GPHD7223: Somatic Psychology and Mind-Body Healing

Credits 3
Somatic psychologies and body-mind approaches to healing have long been known to Indigenous cultures, especially those outside the modern Western tradition. Since the beginning of the modern era, at least three centuries ago, Western thinking has been under the sway of Cartesian assumptions that partition the body and the mind. Only during the 20th century did the Cartesian tradition begin to crumble. Somatic psychology enters into Western thinking under the influence of psychoanalytic discoveries and heirs to Freud such as Wilhelm Reich. These developments are matched by an increasing knowledge of Asian philosophies within the Western world. In this course, somatic psychology and body-mind therapies will be introduced historically, theoretically, and experientially. Students will learn about the various doctrines that have shaken up Cartesian psychology and will gain an understanding of the breadth and depth of contemporary body-mind approaches to healing. The experiential aspect will involve special attention being given to the ways in which we maintain or avoid bodily experiences.