Friday, January 24, 2014

How Do You Harm a Fetus?

 You harm anyone, no matter the age, by depriving them of their biologic needs. So you abuse a fetus by not recognizing her needs. And what are they? We can tell because we have seen those needs in action in therapy sessions, and the screaming and agony when they go unfulfilled. We do not have to theorize about them. If we do not know them then there will be deprivation and harm. We see the terrible impact when the baby is left alone after birth, and is not held, caressed or touched. We see the pain and the result. Further, in later reliving, we see its lifelong effects: the inability to be alone, the nagging emptiness of not being with someone, the need to constantly connect either personally or on the phone. All to keep that basic aloneness away.

 We can see how the pains pile up and accumulate reaching inordinate heights, and the symptoms that issue from that; aching stomach, migraines and high blood pressure. Further, we see in the reliving that once that terrible aloneness and isolation has been felt, so much changes both psychologically and biologically. And we also know that we don't get to those imprints until months into the therapy.  The earlier the pain the more time it takes to reach, as it should be since the more remote the event the more painful it will be. And from what I have seen, the imprints from just after conception cannot be seen or often even imagine but they set down their seeds in the earliest formation of cells. And those are the most difficult to find and the most difficult to conceptualize and treat, but they may be behind schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s and some cancers. These may be the deepest imbeds, the most remote and ineffable memories engraved in the primitive developing cells. We look at them after decades of agitation and try to decipher their causes and how to deal with them.  But we are long after the fact, and that is the problem. The fetus is deprived, first of all, through irresponsible diet by the mother, and then most importantly, the mother is chronically anxious and revs up the baby unrelentingly. It is this chronic input, un-contained and un-circumscribed that does its damage. It never lets up, and the baby's resources can no longer cope. This is the harbinger of later disease. It is not one fixed event in time that does the damage; it is the unrelenting adversity that does it.

 But when we get the perfect trifecta: fetal damage, birth damage and infancy harm, there is little doubt that we have a child whose life will be cut short. Depriving parents tend to be that way all along the child's development. One way we can predict how long that child's life will be is by the length of her telomeres, the longer the better for longevity. The mother's stress level shortens her telomeres and, I assume, that of the fetus as well. Your projected lifespan is already set inside the womb. That is where the great early harm takes place; a fetus who has not way to escape the harm but sets there and takes it, day after day. Children who grow up in orphanages have very short telomeres. And that tendency goes on into adult life. It does not have to be in institution; a divorcing mother can suffer continuously and over stimulate the baby. And we know that the higher the stress hormone level, cortisol, the shorter the telomeres. Worse, those who had shorter telomeres in childhood could often count on diseases such as cancer in adulthood. Three times more likely to develop pancreatic cancer. And this, I believe, begins during womb life and sets the stage of arcane and recondite illness later on. So telomere length is a good index of disease later on. Those with chronic shorter telomeres were far more likely to end up Alzheimer’s. The point is that those mothers who were heavily stressed during pregnancy had shorter telomeres, which finally affected the offspring.

Thus the remote life endangering events are the very imprints that become life endangering in adult life. It is a memory of near death that again can put you near-death later on, so long as that memory is not relived and extirpate from the system. Stress, or deprivation of need, which is the same thing, imprints a molecular mark that trails us for life. That is the culprit we must deal with.
And that is the culprit that is so evasive because it is of such early provenance. Few of us can imagine that time-span. Few of us can investigate and see the fetal imprint, yet it is there before our eyes if we know how to look at it.

So we ask patients about their childhood, and usually go not further. We leave out real basic causes and content ourselves with what may be obvious. It is the non-obvious that is the killer.


  1. One of the most interesting posts!

    Thanks Art.


  2. Dear Art,
    Since I often complain or quibble with something I might as well also mention that I miss having a "Thumb-up button" and a "Thumb-down button" to click on here in you blog.
    Could you please ask someone to add this feature! :-)

    P.S. I think you are doing a great job - my quibbles are minor in comparison.

