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1. Transpersonal Psychotherapy (SUNY
2. Textbook Of Transpersonal Psychiatry
3. Beyond the Brain (Suny Series,
4. Integral Psychology: Consciousness,
5. Psychosynthesis: A Psychology
6. Psychotherapy and Spirit: Theory
7. Samadhi: Self Development in Zen,
8. Integral Psychology: Yoga, Growth,
9. The Primal Wound: A Transpersonal
10. Transpersonal Psychologies: Perspectives
11. Up from Eden: A Transpersonal
12. The Cosmic Game: Explorations
13. Psychology of the Future: Lessons
14. Higher Wisdom: Eminent Elders
15. Transpersonal Knowing: Exploring
16. Transpersonal Psychology in Psychoanalytic
17. Humanistic and Transpersonal Psychology:
18. Revisioning Transpersonal Theory
19. Ecstatic Transformation: Transpersonal
20. Psychology and the Internet, Second

1. Transpersonal Psychotherapy (SUNY Series in the Philosophy of Psychology) (S U N Y Series in the Philosophy of Psychology)
Paperback: 600 Pages (1996-03)
list price: US$31.95 -- used & new: US$31.94
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0791428362
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Since its original publication in 1980, this book has become a classic in transpersonal psychotherapy. This new edition contains articles by the major figures in the field, including new contributions by Stanislav Grof, John Nelson, Donald Evans, Charles Tart, Edward Hoffman, Seymour Boorstein, W. Michael Keane and Stephen Cope, Sylvia Boorstein, and Roger J. Woolger. The articles present a spectrum of widely diverse perspectives—from precise behavioristic work with attention training, through creative clinical pharmacology and theory development, to innovative use of chakra energies. The result is a rich and provocative summary of the state of the art in transpersonal psychotherapy.

The editor's focus is on the scientific healing/mysticism alliance, which dates back to the earliest shamans and in modern times has engaged William James, Carl Jung, Roberto Assagioli, and Abraham Maslow. In the book, some of the most respected pioneers in the field give their vision of the synergistic potential of these two powerful traditions. Transpersonal Psychotherapy describes a wide variety of uses of traditional and spiritual approaches for the alleviation of mental suffering and for spiritual development. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic
Actually this book is a classic one to the field.It was orginally published in 1980.There are gems of wisdom to be gained in this book, but it is not current with writers such as Wilber, Washburn, Wade, and Ferrer.So what? ... Read more

2. Textbook Of Transpersonal Psychiatry And Psychology
Hardcover: 464 Pages (1996-05-17)
list price: US$68.00 -- used & new: US$54.40
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0465095305
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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This important new book brings together the work of top scholars and clinicians at leading universities and medical centers on the benefits and risks of transpersonal therapy. After comparing a variety of multicultural approaches—Zen Buddhism, existential phenomenology, and Christian mysticism, among many others—the book offers a wealth of information on specific disorders and the application of transpersonal psychology techniques such as visualization, breathwork, and “past lives” regression.With solid scholarship, wide scope, and accessible style, Textbook of Transpersonal Psychiatry and Psychology will become the standard work for students, researchers, clinicians, and lay readers interested in extending psychiatry and psychology into sciences that describe the functioning of the human mind, thereby building bridges between those disciplines and spirituality.
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Customer Reviews (7)

4-0 out of 5 stars Transpersonal Psychology needed a definition
So many people, both professionals and laymen, just don't get it when it comes to transpersonal psychology (the word still gets a spelling underline in the word processor).This textbook is well organized and provides an excellent insight into the concepts.I would highly recommend it as a starting place for those who would like to know more as the bibliography and references can point to more extensive material.The book is also well written and edited as they kept the chapters in a logical sequence and short enough to complete in a minimum amount of time.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource!
Because transpersonal psychology relies heavily on first hand (subjective) experience, it is extremely difficult to discuss this academically. Despite this difficulty, this book manages to explain and explore the phenomenon quite successfully. This is book covers the transpersonal experience from many different viewpoints and is an excellent resource book for research in this field. If you would like a shorter and more simple explanation of the transpersonal experience, I strongly suggest "The Ever-transcending Spirit" by Toru Sato. It is an absolute gem and should be read by everyone interested in transpersonal experiences!

5-0 out of 5 stars Put it on your shelf
This book is a great reference book and if you are teaching a class in transpersonal psychology this should be the textbook for the class.It is very informative and the author is very clear in his understanding and dissemination of the information provided.It is a must have book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Good overview
I am trying to learn more about transpersonal psychology and transpersonal practices.This book more than did the trick.It gave a good overview of the different angles the field touches. It gave great anectdotal stories as well. It is defineity a must have.It introduced many of the fathers of the field and there perspectives; Jung, Maslow, Wilber, Freud, Assogolini.It also showed the contributions of spirtiual traditions:Buddhism, Hinduism, Shamanism, Christianity, Kabbalah. It introduced many techniques used:guided imagery, past life regression, meditation, breathwork, psychedelics.

5-0 out of 5 stars Entheogens: Professional Listing
"Textbook of Transpersonal Psychiatry and Psychology" has been selected for listing in "Religion and Psychoactive Sacraments: An Entheogen Chrestomathy."http://www.csp.org/chrestomathy ... Read more

3. Beyond the Brain (Suny Series, Transpersonal & Humanistic Psychology)
by Stanislav Grof
Paperback: 486 Pages (1985-08-01)
list price: US$31.95 -- used & new: US$14.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0873958993
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Beyond the Brain seriously challenges the existing neurophysiological models of the brain. After three decades of extensive research on those non-ordinary states of consciousness induced by psychedelic drugs and by other means, Grof concludes that our present scientific world view is as inadequate as many of its historical predecessors. In this pioneering work, he proposes a new model of the human psyche that takes account of his findings. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

3-0 out of 5 stars Is this an echo in my head?
Stanislav Grof discusses, introduces some great ideas. Many of these would constitute as revolutionary for most of us.
My issue with his book-reference to the review title- is that he repeats himself so much that reading the book became less fun than Chinese torture.
Also he would like to disprove many of today's traditional psychiatric school's findings, but he has a difficult time to built up a comprehensive argument to support his ideas.
I suspect that this is more a sign of bad penmanship than the absence of valuable findings in his field of study.
Still I would recommend the book, because it just might wake people up to a brave new world...

2-0 out of 5 stars Not for the faint-hearted
I can't say I'm as enthusiastic about this book as all the other reviewers are.I read this shortly after finishing Grof's book "LSD Psychotherapy", which I found to be an interesting, even excellent, read."Beyond the Brain" certainly has exciting ideas in it, and is a strong attempt to look at the idea of consciousness in a new light.Grof has much to say about the Newtonian-Cartesian worldview, and makes plain its deficiencies in relation to our concept of the human mind.The book is well researched and covers a lot of ground.Much of what Grof writes about here relates to the field of physics, which he appears to have a firm grasp of.

But, it's also long (400+ pages of text), verbose, and convoluted.A great deal of the book involves psychological/emotional issues, which Grof categorizes according to his concept of "COEX systems".He also discussed the COEX idea at some length in "LSD Psychotherapy", but I just can't buy into the COEX paradigm.As another reviewer pointed out, it pins most psychological issues directly to residual birth trauma.

If you want a very complex, thought provoking read, this should be just the thing.But don't say you weren't warned.

4-0 out of 5 stars Plenty of nuggets in the goldfield
This book is a bit like a gold mine.There are plenty of nuggets there, but I also found a lot of gravel.I'm no psychotherapist, and I do buy into the concept of a holographic universe and transendental consciousness, which is heady stuff indeed, but the insistance that almost all psychological issues are tied in with birth trauma (perinatal matrices), and the constant references to LSD studies got a bit tiresome after a time.I found the summary of the major (historical) contributors to the field of psychotherapy excellent, and much food for thought in Grof's appoaches to mental "illness" (noting, that he seriously challenges the usual definitions of mental illness, and, indeed, mental wellness).For me the book was a bit of a plow, but definitely worth it for the nuggets.

BEYOND THE BRAIN presents the distilled essence of the lifework of Stanislav Grof, M.D.: the insights and conclusions he has come to as a result of his seventeen years as a
pioneering LSD psychotherapist.

The opening chapter explores the convergence of modern physics with ancient mysticism, and the resulting radical implications for human psychology, thus setting the stage for the rest of the book.

Chapter two, "Dimensions of the Human Psyche: Cartography of Inner Space," describes the stages a person passes through when undergoing a series of low-dose psychedelic therapy sessions; these stages correspond to increasingly deeper layers of the psyche.

During the first few therapy sessions, one relives childhood traumas.Subsequent sessions gradually deepen into a reliving of one's birth, and a confrontation with death.After many such death-rebirth sessions, one experiences the final ego death: a profound psychospiritual annihilation, followed by visions of blinding white supernatural light, with feelings of ecstasy and rebirth.All subsequent psychedelic sessions are transpersonal: embryonic memories, encountering deceased relatives, ESP episodes, etc.

These three levels of the psyche, as revealed by LSD psychotherapy--biographical, death-rebirth, and transpersonal--provide a working model of the psyche.

Chapter three, "The World of Psychotherapy: Towards an Integration of Approaches," describes and critiques about a dozen major schools of psychotherapy from Freud, Adler, and Jung through Maslow and the modern experiential therapies of gestalt, primal scream, and bodywork.Grof feels that each is talking about a different level of the psyche: Freud deals with events occurring since birth, Reich and Rank describe the birth trauma, while Jung and Maslow focus on the transpersonal/spiritual dimension.The author integrates all into a coherent whole: while acknowledging childhood influences, he sees the trauma of birth as primary; he also recognizes the profound healing potential of ecstatic mystical/peak experiences.

