Feeling Distressed after the Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan

During the past couple of weeks I’ve had a malaise I couldn’t quite identify, an uneasy feeling of being less grounded than usual.

Before I realized where it was coming from, I checked with family and friends; they too had been experiencing distress they couldn’t explain.

The earthquake and tsunami in Japan have led to a huge loss of human life… We’ve all been glued to our televisions as the news has unfolded. Put whatever label on it you want, but the catastrophic events in Japan have been leaving a lot of us feeling ungrounded.

As I reflect on my own distress I recall having been there before. I had that same feeling following the 2006 tsunami swamping Southeast Asia and the 2010 earthquake devastating Haiti.

There is a lot of modern thought about how all of us human beings are interconnected energetically. It comes out of quantum physics, psychology, spiritual disciplines and elsewhere. But most of the time you are not conscious of your connectedness with others.

Sometimes, however, you are fully conscious of it. If you were deeply connected to another person who then died, you may well have felt as if part of you had died with them. I know that feeling all too well. Anyone who has gone through such loss knows it to be a frighteningly ungrounding experience.

If you live in a small community and have ever experienced a number of people dying in a fire or a boat sinking, you will know how the whole community goes through something similar, leaving everyone distressed.

In the devastation of Japan many have died. As a consequence of so many human lives being lost, you may have had moments of feeling a bit like you were slipping away too. Many have this experience. Remember, you are energetically connected to everyone else. This is where that feeling of being ungrounded comes from.

I am describing something happening energetically, but if that is too hard for you to swallow, think of it at least metaphorically, and stay with me for a moment as I extend the idea.

Perhaps when you experience being ungrounded in the wake of massive death, you are being pulled a little bit out of your normal human connection to the earth into the beyond along with those who actually have passed on. Becoming grounded again is your coming back to earth to continue your human journey.

Whether or not the above speculation makes any sense to you, if something feels wrong inside after such massive loss of life, you would be well served to do something to reground yourself, the first step being to just be aware your connection to the earth is probably weakened.

Then reground yourself using whatever works for you, whether energy tools or walking, whether prayer or re-bonding with family.

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Dr. Neill Neill retired his psychology practice at the end of 2013. He maintains an active coaching practice via telephone or Skype with select clients dealing with alcoholic husbands or ex-husbands. Check out his book, Living with a Functioning Alcoholic: A Woman's Survival Guide. http://drneillneill.com

3 thoughts on “Feeling Distressed after the Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan

  1. This brave story lifted my spirits, I hope it cheers you too.

    A letter from Sendai


    Things here in Sendai have been rather surreal. But I am very blessed to

    have wonderful friends who are helping me a lot. Since my shack is even more worthy of that name, I am now staying at a friend’s home. We share supplies like water, food and a kerosene heater. We sleep lined up in one room, eat by candlelight, share stories. It is warm, friendly, and beautiful.

    During the day we help each other clean up the mess in our homes. People sit

    in their cars, looking at news on their navigation screens, or line up to

    get drinking water when a source is open. If someone has water running in

    their home, they put out a sign so people can come to fill up their jugs and


    It’s utterly amazingly that where I am there has been no looting, no pushing

    in lines. People leave their front door open, as it is safer when an

    earthquake strikes. People keep saying, “Oh, this is how it used to be in

    the old days when everyone helped one another.”

    Quakes keep coming. Last night they struck about every 15 minutes. Sirens

    are constant and helicopters pass overhead often.

    We got water for a few hours in our homes last night, and now it is for half

    a day. Electricity came on this afternoon. Gas has not yet come on. But all

    of this is by area. Some people have these things, others do not. No one has

    washed for several days. We feel grubby, but there are so much more

    important concerns than that for us now. I love this peeling away of

    non-essentials. Living fully on the level of instinct, of intuition, of

    caring, of what is needed for survival, not just of me, but of the entire


    There are strange parallel universes happening. Houses a mess in some

    places, yet then a house with futons or laundry out drying in the sun.

    People lining up for water and food, and yet a few people out walking their

    dogs. All happening at the same time.

    Other unexpected touches of beauty are first, the silence at night. No cars.

    No one out on the streets. And the heavens at night are scattered with

    stars. I usually can see about two, but now the whole sky is filled. The

    mountains are Sendai are solid and with the crisp air we can see them

    silhouetted against the sky magnificently.

    And the Japanese themselves are so wonderful. I come back to my shack to

    check on it each day, now to send this e-mail since the electricity is on,

    and I find food and water left in my entranceway. I have no idea from whom,

    but it is there. Old men in green hats go from door to door checking to see

    if everyone is OK. People talk to complete strangers asking if they need

    help. I see no signs of fear. Resignation, yes, but fear or panic, no.

    They tell us we can expect aftershocks, and even other major quakes, for

    another month or more. And we are getting constant tremors, rolls, shaking,

    rumbling. I am blessed in that I live in a part of Sendai that is a bit

    elevated, a bit more solid than other parts. So, so far this area is better

    off than others. Last night my friend’s husband came in from the country,

    bringing food and water. Blessed again.

    Somehow at this time I realize from direct experience that there is indeed

    an enormous Cosmic evolutionary step that is occurring all over the world

    right at this moment. And somehow as I experience the events happening now in Japan, I can feel my heart opening very wide. My brother asked me if I

    felt so small because of all that is happening. I don’t. Rather, I feel as

    part of something happening that much larger than myself. This wave of

    birthing (worldwide) is hard, and yet magnificent.

    Thank you again for your care and Love of me.

    Also Basically, an anti-radiation diet

    should focus on the following foods:
    · Miso soup· Spirulina, chlorella and the algaes (kelp, etc.)· Brassica vegetables and high beta carotene vegetables· Beans and lentils· Potassium, calcium and mineral rich foods· High nucleotide content foods to assist in cellular repair including spirulina, chlore…lla, algae,

    yeast, sardines, liver, anchovies and mackerel
    · Cod liver oil and olive oil· Avoid sugars and sweets and wheat

  2. When we identify ourselves as only a flesh and blood human body, we have to be moved like a wave being tossed about in the ocean…experiencing highs when we feel that things are going well and lows when we see loss and limitation.

    It is only when we come into realization that our true real selves exist beyond these bodies of flesh seen with our physical eyes that we experience a peace that passes all understanding even in the midst of what our eyes perceive as chaos.

    At the present moment, even some here reading this are feeling the drawing within themselves to perceive this other eternal level of living and moving and having our Being.

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