Lesson 1 - What We’ve Learned About Dissociation
Our initial training in prayer ministry was with Wholeness Through Christ Ministries (Australia), beginning in 1990. Inner healing was explained without any specific mention of dissociation. We began to hear the phrase, ‘multiple personality disorder’ after James Friesen’s book, Unlocking the mystery of MPD became available in 1991. (San Bernadino, Ca: Here’s Life Publishing.)
Charles Kraft’s Deep wounds, deep healing, published in 1993, (Tonbridge, Kent: Sovereign World) included chapter 11: "Ministry to the inner family". There he described the variety of parts, or sub-personalities, he encountered when he was asked to pray with people. The phrase ‘inner child’ was commonly in use in inner healing and psychological literature published from the early 1980s onwards, but in different ways. Charles Kraft lists these three:
- The immature aspects of a person’s personality (Richard W Dickinson and Carol Gift Page, The child in each of us. Wheaton, Ill: Victor, 1989).
- The ‘recovery movement’ see the inner child as the ‘sensitive, vulnerable part of ourselves’ that should be discovered, healed and then nurtured throughout our lives in order for us to achieve wholeness, emotional health, and our creative potential (as in Lucia Cappachione, Recovery of your inner child. NY: Simon and Schuster, 1991).
- A convenient label for one or more subselves created by persons as a kind of storehouse of reactions to negative experiences, especially those of childhood (as Rita Bennett, Making peace with your inner child. Old Tappan, NJ: Fleming H Revell, 1987 and David Seamands, Putting away childish things. Wheaton, Ill: Victor, 1982).
We add a fourth:
- In pop psychology 'inner child' denotes the childlike aspect of a person's psyche viewed as an independent entity. It refers to subjective childhood experiences and their remaining effects, or alternatively to all of the emotional memory and experiences stored in the brain from earliest memory. The Twelve-step recovery movement use the inner child in recovery from addiction, abuse, trauma, or post-traumatic stress disorder, and under the label 'Adult Children of Alcoholics Syndrome' it emerges as a form of codependency. Carl Jung referred to it as the 'Divine Child', Emmet Fox the 'Wonder Child', Charles Whitfield the 'Child Within', and others the 'True Self' or the 'Wounded Inner Child'. In Transactional Analysis it is simply 'Child'. Some consider that fostering the inner child concept encourages a victim mentality.
Kraft uses the word ‘inner child’ in the third way he gave in his book, recognising that God has built into us the ability of certain parts of us to protect other parts. The abused subself builds walls inside to protect the coordinating or overseeing part. Psychologists came to refer to the condition as dissociation, and in the more extreme forms, Kraft defined dissociation as:
"The human ability to separate off certain experiences from the mainstream of life and to encapsulate them in an alternate consciousness that functions to greater or lesser extent separately from the main consciousness." (Deep wounds, deep healing, pages 221-253)
This quote was included in the 1996 WTCM(A) course with a new chapter, "Forms of Abuse". It was listed as one of the responses to abuse. It was defined as:
Dissociation Identity Disorder is a God-given ability of survival, whereby people build mental and emotional walls around abusive or painful experiences, which enables them to continue living a fairly normal life. Such memories may be completely, or only partially accessible to the person. By inviting Jesus to come into the situation and bless the inner child with His loving presence, healing follows. However, when the abuse has been severe or there has been a history of Satanic Ritual Abuse, the dissociation may result in a number of completely separate personalities, known as Multiple Personality Disorder. It is extremely important that such people are referred to skilled professional counsellors, the lay worker will be out of his/her depth and could further traumatise the sufferer.
We attended the Ellel conference in 1996 and in questions from the floor were made aware of the high number of people seeking healing from Satanic Ritualistic Abuse. The 1997 Ellel Conference, Healing the broken hearted exposed us to further teaching and ministry to deeply traumatised people. They used the term fragmentation and person parts and spoke of the need to integrate the parts. We also listened to Tom and Diane Hawkins’ description of ministry to DID and SRA and were somewhat disconcerted by what they taught. There were features of their practice that alarmed us.
The wisdom of that time said that full fragmentation resulted from very traumatic events and that the soul and spirit of people were split. Partial fragmentation or dissociation occurred when the soul only was affected. It is a denial of emotions associated with the memory. Treating fragmentation demanded intense, frequent and long term commitment from well qualified counsellors working with people under psychiatric supervision.
We realised that much prayer ministry we had engaged in encountered wounded parts who needed to meet Jesus. We saw wonderful change in many lives as Jesus was invited to come into memories, and with repentance, forgiveness and deliverance discovered healing and freedom. In 1996 we started the Beth Tephillah Ministry Centre with a team of trained people, and we took opportunities to read and learn. We considered ourselves a generalist ministry and knew we did not have the time commitment to engage in weekly ministry with those with a diagnosed dissociative identity disorder, so we chose to refer them on. From time to time we provided prayer ministry for people working through ritual abuse with psychiatrists and psychologists and found they received speedier healing that those not receiving any inner healing.
We completed the Elijah House basic school in 1995 and the advanced school in 1997. There were 3 sessions of teaching on DID which were helpful. "People who have been fractured by being dragged through extreme cruelty without mercy as youngsters, usually starting before age 5. These people have been fractured to the point of forming multiple personalities to survive the abuse." (Training for Prayer Ministry Advanced School 1997/98, p. 88) Such dissociation was considered uncommon and best left to trained therapists. Both Ellel and Elijah House teaching spoke of programming and the complicated nature of prayer counselling for DID which confirmed to us that we were not sufficiently equipped to tackle this. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)-IV definition (p. 487) states:
"The presence of two or more distinct identity or personality states that recurrently take control of the person’s behaviour, accompanied by an inability to recall important personal information that is too extensive to be explained by ordinary forgetfulness."
