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The Trusting Heart

Addiction, Recovery, and Intergenerational Trauma

Michael Aanavi

Aanavi's story takes us into the belly of the beast in an exploration of the soul's wounding and stands eye-to-eye with the demons in an honest attempt to make a different relationship with these entities. Aanavi hones in on the entity of heroin, which is the one spirit visitor that has given him the gift of insight during this lifetime.

Carl Jung spoke of pistis, the trusting heart. He said that this fundamental capacity for trust is the precursor to faith, and that without this essential quality, faith in something greater—faith in one’s own process, faith in the wholeness of the psyche—is impossible. For the author of this book, pistis involves the ability to trust one's own subjectivity, one's felt sense, regardless of whether it jibes with what is externally acceptable or valid, regardless of the outcome.

In The Trusting Heart, Dr. Aanavi writes about his experience over the past twenty-plus years, both as a person in recovery and as a clinician. The book is about his exploration, his process, and his commitment to both the profoundly personal and the remarkably vast. It is about telling the stories of one’s experience and committing to the integrity of one’s felt truth and to following one’s energetic thread wherever it might lead.

200 pp.  

Chiron Publications


Published:  October 2012


Dr. Michael Aanavi is a clinical psychologist, licensed acupuncturist, and recovering heroin addict. He entered the Phoenix House Foundation in New York City in 1988 and, after completing residential treatment, went on to earn a PhD in clinical/multicultural and community psychology, as well as an MS in traditional Chinese medicine. He has worked in a variety of capacities in addiction treatment, psychiatric, and medical settings, and is a former faculty member at UCSF School of Medicine. In his life and clinical work, he incorporates acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, dreamwork, somatics, qigong, and mindfulness practice. In addition to his private practice, Dr. Aanavi serves on the Board of Directors of Family Service Agency of San Francisco. When not working, Dr. Aanavi enjoys open spaces, cooking for family and friends, and taking time to be neither productive nor goal-oriented. See all books by Michael Aanavi

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