The Soul’s Challenge between hope and anguish in a time of planetary crisis

Summer School Canterbury, England 4-8 August 2008

My great-great grandchildren ask me in dreams
“What did you do while the planet was plundered?
What did you do when the Earth was unravelling?
Surely you did something when the seasons started failing,
as the mammals, reptiles, birds were all dying.
Did you fill the streets with protest when democracy was stolen?
What did you do once you knew”
Drew Dillinger

We have lost the sense of our connection as part of the greater web of life. As a result we have inflicted a wound on our world from which it may not recover. Melting ice caps, rising sea levels, extinction of species, denuded seas are some of symptoms of an impending catastrophe. The scale is so great that we can barely encompass it. As individuals we react with denial, frustration, despair and powerlessness; on a collective level we see manic consumption, increasing addiction and desperate escapism. This crisis presents us with an enormous challenge – to face the reality of our current predicament and to recognise that whether the future will be catastrophic or meaningful and sustainable depends on the attitudes and actions of us, as human beings.
The potential tragedy we are caught in is that we have failed to act collectively and decisively, permitting a selfish individualism to hold sway and ruin our world. Yet building a sense of collective awareness, conscience and responsibility is not easy.
How do we all connect around the crisis of the planet? In the words of Albert Einstein: “humankind experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest – a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” In this way we may contribute to the healing of our wounded world as well discovering a new sense of richness and meaning in our daily lives.
The conference will awaken our deep yearnings for union, for wonder and awe – the inspiration and responsibility of being part of the whole. As a community, whether through sharing our grief, exploring new paradigms, prayer & meditation or awakening the warrior, we will work to release ourselves from our conditioned experience of a separate ego existence.

Morning Training Seminars

Training seminars will take place over the four morning sessions. The groups for these will be fixed to give continuity and coherence. Therefore you can only choose one of the Training Seminars below.

AWAKENING BEAUTY IN TIMES OF TERROR Gianni Yoav Dattilo

In a sense, all the contemporary crises can be reduced to a crisis about the nature of beauty.

John O’ Donohue

We may awaken to Beauty through a renewed perception of the world ‘as it is’, beyond stereotypes and collective views, in nature, the arts and in ordinary everyday moments. It may evoke a taste of the eternal, breed a generous desire to share with others or stimulate its shadow, which is possessiveness. Beauty has a central place in the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, and integrates the opposite forces of kindness and power. We will explore our own relationship with beauty in our lives, and experientially find our personal ways to awaken its mysterious force in times of a global crisis.

THE HERO ARCHETYPE AS HEALER Robert Bakker

The archetype of the Hero, as found in myths and stories, is the redeemer, the saviour, the bodhisattva. By going through his or her own ordeal he/she transcends her/himself and becomes the one that heals family, land or even the world. It is that energy we may need in this time of global challenge. As Einstein said: “The world will not evolve past its current state by using the same thinking that created the situation in the first place”. In this seminar we will use an inspiring legend from the native American Iroquois to learn how their way of looking at the world can change our way of seeing. We will use rituals and meditations from the legend to deepen our relationship to the earth and its inhabitants. We will use our creativity to make the discoveries of this adventure applicable in our work as therapists

THE PATH OF PRAYER Nanne Hessel & Irja Hellström

The task to create peace goes beyond all religions
Johannes Paulus II

One way to meet our present challenge is to turn inwards to the contact the depths of our compassion and grief for the world. Prayers are not an escape from the reality; on the contrary, they carry a possibility for healing our reality. We will concentrate our individual energies and create rituals and prayers for the work in the world. We will explore different ways to strengthen our hope but we will also include our doubts. We invite you to bring a symbol which reflects your hope for our planet and we will share what is in our collective consciousness. Warm welcome.

WITNESSING UNSPEAKABLE TRUTHS THE WORK OF TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION COMMISSIONS AS A METAPHOR FOR PSYCHOTHERAPEUTIC WORK Gary Hutchinson & Eve Adams

In the aftermath of the end of the brutal regime of apartheid in South Africa the conception of the truth and reconciliation approach to healing trauma was both audacious and inspirational. It rejected an anticipated call for revenge, retaliation and punishment in favour of understanding, reparation and participation of victims with persecutors. In this seminar we will take this approach as a creative metaphor for therapy itself. Participants will be invited to be involved and imaginative in experimenting with ways of working within this territory. It will also explore the need for us as therapists to be actively aware and engaged in healing the world’s suffering as much as our personal suffering.