Frequently we found that people would have a measure of healing but there was often something blocking access to the full memory, including the emotions of the event. One lady had great anger because her mother died when she was eleven and she had no memory of her mother preparing her for her death. However, her aunt had told her she had taken her to see her mother in the hospital and her mother hadtold her of her impending death. As Jesus took her through the memory she saw herself travelling in the lift and walking along the corridor to the ward. Then there was a blank until she was going down in the lift again. The conversation with her mother was totally inaccessible to her. We were unable at that time to get in touch with the full memory and its attendant trauma.
Watching Charles Kraft speak to a 4 year old while ministering to a man in 2001 confirmed the way we were going was along the right track and provided another key to dealing with the demonic.
It was in 2004 that we saw an advertisement for an Anazao conference which specifically mentioned dissociation and SRA, so decided to check them out. We couldn’t attend the teaching days but watched a highly effective demonstration ministry. As described by Peter Toth in The forgotten factor in healing, p. 156, in one and a quarter hours:
We contacted a part, dealt with interference, went to a memory, she abreacted through it, Jesus brought his truth in the trauma, we mapped the part system. There were 20 parts in total. Jesus was introduced to each part and then complete part removal took place. Then we accessed another memory without the part system (which no longer existed) and Jesus brought his peace and calm. This particular person was SRA so there was more demonic interference than in non-SRA cases."
It seemed that this approach would speed up ministry to deeply broken people, something for which we had prayed for years. We wanted to know more. In 2005 we booked in for further conferences when they were in Melbourne and learnt more. Their book The forgotten factor in healing (Sydney: Ark House, 2006), was published in 2006 and was launched in Victoria on 8th July as part of the 10th anniversary celebrations of Beth Tephillah Ministry Centre. Peter and Heather then spent a month at Beth Tephillah and we and some of our staff had the privilege of observing them minister to a wide range of clients, in different counselling situations, dealing with ‘ordinary’ and SRA dissociation.
We committed to the four week Cutting Edge School at Anazao in 2006 which included a week each on Dissociation and on Satanic Ritualistic Abuse. During this course we observed ministry to an SRA victim who had unsuccessfully sought healing for many years. The Anazao course was his last resort. He had 1285 parts resulting from this abuse, as shown in the diagram. These were removed during ministry sessions which totalled about a day, and he is now doing well dealing with the issues resulting from the abuse. During the school we also discovered a whole new level of SRA not generally recognised by other ministries. We will speak more of this later.
We repeated the Dissociation week in Geelong in February 2007. Peter and Heather Toth observed us ministering in April and subsequently wrote, "We would consider you both to be accredited with regard to an Anazao approach to dissociation and we would recommend people to see you."
While the Toths were with us in July 2006 we, (Diana and Mal), also received ministry with our staff observing, during which each of us had our parts identified, a memory abreacted through, and the part system completely removed. For neither of us was the memory particularly traumatic, but we have had many prayer ministry sessions since we were first introduced to inner healing in 1990, so many traumas had already been dealt with. In previous ministries our parts would have been resisting access to memories. Now, with the part fully cooperating with Jesus important truths were gained as Jesus came into the memory. The whole process was accomplished in 2 hours for each of us.
Both of us have noticed changes as a result of having our parts removed and resolving some of the underlying issues. Some memories have since been visited without parts and the blockages to intimacy with Jesus that had resulted from these incidents have been removed. One specific change Mal reports is far greater confidence in many areas. Whereas before he would carry out deliverance ministry with reluctance, now he enjoys making demons reveal their lies to their victims and generally easily evicting them. People remark that Di looks younger!
Here is a map of Mal’s dissociative parts:
The purpose of this seminar is to share what we have learnt by observation, reading and practice. The book The forgotten factor in healing provides a detailed explanation of the Anazao approach drawn from their hours of ministry to deeply broken people. We have yet to personally do complete part removal for SRA, but have been working with people who received ministry for SRA and visiting memories with them. We have done complete part removal for a number of non-SRA people, and worked with memories with some with true SRA. By using the Anazao method of speaking to parts, getting them to meet Jesus and then share the complete memory they hold, then removing all the parts, people who have before now spent years trying to get to the bottom of their difficulties, have come into new freedom.
Today we will briefly explain the Anazao understanding of the mechanics of dissociation, which differs from others, and demonstrate the method Anazao have developed of speaking to parts, dealing with any demonic interference and bringing Jesus into the memory until there is peace and calm. We will also begin to map a part system, although it is unlikely that there will be time to do complete part removal and visit a memory without parts. Given our time constraints, we will not be covering SRA as such, but the Anazao method is effective for the whole range of dissociative disorders. Dealing with SRA effectively requires some other knowledge about the kingdom of darkness in addition to knowing how to handle dissociative parts.
If anyone wishes to go further with this method so that they too can become effective in helping such deeply wounded people, then we unhesitatingly recommend the purchase of Peter Toth’s book, The Forgotten factor in Healing, and enrolment in an Anazao Cutting Edge Ministry course. Visit www.anazao.com.au for more details. We can supply copies of the book.
Resource Sheet 1 - Ramblings of Ministry is the testimony of one person who received ministry from Peter and Heather Toth at the Beth Tephillah Ministry Centre. The initial ministry was part of a one hour demonstration of the Anazao approach which was followed by a further hour and a half of ministry later. It was wonderful to sit in a ministry session and watch what Jesus does, and to observe the changes that result in the person once they no longer have dissociative parts.