Chapter four, "The Architecture of Emotional Disorders," is for me the core of the book.It examines how the birth trauma is the root cause of much psychopathology, from sexual dysfunctions and variations (impotence, sadomasochism, etc.), to extreme violence and aggression (such as serial murders), to neuroses (anxiety, depression, psychosomatic symptoms, and the like), to psychosis.Grof holds out hope of healing for all mental/emotional illness; even with psychosis, he has found that deliberately intensifying symptoms, using experiential or psychedelic therapy, leads to a radical breakthrough and positive resolution.

Chapter five explains why the medical model is ineffective and inappropriate in psychiatry; rather than suppression of symptoms, the author has found that purposefully intensifying symptoms results in spontaneous, autonomous healing.

In chapter six, the various mechanisms of healing are discussed, from abreaction and catharsis, to death-rebirth experiences and reliving fetal traumas, to direct mystical/peak experiences of the divine.

Chapter seven describes hyperventilation therapy as well as other nondrug experiential therapies.It also outlines the basic principles of psychotherapy; Grof Feels that "the psychotherapeutic process is not the treatment of a disease, but an adventure of self-exploration and self-discovery....the client is the main protagonist with full responsibility.The therapist functions as a facilitator" (p. 375).

The book concludes with an epilogue, a fascinating examination of how "in wars and revolutions nations act out a group fantasy of birth" (p. 423), as documented by psychohistorian Lloyd de Mause.

Scattered throughout the book are three dozen or so illustrations, mostly from the author's and others' LSD psychotherapy sessions, which suitably enhance the text and help bring it to life.

This book is not light reading, but to the intellectually curious, motivated layperson or psychotherapist, I believe it will yield its fruits and prove itself well worth reading.

It has served as a guidebook on my own psychotherapeutic journey (involving legal, safe psychedelic therapy complemented by hyperventilation therapy), helping me understand what I am going through, and letting me know what to expect next; it has also helped me understand other people, including their religious fanaticism, sexual preferences, and even, with several persons, their psychotic symptoms.

In conclusion, if I could have only one book in my library (beyond a dictionary and a Bible), BEYOND THE BRAIN: BIRTH, DEATH, AND TRANSCENDENCE IN PSYCHOTHERAPY would be that book.

Other books by Stanislav Grof which I've enjoyed: THE ADVENTURE OF SELF-DISCOVERY, about the author's form of group hyperventilation therapy (which as therapeutic effects similar to psychedelic therapy); LSD PSYCHOTHERAPY, guidelines for psychedelic therapists; and STORMY SEARCH FOR THE SELF, written by Stanislav with his wife Christina, about difficult spontanious psychospiritual awakenings--such as triggered by mystical, near-death, or UFO experiences, and including Christinas's own kundalini/alcoholism crisis--which are often mis-diagnosed as psychosis, and yet have the potential for radical growth and healing.

5-0 out of 5 stars Challenges the existing paradigm

I first encountered Stanislav Grof in the late 'seventies at a seminar held in Pacific Grove, California.He was a featured speaker, and to say that I was impressed would be an understatement.

In this book, he speaks of paradigms--the model of reality that scientists work within, accepting certain basic assumptions.He points out that the Newtonian/Cartesian paradigm (a system of thought based on the work of Isaac Newton and Rene Descartes) is still accepted and the orthodox foundation of precepts in use in psychiatry, psychology, anthropology and medicine.He points out that physics has moved on to a new paradigm: relativity and quantum theory and beyond, while the previously named sciences have languished, and opines that it is time for them to re-examine their fundamental belief structure as well.

Grof said, at the seminar, that he was originally--in Czechoslovakia where he originated--a dyed-in-the-wool Freudian, until he began to perceive difficulties with that approach.He grew from there.He was one of the original medical investigators to use
d-lysergic acid diethylamide in serious psychiatric research, from which he derived some astonishing results.

Grof was formerly Chief of Psychiatric Research at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.He is no lightweight airhead, but rather is a highly qualified, credentialed and credible researcher.This and his other books are well worth your time, if you have the necessary vocabulary and the scientific background to benefit from them.

Grof makes a bold argument that understanding of the perinatal and transpersonal levels changes much of how we view both mental illness and mental health.His research in transpersonal experience evokes serious questions into such areas as reincarnation and the spritual side of the human being.

Joseph H. Pierre [...] ... Read more

4. Integral Psychology: Consciousness, Spirit, Psychology, Therapy
by Ken Wilber
Paperback: 303 Pages (2000-05-16)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$9.87
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Asin: 1570625549
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The goal of an "integral psychology" is to honor and embrace every legitimate aspect of human consciousness under one roof. This book presents one of the first truly integrative models of consciousness, psychology, and therapy. Drawing on hundreds of sources--Eastern and Western, ancient and modern--Wilber creates a psychological model that includes waves of development, streams of development, states of consciousness, and the self, and follows the course of each from subconscious to self-conscious to superconscious. Included in the book are charts correlating over a hundred psychological and spiritual schools from around the world, including Kabbalah, Vedanta, Plotinus, Teresa of Ávila, Aurobindo, Theosophy, and modern theorists such as Jean Piaget, Erik Erikson, Jane Loevinger, Lawrence Kohlberg, Carol Gilligan, Erich Neumann, and Jean Gebser. Integral Psychology is Wilber's most ambitious psychological system to date, and it is already being called a landmark study in human development.
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Customer Reviews (28)

4-0 out of 5 stars A map for the expanse of the Human being
True to the word integral Wilber has done much for bringing together multiple frames to present a more cohesive picture of human beings. Integral Thinking is a must for any practising professional in mental health or helping professions. It allows a way of understanding the context and facets of mental health and wellbeing. It allows a practioner to work with an understanding of surrounding professions and their contribution to treatment.

5-0 out of 5 stars Integral Psychology
Integral Psychology is a must have text that examines the history and most pertinent philosophies of psychology over the years. The book begins with a brief history of psychology. Like every social science, from the beginning psychology has been both criticized and praised for its non-scientific foundation. In this way, early on, theorists searched for an appropriate model of consciousness that could provide some aspect of scientific control. Integral Psychology looks at the various models and popular theories from the pre-modern to post-modern eras. Of course, the icing on the cake is the author's own models based upon integral theory.

Integral Psychology is detailed enough to be the main text for any psychological theory course or as a graduate introduction to integral theory, whether for psychological or ecological purposes. It is a book that should be on the shelves of educators and professionals alike.

4-0 out of 5 stars An integral approach to psychology
This was a very interesting read, which examined the varying theories of psychology and focused on integrating those theories together and then providing an overarching theory that they could fit into, supplied by Wilbur. The author is clearly very well studied in what he discusses and provides some detailed explanations that provide a successful argument for what he's attempting to do. This can be a dense read and jargon heave, especially with some of the words the author has come up with on his own, but don't let that discourage you. I see this work as an essential read for occultists, a way of expanding their understanding and application of psychology to their own practices. The charts at the end of the book are helpful for illustrating what Wilbur is explaining. My only wish is that he could've integrated the charts more into the book, instead of at the back.

5-0 out of 5 stars The unveiling of the structures of consciousness
This book is excellent resource for anyone attempting to find a way through the postmodern miasma of conflicting, if not antagonistic, myriad of possible world views and perspectives.

Wilber's integral methodological pluralism asserts that it is statistically impossible for anyone to be totally wrong.Everyone is at least partially correct. By integrating many points of view it is possible to be less wrong.

It is a scholoarly and uncommonly luminous contibution to the usually less generous landscape of the behavioral sciences.

5-0 out of 5 stars Ego Indoctrination Re-Evaluated
I read this book recently after having completed my prerequisite respective courses for a masters in Transpersonal Studies because it further defined the true potential in store for me as a sojourner through time and space. In lieu of change throughout childhood, adolescence and young adulthood, one element in each of the factes of my personality is perseverence; my EHE as learned through applying the teachings of a perennial philosophy, is truly an 'exceptional human experience' I embrace and honor. Every single thought, action, reaction is a legitimate aspect of my consciousness that which I think is me !

It was fascinating that what I used through clairvoyance, Ken Wilber clearly defined as a 'higher intellectual thinking foundation called, 'vision-logic'. His exciting example is not just seeing each individual tree (good for those trying to hone and develop their attention to detail skills) but the entire forest each tree single-handedly contributes to its special thrivelihood !

In discussing the exceptional human experience from my own sandbox, I found simple attributes, means of affection, and calmness both verbal and physical excites my ego more than ever; while the more complex material of my personna ignites my soul. With the functions of consciousness well understood by someone who studied them, journaled them, battled with them and eventually changed them after his wife passed, Wilber teaches his readers to act, desire, perceive and will yourself to anything and everything.

I was disciplined religiously in the organized fashion handed down by generation to generation of church-attendees, my family was devout, until me. But resigning myself to the confines of organized religion was not my choice, it was an expectation. One day, I could not stand the weight of the mask I was wearing long into teenage years, it struck my innocence and I condemned my own church, the existence of god and hated that grandma was not here with me anymore.

I had been hiding my true spiritual connection because I was looking for acceptance from all, as LEO children generally aspire to, and beginning around the age of seven when I was taught in Sunday school the basic rules to reach our heavenly father, I was questioning-- Why ? the demand for masculinity in the divine sense, Why ? the limitations as to where I can receive sacraments, Why ? the restrictions on bliss, livelihood, atonement, Why? the orders, Why? the chaos if we sense things not of the bible, speak of things not of a religious paradigm, step outside of the box, oh no . . . and Why? the spiritual distance I was feeling in the abandonment of my own transpersonal development?

It was based on the normal state of consciousness such as waking thought, dreaming thought, and sleeping 'new life?' yet my pastor was not prepared for apparition questions, suicidal ideations, spirit-energy-manifestations or the idea that heaven and hell were concepts not actual places. C'mon were you there . . . R u there now telling me of this? He wasn't but grandma, well lets just say she gives me encouragement to use an 'altered state of consciousness' such as meditation and fasting (both Wilber classifies as nonordinary state of consciousness) as avenues to self improvement.

