Somatic Jungian-based Depth Psychology

Rite of Passage Presentation

Rite of Passage Presentation

Somatic psychology is the science of the body that focuses on the vital connection relationship between psychological symptoms and physical states. This holistic,alternative and experiential approach helps us to better understand our (bodily) experiences to feel more embodied in self.

While body psychology has been around for hundreds of years and is widely practiced in Europe.  The tremendous amount of interest in somatic psychology today is due to advances in neuroscience and f MRI imagery brain mapping capabilities.

“As soon as you can trust yourself, you will know how to live.” Wolfgang Von Goethe
Carl Jung

Carl Jung

What is Jungian analysis?

Jungian analysis is a specialized form of therapy in which the analyst and patient work together to increase the patient’s consciousness in order to move toward psychological balance and wholeness, to bring relief and meaning to psychological suffering.

This process treats a broad range of emotional disorders such as depression and anxiety, and it can also assist anyone who wishes to pursue psychological growth.  At the heart of Jungian analysis is a realignment of conscious and unconscious aspects of the personality with an ensuing creation of new values and purpose.

Most of our adverse behavioral issues, belief patterns, projections, communication challenges and fears posing concerns in our life, or that are holding us back, are housed deep with in our unconscious psyche.  

The EGO's (conscious self) primary job is to protect our identity.  The EGO will go to great lengths to accomplish this task including lie to us through rationalization, justification, projection, denial and disassociation. 

However, the BODY (unconscious psyche) NEVER LIES! 

This process treats a broad range of emotional disorders such as depression and anxiety, and it can also assist anyone who wishes to pursue psychological growth.  At the heart of Jungian analysis is a realignment of conscious and unconscious aspects of the personality with an ensuing creation of new values and purpose.

How does Jungian analysis work?

The focus of sessions can come from patients’ experiences in their daily lives; their memories of the past; their feelings and reflections in response to such experiences, memories, or interactions with the analyst; and their dreams, or other spontaneous forms of expression. The strength of the relationship between analyst and patient plays a critical role in this process.

Just becoming more mindful and consciously present in our daily life alone can be a very powerful spiritual transformation experience.

PSYCHE The PSYCHE itself is the totality of all psychological processes, whether conscious or unconscious.

EGO The EGO is the center of consciousness, whose understanding is limited to consciousness. 

SELF The SELF is the center of the whole psyche, and comprises both consciousness and the unconscious.  It is archetypal and like all archetypes can be known only through symbols and feelings.  Analytic work moves beyond the ego and seeks to establish a relationship between ego and self, so that the psyche feels balanced and energized.

PERSONA The PERSONA is a social identity that we frequently identify with the ego. Analytic work, however, differentiates it from the ego, so that we recognize that we are much more than the social roles we may play and can move beyond them.

SHADOW The SHADOW contains the unconscious aspects of our personality that have been lost, rejected or never integrated. If we can identify and acknowledge these unconscious, unrecognized or disowned parts of ourselves we are less likely to blame others for our problems. In addition, the conscious integration of the energy inherent in shadow material can enrich and enliven us. Thus Jung viewed shadow integration as a moral as well as a psychological process which, he believed, holds the most hope for us as individuals and for society as a whole.

Jung also defined two other fundamental archetypes in the unconscious that appear often in dreams and fantasies. He labeled the inner feminine side of a man the ANIMA and the inner masculine side of a woman the ANIMUS. When we become conscious of these inner contra-sexual figures, their energy can strengthen and support our endeavors, opening us to new areas of thinking, feeling, and expression. When these figures remain unconscious, however, they can sabotage our efforts for growth and fulfillment.

What is the difference between analysis and therapy?

The terms “Jungian analysis”, “Jungian psychoanalysis” and “Jungian therapy” are frequently used loosely and interchangeably. Analysis, however, is a special form of psychotherapy that works closely with the unconscious.

Three important differences between analysis and therapy foster the deep personal change of the analytic process:

  • The goal of analysis is to bring the patient awareness and understanding of what was formerly unconscious, whereas the aim of therapy is often merely symptom relief.

  • Analysis examines motivations in our thoughts and actions that lie beneath conscious awareness to achieve deeper and more long lasting changes in the personality than traditional therapies can effect.

  • Analysis focuses on process-what happens within sessions-in addition to content-the inner and outer experiences of our lives.

How is Jungian analysis different from other forms of analysis?

The fundamental goal of Jungian analysis is to build a vital relationship between the conscious and unconscious parts of the mind so that psychic development can be ongoing. Rather than regarding the unconscious merely as the repository of repressed memories, Jung viewed it as the wellspring of psychic energy and healing. 

He acknowledged the importance of understanding how the deficits and trauma of our history influence us, but stressed the need to look to the future as well, to understand our inner urge to become the unique individuals that we each have the potential to be.

Like other forms of analysis, Jungian analysis recognizes the important roles of sex, aggression, and human relationships in our daily lives, but it also respects our needs for creative expression, meaning, spirituality, and growth as essential aspects of the human psyche.

Jung believed that we develop symptoms when we are stuck in old patterns and fail to integrate creative potentials within our personality. Often such symptoms motivate us to begin analysis. If we do not understand the deeper causes underlying those symptoms and focus merely on their relief, problems are likely to resurface in other ways, such as difficulties in relationships or emotional blocks.

To forge a connection with the unconscious Jungian's utilize symbols that emerge spontaneously in patients’ fantasies, dreams, creative projects and daily experience. Many of these images are archetypal and also appear in myths and religious traditions. Concentrating on such images generates energy that catalyzes impulses to explore new realms of possibility and action that leads to personal transformation.

Who can benefit from Jungian analysis?

Jungian analysis can help most people who have a genuine desire to learn about themselves and are willing and able to commit to regularly scheduled meetings over a sustained period of time. Those who suffer from a range of emotional problems, including depression and anxiety, those who seek better relationships, and those who seek growth and deeper meaning in their lives can benefit richly from Jungian analysis.  Many people engaged in spiritual exploration and the creative arts are attracted to Jungian work and find analysis quite rewarding. But because Jungian work seeks balance, and respects the many parts of our psyche, a particular way of thinking or personality type is not required for the process to be effective.

Do I need to remember my dreams to work with a Jungian?

Although dreams often play a central role in Jungian analysis, it is not necessary to remember them to begin the process. There are many ways to access the unconscious; fantasies, memories, imaginative and creative projects, movement, the events of our daily lives, and analytic interactions themselves can all foster a symbolic approach to the psyche. Many patients discover, however, that Jungian analysis itself stimulates them to remember dreams even if they have not done so previously.

Often all we need to do is pause, slow down and allow what wants to be known to be known.  Jungian It is in the body that our experiences live and are perceived as emotions.  Our thoughts and language alone do not constitute reality.  It is the sensations in our bodies that shape our perceptions and memories and makes them real!

If this be the case then the objective of any successful therapeutic approach is to reconnect with the body, which is where our inner truth resides. 

Access of our inner truth allows us to move through blocks, scattered thoughts that keep us stuck or reappear as self destructive behavior and integrate these feelings back into the body for balance.  Once we these challenges, obstacles and fears are eliminated a deeper understanding of who we are, why we are here and what our purpose in life is becomes very clear.  This is where peace of mind, joy and happiness can be found.

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