winter 2016, Anxiety




Welcome to the winter newsletter of the Aurora collective!

We are all hoping you had a wonderful summer and autumn, and have been enjoying the warmth we have been blessed with. And although we still enjoy some sunny days, we are slowly but surely moving our attention more inward. This is so with our activities, coming inside, in front of the fires and heaters, with that extra layer of clothing on to stay warm. It is possibly also in our inner life, coming in, bringing our thinking, our feeling and our doing back in towards our inner life, after a summer where we were drawn very much outside.


We hope again to give you lots of information in this newsletter, and this time we have our focus on Anxiety.

Continuing from our previous newsletter which focused on the senses, you will find an article on how the senses can be a window through which we can look at anxiety, maybe help to understand it, and what we can do to help children and adults alike, where the senses may be part of the reason for anxiety.


You will also find a research paper that looks at the correlation between balance and anxiety in children, and how working with balance, can decrease anxiety and improve self esteem. This was a study performed by the Department of Occupational Therapy, Tel-Aviv University, The Adler Center for Research in Child Development and Psychopathology, Department of Psychology, Tel-Aviv University, and Psychobiology Research Unit, Department of Psychology, Tel-Aviv University, Israel, in 2008.


Then you will find scans of four pages from the book: “Reflexes, Learning and Behaviour, A Window into the Child’s Mind”, by Sally Goddard. This gives you a picture of the neurology of the developing brain, and the importance of movement for the integration of the primitive reflexes. One of these especially has a big influence on the emotional state of the child/adult, and this one is called the Moro reflex

And then there is another yummy recipe from Debbie ter Borg in our Kitchen Corner, and right at the end, the opportunity for you all to share your recipes with everyone. There is one here this time.


In our “What’s on” column you will find two courses advertised.

One is a new training for The Extra Lesson® Programme, which will start in July, so very soon.

The other is the training in the Clay Field Therapy®, which will start in January 2017.

Please look and see if it is something you might be interested in, or if you know of someone who might be. Feel free to pass this information on.



We would also like to invite you all to share your wisdom through this newsletter. If you have a book to recommend, and article or would like to share information with regards to therapeutic work, please feel free to send it to us.


Happy reading!



Anxiety seen through the lens of the senses.
In our last newsletter we looked at the 12 senses and how they give us the doorways through which we meet our own body, the surrounding world and the other people in that world.
I would like to bring these senses into connection with the theme of this newsletter, how can we understand anxiety through these doorways, and is there something that we can do to help children/adults who suffer from anxiety?
Our Self makes first a connection to our own body, from there to the three dimensional space around us, the world as it is made visible through our smell, taste, vision and warmth, and then to the other people in that world, what they say, how to understand their thoughts and get to know their Selves.


point periphery

This knowing of ourselves through the 4 body senses, gives us a reference point from which we can know the world and the other. This means that there needs to be a constant balance between the point (self) and the periphery (world and other). Our point gives us stability while we go out and explore the world. And from going out into the world, we come back to our Self, to our own point of reference. Like breathing in and breathing out in our physical breath, we also breathe out into the world and the other, and breathe in when we come back to our Selves.

We need to stay in touch with the point when breathing out into the periphery, and the other way around, not lose contact with the periphery when I breathe in, come back to the point.


To read the whole article, click here: Anxiety seen through the lens of the senses



Balance treatment ameliorates anxiety and increases self-esteem in children with comorbid anxiety and balance disorder.

Comorbidity between balance and anxiety disorders in adult population is a well-studied clinical entity. Children might be particularly prone to develop balance-anxiety comorbidity, but surprisingly they are practically neglected in this field of research.
The consequence is that children are treated for what seems to be the primary disorder without noticing possible effects on the otherP1020547

In Study 1, children with balance dysfunction were compared to normally balanced controls on anxiety and self-esteem.
In study 2, children with balance dysfunction were assigned to either balance training or a waiting-list control. Training consisted of 12 weekly sessions of balance treatment. Anxiety and self-esteem were
tested before and after treatment/waiting. Study 1 confirmed significantly higher anxiety and lower self-esteem in the balance dysfunction group compared to the control group. Study 2 showed that treatment improved balance performance, reduced anxiety, and increased self-esteem relative to the control waiting list group. Taken together, the present findings are in accord with the observations of comorbidity between balance and anxiety disorders in adults and confirm their validity in children younger than 7 years of age. This profile of comorbidity between balance dysfunction and anxiety also include lower self-esteem.
2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

To read the report on the study, please click here: balance and anxiety research


The Moro Reflex

When we are born, we are only very limited able to make directed and controlled free movements. A baby’s movements are mostly regulated by the Primitive Reflexes. These are automatic movement patterns, triggered often by the changing position of the head, bringing about a change in tension in the muscles in the body. These movement patterns form the basis for the development of the Central Nervous System, so that the different parts of our body, left and right side, arms and legs, neck and shoulder, tummy and back… all gain enough strength so that they one day can start to be controlled by our own intentions, and work together as an integrated whole.