  3. The mothers of todays world, and even 20 years before "this era" have been informed that it is important for the fetus's well-being to have the mother pay attention to their health. Many years ago,
    like 50 years ago, the mothers weren't informed of the potential harm they could be doing to their child. It is unfortunate that this was not known earlier. I know my mom regrets not taking better care of herself when I was in the womb, but she didn't know. She didn't know to relax her mind ; just take it easy. Sure she paid attention to a certain extent that the fact that she was pregnant, but at that time, no one knew really that what goes on with the mother during pregnancy affects her unborn child. It's like back when , when everyone thought a tan for white people were a sign of being healthy. It is good that Dr. Janov keeps us informed; it is an interesting subject.

  4. What you writes ART is of science in which the question of its contents prevents its own answer... depending on the listener that needs to hear has a meaning of defending against it!

    A cry of despair has hard to justify its content for professionals in psychiatric and psychological faculty!

    Ours University has a scheme to cement content... with consequences that developing science has to struggle to make itself heard! We are left at where Freud started... I mean if new science goes beyond for what already is cemented... it will no longer belong for what a cemented schooling contains!

    If what a professional knows... he knows to sustaining his own life... then it is not difficult to see the consequences for what he knows if he should be without it?

    This is the reason for the solicitation of a legal process... it comes to finding the right sentences to reveal content!


    1. Frank,

      the legal systems around the world would not recognise the language of Primal Theory.

      They might recognise the language of Evolutionary Psychology but this Science is largely 'un-proven'. Therefore the courts would be faced with 'conjecture'.

      I wish you could understand that from my own experience in court there is NO ROOM FOR FEELINGS.

      Who would who be sueing who for what ?

      My son was born methadone addicted, can he sue the hospital ? If she was still alive could he sue his own mother ?

      Where would all this go ? Frank, I like your posts but really to keep on and on and on and on and on about making a fight in court in such incredibly generic ways is gradually eroding my faith and appreciation of your posts. Please stop it.

      Have you ever been in court ? Have you ever met any one who has lost a case ?

      To lose a case in court when you are in the right is more devastating than the original crime. Appeal after appeal after appeal.

      It is unreal and the only people who win are the lawyers.

      Paul G.

    2. Paul... who is who as don't know... word makes the difference?!

      "Who would who be sueing who for what": Who is who as don't know!? Who was who... who did not care at the Nasi concentration camps?

      Sorry... let me put it this way... should the staff at the concentration camps in Germany have protisterat? A question fully in its right as we know what happened!

      Paul you are at... what the question would have been if someone at the concentration would protisterat... the difference... today... we will not be gassed to death... and maybe we can come to grips with the question!

      We have to ask ourselves where and how do YOU think you'll get support for primal therapy... and who are you to argue against something that you know nothing about?

      If you limit yourself to what the answers may be... as an argument against a legal process ... then the gas taps continue to remain open at our psychiatric hospitals!

      Who can have the right to exercise care without any knowledge in the area... all practicing cognitive methods should be facing the railing at the court Paul!

      If you find your time to be silent on the issue... so I can't understand your involvement in the attempt to silence me!

      "It is unreal and the only people who win are the lawyers". The only people who now win is the ones who finds the joy in letting the gas tabs be open!

      Now I have told you "Where would all this go"

      Sorry Paul... your Frank.

    3. Frank,

      I'm not trying to silence you, I'm disillusioned with the legal process because from my personal experience that is an act out.

      I have come up with concrete suggestions on how to proceed with the law from a trading point of view.

      The Romans promoted this as an alternative to war but better still, now, in this age we have company law with which to interpret trading rather than a strong military arm to enforce it.

      We can't expect any individuals to meet our needs without remuneration. Therin lies the rub. Who will pay for your therapy and who will manage your family affairs whilst you do it ?

