Fall 1996 Season Program

Speaker: John Giannini

The Historical and Psychological Contexts for Intimate Relations

Intimate relationships are as ancient as life itself. In Genesis II, the awakened Adam, now male, sees Eve and exclaims: “This at last is bone of my bones, and flesh from my flesh!” The woman undoubtedly said the same as the man, given a metaphorical and non-patriarchal understanding of the text. Otherwise, the following would not have occured: “Now both of them were naked, the man and his wife, but the felt no shame in front of each other.” This weekend’s lecture and workshop will consider this event.

This lecture will consider historical perspectives and developments that have obscured or even prevented intimate relations. They include harsh survivial conditions, the emergence of masculine dominance leading to the eclipse of the importance of the couple in favor of the larger family or tribe, more complex political structures, and religious organizations with their laws and moral codes. Today, however, vast changes, including the emergence of nuclear families born of romantic love and not of family or clan arrangements. Now there is an opportunity and a necessary challenge as never before for a couple to realize intimate relations in both a sensual and spiritual sense. Societal as well as important inner resistance assimilated from our long patriarchal history impede the development of such intimacy. This conflict between our ancient history and our present society may account for the enormous difficulty in and the massive breakdown of the present nuclear family. John Giannini will use Genesis I and II to illustrate a model for itimacy’s separation and surrender.

The Sensuality and Spirituality of Intimate Relationships

In the workshop, we will consider the elements of spirituality and sensuality that make up an intimate relationship. Spirituality is associated with the need for separateness and flights of the spirit, and sensuality with the unity and vulnerability of the soul. We’ll keep in mind as context and guide Genesis I’s separations and Genesis II’s surrenders.

We will explore the journey towards a sacred relationship-its resistances and failures, its characteristics and its triumphs-mainly through discussion of our lives, our dreams, and dream work with emotionally laden images. Our goal is to provide tools for breaking resistances so as to activate loving powers that strengthen our intimate relationship and/or make them possible for the first time. Bring your stories and dreams.

John Giannini, M.Div., M.A., M.B.A., is a Jungian analyst in private practice in Chicago and Evanston. He holds an M.Div. in Religion and Psychology from St. Albert’s College and an M.A. from the University of Chicago Divinity School. John has published articles and lectures widely throughout the U.S. and Canada on the wounded child and narcissistic/addictive behavior. He is the author of Compass of the Soul (forthcoming from the Center for the Application of Psychological Type).

Speaker: Michael Conforti

From Psyche to a Picture of the World: Archetypal Dimensions of Self Organization

One of Jung’s greatest discoveries was the presence of Self organizing tendencies in the psyche. He realized that, manifested in dreams, symptoms, and in other symbolic form, the psyche continually introduces greater degrees of meaning and complexity into the life process. Jung went on to suggest that much of life presents as an unfolding of these archetypal, ordering processes into matter, which then assumes a recognizable form in both the internal and external world.

In the weekend lecture and workshop, Dr. Conforti will present his own findings on the nature of archetypal influences in order to illustrate the effect that the have in virtually every aspect of the life process. Building on Jung’s original work on the nature of the archetype, on more recent findings in the new sciences (including those of David Bohm, Ervin Laszlo, David Peat and Rupert Sheldrake) and on clinical material, he will show that our basic life interactions, including personal relationships, financial decisions, work situations, and even the terapeutic relationship, are goverened by the influence of these archetypal fields. In learning to recognize the underlying structure of these patterns, we can often infer the nature of the specific archetype constellated.

One of Jung’s greatest discoveries was the presence of Self organizing tendencies in the psyche. He realized that, manifested in dreams, symptoms, and in other symbolic form, the psyche continually introduces greater degrees of meaning and complexity into the life process. Jung went on to suggest that much of life presents as an unfolding of these archetypal, ordering processes into matter, which then assumes a recognizable form in both the internal and external world.

In the weekend lecture and workshop, Dr. Conforti will present his own findings on the nature of archetypal influences in order to illustrate the effect that the have in virtually every aspect of the life process. Building on Jung’s original work on the nature of the archetype, on more recent findings in the new sciences (including those of David Bohm, Ervin Laszlo, David Peat and Rupert Sheldrake) and on clinical material, he will show that our basic life interactions, including personal relationships, financial decisions, work situations, and even the terapeutic relationship, are goverened by the influence of these archetypal fields. In learning to recognize the underlying structure of these patterns, we can often infer the nature of the specific archetype constellated.

Michael Conforti, Ph.D., is a Jungian analyst and founder and Director of the Assisi Conferences. He is a faculty member of the C.G. Jung Institute in Boston, the C.G. Jung Foundation of New York and a Senior Associate faculty member in the Doctoral and Masters Programs in Clinical Psychology at Antioch, New England. He is also a visiting lecturer at the C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich and has conducted workshops for many Jungian organizations throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, and South America. He is the author of Field, Form and Fate: Patterns in Mind, Nature and Psyche (Spring Publications, Dallas, 1999).

