Imaginal mind, indigenous Self: Activating deep relationships with nature through dreams, poetry and pilgrimage
Presented by Professors Robert Romanyshyn (PhD, Clinical Psychology) and Veronica Goodchild (PhD, Analytical Psychology)
AN engaged seminar-Weekend workshop 10–11 november 2018
the heritage room, university college, college crescent, melbourne
The Call to Pilgrimage: Dreams, Walking, and our Sacred Bond with Nature – Toward the Embodiment of Jung's Synchronicity Principle
Veronica Goodchild PhD, Emeritus Professor (Pacifica Graduate Institute, USA)
In Songlines of the Soul, I explored Jung's synchronicity principle and its implications, how it led to the subtle imaginal worlds of soul in both personal and collective ways. Since writing that book, I have been led further, by dreams and grief about our environmental crises, towards walking as a meditation, a Pilgrimage, a ritual of recollection and a magical doorway through which we can glimpse the subtle world in this one and be taught about the Journey from our heads to our hearts. For me, this speaks to a need for a profound change in our worldview, already hinted at in Jung's alchemical studies and his relationship with Nobel Prize-winning physicist Wolfgang Pauli.
In the lecture, I’ll discuss some of these ideas and experiences. In the workshop, we will share experiences of these themes in conversation and experiential symbolic work. Please be prepared to share dreams and other experiences with the group.
Veronica Goodchild PhD is Professor Emerita at Pacifica Graduate Institute, where she taught Jungian and Imaginal Psychology, Depth Psychology and Alchemy, The Grail Myth, Depth Psychology and the Sacred, Jungian Psychology and Quantum Physics, Dreams, Soulful Research, and Clinical Case Colloquia. She has practiced as a Jungian psychotherapist for over 30 years and is an Affiliate Member of the Inter-Regional Society of Jungian Analysts. Dr Goodchild is a Pilgrimage Leader and author of Eros and Chaos: The Sacred Mysteries and Dark Shadows of Love (2001, 2008) and Songlines of the Soul: Pathways to a New Vision for a New Century (Foreword by Thomas Moore) (2012).
The Dreamer and the Poet
Robert D. Romanyshyn, Emeritus Professor of Clinical Psychology (Pacifica Graduate Institute, USA)
“We are such stuff as dreams are made on…”
Depth psychology began with the dream as the royal road to the unconscious. My workshop begins with the theme of the dream as a vocation, a calling to remember what has been forgotten and left by the side of the road. Drawing on Jung’s idea of the Psychoid Archetype, I suggest that at that level of the unconscious mind it is our collective broken connection with nature that now displays itself in the various ecological crises we face today.
To heal our broken connections with the natural world requires a recovery of the erotic ties between the sensuous body and the sensual world, a development of practices of embodied enactment. One of those practices that I have used in workshops focuses on the cultivation of a poetic sensibility and the power of the poem when it is read aloud to evoke images and memories that awaken the play of imagination. But to practice this craft, one must have a change of mood, and it is the poet and the dreamer who can lead us into the mood where the possibility of possibility runs counter to the mood disorder of much of our technological world view and much of psychology.
The experiential part of my presentation illustrates these points with an example of dream work and examples of poetry readings from some participants. Please bring a poem and a dream that has transformed the mood of your relation to yourself, others and nature. Together the two days will show the confluence of archetypal and mythic ways of knowing.
Robert D. Romanyshyn PhD is an Emeritus Professor of Clinical Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute, an Affiliate Member of the Inter-Regional Society of Jungian Analysts and a Fellow of the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture. He is the author of more than fifty articles in psychology, philosophy, literary and education journals, and of seven books, including The Wounded Researcher: Research with Soul in Mind (2007) and most recently The Frankenstein Prophecies: Who is the Monster?
The wounded researcher: Making a place for unconscious dynamics in the research process (2010) The Humanistic Psychologist 38(4), 275-304.
Abstract: I make the case that an approach to research that makes a place for the unconscious subjectivity of a researcher is the next logical step in a line of development, from psychology as natural science through it as a human and hermeneutic science, that has made a place for the subjectivity of the researcher in research. The process of research that arises from this approach begins with acknowledging that research is a vocation in which a work claims a researcher through his or her complex unconscious ties to the work as much as he or she consciously chooses it. I then describe the process of transference dialogues based on Jung's procedure of active imagination whereby a researcher differentiates his unconscious ties to a work from the work itself and becomes in that process as much an agent for the unfinished business in the work as its author. I conclude the article with a description of the method that flows organically from the approach and its process and that makes a place for a researcher's dreams, symptoms, synchronicities, and the functions of intuition and feeling, alongside the functions of thinking and sensation. Throughout the article, I give numerous examples from my graduate students and others who have taken up this approach in their work.
Making a place for unconscious factors in research (2013) Int J Multiple Research Approaches 7(3), 314-329.
Abstract: An imaginal approach to research is described in the context of three other research approaches in psychology. A supplement to these other approaches, an imaginal approach develops procedures modeled on Jung’s idea of active imagination for making the complex unconscious factors in the process of research as conscious as possible. The mythic pattern and archetypal dynamics of this approach are also discussed. This approach also challenges the priority of method over topic and develops an alchemical hermeneutic method as a variation of traditional hermeneutics. Implications of this approach for styles of psychological writing and for ethics are explored.
