Since 2007 Sean Blackwell has been researching and teaching about the spiritual dimension and healing potential of bipolar disorder through his YouTube channel, bipolarORwakingUP. His videos graphically illustrate subjects such as spiritual emergency, transpersonal psychology, and the evolution of consciousness, always demonstrating how these themes relate to transcending the bipolar condition. His book, “Am I Bipolar or Waking Up?”, published in 2011, describes his own bipolar awakening, subsequent hospitalization, and complete recovery, which happened in 1996.
In 2013, Sean started The Bipolar Awakenings Healing Retreat, a pioneering program for people who wanted to heal from their so-called incurable condition. In September of 2016, Sean received his certification as a Holotropic Breathwork facilitator with Grof Transpersonal Training, the official training program of Dr. Stanislav Grof. This education has been fundamental to the development of the healing retreat process, as a modified form of Holotropic Breathwork, Bipolar Breathwork, provides the basis for the bioenergetic healing process which takes place during retreats.
Based on his six years of experience facilitating private retreats, Sean developed two new online healing modalities. In 2020, he launched Distance Surrogate Breathwork and Conscious Emotional Clearing, as two very affordable options that could help people begin to heal their bipolar conditions safely, within the comfort of their own home.
Ligia Splendore is a clinical psychologist licensed in São Paulo, Brazil (1986), with a post-graduate degree in Transpersonal Psychology from ALUBRAT - Associação Luso-Brasileira de Transpessoal (2008).
In 1991-92 she gained valuable experience, working as therapeutic support with the mental health system in Trieste, Italy - internationally recognized as one of the pioneering mental health services of the anti-psychiatry movement.
Since 2007, together with Sean, Ligia has been studying the relationship between bipolar disorder and Dr. Stanislav Grof's concept of spiritual emergency.
In 2009, she started the social network, almabipolar.org ("bipolar soul"), which offered psychoeducational support for those diagnosed with bipolar disorder. In 2017, almabipolar.org changed its name to Rethinking Madness (Repensando a Loucura) and it was integrated into the international campaign #EmergingProud.