All humans experience fragmentation and we react very effectively by eating while feeling hungry, sleeping when tired, getting together when feeling lonely. Our organism beautifully corrects itself.
But getting fragmented in western urban contexts is pandemic, it has its specifics and happens every day.
There is a growing craving for experiencing wholeness.
Gaming, alcohol, drugs, sex, dance events, consumerism, exotic holidays, cruises all seem to promise feeling (better and) whole, but most of the time these experiences are shallow and temporarily.
Mindfulness, meditation, spiritual experiences and team sports seem to do better jobs in feeling more ‘together’.
In First Nation conceptions of sanity there is an awareness that due to living mind-body-soul are dispersing ‘naturally’. Connectedness with each other and with their environment is central to get out of fragmentation into balance again. Hence there is a collective need for revitalising the sacred trinity of Mind-Body and Soul.
Getting defragmented is done most effectively by affliction- and transition rituals.
These kinds of rituals are rare in European contexts. With Christianization and Secularization we have lost most of these re-uniting revitalising and de-fragmenting traditions.
First Nation tradition offer themselves to help us reconnect with our ‘wholing’ and ‘healing’ pasts (Deloria 1972; interview Some 2010; Michael Harner 2008).