Speaker: Dennis Merritt

Seasons of the Soul: Archetypal Patterns in Weather and Climate

“Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody ever does anything about it.” Mark Twain

Weather and climate have powerful psychological and spiritual effects upon the human psyche. The pathological dimensions of the weather have impressed themselves upon the American conciousness this past year as news reports have given us a sense of the potential effects of global warming. Our attitudes toward weather and climate reveal our relationship to nature and the unconscious. Joseph Campbell pointed out that the most recognizable, universal form of myth and analogy is that of the seasons to the human life cycle. The archetypal and imaginal apsects of these phenomena will be elucidated by an examination of weather and seasonal metaphors, myths, Native American stories, the I Ching, dreams, and Hillman’s presentation of Aphrodite as the World soul, or Anima Mundi.

The Greening of Psychology: Jung’s Contribution to Evolving Environmental Paradigms

Jungian psychology can make an important contribution to environmentalism at the most fundamental-by offering a new psycho-spiritual paradigm that can help change Western culture’s perspective on nature. Joseph Campbell felt that the next world myth was likely to have an environmental orientation. Jungian psychology is ideally situated for the task of exploring possible new paradigms. Jung’s concepts about the psyche and its connection to the natural world were born out of his intimate connection with nature. This connection was put into historical context by his study of alchemy, primal cultures, mythology and the I Ching. Jung’s concepts of synchronicity and the pychoid dimension of archetypes are radical natural paradigms, in contrast to the reigning scientific world view.

This workshop will begin with an examination of Jung’s life and Big Dreams as presented in his autobiography, to establish Jung’s paradigm of the human connection to nature. Jung felt that a person not connected to the land is neurotic, and he emphasized the cthonic dimension of the psyche. Our attention will then shift to the Greek god, Hermes. The very practice of Jungian Psychology is a hermetic endeavor that, if true to the spirit of Hermes, opens us to a deep connection to the environment. The archetypal life pattern illuminated by Hermes will be examined as a basic Western myth for our relationship to body and nature. These perspectives will be used to illustrate a holisitic approach to nature education by looking at the most succesful form of life on the planet-the insects. Our cultural attitudes toward insects, particularly the pesky ones, to a large extent reflect our attitude toward the unconscious. The psychological significance of insects in dreams and myths will be explored. The importance of animals in dreams and the concept of the spirit animal and animal medicine will also be examined.

Dennis Merritt Ph.D., holds a doctorate from Berkeley in Insect Pathology and is a diplomate of the C.G. Jung Institure in Zurich. He is in private practice as a Jungian analyst, Ecopsychologist and Sandplay therapist in Madison, Wisconson. He and his wife have conducted week-long Spirit in the Land Institutes combining scientific, Native American, and depth psychological perspectives on the environment. He is writing a book-The Dairy Farmer’s Guide to the Universe: the Greening of Psychology and Education, and co-editing an book with Chris Merritt-Spirit in the Land: Developing a Sense of Place.

Speaker: Karlyn M. Ward

Psyche and Music

What is the importance and significance of sound and music to analytic work? In dialogue with the theories of Jung, Kohut and Bonny, we will explore the use of music as a therapeutic modality, relating it to active imagination and to clinical and symbolic aspects of music and the psychotherapeutic process. The lecture will include music.

What is the importance and significance of sound and music to analytic work? In dialogue with the theories of Jung, Kohut and Bonny, we will explore the use of music as a therapeutic modality, relating it to active imagination and to clinical and symbolic aspects of music and the psychotherapeutic process. The lecture will include music.

Saturday’s workshop will include an experiential portion; participants will explore their own responses in imagery in response to music. Please wear comfortable clothing.

Karlyn M. Ward, Ph.D., L.C.S.W., B.C.D., is a Jungian analyst in private practice in Mill Valley, California. Her analytic training was done at the C.G. Jung Institute in San Francisco where she is presently a member analyst. She is a member of the Adjunct Faculty at the Pacific School of Religion, part of the Graduate Theological Union, a consortium of some 28 schools of religion in Berkeley, California. There she teachers "Introduction to Jungian Thought" and "A Psychology of Suffering: Jung’s Answer to Job." A musician, she is trained in the Bonny Method of using music as a form of active imagination, and is a Fellow in the Association for Music and Imagery. Her book, Sounding the Depths: Psyche and Music, is in process. She has given numerous seminars on music and psyche, and on redeeming the dark feminine. These seminars have been held at the C.G. Jung Institute of San Francisco, elsewhere in the Bay area, in Orange County, in Portland, in Zürich at the C.G. Jung Institute, and most recently in the south of France, in Provence