How is Multi-Generational Trauma Affecting Native American Culture today? And is Guided Plant Medicine the Best Solution?
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Native Americans are renowned for their strength, courage, and resilience. However, past traumatic events have disrupted their way of life when the Europeans forcefully settled in their lands.
Native Americans were displaced and not allowed to speak their native languages or showcase their cultures. Smallpox and tuberculosis among other diseases were introduced while natives were maimed and stripped of culture. Divide and conquer techniques systematically deteriorated the sense of unity, connection and cultural ways integral t among the Native Indigenous Peoples in America and perhaps throughout the world, this coherence of operative assault blazed the trail of disharmonious existence.
Many Native Indigenous children were taken away from their family, communities and disconnected from thier Tribe. This form of cultural assimilation kept valuable knowledge from being passed to younger generations. The Boarding schools abused the children emotionally, mentally, physically. The saying “kill the Indian save the child” best sums up the effects of Boarding school: they taught the children to be ashamed of their Native life, family and ways.
So, how do these centuries and decades of multi-generational trauma affect the culture of Native Americans today? The answer is not far-fetched. Read on as we discuss what historical trauma is all about.
What is Multi-generational trauma?
Multi-generational trauma is the accumulation of psychological and emotional wounds throughout one’s lifetime and from one generation to another which leads to loss of lives, land, and important elements of culture.
How are these traumas passed down?
We all know that several Native communities are plagued with varying degrees of difficulties. There is a widespread and escalating level of poverty, suicide, unemployment, violence, and poor health, coupled with a high degree of hopelessness. Partly, these difficulties represent an underlying sign of unresolved historical trauma.
Although these traumas occurred a long time ago, they outlive each generation and are experienced by successive generations.
Successive Native American generations live under the shadow of history and lead to high-stress levels on the body and mind. There is a process to follow in a bit to move on from generational grief and trauma.
Step one is to confront the generational trauma. Step two is to understand the trauma. Step three is to release the pain of generational trauma while the last step is to transcend the trauma.
Native Americans need to learn how to confront their hurts, release the pains of their hurts, and leave a brighter future for their children.
How does ancient plant knowledge help in healing intergenerational trauma?
Guided plant medicine is seen as one of the ideal treatments for those that have witnessed one traumatic event or another. Native Americans suffering from multi- generational trauma will also benefit from the use of cannabis and psychoactive plants.
About 90% of adults living in the United States of America have experienced a traumatic event with high severity to qualify as PTSD. PTSD means post-traumatic stress disorder and only a few end up having full-fledged PTSD.
A significant number of those with PTSD don’t respond to frontline treatments like psychotherapy and medication. This has greatly increased the potential of using Plant Medicine for PTSD treatment.
Lots of findings have made scientists believe in the efficacy of cannabis for those struggling with the aftermath of generational trauma. Studies were successfully conducted in animals which prove that giving doses of the cannabinoid to animals after they have been exposed to trauma can relieve symptoms of trauma.
In conclusion, one of the vital way’s plant medicine may assist with the trauma-related case is by improving sleep which in turn reduces frequent nightmares which is a major symptom of distress. Cannabis also can help reduce anxiety and enhance mood.
However, further research should be carried out to unearth the great potential inherent in cannabis as a treatment for trauma.
Kilpatrick, D. G., Resnick, H. S., Milanak, M. E., Miller, M. W., Keyes, K. M., & Friedman, M. J. (2013). National estimates of exposure to traumatic events and PTSD prevalence using DSM-IV and DSM-5 criteria. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 26(5), 537–547.
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