The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma

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spiros

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Semrad taught us that most human suffering is related to love and loss and that the job of therapists is to help people “acknowledge, experience, and bear” the reality of life—with all its pleasures and heartbreak. “The greatest sources of our suffering are the lies we tell ourselves,” he’d say, urging us to be honest with ourselves about every facet of our experience. He often said that people can never get better without knowing what they know and feeling what they feel.

I remember being surprised to hear this distinguished old Harvard professor confess how comforted he was to feel his wife’s bum against him as he fell asleep at night. By disclosing such simple human needs in himself he helped us recognize how basic they were to our lives. Failure to attend to them results in a stunted existence, no matter how lofty our thoughts and worldly accomplishments. Healing, he told us, depends on experiential knowledge: You can be fully in charge of your life only if you can acknowledge the reality of your body, in all its visceral dimensions.

Bessel van der Kolk, The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
Bessel van der Kolk - Wikipedia


 

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