On behalf of the IAJS Board of Directors, we are please to announce Jason Wright’s coming IAJS seminar entitled: The Necessary Fiction: Blakes Illustrations of the Book of Job, a communal descent myth for our fluid time.
Both ZOOM seminar sessions will occur next weekend on the 6th and 7th of November.
We will post a ZOOM invitation in the coming week. Please note that there is a time change next weekend (falling back an hour) that will not change the actual clock beginning time, 7 am Seattle time and 4 pm London time detailed below.
Yours in chaos and peace,
The IAJS Seminar Committee
November 6 & 7, 2021: Jason Wright (3 hour ZOOM segments each day)
Both ZOOM sessions will be moderated by Camilla L. Giambonini
A ZOOM invitation will be posted on the IAJS discussion forum mid-week. Each session will begin at 7 am PDT (Seattle) and 4:00 pm GMT (London) even though there is a time change that weekend. Please refer to: https://www.worldtimebuddy.com/
Only Seminar related posts will be released beginning on November 6th through Monday November 9th to allow seminar related discussion to flow freely.
A ZOOM recording of each seminar will also be posted shortly following each seminar.
The Necessary Fiction: Blakes Illustrations of the Book of Job, a communal descent myth for our fluid time.
This presentation, given over two days, will discuss Blake’s illustrations of the book of Job, which can be seen as the condensation of his lifelong mythic thinking rendered into 21 engraved plates. These plates can be read as a descent myth. To view these plates from an individual perspective is interesting and valuable, one might see it as an individuation journey. Edinger named it as an encounter between the ego and the Self, that is, an expression of the Transcendent Function. Blake is so fecund and so broadly sourced it is easy to project many meaning systems, as Sloane Wilson describes them, into him and his work. However, I suggest that it points in a wider more communal direction toward the group experience and, in particular, the unfolding event of ‘becoming’ in the context of the whole.
Read from this perspective, Blake’s Job offers a means to look into the history of our lived experience and to envision forward to what might be emerging between us and our experience of the context we inhabit. I imagine this emergent process as a move from a consciousness of exploitation to a consciousness of resonance.
My approach for this presentation will be centered in syncresis and synthesis. How meaning frames come together in dialogue to elucidate, express, and bear our emergent becoming, something of the consciousness of resonance I see. Key to my understanding of this form of resonance is that we experience as a matter of reception. From this viewpoint what can we receive into life not what can we make it becomes more important, something we experience as therapists and analysts every day. This Whitheadian notion of receiving rather than acting upon, for me, enables the shift from exploitation to resonance that I am trying to articulate. I see this experience around me in my clinical work and indeed my life generally, Whitehead reduces it to the tension between being and becoming in Platonic thought and that we have emphasized being leading to the focus on the individualist power dynamics we now struggle with. Practically I have approached this work in community through the thinking of Hillman using a communal context to receive change in an individual and indeed group process.
Bohm‘s ideas of implicate and explicate order can be seen to resonate with Jung’s ideas of consciousness and the collective unconscious. Bohm has suggested that his ideas can be seen in that way, but his thinking is more deeply linked to Whitehead. Bohm more readily draws on Krishnamurti’s attitude to thought and the work of group analysis through Patrick De Maré to offer us a technique, through ‘dialogue’, for the imagination and experience of such creative resonance in group. Blake in the way I suggest we can read The Job does the same. Indeed I would see beneath the presenting images and meaning systems an archetypal process, perhaps of death and rebirth. What in Whitehead we see as the ongoing process of perishing and becoming.
The two sessions I will present will break down like this:
The first session will be the descent to Ulro, Blake’s term for spiritual death, which he saw in the dead hand of enlightenment rationalism. I will present the first 10 engraved plates and link them to Blake’s ideas and associated experience.
The second session will explore the ascent to a new life in a context more congruent and embedded in the experience of that context and it’s divine roots. I will present the final 11 engraved plates.
Both sessions will give space to be in dialogue in group. I hope this will not only be to share our responses to the Blake and the theoretical context that I will bring, but also to explore how this might be applied to our clinical work. My hope also is that we will be able to feel something of the experience that Blake and the theorists draw us toward.
Bio: Jason Wright is a practicing psychoanalytic psychotherapist. He trained with in London with The Association of Independent Psychotherapists ‘in the tension between Jung and Freud’. He also trained as a transpersonal therapist with the Centre for Transpersonal Psychology and in group work with Goldsmiths. He has worked in the field now for 30 years firstly developing a multidisciplinary project working with addicted people as a community, The CORE Trust and for the last 10 years a multi-disciplinary practice in central London, number 42, bringing practices together in dialogue. His primary interest is this dialogic frame for psychotherapy work and the formation of community to achieve it much inspired by the work of James Hillman and David Bohm. He has served on various institutional boards and continues to practice himself individually and in groups.