Keywords: imaginal, unconscious, active imagination, hermeneutics, ethics type, research method or approach
The Wounded Researcher: Research with Soul in Mind (2007)
"Soul work and academic research have been so split apart that both have been lamed-soul psychology without intellectual respectability and scholarly research utterly irrelevant to the soul's concerns. Romanyshyn's book not only follows from all his earlier diligent explorations in the Western history of soul, but also charts a course that joins the integrity of scholarly work with devotion to the soul's vital needs. New winds, new directions, new methods." -- James Hillman
Summary - Amazon/ Goodreads: What is the art of doing research that keeps soul in mind? The Wounded Researcher addresses (1) how an imaginal approach to the research process differentiates soul from the complex of psychology, (2) how re-search is a vocation in which a topic chooses a researcher through his or her complexes, (3) how engaging in transference dialogues helps to differentiate a researcher's complexes about the work from the soul of the work, (4) how an alchemical hermeneutic method opens a space for the soul of the work, (5) how this process and method have implications for how one writes down the soul of the work in writing up one's research and (6) how this imaginal approach to research that keeps soul in mind lays the foundations for an ethical epistemology.
Subjects - Trove: Psychology -- Research; Psychology -- Philosophy. Phenomenological psychology.; Soul; Depth (Philosophy); Psychology research; Research -- Psychological aspects; Psychoanalysis
Review - Amazon - by Randolph Severson: Robert Romanyshyn is a prolific writer of depth, quality, acuity and wonder. For many years -- with a series of classic articles, which appeared in The Journal of Phenomenology, and a first book on Technology as Symptom, published by the University of Texas Press, Romanyshyn has been in the forefront of the effort to humanize scientific research by returning it to its origin in what phenomenology calls the life world. In this way, he continues the tradition of Husserl, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty and van den Berg. But Romanyshyn's work has also come to reflect a decades long encounter with the Jungian tradition and the Archetypal Psychology of James Hillman, so that the soul has emerged as an 'ultimate concern' (Tillich) for him. In this challenging and absorbing book, he re-considers and re-grounds psychological research not in subjectivity but in the soul, a reality and concept, that transcends facile division into subject and object -- subject that studies; object that is studied. The growing acceptance of 'qualitative research' and 'narrative based evidence' in all disciplines owes a great deal to Romanyshyn's pioneering efforts and is both ratified and reinforced by this important and valuable book. Of vital interest and value to everyone engaged in any kind of psychological research.
About the Author - Amazon: Robert Romanyshyn PhD, is on the core faculty at Pacifica Graduate Institute and has been a practicing psychotherapist for over 25 years. An affiliate member of the Inter-Regional Society of Jungian Analysts, he is the author of the following books: Mirror and Metaphor: Images and Stories of Psychological Life, Technology as Symptom and Dream, The Soul in Grief: Love, Death and Transformation, Ways of the Heart: Essays Toward an Imaginal Psychology, as well as numerous articles and essays in the fields of phenomenology and archetypal psychology.
Ways of the Heart: Essays toward an Imaginal Psychology (2002)
Summary - APA PsycNET: Each of the essays of this book explores the intricacies of the currents of the heart, developing the vocabulary for soul's own voice rather than speaking for the soul that characterizes most psychology. The life of the soul in this book shines through the intersecting labyrinths of phenomenology, depth psychology, and poetry. Perhaps the most important of disciplines for this work is phenomenology because it assures that our author never falls into theorizing about the soul but is committed to letting the inner qualities of things of the world speak for themselves. The fundamental tenant of this book is that we are here to listen. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)
Subjects - Trove: Psychology -- Philosophy; Science -- Philosophy; Phenomenological psychology; Mass media -- Technological innovations; Mass media -- Social aspects; Psychology - Research & Methodology; Preface by Robert Sardello.
Amazon - by R. Sandford - Thought-provoking and soul-stirring: An excellent collection of essays showing a progression of Romanyshyn's thought - the deepening of themes that work there way through all his work. A fascinating synthesis of VandenBerg's metabletic approach to understanding the changing nature of human consciousness, Jungian psychology, Bachelard's work on reverie, and a poetic sensibility that leaves us open to being deeply affected by the world in which we live. Having studied with Romanyshyn, I can heartily recommend this as a primer to his work that will stir your imagination.
The Soul in Grief: Love Death and Transformation (1999)
Summary - Goodreads: When we encounter real tragedy in our lives that throws us into grieving, few of us find the way to deepen our mourning and let it radically reform us. The Soul in Grief asks us to put aside all psychological explanations and concentrate on discovering the loving embrace offered by the soul of the world.
Subjects - Trove: Grief; Bereavement -- Psychological aspects; Death -- Psychological aspects; Jungian psychology.
Contents - Trove: Foreword / Thomas Moore
PART I: A Journey Without Maps
Ch. 1. Songs of a Gypsy
PART II: Grief, Mourning and Melancholy
Ch. 2. Dust and Dreams: Reveries at the Heart of Grief
Ch. 3. Grief and Mourning: The Greening of the Soul
Ch. 4. Mourning and Melancholy: The Orphan and the Angel
PART III: Lyrical Improvisations in Celebration of the World
Ch. 5. The Spider's Web, the Bird's Song, and the Ballet of the Whale
Ch. 6. In the Early Morning of the World
Ch. 7. Under the Starry Night Sky
"Robert is introducing us to a new way of imagination that has direct relevance to our everyday situation, especially to its strong emotions and scarcity of meaning... it is a form of education of the deepest sort, the kind that happens when we are forced to find a way to live in the midst of grief." -- From the Foreword, by Thomas Moore
"The Soul in Grief shows how moments of grief can help us move beyond false constructs of the ego... it expands our idea of psychology to situate life and the soul within the greater fabric of the living universe." -- David Fideler, editor of Alexandria: A Journal of Cosmology, Philosophy, Myth and Culture
"In this quiet book of reflection, the author beckons the reader to do the psychological work grief demands: letting go of previous attitudes and assumptions, giving up control of experience and emotions, and giving in to the soul's impetus toward healing itself." -- Jennifer Block
Janus Head - by Victor Barbetti - As I recall the first time I read Robert Romanyshyn's The Soul in Grief, a veil of sadness passes over me. This poignant book deeply affected me, not only because Romanyshyn's gentle and poetic style envelops one with feeling, but because the subject of the book itself is intimately, honestly, and courageously laid out before the reader. The Soul in Grief chronicles the death of Romanyshyn's wife, Janet, and his subsequent journey into the depths of grief and mourning.
