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Part 2; Alpha-Theta Neurotherapy As a Multi-Level Matrix of Intervention

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Alpha-Theta Neurotherapy has made manifest what a research team, Elmer and Alyce Green and Dale Walters, at The Menninger Foundation told us in the 1970's: i.e. causing the brain to generate theta activity daily over a period of time seems to have enormous benefits, including boosting the immune system, enhancing creativity, and triggering or facilitating "Integrative experiences leading to feelings of psychological well-being" (Green, 1974; Hutchison, 1992). The protocol seems to transcend the patient's lack of motivation to change, incapacity to create internal visual imagery or disbelief in the effectiveness of the treatment. Frequently the patient's experience and results far exceed the goals targeted (in the visual imagery). Entering this deeply altered alpha-theta brainwave state seems to create a link to the subconscious where a wider scope or vision of the "True Self" without its ego adaptations is contacted. Beyond overcoming addiction, the treatment evokes in the patient shifts in behaviors, attitudes, relationships, health, mental acuity, improved job performance and creativity. When the rational mind enters the slower, more coherent, brainwave range of theta and surrenders to the mind field (the subconscious and the superconscious), the brain/mind system seems to be enabled to go through a dramatic and profound reordering process much like that described by Illya Prigogine as "escape to a higher order" (Dossey, 1982; Hutchison, 1992). The ego's defenses are bypassed and the patient may "observe" a past traumatic event which may in some evoke a cathartic reaction. Other patients, may remain an observer without any emotional response, while in others change occurs without specific flashbacks of earlier trauma. A higher functioning of the mind is accessed enabling the brain (the computer) to open to the mind field (energy) and transcend the lower functions of the brain (logic, memory, defenses), moving out of the realm of the conscious reality to the realm of the transcendent. A dramatic personality transformation frequently takes place as clinically observed and reported by the patients and their families and documented by the pre and post testing results of the MMPI-2 and the Millon II.

The positive balancing effect of this process seems to work despite the severity or multiplicity of diagnoses making it a particularly advantageous treatment for dual diagnoses with addictions and making it applicable to a range of diagnostic conditions. On the physiological level, with the process of "letting go," bracing of the autonomic and central nervous system is reduced, apparently leading toward homeostasis. Further, with this "letting go" there is less reactivity to the events of one's life. An external locus of control is exchanged for an internal locus of control. The external self becomes congruent with the validated internal reality.

To quote Ellen Saxby (1993):
"(this protocol)....is an invitation to connect with the ontological ground of one's own being....I have begun to feel that the flight into the Self is the most powerful and the most healing aspect of this work. I have come to believe that the True Self exists or resides in negative space and that it is in a sense "is not" or is "no thing" and what becomes established in ordinary reality is the image of the self - the self image. In the shattered and bruised mirrors that we have available to us, the image of the Self becomes tattered and contorted. If our whole attachment of consciousness is to the image, then the whole of our reality limps. Once we unglue ourselves from that perception - that of the image - and have the experience that actually a portion of the self always remains in the domain of unmanifest reality and is no way tarnished or bruised because there is no mirror in the realm of direct perception, then consciousness becomes freed up, as it were, and has the potential to walk without a limp.

"While it is true that many things occur during the process of Alpha-Theta training, I feel that this is perhaps the core piece that derives from the very nature of the self and once having gained a glimpse of our primary reality, the addiction to all of the processes that shore up the image have the potential to simply fall away, being no longer needed. One can then connect with the flow of truth from the deepest levels of reality and begin to create the most wholesome and sweet form of homeostasis which can potentially manifest itself in every aspect of our being, the physical as well as the emotional and the mind. We can discover that, while anchored in linear consciousness, by allowing this kind of emergence of awareness, we can draw continually from inner realms of intelligence all sorts of remarkable possibilities."

Multi Dimensional - "Beyond Biofeedback"
Many years ago, Elmer and Alyce Green (Green & Green, 1977) offered a foundation for the power of this protocol in their book, Beyond Biofeedback, and indeed we seem to be working in a realm that is "beyond biofeedback." As we examine this intriguing therapy, it appears multi dimensional. We see its effects on our patients at the personal levels of their being: the Physical, the Emotional, and the Mental. We share in their experiences of their Subconscious and its release of deeply repressed memories from their forgotten past. We have admired the insights of their Superconscious, which we relate to their spiritual and transpersonal selves. From the domain of their spiritual selves, we find their "witness consciousness" or their Silent Witnesses, their Resource Selves, and their Inner Healers. We revel in our patients reports of their experiences with what they call their Guides or their Higher Power. We are fascinated with the many different forms of their transpersonal experiences as they experience the energies and colors of pure beingness. We delight in their Healing!

Figure 12. From the original trauma this protocol moves the patient from the imbalances and dysfunctions through the abreactions and insights to balance and healing.

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Dr. White, a licensed Clinical Psychologist in the State of Texas, is Founder and Clinical Director of The Enhancement Institute, Houston, Texas, which focuses on neurobehavioral wellness. Dr. White, past president of the International Society for (more...)
 
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