My experience of ‘accountability abuse’

While I have made numerous public statements on many of the incidents that I describe below, I realize that something I haven’t really done yet is to truly let myself take up the role of a survivor of accountability abuse (the manipulation of social justice discourse on accountability to propagate harm) and write on my…

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Somatic pathways for animist connection to place and body

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about my ancestral traditions of Japanese folk animism. For those who may be new to Japanese spiritual traditions, Shintoism, the official animist ‘religion’ of Japan, that declares it a nation of “Yaoyorozu-no-Kami (八百万の神)” or 8 million spirits, has multiple strains that reflect Japan’s history of class and racial-cultural struggle.…

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Undoing traumatic bonding: responding to claims of harm in the post-#metoo era

A note on scope: The purpose of this article is to simply introduce a few new ideas and get us to think more critically about how we respond to claims of harm in our communities overall. It isn’t necessarily to try to give all the answers. A short article like this can hardly cover all…

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On somatics being an Asian practice

I want to share something with you in this article that I, as an Asian person and somatics practitioner, believes is critical for us students of modern/Western somatics understand the work we do. I often refrain from speaking from my specific racial-cultural position as I understand how often that can mean usurping the power of…

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The cycle of ‘Orientation-Differentiation-Integration’ in animist-somatic healing

Over the last few years of working on the development of an animist-somatic practice, often alongside my frequent collaborator Dare Sohei, I’ve observed that we may see there are three pivotal points of the trauma resolution cycle. These are orientation, differentiation, and integration. In this piece, I would like to share a model for trauma…

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Three essential lenses for developing a cultural somatic practice: neurology, attachment, and animism

This article is written as a guide for people who are newly interested in a practice sometimes referred to as cultural somatics and want to know how to set their bearings for their journey. While it is perilous for any one person to claim to have nailed down the foundations for an emergent work such…

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On activist trauma-bonding and cultural codependency

This article assumes you have some basic working knowledge of attachment theory. If the term is new to you, you can go here to read more. One of the key aspects of the cultural somatic approach I employ is to understand oppressions, not necessarily just as socially programmed thoughts and actions, but as cultural attachment…

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A cultural somatic reader on whiteness, trauma, and allyship (includes free webinar)

This is a compilation of selected articles that I’ve written over the last four years, plus a free webinar, on the subjects of whiteness, trauma, and allyship. Particularly, within these works, you will be introduced to what we call a ‘cultural somatic’ framework, a constellation of ideas pivoted around the fundamental principle that groups of…

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The cultural somatic paradox: why we struggle to understand each other

The last few years of my private practice has heavily focused on helping people better understand their relationships across different identity lines such as gender, race, class, and so on, in an epochal time, where there has been so much mass proliferation of vocabularies such as privilege, intersectionality, and identity politics. Using a foundationally neurobiological…

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A Funk Lesson: If life is a dance, violence is a choreography, but so is justice

… A white woman sees a black man. They call police officers on him. Then the officers murder the black man. Then the officers go free. Then the masses rise up. They are met with resistance from the state. They clash. Eventually, the masses become quieter. They burn out. They reorganize. They grieve. Then a…

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