My first encounter with Professor Romanyshyn was in 1990 as an undergraduate student at the University of Dallas. I was able fortunately to take a course from him, one year before he departed this school at which he had taught at for over 20 years to become part of the faculty at Pacifica Graduate Institute in California. I remember fondly the atmosphere of his classroom: a circular room, with large wooden tables and chairs forming a circle in the middle of the brick and stone room. Each morning Professor Romanyshyn entered the circle to share with us the story of phenomenological and depth psychology, taking us through each perspective with the patience and wisdom of a well seasoned and experienced guide. My own thinking and teaching styles have been profoundly influenced by Professor Romanyshyn's teaching and writings.
And the reader of The Soul in Grief will no doubt also be transformed by Romanyshyn's story. I use the word "story" because, as those who are familiar with his earlier works Psychological Life and Technology as Symptom and Dream already know, Romanyshyn considers his craft a "story telling," because it is within story that we recognize ourselves and the contextual forms in which we participate, the roles to which life calls us, and are thus able to ruminate and to dream, allowing experience to transform us. Within the depths of grief and mourning, then, it is story that provides a structure and guidance necessary to traverse the arduous and oftimes seemingly insurmountable barriers that such inveterate sadnesses generate.
Romanyshyn approaches grieving not as process with "cause and effect" symptoms, but as a nonlinear journey into the depths of the soul. As Thomas Moore writes in the book's preface, "Don't try to understand, but do try to accept all the many invitations presented here for reverie and reflection. This is not a book of information; it is a book of emotional and imaginal places." Such is the topography of Romanyshyn's story, and its uncertainties and lack of "well-intended" prescriptions are precisely what open up the possibility for us to dwell within its tale.
"In these reveries of mourning, I do not offer a psychology of grief. Rather, I offer something closer to a poetics of the elemental forces of life which lie beyond psychology." Romanyshyn reveals the point at which psychology, as a scientific enterprise, loses its ability to explain and control. Relating his trials to us, he recounts the desperation to know the reasons "why," the exact medical cause of his wife's death. But in the obsession to know definite answers, he found himself living in medical charts, slips of paper, scientific reports that could not impart the exquisite detail and warmth of body, of memory. Opening himself to the world again, he shares with us a strange, human land that requires us to forfeit our rational explanations.
Romanyshyn imparts many personal revelations to the reader in this book, such as his thoughts on melancholy ("I believe that melancholy is a way the soul deepens mind and seeks to restore to personal life, its collective and transpersonal dimensions"); on reverie ("Reverie is a surrender of the desire to know things so that we might once again, at least for a moment, be with them"); and on death (". . . I saw how quickly the breath of death can blow apart the flimsy shelters of security we build for ourselves against the anxiety of losing what we love and what we have").
The Soul in Grief is a valuable resource to all who seek a phenomenology of the grieving journey. Personally, I used this text to supplement the death and dying portion of an adult development psychology course I taught recently. My students found Romanyshyn's text to be not only restorative, but illuminating as well. The students' class discussions confirmed my own suspicions: Romanyshyn's work provides a unique approach that is desperately needed in an era in which the art of languaging often takes second place to a language made sterile by an emphasis on precision and correctness.
But Romanshyn's own words, a beautiful and humble gift to the world of human experience, will best describe to you the pull of the mystery in the journey that lead him to write this book: "So let all this be as it was, and let it all be as it is: the record of one witness whose grief and mourning shattered a human mind and opened an archaic, prehuman world where, by grace and love, it was healed."
Amazon - by Barbara Annan, PhD - An intimate rendering of grief's transformative process: Robert Romanyshyn's new book, The Soul in Grief, is a sensitive invitation to enter into a "reverie" of the rhythms of mourning. The work is a thoughtful testimony and poetic meditation created out of the author's painful and profoundly felt loss of his wife. He shares moving, intimate descriptions of the barrenness and the mystical moments of his grieving, leading the reader towards his transformative discovery of an unsuspected, healing balm contained in the grief process itself. The Soul in Grief documents a pilgrim's journey towards meaning in the experience of devastating loss. I am grateful to have this book available to recommend and give to friends who are grieving losses from the past as well as a recent death.
Amazon - by Craig Chalquist, PhD - A soulful work by a wonderful man: This book invites the reader into the imaginal space opened up by grief. It is a space we tend to fear and therefore neglect in our mechanized, electronicized, and tremendously busy culture... one reason we have so much unfinished emotional business. Dr. Romanyshyn's book reminds us that melancholy can be a path to greater self-fulfillment -- for as Viktor Frankl pointed out, there are values known only to those with the courage to suffer well. Highly recommended.
Amazon - by Roberto Lima Netto, author of The Jungian Bible - A story of grief, but with hope: The book by Robert Romanyshyn is a poem on grief. The sudden death of his wife threw the author in a depression that he managed to overcome in a poetic way. But it was not an easy task. It took months. When you are grieving, the normal reaction from your friends is to try to cheer you up. Unfortunately, this does not work. You have to live through your grief to the full, like Roberto did, and, as a result, awake stronger to continue your life. I recommend the book not only to the ones that are grieving, but to anyone that wants to understand what grief is, and prepare oneself to the vagaries of life.
