Posts tagged with the category Psychology and Spirituality
Smoke, Spit, and Suffering
"I've seen it all and it's nothing but smoke—smoke, and spitting into the wind." Ancient Hebrew Philosopher (The Message).
I love turtles. Those close to me know of my deep sense of connection with turtles. Turtles are fascinating creatures. They are beings of determination, focus, and dedication. ...
The Perspective Nature Provides
What role does nature play in your life? My family is divided between city and country dwellers. While I appreciate the numerous cultural advantages of living in the city of Philadelphia, occasionally I am annoyed by the downside – the noise, ugly alley and street views from our windows, not being able to see the stars, and most...
Flight from Shadow
Carl Jung brought into our consciousness the archetype of the shadow. He consistently warned us of the dangers of not integrating our shadow. Consider the following two quotes:
Taking it in its deepest sense, the shadow is the invisible saurian tail that man still drags behind him. Carefully amputated, it becomes the healing serpent of...
Finding the existential myth within
From, Dr. Louis Hoffman, in "Gordo’s Ghost: An Introduction to Existential Perspectives in Myth," published in Existential Psychology: East West Psychology.
"A myth is a collection of related symbols that create a worldview or meaning system. It serves as a reference for the way we see the world and as an interpreter of our...
It has been my privilege recently to watch people suffer.
Allow me to say what I mean. Sitting with therapy clients, with students in group process, with hurt relatives, I have watched as people unveiled their selves. I have watched as they allowed their hurt to surface, as they cried in front of me, as they expressed the deep pain they had been...
Listening and the Fasting of the Mind
Having introduced you to the Tao Te Ching in my last post, I follow up with another chapter from this wonderful text which expounds upon ways of knowing and the importance of emptiness, patience, stillness and tranquility.
The ancient Masters were profound and subtle.
Their wisdom was unfathomable.
There is no way to...
The Rebirth of Reality: An Existential Interpretation of Christmas
In the midst of holiday busyness, shopping, event planning, and family drama I wonder if many of us seriously consider the essential question that is always there underneath the frantic rush for parking spaces and torn wrapping paper…What is Christmas really all about? Given the current state of our American culture, I believe it is quite...
So This is Christmas
It is the season of holidays. In the faith tradition of my upbringing, it is the season of Advent, a period of four weeks leading up to the celebration of the Incarnation of God in Jesus the Nazarene. This celebration of the Incarnation is most widely known as Christmas. However, today, you will find very few people who...
Journey to the East
Editor's note: this is a summary of research findings that Donna Rockwell, PsyD, will present in China at the Second International Conference on Existential Psychology on mindfulness in clinical psychology training, May 24 - 27, in Shanghai.
I am taking mindfulness to the East.
It is something that I am rather...
Darkness Within Darkness, The Gateway to All Understanding
This is the last two lines to the first chapter of the Tao Te Ching. Perhaps you’ve heard of the famous first line - The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao. Here is the entire first chapter:
The Tao that can be told
is not the eternal Tao
The name that can be named
is not the eternal Name.
The unnamable is the...
Healing PTSD by restoring faith
Witnessing the death and pain of war can leave deep scars on the psyche of a soldier. Those scars are more commonly known as being PTSD related symptoms. In 2008, the RAND Corporation estimated that 300,000 returning troops currently suffer from PTSD and depression related to combat duties.
This trauma can rattle someone to their core, challenging...
The link between existentialism and spirituality is Awe
Shortly after becoming an existential therapist, Bob Edelstein remembers having a conversation with Rollo May.
“I asked if one could be both existential and spiritual. He responded that it was essential to be both.”
Edelstein recounts that story in his recent review of Kirk Schneider’s book Awakening to Awe, and it...