      Without some kind of trading relations only those with money will get to Santa Monica. Or those committed to the training program and they will still need some kind of money / cash / company law / trading clout.

      I don't care to argue with you any more on this point. But I will argue with you about arguing.

      Frank, why do you like to argue so much ?

      Paul G.

  5. Now, supposedly, women have more freedom because of the woman's movement ; but I honestly can't say that the woman's movement has helped them. It has made things worse for them in a way. Possibly the only thing good for them in this movement is that for some woman, they feel "freer" to think and feel what they want; and not so pressurized by their husbands. Years ago, some women, in order to succeed for and with the family, felt great pressure from their husbands;
    which in turn could affect the fetus of the pregnant wife.

    1. Hi coastbeach7,

      I am guilty of engaging my childrens mothers in stressful activities when they were pregnant sometimes. I just didn't know. I wasn't in touch with my own feelings.

      It is only because my second partner got into reading up about what's good and not good that I gradually remembered what I read in the Primal Scream some 15 years earlier. But it was like looking through a glass darkly.

      Now I am acutely aware of the consequences and I can tell every nuance in my daughter. She gets 'funny episodes' like sleep walking and night terrors etc. I explain Primal theory to her and she seems to be genuinely interested, interested is not the word. . . she is concerned for herself and for others, she is eager to learn stuff like this.

      I worry about my son, he has gone down the drug route and they just numb his interest in any thing. They also seem to short circuit his comprehension to such a degree as to dip into denial. . .

      That is the problem with class A drugs, prescribed or unprescribed.

      What you said about "feeling freer". . . I think some of us men have lived with the tyranny of repression for so long we need to be faced with women on the "freedom -path". . . perhaps to challenge our assumptions and to withdraw that 'unconditional support' we never got from Mum either. . . But my question to those women who have broken free form those sick patriarchal shackles is "have you broken free for the shackles of sick matriarchy and of the universal pan-gender repression. Breaking free from crazy men is not the same as breaking free from early pain and trauma. . .

      Paul G.

    2. Hi Paul

      I have often thought that sleep walking is the real person going for a walk. The small child never allowed to be himself controlling the body. I have had night terrors which have got to be something to do with gestational and birth trauma. I cannot sleep in the total dark even now and even though I am very much getting in touch with the small just unborn baby trapped in a waterless womb for 4 days. I was never allowed to be myself when young. I had to be one thing for my Mother and another for my Father but never me. I know Art explained what manic depression was in his long paper recently and it all seemed so right. However on top of that mania and depression are perhaps the influences of two parents (Bi) building up bigger and bigger pressures. I had to be my Parents entertainer for most of my life. I suspect I was mildly manic for years. That continual pushing myself as you describe. Always on the go like a Duracell rabbit. Running away from my feelings because my feelings were unimportant as was I. Nothing was ever steady in my life so I could never be steady. Foundations were not firm.

      In the end as you say we have to break free from sick patriarchy and matriarchy. Neither sex is better or worse than the other when it comes to parenting.

  6. The "meaning" of life... from when we are born until we die!

    Love in the meaning of mental satisfaction is not enough to tell about its contents!
    Meaning of love moving in the same sphere as thoughts for accomplishment! We must get "permission" through primal therapy to recognize symptoms before we can experience it... symptoms because of pain!

    It is only when the scientific content... consciousness connected to our knowledge as life takes a different route ... a feeling... an experience about its we can experience what our needs is all about!

    The now love is extremely vague without its processing content... feelings reporting its context!

    When we get old... when we do not have more to look forward to... when we lost faith in the future... when not even the illusion of god can help us... then is all whatever mental and physical health before"could" accomplish impossible! No one comes close to us then... we are lost in ourselves for whatever it is... if not the "good luck" of primal therapy has reached us so we can breathe our last days!


  7. Hi Art
    my mother mentioned... on several ocasions(when she was angry of me ) that she had to endure
    resp.that "I" (?) /I do n o t think that I existed at that moment ../ had inflicted Pain on her while
    the birth process.

