Cranio Sacral Therapist and Student Newsletter 30

December 24 – 2007

Questions and comments for this issue:

+ Terry Collinson on Stillness Trainings
+ Is fibromyalgia similar to chronic fatigue?
+ How do I get a mentor?
+ Question about shingles.

Hello John,

Apparently it’s the season to be jolly – I
didn’t realise I was out of step the rest of the
year.  If you know what I’m supposed to be doing
in the other seasons, can you let me know.

So in the spirit of the season, here’s a little
gift for you.

No, don’t thank me, it’s all part of the
service and as I said ’tis the season.  Why is
everything to do with Christmas in Olde English?
‘Hark, tis the postman.  I see him on yonder

Anyway pop that little beauty,
in your email address books and when I send you
updates from my Wellness Detective Agency they
won’t bounce off your spam filter and you will
actually get them.

Updates from my what I hear you ask.  Well the
notion of being your own Wellness Detective is
gathering momentum and to keep up with it my
website has become a resource for people who are
taking responsibility for their health and

It starts with adopting the perspective that
nothing in your life happens by accident. If
nothing is random then everything is a clue.  As
well as the Wellness Detective Agency email
updates, in the New Year I will be releasing audio
and video segments too.

Speaking of gift giving, if you are looking for
a present for the person who has everything, then
you could always about get them a personal genome
map.  All you need is a swab from the inside of
the mouth and $1000 USD.

Aw, you shouldn’t have.  No really, you
shouldn’t have.

Anyhu, let’s get on with the
mailbag.  The first letter is from Terry Collinson
of stillness trainings.  I really like the way she
talks about the training she teaches with Brendan
Pitwood from New Zealand.


Hi John,

Lovely to hear from you. Hope all is well with you
and your new life in Ireland.

Our training (Stillness Trainings) began early
this year with 12 wonderful students.  They are
loving the teaching and the work and Brendan and I
are heartened with our efforts and with the way it
is all going.

We put in place so many aspects to nurture and
support the students learning and process, as well
as that of the teaching team.  As you know the
teaching is of the ‘biodynamic’ approach, but we
also keep it very pure and true to Paul’s teaching
of Resonance, plus our development or deepening of
being in relationship from Brendan’s training with
Ray Castellino (pre and perinatal psychology).

We are lucky to have four assistants who graduated
in Australia with Resonance Trainings – Sarah,
Tanya, Michelle and Glenn.  We spend two days
before each seminar to grow ourselves as a team
and our own process so that we are ‘healthy’ and
bonded and are able to deeply support each other
and so then the group.

Because of our course/school accreditation with
PACT we have added nutrition to the teaching, and
we decided to add applied pathology throughout the
course, which as added a great dimension to the
work we had not foreseen.

Thank you for your encouragement and support to go
ahead and teach what I/we have to offer.

with love


Hello John

Your website is simply brilliant! I don’t know why
I hadn’t seen it before.

I am a newly qualified craniosacral therapist
(biodynamic model) and the info on the student
newsletter is very helpful. I have a new client
with Fiobromyalgia and wondered what tips you had
for working with this?

I feel this condition is similar in some respects
to chronic fatigue ME with the reduced thresholds.
I have a sense that facilitated segments also have
a role here.

Working with stillness is so wonderful but this
isn’t always possible initially as the person and
their system needs to be met where they are.

I qualified in July and want to develop my skills
and experience by doing an apprenticeship of sorts
by working alongside a very skilled and
experienced CST practitioner. I have been trying
to find a host practitioner to do this in the UK
but my enquiries have drawn a blank as people
appear not to want anyone else within their client
space. I am a CSTA UK member.

Any suggestions please?

Do you do any student mentoring yourself?

I look forward to your reply.

Many thanks for a very useful website.



Thank you for your kind words about my
websites.  I’m glad you found them helpful.

I have found often the root of Fibromyalgia can
be located in the cerebro spinal fluid itself.  It
has a particular quality to it.  A bit like static
electricity or fizz in the cerebro spinal fluid.
When the person has an ‘attack’ this static-fizz
quality can be felt radiating out along the nerve
pathways, particularly the intercostal nerves.

I have found the underlying root cause can be
similar to chronic fatigue in so much as they both
put the persons life on hold.

The similarity stops there as the mechanics feel
different to me.  Fibromyalgia has a much more
aggressive quality.  There is usually a lot of
pain involved and this sets up a very different
dynamic within the person than chronic fatigue.

As I think about the people I have treated with
Fibromyalgia, what they all have in common is that
the root cause has nearly always been very core.
So while it important to work with the physical
and emotional expressions of the disharmony,
without addressing the core issue, the results
will be temporary at best.