Technology as Symptom and Dream (1989)
Summary - Booktopia: Robert Romanyshyn's latest book shows how the development of linear perspective vision has altered our relationship with the world and led to our increasing alienation. The development of linear perspective in the 15th century represented a radical transformation in the European's sense of the world, the body and the self. Robert Romanyshyn's latest book examines the claim that the development of linear perspective vision was and is indispensable to the emergence of our technological world. It does so by telling the story of how an artistic technique has become a cultural habit of mind.
Subjects - Trove: Technology -- Philosophy; Technology -- Psychological aspects; Technologie -- Philosophie. Technologie -- Aspect psychologique; Technology & Engineering -- General; Technikphilosophie; Technik; Psychologie; Phenomenological psychology
Contents - Trove:
Prologue: Address to the reader
Ch 1. Lift-off: we are all astronauts
Ch 2. The window and the camera
Ch 3. Self as spectator; Body as specimen
Ch 4. The abandoned body and its shadows
Ch 5. World as spectacle
Ch 6. Re-entry: paths of return
Notes; Bibliography; Index
"There is a specificity and tightness . . . that is compelling . . . an excellent complement to Jung's historical reflections and alchemical studies." -- Harvest
"You have, in my opinion, produced one of the wisest and most compellingly urgent books I have encountered in a long while. Thank you for this book." -- Alice Jardine, Department of Romance Language and Literature, Harvard University
"The cast of characters assembled in Romanyshyn's tale -- from things such as the telescope, television, and the telephone, to ideas like the vanishing and the distance points, to figures such as Brunelleschi and Alberti, Galileo and Harvey, Mesmer and Freud -- is as impressive as the story he tells is persuasive. The author asks us to take nothing on his word but deftly directs us to our own images on art and in life, in history and in the present day." -- The Humanistic Psychologist, Autumn 1990
" . . a rare achievement." -- Times Literary Supplement, July 1990
" . . any psychology that would be a psychology of culture must include an appraisal of technology as a psychological event. This is precisely what Romanyshyn has done by seeing technology as both symptom and dream in this remarkable work." -- Temenos
"I’ll be bold and rank this as an essential book. As much a hidden history of the Cartesian split between mind and body, self and world, as it is a tale of technology’s significance in modern history, I can’t recommend it highly enough to anyone interested in the potentially apocalyptic implications of our alienation from embodiment and lived experience." -- Gyrus
Amazon - by Craig Chalquist, PhD - A daring re-visioning of technology: ...in its numinous potential, both dark and bright. Dr. Romanyshyn invites the reader to see the sense in the symptom of what we do with our linear-perspectival progress through time...and what it does to us. Highly recommended.
Amazon - by Victor Barbetti - Romanyshyn calls us to re-member many things: In Technology as Symptom and Dream, Romanyshyn discovers that with the 'invention' of linear perspective vision came many changes in who we imagine ourselves to be. The mathematization of the world provided a new kind of freedom for (literally) seeing the world differently. The subject of the artist in paintings and the artist became broken up, or fragmented, through the process of using a veil based on a geometric understanding of space. Within that space one can see how the 'depth' of things changed, from a depth of levels to a depth of linear measurement. It is this frame that makes possible the anatomical view of the body, and it is the anatomical view that gives rise to the corpse, or what Romanyshyn calls the 'anatomical body' of science. We thus have a psychological and cultural division between the body as corpse and what Romanyshyn calls the 'pantomimic' body, or what phenomenology distinguishes as the 'lived body' of experience.
Throughout the last 500 years we have seen these two possibilities manifest themselves in our culture. Romanyshyn has shown us that when our culture place too much of an emphasis on just one aspect of the body, certain aspects of the other (the pantomimic) show through in a not so glorious fashion. So we can understand Romanyshyn's discussion of the shadow side of the anatomical body (the witch, the madman, the monster, the anorexic) as a way of telling us what's wrong and as a remembrance for how to make things right. The pantomimic body, as a shadow of the anatomical body, reminds us that there are different ways of seeing the world, and that certain ways we think are the best (e.g. our technological worldview) come to us with a very expensive price tag.
Amazon - by Bela Johnson - A Must Read for the 21st Century: This "jumped off the shelf" for me years ago at a college library, and I couldn't believe my good fortune. Though an academic, Romanyshyn, a man I later interviewed on radio, is one of the most profound thinkers and feelers of our time. He's a contemporary phenomenologist, a soulful writer. Check out The Soul in Grief if this one seems too heady for you. It was written after his beloved wife's untimely death. But honestly, I feel Technology as Symptom and Dream is approachable to anyone with interest in discovering more about how westerners have sacrificed a certain humanity in the face of technology ... If we can understand that our cultural body/mind disconnect began with the advent of linear perspective in art (leading us to observe rather than to flower into being) and the anatomical perspective in western medicine (leading us to experience the body as an assemblage of parts instead of an integrated whole), we can individually begin to reconnect ourselves back to the earth and to our bodies - begin to live more intuitively and soulfully in the cosmos. Though technical in nature, this book enthralled me, and remains one of the best books on my shelves.