    My surmise that "I" suffered too! under HER agony is not too far fetched ..?
    Yours emanuel

    P.S. Please forgive something offtopic.
    This very morning I had an interesting finding concerning the effects of psychic/mental in
    infuence on my cardio-vasculat system ,
    On several occasions My blod pressure became BETTER when I was upset about my
    behaviour /cowardice and the like in my Past -sometimes I get forious about my "antecedent Me"

    But today I more or less sat quietly before the TV and listened to the voice talking about The
    HORRORS that Jewish Women/children had to endure before they were sent Gas Chambers
    in the minutest details being described!

    And taking my examination of my blod pressure showed a rise and a pulse rate o108 and
    arythmia !
    So imy system distinguishes between my angiuish and other beings (as usually in my life
    I felt more the Pain of other beings than my my own (i do not boasting of this)

    1. Hi emanuel,

      I get this too.

      I was addicted to watching television documentaries about WW2 and I noticed the conflict on telly would help me justify my feeling anxiety about dying.

      It's physiologic.

      There are many new television documentary commentators about that great catastrophe (WW2). . . children of survivors from that generation. I feel the visual impact if I watch them. As time passes I have found this addictive behavior less and less attractive. My parents went through WW2 in the south of England as children.

      They are deeply traumatised by it all but almost totally in denial about it now. Hardly surprising given the circumstances.

      The way the global economy developed after WW2 was a 'free for all' following a catastrophe of global proportions.

      Since then we have all borne the epigentic consequences. The effects are also social as well as individual. The hell of inheritance follows how we relate with each other in this respect. That is epinegetic consequences not moral or religious or scientific journalism .

      Therefore relations must follow a mediation route.

      That is why Primal Therapy must be enshrined without personal profit/gain.

      The test of spreading Primal would be the test of the existing law concerning 'not for profit' in each national jurisdiction.

      There are few international laws about medical standards but the sciences Art has drawn together offer a way to enshrine medical standards into local (national) Trading Standards.
      Currently there are few channels for that too. UK laws allow only proven science data. There was a program on BBC radio 4 about this That is the problem with Primal as a way of life. Should it be clandestine or should it aim toward social acceptance ?

      The profit motive needs to be eliminated from mainstream care professions.

      There are too many corporate layers involved.

      Paul G.

    2. Hi Paul,
      what do you mean by "not for profit"?
      to me it sounds like a behavior therapy.
      from for profit to not for profit behavior.

      what is the real use in primal context?
      you have much more experience and knowledge about it then i do.

    3. Hi Vuko,

      Strangely, or not so strangely, many centuries ago in England and other Northern European States, the powers that be decided to set up "charities". These to help the disadvantaged.

      The "not for profit" companies evolved out of this philanthropic movement to share power and MEMBERSHIP. In particular the "not for profit company" is the trading wing of the charity.

      Thus in company law there are provisions for people to unite in an enterprise that satisfies their needs beyond merely the profit motive. To do this also collectively through membership.

      I have not checked out whether the Primal Center in Santa Monica is remotely like the company I set up in England but that's not the point.

      The point is to provide for 'worthy causes' which have long been recognised as marginalised. IE: without provision to protect the development of these worthy causes from the worst excesses of the PROFIT MOTIVE.

      People who have never ventured into the world of business or self employment etc etc who have relied on 'employment' with an 'employer' may never need or comprehend the need for this type of company law.

      For them it's all about getting paid for a task full stop.

      Thus employment and profit can easily be hijacked in a way that completely dis-regards the needs of local communities (even national & international communities) to develop without the profit motive.

      Capitalists will tell you that this is impossible because it is in the Human Nature to "make a profit" and that be the only way individuals can co-opperate. That the profit motive is essential to Human Endeavour. Without it we would some-how all die out or degenerate.