INSPIRED CHOICE-MAKING Stefan Wängerstedt & Rineke Vermeulen Wängerstedt

We invite you to explore with us how the choices we make in our lives can be inspired by faith, hope and love and how that might encourage us and give strength instead of draining our energy. Drawing from Quaker experience and practices we invite you to get in touch with your inner teacher – your inner wisdom. What does it mean to listen more closely to the soul’s whispering challenge? Could it guide us into a downward mobility and a more undivided life? We will work in a circle of trust, which we will create together and in which the soul might find a safe place to become visible.

THE POWER OF DIALOGUE: A PATHWAY TOWARDS PEACE INSIDE AND OUTSIDE Barbara Mettler-v.Meibom

Given that at the bottom of any crisis there is blocked communication, dialogue is both an attitude and a way of enhancing communication by opening to the unheard and broadening ones own awareness of the unknown. Dialoguing is a way towards peace, both inner and outer: it creates multiperspectivity, reduces anger, hate and misunderstanding and fosters wisdom in behaviour, interaction and decisions. By dialoguing between different subpersonalities, psychosynthesis offers a metaphor for dialoguing on the interpersonal level in any field. This seminar will explore the art and process of dialogue and will cover skills in relation to conflict resolution, decision-making and the maintenance of equanimity.

IMAGINAL WOUNDING – AN INTERFACE BETWEEN PERSONAL AND PLANETARY Nicky Marshall & Chris Robertson

The world, because of its breakdown, is entering a new moment of consciousness: by drawing attention to itself by meas of its symptoms, it is becoming aware of itself as a psychic reality James Hillman
In an age in which imagination has been degraded and surface glamour and style has usurped its potency, soul is starve through this impoverishment. Yet, within this sterile landscape may lie the seeds of change: if the world is becoming aware of itself through its wounds, then humanity, as the wounded wounder, is the means of that self awareness and healing. These seminars will explore how we imagine our broken relationship with each other and the earth, paying attention to the symptoms both within and without. Our aim is to re-vitalise our capacity to respond to these symptoms and to support the co-creation of a planetary psychic reality.

THE BURNT-OUT SOUL: THE THERAPIST/COUNSELLOR BETWEEN SELF-DENIAL AND REAL COMPASSION Tan Loc Nguyen & Chantal Quillart

The burnt-out syndrome is a precious indicator that points to deep -seated narcissistic needs, at an archaic level. Countertransference and pathology structure, as conceptual tools, are not sufficiently inclusive to help us explore the subtle realms of the burnt-out soul. In the seminar we will look at ways of moving ourselves towards real compassion and caring. The seminar will also use the experience of soul embodiment as a human given so that we may understand the various manifestations of the burnt-out syndrome and face the issues involved .

CHANGE THE DREAM Maggie Burlington & Joan Crawford

We live in a culture which is in thrall to the dream of technological progress and the pursuit of individual happiness – it is a form of trance which is bringing us to the brink of planetary catastrophe. We need to change the dream by which we live to one which recognises our essential interdependence, not only with one another but with the planet, for the healing of both ourselves and our world. In this seminar series we will explore how we can extend the context of therapeutic work from the purely personal to the larger cultural and environmental context.

EXPLORING A PARTICIPATORY WORLDVIEW: TOWARDS A SENSE OF PLACE Helen Sieroda and Jean Hardy

As the old ways break down a new vision of reality is emerging, a worldview based on participation and relationship. A ‘participatory perspective’ challenges many goals and norms we take for granted, requiring a transformation of thinking and identity. It calls us to become more effective agents for change, grounding inner work in meaningful actions in the world. Incorporating deep ecology, mindfulness practice, action research, and coaching, we will explore characteristics and implications of a participatory worldview for our current crisis. There will be opportunities for both reflection and exploring pragmatic potential for action.

Elective Workshops

Elective workshops will take place in the afternoons and give the opportunity to work with a variety of different trainers to meet a cross-section of fellow participants.

