Creative Connections & Client Communications
Counseling Insights, June 30, 2004”Faithing” to Support Resilience
Somewhere in some dusty ancient text, some Chinese sage is recorded as saying, “If you want to be happy, Be Happy! This is wise existential therapy; the mind wills one’s state of being.
In the post WWII generation, we had Norman Vincent Peale’s run-away doctrine of The power of Positive Thinking. [Peale: May 31, 1898 at 6:00 AM, CST in Bowersville OH; Jupiter at 00 Libra (an Aries Point) square Venus on the Ascendant!]
Immediately thereafter, we had Silva Mind Control. [Jose Silva, August 11, 1914 at 2:14 AM CST in Laredo TX, with Sun in Leo in the 3rd, ruling the 3rd, opposed by Jupiter, Saturn on the Gemini Ascendant!]
Then followed all sorts of “Creative Visualization” doctrines, texts, and teachings.
If things were going badly, if things need to change, thinking can make them so. Astrology is also a vehicle for this therapy.
In her fine book, Resilient Adults: Overcoming a Cruel Past. Jossey-Bass Publishers, San Francisco 1994, Gina O’Connell Higgins identifies two “overarching themes” for bouncing back, affecting change into the future. The first is faith in surmounting and the second is faith in human relationships.
We must be able to formulate, see, identify with “the logic of conviction:” this is something I can do and this is how I can do it, to one Level of another. –And, second, I recognize that I can’t do it alone. My faith in myself is tied to a wellspring of support through relationship(s). [This is the two halves of the horoscope joined together.]
Let me repeat this: we’ve got to be able to see, to visualize, to imagine, to conjure up the changes we want to make; we must be able to have supportive concurrence with someone to keep us clear and strong.
While we have to be able to visualize what it will be like to behave differently, we must also be able to visualize, to choose what not to be like. –Higgins frames much of her decision-making for change against some pretty demoralizing family-development case-history backdrops. Her subjects are bouncing back by visualizing what can be within their own family life and also what it should never be like, referring back to what it had been for them.
In many places in therapy literature, there are stories of survival, of survivors, living through the blackest of family scenes, living through the holocaust concentration camps, etc. … led by faith in what could be and faith-strengthening love in relationship. In every case, the Self is accentuated within change and within supportive love, even just the memory of it.
--In short, THIS “faithing” is what expedites change –not the movement of planets. It is the communication of this to the client and then the search with the client for the word pictures of feeling that begin to focus change, development, and maturation.
When the client finds it difficult at first to visualize change, to set the mind into a faithing position, it is usually because anger is in the way. The client is hurt, upset, silently or flagrantly wanting revenge. Anger has been a longtime defense against further deeper hurt. This is a natural reaction; anger is a defense.
Anger is replaceable by understanding, compassion, and forgiveness.
Giving love and receiving love relationally then support the new turn of mind.
Countless times, I have heard clients speak hopelessly about the rut of feelings they were in, the hopelessness of it all, and I have responded, “May I suggest you feel this way because you live alone … you’re alone with your feelings and thoughts; there is no respite; no way to talk over the feelings … and to gain support to change them.” --This observation is profound. It sets up the potential for a faithing concept for change and invites through a fresh open-ness and trust a relationship for supportive communications and sharing.
The astrologer is working with attitudinal changes that create environmental and behavioral changes as well! --Of course, this kind of therapeutic conceptualization will best tie itself to Arcs and Transits over a period of time, say, a year and a half, promising a “new you” at the end. Psychologist simplify this process with the reference to “behavioral modification.”
Think these dimensions through. Listen to the Chinese sage. Support your client’s faith in Self, help him or her formulate it … once the way is cleared of anger and routined aloneness. This kind of faithing is the best diet of all; the weights lost are the weights of lonely darkness.