Sunday, January 15, 2012

Gluten Free Thoughts at the End of the World

Detoxing from gluten at the moment, as I go gluten free once again, as per doctor's orders. And I am reminded once again that gluten functions very much like an opiate for people with gluten sensitivity and when going gluten free there can be serious withdrawal symptoms, from dizziness to depression. This may be why many people who have trouble processing trauma turn to bread and cookies for relief. It literally numbs you out at the neurotransmitter level.

My experience in withdrawing from gluten is that it also brings up a bunch of old stuff to be processed. I find this in general with cleansing and deep detox. I remember during my first intense detox, I was also doing my advanced counseling skills training intensive for my masters in Transpersonal Psychology. I did not plan it that way, the two just "happened" to overlap. We were doing group processes all day and I cried at the drop of a hat throughout. It was like I had no filter, no barrier between myself and whatever triggered my emotions. A barrier that was usually well in place. I realized then that something about the food I was eating was acting as an emotional shield. But I also had many breakthroughs and memories of things I had forgotten coming very close to the surface during those two weeks. As a trauma survivor, some of those pieces were important for my own healing.

Physical detox can be a very effective way of accessing the parts of the emotional body we usually silence with food. Gluten and sugar being the two main food drugs of choice for many. There was a therapy center when I was living in London during the 90s that dealt with survivors of serious trauma, not just childhood trauma, but war trauma and torture- serious end of the spectrum stuff that survivors usually shut off. One of the ways they used to help people get in touch with repressed trauma was sleep deprivation. They would run a week long therapy group, during which they did not allow the willing participants to sleep much and around day three "stuff" began to pop out of people's psyches. A die hard approach and not for the faint of heart, but same concept. The idea is to take away some of the ways in which we naturally defend ourselves from challenging and psyche-splitting material. Not suggesting anybody here tries this at home without psych-support from a trained professional, but sharing as this is often the opposite direction we go in as a society.

As a society we are sitting on humongous amounts of pain. Pain from faulty child rearing practices, starting from the very first time we are hang upside down and slapped at birth, to school systems where grades count more than true soul development. Work and economic environment of an increasingly corporate world, in which the psychopathic and the narcissistic are promoted and rewarded. Unstable family units often split by divorce, from which more pain is generated. Not trying to be depressing, but just pointing out that, for many reasons, especially at the level of mass consciousness, we are sitting on an avalanche of unprocessed emotional material, which, as a society, we are constantly engaged in keeping at bay, with things such as sugar and gluten foods, alcohol, cigarettes and psychiatric drugs- and encouraged to do so, as happy slaves make good workers - the fact that its all artificial happy does not seem to matter for the functioning of the "machine".

Wearing one's pain is also seen as a negative thing. People in pain are often judged, marginalized and told to get a grip or get medicated. We are not given the time to process grief , loss, sorrow and setbacks. Even the new spirituality does nothing but point fingers at people who are not smiley happy at all times, which can result in even more isolation, because even sharing of difficulties with spiritual people, often leads to being judged or lectured. I dare to say that much of the new spirituality is nothing but a quick fix approach to a "produce - be happy- be successful" route to consumerist based goals.

But this is not a post on new age bashing. Nor a gripe about the ills of the world. More instead an observation of where we are at, as a collective, as the dysfunctional ethos upon which much of our current world set up is based is coming to a close. Our world as we know it,  is collapsing in many ways, and with the death of the American dream and so many people going belly up financially or having huge difficulties holding it all together, many are no longer able to self soothe with externals. We are being brought face to face with our pain, sense of loss, sense of failure in a world that has trained us to think that the only thing that counts is an external form of success. And this is true also for the spiritual people, as so much of our current spiritual mindset of late, has been transformed into the spiritual equivalent of a get rich quick scheme, where what one creates counts more that who one is.

As the props that keep our inner pain together vanish under the tidal wave of change, we will have to dig deeper for our true sense of worth. There will be no more hiding from our inner shadows and for that which lurks under the surface, unhealed.

We are all together wading through our own version of collective sleep deprivation trauma healing workshop. And together we are challenged to let go of the dysfunctional ways of judging ourselves and one another which we have picked up from a society that teaches us to be separate and to prove ourselves to one another through what we have achieved. We are being challenged to move into a new paradigm, that is all about being authentic, frailties, failures, warts and all, where who we are counts more than what we can show in a portfolio or a resume. We are moving into a time in which the inner quality of who we are is the only currency. 

This is the stage of our life as humans on the planet, in which we learn about collective compassion. Where we learn to hold our own and each other's journeys in the heart, with all its ugliness and with all its beauty. It is a very Plutonian time, where no stone is left unturned.

The end result is ultimately a coming into oneness, where all journeys are one journey, that we travel as one. A journey into self love and the acceptance, knowing that all the externals are just props on a stage we set up for our own self exploration into meaning. But props that don't define us and that we can shed at any time. Just the container for a Soul story that wanted to be told.

Wishing you well on our shared journey into the next phase of our world :-)

much love


Copyright 2012. Katie Gallanti, MS, MA., All rights reserved. Share as a link to this blog with authors name and website links displayed. 


Lisa Allen MH said...

Wishing you the absolute best on your detox Katie, that is so HARD!! I know you will be better for it and I am thinking of you. Thanks for yet another one of your thought-provoking posts, reminding us all we need to face the real reasons underlying our collective coping mechanisms!

Katie Gallanti said...

Thanks AarTiana for your feedback and support :-)