My modes which Ken Wilber defines as either aesthetic, moral or scientific collide erratically with one another often confusing the very basis of my existence. It is in the EHE I was asked to pen back in 2003, that I seeded a fantabulous jorney in which I was my own leader. I was using integral psychology and did not realize the value nor the application process in motion from an outsider-looking-in, but lived it vicariously through a more refined Self.

This book will help you locate, re-evaluate what the ego has limited the spirit too; while holding down the soul that is meant to love vicariously through the body using all states of consciousness. Discover your two selves and challenge them into a groundeded understanding of the 3, 5, 7 or even 108 subdivisions of structures of consciousness and the modes that we compartmentalize them in. Remember if these change constantly, so should our constructs and holding onto negative patterns definitely keep us behind the movement not ahead of it.

So flow do not resist and stay consistent with that which brings you further forward into enlightenment than the last step, the aha-moments are so delightful when realized as I perused satisfied from beginning to end of this incredible mind journey . . .

'till next time, the EnlightenedPsych2, Enlightenment-Advisor at EPN
©2008 enlightenmentpsych.net-- All Rights Reserved ericahidvegi ... Read more

5. Psychosynthesis: A Psychology of the Spirit (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology)
by John Firman, Ann Gila
Paperback: 288 Pages (2002-10)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$25.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0791455343
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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A comprehensive account of Robert Assagioli's psychosynthesis, a type of therapy that seeks to address both spiritual development and psychological healing and growth. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Revelatory
This presentation of the Psychosynthesis therapeutic paradigm gives it depth-psychological kick, and provides tools I've found extremely useful. It lays out a theory relating to 'Primal Wounding' (which need not be interpreted as melodramatically as it sounds), a history of violations of the "I"'s relationship with a deeper and more authentic Self, which we carry around and need to resolve. That approach allows the authors to bring in much useful attachment theory, and to connect it with the trad P_Synth technologies of subpersonalities and the Will.

What's so clever is how the 'wounding' is expressed in terms of relationships with what the authors call 'external unifying centres', which could range from parents to bike clubs: anything external in which we see our identities reflected, or in Wounding, violated. This allows you to connect the personal to the societal, as well as to the developmental, in a way I think is unique, especially for a spiritual approach. The book details well how carrying these 'wounds' (which will be equivalent to energetic blockages if you like to play with that) forms social masks, from beneath which we can try to burst out in addictions and abortive attempts to break free, because the Higher or Truer in us needs to manifest but our structures may not provide the means. When we heal, our external lives and personae will be radically altered, as we quit temporizing.

These have been amongst the most instantly usable ideas I have ever employed for self-knowledge, and they deeply stirred my intuition. I made pages of notes which later produced insight after insight when applied, no matter to what. The beauty of the concept, as with so much in this stream, is its simplicity -- it is extensible in many dimensions, ethics for example, especially when seen alongside the High-Middle-Low Unconscious concept of this school, which brilliantly highlights how the good and the bad are repressed equally. The explanation of the release of genuine positive potential is clear and has proven accurate.

The 'Wounding' concept -- whose name I don't like, but whatever -- can be so flexible; I've applied it to situations which were not obvious 'wounds', but always found such insight, so many previously invisible reframes and ways forward. (Of course it's really _me_ cutting off my own Self and the pleasure of reconnection is both profoundly satisfying and reflected in energetic transformations.) The authors write well on the 'immanent-transcendent' nature of the "I", and include new spins on the traditional P_Synth 'disidentification' exercises.

These concepts will work alongside body energy approaches, for example energy exercises in a Taoist or Reichian style, Rubenfeld Synergy, or bodywork generally. But then I could see them contributing just about anywhere -- if you meditate and want to use a self-therapy, for example, I would pick this book up. (Because of P_Synth's emphasis on the Will, followers of the Hermetic exercises of Franz Bardon, or other will-based magical approaches, will find it spot on.) A psychodynamic therapist, looking for an out-of-the-box-useful link to the transpersonal, would be well-served too. In trauma, I can think of Babette Rothschild case studies (see The Body Remembers Casebook: Unifying Methods and Models in the Treatment of Trauma and PTSD) where it could be applied with great effectiveness. It is very, very generous in its universality, and by not being overly definitive, works with the flow of inspiration.

Other P_Synth books I know are What We May Be and Psychosynthesis Counselling in Action (Counselling in Action series), both of which I've also found useful. I'll certainly be reading the work of the school's founder (Roberto Assagioli, a contemporary of Jung and plainly ahead of his time) shortly, and will delve beyond.

Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Psychosynthesis by Assagioli
Very clear exposition of the fundamentals of Psychosynthesis counselling.I highly recommend this text for anyone studying Psychosynthesis counselling

5-0 out of 5 stars Finally!
I have been searching since adolescence for theories in psychology that would actually be helpful to me. Though there have been many ideas that have helped, it seemed that I had reached a plateau where I felt I was quite self-aware but that just didn't seem to be enough - it didn't heal what was making my life difficult.

Reading this book has helped me see what I need beyond awareness and has also helped me to better understand the people in my life. The concepts of primal wounding, survival personality, subpersonalities, the healing power of empathic connections and a non-linear view of our development
that recognizes that our earlier experiences are not far away and insignificant, are profoundly helpful ideas.

The wounding we have suffered and the subpersonalities that have developed within us, need more than recognition, they need acceptance, inclusion and synthesis which can only happen in an atmosphere of empathy. Then, and only then, can we become authentic, fully conscious people who do not need addictions and compulsions as crutches. No wonder self-awareness is not enough!

This is not my field and I may not be able to clearly convey all the concepts in this book. I may not even understand all of them. There are stories in the book of different people as they go through psychosynthesis therapy that clarify these concepts and how they work in real people. Even though some of the expressions can be a little intimidating for lay people like myself (unifying center, the difference between "I" and "Self"), I truly believe this book can be helpful to anyone who is seeking to understand how to help heal oneself or others.

Thank you, thank you, thank you Assagioli, Gila and Firman!

Just one thing, where can I find a good psychosynthesis therapist? (-:

5-0 out of 5 stars A clear, comprehensive introduction
Psychosynthesis may not be as popularly known as psychoanalysis, depth psychology, etc., but it holds some tremendously powerful keys for self-understanding, self-renewal, and emotional healing that in turn lead to more empathetic and authentic relationships with others.This book is a clear and comprehensive introduction to psychosynthesis, outling such fundamental concepts as primal wounding, lower and higher unconscious, and subpersonalities within a developmental framework.It has stimulated my own growth and I have been recommending this book widely. ... Read more

6. Psychotherapy and Spirit: Theory and Practice in Transpersonal Psychotherapy (S U N Y Series in the Philosophy of Psychology)
by Brant Cortright
Paperback: 272 Pages (1997-09)
list price: US$31.95 -- used & new: US$18.92
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0791434664
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
This volume brings together the major developments in the field of transpersonal psychotherapy. It articulates the unifying theoretical framework and explores the centrality of consciousness for both theory and practice. It reviews the major transpersonal models of psychotherapy, including Wilber, Jung, Washburn, Grof, Ali, and existential, psychoanalytic, and body-centered approaches, and assesses the strengths and limitations of each. The book also examines the key clinical issues in the field. It concludes by synthesizing some of the overarching principles of transpersonal psychotherapy as they apply to actual clinical work. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

4-0 out of 5 stars Informative
Helpful book. Gives a concrete definition of transpersonal psychology. Reviews every many theories in transpersonal psychology giving the limitations and positives of each theory. Goes into detail on many ideas such as altered states of consciousness and spiritual emergency. Written clearly and broken down simply, but uses a transpersonal psychology vernacular.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book
Cortright has taken a psychotherapeutic perspective on transpersonal psychology and has done a great job.Perhaps some of the negative reviews of this book are grounded in him not idolizing Ken Wilber.Wilber is a theorist and not a therapist so what Cortright presents is grounded in truth.He does not attempt to dethrone Wilber however.The book is grounded in solid evidence and will be a contribution to anyone interested in the solid core of transpersonal psychotherapy.He also does a great job in reviewing some of the past transpersonal founders such as Roberto Assagioli.

5-0 out of 5 stars Super Job
This is a very well written and informative book.It focuses more on psychotherapy than on theory.A must read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Chock Full O' Nuggets!
Wow!What a masterful work. This book, while not a fast read, captivated me...line by line...start to finish (and I have bookcases full of unfinished or "skipped-through" books!).It was exciting to confirm what I knew, and then to be led to the cutting edge of this evolving field. I enjoyed the questions posed yet to be explored. I really appreciated his critique of the major theoretical pillars in transpersonal psychology.I was left with greater clarity, especially in his skilfull integration of modern psychology's knowledge with the distilled Ancient wisdom teachings. The read was truly transformational. This book counts among my very few favorites, therefore 5 stars does not give it due status.

