Psychology is all about the study of human behaviour and the many
social experiences that affect it. These experiences include instinct,
culture, heredity and religion, and each triggers a corresponding
influence on sensation, emotion, consciousness and social orientation.
We may like to think we're all fairly unique, but in psychological
terms we're all fairly predictable. We share the same emotion-response
ethic which to an alien observer would appear sorely repetitive. Western
mankind has formulated a role model for himself, much exploited by
advertisers and media, and this the individual protects with an ill-fitting
suit of psychological armour. Behind the armour hides his or her self
image, which is generally preconditioned by external influences we
feel disinclined to question. Man is a conservative creature in that
he resists change. We feel safe with the old and threatened by the
new; we can readily observe the disappointment expressed through the
ages by successive generations for their errant offspring. We have
a way of forgetting that we were ever young, and of imposing false
realities on our life.....and on our children. However, the unstoppable rhythm of life and fate won't accept this
manicured approach. The psyche, the indomitable energy of our higher
self, powers the search for spiritual growth and forces the ego's
changing perception of reality, and we find ourselves compelled to
give up our preconceived definitions of life, derived from our parentage,
our schooling, our social heritage. The inevitable collision between
an unbending ego and our invincible psyche gives rise to depression,
in one form or another, and depressive conditions tell of the unconscious,
misunderstood and often calamitous path of spiritual growth. We react
variously with abnegation and self condemnation, or divorce, drugs,
Men and women of this fast moving age can grow up with very fixed
ideas on life, society and their role; as parents they may fear the
growing independence of their children. Or as adults they may criticise
their neighbours, their parents, fate, society, life. Beleaguered
by their own social heritage, they may despise the younger generation
for having more fun than they had, for being less responsible, for
not experiencing the stress of war, the hardships of declining social
standards. They mistrust minority groups and fashionable thinking
and herd off into collective perspectives. Perhaps we should re-examine the innocent outlook of childhood, an
uncluttered world of curiosity, creativity and spontaneity. We should
strive to recover that which we lost in struggling to become what
we now are. We are powered by the shifting goals of our parents' failed
ambitions, education's false horizons and the unsustainable disciplines
of cultural niceties like colour, creed and class. The conflicting priorities of childhood and adolescence, generally
misunderstood by both parent and child, lead most of us into one of
the two identifiable character 'types' of neurosis and disorder categorised
THE PSYCHOLOGICAL CATEGORIES:
|The unbalanced, ungrounded, unloved child
of an emotionally stressed background, typified by the claim 'its
all my fault, I'm so awful, stupid, sinful, wet..'.
||The stultified condition caused by parental
abuse, emotional neglect, childhood trauma. This state is typified
by the stout dismissal 'its not MY fault, its my fate; look what someone
else did to me, my family, my teachers, the government; the circumstances
are beyond my control'... etc.
Both the above conditions demand the courageous admission, 'I am
responsible, I accept responsibility for myself'. This crucial step
can take a lifetime to acknowledge and so find release from a fateful
heritage. We cannot blame our past, our parents, our society for ever.
The sooner we acknowledge responsibility for ourselves, and the sooner
we evaluate, assess and accept the psychological nature of our condition,
the sooner we step into the light of true knowledge.
This great Truth is enshrined in the Greek myth of Orestes, son of
Agamemnon and Clytemnestra, who was born to suffer the fate of his
family which had been cursed for generations of outrage, betrayal
and murder. The blameless Orestes suffered from the full weight of
his family's guilt, and alone disarmed and appeased Fate through personal
commitment and a willing and courageous acceptance of the issues he
had so innocently encountered9.
9 The myth of Orestes is recounted by Liz Greene in her book Astrology of Fate (see bibliography)
Psychology helps us to recognise and understand established behaviour
patterns and to recognise why we (and others) behave as we do. Predictable
actions are worth a thousand words, and psychology can reveal familiar
and repetitive wounds, phobias and motives. And it can help us, consequently,
to be more indulgent of our emotional demands when we find that we
are not alone with our inner sentiments and our indignant sub personalities
that destroy our joy, test our friendships and sabotage our potential
Psychological projections reflect our inclination to see, in others,
a positive or negative extension of our own personality. These will
usually reveal our undeveloped traits, and we may see people falsely
elevated or denigrated to match our own experience of them. We all
project to some extent at some time, but with a little awareness we
can withdraw our unreasoned expectations from our children, our neighbours,
our spouse and those reluctant old scapegoats our parents. Then we
can take the first faltering if enlightened steps into maturity, a
world where there is no judge but our own inflated ego, no anger but
that born of our own insecurity, no regret but that of our own disappointments
for the receding tideline of our self opinion, the false idol of modern
society. A fundamental understanding of psychology helps us all to
accept and understand the real message powering other peoples' behaviour
and thus more generously to accommodate their unspoken needs as well
as understanding our own. Anger is an expression of fear, and it is easy to see the fear of
humiliation precipitating the anger in the world. It is the fear that
we are being left behind on a sinking raft of indignant innocence,
unable to jump off into the unknown realm of our spiritual destiny
and meet the inevitable demands of our existence. We hang on grimly
to the outworn props of the ego and blame everyone else for our disappointments.
