INTRODUCTION TO PROCESS WORK |
Process Work was developed in the 70's and 80's by Arnold Mindell, an American physicist and teaching analyst at the C. G. Jung-Institute in Zurich. He realized that there was a similarity between body symptoms and dreams. He found underlying patterns to the dream experience and the physical pain and called his method Dreambody Work.
He later changed its name to Process Work or Process Oriented Psychology because he picked up the process and followed it until it yielded it's information.
Mindell's goal is higher awareness of what and how we perceive. He claims that we become aware of ourselves through six channels: The visual, auditive, proprioceptive, movement, relationship and world channel. The first four are basic channels and carry signals coming from inside ourselves (a visual memory, an inner voice, a pain, a spontaneous movement) or from the outside (a picture which attracts us, a song we hear that reminds us of a lost friend). The other two are mixed channels that cannot be taken apart without losing information. Every relationship has got it's relationship myth which wants to be lived. The world channel confronts us with synchronicities.
Signals can be primary or secondary. Both can be conscious or unconscious. The primary signals go along with what we say and belong to our primary process with which we identify. The so-called double signals come from the secondary process which we marginalize because it makes us feel uneasy, ashamed or afraid. Nevertheless this secondary process is part of our dreambody, part of our whole self and wants to be noticed and integrated. It therefore sends signals through the six channels like dreamfigures, critical remarks, body symptoms, sudden jerks, relationship problems or frightening world news.
In process work we can follow these signals in the channel they appear in or by switching the channel. Like in alchemy, they can be amplified until they show their complete energy and quality.
Below the level of signals and therefore also below the dreamlevel, we can find the so-called flirts. They are even more subtle, only last a second, are instantaneously put aside as not-real and quickly forgotten. Such a flirt is the animal you see in your room at night, knowing it's just your pile of clothes. It's the song before it's sung, a slight feeling of dizziness, a little quiver, a sudden short smell or knowing who's on the phone if it rings.
Catching these flirts and giving them the opportunity to unfold can help avoid body symptoms and relationship problems. If we understand the message on the flirt level, we might not need more painful signals.
The flirts arise from the essence which lies below it all and connects us to the world. It' s the Tao that cannot be said.
We can catch and follow the flirts in nature. They are everywhere, all of the time. We only have to relax and become aware of them. They are the answer to the question we have in mind or the prayer we carry in our heart.
The Four Corners Method is based on process work. We pick up a flirt to find the first inner power, we follow the body's sensations and movements to give rise to the other three personal qualities and we evolve the process of the four dreamfigures, their relationship myths and the atmosphere inside the whole system to let magic happen and a solution appear.
For further information see the list of publications.