Specifically, Richards’s concern is with an ascending scientific culture that dismisses poetic statements as invalid, as they do not correspond to any measurable facts and so can contribute nothing substantively meaningful to our knowledge of the world or human experience. In defence of poetic truth and the pre-eminence of the emotions, Richards’s description of the poetic experience has meaning for a therapeutic process in which the language of metaphor seems to correlate strongly with increased and predominantly right brain activity associated with positive feelings of self and self-other relatedness. If the nurturing of these primarily imagistic-affective centres of the brain is indeed the work of a reciprocally nurtured non-linear language of feeling, then poetry’s ‘pseudo-statements’ may have real-world value in the treatment of relationally traumatised patients by promoting self cohesion and the capacity to relate more adaptively.
In therapy we are constantly struggling with the paradox and tension between firmness/rigidity and flexibility. The first provides the requisite clarity and stability that generates safety, the second provides for the possibility of change. Boundaries are important in a variety of ways in all therapies. Within the Conversational Model boundaries are seen as central to the notion of self and its development. Without developing the capacity to distinguish between inner and outer there can be no self and thus there can be no distinction between self and other.
The relationship between borderline personality disorder (BPD) and traumatic attachment and abuse in childhood is documented in numerous studies around the world. Over seventy per cent of these patients reported a childhood history of emotional abuse – that is frequent experiences of being shamed or humiliated, being frustrated by being given mixed messages, being put in impossible situations, having their thoughts and feelings denied.
We announce our arrival in the world as separate individuals with the cry. The cry, and the environmental response to the cry, determines the initial atmosphere in the consciousness of the neonate.
We tend to think that dream theories started with Freud and Jung. In fact a number of dream pioneers had published on the topic in the late 1800s’ Europe. I spent the last months reading one of
This talk puts forward some ideas towards an answer to this question. The discussion involves observations from two pioneers of dream research, Maury and Hervey de Saint-Denis; a dream of Jung, commented