您现在的位置: 纽约时报中英文网 >> 纽约时报中英文版 >> 健康 >> 正文

抑郁症治疗:来自澳大利亚土著的六万年古方

更新时间:2019/10/12 20:22:46 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

A 60,000-year-old cure for depression
抑郁症治疗:来自澳大利亚土著的六万年古方

There I was, on a cold but bright day in late autumn, wearing nothing but my bathing suit, lying on a pile of kangaroo skins and engulfed in plumes of smouldering leaves from a peppermint tree by the banks of a sacred river.

在深秋一个寒冷而晴朗的日子里,我除了泳衣什么也没穿,躺在一堆袋鼠皮上,在神圣河岸边的一棵薄荷树上,被冒着浓烟的树叶团团包围着。

Kwoorabup has been a place of ceremony for thousands of years. The river, located near the small town of Denmark, 360km south-east of Western Australia’s capital, Perth, was given its name by the local Noongar people, who believe it was formed by the Wagyl, a giant serpent from the creation period known as the Dreaming.

数千年来,库拉布(Kwoorabup)一直是举行仪式的地方。这条河在丹麦小镇附近,位于西澳大利亚首府珀斯东南面360公里处,由当地的诺加(Noongar)命名,他们相信这条河是由瓦格(Wagyl)形成的,瓦格是一条来自造物时期的巨蛇。

Most people journey to this wild coastal stretch of Western Australia’s Great Southern region to visit vineyards, sample delicious produce and holiday by its strip of stunning beaches, but I was there to have my spirit rebalanced by the local medicine man, Joey Williams.

大多数人前往西澳大利亚南部这片偏远的沿海地区,是为了参观葡萄园,品尝美味的农产品,并在迷人的海滩边度假。但我去那里,是为了让我的精神在当地传统治疗师威廉姆斯(Joey Williams)的帮助下恢复平静。

Australia’s indigenous Aboriginal people have the oldest living culture on Earth. For around 60,000 years, their intricate understanding of ecology ensured survival, and their physical, spiritual, mental and emotional well-being was achieved by maintaining healthy, balanced relationships with all living and non-living things.

澳大利亚土著居民拥有地球上最古老的生态文化。大约6万年来,他们对生态的复杂理解确保了他们的生存。他们通过与所有生物和非生物保持健康、平衡的关系,来实现自我身体、精神和情感方面的健康。

At the heart of their communities were traditional healers. They have been respected and entrusted with the well-being of Aboriginal communities for as long as the culture has been alive, yet still today surprisingly little is known of them. The few healers who remain, of which Williams is one, have extensive knowledge of Aboriginal culture and are believed to possess supernatural abilities. Their role is to treat physical, mental and spiritual ailments using bush medicine, smoking ceremonies and spirit realignment – the latter being a common remedy for depression, or what indigenous Australians call “sickness of the spirit”.

土著居民社区的核心是传统治疗师。自从土著文化存在以来,他们就一直受到尊重,并被认为是土著社区的福祉,然而令人惊讶的是,直到今天,人们对他们知之甚少。现存留的几个治疗师,威廉姆斯就是其中之一,他们有丰富的土著文化知识,并被认为具有超自然的能力。他们能用丛林药物、吸烟仪式和精神重组来治疗身体、精神和情感上的疾病。精神重组是治疗抑郁症的一种常见疗法,澳大利亚土著人称之为“精神疾病”。

In 2017, the World Health Organization published a study stating the total number of people living with depression in 2015 was estimated to exceed 300 million – an increase of more than 18.4% since 2005.

2017年,世界卫生组织公布了一项研究数据,称2015年抑郁症患者总数估计超过3亿,比2005年增加了18.4%。

More recently, the Australian Medical Association announced their agreement with other leading global health organisations, declaring climate change a “health emergency” that will cause a higher incidence of mental ill-health, among other health-related issues. With modern living an apparent threat to both mental well-being and the planet ­– and having personally battled with depression myself – I had wondered whether answers could be found by looking back to the wisdom of the world’s oldest continuous civilisation.