4-0 out of 5 stars a brave but flawed attempt at unifying transpersonal thought
Brant Cortright does a good job of surveying 3 decades of transpersonal psychology. He felt that it was high time to bring a critical perspectiveto this field and he has decided to spearhead it. There quite a bit of thetextbook quality about it which one would expect from the Director of theCalifornia Institue of Integrative Studies. He does a great job of incisivewriting without engaging too much in reductionism. I like his writing bestwhen it was anectdotal.Stories about Maslow and Rinpoche really showed thedifference between text and person and the imporatance of keeping themseparate.The overall thrust of the book attempts to show how consciousnessand spirituality are the keynotes in transpersonal psychology and practice.In the final analysis though Cortright sticks to the time honored schism ofchurch and state when comparing therapist and priest. The only problem withthis distancing of the therapist's spirituality is that Cortright does notdefine what a priest or minister actually does(besides the dognmatizing)compared to a transpersonal therapist. After criticizing psychiatry andits' pathological model, he ultimately hides behind a barrier ofprofessionalism thus distancing himself from a deeper discussion of ethicaland moral issues. He does this by becoming old fashioned and sensiblearound the values of tradition in psychiatry. "Most transpersonaltherapists would not teach a client any spiritual philosophy much inkeeping with standard therapeutic tradition." (p.221) He also singlesout Psychosynthesis for some pretty dismissive commentary while holding upothers like Hameed Ali. This is quite a serious contradiction but I'm surethat it reflects a bias deeper than he wants to share with us.So, afterspending the whole book talking about spirituality as the cornerstone inthe Fourth Force of Psychology, he warns that it is not possible really tointegrate this in the real world. Workshps or retreats possibly but notyour everyday third part covered therapy. That is where the spirit in"Psychotherapy and Spirit" fizzles. Too bad becasue for the mostpart it was a damned good read. ... Read more

7. Samadhi: Self Development in Zen, Swordsmanship, and Psychotherapy (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology)
by Mike K. Sayama
Paperback: 170 Pages (1985-10-01)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$13.50
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Asin: 0887061478
Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars Fun Book if Read Uncritically
I've had this small book for quite some time and it has always been fun to re-read. The book was published by State University Press in N.Y. as part of the SUNY Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology. We learn more about the author from a blurb on the SUNY Press website: "Mike Sayama graduated from Yale University summa cum laude and received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Michigan. He has been training in Zen and the martial arts for more than ten years under Tanouye Tenshin Roshi. Currently, he is a member of the board of directors and the educational staff of the Institute for Zen Studies in Hawaii."
OK, fair enough. We might need such a smart and well-educated guide, for the subject of transpersonal psychology in general seems to be dangerous territory for exploration...I mean, science has a hard enough time with *personal* psychology, much less transpersonal... and this book bravely tries to navigate through the minefields without blowing everybody up (sorry for the metaphor, I just made that up). We need to applaud a willingness to take on this adventure with the remarkable confidence Mr. Sayama shows in the book. However, I agree with reviewer "Crazy Fox" here that the book is very disjointed and the Zen anecdotes can't be taken seriously as historical facts. With that in mind, let's take a look:

The first part of the book gives selective excerpts of sayings attributed to famous figures, such as Shakyamuni Buddha, Bodhidharma, Hui-Neng, Lin Chi, Hakuin, etc., jumping to modern-day figures associated with the Chozen-ji school located in Oahu, Hawaii (i.e., Sogen Omori and Tanouye Tenshin). Evidently, the intent by the author is to show some kind of "lineage" from the founder of Buddhism straight through to the current-day Tenryu-ji line of Rinzai Zen. There is no need to wade into issues of the historical accuracy of such a "direct lineage", the creation of Zen (Chan) "lineages" in olden times in China is a product of vast retro revisioning and image-making, as modern scholars have often pointed out.

And not just the creation of Chan lineages...in fact, the entire history of Buddhism is full of image-building on famous figures. Take, for instance, the old tale of Shakyamuni ("Sage of the Shakyas"...) sitting under the Bodhi tree and becoming enlightened when he saw the Morning Star. Supposedly he proclaimed something to the effect of, "How wonderful! How wonderful! All mountains, rivers, and the great earth possess the identical wisdom and virtue of the Tathagata". Now this is a charming story, dutifully repeated countless times in Zen sermons, but it has zero historical value. Putting words into the mouths of old venerable figures is, frankly, a common habit of later Chinese writers, so much so that much in Chinese history can be relegated to "wild history".
Another example of Shakyamuni's re-imaging is the old traditional view that the Avatamsaka Sutra supposedly describes his initial enlightenment experience. One can easily find this assumed- without any critical comment- throughout the vast Buddhist devotional literature. This can hardly be true, however, since the concepts reflect a more historically mature period of Mahayana development. So we see here how Buddhist history is very much a myth-making process.

And the stories of famous Zen figures that author Sayama gives are typical Zen anecdotes that are charming to read, but shouldn't necessarily be taken as verbatim words out of the mouths of these old Chan legendary figures. As modern scholarship shows, the famous "recorded sayings" genre is more a product of the later Song Period than actual more-or-less verbatim recollections of the T'ang Period. But verbatim is probably how Sayama wants you to take them...anecdotes were selected from each figure in the "lineage", all presumably chirping, in unison, the same theme of the "seamless", non-dual nature of reality. In essence, hence, this is a book located within the purely devotional, popular side of Buddhist lore.

In this context, then, let us look at the main title of the book: "Samadhi". This old Indian term is re-visioned by Sayama, who interprets it thus (again from a summary on the SUNY Press blurb): "The key to self-development, says Mike Sayama, is the experience of Samadhi, a state of relaxed concentration in which the individual neither freezes out of fear nor clings due to desire. Simply stated, samadhi is the free flow of vital energy within the body and between the body and the universe".

We'll forgive Sayama for sounding just a little new-agey here, as similar terminology is often spouted by new-agers seeking "mind/body unity" and so on...but Chozen-ji students in Hawaii presumably really do seek the aim of realizing a unity of body and mind through various practices, such as traditional Rinzai zazen and various "Ways", such as kyudo (ritualized Japanese archery), aikido, calligraphy, taijiquan, body-work, etc.. Also heavily emphasized, from descriptions, is the traditional Japanese culture of "kiai" (...think cultivation of physical/spiritual "energy" in a broad sense).

The book goes on to present seemingly similar lessons from transpersonal psychology, which might be a stretch of the imagination, maybe of Sayama's imagination. The author talks about some of the rather startling techniques of famous psychiatrist Milton Erickson, for instance, but it is not clear how Erickson's techniques relate directly to the theme Sayama is trying to develop, which is the non-dual nature of reality (as presumably seen through Zen eyes)...last time I checked, Erickson had no Zen training and really comes from a totally different environment. Truth is, when one really starts asking why Sayama links together these seemingly disparate philosophies as good examples of his own, one is at a loss to see the connections. The only similarity I could see between Erickson and, say, some of the old Chan masters is perhaps they were "unorthodox". Milton had "unorthodox" techniques; Lin Chi's behavior was perhaps "unorthodox" with his shouts and slapping. I'm not too sure, however, how appropriate somebody's "unorthodox" behavior is for an illustration of the "non-dual nature of Reality", it could be they were just eccentric. But that's the beauty of transpersonal psychology- one is evidently free to throw in whatever one is interested in, all into one big smorgasbord of mish-mash. It's like eating at an all-you-can-eat buffet, just go down the line and pick out whatever you like and hey, it all eventually goes down into the same stomach...

Sayama also includes descriptions of body-work techniques, such as Rolfing, Feldenkrais, etc., and indeed body-work techniques (such as trigger-point therapy) seem to be part of the curriculum at the Chozen-ji school in Hawaii. Well and good, but it is not readily apparent how various techniques of massage and bodily tension-release techniques relate directly to acquiring a "seamless" non-dual perception of reality. Unless we postulate, as we should here, that mind and body are "one", so evidently releasing bodily tension helps promote spiritual insight too. That is the premise here, anyway. Unfortunately, if taken literally, this would infer that anyone who regularly underwent some kind of massage or body-work would be a spiritual giant, so obviously there are a few holes in this theory...

Lastly, let's talk a bit about the Chozen-ji school in Oahu. Founded by Japanese swordsman, calligrapher, and Zen teacher Omori Sogen, it's premise could perhaps be summarized as "zazen plus the Ways". This, of course, is an old ideal from Japanese samurai culture, which the Chozen-ji school attempts to put into practice today. Such is Omori's legacy. However, this charming ideal needs to be tempered a bit by some dark history regarding the founder (Omori), as readers of Brian Victoria's works (i.e., "Zen War Stories") knows. Omori, for all of his Zen wisdom, alas, was a zealot right-winger in Japan holding aggressive ultra-nationalistic political views, with all of the negative connotation that involves. So, readers, don't venerate these figures beyond reasonable skepticism.

As for Sayama's book, it's fun to read, but not a well-crafted book. I wish the author was as "seamless" in his selection of appropriate examples as he is promoting a "seamless" view of reality :-). Three stars, for fun reading.

2-0 out of 5 stars Zen and the Art of Slicing Folks Up in a Mentally Healthy Way
I tried to like this book, I really did. The author's attempt to integrate Zen Buddhist meditation techniques with the insights of psychology (especially that of Jung and Maslow) seems to be very sincere and should have been interesting...it may even work as therapy, I can't say. But the first half of the book, focusing on the Zen half of his program, is utterly ahistorical; by the late 1980's we should know better than to discuss Bodhidharma and the legends about him as if he and they were literally and historically factual. The author also tries to fit way too much info into this half (of a short book at that), so that the overall effect sometimes is a string of great soundbites by the great Zen Masters (more or less plausible historically). It would have been better to focus more, I'd say. The way the author draws out a lineage here from the Buddha to Bodhidharma, Hui-neng, Lin-chi, Hakuin, Omori Sogen, Tanouye Tenshin, and Mike Sayama (himself) is a standard rhetorical tactic on the part of Zen but still seems embarrassingly self-legitimizing here.

The second half of the book tries to cover the psychotherapy angle. There are some truly interesting anecdotes here about psychotherapists like Milton Erickson and Nick Cummings, but after all is said and done it doesn't integrate well with the first half of the book (contrary to the author's plan). Yes, "Mushin" ("no-mind") seems similar to "the Unconscious" based on the surface meaning of the words, but only the most fast & loose treatment would equate them in such a facile manner.

