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Entries in Trent Banyan (1)

Thursday
Jul182019

Interview with Trent Banyan

While recently attending an Esoteric Accupuncture event facilitated by Alison Clarke-Daly, I had the pleasure of meeting Trent Banyan.  Feeling his uplifting vibes and hearing about the range of natural therapies he offers, including a unique approach to rehabilitation, prompts me to interview him.  Thanks Trent for sharing these insights.

Thanks for the opportunity! As we say, "peace and chi!"

Who is Trent Banyan? What led you to where you are today?

There have been many key life experiences that have supported my growth, but the one that stands was in 2010. I was in a month-long meditation centre in Guatemala. I would meditate daily, perform yoga and learn esoteric studies. Daily, I touched the surface of spiritual practices of numerology, lucid dreaming and astral travelling, the hindu chakra system, sacred geometry and the Kabbalah. It was actually here that I found my calling to be a healer and later, to find this place planted the seed that started my yoga journey.

What you highlight is a concentrated experience of life-changing spiritual awakening. We often hear of people learning one modality and later complementing it with others. It really strikes me as exciting that you invited it all in as you did and continue to do.

Please identify 2 key experiences that shifted your life focus. 

Since graduating from university, I have been working primarily in a private rehabilitation setting. To support people struggling with mental health and addiction concerns, I offer acupuncture, yoga therapy and mindfulness trails. This experience has brought to light how supportive I can be in a number of ways.

Using natural therapies as part of an approach to rehab feels very valuable. Kudos for taking the intiative.  A former yoga teacher of mine became a yoga instructor in an Australian women's prison.  Her very presence and this peaceful practice completely shifted the energy and morale of participants.  You demonstrate we each have the power to share our gifts in ways that invite others to see and experience the world differently.

The second experience that shifted my focus was having a child. Easily the birth of my daughter is the closest I thing I have felt to source. The whole room when she came into this world was a divine portal. Being a father shifted my focus to stepping up as a provider, protector and to be the best partner and father to my wife and child. It put everything in perspective and my family its strength is one of my main focuses in my life.

Can definitely relate to how parenthood changes lives. I had my children later in life when we were ready for each other. Being around children blesses us in so many ways.  Theya re teachers in their own right for all those who are willing to be open to this.  

What would you describe was your Dark night of the Soul?

Short version would have been my experience meeting Ayuahuscua.  This was my dark night of the soul. I felt there was no return back to what I felt was normal. Throughout the experience I was fighting it and trying to break my way through the discomfort and ability to be in control. I was spiralling deeper into darkness and I sat with fear. Fear I would not be able to come out of it and won’t be able to see my daughter again. At times I was having full dissociation of my body and space I was in. The medicine was strong and I was burning up. I stripped fully naked and had continual feelings of paranoia. I remember even saying goodbye to my wife and daughter. The hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. The support of a dear brother’s words of ‘sovereignty’ and ‘surrender’ came through. These words acted as a mantra and supported the ability to fully surrender. I broke through not by fighting but by surrendering and feeling sovereign in my being. I felt invincible and that I could create anything I put my attention to. It was a long night where I went into the abyss and came out the other side with a death of a part of my ego and a new sense of awareness that will live on inside of me.

The intimacy of this sharing is very touching.  You may be familliar with ethnobotanist Terence McKenna.  He blatently says that "Ayahuasca loves to take prideful people and rub their nose in it. I mean it can make you beg for mercy like nothing..."  He reminds us "to approach it humbly," as it sounds like you did th best you could. 

 Share some of your most difficult choices. Any resulting shifts in priorities?

The most difficult choice was to opt to not stay in construction and take up an opportunity that was financially-driven. It was at that point I reflected if this was the path I wanted to pursue and see myself in a career for the rest of my life doing. I saw clairvoyants, palm readers and sat in meditation with this decision. Finally, I came to the conclusion I was to take a redundancy instead and travel around the world for the year. A few weeks in I found the meditation centre in Guatemala and my life’s trajectory was then completely changed for ever.

Wow! From rugged construction worker to trusting clairvoyants and your true self. Love the message that what suits us in one moment can alienate us in another. When willing to listen to the heart, big shifts tend to happen.

Share your greatest joy(s). In which ways do they take shape in your life?

My greatest joy is going on adventures and spending quality time with my wife and daughter. We have a day each week called adventure day and we get out of the house, into nature and explore.

Making the most of every moment with those we care about is an endearing message. 

Tell us, what is High on Chi? Why this 'umbrella phrase' of your endeavours?

High on Chi was created for people to learn to get in touch with the infinite potential and power of chi (energy), that they have available to them. Many people are chi deficient and this is caused through living a lifestyle out of balance and that is too yang in nature. High on Chi uses the 8 Pillars of Chi Flow as a blueprint to identify areas of one’s life where they are wasting/leaking their chi and how they can improve it. When you are high on chi you are in the flow of life, you feel incredible and your beliefs, perceptions and mental state feels more balanced. The yin and the yang of the body is in more balanced and you feel like you are able to achieve what you desire. It’s the highest of highs and the purest.