I know – core stuff – heavy jelly – who needs
it?  Such is our work.  Best not to resist it and
know that if you couldn’t help they wouldn’t have
come to you.
How’s that for a double negative.

In relation to your mentoring question, I think
most practitioners will be reluctant to allow you
to be in their room when they are working.  This
is because they have heard about all you and let’s
face it, you’re trouble!

Just kidding, couldn’t resist.  They will be
reluctant because of the intimate nature of the
work and the trust that builds up between the
therapist and patient.

One way around this is for you to bring the
experienced practitioner into YOUR session.  Bring
a patient to their rooms and work with them as
they tune into what you are doing.

You can do this in two ways.  You can bring
someone you have been practicing on.  Someone who
is NOT ill.  You can get feedback about specific
techniques from your mentor as you are doing the
technique.  You can use this way to get feedback
about any aspect of your practice that you are
unsure about.   Obviously the person you bring
will need to be very comfortable with hearing
where you need improvement.

Don’t bring a fellow student or therapist.  I
have found that their intention makes it very hard
to assess what is going on.  For example, if you
are getting feedback about your frontal lift, then
person’s intention will be involved immediately in
lifting their frontal bone.  For that reason it is
better to bring someone who knows nothing about

The second way is to use your mentor as a
‘second opinion.’  For this you would be bringing
one of your own patients.  You can get your
mentors help in a couple of different ways.  They
can tune into the person and help you deepen and
enhance your sense of what the root cause of the
problem is.

You can have your mentor tune in as you treat
the person.

You can treat the person and have your mentor
work with you as your assistant.

You can have your mentor be the lead therapist
and you act as their assistant.

In all the different permutations of this
second way the common thing is that you don’t
discuss the person in front of them.

The only thing your mentor should say to the
person is to confirm whichever aspect of your
treatment are going in the right direction and add
the different expanded bits they may want to add.

Anything else won’t be appropriate.  Talking
about technique and how you can improve will
undermine you in the eyes of your patient.

The thing to remember is that they are your
patient.  They have come to you because they
recognise that you can help them.  I don’t mean
this in a territorial way but more on a larger
scale about how patients find who they need.

And yes, I do mentoring.

Speaking of which, I intend to include a list
of mentors in addition to the therapist lists  I
have on my websites.  Being a mentor basically
means making yourself available for a student on a
one to one basis.

You should get paid for it at the very least
what you charge for treating people.  Time wise
that is.  Let me know if you are interested in
being included in the mentor list.


I am Training in craniosacral therapy, a friend
has shingles around the sacrum, in the past she
had shingles on the brain and almost died. Do you
suggest any holds or ideas on treatment.
Thank you M – Australia.


Shingles is one of those conditions that evoke
the hands thrown up in horror kind of response.
Like the poor person has got something strange,
foreign or alien that the rest of us don’t have.

So just in case you didn’t know – if you’ve had
chickenpox as a child you will have latent
varicella zoster virus lying dormant in your
dorsal root and cranial nerve ganglion.

Should it become activated it will travel down
your axon causing a lot of pain along the way and
finally erupt on the surface of your skin in very
painful blisters – and at that point it will be
called shingles.


Once you understand this then you can see that
the question you need to be asking yourself is why
has this person’s immune system become so low as
to allow the reactivation of this virus.

One thing that can do it is stress.  Physical
stress like working too much and not playing and
working some more and still not playing and
generally being a dull boy.

What I have seen more often is emotional
stress.  The kind of impossible emotional dilemma
sort of stress like being sick of taking care of
the kids but having no way out.  Hating the job
but needing the money.  Not wanting to take care
of the aging parent but not wanting to put them in
a home either.

Another useful question to ask yourself is, ‘Of
all the symptoms this person could have got, why
did they get such a painful one?’  I’ve never had
shingles myself but from what I am told and have
felt, it is very painful.

The good news is you are in with a winning
chance from the get go.  As you know cranial work
has this wonderfully soothing effect on the
nervous system.  All that focus on the cerebro
spinal fluid and still points and what not.

Because shingles is closely involved with the
nervous system it can respond very quickly.  The
person should get enough of a relief to think that
this cranio thing is top notch and will keep
coming to see you as you both work through the
deeper, less fun, if I can use that expression,
reasons why they had these particular symptoms in
the first place.

Lastly, a high proportion of people who get
shingles are over 50.  I bring this to your
attention because their immune system may simply
be clapped out from years of abuse.

That’s it for this issue.  I wish you a very merry
Christmas and a fantastic new year.

Cheerio for now.

Till the next time.

Your Mate,

John D.


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