How Does Causal Release System Training (CRST) Work?

Suffering, pain and fear can be caused by the memories of past unpleasant experiences that are being triggered by present events. This happens because the mind stores the ways we react to threat and injury in deep memory so that, if anything similar happens again, we can respond quickly and without thought to the new threat facing us. If the original event is in the distant past, the conscious mind sometimes cannot remember the original event, the circumstances or how it reacted to the threat or injury. It responds automatically at a level that is beneath the conscious mind, what we call the subconscious mind. If we are out in the desert walking and we hear a rattle, we automatically stop, freeze and look for the rattler. If we have been scared or bitten by rattler before, we might take off running. Both these are survival responses we don't have to think about. The problem arises when you are in a zoo, and take off running. You never get the time to realize that the rattler cannot harm you because it is in a cage. Causal Release System Training (CRST) was created to help persons access these old memories that are still active and erase or remove them. Once they are removed, then we can choose to respond to events in the present without being triggered into acting out old ways of reacting to threat and injury.

Finding a way to learn about what is happening at the subconscious level is the first thing we must do in order to facilitate CRST. We use the word facilitate, because the work happens entirely in the mind of the person who has the problem: the helper or facilitator simply guides the person to do it themselves. There are several ways of getting to the subconscious level of mind: through relaxation, as when we are just entering or leaving our sleep, through meditation, through guided imagery, through hypnosis and through entrainment. Let us take a look at these various ways of getting to the subconscious, what psychologists call altering our consciousness.

The Hypnogogic State

Often as we are going to sleep or waking up, we find ourselves in a peaceful, relaxed state of mind, that is different from our waking consciousness. Psychologists call this the hypnogogic state, where we are in a state halfway between being awake and being asleep. During this time, the subconscious often speaks to us: reminding us of things to be done, solving any problem that we were thinking about when we went to sleep, etc.


Meditation is the conscious act of sitting or walking quietly, just listening to the sounds of our inner self. Not trying to make anything happen, but just listening. We learn to do this by various methods. One of the most common ways to learn meditation is by repeating a simple phrase (in Sanskrit, this is called a mantra), perhaps your preferred name for God or "let it go". This repetition gives the conscious mind a task and the subconscious mind can then communicate. Perhaps the easiest way to learn to meditate is to meditate with someone that has meditated before and can enter into that altered state of consciousness easily and quickly. Actually meditation isn't doing anything as much as it is the act of not doing.

Guided Imagery

We can ask persons to imagine in their mind's eye stories, or situations. The act of imagining these stories or guided imagery leads the mind to alter its usual state of consciousness, and pay attention to the inner pictures being formed in the mind.


Hypnosis is an often misunderstood word. It often makes us think of the stage hypnotist that seems to be controlling the individual without them desiring or willing that control. It seems scary and somehow intrusive. It has often been abused and persons experimenting with it have had some scary experiences. But actually hypnosis, when used correctly, is the simple act of turning inward and willing ourselves to concentrate on something very hard and make suggestions to ourselves that we do certain things that need to be done. Through hypnosis you can ask the person to concentrate on getting to their subconscious mind and they will do just that.


The last of these, entrainment, means that the brain's frequency responses, as measured on a brain wave machine, will follow or mimic any rhythmic sound, light or magnetic field.

CRST uses all of these ways of changing the states of consciousness in various combinations. Altering our consciousness is the key to getting our hands on the keyboard of the computer or mind.

In CRST we tap with our finger on the thymus of the person about 2 to 4 times a second in order to have the brain follow that tapping. The brain waves (from about 4 to 30 cycles per second) will follow any rthymic movement perceived either as sound, vision, or electro-magnetic impulse. The normal waking state is around 20 to 30 cycles per second. As we alter our consciousness, this activity gradually slows down to under 10 cycles per second. It is a rather simple change. In essence we shift our focus from outside of ourselves to inside of ourselves. When focused inward there is much less external information being processed by the brain at that time.

When we have slowed the brain down, we ask the person to have the subconscious mind come up to the conscious level so that we can talk to the subconscious. Once we have a connection with the subconscious we can then ask the subconscious to find and relive in the mind's eye the memories about the issues that are most important. Dragging up the past is unimportant in and of itself, and it would not be recommended if we did not know that there were old, automatic, knee- jerk patterns that were still being activated in the present. Once we establish a conversation with the subconscious, we ask the subconscious to go look for the earliest memory of that painful, frightening or hurtful feeling and relive that experience for us in the mind's eye.

Once we can get to and find the subconscious memories of old responses to threat and injury, we then look for the first time the consciousness stored the response to the old threat or injury. In order to find the first time we may have to work back through more recent responses to similar threats or injuries stored in the same location. How do we find these memories? We ask the subconscious mind to find the experience that is the source of the present issues that are indentified as causing pain and suffering in the present. When that memory is found, we ask the subconscious to also remember the emotional content and circumstances of that memory. As the person remembers both the circumstances and emotions of the memory, we then break up the emotional patterns around that situation.