最近,澳大利亚医学协会(Australian Medical Association)与全球主要卫生组织达成协议,宣布气候变化为“健康紧急情况”,将导致更高的精神疾病发病率,以及其他与健康相关的问题。现代生活显然对人类的精神健康和地球构成了威胁,而且我本人也曾与抑郁症作过斗争,我曾想,能否从回顾世界上最古老的智慧和延续至今的文明中找到答案。

An Aboriginal elder and mubarrn, meaning “medicine” or “lore” man in the local Noongar language, Williams told me his healing ability has been passed down through his ancestral lineage. For him, and other Aboriginal healers, the most important first step in relation to healing is the ability to reconnect to the land, since for indigenous Australians, connection to country represents connection to their culture. For this reason, we’d started the healing ceremony the previous day in the Stirling Range National Park, a 90-minute drive north of Kwoorabup, to experience a reconnection ceremony at an ancient sacred site on the traditional lands of the Koreng tribe to which he belongs.

一位土著长者的穆巴林(mubarrn),在当地诺加语中意思是“医术”或“传说”。威廉姆斯告诉我,他的治愈能力是从他的祖先那传承下来的。对他和其他土著治疗师来说,治愈过程中最重要的第一步是恢复与土地联系的能力,对土著澳大利亚人来说,与土地的联系代表着与他们文化的联系。出于这个原因,我们在前一天就在斯特林岭国家公园(Stirling Range National Park),位于库拉布以北90分钟车程的地方开始了治疗仪式,在他所属的科伦(Koreng)部落传统土地上的一个古老圣地,我们体验了重新连接的仪式。

Western Australia’s only southern mountain range is an area of extraordinary beauty. It’s one of the few places in the state that gets snow, and spring sees it dotted with an array of brightly coloured wildflowers. Home to 1,500 species, many growing nowhere else, it’s one of the world’s most important areas for flora.

西澳大利亚唯一的南部山脉是一个非常美丽的地区。它是该州为数不多的几个降雪的地方。春天,这里点缀着五颜六色的野花,有近1500种植物,很多是其它地方所没有的,是世界上最重要的植物区之一。

Many of these native plants have medicinal properties, and because Williams spent his early childhood living off the land with family, it’s no wonder that he, now in his late 50s, refers to the area as his “supermarket” and “pharmacy”.

许多本地植物都有药用价值,威廉姆斯早年就和家人一起生活在这片土地上,难怪现在50多岁的他,仍然把这片土地称为他的“超市”和“药房”。

Wading through knee-high grass, Williams showed me how to dig for bloodroot (good for numbing toothache) and gather resin formed from the oozing red antiseptic sap of a marri tree, which strangely resembled the very thing it is known for healing – an open wound. “It cures stomach ache too,” he said.

在没膝高的草丛中,威廉姆斯向我展示了如何挖掘血根草(治疗牙痛的麻药),以及如何从一棵美叶桉树(marri)中收集渗出的红色无菌汁液形成的树脂。奇怪的是它从裂口中渗出,却有类似治愈开放性伤口的作用。威廉姆斯说:“它还能治胃痛。”

As we walked, Williams demonstrated that to him and other indigenous Australians, the land is very much alive, with songlines (cultural memory codes that hold knowledge of a place and define the responsibilities attached to kinship and lore) scattered across its skin. After singing the specific songline attached to the spot we were standing, Williams “read” the land to me, pointing out peaks like chapters. “There’s Bulla Meile, the hill of eyes,” he said. More commonly known as Bluff Knoll, southern Western Australia‘s highest peak is where the Koreng people believe they return after death. “And straight out in front of us is Talyuberlup. See her face, breast and stomach?” he asked, tracing curves in the air. “Meaning beautiful woman sleeping. She’s the protector of this range.”

