chapter  9
BRADFORD KEENEY: A Family of Pirates
Pages 13

It was a time of transition in Brad Keeney’s life. He was feeling frustrated with the limitations of psychotherapy, especially when compared with the work of shamans in various cultures. Whereas therapy is primarily a “talking cure,” a treatment in which people talk to an expert about their problems, indigenous healers avoid such talk in favor of more active methods that involve dancing, singing, shaking, rituals, and prescriptive ordeals. All of this takes place within the community, in a very public setting, rather than in the private sanctum of a mental health professional. Moreover, Keeney felt an aversion to the usual methods of diagnosis and psychological labeling that take place within the therapeutic community.