Anxiety, Medication and the Holistic Alternative by Anusha Amen-Ra
Our society doesn't have a concept of Self-Mastery. The closest to this in western society is that a person achieves a high degree of education in a specialty. But this educational attainment is much different than what we would call "Self-Mastery". There are plenty of people of very high education who commit suicide, or engage in crimes or violence, etc.
To experience the essential aspect of Ones Being is what the practice of spirituality is meant to accomplish. The Ancients defined the essential aspects of Ones Being as peace, love and happiness. If you are not experiencing that, then you are not connected to the essential aspects of your being.
The problem for us here in western society is that everything is compartmentalized and not integrated. The heart doctor is separate from the kidney doctor or the doctor who deals with the lungs. The other issue with modern methods though is that their ways of bringing the body back into balance and into harmony with the whole are not methods at all, but simply drugs. And drugs, no matter how much they effect you, can never bring you to balance or wholeness, or help you to be in touch with the essential aspects of your being.
Anxiety as Fear
Whatever you love, grows. We all have fears, but if we commit to growing and evolving, we can overcome those fears and master ourselves.
The degree to which a person has fears and entertains those fears is the degree to which a person does not grow and evolve. Given this fact, any program that doesn't address fear and how you deal with it, will only have a temporary success with anxiety.
A Holistic Approach is the only real formula for successfully addressing anxiety. Medications currently available are very harmful to the brain and nervous system. In fact those medications are actually brain-disabling and ultimately don't work.
For people dealing with anxiety, one resource is Sacred Space Retreats in Cloverdale, CA. In providing support for anxiety we look at anxiety from a Holistic point of view. Many people have been suffering from anxiety all of their lives. Some may have only recently developed issues with it. Many times people have tried to use medications for anxiety, which can create a big challenge to ever really deal with it effectively, because bio psychiatric medications that are used for anxiety can be very addictive. These medications actually give you the anxiety that you are taking it for.
No matter who you are and what you have gone through, here is what is possible: It is possible for you to regain your ability to be calm and to experience inner peace. Why ? Because that is your true nature. In our society we don't support people in mastering themselves. This is the philosophy and concept of the ancients. This is how, and ultimately why the pyramids were built. In order to build a pyramid, a person, a group or people would have to become One.
In understanding how to solve anxiety it is important to understand it. The main factors contributing towards anxiety are the mind, and the breath. When a person is anxious, their mind is racing and they are not breathing well. They may have stopped breathing all together.
There is a type of movie genre called "Suspense" movies. They call it suspense because when the movie suspends or stops, the audience stops breathing.
Our most peaceful state that we are thought to experience in our lifetime actually comes before we are born. While we are in our mothers womb. There the temperature is perfect, and even the sounds are muffled. When in the mothers womb we are in paradise. Then the big event happens and things are never really the same, at least for the that part of ourselves that can become attached to the past.
When we are traumatized or experience trauma it causes our mind to work more on a beta frequency of flight or fright. This also corresponds with the suspension of the breath. This then causes the mind to race. That racing action on the part of the mind creates more issues of anxiety. It becomes a vicious cycle that the person becomes caught in. Something triggers the mind or the breath, possibly a present time trauma, or it could be a trauma from the past. This then causes the person to stop breathing, their mind to race, and other physiological events happen as well, such as nausea, etc.
There are other factors that may also contribute to anxiety such as smoking cigarettes. Certainly many, but not all people who have anxiety are, or have been smokers in the past.
But smoking certainly can throw off a persons breathing cycle and get them to breath more shallow and in the chest. It's the fast breathing in the upper chest which then causes the mind to race. The two really can't be separated.
Are you out of your mind?
Attachment brings suffering. Ultimately we are in our mind most of the time. But our greatest happiness and clarity comes when we are not in our mind. But we have become attached to our mind and the thoughts that it generates. And it is this attachment that creates our suffering. Until we are able to disassociate from our minds. it will be difficult if not impossible to grow spiritually.
Our minds are a problem solving devise. And as result it is always looking for problems to solve. Most peoples minds are completely out of their control. If you are not running your mind, then your mind is running you. Gaining control of ones mind is a matter takes practice and exercise. Most people have not practiced controlling their minds because most people have never heard that you can do that. Our minds are not who we are. Our minds are like a run away train. Its always going somewhere, but never actually getting us there. And it is our identification with the mind that traps us, and makes us suffer. More importantly though is that starting from birth we create a narrative in our minds of our fears. No matter who we are, we all have a narrative in our mind about both past and future events that we believe to be true, or are afraid of happening. And we believe and respond to this narrative as if it was true. The narrative of future events is the script of a movie that we are watching. But not only are we watching the movie as the audience, we are the ones who actually wrote the script. Not only that, but we are also the actors in the play and the director of the play. In other words, our lives are a script that we have written about our fears, and they are very real to us. Whatever you think about, you create. And so it is that we create our fears and create our own reality. You create what ever you focus on! To change that reality, you have to change what you focus on in your mind. To do that you must first truly understand that your mind is not you. It's just a problem solving device that is in overdrive tying to protect you against the fears you have crated in your mind.
