illustration of life and health by Phil Krikland

Depth psychology to the people!

Psychology is the study of the soul, or the mind if you will. With increasing exploration, we find how infinitely large our human mind really is. But most of us paint ourselves into more or less narrow corners.

By various mechanisms we are forced to a life on the surface of our own minds. We will strike a blow for depth psychology.

We are also forced into an individualized thinking around ourselves and our own psyche. We want to strike a blow for the general in us.

By acknowledging and integrating the universal into the depths of each of us, the world can become a better place. We are constantly developing our understanding of this field, and will take more on the journey. Into ourselves and from there out into the world.

Here you can read more about lectures from our psychologists.

We in the loom

We are fascinated by individuality. We exalt independence. We hold ourselves and others personally responsible. We assume free will and call ourselves blacksmiths of our own happiness.

Not a bad word about any of this. But we will probably have to find a better balance. We must also acknowledge that we are tiny pieces in a solid cosmic game, far more ordinary, addicted and programmed than we like to think.

In such a perspective, some personal honor disappears, but also shame and guilt. We think that is good for us.

When we are swallowed up by ourselves, the problems pile up. When we recognize the large weave we are part of, the pattern itself becomes the most important thing.

Our own shape and color is important as an expression of a greater creation, but less important in itself.

It is a perspective one can find rest in.

The organism wants us well

Every day we help individuals, couples and families. We help them to dissolve into small and large knots that have settled inside the individual, and in the relationship.

Few people understand the roots of these knots. If you have the right suspicion, you can still not do anything about it. Why?

Our psyche is very protective of its wounds. Once bitten, twice shy. We often do not realize how common it is to be burned. We end up with a story we tell ourselves.

The history that culture accepts.

But the body carries the raw data. It remembers what the mind forgot. From automatic bodily responses we can read the hints from lived reality.

The most important thing we teach is to step aside and let our body and its whole us, rather than take control ourselves. That is the problem in the first place.

That we have lost the basic trust in our own minds, in our own organism and the great whole we are part of.

Our organisms have evolved over millions of years and they want us well. We must learn to listen inwardly and let go of the wordless, intuitive knowledge that seeks to express itself.

The deepest healing goes bottom-up. From body to mind.

Then the roots of the knots will reveal themselves. And then they can be dissolved.

The fear of hurting and being hurt

What happens when we leave the conscious, mental plane of explanation? The planet where the self is at the center, next to the nearest? What we see is that the deeper into the psyche we go, the more general it all becomes.

When we let our nature express itself, we rediscover precisely nature that expresses itself. Our problems arise when we forget this. When we think we are detached entities with individual pathology that is shameful and must be suppressed.

What we see is that it is the same principles that govern us all. These are laws of nature. They come from the creative power that must somehow be found in the creation and evolution of the whole.

We search for the same things. To express oneself with others. To experience a strong connection with others. To receive and give love. To experience intimacy, unfoldment, pleasure and depth of meaning.

We are afraid of the same thing. Solitude. Condemnation. We are afraid of hurting and getting hurt.

When we are hurt without being comforted, we shut down. We may avoid new wounds, but we also lose the opportunity to experience the things we most long for. We may compensate on other fronts but eventually become impoverished.

When we hurt others without realizing it, we push others away and lose the same opportunity. In addition, we can somewhere in deep sabotage for ourselves. For the wrongdoing we on the surface barely acknowledge. Even then, we are deprived of the opportunity for the happy life.

Peronification of both problem complexes stands in the way of acknowledging and overcoming them. The personal shame over the vulnerability and the guilt for causing pain becomes too great. We'm shutting down. Shutting down becomes a half-guard against new wounds, a full guard against happiness - in the absence of a better word.

The general in the depths

But what if it was not so strange that you were hurt and hurt? What if what you experienced is less about you, about more the laws of nature to which our organism is subject?

The human body is a biological system. A kind of monkey costume. It operates according to the same principles and can be conditioned by the same processes.

Nature is constantly finding new ways to express itself and we also come with natural variation. Anyone with your genetic background and your learning history would be like you. As you have now become. Everyone in your shoes would make the same choices. You could not do anything to or from.

It was like it was because of something enormously much bigger than just you. You were woven into this and you did not even realize that was what happened.

Recapture of freedom?

With regained consciousness and understanding, rather than unconsciousness and condemnation, we can regain more freedom. The culturally learned part of our automated reactions, driven by fear, shame and guilt, can be learned.

Through deep bodily re-experiencing of our formative experiences, we can be conditioned. Our instinctive inevitable reactions do not go any further. The danger is over, self-protection is not needed. Our software gets a long awaited update.

Then we are left with the human condition. This is how evolution has shaped our interpretive apparatus for reality, the brain.

Our ordinary state of consciousness will continue to have reactivity in a traditional evolutionarily conditioned direction. It will continue to be primed by constant cultural imput. Input will control output. Then it is important to have daily practices that can counteract these pitfalls.

Mindfulness & Bodyfulness

A key to being able to alleviate both individual trauma and cultural conditioning lies is to train our observing capacity.

For we all have a consciousness with which we can observe what happens in the body. We can observe the ego, or our self.

We have a different instance in us than what we have been taught to think of as "ourselves." By strengthening this capacity for attention, we can create a distance to the body's reactivity.

We de-identify with the story we have told about our own person, and we de-identify with what is going on inside our monkey costume and to both "I" and "superego".

This capacity for consciousness is a general capacity. Unlike the stories about us and our bodies, which are all different, this mode of consciousness is exactly the same from person to person

Some, like Allan Watts, even claim that it is the same room we then enter.

A common human space of consciousness. Must believe how deep it goes.

Epilogue is coming. Stay tuned.