The Transformation of Trauma with Bessel van der Kolk and Gabor Maté

The Body Keeps the Score – Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma – is probably the most comprehensive book out there on trauma at this moment of time.

If people have suffered severe trauma it can be extremely difficult to experience anything even remotely close to inner peace. This book gives both deep insight into trauma and gives a wide range of options one can explore to transform it.

Bessel van der Kolk has been treating people with severe trauma for over 30 years and explains in great detail, from his scientific and practical viewpoint, how trauma works, how trauma sets into our body, brain and mind, and what the options are to explore the transformation of this trauma.

The book consists of 5 parts:

1) The rediscovery of trauma.
2) This is your brain on trauma.
3) The minds of children.
4) The imprint of trauma.
5) Paths to recovery.

Reading this book really helps people understand how trauma works and how it can influence people and their behavior. If people are dealing with trauma, like child abuse, physical or sexual abuse, having been in a war and been witness to murder then this book can really help. This book is really about the heavy stuff that can happen to people in life.

Trauma is a fact of life. Veterans and their families deal with the painful aftermath of combat; one in five people in the US has been molested; one in four grew up with alcoholics; one in three couples have engaged in physical violence — the body keeps the score.

That’s how Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, one of the world’s leading experts on developmental trauma, explains how our long-term health and happiness can be compromised by prior exposure to violence, emotional abuse, and other forms of traumatic stress.

In his book, Dr. van der Kolk explores how treatments — ranging from meditation and neurofeedback to yoga, sports, and drama — offer new paths to healing and wellness.

The book is interesting for anybody who wants to understand trauma better, just out of curiosity, or maybe you know people who have severe trauma and then this book can really help to understand those people better. Even though severe trauma may never be totally overcome this book and the various treatment options it explores should definitely help people find more peace within themselves again.

In this short interview with the author he gives some insights on how people can heal their trauma.


Another trauma expert is Dr.Gabor Maté, who has written a great book also: The Myth of Normal – Trauma, Illness & Healing in a Toxic Culture.

Western countries invest billions in healthcare, yet mental illness and chronic diseases are on a seemingly unstoppable rise. Nearly 70% of Americans are now on prescription drugs. So what is ‘normal’ when it comes to health?

Over four decades of clinical experience, renowned physician and addiction expert Dr Gabor Maté has seen how health systems neglect the role that trauma exerts on our bodies and our minds. Medicine often fails to treat the whole person, ignoring how today’s culture stresses our bodies, burdens our immune systems and undermines emotional balance.

Now, in his most ambitious and urgent book yet, Dr Maté connects the dots between our personal suffering and the pressures of modern-day living – with disease as a natural reflection of a life spent growing further and further apart from our true selves. But, with deep compassion, he also shows us a pathway to health and healing.

Filled with stories of people in the grip of illness or in the triumphant wake of recovery, this life-affirming book, co-written with his son Daniel, proves true health is possible – if we are willing to reconnect with each other and our authentic selves.

He has great interviews on YouTube and he explains his views in a documentary in 2021 with the name: The Wisdom of Trauma.

You can watch the trailer on YouTube:

And you can watch the whole documentary on Bitchute.