      Right wing imperialists deliberately target the dis-advantaged because their conceit proves to them the dis-advantaged can only be dependent on the advantaged.

      "Not For Profit" is not socialist, nor is it Communist, nor is it Co-opperative. . .

      It is (from where I come from) Membership and collaborative.

      I hope that answers your question. . .

      Paul G.

    4. Hi Vuko,

      I completely forgot to mention that a 'not for profit' company charges a profit margin but re-invests that profit back into the aims and objects of the company.

      There are no share holders in a not for profit company. So no profits are shared out as a 'dividend'. Usually 'not for profit' organisations are membership organisations and are there to serve the members needs.

      This is not the same as a co-opperative. In a Primal context this protects clients (potential members) from traders who's motive is personal gain.

      Paul G.

      Paul G.

    5. Paul,

      How shall we precent primal therapy?

      I think we need to start with what science along with the evolutionary process as the basis for what could be stimulating for pimal therapy. But first we have to come so far that people are starting to listen and that is a problem in itself... as primal therapy does not promise well-being as the first argument... it against what cognitive processes promise. Primal therapy must be presented poignant... through scientific flourishing content!

      I do not think a legal process needs to be completely reprehensible in the case for it .. only we can "hold our tongue right in the mouth" for what listeners with no experience of primal therapy needs to hear... for it to gain a foothold.

      I have one thing to say about this and that is... we can not present primal therapy by showing how adults crawling around on the floor... it is going too far in the process for what uninitiated can perceive. We must begin with how evolution built up the brain... how it communicates and... not least... what part of the brain are we using in our everyday speech. What is feelings... and why thoughts... why are they supposed to comunicate with each other... why they do not... how and why they must interfaced with each other.

      For those who are already established in that we are crawling around on the floor and therefore dissociated... we need to "turn the ship" and presenting content for it!

      A Lesson before we crawl around on the floor... to make sure perception is in a possible position to understand... understand why we sometimes crawling around on the floor. Why it is so important is due to understand something before it is possible... needs time for acceptance.

      When we crawling around on the floor... we are in time and space... without moral value as account for what rating taking into account when we crawling around on the floor... a rating to take into account depending on the brain and how it speaks to us when we look at someone crawling around on the floor! It can be crucial to how someone with no experience of primal therapy can begin to perceive the contents of it!

      Your Frank.

    6. Hi vuko,

      "Not For Profit" is a slang name form a company that re-invests it's profits back intot the aims and objects of the company. So, there are no share holders and no dividends payed out. Often the company is set up as a 'membership' organisation and the members are the 'beneficiaries'. Directors are voted in from the members.

      This suits the structure of organisations concerned with helping othewrs because it has no 'profit motive'. But this does not mean no profit is charged for the products or services. The profit margin is put back into / invested in the aims and objects.

      Paul G.

    7. Frank: Please get off this lawsuit thing. It is always the same. art

    8. Hi,

      Frank, I do get the gist of what you are saying and your last post seems to be saying that there is a possibility to 'disseminate' real truth about the Human Condition by using a thoroughly well reasoned argument. I totally agree. Also I know for sure that there are special courts where exceptional discoveries valuable to National and even International "Well Being" have to go to be accepted as new paradigms.

      Most modern governments ans societies have evolved these "courts" but you personally as well as any one else must become a complete expert in this field of "Law" as well as have the financial and social means to enter government to launch your "Appeal".

      I just choose the path of lesser resistance.

      Please come for a stroll on that one with me and we may get to know each other better. . .

      Paul G.

    9. Thank you Paul.
      right now i am using the search box for this blog and some internet sources to learn more about it... to make a opinion.
      i see you wrote about it here more than once. i will read.

  8. We are neurotic!

    We have a brain that is dominated by life-threatening experience... the genetic complications are secondary! If not life threatening experience had been a burden... the genetic complications would have processed in a physiological process to heal them self!

