ORIGINAL PAPER: INNER GROWTH THROUGH PERSONAL ENCOUNTER – IMPULSES OF EXISTENTIAL PEDAGOGY
EVA MARIA WAIBEL
In this article, prerequisites, conditions and factors are illustrated that contribute to the success of a pedagogy which focuses on inner growth. Five essential topics are focused upon: 1) Firstly, a differentiation is made between the terms growth, development and becoming. 2) Secondly, prerequisites are described for inner growth or becoming. 3) Thirdly, central topics of Existential Pedagogy are illustrated, such as encounter and questions to the person. These topics are essential for the child’s willingness to change. Due to questions to the person, the person of the child is activated and a path towards self-initiative of children is prepared. By providing educators with the possibility of phenomenological understanding of children, the encounter with the person becomes an essential and decisive approach in education. The aim of Existential Pedagogy is to accompany children and adolescents to take their lives into their own hands and live a life with inner acceptance. 4) Further basic aspects of Existential Pedagogy are drafted. 5) Finally, similarities and differences between the idea of man in Existential Pedagogy and in other reformatory pedagogies are discussed.
Keywords: Developmental Psychology, Existential Pedagogy, Self-Initiative, Inner Growth, Encounter, Reformatory Pedagogy
RELIGIOSITY AND EXISTENTIAL FULFILMENT
OF MUSLIMS AND BUDDHISTS LIVING IN RUSSIA
VLADIMIR B. SHUMSKIY & ANASTASIA Y. KLIMOCHKINA
The article is devoted to the study of the relationship between existential fulfilment as one of the indicators of psychological well-being, and religiosity among Russian citizens practicising Islam and Buddhism. We also compare existential fulfilment of Muslims and Buddhists and Russians from the general population. We understand existential fulfilment, based on A. Längle’s existential analytical approach, as the personal realization of the four fundamental existential motivations (FMs). We first briefly consider how the main themes of the FMs are reflected in the world outlook and practice of both Islam and Buddhism. In an empirical study on a sample of Muslims (N = 181) and Buddhists (N = 131) we used the original Russian version of the Test of Existential Motivation and an “objective” indicator of religious involvement: a survey form for assessing religiosity level includes questions about the frequency of religious practices. A positive correlation was found between existential fulfilment and religiosity. Regression analysis showed that religiosity is a significant predictor of existential fulfilment, independent of the gender, age, place of residence of respondents and the method used for data collection. The level of realization of the 2nd FM, concerning emotionality and value of life, among Muslim participations, was significantly higher than among Buddhist participants. In the levels of realization of other existential fundamental motivations and in the general indicator of existential fulfilment, no significant differences were found between the representatives of two religious groups. Comparison of existential fulfilment indicators for Muslims and Buddhists with similar indicators for a neutral Russian sample from the general population demonstrated that the level of realization for all fundamental existential motivations was significantly higher for believers. Further studies are needed for testing our results in other countries and using representatives of other religions.
Keywords: existential fulfilment, religiosity, psychological well-being, fundamental existential motivations, Islam,
BEING IS BECOMING
Development in the existential paradigm
Being of mankind is not static but geared towards becoming, development and change. Becoming, seen as emergence of the new, is differentiated from development seen as shaping of what already exists. The complexity of these processes is outlined in a number of questions raised. In the existential paradigm, becoming and the development of capabilities for the realization of existence are of particular interest. An “existential stage” centrally shows thereby which establishes this generative process on two levels: being placed into circumstances has the characteristics of becoming, and subsequently embracing the possibilities leads to development. In Development Psychology, the primary experience of the child is embossed through pre-personal becoming, and its configuration is outlined in this paper. Building on this, the embracing of the world and the development of processing structures of the ego by means of experiencing the “world” are described parallel to D. Sterns empirical research. A reference towards even greater spans of development in life rounds off the theme.
Keywords: becoming, development, Development Psychology, Existential Analysis, fundamental motivations
DEVELOPMENT AND GROWTH IN THE UNDERSTANDING OF
To begin with, a few focal points in the perspective of the different approaches of the basic orientation “humanistic psychotherapy” are outlined – especially concerning their understanding of “growth”. Subsequently an overlapping concept is introduced which involves the various process levels in their interplay. It is a matter of interaction of – solely analytically separable – processes on corporeal, psychological, interpersonal and cultural levels. Finally, the issue of complementarities in subjective and inter-subjective perspectives during the description of the happening is raised. In particular, we preferably tend to describe living conditions, resources, findings, problems, solution possibilities etc. from the inter-subjective perspective of so-called “objective” or “scientific” observers, and to neglect the perspective of the affected subject.