Leaning Toward the Poet: Eavesdropping on the Poetry of Everyday Life (2014)
Summary - Google Books: In Leaning toward the Poet: Eavesdropping on the Poetry of Everyday Life, Robert Romanyshyn writes in a poetic style about the splendor and simplicity of life. From the light on a summer morning to the appeal of an empty bench, he talks about the miracle of the mundane moments in life that are present, for example, in a spider's web or a smile on the face of a stranger. In an age of information overload and diminishing time spent on the simple things in life, Leaning toward the Poet is an invitation to slow down and pause to attend to those occasions when memory and imagination lead one to unexpected occurrences that make us think about and appreciate what is happening around us. A memoir written by a psychologist, Leaning Toward the Poet awakens us to the poetic qualities of everyday life. Its words and images feel like a homecoming.
In Memoriam: 1914 – 2014
On a darkening plane the dead are weeping.
They do not weep for us who,
deafened by the drums of war – again –,
stumble blindly into another dark night.
The dead weep for each other.
They weep for all who died
at Verdun,Passchendaele, the Somme,
for those at Gallipoli and Tannenberg,
for all who, on command, went over the top,
to be cut in half by the new weapons of war,
for all who gasped for breath in the trenches,
those slaughter houses of the soul,
for all those in that first world war,
the war that was to end all wars.
They weep with the sons and grandsons and great grandsons
who have followed them in the unholy sacrifice of blood.
In pale grey light
the generations of the dead are rising from their graves
throughout eastern Europe and the Balkans,
throughout the Middle East,
in Germany and France,
in Russia and England,
and the United States.
Shrouded in morning mist,
wrapped in their tattered and torn tunics,
their lament for each other fading,
they shuffle again toward oblivion.
In the graves where they lie un-remembered and un-mourned
we keep killing the dead. (Robert Romanyshyn, 2014)
In this book, Romanyshyn makes an important contribution to humanistic psychology by demonstrating that poetic language is the native tongue of the soul. In this vibrant book of words oriented to that gap (which is also a bridge) between poetry and speech of psyche, this book passionately argues for a psychology that explores what it is to be human in our most creative embrace of words. Hence, the book is groundbreaking in looking deeply into what a poetic basis to the soul really entails. In this book, Romanyshyn leans toward the poet as a way of freeing psyche from the scientific literalism beloved by some psychologists. This book is an invitation to follow the byways of psychology to dance to the poetry of the soul. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)
Source: Rowland, S. (2015). Review of Leaning toward the poet; Eavesdropping on the poetry of everyday life. [Review of the book Leaning toward the poet; eavesdropping on the poetry of everyday life. R. Romanyshyn]. The Humanistic Psychologist, 43(4), 412-414. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08873267.2015.1047937
Amazon - by Bryan Reinhard: Calling Keats, Neruda, Rilke and even Eliot to guide his journey, Robert Romanyshyn in his Leaning Toward the Poet, brings us face to face with a man marching to a “tune hardly anyone hears.” A man who sees the “splendor in the simple,” encouraging us “to regard the ordinary, to look at it again, for a second time,” … to see but for a moment when the “ordinary becomes extraordinary.” Dr. Romanyshyn delves into poetics to show us those fleeting moments “between the gap”, the “vague memories” of the forgotten world. This is a book not to be missed and discarded for it brings into focus the occurrences that remind us of both of the world’s being and our own humanity.
Amazon - Mary - Romanyshyn Succeeds in Creating a Tender Hospitality: In Robert Romanyshyn's Leaning Toward the Poet: Eavesdropping on the Poetry of Everyday Life, quiet gifts of longing and remembering float elusively from page to page. Romanyshyn's poetic images, both offerings and seductions, beckon the reader to bear witness to the elegance of the ordinary. Be prepared to enter an enchanted domain in which a hummingbird flits excitedly at the tease that she may become the recipient of a dream intimately shared. Or sadly, be one with a trapped monarch, Romanyshyn's "winged king, an obligation to the dark lord of the underworld." In this worthy collection of poetry by a renowned psychologist, both poet and readers participate in the creation of a tender hospitality. Moments that are too often forgotten are re-imagined and enlivened by the act of bearing witness. For readers who have found a homeplace in Bachelard's poetics of reverie or Oliver's quiet celebration of the natural world, this is your book. For those drawn to the elusive and sometimes dark world of soul, or longing for the cultivation of a poetic sensibility toward life's experience, then Romanyshyn's eavesdropping provides a radiant portal. This book will delight.
Amazon - by Randolph Severson - Very highly recommended: This book is a marvel -- lyrical, touching, inviting, diaphanously expressive of the mysteries and miracles of everyday life. Near the end of his long and prolific career, the author is perhaps the world's foremost contemporary phenomenological psychologist. And Leaning Toward the Poet is a renewing of psychology as a disciplined, sensitive, subtly nuanced wonder-filled speech of the soul about the lebenswelt, the life-world that surrounds and sensuously envelops it. Students of the later Heidegger, of Merleau-Ponty's The Visible and the Invisible, of the Dutch phenomenologist Jan van den Berg, the poetry of Rilke and the painting of Cezanne will be especially welcoming and appreciative of this luminous capstone work. Very highly recommended.
Forthcoming: The Frankenstein Prophecies: Who is the Monster?
The Frankenstein Prophecies focuses on how the monsters we create and then abandon and exile to the margins of consciousness linger on an individual level and haunt our dreams and symptoms that are generally dismissed as only psychological, and on a collective level as crises that spur us into action that ignores psychological reflection. This book explores how questions that are ironic open a conscious psychological way to attend to the monster on the margins. Applied to eight prophetic themes in Mary Shelley's book, such questions stop one in one's tracks and open one to wonder about what is unsaid in what Victor Frankenstein says about his work and which is carried by the monster on the margins waiting to tell his side of the tale.
