Richard’s Ash Wednesday Pilgrimage

Billie Holiday Music touches our hearts when words fail.  It allows healing to take place by altering the vibrational field within a room. It can reduce the debilitating effect of a potentially stressful environment and lessens the impact of colds and ear infections during the early months of language acquisition.  This research is documented in the Sensory Rainbow.

Through music the senses are heightened and the ability to receive sensory stimulation is enhanced. In an attempt to establish musical preference or dislike, it is important to offer a wide choice of music which should include spiritual, popular, folk, romantic , classical , cultural indigenous music etc.  The individual’s personal choice will facilitate their relaxation and healing by helping them to painlessly release imprinted memory patterns of past negative experience retained at the submolecular level within the subtle and physical body systems.  Hone your observation skills and watch, wait and listen for preference to be indicated through body language, eye movement, facial expression and vocalisation.

Clients with intractable conditions have often been referred to me as their last hope when other health professionals have withdrawn. This story is about a man who had been incarcerated in a large asylum hospital for many years before he was moved into community accommodation and subsequently referred for therapy because of his complete dependence on care staff to meet his everyday needs, his self-harming behaviour, lack of speech and limited mobility.

Richard was in his early fifties and was physically disabled with learning disabilities.  He spent his day in a wheel chair although I was told that he could walk but didn’t choose to.  No attempt was made to move or vocalise and Richard had difficulty standing alone unaided.  He was unable to feed himself or make choices and spent much of his day in front of the television.  Carers insisted that Richard wore gloves when he went to the bathroom and when he was in bed because he scratched himself severely.

navajo-indian-rain danceTo aid relaxation and improve communication and mobility, it was imperative to establish Richard’s musical preference and after a period of regular visits and time spent observing body language and facial expression, I discovered that his favourite pieces were a Native American Indian Rain Dance  and a Billie Holliday song  ‘The very thought of you.  It helped enormously that his care staff didn’t question my methods and were willing to play the rain dance and selections of Billie Holliday songs for Richard in the evenings before bed.

To encourage him to move spontaneously I suggested that when Richard was asked to stand up, a member of staff should stand behind his left shoulder rather than in front of him. In this way, they would not block his path if he attempted to move forward.  If Richard initiated movement in a particular direction, staff were asked to follow his lead. We were thrilled when he gradually began to shuffle forwards spontaneously.

Break Through

This came during a regular outing to the local supermarket, when Richard was patiently sitting in his wheelchair by the fruit counter waiting for two members of staff to finish their conversation.  At some point, one of them looked back to check on him and saw an empty wheelchair.  Strongly motivated by the fruit in front of him and no longer able to contain himself , Richard had pulled himself up from his wheelchair and shuffled towards the fruit counter focusing on the bananas.  He was discovered, clutching a large bunch of bananas to his chest, which were then purchased for him by his stunned care staff, a wonderful example of Richard initiating and demonstrating his preference.

I continued to visit on a weekly basis and introduced Richard to the Emerald Alignment energy alignment exercise which helped to release fear and anxiety from his mind and connected him to  higher intuitive pathways beyond his cognitive faculties.   The alignment was incorporated into his care plan and Richard was taken through this method by his carers on a daily basis, for which I was truly grateful.   I toned for him on each visit, vocalising the chakra tone for the base and also the vocal tones corresponding to the sacral and solar plexus chakras. The vibration of these tones positively affects the base of the spine, the kidneys, the pelvic area and the digestive system. For information about toning and the Light Voice vocal toning system , see Rainbow Chakra Tones .

Fear and control patterns inhibit energetic flow within the physical body and the subtle energy system (auric or electromagnetic field) .  The vibration of the tone ripples through the body and the envelope of subtle energy  surrounding it, to dissolve and disperse restricted energy  at the cellular level which positively influences thoughts, feelings and behaviour.

For those who would like to know more about the role of perception and belief in attaining optimum health and have a desire to understand the first principles of healing, the Science of Healing manual is available as a free download.  The Anatomy of the Human Energy Field  offers  a comprehensive study of the interface between the anatomy of the physical body and the subtle energy field .

Ash Wednesday Pilgrimage

While outside enjoying the evening sunshine with a member of staff, Richard suddenly stood up from his wheel chair and having shakily steadied himself, began to shuffle forwards.  The staff member, as instructed, placed herself behind his left shoulder to see what would happen next…. walking slightly behind him to avoid blocking his path.  She said that at first Richard seemed to be testing her by moving first one way and then another to see if she would follow his lead….. she did…. He then shuffled his way across the road towards a an adjacent church.

Slowly and steadily, with the member of staff behind him, he shuffled his way through the church gate, up the path  and into the church where the Ash Wednesday evening service was taking place. Richard sat in a pew at the back of the church and somewhat stunned by what had occurred the staff member settled herself next to him.  When members of the congregation left their pew to take communion, Richard got to his feet and shuffled out of the pew to join the back of the queue forming in front of the altar.  (Ash Wednesday commemorates the beginning of Lent where the priest places the mark of the cross on the forehead in ashes as a sign of repentance).  At this point, however, the carer lost her nerve and ushered Richard outside.  Her acceptance of following his lead had reached its limit and her own feelings of discomfort had prevailed.

It is to the member of staff’s credit that Richard had been allowed to choose the church as his destination.  Although he hadn’t been able to follow through and take communion as he was indicating a desire to do, I hoped that his journey to the church and being able to sit inside for an Ash Wednesday service had been a healing experience for him. This was a reminder never to assume the level of understanding of this client group.  It is impossible to know what significance this event had for him however it left a profound impression on the member of staff who had accompanied him.

Ongoing energy alignment for both staff and Richard, helped to sustain the progress being made. His self harming gradually abated as he became more independent. He no longer used his wheel chair because he was strong enough to walk into the local town in the company of a member of staff.  He developed the ability to feed himself and indicated a choice of food through gesture and an emerging vocabulary of single words.  Unfortunately, therapeutic sessions ceased when the management was re structured.

 Several years later, I did catch sight of him walking through a local shop in the company of a staff member with a group of fellow residents, evidence that he had sustained progress and was no longer isolated and alone.

Further case studies outlining my holistic methods of intervention are available to read here

If you have had similar experiences, I would love to hear from you.