Bodhi Tree Yoga Resort

The Warrior as Healer, The Healer as Warrior

"I should have admitted more often how little I knew, and more teachers would have appeared. I should have known that suffering shouldn't be suppressed, because suffering is a great teacher." ~ Marlon Brando

Marlon Brando

Bodhi Tree Yoga ResortNext month, I’ll be teaching alongside three excellent teachers from Trial Lawyers College—Tyson Logan, Mel Orchard, and Nelson Tyrone. This will take place at The Bodhi Tree Yoga Resort on the Pacific in Nosara, Costa Rica.

“A place for recovery, rejuvenation, centering, and finding voice—peace, happiness, health, and growth. Becoming better.”

I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea of The Warrior as The Healer. Here are the basic definitions for both:

  • Warrior: a brave or experienced soldier or fighter
  • Healer: a person or thing that alleviates distress or anguish

It seems to be that the common ground between both the Warrior and Healer is Courage.

Of course, Brando was right when he said that “suffering is a great teacher.” I’ve experienced that truth in my own life as I know this to be true for so many others. That very suffering and pain are what we relate to practically more than anything else because, if we are honest, we all battle with these aspects within our own selves. And if we face the ugliness and learn from it, we grow more powerful and ultimately… we heal.

What Brando was saying was not just about simply facing suffering, but even more being open and courageous and vulnerable enough to let others in on his pain, his humanness. When we bury who we are and the fear we’re trying to hide, it pushes people away. It forms a wall around us that doesn’t let us out and doesn’t let others in. We put far more energy into shoving down our suffering selves and then wonder why we come off as unapproachable, disingenuous, distant. And then you never grow beyond the pain. You can’t heal. The multitude of other teachers that Brando could have had didn’t show up because Brando himself didn’t show up.

Does this sound familiar?

Use It

Thing is, pain and suffering are essentials, realities to being alive, to being human. That’s what the most seasoned actors know to be true. They use that darkness to convey a compelling story to their audience that is relatable, real, understandable and they bring it into the light. They reach down into the depths of their imagination and experience and create magic with their words, their bodies, their faces—the whole enchilada.

A powerful storyteller uses pain and suffering without playing the pitty-party thing. A powerful storyteller—whether that is a trial lawyer, a teacher, an inmate, any and everybody wanting to transform their audience/jurors/classroom, etc. into believers—must reveal what it is to be a warrior and then to have the courage to be vulnerable as the healer.

We each have the power to be both; to face the suffering and pain as well as the redemptive power of hope and shine a spotlight on each. That is the symbolism behind the theatrical Comedy and Tragedy masks–the duality of both in our lives.

Embrace It

Marriage and Family Therapist, Vanessa Smith Bennett says, “There is no light without dark, no joy without sadness. If we don’t experience all feelings, we have no basis for comparison. If we run from certain emotions by staying busy, expressing fake positivity, or abusing mood-altering substances, we are cutting away half our existence. When we stop and honor difficult emotions, we have the opportunity to live fully and integrate all parts of ourselves. These feelings will torment us until we stop running from them—and from the truth of who we are.”

The Warrior/Healer is both Darkness and Light

The Truth Will Set You… and Your Audience… Free

A strong storyteller must shine a light on the truth even if that truth is raw and ugly and shocking. The audience/jurors must feel the pain and suffering of the story without succumbing to it. There must be the promise of light to get us through the intense journey and suffering felt within the darkness of the story.

“Vulnerability is terrifying; the courage it takes to reveal your heart is one of the most daunting—and yet rewarding experiences in life. It will set you free.” ~ The Better Man Project

In order to move your audience/jurors you must first tap into that place of fear and vulnerability that live within you. Before you can even stand before anyone you need to stand before yourself first.

Whatever we are storytelling must come from a place of passionate understanding and awareness of the human condition—the strength and vulnerability of what it means to be human. No pompous posturing will work. When we show our metaphorical underbellies and tell it like it is, that’s the key to telling the winning story. That’s the true victory of vulnerability.

That is being both the Warrior and The Healer.

Working with You and Your Trial Team

I’d love to talk to you about working with you and your trial team on your current or upcoming case. Please feel free to give me a call.

Ways to benefit from Tell The Winning Story: