As we approach Spring Equinox and enter a stage of rebirth, naturally, we are ushered into a new beginning. Continuing to align ourselves with the innate process of nature, we may feel called to dive deeper into our subconscious. With this, we rediscover, renew, or revive our truest selves. To encourage this inward journey of remembering, there are several modalities that support us to step further into this kinetic rhythm of life, guiding us to the path of least resistance. Though, there isn’t only one way to initiate this journey.
Just as we have planes, buses, trains, cars, bikes, and boats to travel. There are various modes of transportation into the subconscious mind. The following methods utilize an altered state of consciousness which may provide us with a window of opportunity to not only achieve personal transformation but to reawaken the soul.
Metamorphosis Through Psychedelics
With books like, “How to Change Your Mind” by Michael Pollan, psychedelics are becoming realized for their profound abilities to enhance, rewire, and evolve the mind. Research has shown that psychedelics can encourage the brain’s ability to change and adjust through a trait called neuroplasticity. With entheogens like psilocybin, there are even potential benefits after just a single dose.
Moreover, therapeutic use of substances like MDMA, DMT, psilocybin, and ayahuasca, is showing promise for those suffering from depression, PTSD, anxiety, and other mental conditions. Reports of psychedelic use with proper set and setting, suggest long-lasting enhancements in personal growth, sustained personal meaning, self-awareness, and spiritual significance. With the recent rise in media coverage, along with the late decriminalization, and clinical research, these self-discovery tools are becoming more accessible presenting us with a new way to achieve human metamorphosis.
Energy Healing and Personal Growth
This alternative practice stems from the belief that humans are composed of energy. These energy centers and subtle energy bodies can be manipulated in a way that restores the balance and flow of energy throughout the mind, body, and soul. In more popular forms of energy-work like Reiki, we notice that energy healing has been practiced for thousands of years with some modalities dating back to the 20th century. Though energy healing is compiled of several schools of thought, there stands one commonality, the ability to heal through energetics.
Varying techniques like channeling, transmissions, and activations allow participants of energy healing to achieve profound benefits. In KAP otherwise known as the Kundalini Activation Process, several clients report visualizations, kinetic movements, emotional and mental release, bliss states, and even lost conception of space and time. Following the experience, clients have explained spontaneous alignments, realizations, and newfound perceptions of life. Energy work, in its many forms, is re-tuning and balancing your energetic self into alignment. This often acts as a catalyst for deeper personal transformation.
Reawakening with Hypnosis
Hypnosis is a willfully induced altered state of consciousness. Therapeutically, it is typically used to recover suppressed memories or to even allow modification of certain undesired behaviors. Participants of hypnosis have expressed entering a “trance state” where they no longer possess the power of voluntary action and are highly responsive to suggestion or direction. With approaches like Quantum Healing Hypnosis Technique (QHHT) or past life regression, clients have often described having visions or “revisiting” past lives. This unique experience offers some participants a deeper understanding of themselves and the opportunity to let go of what is no longer serving them.
Connecting with Breathwork
Various methods of breathwork may induce trance states that allow for greater awareness and connection to self. Holotropic Breathwork is an alternative practice that produces life-altering mystical experiences for those seeking to gain the therapeutic benefits of this altered state. Holotropic Breathwork was developed in the 1970s by Stanislav “Stan” Grof, M.D., a psychiatrist, and LSD researcher who has greatly inspired the field of psychedelics and consciousness. He founded this technique alongside his wife Christina Grof, who has written over 25 books on non-ordinary states and the human psyche.
Some participants of this unique modality, express profound experiences that increase self-awareness, relaxation, reduce stress, and even prompt enlightenment and personal transformation. Even more so, research has displayed that this practice can reduce death anxiety, increase self-esteem, and improve behavioral issues. It’s no surprise with Stan Grof being a co-founder of Transpersonal Psychology, a sub-field in psychology that combines the metaphysical aspects of the human experience with modern psychology, that his innovation of Holotropic Breathwork synthesizes that exact method.
Sensory Deprivation and Self-Discovery
Widely known as a “float tank”, a sensory deprivation tank is a soundproof container filled with saltwater. It was founded by John C. Lilly, M.D., a scientific researcher who has made significant contributions to understanding psychoactive substances, psychology, and human consciousness. Lily’s motive with this design, was to gain an understanding of human consciousness through deactivating external stimulation. His discovery gained momentum with the interest of other researchers, and commercial float tanks were introduced in the 1970s.
Now, Lily’s concept is offered worldwide. Studies have demonstrated that float therapy may decrease depression, stress, anxiety, and pain while increasing the quality of sleep. Equally, there have been several correlations between mindfulness and altered states of consciousness during float tank experiences. Many users have claimed to have hallucinations and enhanced creativity. Others have reported transcendental experiences, spiritual insights, euphoria, and increased overall well-being. With all the external stimuli in our everyday lives, it’s no wonder sensory deprivation tanks catapult us into an altered state of mind, creating space for us to explore our inner selves on a much deeper level.
Inner Awareness In The Anechoic Chamber
Similar to sensory deprivation tanks, the anechoic chamber is designed to reduce external stimuli. Completely eliminating sound and electromagnetic waves, an anechoic chamber allows you to experience complete sound deprivation. To keep outside noise out, and inside noise entirely absorbed. The design features a room covered by sound-absorbent fiberglass wedge. The chamber is so silent that it registers a negative level of decibels, which is below the capacity of human hearing. Users have expressed that it’s so silent that they can hear their body’s functions. Some visitors report hearing their heartbeat, digestive system, and even their blood flowing within their body.
Out of body experiences have also been reported, along with mild hallucinations after experiencing the chamber after only a few minutes. Moreover, many participants have expressed post-experience benefits, like changes in perception, new-found awareness, clarity, and peace of mind.