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NB: For more leadership coaching resources, join our coaching community Reading about Roberto Assagioli and Psychosynthesis (Aubyn’s view) A very good starting point to understanding the man and his ideas can be to read an article in Psychology Today by Sam Keen, based upon an interview with Roberto Assagioli shortly before his death.Click on this link to download the pdf: The Golden Mean of Roberto Assagioli – Sam Keen.Then Assagioli's house-keeper led him to another room, and, giving him pen and paper, said: "Doctor Assagioli would like you to make a list of everything you saw in the first room – every object, painting, and so on." It was an exercise in observation, very useful for those who live too much in their feelings and forget their hold on reality.
I told Assagioli in rather a sharp way: "Techniques are useless. When meeting a psychotherapy client, Assagioli would want to know what were his favourite films, paintings, books, music. This view of Assagioli's is behind the book I have written on beauty, and I am grateful to him for having shown me this new and essential perspective.
What counts is relationship." There was a bit of malice and presumption in this statement – after all, psychosynthesis is full of techniques. Has Assagioli communicated with any of his pupils since his death?
On the other hand, if our relations with others are serene and harmonious, we will feel better. He spoke of a Way of beauty, which leads to the realisation of the Self, and whose basic ingredient is the sense of revelation and fullness that beauty can offer.
Love, kindness, serenity, openness, and other interpersonal qualities can be cultivated. After about a year of working with Assagioli, I thought I understood that the techniques of psychosysnthesis were not so important, and that what really counted was the relation between therapist or counselor and client, the alchemy that happens between these two people. I was wondering how long it would take you." Assagioli was also one of the first to regard beauty as a basic human experience. But in psychosynthesis beauty in all its forms is considered worthy of attention, because it is formative.
Assagioli always gave much importance to relations between people. Growing Whole: Self-Realization for the Great Turning.
Our balance and well-being depend on the nature of our relationships with others: We carry in us unresolved conflicts, resentments, bad memories.
To encourage access to the superconscious, psychosynthesis offers various practical techniques, based on visualization, inner silence and meditation. Assagioli gave me the following image: "We are like a lotus, whose beauty and perfume are clearly perceptible by all, and whose roots are sunk in the mud". Without the mud the lotus would not live and grow." And now let us go back to Assagioli's waiting room.
Assagioli differentiates the higher unconscious from the middle unconscious - the stuff of which we are not always aware, but which is accessible, for example our telephone number, or the memory of what we did last summer - and from the lower unconscious, seat of impulses and instincts, the part of us that represents the beginnings of our evolution. Seeing as I used to enjoy an argument, I immediately grabbed the opportunity: "There's the moralising! There was a divan with a garnet-coloured silk blanket on it, and Sanskrit writing embroidered in gold.
She explained that in this essay Emerson talks about the importance of following one's own ideas and experience rather than leaning on what authorities, wise people, or great thinkers say.
Whatever issues from us is more authentic, it is first-hand, and has more value than anything inherited from someone else.