Soul Centred Psychotherapy
Heal the past and grow in self awareness and wholeness.
Soul Centred Psychotherapy
Soul Centred Psychotherapy is a therapeutic approach that was developed at The Kairos Centre in 1992. It focuses on relationship, mindfulness, lived experience, meaning, honouring, enchantment, and the sacred.
Relationship is understood as a living thing, a 'third body' that forms between two people. Soul Centred Psychotherapy also attends to our relationship with ourselves - working to develop a more vital and aware relationship between our everyday sense of self and the other layers of consciousness that we usually call the unconscious. By attending to this inner relationship, we gain insight into the internal dynamics that determine our thoughts, moods and behaviours.
The therapy process itself also involves a relationship between therapist and client. This therapeutic relationship may involve the therapist as guide, as teacher, as support person, as healer, as fellow traveller.
Mindfulness is a state of being fully present in the moment with attention available for whatever is happening. Soul Centred Psychotherapists use mindfulness practices to develop their capacity for therapeutic attention, so they can be fully present in the therapy process. Mindfulness is also used as a healing practice in the therapeutic work.
Lived, embodied experience is authentic, connected, and immediate. Soul Centred Psychotherapy works to evoke authentic, embodied experience to support connections between mind and body, thoughts and feelings, memories and current life events. It is the difference between talking about something that happened yesterday and stepping back inside the experience with all the sights, sounds, smells, body feelings and emotions.
Meaning in Soul Centred Psychotherapy involves a sense of value and importance that is subjective rather than objective or collective. The central question is 'what does this mean to you?' So that rather than ideas of 'wrong-doing' and 'right-doing' we are working with each person's deepest value and meaning.
This is closely related to the idea of honouring whatever emerges in a therapy session. This can take the form of drawing or painting an image, sculpting a form in clay, writing in a journal or moving to music. This creative expression of the inner material that comes into awareness (as images, symbols, memories, sensations or sounds) is a way of valuing its importance and developing ongoing relationship with soul.
'Enchantment is a spell that comes over us, an aura of fantasy and emotion that can settle on the heart' (Thomas Moore: The Reenchantment of Everyday Life). This involves a sense of mystery in which we find value, love and union with the world around us by attending to the rhythms and cycles of nature, the moon, the seasons, and our own mind-body systems.
The idea of the sacred follows from meaning, honouring, and enchantment. This is similar to Jung's idea of the Self as the central organising principle of the psyche, as well as the idea of the anima mundi or world soul.
In Soul Centred Psychotherapy some of the great myths that have informed humanity are studied and brought present in the form of story, images, and enactment. This can take the form of rituals that develop spontaneously in a session or are planned over several sessions.
Soul Centred psychotherapy works to develop a more conscious, manageable and creative relationship with the internal processes that have blocked people's most intense, profound, and honest relation to life. It also works to develop a rich appreciation of the soul's reality and to nurture its depth and genius.
Soul Centred Psychotherapy attends to the human experience through the everyday stuff of life: our thoughts, emotions, body sensations and symptoms, and the relationships we have with others and the world. Value, meaning, and healing emerge from within each person's unique process of inner work rather than from any external ideal of health, wealth, or happiness. In this sense, therapy is not about fixing something that is broken, but about attending to the rich language of soul as it manifests in our day to day lives.
Read below for a more detailed explanation of the therapeutic modalities involved in Soul Centred Psychotherapy.