There are reasons we have problems in life. Problems like pain, discomfort, disease, as well as our emotions, are all given to us for a reason. It's so that we can learn from them. It's so we can evolve as a person into something much more then just our individual self. And so we are given tests in life. And the tests help us determine how we are going to respond. We are actually given options in life all the time, but for the most part it seems we take the easiest, or fastest way out of the problem.
Fast Food Lifestyle
Our lifestyle is becoming increasingly fast. Computers get faster every few years. We are looking for faster ways of accomplishing more and more. As a culture we have fast food restaurants in every city and town. And when we go to the doctor for the problems this fast-paced lifestyle causes, he gives us a pill. Like a magician, the doctor is there to make our problems magically disappear. The problem is however that the symptoms may disappear, but because it's really just a magic act, it only lasts so long before they reappear.
There are many medications for anxiety. But unfortunately they really don't work. At least not in any sustainable way. So lets understand something about these medications.
Each medication has its "therapeutic dose." For some medications that therapeutic dose might be a single dose. For others it might mean taking it several times before you actually start to feel its desired effect. The problem with that is that the "therapeutic dose" is also the "toxic dose." Your brain and nervous system has had to adapt to the drug. And as it does so, you begin to feel "less anxious", it seems to stop the sense of a "panic attack" for awhile. So for a brief time you seem to be out of the woods. But if you don't keep taking your medication, it will return. Doctors most often prescribe medications like Benzodiazepines ("Benzos"), which are your Valium, Xanex , Klonipin, etc. And if you start taking them, they can be your worst nightmare that came true. Because what happens now is that not only do you have the problem of your original anxiety attacks, but you also have the fact that your brain and nervous system builds up a tolerance for the medications and so you have to take more and more to get the desired effect. And now after all of that, you start to experience the anxiety all over again. But now it's an anxiety that is even more devastating then before, because now it is a "drug induced" anxiety. It's called Tardive Akathesisa and, in fact, it represents the fact that you may have brain damage as a result of the drugs.
Dead End Street
Medications are just that, a "dead end street," because they only get you so far and then they punish you for having fallen for the trick in the first place.
Light at the End of the Tunnel
Yes there is light at the end of the tunnel if you want to heal your anxiety and if you want to Master yourself. The first step to Self-Mastery is that you have to get off of all drugs. Only then can you truly find yourself and experience your true power. Here is where a Healing Retreat or Holsitic Detox Retreat at Sacred Space Retreats in Cloverdale, California can be helpful to you. Mastering oneself means integrating yourself with the Universe. It is giving yourself the time and attention that you deserve. Its about giving yourself love.
When I talk about Self-Mastery what I am talking about is becoming One with the Universe. And what better place to truly experience the Oneness of the universe then to be in a pristine part of nature. Nature is the healing. It can detoxify you like nothing else can. Your own peacefulness, calm and happiness is mirrored by nature. Nature is perfect. If you go down to the mountain stream you will see birds, and plants, and insects. You will see the blue sky, the trees, and you will see how everything is connected to everything else in a perfect way. Seeing the perfection in nature is easy to do. Now put yourself in nature along with everything else. You are just as perfect. We will provide you with the tools to use in your quest to Self-Mastery. This is how you give yourself love—by giving yourself the time and attention that only you can give yourself. It's only when you give yourself this level of time and attention that all of your problems or "symptoms" are seen for what they truly are, a sign of you being out of balance with the universe.
Give yourself Love
This is love. And what ever you love grows. And if you love yourself by giving yourself this level of time and attention, then your symptoms will go away, but more importantly your authentic self can shine through.
You were born with something that only you can bring into this world. By aligning your soul with your personality, and by listening to what your emotions are telling you and not running from them or deadening them with drugs, you begin to get the message, and your life becomes in balance. You then are able to connect with the peace, love and happiness that is your true nature. That is who you are and your life won't be truly complete until you can experience that.
Getting to this level of knowing yourself is quite challenging, particularly if you have been taking medications. Going some place to get help is also challenging because most people, including many program administrators have not committed to Self-Mastery. What they have most often committed to is being an authority figure where they can exercise control over someone else. Most people are out of control so they go to Rehabs to get control over themselves. The problem is that when you use a method of control that is a power over others and not power coming from the inside out, then it becomes like a parent-child relationship. Parent-child relationships don't really work to help a person evolve. In fact that level of relationship is what gets people stuck in their child-like self. If your administrators are parent-like figures, then it means you become the child-like figure in that relationship. It creates more of a relationship based on dependency and once again, dependent relationships are what we are evolving out of and away from. So in order to do that, you need to have a program that is more evolved than that. In addition to this, most places don't have an understanding of the true brain-disabling effects of anti-anxiety medications.
Sacred Space Retreats
Using Rehab techniques that were developed in the 1950's may not be the answer to your evolving needs now. Self-Mastery is something that is achievable in this lifetime if you make a commitment to it. Just knowing that this is possible will give you more power to take the next step. We look forward to you joining us at Sacred Space Retreats in Cloverdale, California.