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John Ruskan's
Emotional Clearing

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Perhaps you’ve heard of EMDR. It’s a psychotherapy that has been gaining a lot of attention over the past few years. I’ve read Francine Shapiro’s book, EMDR, and have spoken with a few of the EC Counselors who are also EMDR certified. (You need to be a licensed therapist for their training). The focus in EMDR is to use eye-movement to release emotions. In recent years, they have departed from eye movements and use tapes instead. How does this work?

With the original eye movement technique, the therapist would tell the client to hold the emotional memory in consciousness, and move the eyes back and forth, from right to left to right, and so on. At first, I believe they asked the client to follow the finger of the therapist, then they told them to just make the movements with no coaching. Francine stumbled upon this technique one day while walking in the park, she says, and the rest is history. In the book, she admits she doesn’t know why it works, but maybe at this point they have more insight. As for the tapes, the content can be starkly repeated beeps, or music with water-rushing sounds, but the important element is that something be moving back and forth, from left to right again. You need to wear earphones, and the effect is to again draw your attention from side to side.

Any one of you has probably noticed by now that there is an alternating stimulation of left and right brains effected by this technique. This alternating stimulation has the effect of integrating left and right brain, and allowing trapped emotions to release, first into awareness, and then into balance, because in many ways, the lack of integration of emotions is paralleled by the lack of left-right integration. But the movement of the eyes is probably not really the important element for the activation of the integrating mechanism, all you have to do is focus on the third eye, as I have described in Emotional Clearing.

This third eye mudra is of the ancient practice of yoga, and it is traditionally taught that one of the benefits is left-right integration, as well as activating the witness, and this is how we use it. In EC, you sit either by yourself or with a therapist who is able to impart energy to you, and one of the important steps in our healing process is the focusing on the third eye. As you hold this in your awareness, the feeling issues that you are addressing begin to integrate, or release.

 
 

© 2004 John Ruskan / The Institute for Integrative Processing