Third International Conference on Integral Psychology

May 30 - June 1, 2003

Venue: California Institute of Integral Studies, and Cultural Integration Fellowship, San Francisco. California. USA

 

Introduction

This conference is the third of a series of gatherings by international scholars and practitioners in the fields of integral psychology and psychotherapy and related areas-- the first was in Matagiri, NY, USA and the second in Pondicherry, India.

Integral psychology is an emerging field which seeks to integrate western psychology with the integral yoga and philosophy of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo. The implications of Sri Aurobindo? and the Mother? Integral Yoga for psychology are enormous. But thus far very little has been done to bring this wisdom into the field of psychology. The term ?ntegral?is in vogue these days, and many different thinkers are applying the term in their own ways. The Mother and Sri Aurobindo, however were the first to apply this term to evolve a new system of yoga which they called Integral Yoga. According to Sri Aurobindo, yoga is ?othing but practical psychology.?Their integralism offers a very broad framework for integrating the insights of modern psychologies that are open to the spiritual possibilities of human kind with the spiritual findings of sages and mystics.

This conference is part of an ongoing effort to "grow" integral psychology. While work is currently being done in this area, it is as yet embryonic, new, and tentative.  This conference will bring together the main people who are working in this emerging field of integral psychology to facilitate dialog among the participants, and develop the foundation for integral psychology. 

 

Objectives of the Conference

  • To bring together leading thinkers and practitioners of Integral Psychology for discussion and talks.
  • To further define and delineate the field of Integral Psychology in order to strengthen and deepen Integral theory and practice.
  • To create an atmosphere where the participants can expand, deepen, widen, and heighten their inner and outer consciousness, so that Integral Yoga becomes a purer and a deeper flame in them.
  • To start a network to keep the inspiration alive, and create a forum where the participants can keep each other informed of their work in the future. 

 

The Structure of the Conference

The papers presented will be mainly on Integral Psychology and Integral Psychotherapy. There will be plenary and concurrent sessions, and some panel discussions. Each speaker will be allowed 50 minutes to present, and then 10 minutes to answer the questions of the audience.

The conference is scheduled to begin at 6.30 P.M. on Friday, May 30 and end at 1.00 P.M on Sunday, June 1, 2003.

 

Some Representative Titles

      The Relevance of Integral Psychology to Mind-Body Medicine

R.L. Bijlani, M.D.

Mind-body medicine, the latest incarnation of scientific medicine, is heavily dependent on an instrument which offers mental peace under adverse circumstances. In our erratic and unpredictable world, a better prescription for lasting mental peace than a worldview based on integral yoga is yet to be written.
 

     Contemporary Psychoanalysis and Integral Psychology: An Evolving Relationship

Brendan Collins, Ph.D.

What has recently been described as "a radical revision of all aspects of psychoanalytic thought" has been taking place within contemporary psychoanalysis.  At the same time, significant changes have been occurring within integral psychology. This presentation examines some of the most
significant recent changes within both traditions, and explores how the relationship between contemporary psychoanalysis and integral psychology is becoming complementary rather than adversarial.

      Integral Psychology and the Great Revolution

Matthijs Cornelissen, M.D.

We are standing at the threshold of an unprecedented change in the very structure, the very type of consciousness with which humanity looks at itself and the world. We are witnessing already a stupendous increase in our technical, material-mental capacities, and at the same time we can see the beginnings of a growing appreciation of the most ancient spiritual traditions. But the change Sri Aurobindo envisages goes far beyond both. He sees spirituality itself as evolving. What Sri Aurobindo expects, and has worked for, is nothing less than the embodiment of a perfect Gnostic consciousness. This involves a full, dynamic realisation of the fundamental identity of peace and action, being and knowing, matter and spirit, life and soul, purusha and prakriti in a new harmony of love and oneness. In this paper we will have a short look at some of the immediate effects this change could have for ourselves and for the society in which we live.

      The Meeting of East and West in Integral Psychology

Brant Cortright, Ph.D.

Just as Sri Aurobindo? integral philosophy is a unifying container for the world? spiritual traditions, so integral psychology is an integrating framework for the many, seemingly disparate schools of western psychology.  Integral psychology yields new methods for working in depth psychotherapy and reveals new possibilities for psychological health.  

