Throughout human history, sweat lodge ceremonies have been used as a way to detoxify the body, purify the soul and connect with a higher power. Many of our clients tell us the sweat lodge experience is one of the most powerful and life-changing components of treatment.
What It Is:
During the sweat lodge ceremony, we build a fire, heat stones in the fire and pour water on the heated stones in a small, dark structure made of pillows and blankets, filling the space with steam. Sitting in this sacred space, clients sing, pray, chant and express their feelings. Four times throughout the ceremony, we open the door and replace the stones to shift the focus to a different aspect of the clients’ recovery. The first stage focuses on self-judgement, the second on forgiveness and resolution of family issues. The third focuses on opening the clients’ perspective and allowing them to see their lives and mental health in a new light. The fourth stage empowers clients to claim the changes they’re making in their recovery and commit to specific actions and behaviors to support those healthy changes.
At The Ranch, sweat lodge ceremonies are performed by therapeutic staff with extensive training in the Lakota Sweat Lodge Tradition.
How It Helps:
The sweat lodge ceremony allows clients to release unhealthy patterns of self-judgment, recognize and overcome destructive responses to fear and anxiety, increase awareness of personal physical and emotional responses to triggers and connect with themselves and their needs on a deeper and more authentic level. Clients often experience breakthroughs during the sweat lodge ceremony that provide clarity and insight into their thoughts and behaviors.
Our clients often tell us the sweat lodge is one of the most transformative parts of treatment. Clients leave the sweat lodge ceremony with greater confidence and clarity and an improved ability to express their feelings.
Other benefits include:
- More authentic communication
- Deeper connection with self, others and spirituality
- Improved self-awareness and assertiveness
- Development of new coping skills
- The ability to identify and release problematic thought and behavior patterns
- Increased ability to forgive self and others