Avatars, Voices and Jesus.

Avatars, Voices and Jesus.

Last week on NPR I heard a fascinating interview with a psychiatrist who uses avatar therapy to quiet the negative voices in people’s minds and free them from the burdens imposed by fear, doubt, anxiety, insecurity (etc.). I’ve since read that this sort of therapy is even used to treat clinical schizophrenia. Fascinating, isn’t it?

Talk about theater of the mind!!

Apparently this avatar therapy challenges the patient to describe in physical detail the way this personified voice looks, sounds, and behaves. The doctor creates a digitally embodied replica of the voice, and  “brings the voice to life,” and he himself plays the role of the voice. He also plays the role of psychiatrist, so he’s got a big job. Anyway, the patient directly addresses a physical representation of the unhealthy voice inside her mind, and through this process she can challenge and conquer the demon. Problem solved — after three years of therapy sessions at $100/hour. Let’s see: once a week for three years, um, would add up to a new house.

C.S. Lewis created a work of art similar to this – though his book was set in an era when our imaginations didn’t know the language of avatars and digitized voices. In Screwtape Letters, Lewis puts a voice and behavior to the most powerful demon of all, and we hear his schemes to mess with our lives through voices in our heads and leveraging our most crippling insecurities. Now that’s fascinating.

I believe in the power of conquering voices in our heads because I have personally had to overcome several. And because of my success, I know that there is a power beyond our wildest imagination. We each have the potential to have the power right within ourselves, to transform us physically, emotionally, spiritually and permanently. It’s not magic and it’s not human, but it is simple. Calling on God’s Holy Spirit to come in to our hearts and change us; silence the voices and conquer the demons, is a fail-safe way to start.

We probably have to do it every day, or multiple times a day, but it works. And it doesn’t cost $100 an hour. The only cost is an honest willingness to let Him in and then let Him fight the battles with weapons of strength and love. The best part is, we can literally see and feel the victories.

As theater goes, it’s the most fascinating plot line out there.



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