aren't
changed. Therefore, in addition to drug therapy, which is only necessary
when the brain is severely impaired as is the case with mental illness,
one must also do both cognitive/behavioral therapy and psychotherapy
before one can be healed.
Cognitive/behavioral therapy is needed because it is the kind of
therapy which helps one question belief systems and change attitudes
toward life, building both the personal and social skills which
lead to a greater ability to respond to the challenges of being
physical. Psychotherapy is useful because it helps one express and
process the pain of child-hood and the traumatic experiences of
For those of you who are attracted to non-traditional approaches,
it is my understanding that hypnotherapy, EMDR (eye movement desensitization
and reprocessing), holotropic breath work, and other non-traditional
therapies can do the same thing. In addition, attitudinal healing
groups, meditation exercises, and other spiritual/religious teachings
can help in this department. Dr. Amen goes on to say that depending
on the severity of physical impairment, people who must take prescription
drugs to activate their brain while doing their inner work may be
able to wean themselves off the drug treatment after their inner
work is complete.
In my case, I could not have healed myself without developing a
spiritual belief system that allowed me to see my life from a higher
perspective. I also needed to experience the love of my higher self
and soul before I was comforted enough to heal. I believe that at
some level (mostly unconscious) we are all creating our entire life
experience, even the bad parts, and that we do it for a positive
purpose: because of what we can learn.
Sometimes, what we have to learn isn't fun. When this is the case,
only loving, nurturing, non-condemning words can set us free from
the burden of negativity. When we learn how to heal ourselves by
counteracting the negative stories we tell ourselves with a more
positive, loving one, process the traumatic experiences of our past,
and rewire our brains consciously, we become empowered enough to
meet our full potential and become all that we were created to be.
It is then that we are able to make our ascension into the heavenly
realm, which, for all those who have the eyes to see, has always
been right here on earth. One's journey into healing is a fascinating
adventure. Once one clearly understands how to do it, doing it becomes
much less mysterious and healing is then possible to achieve with
commitment and vigilance.
Vaughn is a local teacher and lecturer. She regularly holds classes
in The Art Of Conscious Evolution and has written courses for UMS.
Visit the Christine Breese website to read articles on consciousness and awakening, visit University of Metaphysical Sciences Video Satsangs to see talks on spiritual subjects. Read articles on Wisdom of the Heart Church. Visit Starlight Journal for blogs, newsletter, and forums on spiritual subjects. Visit Christine Breese's Metaphysical Sciences youtube channel to view free video satsangs.