我们在行走时,威廉姆斯用歌声向我们和其他澳大利土著人证明,这片土地充满了生机,在它的肌肤上到处散落着歌曲(歌曲是文化记忆的代码,承载着一个地方的知识,也定义了亲属关系和学识相关的责任)。威廉姆斯唱完与我们所站地点相关的歌后,又带我“读”了这片土地,像章节一样指出山峰。他说:“这就是布拉·迈尔峰(Bulla Meile),为瞭望之峰。”更广为人知的名字是布拉夫·诺尔峰(Bluff Knoll),西澳大利亚南部的最高峰,科伦人认为他们死后返回的地方。“就在我们前面的是塔卢伯鲁普山(Talyuberlup)。看到她的脸、胸和肚子了吗?”他一边在空中画着曲线,一边问道。“意思是美丽的女人在睡觉。她是这一带的保护者。”

Following his gaze, the undulating countryside did indeed look like an expecting mother resting, and served as a reminder that Aboriginal people see the land as a “mother” and a guide for reciprocal wellness.

在他的指视下,起伏的山峰看起来确实是像一位满怀期待的母亲在休息,并提醒人们,土著人把土地视为“母亲”也是互惠健康的向导。

Back in the car, we continued on to Wickelenup, a semi-dry salt lake that is a “power ground”, a place where the Koreng people have performed ceremonial reconnection rites for thousands of years. Wickelenup means “lake of many colours” and it’s named for the ochre pits resting beside it. These large deposits of clay earth produce pigments ranging from pale yellows to deep reds, which, when painted on the body during a ceremony, represent the important connection that indigenous Australians have with the land.

回到车里,我们继续前往韦克伦普湖(Wickelenup),这是一个半干燥的盐湖,也是一个“能量场”,数千年来,科伦人一直在这里举行重新连接的仪式。韦克伦普的意思是“多种颜色的湖”,它的名字来源于它旁边的赭石坑。这些大量的粘土沉积物会产生从淡黄色到深红色的颜料,当人们举行仪式时,把这些颜料涂在身体上,就代表了土著人与土地之间有了重要联系。

Entering Wickelenup, Williams used clapsticks and what he called a “protection song” to summon his ancestors for the protection and blessing of our steps upon the Earth. After crossing a bed of clay that looked as if giant tins of red and yellow paint had been dropped from the sky, he led me to an oddly shaped chunk of volcanic rock that he used as a platform for grinding ochre. Williams stood with his eyes closed and sang the songline belonging to his family, the Kaarl Poorlanger, meaning “people of fire”, before mixing ochre on the stone and painting a russet-coloured pigment onto my skin in a technique known as “smudging”.

进入韦克伦普,威廉姆斯用拍手棒和他所谓的“保护之歌”召唤他的祖先来保护和祝福我们在地球上的活动。穿过一层看起来像是从天上掉下的巨大的红色和黄色黏土后,他带我找到一块形状奇特的火山岩,把它当做研磨赭石的平台。威廉姆斯闭着眼睛站在那里,唱着属于他那个家族的歌《卡维尔·普尔朗格》(Kaarl Poorlanger),意思是“火之人”,然后在石头上混合赭石,用一种被称为“污迹”的技术在我的皮肤上涂上一种黄褐色颜料。

“This is your mark, your connection to this land. You might wash it off later but I know it’s there… and so will you,” he said.

他说:“这是你的标记,你与这片土地的联系。你可能以后会洗掉它,但我知道它在那里……你也会的。”

Looking at the symbol on my arm, I asked why he had chosen what looked like ripples in water. “I didn’t,” he said. “You chose it in your mind.” Sensing my confusion, Williams elaborated. “I only have to listen to you for half an hour and I know you.”

看着我手臂上的符号,我问他为什么选择了看起来像水波纹样的图形。他说:“我没有。是你在脑海中选择了它。”察觉到我的困惑,威廉姆斯进一步解释道。“我只要听你半个小时,我就了解你了。”

Whether healers truly possess any psychic ability, it seems a key skill Aboriginal people have honed over thousands of years is an advanced way of listening.

无论治疗师是否真的拥有心灵能力,土著人几千年来磨练了一项关键技能,一种高级的聆听方式。

Elder Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann, an Aboriginal activist, educator and artist from Australia’s Northern Territory, believes “dadirri is the Aboriginal gift” the world is thirsting for.

