Land, Language, Silence: A Depth Psychological Perspective on Working with the Navajo at Black Mesa

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Oct 19, 2016 4:38:54 PM

A guest post by Bonnie Bright, Ph.D.

When Jonathan Rudow goes into a community to conduct research, he is highly conscious of the fact that he arrives with a particular lens—a lens we each develop individually over the course of our lives evolving from our personal experiences, family values, and cultural conditioning. That lens never allows for the full picture, Jonathan insisted when he sat down with me recently to discuss his work with the Navajo (or the Diné people, as they refer to themselves) at Back Mesa in Arizona. The term “Diné,” meaning—“the people”—is a preferred descriptor for the tribe, Jonathan learned, because in the worldview of the Diné, amongst the many varied animals and “figures” in the world, “the people” are considered just one more of those figures that make up the world. The name “Navajo” was never a name the Diné took upon themselves.

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Posted in: Connecting Cultures, Ecopsychology, community psychology

Who was Carl Jung and why should we study him and his work?

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Oct 17, 2016 10:05:40 AM

A guest post by Craig Chalquist, Ph.D.

Carl Gustav Jung was born in 1875, died in 1961, and lived in Switzerland all his life, although he traveled now and then. He was a psychiatrist, seeing patients and pioneering various techniques in experimental research before focusing on psychoanalysis and then on evolving his own kind of depth psychology. He created innovative methods for working with symptoms, dreams, fantasies, visions, and even works of art on the level of psychological symbolism.

A remarkable thing about Jung’s work is that so little of it is out of date.

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Posted in: C.G. Jung, history of psychology, Psychology, depth psychology

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFTs) eligible to work at the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA)

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Oct 10, 2016 1:48:36 PM

A big congratulations to the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapy (CAMFT) for working to grant eligible LMFTs employment at the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA)!

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Posted in: Counseling Psychology, Current Affairs, Pacifica News, graduate school, vocation, Education

Depth Psychology in Work and Career Part I: Depth Psychology and the contributions of Sigmund Freud and C.G. Jung

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Oct 3, 2016 2:13:13 PM

A guest post by Craig Chalquist, Ph.D.

Depth Psychology and the contributions of Sigmund Freud and C.G. Jung.

As outlined in Pacifica’s definition, depth psychology is an interdisciplinary body of psychological practices and traditions that study the interactions between conscious and unconscious. Psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined the term in 1910 to describe psychoanalytic approaches to therapy and research.

The question of who founded the field is more complex than the usual answer: Sigmund Freud and C.G. Jung, both interested in exploring what pulses and simmers below our customary awareness. In France, Pierre Janet coined “subconscious” to describe the inner roots of psychological symptoms without apparent biological causes. One of his patients wept a lot without knowing why. She had never mourned the loss of two loved ones. Finding this out alleviated her symptoms.

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Posted in: C.G. Jung, history of psychology, Psychology, depth psychology

Depth Psychology in Work and Career Part II

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Oct 3, 2016 2:11:20 PM

A guest post by Craig Chalquist, Ph.D.

Depth psychologists don’t job-hunt without taking the psyche into account. What does this mean?

It means that the job I consciously think I belong in might not be the job that fulfills me. Many of us know exactly what kind of work we “should” do according to external standards we’ve internalized, but how many know what would complete us, give a sense of mission, bring joy and refreshment? Not many.

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Posted in: C.G. Jung, history of psychology, Psychology, depth psychology

Working with the Ancestors: A Jungian Perspective with Sandra Easter, Ph.D.

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Sep 28, 2016 2:37:47 PM

A guest post by Bonnie Bright, Ph.D.

For Sandra Easter, author of Jung and the Ancestors: Beyond Biography, Mending the Ancestral Web, her journey toward ancestral healing has been filled with synchronicities. Growing up, Sandra always heard from her mother that they were descended from Roger Williams, a man who is credited with founding Providence, Rhode Island, in 1636. Synchronistically, the very same day Sandra’s own daughter decided she wanted to write a school report on this alleged ancestor, Sandra received a document which surprised her by actually confirming direct ancestry on her mother’s side from Roger Williams.

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Posted in: C.G. Jung, images, imaginal

How Memory Tending Can Transform You: An Interview with Dr. Daphne Dodson

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Sep 19, 2016 12:35:29 PM

A guest post by Bonnie Bright, Ph.D.

