From Soul Pain to Transformation
©Terra Martin, B.MSC, HT, CCAC, SAC Dip, 2017
The soul pain that we experience following traumatic grief is a process where we feel separate, alone, apart and disconnected. We feel non-existent. Some of us feel we are suffocating and drowning in our grief as we wrestle with issues such as beliefs of life, death, spirit, and soul. Nothing around us makes sense as we struggle to find meaning in our experience and the purpose for the rest of our lives. Obtaining help of this nature is hard to find within the health care system and even in the religious systems as they rarely address soul pain. Many helpers within those systems are not willing to go that deep nor do most of them know how to. When soul pain occurs, joy, happiness and laughter have fled. This searching, longing and brokenness is common to people who have suffered this type of soul pain. We are like the Golden Buddha in Thailand that was covered with clay; underneath this clay is its golden self. The more we remove the outer layers of our pain and let go of worn out beliefs that no longer serve us, the more we can rediscover our true selves and our wholeness. The pain of this journey is our transformation. Like the caterpillar, we come in on our belly and move into a cocoon where, through the processing of our beliefs and soul pain, while uncomfortable, causes us to change and transform from what we once were into what we are now becoming. We move then into the next phase, which is accepting that nothing will ever be the same again. Our journey of finding our new essence and our new spirituality is a process of finding the Divine.
Helping During Times of Soul Pain
©Lori Pollard, RN, BScN, MN.
Our soul encompasses our unique gifts and talents; therefore, it provides us with a specific individual purpose to life. When traumatic grief shreds our soul, we are left with soul pain. The wholeness of our soul is broken, put on hold, or lost altogether. We struggle with meaning and ask ourselves what is the purpose of our life now. Our soul pain breaks our trust, filling us with anxiety and fear, leading us to not trust or love ourselves or others. Through this experience, we struggle with hope; when we have no trust and no hope, we do not have the ability to take risks. To heal our soul pain, we need to take that risk; as it moves us forward towards healing of mind, body, emotion and spirit.
As healers, it is important for us to be spiritually developed to do this work and not let our own personal beliefs get in the way. As well, we need to let go of our need to ‘fix’ our clients and to let them work through and reclaim their own power. It is imperative we genuinely, intently and actively listen to our client’s story about their soul pain, as this augments the beginning of their soul work. Creative activities can be helpful in the healing soul pain process, for in them are metaphoric messages for soul healing and growth, allowing the person to once again feel a sense of belonging and find a purpose in their life.