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It has often been asked, what would make a 'Laingian therapy'? One possible view might be, confronting what is there, in behaviour and experience, to test the shared reality. Laing had never been satisfied with using a single term to connote his own therapeutic style - as we know, his method included elements of existential, psychoanalytic, gestalt, bio- and auto- rhythmia, hatha-yoga, Zen, and other healing arts.

The aim of ILI master classes is to provide already experienced psychotherapists, psychiatrists and other members of the helping professions with an opportunity to undertake focused examination of R.D.Laing’s approach to treatment, through seminars by, and in individual and group consultation with, Laing’s closest colleagues. In the spirit of Ronnie’s advice that, “I can’t tell you what you should do, but I can tell you what I have done”, the goal of the ILI is a further education in working with human troubles, and in deepening ones own experience of soul making.

The following curriculum is currently in development among the members of the ILI Faculty. A four-day intensive program of study is tentatively scheduled to take place in October 2006. For further details please contact the ILI Secretariat.

Proposed ILI Curriculum

A. Theory In Practice:

  1. Interpersonal experience (overview) process and praxis, intelligibility
  2. Ontological insecurity & the false-self system: engulfment, implosion, petrification and depersonalisation, the embodied and unembodied self, authenticity and inauthenticity
  3. Modes of interpersonal experience: phantasy, communication, pretence and elusion, the counterpoint
  4. Forms of interpersonal action: complementary identity, confirmation and disconfirmation, collusion, false and untenable positions, attributions and injunctions
  5. Primary data and family scenario: operations, rules and metarules, mapping
  6. Alienation and mystification, self-consciousness
  7. Dual unity and ego-boundary: the tie and the cut-off: embryologems, psychologems, mythologems, recession and regression, procession and progression, transgression
  8. Engagement: undivided attention, clarification, reframing, co-presence, cultivated intuition, spontaneity and sensibility.

B. Influences and Traditions

  1. The Independent Mind in British Psychoanalysis and S. Ferenczi
  2. Kierkegaard, Nietszche, Heidegger, Tillich
  3. Freud, Jung, Bleuler.
  4. Francis Huxley, Bateson a.o.
  5. H.S. Sullivan, F.Fromm-Reichmann a.o

C. Meditation, Spirituality, Rebirth

  1. Birth/rebirth and regression into initiation
  2. Religious experience & psychosis
  3. Shamanic influences and healing traditions
  4. Meditation and yogic practices

D. Community Mental Health

  1. Kingsley Hall
  2. Soteria
  3. PA Houses
  4. New visions

E. Critical Psychiatry & The Trap of Theory-Making

  1. Evaluations
  2. Class, Conflict, Consciousness & the Politics of Insanity
  3. Ambitions and Folly
  4. Research and ad hoc theory in the making

F. Literature Review

  1. Biographies: A. Laing, Mullan, Burston, Clay, et al.
  2. Commentary & Critique: Kirsner, Collier, Sedgwick, Friedenberg, et al.
  3. The unpublished works, e.g., Lies of Love, Politics of Birth

G. The Arts of Love

  1. Origins in Aesculapian/Paracelsian tradition
  2. Love as violence
  3. Love as empathy

© 2004 ILI. Site design by Margreta Carr