来自澳大利亚北部地区的土著活动家、教育家和艺术家昂冈梅尔—鲍曼(Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann)认为,“达迪(dadirri)是土著人的礼物”是世界所渴望的。

Meaning “inner deep listening and quiet still awareness” in her Ngangikurungkurr language, dadirri is a form of mindfulness and reciprocal empathy we can develop with the land, each other and ourselves, according to Ungunmerr-Baumann. “We call on it and it calls to us… It is something like what you call ‘contemplation’,” she writes on her website.

在她的朗格库尔(Ngangikurungkurr)语言中,达迪的意思是“内心深处的倾听和宁静的意识”,根据昂冈梅尔 鲍曼的说法,达迪是一种正念和相互同理心的形式,我们可以与土地、彼此和自己一起发展。她在自己的网站上写道:“我们呼唤它,它也呼唤我们……这有点像我们所说的‘沉思’。”

For indigenous Australians, this spiritual listening practice provides a way to observe and act according to the natural seasons and cycles in a way the modern world seems to have forgotten. “We watch the bush foods and wait for them to ripen before we gather them. When a relation dies, we wait a long time with the sorrow. We own our grief and allow it to heal slowly,” she told me.

对于澳大利亚土著居民来说,这种精神倾听的活动提供了一种观察和遵循自然规律行事的方式,而现代世界似乎忘记了这一点。她告诉我:“我们观察灌木丛中的食物,等它们成熟后再采摘。当亲人去世时,我们会悲伤地等待很久。我们承认自己的悲伤,让它慢慢愈合。”

While much ancient Aboriginal wisdom and culture has already been lost, elders such as Ungunmerr-Baumann are striving to keep what’s left alive, but it’s not an easy task. When the First Fleet of British settlers arrived in Australia in 1788, Australia’s indigenous population was thought to be around 750,000. Ten years later, it was estimated to have dropped by 90%, due to the introduction of new diseases and violent clashes with the European colonisers. Today, indigenous Australians make up just 3.3% of the population. The forced separation of families and removal of Aboriginal people from their traditional lands, lore and practices affected the passing of cultural knowledge and led to the intergenerational trauma that is still being experienced today.

虽然许多古老的土著人的智慧和文化已经消失,但像昂冈梅乐 鲍曼这样的长者仍在努力让留下的东西存活下去,但这并不是一件容易的事。当第一批英国殖民者于1788年抵达澳大利亚时,澳大利亚的土著人口大约为75万。10年后,由于新疾病的出现,以及与欧洲殖民者的暴力冲突,人口大约下降了90%。今天,土著澳大利亚人只占总人口的3.3%。(土著居民儿童重新安置计划)强迫家庭分离和将土著人从传统领地、文化和习俗中赶出,影响了文化知识的传承,并导致了今天仍在经历的代际创伤。

But one woman advocating for greater recognition of traditional Aboriginal healing principles, practices and medicine is Dr Francesca Panzironi, a human rights academic from Rome. The CEO of Australia’s first organisation of Aboriginal traditional healers, Panzironi formed Anangu Ngangkari Tjutaku Aboriginal Corporation (ANTAC), with Ngangkari (healers of Australia’s central desert areas) in 2012.

潘齐罗尼博士(Dr Francesca Panzironi)是一位来自罗马的女性人权学者,她主张更多地承认土著传统的治疗原则、做法和医学。她是澳大利亚第一个土著传统医学组织的首席执行官,她在2012年与澳大利亚中部沙漠地区的治疗师尼岗卡利(Ngangkari)合作,组建了安南古·尼冈卡利·安塔克土著传统医学组织(Anangu Ngangkari Tjutaku Aboriginal Corporation; ANTAC)。

“For indigenous people, it’s about reconnecting to culture and accessing healing techniques that are different from Western medicine,” Panzironi said. “Western medicine looks at the body from a mechanistic perspective, whereas healers highlight everyone has a spirit that intimately links to the body and emotions.”