IT TAKES TWO TO TANGO! Penny Graham & Jonathan Freilich
HEALING ON A UNIVERSAL PLANE Kristina Brode
AUTHENTICITY AND PROFESSIONALITY Fredrik Lundh
OUT BEYOND IDEAS OF WRONGDOING AND RIGHTDOING, THERE IS A FIELD I´LL MEET YOU THERE Linda Thörn
THE CRISIS CAUSES MOURNING, MOURNING DISSOLVES THE CRISIS Ursel Neef
HEALING THE HISTORY BEHIND HISTORY Gabrielle Steiner
WILLINGNESS OF THE HEART – MAKING OUR LOVE AVAILABLE TO OURSELVES & THE WORLD Torsten Konrad
UTOPIA AND DYSTOPIA: INNER WORLDS, OUTER REALITIES Keith Silvester
APPROACHING OUR EDGE – TALKING POWER, OPPRESSION AND TRANSFORMATION IN THE THERAPY ROOM Deborah Berger & Havva Mustafa
THE WAY OF SENSORY AWARENESS Joel Niemann
USING CONSTELLATIONS TO UNDERSTAND THE SOUL’S CHALLENGE Ingrid Gunberg & Ingrid Begat
A PILGRIMAGE AROUND CANTERBURY Lesley Brown & Maggie Anwell
SACRED DANCING Lesley Brown
WHAT ON EARTH SHALL WE TELL THE CHILDREN? Ewa Robertson & Sarah van Gogh
THE MYTH OF EXODUS Livia Frischer
WALKING THE LABYRINTH Jay Edge
THE ILLUSION OF CRISIS Gerhard Schobel

Exhibition of Paintings

At the summer school there will be a special exhibition of paintings "Concerns for the Body – Personal and Planetary" by Sue Adams, a psychosynthesis therapist and artist.

The European Federation for Psychosynthesis Psychotherapy

Founded in 1997, the EFPP is a non-profit association registered in Florence, Italy. EFPP operates as a federal body bringing together the autonomous psychosynthesis psychotherapy centres and institutes from different European countries. It works towards an agreement of common standards of training and code of ethics and represents psychosynthesis psychotherapy in European and international structures such as the EAP (European Association for Psychotherapy). Within EAP, EFPP is a European Wide Accrediting Organisation and appoints representatives for supporting local organisations in awarding the ECP (the European Certificate of Psychotherapy).

EFPP Member Organisations:

  • AEON, Zentrum für Psychosynthese (Basel)
  • Centre Source – Ecole Française de Psychosynthèse (Paris)
  • CIRCADIAN Institut für angewandte Psychosynthese (Bergisch Gladbach)
  • Eckhart House (Dublin)
  • Psykosyntes Akademin (Stockholm)
  • Psychosynthesis and Education Trust (London)
  • Psykosyntes Institutet (Gothenberg)
  • Psychosynthesis Studies (Amsterdam)
  • Re-Vision Centre for Integrative Psychosynthesis (London)
  • Societa Italiana di Psicosintesi Terapeutica (Florence)

Application and Programme

Application forms are available on the EFPP website www.psychosynthesis.net or by emailing Steve Marshall: efppadmin@gmail.com
This is the fourth gathering of the professional psychosynthesis therapists in Europe.

Costs and Accommodation

Registration for Seminars and Workshops

There are lower rates for individuals belonging to member organisations. There is also a discount if you pay before 1 April 2008. These exclude accommodation, which is dealt with below.
Individuals in EFPP organisations pay £165 (€ 225), plus accommodation, before 1 April and £215 (€ 295) after that date.
Individuals in non-EFPP organisations pay £215 (€ 295), plus accommodation, before 1 April and £265 (€ 365) after that date.

Accommodation Costs

The Summer School runs from 1700 Monday evening until 1200 noon on Friday. Registration is on Monday afternoon from 1400-1700.

Residential

Residential accommodation includes access to seminar rooms, refreshments, lunch and dinner including the Gala Dinner on Thursday evening.
Single Standard – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights – £305.00 (€ 420)
Single En Suite – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights – £395.00 (€ 545)

Non-Residential

Basic non-residential costs include access to rooms, refreshments and lunch and dinner including the Gala Dinner on Thursday evening.
Non-residential – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday – £220.00 (€ 305)
If you wish to attend for less than the full four days you cannot attend the morning seminars. For costs please email the administrator on efppadmin@gmail.com.

Friday Lunch

If you wish to stay for Friday lunch there is a charge of £10.00 (€ 15)

TRAVEL OPTIONS to University of Kent at Canterbury include

By Rail from London; from Ashford (for Eurostar); from Dover and Folkestone (for ferries and Eurotunnel).
By Air from Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted.
By Car (parking must be pre-arranged).
Details are on the University’s website http://www.kent.ac.uk/maps/canterbury/find-campus.html

The City of CANTERBURY

Canterbury, an ancient Cathedral city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a 10 minute bus ride from the campus.
It has two castles, six museums, the world’s most famous cathedral (site of the murder of Thomas Becket), an abbey founded in 597CE and the oldest parish church in England still in constant use.

EFPP logo

Download registration form (.doc document)

Article written by admin