Monday, April 6, 2020

Merritt on Covid-19: Inflection Point in the Anthropocene Era and the Paradigm Shift of Jung’s New Age

Covid-19: Inflection Point in the Anthropocene Era and the Paradigm Shift of Jung’s New Age

Article by Dennis L. Merritt, Ph.D.

The Covid-19 pandemic has created a unique moment in the history of our species. Something so small it takes an electron microscope to see is disrupting millions of lives and threatening the world’s economy. Frontline workers risk their lives trying to save patients who may die alone without friends or family at their sides. A virus, a strand of nucleic acid that highjacks the functioning of a cell to reproduce its unique viral form, is bringing our species to a near standstill. Despite the wonders of science, technology, and economic systems we can still be humbled by nature, indeed, by a strand of nucleic acid. It is crucial how we respond to the situation. What can we learn from it and how do we go forward?

We start with an adequate framing of the issue. This is an issue of life and death, which means it is in the most fundamental archetypal realm and requires an archetypal perspective. The fear of death from the pandemic is bringing a sense of immediacy and urgency on a planet-wide scale. Death cannot be separated from life, death makes us aware of the preciousness of life, and death confronts us with questions about the meaning of existence and our place it the bigger scheme of things. Death can bring an end to systems and beliefs that no longer support life and a healthy existence, and that could be the most important outcome of the present crisis.

The virus is demonstrating to what degree we are interconnected and how much we need each other. The forced social isolation and six-foot distancing has cut us off from intimate contacts and group experiences making us aware by absence how important we are to each other.  The ghostly empty streets in otherwise bustling cities are eerie reminders that our systems are in shock at all levels. Like a nightmare that wakes us in the middle of the night, this shock is meant to shock us into a new awareness.

Read more...

Dennis L. Merritt, Ph.D., is a Jungian psychoanalyst and ecopsychologist in private practice in Madison and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Dr. Merritt is a diplomate of the C.G. Jung Institute, Zurich and also holds the following degrees: M.A. Humanistic Psychology-Clinical, Sonoma State University, California, Ph.D. Insect Pathology, University of California-Berkeley, M.S. and B.S. Entomology, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Dr. Merritt is the author of Jung, Hermes, and Ecopsychology: The Dairy Farmer's Guide to the Universe Volumes 1 - 4.


Friday, July 13, 2018

Jungian Child Analysis


Just Published by Fisher King Press

Jungian Child Analysis

Jungian Child Analysis brings together ten certified Child and Adolescent Analysts (IAAP) to discuss how healing with children occurs within the analytical framework. While the majority of Jung’s corpus centered on the collective aspects of the adult psyche, one can find in Jung’s earliest work clinical observations and ideas that reflect an uncanny prescience of the psychological research that would later emerge regarding the self and the mother-infant relationship. This book discusses and illustrates in very practical ways how one uses an analytical attitude and works with the symbolic: this includes illustrations of analytical play therapy, dream analysis, sandplay, work with special populations and work with the parents and families of the child. Not only will the book capture your interest and further your development in working with children and adolescents, but also will enhance your work with adults.

Jungian Child Analysis, edited by Audrey Punnett; foreword by Wanda Grosso; contributors include Margo M. Leahy, Liza J. Ravitz, Brian Feldman, Lauren Cunningham, Patricia L. Speier, Maria Ellen Chiaia, Audrey Punnett, Susan Williams, Robert Tyminski, and Steve Zemmelman.

Contents:
Preface – Wanda Grosso
Introduction – Audrey Punnett

Chapter 1 – Margo M. Leahy
Jung and the Post-Jungians on the Theory of Jungian Child Analysis

Chapter 2 – Liza J. Ravitz
Child Analysis and the Multilayered Psyche

Chapter 3 – Brian Feldman
The Aesthetic and Spiritual Life of the Infant: Towards a Jungian View of Infant Development

Chapter 4 – Lauren Cunningham
Play, Creation and the Numinous

Chapter 5 – Patricia L. Speier
The Portal of Play Through a Jungian Frame

Chapter 6 – Maria Ellen Chiaia
The Importance of Being: Silence in Child Analysis

Chapter 7 – Audrey Punnett
Children’s Dreams

Chapter 8 – Susan Williams
Awakening to Inter-subjectivity: Working with Autistic Spectrum Disorders

