In what some might call synchronicity I came across Mesmer’s (W) animal magnetism in two separate contexts today.
Firstly, in “Transference, Countertransference And Tele: Their Relation To Group Research And Group Psychotherapy [Word Doc] in Psychodrama Vol II by J.L. Moreno and then again in:
Both these sources tie in with much of what I am writing about in this blog on the science of relationships, and specifically a current project on “parallel process” in supervision. It got me interested again in what Moreno calls tele. It is a word that will be with me, like it or not while I am involved with psychodrama (like the word psychodrama itself). I don’t like the word “tele” much, it seems to confuse everyone including me. The aim of this post(s) is to investigate tele, especially in relationship to, as in the title of Moreno’s lecture, to group research and group psychotherapy. I thought I’d make a summary of Moreno’s 1957 lecture chapter, and make responses.
Note: I continue to edit these posts, they are a work in progress for now, not really be good blogging practice. If anyone comments or there are track backs, I will not change what I wrote so conversations make sense.
I’ll start with quoting the Intro in full, make some comments and do more posts later, a series: Transference and Tele (tag).
Paragraph 1, Introduction, Page 3
Transference, Countertransference and Tele: Their Relation To Group Research And Group Psychotherapy
The time has come to evaluate the advances made by psychotherapy and to spell out, if possible, the common denominators of all its forms. Most of the leading protagonists of the classic period of the individual methods of psychotherapy are gone, from the American as well as from the European scene: Freud, Janet, Adler, Ferenczi, Rank, Meyer, Brill, Jeliffe, to mention a few. Only the glamor over their graves is left; sic transit gloria mundi. (W) Most protagonists of group and action methods are getting aged and respectable, but the problem remains: How can the various methods be brought into agreement, into a single, comprehensive system? In the course of these lectures I am going to stress the common denominators rather than the differences. I will attempt to tie together all varieties of modern psychotherapy. Whether the therapeutic meeting is conducted on the couch, sitting on a chair, gathered around a table or acting on a stage, the principal hypothesis in all cases is that the interaction produces therapeutic results. One has to have an open, flexible mind; at times there may be an indication for using an authoritarian, at other times a democratic method, at times it may be necessary to be more direct or more passive, but one has to be willing to move gradually from one extreme to the other if the situation requires. Just as there is a choice of therapist there may be a choice of vehicle, couch, chair or stage, and there may be a choice of which system of terms and interpretations a patient needs, until a system is formulated which is able to attain the consensus of all.
Let me comment:
“How can the various methods be brought into agreement, into a single, comprehensive system?”
Unlikely, but there is one common thread in many psychotherapies and that is the idea of transference, and just on that theme there may be some development and agreement. Moreno makes a contribution, and we might well in this new decade take this further.
“One has to have an open, flexible mind; at times there may be an indication for using an authoritarian, at other times a democratic method, at times it may be necessary to be more direct or more passive, but one has to be willing to move gradually from one extreme to the other if the situation requires.”
Yes! Perhaps he is mellowing a bit in 1954.
[stextbox id="custom" caption="Citation Psychodrama Vol II"]Moreno, J.L. & Moreno, Z.T. (1959/1975). Psychodrama Volume II (Second Printing). Beacon House, Beacon, New York.[/stextbox]