One of these reflexes is called the Moro Reflex and is also knows as the Freeze, Flight and Fight Reflex. This is the automatic survival mechanism we need to alert us to and protect us from danger. We need it to take our first breath at birth, and so set in motion a whole process of maturation of all internal organs, with for the first time air entering the lungs.

If all goes well, this reflex integrates into the adult startle reflex at 2 to 4 months of life. If this fails, it could mean that the survival reflex can set the undertone of the emotional life of the child/adult. 

To read the four pages out of Sally Goddard’s book, “Reflexes, Learning and Behaviour, A Window into the Child’s Mind.” please click here: (I apologise in advance for the low quality of the text, my limited computer skills pop out every now and then.) 

the Moro Reflex 1

the Moro Reflex 2

the Moro Reflex 3

the Moro Reflex 4


How can therapies offered through the Aurora Collective help?

Reflexology is a holistic, non-invasive therapy, which complements other therapies as well as modern medicine. It’s based on the principle that all parts of the body are reflected on the feet, hands and ears.
A qualified Reflexologist will use a combination of gentle pressure and massage techniques on these reflex points in order to address imbalances in the body.
How can Reflexology help you?
Reflexology helps balance the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual levels of the body.
Stress/anxiety, toxins and illness create imbalances/congestion which inhibit the body’s flow and natural balance.
Reflexologists may detect these imbalances as they are reflected in the feet (or hands) and then use their hands to apply varying types of pressure to these reflexes (the pressure will be adapted for each person’s comfort). This helps the body to release tension and eliminate toxins.
For each person the application and the effect of the therapy delivered are unique.
Reflexology may help:
Balance the nervous system
Improve sleep quality
Boost lymphatic function
Assist in pain reduction
Enhance the body’s natural healing process
Affects all the body’s systems
Support the endocrine and immune systems
Aids healing following surgery
Relieve the side effects of chemotherapy

The Healing Touch
Giving a Reflexology treatment provides you with a special opportunity to cherish the people you care for. Touch is a unique form of communication and numerous studies have demonstrated its value. Helping to lower blood pressure and raise self-esteem; babies may gain weight and sleep better. Both physically and psychologically, touch comforts and reassures, and heals us.

Stress is a part of life for most people and sometimes it can be stimulating and enjoyable. However when stress levels rise too high and cannot be alleviated, problems set in.
Reflexology can dissipate the stress of everyday life in a healthy way by resolving or interrupting it, thus resetting the body’s stress mechanism.
Once this is achieved, reflexology then helps to make repairs and move the recipient towards a state of well-being. This process helped a client Tom who had a highly stressful job where he was required to be on call for 24 hours, seven days a week and finding it very difficult it to relax and sleep at night. He sought Reflexology treatments and found that it gave him respite from his high pressured job. Reflexology became a major part of his pursuit for well-being.
For more information read the book ‘complete reflexology for life’ by Barbara & Kevin Kunz.
This is men’s health week.
What about giving Reflexology a try?

Reflexologist/Nurse, Marcia Pollock, phone 0272469883, email


- The Extra Lesson® Programme:

The Extra Lesson® Programme stimulates the integration of the primitive reflexes, the child’s balance, spatial awareness and body geography. After an initial assessment, an individualised programme is made for each child, following the developmental path of early childhood. The experience of the point of reference in the body is strengthened this way, and so helping the child’s self esteem and, from there, the ability to go out and meet the world.

For more information, and contact details of the practitioners, please go to the Aurora website: 


- Sculpture Therapy:

Sculpture therapy works with touch, using the hands directly on the material to be transformed. It works on the sense of life, by slowing down the rhythm of breathing, and deepening it, so stimulating the organs below the diaphragm. Working with form, is working with movement and balance.

Sculpture therapy can bring us back to our point and strengthen it.

For more information and contact details go to: or


- Supportive Nursing Therapies:

Using touch and oils and substances on the skin, stimulates the sense of boundary, bringing us back to ourselves.