    As small we are processing behaviors against what we experience... and it makes neocortex possible... we learn and do so for the rest of our life due to life-threatening experiences... it as defense against what our brain could not possibly integrate... integrate because of limbic emotional needs ... emotional needs in a developing process!

    We process in a borderless behavior as defense against what was... an on going process further in our life threatening kondition! The question is how to find out that it was and is life-threatening... if not a therapeutic process allows for an emotional integration?

    When I was sitting at the dining table and my dad threatened to beat me if I did not put back the bread I took ​​from the keg... how should I get a similar story being credible to be life-threatening... a consequence of an experience that later turns into symptomatic responses of anxiety and depression... how I'll get it believable as life-threatening when the therapist himself is so blocked that he assigns similar events as part of an upbringing?

    When my dad threatened to beat me... a process of blocking effect against my emotionall presence was needed... a life-threatening experience later explaining my anxiety and depression!


  9. Sort of off topic but kind of related I bought New Scientist last week and read two fascinating articles.
    One was about how gut bacteria can effect how the mind works and the other was about how many epileptics experience euphoric episodes prior to a fit.

    I wondered whether due to reading about Jan Johnsson's experiences of seeing his Epilepsy as part of his birth experience was the sense of completeness and wholeness that these people felt actually early memories of feeling whole and together in the womb prior to a traumatic birth?

  10. An email comment: "My own approach to feelings cannot reach effectively into deeper levels all I had was mock therapy, very hit and miss, and it's not possible to go to the depths you talk about all on your own. I am thoroughly convinced of this."

    1. Hi,

      This may seem off topic but the posts on this blog are coming so thick and fast it's hard not to get insights collide in a kaleidoscopic way. Actually, as the patterns of my psyche rotate, 'insights' hard to express in words appear long after touching these feelings. The words? : I'm going to have a go:

      I think it is possible to Primal alone with some good results but only on the 3rd line and maybe some 2nd line. Then only if there are some significant relations and activities involving others in real outside life, IE: some kind of support 'out there'. . .

      These feelings can't integrate without 'transmission across the interpersonal boundary'.

      I made that up but I know what I mean and it comes from feelings felt in the greater context of my life as a family man struggling with a bi-polar, clinically depressed son and also deeply involved in my tiny carpentry business. . . My 10yr old daughter plays a part too. It's not quite enough support but I am able to re-orient and make small changes nevertheless.

      I spent 5 weeks before Christmas repairing my Landrover and my oh my what an act out that was. At one point I put in a 17 hour non stop shift to get the new doors back onto the body work and even recruited my dear older brother to help. That was a milestone. But the thing is, I realised how much of my frantic efforts were being driven by my 1st line imprints. Also, as a sympath, my act out just had to keep on going 'regardless'. Must 'carry on regardless'. . .

      I have never before done 'restoration/renovation' but I can advise others now to ask: "Is It Worth It"?

      I need to restore my self, not some symbol of my self (or my mother). And by the way, Carl Jungs theory that cars and boats are mens symbols of their 'anima' I believe to be true, true for me at least.

      Nevertheless, the blessed 'thing' is now parked outside and currently my only means of transport (my runnabout Nissan broke down too). So, some purpose it is serving and today it will take me to site to survey / price up another job and that keeps me feeling like I am worth something and can continue surviving.

      Consciousness is a peculiar thing, I mean I recognise all that effort was a 'mistake'. . . Mistake is not the right word. . . It was a 'gamble'. . . Everything I said above about my act out I suspected before I started that 'restoration' but then I just had to go and prove it to myself too. So, I'm on a slightly different timeline from the one I could have been on and that little bit of consciousness I took into the venture with me has not only remained intact but also blossomed slightly.

      It's hard to separate 'inner' from 'outer' isn't it ?

      Paul G.

    2. Paul, thanks for shearing your experiences.
      I think it is very good that you have jobs...
      if it is supported by a good night sleep
      than you could have a basis for everything else.
      whatever comes... whatever you want.


