The Transformational Opportunity of Embracing the Silence Beyond Hopelessness

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Nixon, Gary
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American Academy of Psychotherapists
This paper looks at the problem of world collapse and absolute hopelessness. Typically, as demonstrated by an opening case example, Western psychological approaches encourage a retreat from the abyss of nothingness. Even existential philosophy and psychology which has been preoccupied with the encounter of nothingness and death retreats from the abyss experience into self-created meaning and personal resoluteness. A transpersonal approach is offered as an alternative exemplified by Wilber’s spectrum of development approach. A counselling case study is presented which points out typical problems on the spiritual journey such as spiritual materialism and the dark night of the soul as well as the pivotal opportunity of absolute hopelessness itself. Rather than resurrecting hope in a typical conventional psychology fashion, the acceptance of absolute hopelessness is seen as a paradoxical opportunity of transformation.
Permission to include article in repository granted by Jon Farber, Editor, Voices.
Psychotherapy , Transpersonal psychotherapy
Nixon, G. (2001). The transformational opportunity of embracing the silence beyond hopelessness. Voices: The Journal of the American Academy of Psychotherapists, 37(2), 56-66.