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9142465882?profile=originalU.K.-based psychotherapist and activist, Andrew Samuels has a long history as a consultant to political clients on the presidential and prime ministerial level. While Samuels first published Politics on the Couch in 2001 and The Political Psyche in 2015, his newest book, A New Therapy for Politics? delves ever more deeply into the intersection between psychotherapy and politics and lends a critical eye to his own chosen profession in an effort to bring the two together.

Sigmund Freud and C. G. Jung, both pioneers in the field of psychotherapy, wrote about politics over the course of their careers, Samuels points out, but psychotherapists have generally been “magnificently unsuccessful” in creating a significant contribution to the political arena.

Jung was very aware of “how the political world penetrates into the silent, pure space of the consulting room,” Samuels maintains, but most psychotherapists don’t have much of a reach outside their own community of therapeutic professionals.

Notably, they tend to be completely caught up in their own language and their own concept. The inclination to maintain that “everything is psychological” results in hierarchical dynamics where psychologists or therapists place themselves above the everyday fray that makes up politics. This positioning weakens their capacity to add value or engage in a meaningful way, a position that is exacerbated by... READ the full post here

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9142464878?profile=originalSociety has short-term memory and is silent on issues of identity, says David Ragland, Ph.D., Co-founder and Co-director of The Truth Telling Project. Racism and causes of police violence are historical, are deeply rooted in our society, and are even an aspect of intergenerational trauma.  

The Truth Telling Project is a grassroots initiative that focuses on how communities can tell their stories. Ragland grew up a few miles from Ferguson, Missouri, a city that became famous in the wake of the fatal shooting of 18-year-old African American Michael Brown by white police officer, Darren Wilson, in August 2014, and the ensuing riots it instigated.

In the aftermath of the tragedy, The Truth Telling Project evolved to share local voices to tell people’s stories, to educate America and eliminate structural violence and systemic racism against Black people in the United States. Storytelling helps us reach out and connect with who we perceive as the "other” and empowers us to action. Every community has its own stories, which ultimately amount to its culture. Part of the work of transformation is to tell our own stories and listen with open hearts to those who have been traumatized for too long… (Read the full post or listen to the interview on Pacifica Post HERE)

 

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I am honored to have been invited to post a guest blog on the Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association. It's about the Alliance and it just went up! Check it out if you have a moment:

Greater than the Sum of Its Parts: Depth Psychology and the Honeybee Hive

One glorious late spring day on Pacifica’s Ladera Campus I witnessed a humming, writhing, vibrant swarm of honeybees on a bougainvillea bush. It stopped me in my tracks, entrancing me with the sheer number and proximity of bees buzzing around what seemed to be a living, breathing organ that almost pulsed with power—what turned out to be, in the end, a mass of bees itself. It is no wonder that the beehive is known as a super organism, more than the sum of its individual parts.

I have been fascinated by honeybees since the first warning signs of an alarming phenomenon taking place in the natural world—a problem that came to be called “Colony Collapse Disorder.” In 2006, a significant number of beekeepers began reporting finding their hives unexpectedly empty, except for the queen and a handful of her attendants. To the great bewilderment and concern of scientists, the majority of the bees appeared to be vanishing without a trace.

Captivated as I was by this inexplicable disappearance of the honeybees, I set out to research it in depth, ultimately writing my Master’s thesis in depth psychology about the symbolic nature of bees and the significance of Colony Collapse Disorder, a theme I expanded to the notion of Culture Collapse Disorder when it came time to write my doctoral dissertation at Pacifica. My conclusions ultimately focused on the problem of separation and its implications. In Colony Collapse Disorder, bees seem to become disoriented and unable to go home to the hive. Their failure to return is a virtual death sentence for the individual bees, who are unlikely to live through the night when their wings grow too cold to carry them, and they are left alone, vulnerable, and unable to fend for themselves. It is also signals a death knell for the hive which, as more bees go out to forage and fail to return, grows empty and cold, no longer able to sustain itself as a buzzing, vibrant life force—both a container for and a source of life.

In contemporary western culture, humans, too, suffer from separation—the loss of connection to a larger web of meaning embodied by nature and enlivened by our now-forgotten ties to the sacred that was once the domain of our ancestors. While Jung, Hillman, and others have gone to great lengths to....Click here to finish reading on the PGIAA site

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