When presented with a book to review that carries the title ‘ Emotional Detox’, I think we could all be excused for thinking that this was going to be yet another ‘self-help’ guide full of positive thinking techniques and ways to turn your negative emotions into bright, fluffy, happy ones. Yes, you know the sort of self help guides, the ones that demand you dedicate the next 21 days of your life to ‘finding yourself’. Thankfully, ‘Emotional Detox through bodywork’, by Mal Weeraratne offers a very different approach to clearing away negative emotions.


The author introduces his book by saying, ‘Everyone experiences some form of trauma at some stage in their life. For many people the impact of trauma has long lasting effects.’ Well this is a concept that I would hold with. ’ He goes on to explain that the negativity of this past trauma stays with us and ‘resonate[s] strongly into our expressions, feelings, thoughts, actions, responses and the decisions we make’.


Mal says that the purpose of his work, and indeed his book is ‘to help individuals get past a state of survival and live a life of celebration again’. He goes on to talk about his work and philosophies which centre on a unique treatment that he has developed over the past twenty years, which combines, Tantra, Tao and Bodywork. He explains that his work serves as a catalyst for, the release of both emotional and physical toxins from the body; enhancement of love intimacy and sexuality, improving relationships, healing the mind, body and spirit.


When you flick through the book and see chapters entitled ‘orgasm vs ejaculation’ and ‘Healthy Orgasm’, I will admit that I raised an eyebrow and couldn’t helping wondering if I was about to read a self help guide to Sting’s version of Tantra, but thankfully the author explains that the four key stages of his treatment method are:


  1. Bodywork to evoke emotions and relax the body
  2. Deep breathing exercises to release evoked negative emotions
  3. Sounds to disperse emotions through expression
  4. Body movements to disperse stagnant negative emotions


Now this all sound much more ‘ladies who do yoga’ than anything else and so on a stay indoors and read afternoon when the weather was decidedly wet and windy, I snuggled up with a copy of Mal’s book and had a jolly good read. His chapter on ‘emotions rooted in the body’ was fascinating, he cites the work of Dr. Candace Pert and her book ‘Molecules of Emotions’and draws his own conclusions on how negative emotions are held in the body and not in the mind. There is also a very good chapter on physical detoxing and maintaining an alkaline diet, the chart on alkaline foods I felt was particularly helpful.

Indeed there are some challenging ideas in the book and the section on yoni massage (vaginal massage) is not for the closed minded and indeed when the author describes the four areas of the yoni that are ‘reservoirs that hold emotion’, it is a challenge  to our Western views and practices. However, this book presents some interesting ideas and serves as an introduction to understanding Tantra, Tao and indeed the authors own work. It’s not a book exclusively on Tantra,  nor is it a sex guide or anything of the sort, but what it is, is a quirky book that presents details on how negative emotions are held in the body and can be cleared through bodywork and some practices such as yoni massage, in combination with breath and sound therapy.


Overall it is an interesting read, although the chapter on ‘how to win and keep a woman’s love’ did make me smile, before exclaiming ‘what?’, because it included the line, ‘make her believe that she is always right, even when you know in your logical mind she is wrong’, I conclude that this could be construed as a little sexist.  Over the years I’ve met plenty of men who have acted without the help of their ‘logical brains’.


It must be said that I particularly enjoyed reading the interesting chapters on strengthening a woman’s pelvic floor, alkaline diet, body armouring and storing negative emotions. Mal’s work is certainly fascinating and he presents some interesting ideas and treatment suggestions.


Emotional Detox Through Bodywork can be purchased from Amazon and Waterstones




About Seren Charrington-Hollins

Food has always been of great importance to Seren and despite her being renowned for her historical recipe recreations, her culinary skills were not honed, in the kitchens of top restaurants, but in the home kitchen from the age of being able to hold a wooden spoon. When Seren was born her mother was taken ill and so she spent her early years being cared for by her grandmother, Minnie. This was to prove instrumental in the development of Seren’s love of cooking, for her grandmother was an accomplished cook, who’s kitchen was always awash with terrine’s, home-made pastry and traditional puddings. Minnie’s love of good food and her zest for life meant Seren’s childhood was filled with days of hedgerow picking, baking, traditional preserving and cooking recipes from the depths of a family copy of, Mrs. Beeton. She learned from an early age how to make Victorian puddings alongside elaborate noble pies and perhaps this explains her love of pastry making and the reason she won an accolade from The Great British Pie Awards this year. Today Seren has great skill in bringing historical food to life and making it accessible and understandable to the modern cook and diner. Her enthusiasm and love of historical food and British cooking is evident in her presentations and she loves to revive forgotten recipes. She recently took part in ITV1’s Country House Sunday and has given live cookery demonstrations across the country at food festivals, historical houses and castles. Trained as a herbalist and nutritionist, she has a deep understanding of improving health through food. Her interest in historic remedies and herbal folklore eventually extended to researching British food history, and reignited her early passion for cooking. Fifteen years on and Seren has amassed extensive knowledge and is now renowned for her historical food recreations and interpretations. Seren’s interest in food history does not just extend to old recipes and cooking techniques, but to ingredients and manufacturers. From the age of fourteen Seren has collected food and drink packaging from early Victorian to the 1960’s. Her collection is now extensive and provides a wonderful snapshot in time that accompanies her vast knowledge of the development of British food and drink companies throughout history. She also has a huge collection of antique kitchenalia and moulds which she uses to replicate historical recipes and portray past eras. Her training in herbalism and nutrition has not been wasted for despite her merits as a food historian and period cook she also delights in creating British Classic dishes for those with food allergies and intolerances (such as gluten and dairy intolerant). Her botanical knowledge has made her a keen wild food educator and forager that lends unusual as well as historical twists to all her cooking. There are also many points at which food and medicine intertwine throughout history and Seren is able to portray these developments and has also undertaken a lot of research into the British spice trade. To Seren historical food is not a job, but a way of life. Visit Seren's blog: Serenity Kitchen