Keywords: humanistic psychotherapy, psychotherapy, person-centered systems theory, growth, living environment, subject, inter-subjectivity
ON THE ART OF GROWING UP
Development through self-recognition
Each professional accompaniment of people is guided by a more or less reflected understanding of ripeness and mastery of life, setting standards for interventions while working with them. In this article existential criteria for the understanding of ripeness as well as seven essential duties are outlined, which the human being must face during the life cycle. If managing this is successful, it manifests itself in personality. For the art of growing up as a lifelong task shows in the ability to confront the inevitability of existential challenges and to respond authentically. This means to assume the maturity of personal responsibility for one’s own life and society and to confront the fateful topics of life.
Keywords: growing up, ripeness, self-recognition, persona-
lity, development, maturity, responsibility
WHAT DOESN’T KILL US…?
On the Janus face of trauma
RENATE BUKOVSKI & LILO TUTSCH
This article deals with the “other” side of consequences of trauma. As severe as the negative consequences of traumatizations may be, it moreover appears important to realize that the majority of those who have been subjected to life-threatening incidents didn’t develop essential diagnostic disorders in consequence and that many of those affected even experience increased maturation from traumatic experience. This hasn’t been taken into sufficient consideration for a long time. But since the 1980s, a range of studies on the phenomenon of posttraumatic growth exist. In the following, this will be examined from an existential analytical perspective.
Keywords: trauma, overcoming trauma, posttraumatic growth, growth perspective, supportive factors for posttraumatic growth
PROCESSES OF MATURATION IN FACE OF FINITUDE – EXPERIENCES FROM A PSYCHO-ONCOLOGIC WORKING CONTEXT
The following article begins with a journey to medieval art and to the spiritual literary genre “Ars moriendi – Ars vivendi”. In the Middle Ages, preparing for a good death required an adequate preparation during life. The current understanding of death and dying is outlined. Two case studies show that knowing life could be over in the short term, can initiate a process of existential growth, decisively influencing the personal way of living. Psycho-oncological and existential analytic aspects enabling a maturation process from an existential perspective are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the fourfold affirmation of the basic conditions of life.
Keywords: existential psychotherapy, existential analysis,
logotherapy, psycho-oncology, art of living, existential growth
GROWTH AND PERSON
C. TOBIAS JAHN
Applied Existential Analysis mostly implies personal growth of the vis-à-vis as an aim of the work process. This needs to be comprehended in the context of humanistic psychology. To this purpose the philosophical basics of the humanistic conception of man and the understanding of the person must be elaborated. What exactly is it that can and should grow here? What are we aiming at in wanting to encourage growth? And what is the effect on our practical work?
Keywords : growth, person, spirit, philosophy
“THE HUMAN BEING RIPENS THROUGH SEVERE ILLNESS” – IS THIS REALLY THE CASE?
On the basis of the observation, that there are people who seem to ripen through severe illness, it is not uncommon that the assumption is made that severe illness and maturation are connected as a rule. This contribution questions these assumptions and outlines both the moments which can lead to maturation through illness and the dark sides of this concept as well.
Keywords: illness, post traumatic growth
Existential Analytical psychotherapy with refugees
SIMONE D. KASTER
This paper presents a case study, from the practice of the author, of a 38 year old man from Cameroon who was severely traumatized because of forced migration as a result of having been tortured physically and mentally for a prolonged period of 5 years in custody due to his political activities in his homeland. The patient exhibited a posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and had the feeling that he was “going insane”. On top of this, the feeling of ‘biographical disruption’, the loss of identity as foreigner in a strange country exacerbated his symptoms. It will be outlined how treating the patient by situating his suffering in the four motivations of EA and treating him accordingly, major change and improvement of his symptoms could be observed.
Keywords: lived experience of forced migration, refugee, trauma, grounding, compassion, hope, meaning
„ONE WORD, ONE SENTENCE – […] RECOGNIZED LIFE, SUDDEN MEANING“*
Poetry therapy and bibliotherapy in existential analytical context
As *Gottfried Benn strikingly formulated in the headline verses (1941), poetry, as shaped language and literature, is able to make meaning appear and to render one’s own life understandable – two original concerns of Existential Analysis. The usage of literature and the incitement to write during the process of counseling and therapy can also grant consolation, contribute to overcoming pain and grief, support self-distancing and self-transcendence, induce experience of value and change in perspective, initiate reorientation and provide impulses for growth and maturation. Many ways of proceeding in poetry therapy and bibliotherapy can be integrated into existential analytical work and are liable to contribute to its enrichment.
