Congratulations to the recent graduates, including Mark Dean, from the Inter-regional Society of Jungian Analysts (IRSJA) and the Philadelphia Jung Institute (PAJA). As a new Jungian Psychoanalyst, Mark will be taking up the development of his analytic practice, teaching, and lecturing on analytic psychology, conducting supervision, and writing.
Mark’s graduating thesis was titled, Instances and Aspects of Image: A Fairytale Example, which utilized a well-known fairytale to discuss how aspects of image interface with consciousness and direct it towards a deeper understanding of the psyche. Mark passed his cases exam, “with distinction.” In the three case examples offered within the exam, Mark emphasized the central role of image in comprehending the core issues. A number of perspectives were utilized including dreams, fairy tales, film, and poetry as well as the dramatic enactments within the transference and countertransference field.
What makes analysis so unique is the emphasis placed on the individual nature of life’s struggles and an understanding of these as potential calls for greater growth and self-realization. Life consists of more than outer circumstances, symptoms, and conditions to overcome. An inner universe exists that asks something of each individual, which is to live more fully and authentically. The analyst is trained to be able to enter into the unique world of the individual, to understand his or her outer experience, and listen carefully to the expressions of their inner nature. The analyst does not judge but engages in discovering the intrinsic meaning and purpose of the individual experiences.
Jung coined the term, “individuation,” to describe the process of growth and self-realization that arises when we take up the task of living a more authentic life. As each of us attempts to find a more fruitful marriage between our outer and inner experiences, it is almost inevitable that conflicts will arise.
Growth Often Begins with Painful Experiences
Analysis teaches us that while conflicts are often experienced by the individual as evidence of failure, personal defect, or weakness, these same elements reflect the stirrings of a birth of a new attitude towards life. A process of renewal and growth, as well as the evolution of a new sense of meaning and purpose almost invariably begins with a painful impasse, an interpersonal conflict, a loss, or debilitating anxiety. In line with Jung’s views, the individual’s psyche is always striving towards a greater sense of wholeness. Inner resources exist, which are often invisible to the struggling individual. Through the process of analysis, these resources are made more accessible and may be capitalized upon through a relationship with them so that they may find a natural place in life, leading to a more authentic and full life. Rather than erecting barriers to the growth that difficulty often heralds, analysis allows one to embrace his or her nature and to come to know it more fully, thus, reducing suffering.
Analysis is a Unique Process for Each Person
The process of analysis is not a predetermined one but varies with each individual that enters into it as each brings with them their unique history, personality, and means of self-expression. All expressions of psychic life are taken into consideration, such as dreams, fantasy images, life events, relationships, emotions, as well as other factors. The psyche utilizes all of these factors to articulate its nature and purpose. Careful attention to these expressions consistently draws attention to what matters most, the development of a fuller and more deeply meaningful embrace of life. The well-trained analyst assists in this process of growth and discovery, which is, no less than the building of a new relationship to life and oneself.
About the Analyst
Mark Dean, MFA, MA, ATR-BC, LPC is a Jungian Psychoanalyst and co-founder of The Center for Psyche & the Arts, LLC with offices in Lansdowne and Berwyn, Pennsylvania. Mark is also an art psychotherapist with credentials as a Registered, Board Certified Art Therapist and Licensed Professional Counselor (PA). Mark has over 25 years of psychotherapy experience and has been active as an educator and lecturer. His work extends well beyond the visual arts, which formed the basis of his early development, to include literature, dreams, mythology, and archetypal patterning in everyday life. He is well versed in a range of theoretical perspectives with an emphasis on a depth orientation.
The Center for Psyche & the Arts, LLC is an organization devoted to the promotion and understanding of the importance of the arts and imagery in psychological life and work. Mark is taking new clients interested in Jungian Analysis and is currently enrolling group supervision participants.