“I regard it as the noblest task of psychotherapy in our times to untiringly serve the personal growth of the individual”.
As practicing professional I have never stopped studying and learning. That leads me to ever-deepening understanding what psychotherapy is. As I grow older, the more beauty I discover in this art. “Psychology” for me is not only my job, but a way of being. I came to understand that I live in a constant marvel, since I will never be able to “know” what psyche is. The object of its observation is inevitably the subject itself, and for this very reason we will never have the privilege to call psychology a pure science. It will have to remain at the same time an art. That is the charm what attracts me to psychotherapy so much. Psyche for me is not only the “unknowable” but also the deepest abyss where all mysteries of existence dwell. It is life per se; a source of spirituality, healing and a purpose of our life.
Even though we will never be able to “know” psyche as such, it doesn’t mean that we do not have a duty to attempt to know what we can. Ego being just a small island in the infinite ocean, stands in front of lifelong task: to understand and to truly experience the language of its Great Mother – Unconscious – which talks to “it” if it is to make a progress in its growth (individuation). We can say that opening one’s ears to her whisper corresponds to the healing process that is spiritual awakening. Only through the dialogue a harmony can be established. When providing therapy to my clients I do keep this in my mind.
My approach can be easily called integrative: oriented towards promoting wholeness. Not perfection though, because there is a great deal of imperfectness and shadow one has to accept and consciously realize in order to be healthy: whole. Health therefore does not mean only the freedom from symptoms, but conscious realization of the unity of life’s opposites. And what does that mean? “…let no day pass without humbly remembering that everything has still to be learned,” to use Jung’s quote answering the question.
And how do I work? Unfortunately the way I work cannot be explained by words it could only be experienced. Situation between the therapist and client is unique and individual as characteristic for every human relationship; the difference is that this time continuing light of consciousness is required. The Healing comes out of responsible and conscious work on both sides. But the healing itself always comes from deep center of our being called the Self. I learn over and over that there is natural self-healing potential in every human psyche. Techniques I use are designed to utilize this energy. As body is endowed with immunity system, the psyche has inherited equilibrium-seeking principle within. The will has only relative power, but it can certainly be efficient in opening the door through which healing can flow. Psychotherapy can be viewed as the Work of unlocking and opening these doors.
Psychotherapy is also kind of a detective work. It can take some time before core of the problem is detected. To do this I often use dream analysis, (interpretation), creative and imaginative techniques as active imagination and art. I always utilize psychic functions of feeling, intuition, perception and thinking.
You might have a dream the night before we meet, or you have dreamt a dream which you feel is important and somehow related to the question you’re coming here with – please remember it.
I’d like to stress here, that not always deep and long therapeutic work is needed, sometimes problems can be dealt be short-term goal oriented therapy or even by a consultation. It all depends on your unique, individual journey and needs.
As Jungian Analyst I utilize three aspects of the profession suggested by Edward F. Edinger: Physician-healer, Philosopher-scientist and Priest-hierophant. This means trying to help promote client’s understanding in his or her’s own thirst for healing, knowledge seeking and spiritual dimension of the psyche. (Together they are united in the fourth – the Mother) Obstacles life places in front of us require coping by means of one or all of these modes. I view these three aspect, or psyche-elements (archetypes), as necessary if balance in one’s life is to be achieved.