Chapter 9 – Robert Tyminski
Males Coming to Terms with Sexuality in Later Adolescence

Chapter 10 – Steve Zemmelman
Working with Parents in Child Analysis and Psychotherapy: An Integrated Approach




Editor: Audrey Punnett
Paperback: 250 pages
Condition: New
Edition: First
Index, Bibliography
Publisher: Fisher King Press (May 21, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1771690380
ISBN-13: 978-1771690386

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Our Creative Fingerprint

by Nancy Carter Pennington and Lawrence H. Staples

Creative work is the handmaiden of self-discovery. No matter where our creative work starts or what path it follows—with a word, with a note, with a brushstroke—it eventually, with repeated effort, returns us home to the very source of our beings. We are never more true to ourselves than when we are creating something. Inexorably, what we create reflects ourselves as profoundly, faithfully and uniquely as our fingerprints. Each single thing we create, no matter when or under what conditions it was produced, will bear trace deposits of ourselves, a creative fingerprint sufficient to identify us and show who we are just as our physical fingerprints do.

For those who know how to interpret them, our creative fingerprints are as unerring as our physical fingerprints in identifying us. Our creations are self-portraits. We cannot escape ourselves no matter how hard we may try. In all art, there is an underlying voice that cannot be completely hidden or extinguished. In the end, our creative work can reflect only one thing: ourselves.

Topics explored in Our Creative Fingerprint include: Creativity and Inner Truth—part of which examines seven paintings by Frida Kahlo, Divine Discontent: The Inner Urge to Create, Transformation: Cleaning Our Psychic Augean Stables, and Creativity and Rebirth.

About the Authors
Nancy Carter Pennington received her MSW from The University of Maryland. For more than 30 years, Nancy has had the privilege of working with clients on a range of issues: phobias, OCD, grief, depression, obsessive thinking, guilt, and relationships.

Lawrence Staples has a Ph.D. in psychology; his special areas of interest are the problems of midlife, guilt, and creativity. Dr. Staples is a diplomate of the C.G. Jung Institute, Zürich, Switzerland, and also holds AB and MBA degrees from Harvard. In addition to Guilt with a Twist: The Promethean Way, Lawrence is author of the top-selling book The Creative Soul: Art and the Quest for Wholeness and co-author, with Nancy Carter Pennington, of The Guilt Cure.

Title: Our Creative Fingerprint
Paperback: 92 pages
Publisher: Fisher King Press (January 6, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1771690402
ISBN-13: 978-1771690409

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Jacob & Esau: On the Collective Symbolism of the Brother Motif

 by Erich Neumann (Author), Erel Shalit  (Editor), Mark Kyburz (Translator)

In 1934, Erich Neumann, considered by many to have been Carl Gustav Jung's foremost disciple, sent Jung a handwritten note: "I will pursue your suggestion of elaborating on the 'Symbolic Contributions' to the Jacob-Esau problem . . . The great difficulty is the rather depressing impossibility of a publication." Now, eighty years later, in Jacob and Esau: On the Collective Symbolism of the Brother Motif, his important work is finally published.

In this newly discovered manuscript, Neumann sowed the seeds of his later works. It provides a window into his original thinking and creative writing regarding the biblical subject of Jacob and Esau and the application of the brother motif to analytical psychology.

Neumann elaborates on the central role of the principle of opposites in the human soul,
contrasting Jacob's introversion with Esau's extraversion, the sacred and the profane, the inner and the outer aspects of the God-image, the shadow and its projection, and how the old ethic-expressed, for example, in the expulsion of the scapegoat-perpetuates evil.

Mark Kyburz, translator of C. G. Jung's The Red Book, has eloquently rendered Neumann's text into English. Erel Shalit's editing and introduction provide an entrée into Neumann's work on this subject, which will be of interest to a wide range of readers, from lay persons to professionals interested in Jungian psychology and Jewish and religious studies.

Erich Neumann was born in Berlin in 1905. He emigrated to Israel in 1934 and lived in Tel Aviv until his death in 1960. For many years he lectured and played a central role at Eranos, the seminal conference series in analytical psychology. His writings include Depth Psychology and a New Ethic, The Origins and History of Consciousness, and The Great Mother. The correspondence between C.G. Jung and Neumann was published in 2015.