The full Title Page, abbreviated Table of Contents and the Introduction are available in Works in Progress on my website - RobertRomanyshyn.com:
The Frankenstein Prophecies: The Monster’s Tale
Eight Questions and Replies
Question 1 Resurrecting the Dead: Is Mary Shelley’s Story a Prophecy of the Dangers of Acting as Gods?
Question 2 The Melting Polar Ice: Is Mary Shelley’s Story a Prophecy of the Dying of Nature?
Question 3 The Monster’s Body :Is Mary Shelley’s Story a Prophecy of the Monster’s Descendants?
Question 4 Out of Africa to the Moon: Is Mary Shelley’s Story a Prophecy of Creating a New Species of Humankind?
Question 5 From Astronauts to Angels in Clouds: Is Mary Shelley’s Story a Prophecy of the Last Generations of Humankind?
Question 6 WWW: Adrift in the Digital World: Is Mary Shelley’s Story a Prophecy of Being Homeless in a Wired, Webbed World?
Question 7 Who is the Monster? Is Mary Shelley’s Story a Prophecy of a Radical Ethics?
Question 8 Are there Seeds of Hope in Mary Shelley’s Story?
Related event - Hampstead, 2014: Prof. Robert Romanyshyn: The Frankenstein Prophecies: Reflections on the Shadow Elements in Culture, by Richard Irwin Published 31st July 2016 (The Scientific & Medical Network: Exploring and expanding the frontiers of science, medicine and spirituality)
According to Mary Shelley the idea for her story came to her in a waking dream. In her waking dream, Victor Frankenstein appears as a man of titanic ambitions whose over weaning pride leads him to take on the mantle of being a god who will engineer a second creation and who then abandons what he has made because his creature does not fit his ideal. Her story is the tale of a dispassionate mind unhinged from nature that disregards the feminine in the work of creation. It is a prophetic tale, which, foreshadowing a type of thinking that characterises our scientific- technological worldview, endures in the cultural imagination of our time.
Within the context of some of the crises created by our scientific-technological way of thinking, The Frankenstein Prophecies examine the darker sides of Mary Shelley’s waking dream from the point of view of Victor Frankenstein’s creation, the Creature who has no name. Throughout the story, Victor Frankenstein consistently calls him Devil, Demon, Monster. Telling the story from the Creature’s point of view raises the primary question: Who, in fact, is the Monster?
Robert D. Romanyshyn PhD is a teacher, writer, and psychotherapist trained in phenomenology and Jungian psychology. An Affiliate Member of the Inter-Regional Society of Jungian Analysts, he is a senior core faculty member in the Depth Psychotherapy Program at Pacifica Graduate Institute. Author of six books, including The Wounded Researcher (2007), over forty book chapters, and numerous journal articles, he has given keynote addresses at international conferences, and presented lectures and directed workshops at universities and professional societies in the U.S., Canada, Europe, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand.
Songlines of the Soul: Pathways to a New Vision for a New Century (Foreword by Thomas Moore) (2012)
Summary - Trove: Songlines of the Soul proposes a new paradigm of reality, a new worldview. The signatures of this new reality are arising both in our own experiences and all around us if only we can stretch wide our stubbornly held perceptions of what is "reality"
Summary - Amazon: The title for this book comes from the ancient Aboriginal concept of "song lines" --pathways to another world reached through dreamtime and visionary insight, and encounters with the unknown realm of experience.
Veronica Goodchild addresses how dreams, synchronicities, UFO/ET encounters, Crop Circle mysteries, and NDEs all point to the new unfolding vision of reality. She draws on ancient mystery traditions to explore how this metamorphosis is already reflected cross-culturally in Hopi, Aztec, Mayan, Hindu, Tibetan, Maori, Zulu, Dogon, and Egyptian cultures.
Songlines of the Soul proposes a new paradigm of reality, a new worldview. The signatures of this new reality are arising both in our own experiences and all around us if only we can stretch wide our stubbornly held perceptions of what is "reality." As we stand at a crucial turning point in our human history, this book offers hope, a call to awaken and expand our perceptions of the fundamental principles that orchestrate reality.
In an age when the answers offered by governments and traditional religion are no longer sufficient, the quest for meaning must -- as it always has in the past -- arise first through visions, dreams, and journeys to other dimensions of consciousness.
Subjects - Trove: Parapsychology; Reality -- Psychological aspects; Spirituality; BODY, MIND & SPIRIT -- Healing -- General.