We can't voice our needs to those who bear the brunt of our discontent;
our fractured ego is too frail, too hurt. The wounds are deep and
psychological, so we come out fighting, demanding the impossible,
blaming the innocent and perpetuating our own godless condition. Humility is not to be equated with weakness. Just as our outlook
develops with advancing age, so do our needs and the needs of those
around us. Growth demands change, change of vision, of perspectives,
of expectations. And growth also demands death, the death of outworn
ideas, unworkable principles, outmoded beliefs. The rewards are both
spiritual and eternal, and we must seek out with vigour this path
of true meaning.
The psychological paths to the inner self are strewn with disappointment.
Psychotherapy has become a collective term for a mass of conflicting
disciplines - powered by a host of often over enthusiastic and under
qualified practitioners seeking to expunge their own unresolved crises
by encouraging their clients to wallow in theirs. In ten mis-spent
minutes a psychotherapist can make you doubt your love for a partner
or parent by reducing it to pathological projection. It is easy to
become an unsuspecting victim of our therapist, counsellor or astrologist.
The best counselling qualifications derive from life's rich experience
and these can't be learned out of a book.... Frequently the job of
a psychotherapist is merely to listen as the subject admits to himself
or herself, aloud and for the first time, their real feelings about
their life, their parentage, themselves. Sometimes these sessions
can be fairly colourful and the deep feelings that generally accompany
such talks should be encouraged out into the open, tears, rage and
all. We learn our emotional and social responses early in life, and these
are generally maladjusted and incomplete. We stride through life with
false gait until eventually the lie breaks out and we must attend
to our stunted development. The therapist's job is to identify and
quantify the subject's problems areas, and then to reactivate their
commitment to life and living, based upon his or her own unique values
and perspectives, even when these conflict with parental preference
or cultural and religious preconditioning. There is no better place
to start than talking, in professional confidence, to a well qualified
therapist, priest or counsellor. But the cure, as always, lies with the subject, and some therapists
allow their wounded, distraught and sometimes desperate subjects to
sit for far too long in the consulting room chair, paying the therapist
more than the job or their skill is worth. Therapists must gain the
trust and respect of the subject without monopolising their potential
for development, or allowing the subject to project upon them to be
the lost parent, lover or saviour in their life. Many therapists are
unwilling to see their bread money walk out of the door and pull every
trick in the book to convince their subjects that they are really
desperately maladjusted and can only survive by continuing in therapy.
Six or eight sessions should be booked at a time, with the clear understanding
that this commitment will be concluded before any further sessions
are commenced. This gives us a regular let-out when we judge we have
benefited enough from that particular engagement. All knowledge is valuable and self knowledge most of all. Most therapies
lead to self knowledge, but like religions, none is noticeably better
than any other. A good guide book on choosing a therapist, or personal
recommendation, is the best place to start.
We don't have to be neurotic or disorientated to benefit from psychological
counselling; we just have to be interested in self development and
willing to open the ill-fitting door on our vulnerable inner defences....
Unable to see or unwilling to look -
timeworn defences against
an inner call....
Counselling and Psychotherapies.
GROUP DESCRIPTION, GENERAL DETAILS
Therapy and Self Awareness
studies in current use.
|Study of illnesses of the mind. Medical treatments,
chemical straightjackets Electro-convulsive therapy (ECT)
|Study of Conditions of the mind.
Self knowledge and self encounter. Includes Books, Courses, Lectures,
Film and Non-medical studies.
|Behavioural change. Neuro-linguistic programming
(NLP). Hypno recall to childhood, Hypno analysis, Hypno regression.
Counselling, Stress Management. Samaritans, Bereavement counselling,
|Psychodrama. Drug rehabilitation Alcoholics-Anonymous
There are over
500 Cults in UK
|Obsessive religious groups.Ashrams.
Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. Charismatic Groups. Tele Evangelism. Scientology.
Body expressed Therapies
|Janov's Primal therapy. Bio-dynamic massage.
Reichian Orgone energy. Rebirthing experience. Staged expressions
of anger and feeling. Feldenkrais - releasing body tensions, the locked
smile, the clenched teeth, the hunched shoulders.
|Gestalt therapies, here-and-now approach
of Fritz Perls. Fusion of established theories. Exploring the Freudian
world of the Id while embracing a spiritual quest.
|Psycho-Synthesis (Roberto Assagioli).
Jungian orientated workshops (with lots of hugging). Astrological
counselling and birth charts. Spiritual awareness. Self encounter
|Talking, talking. Working with dreams, archetypes
and images (in the Jungian school). Or with free association of ideas
and emotions, the Inner child and infantile sexual development (Freudian
|Auras, Chakras, the Subtle bodies, Spiritual
healing, Clairvoyance, Chanting and Healing-harmonics. Psychic and