Dr. Erel Shalit is a Jungian psychoanalyst in Israel and founding director of the Analytical Psychotherapy Program at Bar Ilan University. He is the author of several books, including The Cycle of Life, The Hero and His Shadow, Enemy, Cripple, Beggar: Shadows in the Hero's Path, and The Complex: Path of Transformation from Archetype to Ego.

Dr. Mark Kyburz specializes in scholarly translation from German into English and is the co-translator of C. G. Jung's The Red Book (2009). He lives and works in Zürich, Switzerland.

Title: Jacob & Esau: On the Collective Symbolism of the Brother Motif
Paperback: 126 pages
Publisher: Chiron Publications (February 1, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1630512168
ISBN-13: 978-1630512163

Monday, April 25, 2016

War of the Ancient Dragon: Transformation of Violence in Sandplay

 War of the Ancient Dragon: Transformation of Violence in Sandplay by Laurel A. Howe
From the Publisher - Laurel Howe’s War of the Ancient Dragon is a significant contribution to depth psychology. I suspect that far more would be resolved, and much less of the world’s suffering would be in vain, if only we could transform the wars in the Middle East and elsewhere into the likes of Randy's sand trays. War of the Ancient Dragon: Transformation of Violence in Sandplay is a major contribution to Jungian Psychology, Sandplay Therapy, and to the world at large. I urge you to read and to tell others about this powerfully moving book. - Mel Mathews, Publisher, Fisher King Press
ABOUT THIS BOOK
Six-year-old Randy conducts bloody wars in the sandtray, calling them "World War One," "World War Two," and "The War of the Ancient Dragon." He burns fires and bombs helpless victims, killing some and saving others. What could possibly be going on in his imagination?

The contents of his imagination—what the alchemists call the “realm of subtle bodies”—are revealed in his sandplay from one session to the next, and there we see the raw, autonomous dynamism that motivates Randy, already branded a bully and nearly expelled from first grade. We see fiery, destructive conflict, part his, part his culture’s, part lived, part projected, a conflict of archetypal opposites that engulf Randy’s personality and fuel his violent behavior.

But also from Randy’s imaginal world, out of the very war between opposites that drives him, the unknown third possibility unfolds. Allowed to exist and be seen with a paradoxical healing aim, the war fights itself out over time in the safe container of the sandtray, finds its unpredictable resolution, and gradually releases Randy from its grip. He finally emerges, calling himself “king of the bloodfire,” returned to the rule of his own emotional life. He has adapted to school, proud of his achievements, a star student in math.

Randy’s lively narratives animate his dramas and reveal the distinct hallmarks of an alchemical opus over the course of 24 therapy sessions. He remarkably echoes the words of the ancient sages such as Zosimos, who centuries ago in his own imagination witnessed the “torture” of transformation in fire.

Randy’s process is thoroughly documented and amplified, unveiling the alchemical stages of transformation—nigredo, albedo, and rubedo—in a way that helps us relate to those chapters in our own individuation struggles. Psychological Perspectives editor Margaret Johnson writes that the work is “valuable above and beyond being a case study because it remarkably grounds what can be very illusive alchemical imagery into psychological experience.”

War of the Ancient Dragon guides us through the gritty realities of the alchemical process, helping us realize how they can manifest in everyday life, dream images, and fantasy. Above all the book is a testament to the healing capacities of the imagination, the humble “star in man” that connects us to the unconscious: to unknown and unexpected developments in ourselves.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Laurel Howe is a Jungian analyst who earned her diploma from the Center for Research and Training in Depth Psychology According to C.G. Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz in Zürich. She is a faculty member of the C.G. Jung Institute of Colorado, a teaching member of the International Society of Sandplay Therapy and the Sandplay Therapists of America, and an advisory board member of the Colorado Sandplay Therapy Association. She has a private practice in Lakewood, Colorado where she works with children and adults and mentors students of analytic psychotherapy and sandplay therapy. In addition to sandplay and alchemy, Laurel writes and presents lectures on the history and psychological meaning of Mary Magdalene and feminine archeological images from the Levant prior to and during the development of the Old Testament.

Title: War of the Ancient Dragon: Transformation of Violence in Sandplay
Author: Laurel A. Howe
Paperback: 166 pages
Condition: New
Edition: First
Index, Bibliography
Publisher: Fisher King Press (April 28, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10:1771690348
ISBN-13: 9781771690348