      Embodied Spirituality in the Light of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother and Somatic Psychology 

Charles Flores

Sri Aurobindo and the Mother were great innovators of a spirituality that gave a special place for embodiment of Divinity on the Earth and in our bodies, a unique synthesis of ascending and descending yogas and spiritual paths of the past. This paper will discuss the place the physical body is given for spiritual development in the light of Sri Aurobindo and Mother, and will describe the eventual transformation of the body though Supermentalization. The paper will go further to discuss developments in somatic psychotherapies and inspired integral transformative practices and trainings that are naturally developing greater respect to physical embodiment, which the author believes are the beginnings new integral yogic practices for what Sri Aurobindo called "Subjective Age."

      The Development of the Psychic Being

Neeltje Huppes

In Sri Aurobindo's vision of the ongoing evolution of consciousness the psychic being has a prominent place. In 1972 the Mother wrote that it is through the psychic being that the supramental consciousness will manifest itself. This presentation will focus on the development and qualities of the psychic being and its role in the transformation of human
nature.  

      Through the Eyes of Infinity

Jan Maslow and Don Salmon

This joint, 90-minute presentation of their book, ?hrough the Eyes of Infinity: Toward an Integral Science of Consciousness? will offer a comprehensive overview of Sri Aurobindo? psychological vision.  It will use his ?oga psychology?as a lens through which to view contemporary theoriesand practices in scientific psychology and psychotherapy. 

      Ideals of Optimal Psychological Functioning

Larry Seidlitz

This paper discusses the importance and use of ideals for psychological growth, and outlines an integral framework of ideals of psychological functioning for use by individuals, educators, and helping professionals. These ideals address mental, emotional, motivational, physical, and
spiritual potentialities. They also address important aspects of everyday living.

     Transformation of Ego in Integral and Sufi Psychologies

Bahman Shirazi, Ph.D.

Sufism and Integral Yoga are two spiritual systems who have mastered the art of the transformation of egocentric consciousness (Nafs in Sufism and The Vital Ego in Integral Psychology) using heart-centered approaches. This lecture discussed the process of integration of egocentric and psychocentric consciousness in both systems by discussing the process of ?sychic transformation?in Integral Psychology and the stages of psycho-spiritual transformation in Sufi psychology.

      From the self to the Self: An Exposition on Personality Based on the Works of Sri Aurobindo

Suneet Varma, Ph.D

This paper outlines a theory of personality based on the works of Sri Aurobindo, and challenges encountered in introducing it in the Indian academia. It includes the author's personal journey of Self-discovery through the established views in academic psychology, leading to the Advaita Vedantic path, culminating in Integral Psychology.

      Purush and Prakriti in Theory and Clinical Practice

Eric Weiss

Sri Aurobindo? integral psychology is built, in large part, around a deep exploration of the relationship between Purusha (or pure consciousness) and Prakriti (the dynamic manifestation of consciousness).  In this lecture, we will examine the meaning of these two crucial ideas, and we will investigate their usefulness in the context of clinical practice.

 

Financial and Organizational Support

This conference is funded in part by the Foundation for World Education, and co-sponsored by the Association of Transpersonal Psychology (ATP). The organizational support comes from the California Institute of Integral Studies and the Cultural Integration Fellowship, San Francisco.

 

Organizing Committee

Kundan Singh (Ph.D. Cand.), Conference Coordinator

Brant Cortright, Ph.D., Director of the Integral Counseling Psychology program, CIIS.

Bahman A.K. Shirazi, Ph.D., Director of Graduate Studies, School of Consciousness & Transformation, CIIS and CIF member.

James Ryan, Ph.D., Director of the Asian & Comparative Studies program at CIIS and CIF Vice President.

 

Conference Fee

For the 3 day conference: $75

For individual days:

Friday: $15

Saturday: $50

Sunday: $25

Special discounts for Students:

For the entire conference: $50

For individual days:

Friday: $10

Saturday: $25

Sunday: $15 

To register, please write to Kundan Singh to request a brochure at kundan@ciis.edu