Using rhythmic movements when applying the oils to the skin, stimulates the rhythms of our body.

Using compresses on the skin, stimulating underlying organs, helps to enliven the function and rhythms of the organs.

For more information, and contact details of the practitioners, please go to the Aurora website: 


- Hakomi: Body Centered Mindfulness Counselling:

Bringing mindfulness to bodily sensations that go hand in hand with feelings of anxiety, and reducing these physical tensions, can support people with anxiety.

To find out more and make appointments, please contact Janet Thomson on 021 110 2340 or


“Kitchen Corner”

Picture of Autumn

As I stroll through my Belmont garden in the Autumn it is the seeds and the magical seed-forming processes that I notice first………Bean pods dry and rattling on the vines, some of the glossy purple and black seeds to be saved for next year’s planting and some to be added to hearty soups; hazel nuts to be gathered; seeds protected inside the denser, longer-keeping fruits that will continue to nourish us over the months to come…….pumpkins, late apples and pears; coriander seeds, spicy and warming; sunflower seeds, mostly eaten by the birds in the case of my garden but nonetheless a reminder that these little treasures, high in both proteins and good fats, can help sustain and energise our bodies through cooler times.

P1020566I also notice many different types of fungi popping up and am reminded that Autumn is the season for field mushrooms and other edible fungi. Some shun this family as a source of food, but for those of us who love mushrooms and are grateful for the nutrients they bring, Autumn feels like the perfect time to enjoy them! The pate recipe that follows is for the mushroom lovers!

In my garden the long-awaited rain has given encouragement to cooler weather greens, leeks and celery ……..and caused a positive explosion of parsley, chervil, rocket, mustard, landcress and other salad seedlings that bring spicier and more pungently concentrated tastes than the likes of summer lettuce, tastes that satisfy our digestive organs as the temperatures drop and the light lessens.

My Autumn garden picture is rounded out with sweet carrots, beets and parsnips, their colourful roots peeping out but mostly hidden under the ground and ……..lying on the ground but recently suspended above ……..fragrant feijoas!! Altogether a veritable feast indeed, offering seasonal nourishment for body, soul and all of our senses!

Blessings on your Autumn meals!
Mushroom and Walnut Cream Cheese Pate

- Fry finely diced mushrooms and finely chopped fresh sage in plenty of butter, then leave to cool

- Toast and finely chop a generous quantity of walnuts

- Using a wooden spoon gently combine mushroom mixture with walnuts and enough cream cheese to bind, seasoning with salt to taste and plenty of freshly ground black pepper

- Form pate into a shape of your choosing, then cover and refrigerate until firm enough to cut and serve with toast and Autumn salad greens.


Debbie ter Borg has studied nutrition, and has from a very young age, been interested in “nourishment” in the very widest sense of the word. She enjoys the magical “in depth” and “from scratch” kitchen and garden experiences, which she shares generously with others.

She has founded and worked for 5 years in ‘The Kitchen Club’ at Te Ra School, Raumati South, where she also taught the children in class 5. She has worked with young mothers and other people in many workshops on nutrition, and is a founding member of the Koha Café at Great Start, Taita, Lower Hutt, where she teaches cooking. If you want to get in touch with her with your questions on nutrition, you can email her on:


“Share your recipes”

With Debbie describing all the nuts that are plenty this time of the year, a friend gave me this recipe for a grain free nut and seed bread a little while ago. I am sure it would go very well with the pate in Debbie’s recipe:


- 50 gr melted butter or coconut oil

- 3/4 cup almond flour

- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds

- 2 Tbs chia seeds

- 2 Tbs sesame seeds

- 1/4 tsp sea salt

- 1/2 cup ground linseed

- 3 eggs

- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder

- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar

- extra seeds for topping


preheat oven to 180 C
Place pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds in a food processor and pulse until reasonably finely chopped, can be mixture of fine and chunky
In a bowl combine almond flour, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, chia seeds and linseed
add butter and eggs, whisk to form a thick batter
stir through baking powder and apple cider vinegar
spoon into small, lined loaf tin (about 18 by 10 cm) (I buttered the tin and sprinkled almond flour in it and it came out without problems)
bake for 50 mins until firm and golden, keeping an eye on it, it is a bit like baking a cake
remove form oven and leave to cool
wrap in baking paper and store in fridge
serve with soup of topping of your choice

“Do you have a recipe you want to share? let us know!”




