Healing

01/05/2019
Dr Lewis Mehl- Madrona with Barbara Mainguy of the Coyote Institute for Studies of Change and Transformation.

The Healing Power of Story: Lewis Mehl-Madrona

Lewis Mehl-Madrona is a man I greatly admire and his book Healing the Mind Through the Power of Story is well worth a read. Here is an interesting section from the book: ‘The narrative movement in psychiatry is concerned with understanding the stories of pain and suffering told […]
24/04/2019
The Creek by Simpson Kelly, c1948, pastel on paper, 18.5 x 24 cm. Noel & Lily White Collection, Berndt Museum of Anthropology.

Intergenerational Healing: Joe Solanto

Putting the finishing touches to this blog in a hotel in Reading, UK, before returning to Australia tomorrow. It’s been a wonderful month seeing my children, grandchild, brother and family, cousin and his wife, and close friends. It’s back to working on the Carrolup project next week, after […]
16/04/2019
Johann Hari, author of Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression - and the Unexpected Solutions.

‘Lost Connections’ by Johann Hari

Some of you will that I was a neuroscientist for nigh on 25 years, working in the field of the brain neurotransmitter dopamine. I was fortunate enough to work with one of the world leaders in neuroscience, the late Nobel Laureate Arvid Carlsson, and to run my own […]
03/04/2019
Johann Hari and his book Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression - and the Unexpected Solutions. Image from crikey.com.au.

Can a Cambodian Cow Facilitate Healing?

I’ve just finished reading an excellent book, Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression – and the Unexpected Solutions by Johann Hari. I can strongly recommend the book, which focuses on a ‘radical’ – and very sensible way – of viewing depression and overcoming the problem. Depression is […]
26/03/2019
Bessel van der Kolk, M.D, author of The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma

The importance of safety and reciprocity in mental health

In my last Healing Blog, I recommended highly a book by Bruce Perry and Maia Szalavitz entitled The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog: And other Stories From a Child Psychiatrists Notebook. Another seminal book about the healing of trauma is The Body Keep the Score: Brain, Mind, and […]
13/03/2019
The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog by Bruce Perry and Maia Szalavitz.

Relationships, Connection and Healing from Trauma

For anyone interested in the healing of childhood trauma, I strongly recommend you read, The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog: And other Stories From a Child Psychiatrists Notebook by Bruce Perry and Maia Szalavitz. Here is a description of the book from the back cover: ‘What happens when […]
05/03/2019

The Impact of Colonialism on a Young Aboriginal Australian

Here is an excellent description of how colonialism impacted upon a young Aboriginal Australian as summarised by Richard Broome in his seminal book Aboriginal Australians: A history since 1788. ‘In Dareton, new South Wales, In 1965, eleven-year-old Malcolm Smith and his brother ‘borrowed’ pushbikes leaning against a bus shelter and went […]
21/02/2019
One of my favourite places, Rhossili Beach, Gower Peninsula (my home for 14 years), South Wales, UK. Click on photo for wider panorama.

Factors That Facilitate Recovery From Addiction

Here’s an article I wrote for my Recovery Stories website almost six years ago. The factors facilitating recovery from addiction described here are also important for helping people recover (heal) from mental health problems and traumatic experiences. I hope you found the article of value: ‘There are a […]
19/02/2019
Smudging is incorporated into some Aboriginal cultures’ healing practices as a method for cleansing and purifying. Northern Journal, Canada.

The Meaning of Healing

In 2008, the Aboriginal Healing Foundation of Canada published an important report, Aboriginal Healing in Canada: Studies in Therapeutic Meaning and Practice, based on research in five healing programs across Canada. One of the aims of this research was to gain an ‘understanding of the meanings and processes […]
05/02/2019
Leaning tree by Milton Jackson, pastel on paper, 41 x 33cm, c.1949. Noel & Lily White Collection, Berndt Museum of Anthropology. [WU7568]

Pathways to Aboriginal Healing

The first step in re-establishing healthy communities is to acknowledge and understand the impact of the colonial legacy on the lives of Aboriginal people today and the various pathways necessary for healing from historical trauma, using both cultural and contemporary understandings and processes.’ Helen Milroy, Pat Dudgeon and Roz […]
26/01/2019
Judy Atkinson, Member of the Order of Australia (AM)

Judy Atkinson: Member of the Order of Australia (AM)

Huge congratulations to Judy Atkinson, who today becomes a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for her services to the Indigenous community, to education and to mental health. This is such wonderful news, truly well-deserved.  As I have said a number times, Judy’s book Trauma Trails: Recreational Song Lines […]
21/01/2019
The Cockburn Range near the Pentecost River. On the right, you can see our transport and campsite.

The Healing Power of Country

The present blog is based very closely on one I wrote in September 2018 for my website Sharing Culture. Sharing Culture is an educational resource I developed in 2014 to help facilitate the healing of intergenerational, or historical, trauma. It was inspired by my reading of Judy Atkinson’s […]
18/01/2019
Dr. Vincent Felitti, co-founder of the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) study.

How Childhood Trauma Can Make You A Sick Adult

As I described in my last Healing blog, one theme which is at the heart of the Carrolup Story involves the removal of Aboriginal children from their parents. Today, we know that adverse experiences in childhood can impact powerfully on a person’s physical and psychological wellbeing many years […]
15/01/2019
Bruce Perry, a psychiatrist, is the Senior Fellow (and Founder) of the ChildTrauma Academy in Houston, Texas, USA.

Six Core Strengths for Healthy Child Development

One theme which is at the heart of the Carrolup Story involves the removal of Aboriginal children from their parents. These children became known as the Stolen Generations. This did not just happen to most of the children at Carrolup, but occurred to Aboriginal children across Australia, and […]
09/01/2019
Eilean Donan Castle at the entrance of Loch Duich in Scotland.

A Journey Toward Recovery: From the Inside Out

Some of you will know that I have worked in the addiction and mental health field for over 40 years, spending the first 25 years as a neuroscientist working on the brain neurotransmitter dopamine. I eventually closed my laboratory because I: (1) stopped believing in disease models of […]
11/12/2018
Screen capture of an image from the film 'We Shall Remain' by The StyleHorse Collective.

‘We Shall Remain’ – The StyleHorse Collective

WE SHALL REMAIN was created to address the effects of historical trauma in our tribal communities. Many times, these untended wounds are at the core of much of the self-inflicted pain experienced in Native America. Much like fire, this pain can either be devastatingly destructive or wisely harnessed […]
08/12/2018
Carrolup School, a healing sanctuary during the time that Noel White was teacher, May 1946 - December 1950. Photographer: John Stanton, 26th November 2018.

Recovery From Trauma – Judith Herman (Part 2)

In my Healing Blog postings, I’m going to use a lot of quotes and film clips of people who I consider to be experts in the field, people like Judy Atkinson, Bessel van der Kolk, Bruce Perry, Judith Herman, James Gordon, Karen Treisman and Gabor Maté. Their words are […]
06/12/2018
Some of the Carrolup young artists. Front row: Reynold Hart (Far Left), Parnell Dempster (Middle) and Revel Cooper (Far Right). Back row, 2nd Left: Barry Loo. Do you know who the other boys are?

Good relationships are the key to healing trauma – Karen Treisman

In my last Healing Blog posting, I took a quote from Judith Herman’s classic book Trauma and Recovery about the importance of relationships in helping a person recover (heal) from trauma: Recovery can take place only within the context of relationships; it cannot occur in isolation. In her renewed connection […]
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