It’s late at night, you’re walking home on your own. You know you have to walk down the ally and into the estate to get to your flat, and you know that they will be there waiting. You can hear their voices. Your shoulders tighten, your knuckles turn white, and you can feel the fear in the pit of you stomach. Your head bends, your pace quickens. Somehow you have to get through them. But tonight something strange happens; the fear in the pit of your stomach begins to growl. It’s not fear any longer, it’s a large Siberian Tiger and it’s walking beside you. You can feel its power; its presence is almost overwhelming. As you approach your tormentors they move away, they give you room. Maybe they don’t notice you; maybe they don’t want to notice you. You feel strong, confident and powerful. You are not alone; you are walking with your “Power Animal”.
In this work, you will be shown how to access states of deep relaxation, where you can see, talk to and go on journeys with inner guides, usually animals, that spring up spontaneously when you focus on different parts of your body.
The aim is to offer every participant an opportunity to discover the feral strength, wisdom and power that lives within them and to craft it into an expression that can direct and inform their own lives.
As human beings, much of the time we are unknowingly controlled and directed by our subconscious and unconscious, which in turn are being directed by our life experiences, especially those of our early childhood. As a result we sometimes feel that something is missing in our lives, even when everything is going well. When things are not going well, we may feel lost, desperate, hopeless or worse.
We can re-establish a sense of harmony within ourselves and with others. Latest developments in guided imagery provide a direct and an effective means for accomplishing this.
The Personal Totem Pole Process© is a unique blend of the theory of active imagination which was developed by Dr. C. G. Jung, the Eastern theoretical orientation which understands the human being as a system of interrelated energies or chakras, and the Native American practice of speaking to and learning from the animals.
In this process a person is guided using deep imagery to encounter an animal in each chakra or energy centre. The condition of the chakra is reflected by the particular animal and its circumstances. In some cases an animal is seen to be caged or injured which indicates that the energy is not as free or as healthy as it should be. In others the strength and stability of the chakra is evident. When all the chakra animals have been reached they are brought into a council in which they work toward each other’s growth and health. In doing so they typically raise issues which the person has not adequately faced, but is now supported and even coached in doing so. As the person faces the issues the animals grow, and as the animals grow and come to be more supportive of each other, the individual feels a growing harmony and centeredness in his or her own life. The inner support of the chakra animals comes to be deeply appreciated and richly felt. The work is deeply healing and transformative as the animals know how to guide us with precision through the sequence of experiences that lead back to our own original wholeness.
In working with the animals we begin to:
• – understand and accept ourselves more,
• – discover facets of ourselves previously inaccessible,
• – deepen our awareness to a merging of conscious and unconscious
• – become more in harmony with ourselves, with others and with the universe.
Use of this process with clients has shown that it effectively and efficiently brings about the resolution of longstanding conflicts and leads to a newfound maturity.
The value of this process for someone who has already done much growing is that it clearly indicates the strengths of the person’s component energies and the relationships between them, and provides guidelines for further work.
International Institute for Visualisation Research