Privilege and its neurochemical pleasures: why it matters and how we can hack it

In cultural somatics we understand that: the systemic IS somatic. That is to say, that macro-level systemic oppression is really an embodiment of micro-level individual trauma. This simple framework allows us to apply learnings from somatic psychotherapy directly to healing at collective scales. Today, I want to talk a little bit about how this cultural…

Read more

When the personal isn’t that political: what we can learn from the Rubber Hand Illusion about hyper-sensitization in activist communities

Even as a therapist and consultant who specializes in working where trauma and social injustice meet, I have always had some suspicion about how the connection between relational dynamics and systemic oppression is talked about in activist spaces. My primary concern with this has been about how dominant social justice discourse tends to completely skip…

Read more

Imagining ancestral justice

What happens to a people when they lose their ways? Well, one thing we do know is that they lose their medicines. They forget the names of plants and other beings in their world that can help them restore their balance. They forget the rituals that are able to activate the natural healing mechanisms of…

Read more

Understanding ‘accountability abuse’

‘Accountability abuse’ is an abuse of power pattern that happens when we take on self-policing roles within a community without the appropriate checks and supports for ourselves. For me, accountability abuse is a more succinct way to define violent behaviors that tend to be categorized under ‘call-out culture’ or ‘cancel culture’, spanning from brutal accountability…

Read more

Universal Basic Income: considering the economics of healing justice

More and more, we are coming to understand that it is nervous system dysregulation that leads to violence to ourselves and others, and that individual and collective healing are inseparably connected. We are realizing that the urgency and vigilance that fills our lives, which fuels us through cycles of hyper-productivity and burn out, tears our…

Read more

Believing survivors isn’t the same as holding their trauma

CN: Discussion of racial and sexual violence I want you to know that, even as I write this, I’m a survivor of childhood abuse. Being received and believed by others has been a big part of healing all aspects of this. I firsthand understand how healing it can be for survivorship to be believed. I…

Read more

Why justice needs ritual: on the sacred origins of harm

NOTE: This article contains graphic depictions of childhood sexual abuse as well as other possibly triggering material. Please read with care. Everything we do is sacred I would like to start off this post by sharing an experience I had on Lekwungen territory in the November of 2017, that taught me about the inherent sacredness…

Read more

The Revolution Will be Titrated

In my emerging practice of cultural somatics, I hold that the key to facilitating restorative/transformative justice processes is not so much about having the right ideology and systemic analysis, but what we somatic practitioners refer to as ‘titration’. Titration is a word from chemistry that means to facilitate chemical reactions by only adding small amounts…

Read more

The key to healing whiteness is understanding cultural somatic context

A SPECIAL NOTE ON ‘WHITENESS’: This article refers a lot to whiteness. Heck, its in the title. If I am honest with you, I have lately been developing a lot of weariness around how language such as whiteness or (toxic) masculinity can imply a person’s body is the source of violence. As a somatic therapist, I…

Read more

Mitochondrial activism and the alchemizing of selfishness to love

NOTE: If you need a little biology brush up, mitochondria are organelles in our cells. Their main purpose is to convert food into energy. They have their own DNA and are theorized to originate as bacteria. There is a lot of discussion within our activist community these days about subjects like emergence, call-out culture, slowing down, healing,…

Read more