Review of "Beyond Belief"

This thought-provoking and important book shows how people are drawn toward dangerous beliefs.
“Belief can manifest itself in world-changing ways—and did, in some of history’s ugliest moments, from the rise of Adolf Hitler to the Jonestown mass suicide in 1979. Arthur Janov, a renowned psychologist who penned The Primal Scream, fearlessly tackles the subject of why and how strong believers willingly embrace even the most deranged leaders.
Beyond Belief begins with a lucid explanation of belief systems that, writes Janov, “are maps, something to help us navigate through life more effectively.” While belief systems are not presented as inherently bad, the author concentrates not just on why people adopt belief systems, but why “alienated individuals” in particular seek out “belief systems on the fringes.” The result is a book that is both illuminating and sobering. It explores, for example, how a strongly-held belief can lead radical Islamist jihadists to murder others in suicide acts. Janov writes, “I believe if people had more love in this life, they would not be so anxious to end it in favor of some imaginary existence.”
One of the most compelling aspects of Beyond Belief is the author’s liberal use of case studies, most of which are related in the first person by individuals whose lives were dramatically affected by their involvement in cults. These stories offer an exceptional perspective on the manner in which belief systems can take hold and shape one’s experiences. Joan’s tale, for instance, both engaging and disturbing, describes what it was like to join the Hare Krishnas. Even though she left the sect, observing that participants “are stunted in spiritual awareness,” Joan considers returning someday because “there’s a certain protection there.”
Janov’s great insight into cultish leaders is particularly interesting; he believes such people have had childhoods in which they were “rejected and unloved,” because “only unloved people want to become the wise man or woman (although it is usually male) imparting words of wisdom to others.” This is just one reason why Beyond Belief is such a thought-provoking, important book.”
Barry Silverstein, Freelance Writer

Quotes for "Life Before Birth"

“Life Before Birth is a thrilling journey of discovery, a real joy to read. Janov writes like no one else on the human mind—engaging, brilliant, passionate, and honest.
He is the best writer today on what makes us human—he shows us how the mind works, how it goes wrong, and how to put it right . . . He presents a brand-new approach to dealing with depression, emotional pain, anxiety, and addiction.”
Paul Thompson, PhD, Professor of Neurology, UCLA School of Medicine

Art Janov, one of the pioneers of fetal and early infant experiences and future mental health issues, offers a robust vision of how the earliest traumas of life can percolate through the brains, minds and lives of individuals. He focuses on both the shifting tides of brain emotional systems and the life-long consequences that can result, as well as the novel interventions, and clinical understanding, that need to be implemented in order to bring about the brain-mind changes that can restore affective equanimity. The transitions from feelings of persistent affective turmoil to psychological wholeness, requires both an understanding of the brain changes and a therapist that can work with the affective mind at primary-process levels. Life Before Birth, is a manifesto that provides a robust argument for increasing attention to the neuro-mental lives of fetuses and infants, and the widespread ramifications on mental health if we do not. Without an accurate developmental history of troubled minds, coordinated with a recognition of the primal emotional powers of the lowest ancestral regions of the human brain, therapists will be lost in their attempt to restore psychological balance.
Jaak Panksepp, Ph.D.
Bailey Endowed Chair of Animal Well Being Science
Washington State University

Dr. Janov’s essential insight—that our earliest experiences strongly influence later well being—is no longer in doubt. Thanks to advances in neuroscience, immunology, and epigenetics, we can now see some of the mechanisms of action at the heart of these developmental processes. His long-held belief that the brain, human development, and psychological well being need to studied in the context of evolution—from the brainstem up—now lies at the heart of the integration of neuroscience and psychotherapy.
Grounded in these two principles, Dr. Janov continues to explore the lifelong impact of prenatal, birth, and early experiences on our brains and minds. Simultaneously “old school” and revolutionary, he synthesizes traditional psychodynamic theories with cutting-edge science while consistently highlighting the limitations of a strict, “top-down” talking cure. Whether or not you agree with his philosophical assumptions, therapeutic practices, or theoretical conclusions, I promise you an interesting and thought-provoking journey.
Lou Cozolino, PsyD, Professor of Psychology, Pepperdine University

