Dreamshadow® Transpersonal Breathwork Educational Program: Practical and Theoretical Aspects of Exceptional Experience

Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork is an applied, practice-linked philosophy that incorporates the method of Breathwork within a metaphysical framework helpful for understanding and integrating psychedelic and exceptional experience.

Our approach is based on the works of Alfred North Whitehead and the holotropic theory of Stanislav Grof, pioneering psychedelic researcher, investigator of exceptional human experiences and cofounder of transpersonal psychology. This approach can facilitate personal self-exploration, open up possibilities for working with problematic events in one’s life history, and recover the ecological and spiritual connections to the cosmos that modern culture has disrupted.

Our work is grounded in the continuity of a community of practitioners. The training program is intended to help facilitators develop personal understanding of the process, psychological and group process skills, appreciation for the cultural and scientific significance of the work, philosophical openness, and the confidence to facilitate growth experiences with care, appropriate motivation and ethical orientation. These competencies are developed by sharing experience, trust, and multiple levels of understanding with trainers and other group participants. Breathwork experience is endlessly varied, always unique, and surprisingly evolving; with experience, facilitators develop understanding of the powerful and non-directive nature of transpersonal breathwork and profound respect for the innate capacities of breathers.

Breathwork Group, Tavia Ito

Our current training program consists of three basic steps:

  1. Training Workshops:
    Each year, we offer the complete set of our four required training workshops, and people can begin the process at any time — there is no required order in which they need to be taken, but they do all need to be completed in order to move forward with the facilitator certification process. Our four, five-day training workshops are offered on a rolling basis:

    1. Overview of Breathwork and Holotropic Theory: Exploration of each of the aspects of Breathwork, including how they combine to create a holistic experience: group process, intensified breathing, evocative music, focused bodywork, expressive art. The history of depth psychology and its culmination in Transpersonal Psychology are provided as a crucial backdrop.
    2. History and Theory of Group Process: Integrating best practices of group process into the breathwork experience.
    3. Bodywork: The techniques of bodywork demonstrated, explained and practiced in reference to mind/body issues and Grof’s theory of perinatal matrices.
    4. Exceptional Experience: Its nature in the context of breathwork practice and with reference to Holotropic theory and process philosophy.
  2. Final Project: Designing and undertaking a final project that demonstrates understanding of the material and readiness to facilitate, both practical and theoretical. Possible examples include presenting a paper, giving a talk, offering a small workshop with our assistance, a creative project, community work.
  3. Certification Interview with Training Committee: This final step in the certification process is an opportunity for trainees to receive guidance in the next steps of offering their own workshops.

Additional Resources: Trainees and recently certified facilitators are also encouraged to assist with our weekend Breathwork workshops, where, in addition to the Breathwork sessions, we teach the practical and theoretical aspects of Dreamshadow Transpersonal Breathwork.

We recommend reading materials, offer online study courses based on the teachings of Grof and Whitehead and others, and help trainees offer their own workshops and related events when they are ready.

Please note: Our training requirements are subject to change as our program develops. The training workshops are open to anyone who wishes to attend for their own personal development. After completing our four required training units, we will ask those who are seeking certification as a DTB facilitator to complete an application before continuing on to Steps 2 and 3.