Why We are Here: The Power of Community

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Kizzie

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Why We are Here: The Power of Community
« on: November 02, 2014, 07:39:56 PM »
Dr. Judith Herman, the well known traumatologist who coined the term Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in 1992, wrote about the healing power of community:

Traumatic events destroy the sustaining bonds between individual and community. Those who have survived learn that their sense of self, of worth, of humanity, depends upon a feeling of connection with others. The solidarity of a group provides the strongest protection against terror and despair, and the strongest antidote to traumatic experience. Trauma isolates; the group re-creates a sense of belonging. Trauma shames and stigmatizes; the group bears witness and affirms. Trauma degrades the victim; the group exalts her. Trauma dehumanizes the victim; the group restores her humanity.

Repeatedly in the testimony of survivors there comes a moment when a sense of connection is restored by another personís unaffected display of generosity. Something in herself that the victim believes to be irretrievably destroyed---faith, decency, courage---is reawakened by an example of common altruism. Mirrored in the actions of others, the survivor recognizes and reclaims a lost part of herself.

Herman, J. (1997). Trauma and recovery: The aftermath of violence from domestic abuse to political terror. New York: Basic Books

Why are we here? We are here to harness the power of community, to bear witness to our own trauma and that of our peers, and to connect with one another in a respectful, caring and supportive manner. 
« Last Edit: October 28, 2016, 05:01:52 PM by Kizzie »