In Life Before Birth Dr. Arthur Janov illuminates the sources of much that happens during life after birth. Lucidly, the pioneer of primal therapy provides the scientific rationale for treatments that take us through our original, non-verbal memories—to essential depths of experience that the superficial cognitive-behavioral modalities currently in fashion cannot possibly touch, let alone transform.
Gabor Maté MD, author of In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction

An expansive analysis! This book attempts to explain the impact of critical developmental windows in the past, implores us to improve the lives of pregnant women in the present, and has implications for understanding our children, ourselves, and our collective future. I’m not sure whether primal therapy works or not, but it certainly deserves systematic testing in well-designed, assessor-blinded, randomized controlled clinical trials.
K.J.S. Anand, MBBS, D. Phil, FAACP, FCCM, FRCPCH, Professor of Pediatrics, Anesthesiology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, Senior Scholar, Center for Excellence in Faith and Health, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare System

A baby's brain grows more while in the womb than at any time in a child's life. Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script That Rules Our Lives is a valuable guide to creating healthier babies and offers insight into healing our early primal wounds. Dr. Janov integrates the most recent scientific research about prenatal development with the psychobiological reality that these early experiences do cast a long shadow over our entire lifespan. With a wealth of experience and a history of successful psychotherapeutic treatment, Dr. Janov is well positioned to speak with clarity and precision on a topic that remains critically important.
Paula Thomson, PsyD, Associate Professor, California State University, Northridge & Professor Emeritus, York University

"I am enthralled.
Dr. Janov has crafted a compelling and prophetic opus that could rightly dictate
PhD thesis topics for decades to come. Devoid of any "New Age" pseudoscience,
this work never strays from scientific orthodoxy and yet is perfectly accessible and
downright fascinating to any lay person interested in the mysteries of the human psyche."
Dr. Bernard Park, MD, MPH

His new book “Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script that Rules Our Lives” shows that primal therapy, the lower-brain therapeutic method popularized in the 1970’s international bestseller “Primal Scream” and his early work with John Lennon, may help alleviate depression and anxiety disorders, normalize blood pressure and serotonin levels, and improve the functioning of the immune system.
One of the book’s most intriguing theories is that fetal imprinting, an evolutionary strategy to prepare children to cope with life, establishes a permanent set-point in a child's physiology. Baby's born to mothers highly anxious during pregnancy, whether from war, natural disasters, failed marriages, or other stressful life conditions, may thus be prone to mental illness and brain dysfunction later in life. Early traumatic events such as low oxygen at birth, painkillers and antidepressants administered to the mother during pregnancy, poor maternal nutrition, and a lack of parental affection in the first years of life may compound the effect.
In making the case for a brand-new, unified field theory of psychotherapy, Dr. Janov weaves together the evolutionary theories of Jean Baptiste Larmarck, the fetal development studies of Vivette Glover and K.J.S. Anand, and fascinating new research by the psychiatrist Elissa Epel suggesting that telomeres—a region of repetitive DNA critical in predicting life expectancy—may be significantly altered during pregnancy.
After explaining how hormonal and neurologic processes in the womb provide a blueprint for later mental illness and disease, Dr. Janov charts a revolutionary new course for psychotherapy. He provides a sharp critique of cognitive behavioral therapy, psychoanalysis, and other popular “talk therapy” models for treating addiction and mental illness, which he argues do not reach the limbic system and brainstem, where the effects of early trauma are registered in the nervous system.
“Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script that Rules Our Lives” is scheduled to be published by NTI Upstream in October 2011, and has tremendous implications for the future of modern psychology, pediatrics, pregnancy, and women’s health.