Healing Religious Trauma

by William Lee Rand

There are many positive experiences, ideas and beliefs within all religions. And many choose to belong to a religious group in order to benefit from the value they find there.
However, in speaking to people over the years, it is apparent that there are also many who were raised in a religious environment who, as they grew into their teenage and young adult years and began to think for themselves, began to realize that not everything being taught was positive. They found that the religious teachings that contained feelings of shame, guilt, fear and condemnation were traumatizing and were out of alignment with new values they were developing based on their own inner spiritual guidance.

This led them to reject the religious teachings they had been raised with and to seek a different spiritual path that was in greater alignment with the clearer understanding about spiritual things they now had.

And while this new path felt much better, often the trauma from the previous religious experience remained. This made it difficult to use the words Jesus, God or Holy Spirit. And so other words were used to indicate these spiritual resources such as Source, Higher Power, The Universe and so forth.  However, because the religious trauma hadn’t been healed, there continued to be judgement and negative feelings toward religion. We have found that using different words to describe spiritual resources does not release one from the dysfunction caused by religious trauma. It simply places it in the background where it can continue to cause problems.

While it is obvious that all trauma needs to be healed, it is important to understand that unresolved trauma from religion can create blocks to spiritual energy, leaving one’s spiritual path less satisfying than it could be and creating a situation in which one is not as openly connected with the spiritual resources of healing, guidance and empowerment that are available.

This situation can be resolved by healing one’s judgements toward the source of one’s religious trauma; by forgiving those who harmed you and letting go of blame and competitive feelings toward the religion one was raised in, it is possible to more completely release the trauma. When doing this, a tremendous feeling of freedom comes flowing in and one’s ability to benefit from one’s new spiritual path is noticeably improved. However, if these feelings and ideas were placed in one’s psyche when one was young, they can be deeply entrenched and difficult to release.
One of the wonderful benefits of Reiki in general and especially, Holy Fire Reiki is that it helps one heal religious trauma.

To do this, take some time to meditate on your religious trauma. Locate where it seems to reside within yourself and then send Reiki to the trauma. As you do this be open to forgiving and to allowing any judgements you may have to be healed. It will also be important to more completely allow others to practice the religion they choose to practice and to make peace with all religions. As you give permission to others to practice the religion they choose to practice, you more completely give permission to yourself to practice the spiritual path you choose to practice.

As this process unfolds, you’ll become aware of stress releasing within yourself—stress you may not have previously been aware of. New feelings of joy and happiness will come to you and become a regular part of your daily experience. And in addition, your ability to use Reiki to heal yourself and others will grow stronger.