On Saturday January 20, 2024, Pluto will enter the sign of Aquarius, and with the exception of a brief period next fall, will remain there until 2044. It marks the beginning of a new era, which will catapult us into a brave new world. When Pluto enters a new sign, the themes associated with that sign are ripe for transformation and become a powerful focus in collective consciousness. The sign of Aquarius is linked archetypally with the future, technology and with the community. Pluto in Aquarius heralds the birth of an increased appreciation of the power and importance of community. We can also anticipate a transformation of our understanding and approach to the treatment of the nervous system, another Aquarian theme.
On Sunday January 21st at 4 PM EST, I will be giving a virtual presentation entitled “Its Not All in Your Head” to the Massachusetts ME/CFS & FM Association, (myalgic encephalitis, chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia) which supports and advocates for people living with chronic mysterious illness. They are an important community dedicated to the empowerment of its members. The Association hosts an annual series called “Sunday Conversations” which take place on the third Sunday of the month. This year the theme is co-morbidities that occur in people suffering with ME/CSF and FM, such as Ehlers Danlos, Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, mold toxicity, Chronic Lyme, Dysautonomia and POTS. I was invited to give the first lecture of the series given that all of these conditions often are accompanied by anxiety, depression, cognitive issues, insomnia; symptoms that prompt consultation with a psychiatrist.
Here is the description of the “It’s Not All in Your Head” talk:
“When a patient consults a physician and reports symptoms that refer to multiple unrelated organ systems which do not fit with known patterns or conditions, and when the laboratory tests that are conventionally run do not reveal any abnormalities, the conclusion is reached that they should see a psychiatrist. They are told that they are suffering from stress; that they are depressed or anxious. The implication is that their condition is psychosomatic; meaning that their emotions are manifesting as physical symptoms. This is a very invalidating experience that adds insult to injury.
These patients are in fact often quite depressed and anxious because the inflammation that is affecting their entire body is also affecting their brain, and importantly, because living with disabling symptoms for which they cannot get any help creates feelings of desperation.
In my clinical practice, patients with this presentation are frequently suffering from Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS), the most common cause of which is environmental from mold toxins. Many of these patients also suffer from the connective tissue disorder, Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS). This talk will be a discussion of the multi-modal holistic approach that I take in my practice to the treatment of chronic mysterious illness, which so often is accompanied by depression, anxiety, insomnia, inattention, and brain fog and thus commonly result in referral to a psychiatrist.”
If this sounds interesting, you can register here. It is free and if you are unable to attend live, a recording of the presentation and the slides will be available afterwards. In addition to the “Sunday Conversation” series, The Massachusetts ME/CFS & FM Association is an all around excellent resource for anyone with complex chronic medical illness. It is not necessary to live in Massachusetts to take advantage of what they offer.
In keeping with the themes associated with Pluto in Aquarius, our entire health care system is in desperate need of transformation. This is particularly true of the conventional approach to psychiatric illness that focuses almost exclusively on symptom suppression with pharmaceuticals. My new book “Sacred Psychiatry: Bridging the Personal and Transpersonal to Transform Health and Consciousness” published earlier this month, offers a different paradigm that provides a more holistic energetic approach to psychiatric care, in keeping with our new Aquarian era.