The martial arts and Zen aspect of the book is downright creepy. Granted this book was written in the innocent (naive) days before Brian Victoria's "Zen at War", still alarms should be going off when a Buddhist monk tells a guy "Then the sword meant to strike you will instead become the sword which will strike the enemy" (p.70). So much for that good old Buddhist Compasssion. The story of the swordsman Miyamoto Musashi at the conclusion is supposed to inspire us with the ideal towards which Sayama is pointing us, but subtract the mist of romanticism generated by temporal distance and you get a grisly tale of wanton violence for its own sake. This is not a helpful model of self-development no matter how jazzed up with Zen jargon and psychobabble. ... Read more

8. Integral Psychology: Yoga, Growth, and Opening the Heart (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology)
by Brant Cortright
Paperback: 244 Pages (2007-04-05)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$25.36
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Asin: 0791470725
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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A bold new view of the human psyche, integrating Eastern and Western approaches. ... Read more

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5-0 out of 5 stars A highly recommended supplementary text especially recommended for psychologists and psychotherapists
Brant Cortright (Professor of Psychology, California Institute of Integral Studies) presents Integral Psychology: Yoga, Growth, and Opening the Heart, a daring new approach to psychology and healing that seeks to learn from Eastern methods that focus on the inner being and the psyche's spiritual foundation, as well as the Western methods that focus on the outer being and the injuries of body, heart, mind, and self. Chapters apply classical East Indian yogas as a means to perceive psychotherapy: psychotherapy as behavior change or karma yoga, psychotherapy as mindfulness practice or jnana yoga, and psychotherapy as opening the heart or bhakti yoga. An approach that combines the best of both worlds for psychological and spiritual healing and self-improvement lies at the heart of Integral Psychology. Though Integral Psychology touches upon spirituality, the concepts presented are emphatically not meant to convert the reader to any specific religion, but rather to promote healing and wellness for patients of all faiths and cultural backgrounds. The result is a highly recommended supplementary text especially recommended for psychologists and psychotherapists.

5-0 out of 5 stars Psychology's Future
I frequently felt touched by the obvious sensitivity and care taken by Dr. Cortright in writing "Integral Psychology: Yoga, Growth and Opening the Heart".

"Integral Psychology" reaches beyond the bounds of empirical science to embrace the spiritual, and indeed the soul. Dr. Cortright insists this bold extension is essential for psychology if it is ever going to discover the defining essence of the human being.In looking to psychology's future, Dr. Cortright proposes a synthesis of western psychology and eastern spirituality.This synthesis is based on the life work of the great twentieth century Indian sage Sri Aurobindo.

Bringing western psychology and eastern spirituality together facilitates opening the heart. Both western psychology and eastern spirituality aspire to open the heart, although, as Dr. Cortright explains, each opens different areas of the heart.To open the heart fully they need each other.Opening the heart clears the way to discover the soul, the eternal core of the human psyche.

"Integral Psychology" is not a religious or dogmatic book.It is a thoughtful characterisation of the psychology traditions of the east and the west, with a result that is inclusive and respectful of both.This book challenges the rational mind and entices those serious about psychology and psychotherapy toward a deeper and expanded perspective.

Dr. Cortright gives us a new look at practical psychology.From this perspective, it is within our human potential to know our true self and the most profound purpose of physical existence.Reflecting the optimism of Sri Aurobindo, "Integral Psychology" embraces the notion, basic to eastern psychology, but revolutionary in western psychology, "that our deepest identity is a self-existent joy, love and light."

Our most essential identity is our soul, which is itself a spark of Divine love.Congruent with our deepest human aspirations, integral psychology aims to move us into alignment with our soul's consciousness.Expressing this unification in daily life is the next step in human potential and the goal of integral psychology.

5-0 out of 5 stars Understanding Integral Psychology
Integral Psychology: Yoga, Growth and Opening the Heart, by Brant Cortright

Having read Dr. Cortright's earlier Psychotherapy and Spirit, I was pleased to discover that Integral Psychology was available this year, and read it immediately upon receiving it.It's been ten years since the earlier publication, and the author has [from my long-distance observation] made important progress in his spiritual growth, opening of the heart, and writing style during this time.

The book is based upon Sri Aurobindo's complex Integral understanding, and though it focuses upon psychological aspects of that theory, the spiritual and developmental features are also mentioned.Through Ken Wilbur's use of the term `Integral', many have become interested in the concept; Dr. Cortright presents a fuller explanation of how Aurobindo's thinking can be related to psychotherapeutic theory and practice.

It's a pleasure to read someone who is so steeped in an Eastern approach, and who can relate it to contemporary psychological, clinical issues.For example, whole chapters link behavior change therapy to karma yoga, mindfulness to jnana yoga, and heart-opening to bhakti yoga.In these and other chapters, sometimes with clinical examples, Dr. Cortright demonstrates his superior integration of Aurobindo's original theory, his own adaptations, and his use of such understanding in psychotherapy.

Some readers will be most touched by the early chapter, The Core Wounding of Our Time.Based in part on ego-psychology and self-psychology, Dr. Cortright suggests that "The core wounding of our time is a rip in the very fabric of the self", and goes on to suggest that it effects the mind, higher-, central-, and lower-emotional aspects, as well as the body and spirit.This essentially diagnostic chapter is an important precursor to the later therapeutic orientation.Others may be more interested in the concept and approach to spiritual emergency; since I've had little clinical experience with this proposed entity I found it less compelling.

More broadly, for the reader interested in the possibility of integrating the integral theory of Sri Aurobindo and the thinking of a contemporary clinician and Professor [California Institute of Integral Studies], this book is highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars What a Map!
Brant Cortright's Integral Psychology was for me a reader's digest version of the entire history of Psychology and Transpersonal Psychology into the even deeper realms of our being with Shri Aurobindo's " Integral Yoga".His "map" showed me, in a remarkably concise way, the ever deepening paths of the west and the profoundly deep offering from the east ofgrowing through the opening of our hearts and souls. For the beginner, what an overview this is and for the advanced one, what an acknowledgment of spirit and matter in it's evolution! ... Read more

9. The Primal Wound: A Transpersonal View of Trauma, Addiction, and Growth (S U N Y Series in the Philosophy of Psychology)
by John Firman
Paperback: 296 Pages (1997-04-25)
list price: US$31.95 -- used & new: US$20.10
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Asin: 0791432947
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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The primal wound is the result of a violation we all suffer in various ways, beginning in early childhood and continuing throughout life. Because we are treated not as individual, unique human beings but as objects, our intrinsic, authentic sense of self is annihilated. This primal wounding breaks the fundamental relationships that form the fabric of human existence: the relationship to oneself, to other people, to the natural world, and to a sense of transpersonal meaning symbolized in concepts such as the Divine, the Ground of Being, and Ultimate Reality. In this book Firman and Gila apply object relations theory, self-psychology, transpersonal psychology, and psychosynthesis to the issues of psychological wounding, healing, and growth and show how this wounding can be redeemed through therapy and through changing one's way of living. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Ever person over 30 should read this book.......
If you have lived your life in the adult world for any period of time, it's time you read this book.Take a look at your emotions and relationships from a new perspective!This book gives us insight into why we behave the way we do, and then suggests ways to integrate ourselves into a broader perspective that allows us to change those things that are making us unhappy.

I sent this book to relatives in the US and abroad, and I know that it is providing us all with great information to help us heal our lives and move beyond real unhappiness and discontent.

It's a psychology book, and is not a quick read.But it makes a lot of sense and pushes you along.The references to other work are helpful and useful as well.

Good reading!

5-0 out of 5 stars the most lucid book on the basic problem of being human
Jonh Firman's "The Primal Wound" (with help from partner Ann Gila), is definitely not just another self-help book. It is the book toread if you want to understand the deep dynamics of growing up and thewounds or the primal wound that you carry.Using the wonderfullypost-Jungian model of Psychosynthesis, Firman details in clear and simplelanguage the development of wounds and how they create a survivalpersonality that is different from one's authentic personality. The book isa gem, full of ideas from amny sources.The integration of them will causetranspersonal theorists to take a closer look at what psychosythesis theoryhas to offer.This book shows that it has a lot to offer because it isintegrative and synthesizing in nature. This dynamic is part of thestructure of Psychosynthesis and Firman's book proves that we haven't heardthe last of him. There is a wealth of material here and wisdom as powerfulas it gets. ... Read more

10. Transpersonal Psychologies: Perspectives on the Mind from Seven Great Spiritual Traditions
 Paperback: 486 Pages (1992-01)
list price: US$17.00 -- used & new: US$199.42
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0062508563
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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5-0 out of 5 stars excellent overview of various traditions
transpersonal psychologies is a compilation of various psychologies edited by charles tart.tart wrote 3 chapters on altered states of consciousness.the rest of the chapters are written by different authors all very knowledgeable about their disciplines.topics include; zen buddhism, yoga psychology, gurdjieff, sufism, christian mystical traditions and western magic.the zen buddhism by claire myers owens, gurdjieff by kathleen riordan and western magic by william gray are my favorite topics and readings.i highly recommend this book to read and understand various diverse views on psychological thought. ... Read more

11. Up from Eden: A Transpersonal View of Human Evolution
by Ken Wilber
Paperback: 421 Pages (2007-05-16)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$8.80
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Asin: 0835607313
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Wilber traces humanity's cultural and spiritual evolution. New Foreword by the author. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars An Inspired Classic !!
Combining contemplative inspiration with the work of Erich Neumann, and a good dose of advanced psychoanalysis (Particurally Norman Brown), Wilber delivers to mankind in a single volume answers to most cutting edge questions of life - Who are we? Why are we here? How did we get here? Why are things the way they are? Where are we going?

This is an altogether brilliant synthesis of the concepts from the non-dual schools (Plotinus, Aurobindo, Rig Veda, etc), with the more recent discoveries from emergent evolution, and the evolution of consciousness (Neumann's / The Origins and History of Consciousness).

The story is all at once fascinating and compelling, as Wilber takes us on a detailed tour of mankind's journey from pre-self awareness, to self-awareness, and the concomiant implications for Spirit, as it strives to fully manifest itself through the awakening soul of mankind.

