The familial predisposition that exists in these instances, not only provide the source of the original event, but also the resource for healing. This resource is found within the infrastructure of the family mythology of previous generations.
The Aims and Objectives of Intergenerational Healing:
To determine which symptoms originated from the history of the family and which were crated during the client's life history. Quadrant one pertains to current narrative. Quadrant two, concerns the client's lifetime data. Quadrant three, maps the angles where valuable information is stored. It answers questions such as, what happens just before we speak, where do we retrieve the information from?
Quadrant four relates to genealogy. This involves a stochastic process, which takes previous unknown family history into account, will at directly on the wounds passed on to a present generation. This process involves pulling-back the information until the relevant information is retrieved. The information usually comes from the family land of origin. It is in from characteristics of the land, the culture, traditions, and religion that the information stems. These are the foundations of influence that have sculptured and cleaved our ancestors and subsequently us.
Each of the components can be applied to a personal map.
The development of a personal map becomes an integral part of the intervention. The ma, crated out of the angles or lines of sight the client holds, is critical in the process of unravelling information. The client's perceptual space is mapped, detailing each angle the client's eyes are drawn to.
Each of the angles accessed just prior to a client answering a question or making a comment, contain volumes of information and open up whole vistas to the client's ancestry.
A personal map is created before an intervention takes place. The data the map provides offers previously unknown structures of why certain beliefs and actions are taken. The mission is to employ the map as the co-therapist, the dynamics of this event will prevent the therapist from contaminating the perceptual space where the client's information is stored. Therefore, preserving the integrity of the space.
As the information is charted, the map will evolve and transform. The client will discover solutions from the map as the information interacts. As a result, the dysfunctional elements will no longer appear on the map. This leaves more available space for the client to use for more current and relevant information.
Quadrant 3 provides a macroscopic view, a bird's eye view of the information. The work is behaviourally based. Where the client observes just prior to answering a question or making a comment is the place where the therapist asks the next question. The specific location where the information is retrieved, contains a prodigious amount of information. These angles and locations provide the foundation of the eventual personal map.
1. Entry: The first question enters the space. And where are
you going when you look there?”
1. Entry: The therapist begins by saying, "Tell me what happened/How
do you feel?" The discussion is conversational.
1. Entry: "And where did [that] come from?" "And what happens
1. Entry: The therapist begins to deepen the information by asking
for a physical location for the presenting symptom or feeling. "And where
Christine has a wide background training in counseling & hypnotherapy, nutrition and art therapy, as well as extensive experience as an aromatherapist. She works as a Stress Management Consultant to individuals and organisations and her publications include her best selling book, Aromatherapy - a Guide for Home Use, are widely available. What follows, is a description of her unique personal approach.
"During the course of my practice as an aroma therapist, I often observed some client's returned with the same condition of complaint, even though our previous work together had produced a satisfactory outcome. This left me intrigued for whilst most client's progressed over time, these appeared to be stuck."
In my search for a solution, I explored other therapeutic techniques and gradually incorporated these into my aromatherapy work. Meta-Aromatherapy emerged as the most appropriate name, [meta meaning change or transformation].
There are often hidden reasons why a condition does not respond to treatment, or why it returns. The root of these conditions remain held in the body as a result of unhealed experiences or traumas, and manifest through emotional, behavioural and physical disease. They are held in body patterns, for example, ares of tension, or through metaphors that emerge during treatment.
The Techniques Involved
Meta-Aromatherapy draws from a range of holistic healing skills to achieve this, thee include:-
Art therapy - prompts the unconscious mind to access the image or metaphor associated with the condition. This may be through free expression in response to an aroma or with a specific focus in the person's life. [Quadrant 2,3 and 4].
Counseling - forms the basis of exploration of images or metaphors. [Quadrant 1].
Hypnotherapy and "Childwithin" - these techniques may be followed by Meta-Aromatherapy massage to enhance the process of resolving trauma. [Quadrant 2].
Caring for the Therapist
Meta-Aromatherapy also has a lot to offer the practitioner. Encountering other therapists in my work, I couldn't help noticing that many were doing great work but were 'burning out' themselves. This led me to explore how I worked myself, as I consistently felt good at the end of sessions. As I analyzed my work, I realised I maintained an acute awareness of how I used my own body while working. I could release any tensions as they arose in myself an provide a free space for the client to release their held pattern.
Untying Knots with Metaphors
A client may complain of a tightness in the stomach. Having worked with aromatherapy and discussed the client's lifestyle in a previous session, it is found that although the tightness disappears with massage, it returns after a while. The facilitator would proceed with aromatherapy massage, choosing the oils as appropriate from the consultation.
The next step would be to locate the point in the body where the experience is held, and obtain the associated metaphor. This will give vital clues to the hidden cause of the condition. The metaphor is then activated or empowered to bring about a resolution. During this time the facilitator applies aromatherapy massage, using the gentle touch techniques. Various images and feelings may arise which are addressed using the appropriate quadrant say, quadrant two, childwithin, which promotes the release of the held patterns in the body. Client's voices and facial expressions often change to reflect the age which they are accessing. This transformation continues as old patterns safely release.
The emphasis is on empowering the metaphors to allow them to complete their work. For example, a tightness in the stomach is, "like a knot." The initial reaction may be to held the client release the knot. However, the knot is there for a reason and can be empowered to perform some useful task.
Meta-Aromatherapy is applicable in a variety of cases. For example, a client having had a cartilage operation three years previously, still experienced pain to the extent she was uncomfortable when her leg was touched. Following the initial session of developing the metaphors that represented the pain, I had no problem working on her leg. She said she couldn't believe what we were doing would work, but went along with it, laughing for a great deal of the session as her metaphors emerged!
Meta-aromatherapy can bring a profound healing for the client and offers a creative and revitalizing approach for the practitioner.
Christine Westwood's involvement in natural healing with plants began in 1982 whilst working in an herbal apothecary at the Findhorn Foundation i Scotland. She subsequently trained with Robert Tisserand and was a founder director of the Tisserand Aromatherapy Institute. She has also trained in Art Therapy, Counseling & Hypnotherapy, Nutrition and Reiki. Within her busy London practice she has developed the synthesis of these skills called "Meta-Aromatherapy." Aromatherapy for deep transformation.
Prior to her work as a healer, Christine worked as a qualified Accountant in the City of London. She researched and developed Stress Management techniques and a Stress Management Consultant has helped individuals from many organisations achieve their full potential. Individual treatments, company training and retreats are available.
Christine runs trainings in the Lake District, North Devon and London. For further details, contact Christine at her London practice.
This article was originally Published in "Aromatherapy Quarterly"
and is © copyright
Christine Westwood. A longer article by Christine on the same subject is available at: Healing Unresolved Trauma Through Meta-Aromatherapy
Each edition of the Retreat Centre Newsletter will feature a guest writer who will describe the theories and practice of their work. Frequently this will include elements of the work of David Grove and how therapists are incorporating his theories into their practice in some very specialised areas. There will be occasions when the contributor will provide an article on a subject adjacent and indirectly linked to therapy. These areas will include: ethobotany, history, mythology, science and literature.
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