What’s On?extra lesson logo


New Extra Lesson® Course starting in Auckland

11 – 15 July 2016

Do you work with children and adolescents with learning, and behavioural difficulties? This training course provides the skills and understanding to work from a holistic developmental perspective to assist children with learning difficulties, behavioural disorders, dyslexia, dyspraxia, ASD, ADHD and sensory processing challenges. Please click on the link for further information and for registration:

For the Extra Lesson training Brochure, click here: ExtraLesson-training brochure

** The attendance of the Introductory Workshop is a fundamental prerequisite to qualify for the full EL training, which commences in NZ in January 2017. The Introductory Workshop may run again in Wellington – in early October (2nd week of school holidays) dependent on enrollment applications.

Extra Lesson® Professional Development Opportunity:

For those who have already trained in Extra Lesson, the following medical lectures are being covered in the Introductory Workshop in July (11th- 14th). These lectures are able to be attended for professional development purposes. Dr William Crawford will be building a picture of human development, over 4 days:

Mon: 11.30am – 1.00pm;

Tues, Wed, Thurs: 9.15am – 11.00am

*Times might vary slightly due to lectures being part of a whole training course.

- The Picture of the Whole Human Being (Embodiment)

- Child development and the Importance of Play

- The Incarnation Process – Spatial Awareness and Body Geography

- The Seven Life Processes

- The Importance of the Gut

- Supporting the Etheric Body

If you are a trained Extra Lesson Practitioner or a trainee, and would like to attend these lectures, please contact Lindy Peters for further information (cost/registration) at or phone 027 631 9855.


We are very excited to let you all know that a new form of therapy will be introduced to New Zealand in the beginning of next year!



In January 2017 Cornelia Elbrecht will be coming to Taruna, New Zealand to bring the introduction training of the Clay Field Therapy®.
“The Clay Field is a flat rectangular wooden box that holds 10 – 15 kg of clay. A bowl of water is supplied. This simple setting offers a symbolic “world” for the hands to explore. There will be no artwork to be taken home. The hands enter the Clay Field and move in it; in their ability or inability to “handle” the material they tell the client’s life story. The hands then can be encouraged to find ways to deal with situations and events, to complete actions that previously could not be coped with.
This unique art therapy approach is recognized in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and France as a discipline in its own right. Over 500 Clay Field Therapists are currently practicing in numerous institutions. It is part of the curriculum in schools for disabled and disadvantaged children; it is widely used in women’s shelters, refugee centres and to facilitate trauma healing. It is a registered trademark. Only authorized therapists are eligible to practice and teach this method.”
For all the information, the course outline and registration form for the introduction week, please click here: TrainingNZIntro17

For all the information, the course outline and registration form for the certificate training, please slick hereTrainingClayNZ2017


The training will be held at Taruna College:

Taruna CollegeTaruna

The home of holistic adult education, Taruna offers both professional and personal development opportunities across Waldorf education, organic and biodynamic farming, holistic health and art, as well as various short courses.
Taruna also offers hostel accommodation on site. All are single rooms with shared kitchen, dining, lounge, laundry and bathrooms. The rooms are also already made up with bed linen. For all enquiries please contact the Taruna office.
Located on the slopes of Te Mata Peak in Hawkes Bay, it is a short 5min drive to the top of the peak lookout where you can see right across Havelock North, Hastings and over to Napier. It is a 5min drive/ 10min bike/ 20min walk to the Havelock North Village where there are a number of cafes, restaurants, retail stores, banks, and a supermarket. It is a short 10min drive to Hastings, 15mins to Haumoana beach, and a stone’s throw from many of Hawkes Bay’s best wineries.        


ASK Trust (a charitable trust for and by ASD adults) has a large library of ASD books (over 500 titles), which can be borrowed by post (or in person by special arrangement, as they’re based on Kapiti Coast). The catalogue can be viewed on their website , and items borrowed by emailing your request to The current cost to borrow is $5 per book, or $30 annually for unlimited number of books (max. two at a time) – plus postage if applicable.













If you want to get in touch with any of the Aurora Therapists, please visit our website: You will find all contact details, descriptions of the different therapies and biographies of the therapists there. You can also contact us there via the ‘contact us’ page.

For questions and suggestions for contributions to the upcoming newsletters, you can also email Lut Hermans on



If you want to subscribe to this newsletter, or you no longer wish to receive it, please send a little message to:

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone you think might be interested.



Our next newsletter will come out sometime in November. If you have contributions, questions or a theme you would like to explore or suggest, please let us know by the beginning of October 2016, so that we can include it.