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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Daemon Pothos: A Teleology of Longing
by McGovern, Mindy, M.A., Pacifica Graduate Institute, 2017, 63; 10255172
Abstract (Summary)

This thesis uses hermeneutic and heuristic methodologies to explore the phenomenon of longing and what purpose it might serve. This exploration is then related to the field of marriage and family therapy. The etymology of the word longing (Pothos) is considered as are its links to Eros (love) and Himeros (desire) in Greek mythology. Current research reveals that longing has attributes of disconnection, hope, existential questioning, abandonment, despair, vulnerability, grief, and yearning. Some of these attributes are related to childhood trauma that increases vulnerability and makes connection more challenging in adulthood. Research in affective neuroscience explores the relationship between genetically provided affective wiring systems in the brain and their possible link to human behaviors related to depression. Possible transmission of longing across diverse generations and cultures is also considered as well as the phenomenon of longing in relation to the psyche from a Jungian perspective and in myth and folktale.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Jacobson, Gioia
School: Pacifica Graduate Institute
Department: Counseling Psychology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 56/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Mental health, Personality psychology
Keywords: Attachment, Disconnection, Longing, Pothos, Transference, Trauma
Publication Number: 10255172
ISBN: 978-1-369-57177-6
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