You may have donated that Times of Your Life Paul Anka 8-track to charity when it didn’t sell at the last neighborhood rummage sale, but the words to “Good Morning Yesterday” live on. Sometimes it is hard to find the “memories you left behind” as Anka sang in 1976. Sometimes, as Freud argued, those memories sink below the level of our consciousness, but continue to work on us in various ways even decades later. Sigmund Freud even formulated a term “return of the repressed” to explain where neurotic symptoms originate, writing that

illness is characterized by the return of the repressed memories -- that is, therefore, by the failure of the defence.... The re-activated memories, however, and the self-reproaches formed from them never re-emerge into consciousness unchanged: what become conscious as obsessional ideas and affects¹

Jung, too, expressed the opinion that our memories can torment us to a dangerous extent when he wrote,

It may be that the majority of hysterical persons are ill because they possess a mass of memories, highly charged with affect and therefore deeply rooted in the unconscious, which cannot be controlled and which tyrannize the conscious mind and will of the patient.²

You don’t have to be a depth psychologist to notice when, at times, memories of your own rise up unexpectedly out of nowhere, often instigating powerful emotions. It happens for me with a handful of certain memories show up, surprising me with their content and their intensity, making me wonder why a certain memory would arise for me when millions of others are lost.

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Posted in: Trauma, Alumni, transformative, symbol, images

Supervising in Depth: Pacifica Launches a New Certificate Training Program

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Sep 19, 2016 10:45:24 AM

Professors Joseph Cambray, Linda Carter, Avedis Panajian, Joseph Bobrow, and Lionel Corbett have come together to co-teach in the new certificate training program Becoming a Supervisor in Depth.

The program is nine sessions over the course of 10 months on a designated Thursday evening, and teaches the skills and approaches necessary to become a supervisor from a depth psychological orientation. 

See below for a reprinted interview between Pacifica Alumni Bonnie Bright and Pacifica Provost Dr. Joseph Cambray who will be teaching in the program.

Psychotherapy is pervasive in contemporary culture. Even if you’re not a therapist yourself, if you’re taking the time to read this post, chances are good that either you or someone close to you has been involved in therapy at some point in their lives. And, while you may feel you have a good understanding of what happens in the therapy room, there may be more than meets the eye. Do you ever wonder, for example, what has to occur in the therapeutic process so that the basic experience is what it needs to be for both the client and the therapist? How does a therapist tap into the unconscious in order to help the client be more of “who they are”? How does synchronicity—and the interactive field that emerges between two individuals—serve up messages from the unconscious for the benefit of the work? More, where does the therapist her/himself turn for help in honing their own intuition and skills that ultimately contribute to their own individuation process in working with clients?

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Posted in: Therapist, C.G. Jung, clinical psychology, Psychology, depth psychology

Narcissistic Tendencies: Donald Trump and Shakespeare's Macbeth

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Sep 14, 2016 3:53:51 PM

A new book A Clear and Present Danger: Narcissism in the Era of Donald Trump has just been released by Chrion Publications. The book features twenty articles on the subject of narcissism, written by esteemed professors and professionals of psychology and depth psychology. I recently caught up with Dr. Susan Rowland, chair of Pacifica's M.A. Engaged Humanities and the Creative Life Program who wrote "The Demonic and Narcissistic Power of the Media in Shakespeare's Macbeth" for the section of the book titled Archetypal Narcissism. Here is our dialogue about the book:

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Posted in: Current Affairs, archetypes, Pacifica News, literature

Getting Past the Threshold and Into the Classroom

Posted by Nikole Hollenitsch on Sep 9, 2016 1:48:48 PM

A guest post by Craig Chalquist, Ph.D.

You’ve investigated which schools offer what; you’ve found a suitable program; and you’re ready to apply. What holds you back?

You’ve applied but not completed the application. How come?

You’ve completed the application but not paid the fee. Why?

I’ve been there. Twice: when entering the master’s program in Marriage and Family Therapy at CalLutheran University, and when enrolling at Pacifica Graduate Institute for my PhD in Depth Psychology. Why do we resist committing ourselves? Perhaps we can look at it psychologically.

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Posted in: graduate school, Education