And how does this relate to emotions?

There is no side effects or emotions such as shame or guilt. You are simply tapping into ancient traditions of living to promote good health and longevity. There are a growing number of people relying on drugs and extrinsic rewards to feel good and receive a short-lived high. Rather than using chi practices and cultivation techniques such as breath, diet, exercise, chi cycle living, connection to nature, meditation, sleep hygiene, acupuncture and having a sense of purpose and meaning.  All these pillars when improved upon will cultivate and dramatically improve one’s chi levels. Thus, supporting a life that is full of abundance, balance and a feeling of being high on life.

Many people reach for abundance, balance and natural highs.  Sounds like you respond to the call.  What led to working with rehab clients? 

I was fortunate that a student in my yoga class was working for Noosa Confidential a leading private rehabilitation centre and informed me that there was a conflict of interest as the regular acupuncturist knew a client personally who was coming into the program. I went and did a few acupuncture and yoga therapy sessions and before not to long 75% of my business was working for Noosa Confidential contracting. Its been nearly 4 years since and I have provided support for 100s of people struggling with mental health, addiction and other concerns.

What do you love most? What do they teach you?

What I love most is observing the change in someone who has hit rock bottom or even on the brink of suicide and then to witness the journey and growth. They inspire me and also remind me of my own journey and how far I have come. I also become reminded from time to time of my core values and principles by which I live. One lesion I am constantly reminded of is how many clients I see have an abundance of money and material things and yet suffering from depression for example. A reminder of the old age saying money doesn’t buy happiness. I still feel I learn just as much from my clients as they do me. Sometimes I get triggered and it’s an opportunity to observe what that is, so I can do some work on myself that’s perhaps unresolved. 

How did you develop and integrate such a diverse skillset in this rehab setting? 

It was working in a rehabilitation centre that acknowledged my versatility and allowed me to provide a range of services to their clients. From yoga therapy private sessions, acupuncture and mindfulness trails, I was able to see a wide range of clients with various concerns and build my experience.

Now, that is trust in action! You know the saying, the more we trust the universe, the more the universe gives us new reasons to trust...

Who inspires you as your mentors? What wisdom do they impart that you take to heart?

My mentors are my wife and my close brothers that are in my life. I have been with my wife for nearly 16 years and we got together while I was a heavy pot smoker and drug taker and with a lack of purpose. She has been such a solid support for my continual growth and I owe her lots of credit to helping me become the man I am today.

Not everyone has the courage and strength to support a partner through addiction.  We hear about celebrities like Nicole Kidman who supported Keith Urban during rehab but we never really know the extent of Keith Urban's addiction. Regardless of the news, the support of those closest to us as we go through hardship matters.  Love of others helps to heal us but ultimately loving ourselves is the key to everything.

I have a group of men I regularly meet up with and we meet for sunrise, climb a mountain, connect over a brew and have good yarns. These men are an incredible source of inspiration for me. We help keep each other accountable and there is a huge amount of trust between us. They are all innovators and system changers doing incredible things out there to help all of humanity.

Bonding is so powerful for men and women.  We hear about men;s Circles and Sisters Circles like that run by Julie Cardillo that create a supportive healing space for growth.

Describe your 5 core values and how your bigger life vision is evolving to nurture this.

My 5 core values are ;

1.            I value being a respected trustworthy man in my community

2.            I value being the best father I can possibly be for my daughter

3.            I value having a well-balanced lifestyle between self-care, family, fun, friends and work

4.            I value travelling and exploring different places and cultures

5.            I value time spent in nature and sitting around a fire with close friends and family

I value these core values as well as many other I have so much that when I don’t give one attention for a while, I can feel my yin/yang harmony out of balance. Touching on all these values regularly maintains my self-worth and belief I have as well as stay connected to have a sense of purpose and meaning in my life.

That definitely invites us all to reflect on our own values and whether we are consistently living or truth, walking our talk, being in harmony with thought, word and action which Gandhi describes as the key to happiness.

If you could leave some advice for people, what would it be?

Go and challenge yourself. Ask for help and support when you need it and take full responsibility for your life. Be the master of your own destiny, don’t wait or rely on others.

Taking full responsibility for our live choices and consequences is indeed life changing. 

How can people contact you? Upcoming events? How can people work with you?

w. www.highonchi.com.au

e. trent@highonchi.com.au

p. 0429044187

Facebook: HIGH ON CHI -  https://www.facebook.com/highonchi.com.au/?ref=bookmarks

I have my own clinic called High on Chi in Noosaville on the Sunshine Coast and available for 1 on 1 sessions on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

I have a bunch of events and workshops coming up. I will be back in Bali next month, this time to facilitate 3 events at The Pyramids of Chi in Ubud where I will also be providing some 1 on 1 private sessions in the Pyramids.

Monthly there is the Community Acupuncture and Sound Bath events held on the Sunshine Coast and in Brisbane monthly. For more info and book, see website or contact me directly.

Thanks again Trent for being so open.  Imagine what life would be like when people feel more open to choose to live based on love rather than be driven by fear. We are shifting in that direction.  Our own lives are our message.