潘齐罗尼说:“对土著人来说,这是一种重新连接文化和获得不同于西方医学的治疗技术。西方医学从机械的角度看待身体,而土著治疗师则强调每个人都有一种与身体和情感密切相连的精神。”

Although traditional Aboriginal medicine is not recognised as an alternative medicine in Australia (due to difficulty regulating spiritual practices and the lack of testing of bush medicines), Ngangkaris are recognised in South Australian legislation through the Mental Health Act of 2009, and ANTAC now has healers working alongside Western doctors and mental health experts in some public hospitals. They provide “complementary” treatments to medical care for indigenous Australians – something especially beneficial for people recovering from intergenerational trauma, stemming from colonisation.

虽然在澳大利亚不承认传统土著医学是一种替代医学(由于难以规范精神活动和缺乏对灌木丛药物的检测),但尼岗卡利治疗师通过2009年的《精神健康法》在南澳大利亚立法中得到承认。现在安塔克(Antac)的治疗师在一些公立医院里与西医和心理健康专家一起工作。他们为土著澳大利亚人的医疗保健提供“补充”治疗,这对那些从殖民时代的创伤中恢复过来的人尤其有益。

Panzironi says there has been increased interest from non-indigenous people, too, who are dissatisfied with the mainstream model and are looking for alternatives. “We had a middle-aged woman who reduced her intake of antidepressants significantly over a six-month period of regular pampuni (a massage technique used for spirit realignment by the Ngangkari, particularly in the stomach, which is thought to be connected to the mind), in consultation with her GP. Both the woman and her doctor noticed improvement in her mental health,” she said.

潘齐罗尼说,非土著人的兴趣也在增加,他们对主流治疗模式不满意,正在寻找替代方案。“在我们这里接受治疗的一位中年妇女,她通过咨询家庭医生,在6个月的常规帕米尼(pampuni)(传统治疗师用于精神调整的按摩技术,尤其对胃部不适,认为与精神有关)治疗期间,减少了抗抑郁药的摄入量,她感觉到精神状况明显改善。”

Currently ANTAC has a mobile clinic allowing Ngangkaris to travel to patients in areas of Australia where access to their services are non-existent, but Panzironi would like to see hospital programmes similar to the one in South Australia rolled out nationwide. “The goal is to have Aboriginal traditional medicine recognised as an alternative medicine and to make healers commonplace, as a viable choice for everyone through Medicare [Australia’s universal health care system],” she told me.

目前,安塔克拥有一个移动诊所,可以让尼岗卡利的治疗师前往澳大利亚那些无法获得服务的地区,但潘齐罗尼希望看到类似于南澳大利亚的医院项目在全国范围内推广。她告诉我:“我们的目标是让土著传统医学被确认为一种替代医学,并让治疗师的治疗成为一种可行的选择,通过医疗保险(澳大利亚的全民医疗体系)成为每个人的可行选择。”

Back at Kwoorabup, Williams was preparing for the final stage of my spirit realignment ceremony. After using smoke to cleanse and protect our surroundings from bad spirits, as is the traditional ceremonial practice among Aboriginal people, he placed a small stone upon my navel – a tool, he said, to absorb my vibration or spirit.

回到库拉布,威廉姆斯正在为我的精神重建仪式做最后阶段的准备。他用烟来净化和保护我们周围的环境免受恶灵的侵袭,这是土著人的传统仪式,然后他在我的肚脐上放了一块小石头,他说,这是一种吸收我的“振动”或精神的工具。

“We’re all made up of vibration,” Williams said. “It’s connected at birth through the umbilical cord. It’s the essence of who we are.” Through his water vibrational healing ceremony, something that is unique to mubarrn of the area, he explained that I’d be able hear my spirit amplified when he placed the stone in the river. “High vibration means anxiety,” Williams said. “Low vibration is depression. I’ll take your vibration and balance it by releasing it through a portal I’ll open in your back.”

