Holotropic States can be accessed in many different ways. One of those is Holotropic breathwork™ a substance free technology developed by Stanislav and Christina Grof following Stan’s years of clinical research into the therapeutic use of LSD. They found that if the right set (mind-set, personality-set and biographical-set of the individual) and right setting (the therapeutic container of the experience) were in place then the Holotropic experience would be exponentially beneficial to the individual due to the inherent safety.
A Holotropic Adventure has 3 key components:
There is quite a bit of work that goes on before any Holotropic experience. Reading this is a sign that something is catching your attention and there is a reason for that and needs to be noted – It could be your call to the hero’s adventure. There is a comprehensive medical questionnaire you will complete which we will assess and discuss with you during your pre-workshop consultation. You will receive a guiding letter to put you in the best place to getting the most from your experience. Setting up your base camp if you like. You will be invited to journal your thoughts and your dreams because as soon as you make the commitment to attend an event the cogs click into place and start to turn. You will be invited to be mindful around what you put into your body – the more you do around your personal housekeeping the clearer the messages will be from the unconscious.
You will be invited to start forming your questions and intentions for the work – Why am I doing this? What do I want to get out of it? If you have the answers to these questions you have a better chance of getting what you need. This is what we call creating the mindset. And then when you have formed your intentions we invite you to let them go and that opens us up to whatever the Inner Healer wants to bring a little bit more.
A week before your adventure, we get together online for final preparation where we all share where we are at. We go through the Holotropic Agreements and ask you to sign up to them – they contribute to keeping us all safe. We explain the inquiry tool we use that acts as our compass as we navigate the internal terrain – the Awareness Positioning System – a term coined by Tav Sparks. We also cover what things you need in your backpack for your own comfort and safety.
So after the preparation we are good to go. Depending on the method you are choosing to enter the Holotropic State there may be a sitter for every participant and a facilitator is in the room at all times. We talk about the different roles of participant, sitter (if needed) and facilitator and how each one supports the experience before we set off so everyone knows what they are doing and what is expected of each other.
The Holotropic Adventure is an internal experience and it all happens on your mat with your eye shade on. All that the participant needs to do is surrender and release and the breath is a great way to support the process.
If required the sitter is the participants first line of safety. They are on hand to provide cushioning, water, tissues, support the breather in getting to the lavatory and to provide physical support if requested. The intention of the sitter is that of witness and to keep the participant safe. Very often the participant can sense this support and it allows them to drop deeper into the process. The role of the sitter can be just as rewarding as the session experience itself. What a gift to give and receive.
The facilitator holds the safety awareness of the group and is there to support, support, support. They are on hand to provide energy focussed bodywork if requested or guidance if a participant experiences themselves as being stuck in the process..
The session duration varies depending on which method of entering the Holotropic State is chosen and may or may not include music and movement.
At Caledonian Holotropic we appreciate that what needs to happen before and what needs to happen after a session is just as important as the session itself. In that spirit we take integration seriously too. Integration is about bringing the gold of the experience back home in a way that you can use it to make beneficial changes in your life. If integration didn’t happen one can get lost in peak experience after peak experience and not much change happens on the ground.
As soon as your session completes you will be invited to create a mandala or collage of your adventure to capture, non-verbally, important messages or insights the Inner healer has brought to the threshold of your consciousness for your attention. If hung in place where you will regularly see them they can provide insights days and weeks after your experience. We encourage you to journal before you leave. The journaling and artwork help support your verbal sharing with the group. We check in with you before you leave to make sure you are back and grounded in this 3D world. We let you know how you can support your own integration and your well-being back home.
An online meeting is scheduled for a week after your session and the group comes back together for further supportive sharing. You can book additional individual 25 or 50 min integration sessions too.
At Caledonian Holotropic safety is our top priority. Our team have had years of self-exploration in Holotropic states as well as going through a rigourous training and certification with various training bodies. We love this work and we love holding a safe space to allow you to go as deep as you need.
We look forward to welcoming and accompanying you on your Holotropic Adventure.