What is Organic Intelligence?
Organic Intelligence® (OI) is a unique theory and clinical practice of human empowerment, resiliency, and compassion to resolve the devastating effects of stress, trauma, and PTSD.
The Organic Intelligence (OI) clinical protocol suggests that, from a systems perspective, what’s wrong with therapy is the focus on what’s wrong — including the focus on trauma.
Organic Intelligence brings a necessary shift in perspective from pathology and trauma to the proven methods drawn from the wisdom of mindfulness and the science of self-organization. OI teaches how healing happens from the nervous system up and makes it possible to imagine freedom from suffering. Freedom from suffering becomes freedom for living an authentic, vibrant life in the here-and-now.
OI teaches therapists how to observe relevant client behaviors according to a very clear map. This mapping allows therapists to understand the nervous system state, and reveals what kind of intervention is most likely to support natural systemic reorganization.
Rather than providing insight per se, Organic Intelligence aims to shepherd observable physio-emotional states according to a protocol which aligns with subtle, but naturally occurring organismic trends toward increased coherence — the rhythm of an integrative biology. We employ a ‘shaping’ paradigm of positive reinforcement — a true paradigm shift in trauma therapy.
Organic Intelligence was developed by Steve Hoskinson, MA, MAT, who has trained thousands of practitioners and mentored trauma resolution instructors in North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.
For a good example of Organic Intelligence, watch the Jada Video of Steve working with 3-year old Jada, the morning after choking and a subsequent traumatic hospital event. Bookmark the OI Blog to read Steve’s regular updates and discussion of the latest developments in Organic Intelligence.
A Compassion Enterprise
Organic Intelligence is a Compassion Enterprise. It is both a teaching and a practice whose aim is to provide access to powerful tools for directly and potently engaging with the needs of all living beings. Tools that establish compassion, reduce stress, and resolve trauma. To promote broad access to these tools, this enterprise dedicates a percentage of its profits to providing scholarships to the OI Human Empowerment And Resiliency Training (HEARTraining®) and to supporting pro bono OI Community Projects worldwide.
Professional Training Program
The OI professional training program provides a trajectory of developmental progression through a number of training levels.* The more advanced courses are geared towards working with larger systems such as groups, companies, and governments, and ultimately lead to learning how to teach Organic Intelligence in various environments. See OI Membership Levels for an infographic on the available training trajectory.
The 3-year HEARTraining is our premium, leading edge training experience of overall personal and professional development. This training is a continuing education certificate program open to mental health and other helping professionals seeking effective skills in trauma resolution, resiliency, and stress-management and to anyone seeking professional development and personal growth. Prerequisites include the desire to grow and a call to mindful service.
The OI Expert (OIX) Membership provides intensive post-advanced coursework and competency training, including the essential understanding of the fractal nature of body and mind and how to incorporate this understanding into your life and work with others. OIX is a continuing education certificate program developed specifically to help integrate complex, advanced somatic skills and bring the refinements necessary to work with the most challenging clients safely and with confidence. OIX is open to all HEARTraining, Hakomi, Sensorimotor, and Somatic Experience® graduates.
For an affordable, basic clinical overview of OI, try OI Basics Membership. OI Basics is a great place to start exploring the wisdom of Organic Intelligence.
* Organic Intelligence is neither a regulatory nor licensing organization and therefore not sanctioned to certify, license, or otherwise bestow the legal authorization to practice as a mental health professional.
Organic Intelligence began with the question of human nature. At the heart of our human nature is an extraordinary courage, the irrepressible impulse for exploration, and our almost miraculous social inclinations. These show up as generosity, self-sacrifice, and bonding with the various species living in our homes and in our hearts. It is no secret that the secret to human nature is love…
Steve Hoskinson on Trauma
“As a trauma therapist and trainer I learned that our nature can become quite distorted. Humans are capable of unspeakable cruelty and mass destruction. Most of my professional life I have worked with survivors of torment and trauma and have trained the therapists who work with them. Even though our psyches may become twisted, I discovered that our essential nature continues to be stronger than the forces that seem to conspire to contort us. Our essence wisely waits, like a seed, until the right conditions appear. OI provides the right conditions.”
Science and Wisdom
Organic Intelligence is built on the sciences of psychology, complex systems, anthropology, and biology as well as the innate wisdom of mystery schools and ancient wisdom traditions. OI integrates the wisdom of our inner nature — biological, psychological, and spiritual — with the modern understanding of synchronous systems.
The new Science of Complex Systems is providing radical new ways of understanding the physical, biological, ecological, and social universe. With Organic Intelligence, complex systems theory is applied to personal growth and healing.
As human beings, we are complex ecosystems: brain systems, tissue systems, organ systems, neural networks — biospheres that can hum and dance together, meant for harmonious interconnections. A human being can be a symphony of systems, or it can be out of tune and out of synch.
Everything in the universe has a rhythm, everything dances. Maya Angelou
As Steve often says, we are the “singing and dancing species,” not only because of our traditional ways, but also because we can sing and dance within ourselves. Our cells are inherently connected to the cycles of the sun and moon, day and night, waking and sleeping — biorhythms, circadian rhythms. These systems or rhythms can become de-synched, and then we suffer. We try to manage uncomfortable symptoms by altering our rhythms chemically, or by other forms of compulsive “doing,” and we miss the subtle wisdom of our inner nature that offers a map for returning to the synchrony of wellbeing.
Using the Wisdom of our Inner Nature
Organic Intelligence provides the way to understand and address the de-synching of our biological systems. It utilizes what is already there: the quiet wisdom of our inner nature. Our bodies, as complex systems, and our souls provide exactly what is needed. Organic Intelligence trains therapists to recognize when a system is out of tune and out of synch. Most importantly, we train healers to both recognize when a system is trying to re-synchronize and how to encourage the return to harmony. Systems, with the right support, will synchronize in harmony. This is where real healing happens.
Rather than “techniques,” Organic Intelligence provides the understanding for accurately employing specific interventions that match an individual’s phase and allows what’s next to unfold organically. These interventions are effective because of what they are, but especially, they are effective because of when they are applied. To learn to waltz, we start with a set of three steps in a specific sequence; to dance the waltz is to apply those steps in time with the music, respecting its rhythm and feeling. Keen observation, attunement, a hopeful nature, sensitivity to timing, compassion, and love are the qualities which emerge in us as human beings and as successful OI therapists.
Self Development Through Selfless Service
Organic Intelligence is both a professional and a life direction. Ultimately, OI catalyzes our capacity to experience relief from endless striving by recalibrating the nervous system. A recalibrated nervous system opens the way to experience harmony in life, to relate, and to love again freely. Organic Intelligence offers the possibility of finding ourselves in compassionate and sustainable action, arising spontaneously to meet each moment. This means ease and heartfelt engagement on behalf of society, something previously found almost exclusively after years of contemplative practice. The Sanskrit term Nishkam Karma describes this ease and engagement as, “Taking responsible action without attachment to the outcome.”
Organic Intelligence encourages, creates, and engages in the interconnected communities — within us and between us — that are embodying compassion with heart-full living.