Without question, one of the greatest, and most significant books ever written.

5-0 out of 5 stars Ken Wilber - Genius
Up From Eden is a brilliant account of the evolution of human consciousness. It is scholarly yet easy to read and understand.

5-0 out of 5 stars Painfully Inspiring
The sensitive enough reader may come away form this book with a lot more than a coherent and vivid look back at the evolution of human consciousness, based solely on the amassed evidence of anthropology. That alone might be enough, but for myself, I got something more; a strange and deeply haunting sadness.

It is so painfully clear how much and long and arduously mankind has aspired to discover who he/she is. How many billions an billions and billions of human beings lived and struggled and aspired, got confused, hoped, failed and died to get us to where we are now today . . . and still seemingly so very far away from what has always been with us, pushing us and drawing us onward, even unto this very moment?

This book also clearly demonstrates the complete reversal of the traditional and historical interpretations of the advent of "original sin" and "samsara" laying to rest an improper "romantic" view forever.

We did not arise out of some paradisiacal Eden, nor suddenly "move too much" and find ourselves lost in smasara. Rather, the evidence is clear, there was no such place, and nor does our salvation or liberation lie in our collective past. Mankind, as the result of evolution, AWOKE in consciousness to a world of sin, error, imperfection and suffering; a world which existed as such long before he realized it. And in that moment he/she/we were actually, for the very first time REALIZING Spirit; a Spirit creation "fell" from long, long ago . . .

5-0 out of 5 stars The Painful History of Mankind- and a way Beyond...
After the success of his initial works (The Spectrum of Consciousness and No Boundary), Ken Wilber gave his "spectrum" model a serious reappraisal and found it woefully lacking.It seemed that he had made a mistake that he goes on to chide others for in his later books- he confused prerational myths with transcendental truths, and confused the spiritual fall with the scientific fall.He makes up for his previous errors with "Up From Eden: A Transpersonal View of Human Evolution".

In UFE, Wilber covers the historical development of consciousness, from the animalistic/uroboric level to the typhonic, and then to the development of the Solar ego, the disassociation of the mind from the body, and the development of the rational mind.But he takes it a step further as well, discussing the development of transrational consciousness throughout history, and discussing the differences between magical fetishism and psychic Nirmanakaya and between mythic religion and subtle archetype.Drawing upon Freud, Jung, Campbell, and a ream of Anthropoligical and Archaeological data, Wilber paints us a fascinating picture of society, it's history, and it's discontents.Lastly, he finishes the book by discussing his ideas for a politics of the transrational, in a fascinating chapter titled "Republicans, Democrats, and Mystics".

As far as Wilber's older books go, this is one not to be missed.Although some concepts are better elucidated in Wilber's later "Sex, Ecology, Spirituality", nowhere does he draw on more anthropological support for his theories than in "Up From Eden".

5-0 out of 5 stars A history of transcendence...cool!
What a great book. It's the human evolution of consciousness. Ken has shown in his other books how we progress through several, well defined, stages of congnitive growth. In this book he discusses the same stages but with the period in history that they are associated with. He also keeps track of the highest achievers of each period. ... Read more

12. The Cosmic Game: Explorations of the Frontiers of Human Consciousness (S U N Y Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology) (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology)
by Stanislav Grof
Paperback: 310 Pages (1998-03-19)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$18.51
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Asin: 0791438767
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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[Grof] attacks both his subject and readers like a commissionsalesman trying to close a much- needed deal. The resulting book isless about the mystical experience than about hubris and betrays theauthor's willingness to steamroller the reader's judgment. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars a new approach o the mysteries of life
joining the split between ancient wisdom and our scientific times, a deligthful text about the mysteries of existence, and some interesting answers about our nature like human beings in this loving planet

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book
Grof has written a super book that describes the many aspects of spiritual development.He aligns his core thoughts along the thoughts of Ken Wilber.This how ever is not Wilberian book and has many original insights, not mere theory.Grof is a gifted psychiatrist with no axe to grind.He, unlike Wilber who believes his theories hold and explain everyone else's theories, is much more open and unthreatened.He brings different viewpoints to his writing, without claiming to be the end all or have the last word.Get this book, you will not be let down.

5-0 out of 5 stars getting to know you, getting to know all about you.
this book is a must read for anyone sincerely searching self knowledge. it covers much ground regarding the magnificence of life and existence itself. breathtakingly deep and broad in its scope: personal experience of "God", ways to find "God". the validity of personal mystical experience, ways of getting there, the reason evil exists, the nature of ultimate good, the list goes on and on. Stanislav Grof is a master of the transpersonal and speaks "as one having authority". i can't possibly rate this book highly enough. buy it! its a feast for the mind as well as the heart.

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing
The book amazed me up to a certain level. It was very thorough and I found the topics pretty interesting. While searching for some answers about who we are, this book has convinced me that maybe the questions were and are wrong. I recommend everyone interested in parapsychology, reincarnationand issues like that read this book. Especially the chapter about good and evil was full of ideasthat had never crossed my mind. Very fulfilling.

5-0 out of 5 stars A link between science and ancient mysteries
Grof tries to answer the basic questions about the nature of reality depending on his 40 year research on psychedelics and consciousness. In his attempt he links the pre-industrial cultural flora with modern scientificfindings. An amazing and shcoking book for those who assume to live in amaterial world. ... Read more

13. Psychology of the Future: Lessons from Modern Consciousness Research (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology)
by Stanislav Grof
Paperback: 345 Pages (2000-07)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$19.37
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Asin: 0791446220
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Summarizes Grof's experiences and observations from more than forty years of research into non-ordinary states of consciousness. ... Read more

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5-0 out of 5 stars Psychology of the Future
It's rare to find a textbook that is both extremely informative and enjoyable to read. Psychology of the Future has to be one of the first ones I've ever come across. I think that textbooks are often like lecturers. The good ones provide information that you want to learn about. After the lecture or book is complete, you have a few tidbits of knowledge that you can relate to your own life or work. The great ones, though, provide examples so that you can immediately see the potential uses of these theories and concepts. You leave these lectures or books filled with ideas and an eagerness to learn more about these subjects.

Psychology of the Future is definitely in the later category. Each chapter brought an entirely new concept, theory, or method (from the potential biographical nature of birth experiences to underlying causes of emotional disorder through the types of spiritual emergencies to death experiences) that was just as engaging as the previous one. By the time I was done the book, I had a list of topics that I wanted to look at in greater depth and a number of possibilities about how these concepts could relate to my current work.

2-0 out of 5 stars Old School
Grof used to be a pioneer, and it is true he did a good deal to advance certain theories in the 60's and 70's. However, that is essentially where he stopped. One author indicated Grof "used" to be a psychoanalyst, but really he still is. He never got over his "birth trauma" which he has been spouting off about for 30 years. Very psychoanalytic stuff, very old school. Also, Grof remains a medical-model thinker in the world of consciousness exploration. So, he is always detached, taking notes, but not essentially participating in the realm of personal transformation (hence 30 years of working through his birth trauma). He is not the Shaman, he is the one taking pictures and EKG's of the Shaman. To him the Shamanic world is what we experience in an altered state of consciousness, but for the Shaman the world he visits is valid and real. That is a big difference. This applies equally to transformation of consciousness such as samadhi, kundalini, dharmakaya, whatever - Grof studied it as an object of study, not as an experiential reality.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
In my opinion, Stanislav Grof is the best, or at least one of the best, in his field of study.I have read most of his books and participated in a Holotropic Breathwork seminar weekend in Vermont.I highly recommend any educated person to familiarize him/herself with Grof's work (all of his books very informative and really make one think) and try a Holotropic Breathwork session.

5-0 out of 5 stars An easy introduction to Grof
This was my introduction to stanislav's ideas.This book is almost a chapter by chapter introduction to all of Grof's different areas of research and writing.The written experiences of holotropic states are entertaining and informative.This book adds a needed understanding to psychology by examining consciousness around the time of birth.The author is obviously well versed on many topics, and presents sound logic and arguments throughout.Holotropic breathwork might be very useful for anyone suffering from their personality (especially to those that are fear based).This book is a relative easy introduction to Grof's ideas, and a welcomed step to combining science with unbiased spirituality.

5-0 out of 5 stars Consciousnessresearch on the cutting edge

I first encountered Stanislav Grof in the late 'seventies at a seminar held in Pacific Grove, California. He was a featured speaker, and to say that I was impressed would be an understatement.

In this book, he discusses transpersonal psychology, involving a shift in awareness.Our psychologists and psychiatrists need to engage themselves in this transformational system and get outside the accepted paradigm of the current model of reality that scientists work within today, accepting certain basic assumptions, and move on to the equivalent of the quantum theory of consciousness.

He points out in another of his books, Beyond the Brain, that the Newtonian/Cartesian paradigm (a system of thought based on the work of Isaac Newton and Rene Descartes) is still accepted and the orthodox foundation of precepts in use in psychiatry, psychology, anthropology and medicine. He points out that physics has moved on to a new paradigm: relativity and quantum theory and beyond, while the previously named sciences have languished, and opines that it is time for psychiatrists and psychologists to re-examine their fundamental belief structure as well.

Grof said, at the seminar, that he was originally--in Czechoslovakia where he originated--a dyed-in-the-wool Freudian, until he began to perceive difficulties with that approach. He grew from there. He was one of the original medical investigators to use d-lysergic acid diethylamide in serious psychiatric research, from which he derived some astonishing results.

Grof was formerly Chief of Psychiatric Research at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He is no lightweight airhead, but rather is a highly qualified, credentialed and credible researcher. This and his other books are well worth your time, if you have the necessary vocabulary and the scientific background to benefit from them.

