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A Masterclass for Healers

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A Masterclass for Healers is a very thorough course that covers many different ideas concerning society, human development, addiction, generational trauma, and healing techniques. If you want an at-a-glance look at some of the most important points Gabor covers in the course, you can use this outline as a reference.

You can skip this section if you’d rather get straight to the course.

Lesson One: The Power of Connection

Healing the Healer

  • We all have different parts inside ourselves, and the more parts you can heal, the more effective you will be at helping others heal

The Rising Epidemic of Addiction

  • Statistically, addiction has been on the rise in recent decades, as have cases of many conditions such as ADHD, anxiety, autism, and autoimmune diseases.

The Mind-Body Connection

  • The Mind-Body Connection is the well-backed concept that the mind is inseparable from the body. Your mental and physical health are one and the same, and most importantly, prolonged stress can actually cause illnesses to develop.
  • Why All The Stress?
    • We are seeing increased rates of disease and addiction because of an increase in societal stress. Factors increasing societal stress include rapid technological advancement, overreliance on certain drugs, ease of access to harmful substances, and most importantly, a lack of interpersonal connection.

How Today’s Society Fails to Meet Our Needs

  • Human beings evolved to be accustomed to a very different society than we live in today. Today’s society fails to meet our evolutionary needs in several major ways. Perhaps the most impactful way is the fact that babies are no longer receiving the type of interpersonal connection that is ideal for healthy brain development. 

The Societal Component of Stress and Illness

  • Gabor points out that any time a group of people has higher rates of certain conditions, it is a reflection of something in the culture. For example, African Americans have higher rates of asthma than other ethnic groups, regardless of access to medical care. This reflects the fact that our society creates a heightened state of stress for African Americans.

Looking at the Big Picture

  • Gabor believes the Western medical mind should embrace a trauma-informed view of treatment. Doctors should acknowledge the mind-body connection, and we should embrace our innate capacity as human beings to heal ourselves.

Lesson Two: Exploring the Mind-Body Connection

Addiction Defined

  • Addiction is manifested in any behavior that a person craves, finds temporary relief or pleasure in but suffers negative consequences as a result of, and yet has difficulty giving up

The Wounded Healer

  • When we recognize and accept our wounds, we are compelled to try to heal others who are wounded. This is considered the phenomenon of “the wounded healer.”

Compassionate Inquiry

  • Compassionate Inquiry is Gabor’s renowned method of relating to people that invites and necessitates compassion for all parts of a person: their behaviors, ideas, dysfunctions, everything.
  • There is a valid reason for all the things that people call shortcomings. Be compassionate for people’s dysfunctions because they are simply learned strategies to adapt to their circumstances. 

The Need for Attachment and Authenticity

  • Infants and young children have an inherent need for attachment. In some cases, they will sacrifice their authentic selves if their attachments are threatened

Unconditional Positive Regard

  • When interfacing with clients, it can be beneficial to express sympathy and acceptance for them regardless of their actions or the outcomes of their choices

Lesson Three: The Five Levels of Compassion

What are the Five Levels of Compassion?

  • Ordinary human compassion
  • Compassion of understanding
  • Compassion of recognition
  • Compassion of possibility
  • Compassion of truth

Shame Prevents Healing

  • Refusing to face the truth causes shame in people. Likewise, shame is a barrier to facing the truth about yourself, and without the truth, you cannot heal.

Interpersonal Neurobiology

  • Neurobiology is interpersonal, meaning your behavior toward someone else can actually affect their neurobiology. This is especially true when we interact with infants and children, but it still holds true for people of all ages.

Lesson Four: Compassion & Understanding vs. Judgments & The Disease Model


  • Gabor is a full believer in self-disclosure because the more the client gets that you’re no different than they are, the more comfortable they will feel.

Our Own Internal Work

  • If you find it hard or impossible to be compassionate toward your clients, then that means something inside you is blocking your compassion. You should find out what it is so that you can resolve it.

The Competing Models of Addiction

  • Choice model: Addiction is a choice (not scientifically sound)
  • Disease model: Addiction is a disease (addiction fits the criteria to be considered a disease in some cases, but this model is an oversimplification of a complex issue)
  • Developmental model: Addiction results from someone’s brain not getting the optimal conditions for healthy brain development (scientifically sound and observable in practice)

Solve the Pain, Not the Addiction

  • At the heart of all addictions, there is tremendous pain. The question is not why the addiction, but why the pain?


  • A lot of people with mental conditions such as PTSD or ADHD tend to self-medicate with addiction

Dopamine and Endorphins

  • Dopamine flows when you are seeking food or seeking a sex partner. It flows when we seek anything that we are evolutionarily programmed to seek for the species’ survival. This explains why addicts feel like they need the substance they are craving, as it releases an excessive amount of dopamine in the addict’s brain.

Lesson Five: Stress & Trauma on the Developing Child


  • The tuning out and absent-mindedness that characterizes ADHD is a coping mechanism that people learn when they routinely face overwhelming stress during the developmental years.

Optimal vs. Suboptimal Conditions for Brain Development

  • Optimally, infants will grow up in a network of safe, interpersonal attachments with a high level of attunement. Too much prolonged stress or too little attunement can result in suboptimal brain development.

The Adverse Childhood Experience Studies

  • Researchers have identified 10 adverse childhood experiences that can increase your likelihood of addiction and chronic illnesses:
  1. Physical abuse
  2. Sexual abuse
  3. Emotional abuse
  • This can include belittling, rejecting, ridiculing, blaming, threatening, isolating the child from social interactions
  1. Physical neglect
  2. Emotional neglect
  3. Mental illness or addiction in the family
  4. Incarcerated relative
  5. Death of a relative
  6. Witnessing violence in the family
  7. Witnessing parents’ divorce 

The Seven Impacts of Trauma

  • Disconnection from yourself
  • Disconnection from others
  • Negative distortion of world view
  • Lifelong pain
  • Inhibited brain development
  • Shame-based view of yourself
  • Difficulty being in present moment

Lesson Six: Brain Science, Physiology, & The Role of Attachment from Birth to Adulthood

The Three Autonomic States

  • Freeze (primitive, defensive)
  • Fight or flight (increased adrenaline and cortisol, more blood flow to brain)
  • Learning, growth, development, healing (activates our highest brain circuits including mid-frontal cortex)

Healing Modalities

  • Psychotherapy
  • Compassionate inquiry
  • Internal family systems
  • Somatic Experiencing
  • EMDR
  • Brain Spotting
  • Psychedelic Treatment