Contents - Trove:
PART I: An Introduction to the Subtle Body and Subtle Worlds
Ch. 1 The Return of the Mysteries
My Dream of Suhrawardi
Subtle Worlds and Imagination: The Work of Henri Corbin
Songlines and the Call of the Soul: The Green Lady
Epiphanies of the Imaginal World in the Work of Jung
The Psychoid Archetype
Other Epiphanies of the Imaginal World in Our Time
The Grail Myth
Ch. 2 Anomalous Experiences and the Subtle World
Individuation as Initiation toward the Creation of a Subtle Body
Other Sightings of the Subtle Body
Subtle Body and Subtle Worlds
The Need for Initiation
Civilization in Transition
Anomalous Experiences and A Modern Myth
Ch. 3 The Mystical Traditions and Jung's Subtle Imaginal World
The Mystical Traditions
Contemporary Forms of Mysticism
Jung's "Reality of the Psyche"
Jung's Near-Death Vision
Jung's Ravenna Vision
Contents note continued: Jung's Alchemical Vision of Christ
PART II: Two Synchronicity: Doorways to the Deep Mysteries of the Psyche
Ch. 4 Synchronicity & the Sounds of Silence
Jung's Experiences of Synchronicity
Synchronicity: Four Essential Features
The Deep Mysteries of the Psyche
The Great Awakening
A New Archetypal Constellation: The Coniunctio, Union of Opposites, and the Figure of Eros/ophia
PART III: A New Emerging Myth: UFOs and Crop Circles
Ch. 5 UFOs, Collective Synchronicities, and Transformation
Richard Leviton's Visionary Experience
Dr. Steven Greer's Close Encounter
Jung and UFOs as Collective Synchronicities
UFOs and Cultural-Historical Considerations
"Flying Saucers" and Jung's Doubt
UFOs and Feminine Mandala Symbols of the Self
UFOs as the New "Annunciation"
The Immortal Guides of the Soul
UFO Encounters and Initiation
Individual vs. Collective Synchronicities and the New Myth
Contents note continued: UFO Encounters, Cosmic Consciousness and the Heart: Orfeo Angelucci's Story
The Subtle Body as a New Creation in the New Myth
Ch. 6 Crop Circles: Star Codes/arth Dreams
Subtle Energies and Stars
Crop Circles and the Sacred
Epiphanies of Beauty and the Presence of the Goddess: Aphrodite/enus
Demeter the Corn Mother and Persephone the Corn Maiden
The Mystery of Wheat
Crop Circles and the Flower of Life
Crop Circles and the Imaginal Landscape of the Soul
Crop Circles and Inter-dimensional Dialogue
Crop Circles and Sacred Geometry: The Mystery of Number
Crop Circles and Sound
Crop Circle Dreams and the Great Awakening
A Great Mystery
Ch. 7 A New Vision: As Above So Below
PART IV: Mystical Cities and Healing Sanctuaries
Ch. 8 Prelude to the Journey to the Other World
Ch. 9 Mystical Cities and Musical Notes
Mystical Cities and the Features of Subtle Geography
Contents note continued: Olmo Lungring
Moon or Soma Temples
Morphic Fields and Waving Trees
Ch. 10 Mystical Cities, the Historical Record and Some Recent Accounts
Christine de Pizan and the City of Ladies
The Invisible College as a Mystical Domain
Emanuel Swedenborg's Accounts of Mystical Cities
Contemporary Accounts of Mystical or Luminous Cities
Olga Kharitidi and Belovodia (Shambhala)
A Journey to a Universe of Light
NDEers Travels to the Luminous Cities
UFO Encounters and Mystical Cities
Ch. 11 Missing Time and Mystical Cities
The Myth of Er
Mellen-Thomas Benedict's After-Death Experience
The Song of the Pearl
The Mysteries or a Close Encounter
Lumen Naturae, Light of Nature
Missing Time and Eros Awareness
"The Shift You Are Realizing Is Happening to Many Others on Earth"
Ch. 12 Healing Sanctuaries and Hissing Snakes
Contents note continued: New Features of Consciousness in the Age of Aquarius
Newgrange: A Story of Healing
The Ancient Greek Healing Sanctuaries
Ch. 13 Eros Consciousness, Water, and the Moon: Songlines & the Return of the Cosmic Soul
The Moon and Water
The Moon and the Waters of Life
The Moon and Snakes
The Nectar of the Moon: Waters of Immortality
The Lunar Waters of Initiation
Water, Music, and the Songlines of the Soul
Songlines and the Return of the Cosmic Soul
Coda: Singing Your Song
Sabbatical Homes: Songlines of the Soul proposes a new paradigm of reality, a new worldview. The signatures of this new reality are arising both in our own experiences and all around us if only we can stretch wide our stubbornly held perceptions of what is “reality.” As we stand at a crucial turning point in our human history, this book offers hope, a call to awaken and expand our perceptions of the fundamental principles that orchestrate reality.
In an age when the answers offered by governments and traditional religion are no longer sufficient, the quest for meaning must – as it always has in the past – arise first through visions, dreams, and journeys to other dimensions of consciousness.
Amazon - Mary Stowell: Integrity with difficult subject matter. This carefully researched book is full of unexpected treasures. The subject matter is challenging; UFO's, crop circles, near death experiences, and many synchronicities. The author has situated these experiences in the context of Jungian psychology, and extended the more traditional psychological explanations. Some of these Jungian connections were easier to follow than others. What shines through, however, is the integrity of the author in writing about these anomalous experiences. She connects her account to those of others from different cultures, different times, different perspectives. ... At times the language used seemed to impede the flow, but at other times it was very easy to follow. There are many gems in this book, some cut and polished and some still in the rough, but overall I recommend this book for its courage, integrity, and a view of how difficult it is to hold these unusual experiences. The author offers real hope of transformation from our too materialistic worldview back to, and forward to, a worldview that honors life.
Amazon - Mary: A Timely Read for the 21st Century. Goodchild's book brings groundbreaking scholarship and excellent writing to an idea whose time has come. With Songlines of the Soul Goodchild carefully weaves a story that has been quietly evolving over time, a story about a reality and consciousness that is beyond common experience. She provides material that allows her readers to view unusual (anomalous) experiences with an open mind and heart. In a most intelligent and serious writer's voice, she invites her readers to consider that others might exist, perhaps in unknown realms and are messaging those of us who can hear. With clarity and courage she wonders out loud if the purpose of these messages, these songlines, is that we might become more fully connected and more open to love.