Grof makes a bold argument that understanding of the perinatal and transpersonal levels changes much of how we view both mental illness and mental health. His research in transpersonal experience evokes serious questions into such areas as reincarnation and the spritual side of the human being.

Joseph (Joe) Pierre,

author of The Road to Damascus: Our Journey Through Eternity
and other books

... Read more

14. Higher Wisdom: Eminent Elders Explore the Continuing Impact of Psychedelics (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology.)
Paperback: 267 Pages (2005-09-30)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$26.88
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Asin: 0791465187
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Interviews with fourteen pioneers in psychedelic research. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great interviewbook with mindexpanded pioneers
This thoughtprovoking and beautiful book presents interviews with some of the people who were pioneers in the (at that time legal) research into psychedelics. Most of them holding academic degrees and the finest credentials. And almost all of them having experienced a profound and lasting change in their outlook on the world, towards an appreciation of our basic spiritual nature.

Amongst the interviewed are giants like Stanislav Grof,Ram Dass and Albert Hofman, and as always it's a great treat to read their words of wisdom. But there is certainly also very fine entries by perhaps lesser known figures like the fine Gary Fisher, who talks at lenght about the importance of sustaining your druginspired insights with regular spiritual practice.

Interestingly enough the two with the greatest mainstream credentials: the anthropologist Peter Furst and the scholar of Religion Huston Smith seem two be the ones with least to contribute. Smith obviously not realizing that he didn't have the courage (and grace) to take the final jump when he came close to the abyss of the Beyond. A jump most of the others seem to have taken.

All 14 come across as healthy, strong, integrated individuals, in themselves good arguments for the lasting benefit of controlled and sincere use of mindexpanding substances.

The great villain is of course the notorious Timothy Leary, the 'hero' of my youth, but today it's easy to see how much damage his immature messianic attitude caused. Not least to a lot of unprepared young people.
But he also gave the authorities the perfect excuse to treat psychedelics like any other drug, an attitude the medias unfortunately has adopted ever since, making it very hard to hope that the religious/spiritual possibilities of these drugs will be recognized and utilized in a positive way. Although they could actually make the world a whole lot better and point people towards true and spiritual values.

All in all a well produced and presented book and a joyous, uplifting read , sad though that ignorance prevales the way it does concerning this subject.

This book certainly lives up to it's title as a source of "Higher Wisdom".

5-0 out of 5 stars How it all began
Roger Walsh and Charles Grob have edited a fine text concerning the impact of psychedelics.It is a very important and interesting book in this field.It is a book detailing how psychedelics became an intensely studied topic in psychiatry and psychology.Beginning with the synthesis of LSD by Albert Hofmann, its intial use was to enable psychiatrists to experience a temporary psychosis first hand.This would let them have greater understanding of the phenomenological experience of their patients.Yet LSD and other psychedelics were soon discovered to be valuable treatment modalities in psychotherapy by themselves, particularly in deconstructing certain defense mechanisms.The elders who participated in this book, were very sincere and responsible in their use of psychedelics.They did their work under controlled conditions that would be therapeutic to those ingesting the drug.This is not a book about the recreational use fo psychedelics but their therapeutic, even spiritual use.

This is a must read book for all individuals interested in learning about the value of these drugs beyond recreational use. I had no idea concerning this topic other than a dislike for 'hippies' who used the drugs and termed me and my friends baby killers for going to Vietnam.The book greatly expanded my understanding of the time and the real benefits surrounding psychedelics.The editors do a fine job of condensing the interviews to make the book extremely readable.I give it 5 stars.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Psychedelic Resource for Every Library
If I were to teach a course about psychedelics, the first book I would have my students read is Higher Wisdom. Edited by Roger Walsh and Charles Grob, this gem of a book provides in-depth interviews with 14 psychedelic luminaries. Collectively, their published books, papers, lectures, and research reports would take up a significant amount of shelf space.

Fortunately for those of us who don't have the time to read through such a treasure trove of information, Grob and Walsh have distilled the pure essence of the work of these elders into a series of remarkable interviews. To be honest, I wasn't expecting to be carried away by this book, because I thought I already knew a lot about almost everyone the editors interviewed. I was wrong. Before I knew it, I lost track of time and was transported back to the days when incredible breakthroughs were being made by these pioneers of consciousness exploration.

Although the interviews are arranged under the general categories of research, psychotherapy, culture & consciousness, and religious implications, I didn't read it front to back. Instead, I began by first reading the interviews of people I knew the best. As I read, I quickly became aware of what a valuable resource I was holding in my hands. Here in a single volume were the "headlines" and best stories of some people whose work will one day be seen as the bedrock of all future psychedelic studies.

Higher Wisdom works on several levels. Psychedelic researchers and explorers may find in it clues to puzzles they have yet to solve. Additionally, it is a work of history that pulls together the stories of a small group of people, largely unknown to most of the world, who made breakthroughs in consciousness research that are for the most part unparalleled today. In addition to the interviews, the editors, along with Gary Bravo, have written several short essays that pull these disparate stories together, placing the work of these eminent elders into a focused historical context. Another useful feature the editors included is an index split in two parts, a Name Index and a Subject Index. While this may seem like a trivial matter, it is a nice touch that many will appreciate.

The split index reveals the interconnections among this small band of researchers, as well as illuminates the influence of a few pioneers who had died before these interviews took place. I like to think of them as ghosts who continue to look over the shoulders of these early explorers. Interestingly, some of the ghosts have more index entries than the subjects of the interviews, and they don't all come across in the most positive light, as these very candid conversations reveal.

As to the appropriateness of the title, Higher Wisdom, consider this thought from Myron Stolaroff: "Ultimately, true liberation in the Buddhist sense is reaching wholeness, where you are totally at peace and intimate with everything that exists. If you leave out EVEN ONE person, you've left out part of yourself; you can't be really whole until you've absolutely accepted EVERY living creature."

The emphasis in that quote was added by me . . . and for me. It is something I am still struggling to put into practice. My bet is that you will also find a great deal of wisdom in this fine little book. I highly recommend it. ... Read more

15. Transpersonal Knowing: Exploring the Horizon of Consciousness (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology)
Paperback: 341 Pages (2000-07)
list price: US$31.95 -- used & new: US$26.98
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Asin: 0791446166
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great reference
I have a background in the subject, found it to be a great collection.Even for those without previous background, a very useful and expanding book.Enlivening.

5-0 out of 5 stars Knowledge and Knowing
This is not a psychology book, but rather a text that should be read by anyone who is seriously interested in inquiry.As a teacher of research, it is no surprise to me that students generally dislike research classes.The academic view has become so focused on teaching methods for constructing knowledge that the actual experience of knowing has been quite forgotten.The contributors to this book remind us of the joy and liberation that can be experienced in the process of inquiry.

4-0 out of 5 stars Talking about the ineffable.
Today psychologists nip closely at the heals of lawyers and doctors as top parasites in the lower intestine of public misfortune.There are nevertheless still a few dedicated people in the field who avoid the institutionalized witch-doctor clap-trap of this psuedo-science and approach human behavior head-on, pun intended, by looking at the raw data that is present immediately to all of us, human consciousness.What is the business of human consciousness?Their answer, "knowing", directly, intuitively and unencumbered by the prejudice of cyclical neuroses or circular rationalization.What are the limits of this consciousness/knowing continuum?There are none to be found anywhere.And, this is more more than a logical conclusion, it is an experiential, experimental conclusion.The editors, particularly Kaisa Puhakka, have no gimmicks of popular self-help to pander, no nine hundred numbers backed by Taro cards.They don't even offer statistics or new psychy buzz words.Yet, they have only language to talk about that which is basically ineffable.And for that, they do a more than servicable job of copernicus-izing psychology starting from the inside out. ... Read more

16. Transpersonal Psychology in Psychoanalytic Perspective (Suny Series in the Philosophy of Psychology)
by Michael Washburn
Paperback: 384 Pages (1994-07-01)
list price: US$28.95 -- used & new: US$22.06
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Asin: 0791419541
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent approach
Michael Washburn's approach to transpersonal psychology is excellent in many ways. His synthesis of Freudian, Jungian and Wilberian theories, along with Christian and eastern mysticism draws an incredibly rich spectrum of human evolution. Although it seems to be based just on theoretical knowledge and not on empirical one, his ideas are so intelligent and have such precission that I wonder if the books mentions on the bibliography are his only sources. In fact, I think the last chapters lack some refereces to the source where his theory is based upon. However, it's a great contribution to transpersonal psychology and I would say a must read for those interested in it.

P.S: If you read Wilber's opinion about this author, naming him as "romantic", you should know it's absolutely unfair. It seems he hasn't read this book when he says that it's about the regaining of the lost paradise of childhood. Washburn never says that childhood is a paradise, nor he says that transcendence is a return to this pre-egoic ideal state. He just points out some good and bad characteristics of non-egoic potentials, and then the same with the egoic ones. Transcendence happens when you get to integrate these two spheres succesfully. Just the same, ironically, as Wilber says about premodern times and modern (and posmodern) times, and I'm sure he wouldn't like someone to say that he's proposing a regression to the eden of premodern times. I appreciate Wilber's work, but his model, being attractive and interesting, does not match reality of human development half as good as Washburn's model does (even if Washburn himself doesn't get to explain certain things in the best possible way). Just to warn to those who got here after reading Wilber's critique of this author and are sceptic about his value. ... Read more

17. Humanistic and Transpersonal Psychology: A Historical and Biographical Sourcebook (Schools of Psychological Thought)
Hardcover: 480 Pages (1999-01-30)
list price: US$138.95 -- used & new: US$137.62
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Asin: 0313291586
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Product Description
An examination of four decades of research and practice in humanistic psychology, this work highlights the lasting contributions of humanistic psychology to the science of psychology and to the pursuit of personal and spiritual development. It explores the passions and goals of the founders and their vital legacy for the 21st century. ... Read more

18. Revisioning Transpersonal Theory : A Participatory Vision of Human Spirituality (Suny Series in Transpersonal and Humanistic Psychology)
by Jorge N. Ferrer, Richard Tarnas
Paperback: 273 Pages (2001-10-19)
list price: US$22.95 -- used & new: US$20.44
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Asin: 0791451682
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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A participating alternative to the experimentalism and perennialism dominant in transpersonal psychology. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

2-0 out of 5 stars What's going on here?
My readings in Transpersonal Psych seem really flat so far, even though I thought I was the target audience. This book appears to be an attempt to grab the helm of discourse and steer away from totalizing visions such as I found in my previous toe-dip into the field, Wilber's Sex, Ecology, Spirituality: The Spirit of Evolution, Second Edition. But it makes very little headway for my money.

