This qualitative study addresses the lived experience of participants in a specific somatic psychotherapy practice, relational somatic psychotherapy (RSP). The RSP approach is a biologically based, interpersonal exploration of consciousness and self-awareness through authentic relationship (Hilton, 2007). Following an Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) methodology, this study analyzes interviews focused on how participants experienced the somatically based psychodynamic healing modality of RSP through group relational dynamics. This study is grounded in depth psychology in that participants in RSP work with the unknown, repressed energy of the body in order to make behavioral and emotional energetic patterns conscious. It is grounded in somatic psychology in that the focus of exploration is in present moment experiences of the body. Thus, the assumption of this study is that the integration of both traditions creates an embodied approach to psyche. Themes that emerged from this study suggest that awareness is transformed through embodied relational experiences. These themes helped articulate that embodied relational experiences in psychodynamic group process supported individuals in integrating the dissociated parts of themselves into consciousness, suggesting that embodiment practices experienced in the context of authentic relationship help to integrate psyche and soma. Such experiences seem to integrate previous unconscious, implicit memory systems into healing and empowering embodied self-awareness.
|Commitee:||Kilpatrick, Alan, Sieck, Michael|
|School:||Pacifica Graduate Institute|
|Department:||Depth Psychology with Emphasis in Somatic Studies|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-B 79/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Neurosciences, Social psychology, Psychology|
|Keywords:||Authentic relationship, Emboded self-awareness, Neuroscience, Psychology, Relational, Somatic|
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