Eros and Chaos: The Sacred Mysteries and Dark Shadows of Love (2001, 2008)
Summary - Trove: A provocative book that reminds us that our soul's primary longing is for love and then explores that longing. Goodchild explains that our most important task is the growth of our consciousness and that this cannot be accomplished apart from an awareness of the complexities of love and its shadows. It takes the us into that domain where eros' arrows thrust us into those shadowy depths where our keenest vulnerabilities and woundings--and our deepest imaginings and longings-are hidden.
Series: Jung on the Hudson book series Subjects - Trove: Love; Jungian psychology
Contents - Trove:
Ch 1: Chaos and Order: Challenging a Familiar Paradigm
Chaos/ros: Love and Its Shadows
Ch 2: Chaos and Eros: The Mysteries and Shadows of Love
Chaos and the Primacy of Order
Chaos and Creation
Chaos and Eros
Hidden Gold: Chaos and Eros in Alchemy
The Mysteries and Shadows of Love
Ch 3: Love's Suffering: The Orphan as Image of Abandonment
The Orphan and the Stone: Return
Ch 4: The Other Women: Chaos and Clitoral Consciousness
The Marginalized Feminine and Suppression of Life
Feminine Images of Chaos/ros
The Complex Range of Clitoral Consciousness
From Early Lack to Continuing Loss
New Ways of Loving
Ch 5: Divine and Chthonic Love: The Chaotic and Numinous in Depth Psychotherapy
The Numinous Verticality of Chaos and Eros in Psychotherapy
Death of a Princess - Grief of a World
Chapter 6: Love and Vocation: Being Addressed by Voices of the Unseen World
Synchronicity as a Field of Love
UFOs and Angels: The Soul of the World
Light Out of Darkness: The Lumen Naturae
Galaxy, Gaia, G-spot! Cosmos, Earth, Human!
Epilogue: A Parting Image
Amazon - Craig Chalquist, PhD (author of Terrapsychology and Deep California) - A Gospel of Chaos and Love: About a year ago I was present to hear Dr. Goodchild's response to a classmate's question about whether love is "only projection," an erotic glow we put into the person we fall for. We had just had a class in psychoanalysis, a useful but highly reductive set of theories and therapies. Although I can't repeat the response here, much as I'd like to, it was splendidly animated, asking in essence: if love is all projection, what does that say about the beloved -- Her feelings, Her reality?
Although you can't know the St. Elmo's Fire that cavorts from the very windows wherever Dr. Goodchild speaks unless you're there to have your hair raised by it, the passion behind it lights this fine book of hers, in which Sekmet and Shakti, angels and aliens rise like currents of celestial fire to charge the dance of Chaos and Eros, the mythic pair so often pushed off the dance floor by Chaos and Order or just Order, finally a solo in the positivist pageants of our time, so addicted are we to programs, lists, and control, we heirs to Apollo and Rome.
And so the Chaos we try to arrange out of our lives and relationships (thereby depotentiating both) breaks in again in unexpected places, angered at going unrecognized, eager to initiate us into a richer and more genuine -- and more tumultuous -- kind of Eros than we're used to. For there's no such thing as a safe love, or a truly orderly vocation. Would we want them if there could be?
Some of my classmates question whether depth-related learnings are still relevant, what with falling bombs, terrorist attacks, a literal anthrax to match the psychic poisoning of our era. In and below such surface-level cataclysms and the pain they involve Dr. Goodchild reads the re-emergence of a long-repressed cosmological love intimately bound up with everything else we've managed to marginalize: the fleshly, the feminine, the esoteric, the earthly, the imaginal. To quote from the book:
"Could it be that the chaos of our world, losing its way in breakdowns on all levels from the personal to the political, from the cultural to the geophysical, signals that moment of deadly peril where collective consciousness seeks its own destruction and dissolution, in order to birth a relation to this complex Mystery, a connection that we can only approach, that we can only forge, with an attitude born of a willingness to suffer, and of a love that can only emerge from our grief?"
Obviously, this kind of love has nothing to do with a manically optimistic "everything is love, man"; its wellsprings are deeper and its cost far higher than anything rainbow stickers and positive affirmations could tap.
"Love is a paradox and evokes all our shadows. The claim in this book is that it is just this great undoing, this peculiar darkened illumination, that is part of love's great gift to us."
It is a poetic, multidisciplinary work in which the author bravely brings in some of her own collisions and learnings with the lively pair mentioned in its title; reading it reminded me that the best books are not so much put together as given birth.
"Whatever is done with love," Nietzsche wrote in a fine passage, "always occurs beyond good and evil." (p.s. It bears mentioning that as I wrote this review, a statue of Ishtar was being unearthed in Iraq.)
Testimonials on veronicagoodchild.com:
“This book grows out of a fully embodied, compelling, passionate, profoundly personal, richly imagined, reflective and visionary engagement with its theme, the inescapable connection between Eros and Chaos, love and its wounds, both given and received. Veronica Goodchild has learned that these wounds, painful and unwelcome as they may be, can nevertheless be what opens us to the divine.” – Christine Downing, author of The Goddess and The Long Journey Home and many other writings.
“With threads of Jungian thought, mythology, poetry, and unique personal experiences, Veronica Goodchild weaves an exploration into the interrelated dynamics of Eros and Chaos, not only in the universe, but in one’s personal psychology – a microcosm within a macrocosm. An engaging book!” – Nancy Qualls-Corbett, Jungian Analyst and author of The Sacred Prostitute.
“Veronica Goodchild honors the mystery of dream-vision and synchronicity. She explores the fierce truth of how the shadow side of Eros refreshes soul-growth and, like a Renaissance alchemist, she calls for an inner science and art equal to the wonder and wildness of experience. I feel a profound creative urgency here.” – Coleman Barks, author of The Soul of Rumi and many other works.