Applied Energy Therapy (TM Pending)
By Mary Stefanazzi
‘Energy’ is a word commonly heard in therapy circles and one I find myself using more and more frequently in my work. What is new then you may rightly ask? On closer questioning as to what people mean by their use of the word ‘Energy’ I have found that as a general rule they are none too clear as to exactly what is meant. In my experience this vagueness can lead to valuable information being lost, i.e. information relating to the source of dis-ease in a persons life or work, and how to assist them re-connect to their innate healing potential.
Applied Energy Therapy
Supported by the belief that real change or healing can happen when we follow and trust what our energy is telling us I have named my approach Applied Energy Therapy (TM Pending). The Oxford dictionary definition for each of these three words is self-explanatory and serves to sum up my approach.
Applied – Practical rather than theoretical.
Energy – The strength and vitality required for sustained activity.
Therapy – Treatment intended to relieve or heal a disorder.
To clarify further, my use of the word ‘Energy’ in this context, is as defined above. In my work at times, I refer where appropriate, to the electromagnetic field (the aura and the chakras). I do not limit my energy work to this aspect alone.
My methods came about as a result of various trials over the years, mainly on myself and close colleagues. The qualitative criterion for the resulting approach is simple – it works! Comments from those who have tried out my ideas are generally that they are very simple, quick to learn, require no in-depth knowledge of the theoretical background in which they are grounded, and they work.
What of the theoretical background? The basis for my ideas comes from an integration of my training in: Raja and Hatha Yoga, and the core teachings of a range of reputable healing disciplines – in particular that of the Way Mark Centre, Psychotherapy, Supervision, and last but by no means least – life experience!
I will now refer to how others have described the influences of invisible forces/ energies and the resulting effect on our lives. Val Wosket discusses: “the importance of a lapse in energy, which is not merely the result of fatigue, in throwing important light on the dynamics of the relationship between counsellor and client.”1
Omraam Mikhael Aivanhov suggests that:
Until man develops the organs designed to put him in touch with more exalted entities in higher, subtler regions, his knowledge will be severely limited. He may talk, write, explain, criticise, and pronounce judgement, but he will always be in error because he will know only one side of reality. If he wants to grasp the whole of reality he must succeed in awakening other faculties which have always been there, within him, but which are still asleep, waiting till he is ready to use them. 2
Dr William Collinge observes:
Real forces are moving within our bodies and the world around us – unseen, unheard, and some undetected by even the most sensitive scientific instruments. While an understanding of subtle energies has been part of many cultures and spiritual traditions for millenia, western science is now only beginning to acknowledge they exist. They have become the focus of study in disciplines as diverse as physics and psychology, engineering and medicine. 3
The late Peter Gill, founder of the Way Mark Centre in Ireland, describes:
the super-sensible worlds of energy we are embedded in and how we can react to their impulses and messages. We can go with them and they can protect us or further our well-being. By being connected we can be warned of impending danger to ourselves or others, and sometimes anticipate and stop the onset of some dis-ease or illness. We can become more conscious and co-operate with higher intelligence. We can benefit by paying attention to our intuition and acting upon it in whatever way it manifests to us, even if we do not fully understand at the time. 4
He also suggests that:
We can also be energetically affected by the changing weather patterns or electrical tension in the atmosphere or because of thunderstorms or earthquakes. Some people are very much affected by the moon and others by changes in the sun. We can experience ‘high days’ when the atmosphere feels light and vibrant. We can learn to become aware of our own changing moods and the origin of them by strengthening our link with higher intelligences. 5
Clarissa Pinkola Estes describes the invisible forces as our wild nature:
When we loose focus we become scattered like a feather bed burst all over the countryside. Focus is composed of sensing, hearing, and following the directions of the wild nature. When we do not tend to our wild nature the creative life dies, we loose energy, we feel tired, we become slow in a negative way, stagnated, everything feel tainted, unclear and toxic. The result of this sludging of the creative energies invades all five phases of creation: inspiration, concentration, organisation, implementation and sustenance. 6
These words are some of what has been written about the invisible forces at play in our lives. Many connect and refer to ancient wisdom that we have lost touch with over the years.
In my experience while we may have lost touch with this ancient wisdom it has not left us. The sense of knowing what is the right course of action for us is innate. I find myself giving people permission to acknowledge and listen more to the rumblings that are going on in and around them, and to take appropriate action.
For example… say a person has been weighing up logically a particular situation for some time. The outcome of their reasoning is perfectly plausible yet something is not quite right. I may suggest we look at what is happening at an energetic level. They may describe ‘having no energy to carry out their perfectly reasoned solution’ or ‘having a sense it is not the right thing to do’ – and at the same time feeling frustrated because they do not have the same strength of logical argument to support this. They may feel the need to isolate themselves from friends or family without knowing why.
Giving permission to acknowledge the innate wisdom that is being communicated via a persons energy level is not the magic cure all. It can complicate matters, by introducing what appear to be irrational possibilities. However, what it always does is ensure that all cards are on the table. Once people can acknowledge all the forces going on, it seems to me that they can easily come to what is right for them. In the examples above, before introducing the energy information, there is a clear lack of vitality or ability to sustain the action required to carry out what they tell themselves is the right thing to do.
This is the difference I find – there is a visible strength and vitality in people regardless of their issues when they honour the energetic information that is at their disposal.
In addition, it can be fun. People enjoy seeing how obvious some things can be when they look at the bigger picture. It is empowering because this way teaches them to draw on their resources – to listen to themselves and what is happening at a deeper level.
I did not set out to bring energy into my work. Years of study of the esoteric has deepened my understanding of what I call ‘the bigger picture’. For a long time I kept it to myself, not thinking it would be of any assistance, sometimes even thinking it would be inappropriate. With some people more than others the energy dimension was screaming for somebody to name it. I did name it in those cases. The results encouraged me to give it a voice whenever it pops up in my work. I ask lots of questions – reflect more of what is not being spoken about. I trust that if it is useful it is worth speaking about, hence this article.
My hope would be to encourage others to be open to the additional possibilities that the energetic perspective offers. I am reminded of the foreword to The Hundredth Monkey; “the phenomenon that when enough of us are aware of something, all of us become aware of it.” 7
Mary Stefanazzi is a psychotherapist and supervisor in private practice.
1. Page, S. and Wosket V. (1994) Supervising the Counsellor. Routledge.
2. Aivanhov, O.M. (1986) Man’s Subtle Bodies and Centres. Editions Prosveta.
3. Collinge, Dr. W. (1998) Subtle Energy. Thorsons .
4. Gill, P. (1991) The Way of a Healer. Mercier Press.
5. Gill, P. (1991) The Way of a Healer. Mercier Press.
6. Estes, C. P. (1993) Women Who Run With The Wolves. – Rider Books.
Mary Stefanazzi is a Psychotherapist (Accredited by IAHIP), and Supervisor in private practice.