How do we do that? First of all let us explain about a part of the human anatomy that doesn't get talked about a lot in the our anatomy classes, although these parts of the human anatomy have been understood and recognized for thousands of years and many persons have written about them. Aside from the systems of nerves, glands, muscles, circulation, digestion, etc., there is a subtle energy system. The Chinese call this the accupuncture system and the East Indians call this the Nadi system. This system is interrelated to the more well known systems. Within the subtle energy system are energy centers that we all recognize in our common language. When we feel pain, we put our hand on our hearts. Is our heart actually hurting, or is the center? We feel choked up when we can't express our emotions. There is an energy center at the throat. Are we actually choking or are we feeling the energy center? These energy centers, as we know from our experiences with them, are located at the places in the body that we feel emotions.

These emotional centers can be influenced by other energy patterns. When we are experiencing emotions we can break up those emotional patterns in several ways. We can introduce new energy by sound, impact on the body, or by focusing mental energy on the center with the intent of breaking up the pattern. We can remember the times that a loud noise or sudden change in the weather made us stop worrying or feeling bad. We all instinctively want to slap someone when they are having a temper tantrum or seem to be acting irrationally. The priest, minister or rabbi prays over us when we are distraught, offering us soothing words and mental intent to be calm. In CRST we break up emotional patterns through mental intent, at first by having someone else provide the energy and later, we learn to do it ourselves.

The type of energy we use to affect this system is the same stuff that makes up all of life. It is called by the Chinese chi, by the Japanese ki, and by the Indians, prana, by the Hawaiians, mana. Since the west does not have a recognized spiritual vocabulary, we call it bioenergy or the Christians might call it the holy spirit. The energy is generated by the facilitator through focusing their attention and intent on breaking up the emotional pattern. Once emotional patterns are broken up, we then ask the subconscious whether any judgments were made about those experiences, and if so, we ask the person to verbally release those judgments and forgive anyone whom they still may be angry or seeking revenge. To break up these patterns of judgments, anger and revenge we also use the technique of focused intent.

Once the judgments or vows or released, then the person needs to forgive anyone that harmed them and forgive themselves for any sense of responsibility for the event. This is also done verbally and cleared with focused intent.

Usually after releasing the emotions, judgments, anger and revenge desires, there are questions about why the events occured and what they meant. The person is then guided to ask their superconscious, the guiding aspect of our consciousness, to answer these questions internally. Having received satisfactory answers to the questions posed, the person is then asked whether s/he wishes to make a new choice about their responses to situation like these in the future. That new choice is then reinforced with focused intent and the person is asked whether they are totally and completely clear of this old pattern.

The basic techniques are very simple and can be learned easily in a weekend. Once you have some experience working with others you can then apply the technique to yourself. It is most useful in the moment: if you get mad or frightened, you can clear that pattern before it gets lost in the subconscious, and forgive anyone who frightened or injured you, and forgive yourself. It is now no longer stored in the subconscious and you will no longer automatically respond to a similar situation occuring in the present.

You might be wondering that if it is so simple, why isn't every body doing it? The problem is that to be sucessful, the person must be willing to do it. We naturally avoid painful memories and this process does bring up painful memories. The experiences are no way as painful as the original experience because we are breaking up the emotional energy as it comes up, but nevertheless they are not pleasurable. It is a little bit like castor oil. Although it may be good for us, it does not taste good. Another thing is that these unconscious memories often contain the reasons we are doing the particular things in our life. For instance, we may be working at a job because our parents always wanted us to be a professional, or a doctor, or work in the family business even though that is not what we want to do in life. Or we might have married someone because of pregnancy and are afraind to try a single life on our own. If we clear the fear that made us make the choice in the beginning, we would then be faced with the fear of changing. Often the fear piles up, fear upon fear, and until we get started, the whole thing seems too overwhelming to begin.

The nice thing is once we have faced and cleared our fears, they can't even be remembered. They seem about as important as last month's cleaning list, information that we could look up, but have no reason to do so.

There are many levels of CRST just as there are many different aspects to life. You choose just how far you wish to go with the process. Each level has something new to teach and more advanced understanding of that new level is necessary. As you work with others and with yourself, experience will lead you to new understandings and questions. CRST is designed to give you necessary experiences and answers at certain critical levels of development.

For More Information Please Read What is Causal Release System Training?.

Written by James M. Price, MSW, MPA


One Response to “How Does Causal Release System Training (CRST) Work?”

  1. What is Causal Release System Training (CRST)? | Healing Base on December 22nd, 2011 11:17

    […] More Information Please Read How Does Causal Release System Training Work?Related content: Home is Where the Healing […]

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