威廉姆斯说:“我们都是由振动组成的。它在出生时通过脐带连接。这是我们的本质。”这种水振动疗愈仪式,是该地区穆巴林所特有的。当他把石头放到河里时,我能感到自己的精神状态得到了提升。威廉姆斯说:“高振动意味着焦虑,低振动就是抑郁。我将通过打开你背部的一个入口,来释放你的振动并使之平衡。”

I had known the water would be cold, but that still hadn’t prepared me for the shock I felt when it came time to immerse myself in the river. Floating on my back, with Williams holding me, I tried to relax and listen to my “vibration” with the stone now held against my spine, but my shuddering body wouldn’t cooperate.

我知道水会很冷,但这仍然没有让我做好准备,当我到了把自己浸入河里时,我感到震惊。我仰面漂浮,威廉姆斯抱着我,我试着放松一下,听着我的“振动”,石头现在靠在我的脊椎上,但我颤抖的身体不肯配合。

Pain from the freezing water intensified and I was also experiencing discomfort because I was unused to feeling supported. An irrational fear came over me – if I didn’t break free, to move by myself in a way I was used to, I might sink. But then I felt a strange force pushing up from under me and realised it wasn’t just Williams supporting me, but the river itself.

冰冷的水使我的疼痛加剧,我感到不舒服,因为我不习惯被支持的感觉。一种莫名的恐惧袭上心头,如果我不挣脱出来,按我习惯的方式自己移动,我可能会沉下去。但接着我感到一股奇怪的力量从我身下往上推,我意识到不仅是威廉姆斯在支撑我,河流本身也在支撑着我。

Doing as Williams asked – to relinquish control and acknowledge pain and trust – I tipped my head back and focused on the warmth of the sun’s rays. I remembered something I’d read earlier by Ungunmerr-Baumann. “We cannot hurry the river. We have to move with its current and understand its ways,” she’d written. Moments later, much to my disbelief, my ears filled with a sound like the motor of a distant power boat, growing louder and resonating within – sounding a lot like anxiety, according to Williams’ earlier description. Letting go, I breathed out and went under.

按照威廉姆斯的要求,放弃控制,承认痛苦和信任,我仰起头,专注于温暖的阳光。我记起我之前读过的昂冈梅尔 鲍曼的一篇文章。她写道:“我们不能赶河过去。我们必须跟上潮流,了解它的方式。”片刻之后,令我难以置信的是,我的耳朵里充满了一种声音,像是远处一艘动力船的马达声,声音越来越大,在我的内心产生了共鸣,就像威廉姆斯之前描述的那样,这声音听起来很像是焦虑。松开了,我喘了一口气,然后就沉下去了。

From my own experience, recovering from depression is a little like resurfacing from a cold river; thoughts like colours and sounds seem brighter, louder, clearer. And even if there’s no magic fix for mental illness, it seems indigenous Australians have much to teach us about developing greater awareness and reciprocity with our planet for our physical and emotional survival – if we only take the time to listen.

从我自己的经验来看,从抑郁中恢复过来有点像从冰冷的河水中浮出水面,精神就像颜色和声音一样,似乎更明亮、更响亮、更清晰。即使没有治疗精神疾病的灵丹妙药,澳大利亚土著居民也有很多东西值得我们学习,如果我们肯花时间去倾听。他们能更深层地意识到,只有与土地建立互惠关系,才能确保身体和精神的安宁。

“You need to ask, who you are, why you’re here, where you’re going,” Ungunmerr-Baumann told me. “We know who we are as Aboriginal people. It’s in our language, dreaming, country. We’re waiting for all people to listen and hear what we hear so that we can connect and belong together.”

昂冈梅尔—鲍曼告诉我:“你需要问问自己,你是谁,你为什么在这里,你要去哪里。作为原住民,我们知道自己是谁。以及我们的语言,梦想,土地。我们在等待所有人和我们一样倾听,这样才能建立联系,共同归属。”

“全文请访问纽约时报中文网,本文发表于纽约时报中文网(http://cn.nytimes.com),版权归纽约时报公司所有。任何单位及个人未经许可,不得擅自转载或翻译。订阅纽约时报中文网新闻电邮:http://nytcn.me/subscription/”

相关文章列表