Keywords: poetry therapy, bibliotherapy, methods,
languages, poetry literature, therapeutic reading and writing
RKING WITH RESOURCES IN TRAUMA THERAPY – TOOLS FOR CHANGE PROCESSES
Work with resources can contribute to alter solidified perception and to modify the approach to oneself and the world in the present and in the past. Resources as tools of changing processes under the aspect of working with resources in Existential Analysis, resource techniques being used in different psychotherapeutic schools in trauma therapy and resources in ego state therapy are outlined.
Keywords: resources, change, Existential Analysis, ego state therapy
PREPARING GROUND IN THE ABYSS OF FEARS
BARBARA GAWEL & DORIS FISCHER-DANZINGER
The process of development and growth doesn’t only find attention at the end of the therapy when it is regarded as a whole. The process is theme as well in phases, intermediate stations, when the patient has achieved more stability, self-empowerment and the possibility to deal with for him/her difficult situations. An early psychotherapy process stage of a patient with compulsive fixated behavior is outlined during the demonstration of the method after a short topical introduction. The patient worked on becoming increasingly independent from compulsion. It was a matter of the first steps of Personal Existential Analysis (PEA) in particular (Längle 2016, 199), since the description and work on cognition stand at the beginning of the process. In doing so, ground and alleviation is gained as well. Only from this ground the decisive process becomes possible.
Keywords: compulsion, description, cognition
PSYCHOTHERAPY WITH SCHIZOPHRENIC PEOPLE – SPECIFICS AND CHALLENGES
Central psychotherapeutic steps working with schizophrenic patients will be demonstrated by means of a case history. Subsequently the theoretical concepts of the existential analytical psychotherapeutic phases in work with schizophrenic patients are outlined. How to deal with biographical aspects in the psychotherapeutic process will also be discussed.
Keywords: schizophrenia, existential analytical psychotherapeutic phases, biographical work
FROM CREATIVE DIVERSITY TO FORM DIVERSITY
Synonyms for form are “growth” in the sense of liberty and “shaping” in the sense of regulation. At our secondary school for art and design we face the questions: When does growth need liberty? When is shaping necessary? A dynamic interaction enables individual changing processes in young people. Various roads lead to graduation for the Abitur. Due to the specific conditions of creative processes the student’s person is taken seriously. They open up forms of expression for their inner struggle. Outgrowth may occur. Rank growth is accepted. Finally everything is about the creativity of growth, not about speed and uniformity.
Key Words: growth, liberty, regulation, creative processes, diversity
MINDFULNESS IN EVERYDAY SCHOOL LIFE
Opportunity or fashionable trend?
Mindfulness and meditation are currently very popular and are taking over many areas of life. But what is mindfulness, how can it be classified and understood in terms of existential analysis, and what opportunities does it hold for schools? These questions are addressed, and subsequently the project “Effect and experience of mindfulness in school lessons – a practice project” is presented. The project was carried out at a high school with a class of 14 olds. The main conclusion of the project is that regular mindfulness practice in school lessons is very useful for students and teachers as well as for learning and that it enriches and promotes learning.
Keywords: mindfulness, school, project
HEALTH CARE SYSTEM IN STATE OF FLUX – SIGNIFICANCE OF LEADERSHIP IN TRANSFORMATION PROCESSES
Health care institutions are currently facing tremendous changes, driven by different determinants such as lasting high cost pressure, understaffing of skilled workers, changes in the professional job profiles, technical innovation and increasing political influence. Strategies such as Organisational Development or Change-Management structure change processes with different approaches and tempi. Regardless of the concept, staff is getting more and more discontent with the working conditions. Management and executives are responsible to maintain work ability of staff and ensure a high quality of treatment for patients.
Attitudes and conduct of managers play a pivotal role in every change process. In this paper I will highlight on leaders, resources and obstacles for transformation processes referring to a survey with medical professionals.
Keywords: Organizational Development, Change-
Management, transformation processes, effectiveness of
leadership, psychological contract of medical doctors,
prescencing, Personal Existential Analysis