Amongst Ferrer's biggest bogeymen, which he sees as leading T_Psych astray, are 'experientialism' (the idea of spirituality as experience which he wants to replace with the idea of 'participation'), and 'perennialism' (the idea that all religions worldwide are in some way examples of a common underlying truth.) I agree these valuable ideas have been overdone, but Ferrer offers little to replace them.

On 'experientialism', not only are we not about to lose it, we most certainly should not. I happened to open Greer's Monsters: An Investigator's Guide to Magical Beings today and was hit by: "Magical practitioners will not need convincing that supernatural forces and entities exist -- anyone who has done six months or more of systematic training with traditional magical disciplines knows that already, from direct personal experience...", which is right. There's nothing wrong with such a viewpoint. What is 'non-participatory' about encountering entities, working with energies, healing, shamanic journeying, visions of gaia or the cosmos as unified, etc.? Or the huge numbers of interesting states studied by Grof? Nothing is what. I hope and believe 'spiritual experience' is here to stay.

Ferrer seems to be saying 'experientialism' is an isolated and non-participatory viewpoint. Rubbish. Of course, he may well be correct within the field that 'inner experience' has been made to bear an empirical weight to which it's unsuited, and his remarks on the overuse of a scientific paradigm are good, but experientialism itself is hardly to blame. If it is the new idea he seems to think, it's one of the best ideas we've had as a species. (Most of what he says is, I think, aimed at defusing some of Wilber's egotistical theoretical dominance of the field -- fine, but trying to fight bad theory with more bad theory is hardly the answer.)

On 'perennialism', again, whilst Ferrer is certainly right that it has been taken way too far by authors like Wilber, not everyone overdoes similarities between paths that way. Procedural and technical similarities, in terms of meditation and energy techniques, underlying mystical _methods_, not just scholastic theories, interest every psychologist with transpersonal leanings. What about theories like Assagioli's which are so easy to fit into any tradition because they see something that usefully underlies human experience? This is not 'perennialism' as Ferrer argues against it; it ought to be part of the solution, but instead we go too far the other direction, into a relativism which strikes me as more or less a copout.

He is great at analyzing different types of perennialism (pp. 76-80); why make it into the bad guy? Surely the actual problem is simply that people are treating perennialism as an established fact rather than an interesting idea? As the latter, it has really been useful in Grof's work. Some like to jump from similarities amongst religions and spiritualities, noticing a trope here and a technique there, to suddenly making 'complete' models which already claim to know everything about all spiritual paths (!), when the actual work of real comparison has not even vaguely begun to be done, and I agree, that's silly. It is merely what happens when you lean on a hard, absolutist perennialism as an a priori theoretical fact, rather than investigating it (yes, empirically) as a theory.

What we need is a 'soft perennialism', less concerned with 'ultimate realities' and with endlessly ranking religions according to achievement ladders like some hopeless new labour league table (which Wilber does, I admit) and more concerned with _actually_ comparing paths and results, to one another and to our understandings of psychology. In other words, doing the actual practical work rather than endlessly making mental models from reading. I thought that was what T_Psych was supposed to be about! Ferrer's woolly notions of 'participatory spirituality' don't go much of the way towards it. He wants to make T_Psych into a kind of interfaith religious discussion manqué! I can imagine nothing less useful.

Yet again, as with other documents of the school, there's no understanding of Taoism (which appears only as a bit-part) and no mention of Hermetics, let alone something like Wicca. All the documents adduced are in Hindu, Buddhist and Christian traditions. There's a depressing sense of returning to these religious texts as paradigmatic, rather than foregrounding spiritual and psychological techniques, theories and experiences, thus ending the useful addressing of spontaneous spiritual phenomena that had been so welcome in the field.

I can't understand what has happened to the T_Psych school. Where's the discovering enterprise of a Grof, the universal depth of an Assagioli, the energetic genius of a Reich, the erudition of a Jung? Where is the psychology that can understand spiritual experiences, have techniques to generate them (without 'ranking' everything), making the transpersonal an intriguing option for the unreligious but also interfacing with and informing religion (without trying to one-up it) etc.? I really am so disappointed with what is being done. If this school needs to write such books as this in order to reject Wilber, well fine I guess, but could you wake me up when it's over? This is such dull stuff! It's a sort of tractatus philosophico-politicus whose job is more ecumenical than theoretical, let alone actually psychological. I plan to read more in Psychosynthesis, and more Grof for certain, but other than that, will hesitate at T-Psych from now on.

5-0 out of 5 stars quesionning your quest
this book is verry helpful to help you to ask yourself some good questions regarding your inner journey. It hilights many potential pittfals encountered in the transpersonal practices and anchor them in a tentative new encompassing approach.

The most important point for me, after two years of practice of holotropic breathwork, was the dangers of an approach too exclusively experiential, which is common in the transpersonal field. That is the belief that experiences in themselves contain healing potential and spriritual progress. the emphasis on experience was necessary for a time for the transpersonal field to be accepted by the scientific community as the study of non ordinary state of consciousness. but the quest for experience can easily turn into an addiction to temporary high spiritual states without being intergrated into the daily life, but not without inflation of the ego... as in the case of many psychonautes exclusively using psychedelic substance. traditionnaly, experiences are only one of the many ingredients nessary for a fruitful spiritual practice, which come along with intelectual studies, respect of ethic principles, relationships in a shangha or group of practicionner and with a teacher of master.

another interesting point is the new and refreshing ways to account for the diversity of spiritual systems. contrary to Wilber who is caught in an objectivist view where he posit a hierarchy between the different system, and hence a definit objective abolute truth about the ultimate, Ferrer argue for a diversity of ways of unfolding the truth of the universe, which are neither hierarchically organised, neither reductible to each other. This is a very healthy view that gives theorical grounding to a real respect but also curiosity as a basic attitude for the relationships between poeple beloging to different spiritual schools.

This is a book to read for anybody involved in the modern sprititual quest where one often mixes many different practices : a lot of buddhist meditation, a good deal of hata yoga, some christian devotion, without forgetting the nessesary participation to shamanic entheogenic rituals... it is a very useful tools to clarify one's own goals in the practice.

but it is definitely a scholar book which speaks of philosophical controverseries and need some efforts to be read.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Different Approach
This was a difficult book for the first reading because I was not familiar with much of the information cited by Ferrer.It is not because the book is poorly written, just because it was new.There are many things to think about while reading the book.This is not a Washburn or Wilber spin off but something entirely different.Ferrer does a great job in presenting an original perspective in transpersonal theory.A must have book for the transpersonal theorist.

5-0 out of 5 stars Ponder on This
When I first read this book I hated it, but I have read and studied it for 2 years and find it one of the best books ever written on transpersonal psychology.Be sure that you get the reference book Ferrer references because his thesis will make much more sense.You may not agree with everything he states, but is a very significant book for those who question their own beliefs.A must read. ... Read more

19. Ecstatic Transformation: Transpersonal Psychology in the Work of Mechthild of Magdeburg
by Ulrike Wiethaus
 Hardcover: 195 Pages (1996-02)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$8.95
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Asin: 0815626800
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20. Psychology and the Internet, Second Edition: Intrapersonal, Interpersonal, and Transpersonal Implications
Paperback: 392 Pages (2006-09-28)
list price: US$69.95 -- used & new: US$44.72
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0123694256
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
The previous edition provided the first resource for examining how the Internet affects our definition of who we are and our communication and work patterns. It examined how normal behavior differs from the pathological with respect to Internet use. Coverage includes how the internet is used in our social patterns: work, dating, meeting people of similar interests, how we use it to conduct business, how the Internet is used for learning, children and the Internet, what our internet use says about ourselves, and the philosophical ramifications of internet use on our definitions of reality and consciousness. Since its publication in 1998, a slew of other books on the topic have emerged, many speaking solely to internet addiction, learning on the web, or telehealth. There are few competitors that discuss the breadth of impact the internet has had on intrpersonal, interpersonal, and transpersonal psychology.

Key Features
* Provides the first resource for looking at how the Internet affects our definition of who we are
* Examines the philosophical ramifications of Internet use and our definitions of self, reality, and work
* Explores how the Internet is used to meet new friends and love interests, as well as to conduct business
* Discusses what represents normal behavior with respect to Internet use ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars for the Web 2.0
The book deserves a wider audience than to be relegated to psychologists. In fact, anyone who has wondered about how the rise of the Internet and the Web has affected people should take a peek here. Especially because nowadays we are considered to be in the so-called Web 2.0 era, distinguished by the rise of sundry social networking websites.

The text covers a variety of topics. Internet addiction, for one. Does this really exist? If so, how serious can it be for some users? Another major discussion is about the virtual societies that have emerged. Not necessarily about the literal virtual worlds that you might first think about these days. The virtual societies or communities covers cases like newsgroups and peer to peer networks that have arisen out of the net gestalt.

Needless to say, sex rears its head in the book. Investigating how some sexual relationships are mediated or initiated via internet contacts. Like dating websites or chat rooms. The book refers to quite a lot of existing literature about this issue. ... Read more

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