The aim of this book is to awaken creative desire and expand the imagination of the psychotherapist and, in turn, her patient. Each chapter is meant to surprise the reader and help him see the world in a new way. Many varieties of imagination are explored -- the spiritual, the relational, the dreamworld, the aesthetic and the adaptive. The author offers space to reflect, to daydream, to remember; space to pursue goals, to make new connections; space to take risks and space to be wrong. The psychotherapist is encouraged to find her own voice, be poetic, dare to create, converse with other disciplines and, most especially, enter the world of dreams. This is all passed onto the patient as the dyad enters the intersubjective field.
Both scholarly and practical, this volume elegantly and persuasively synthesizes for the first time research in many fields, including spirituality and Kabbalah, neuroscience, the arts, biology and artificial intelligence, to give an in depth and original understanding of the current pressing problems in the rapidly changing field of psychotherapy: how do we work with unconscious processes and early memories to help our patients become more imaginative, creative, hopeful and resilient, and in so doing, heal. The relationship between the body and creative imagination is fully explored as well as the disruptive effect of trauma on the imagination and how to address this.
The emphasis on surprise, uncanny communication, interdisciplinary inquiry, use of dreamwork and the imagination of the body — how it spontaneously meets new challenges— all stimulate the creativity of the reader. Through numerous case studies, the author illustrates the practical implications of how this exploration allows for deeper understanding and more effective treatment. With the innovative synthesis and specific techniques the author provides, the clinician has tools to carry on the work of moving the field of psychotherapy forward as well as work ever more effectively with patients.
Table of Contents
CHAPTER 1: ARRIVAL IN WONDERLAND
CHAPTER 2: SPIRITUALITY AND IMAGINATION
CHAPTER 3: UNCONSCIOUS COMMUNICATION AND THE UNCANNY
CHAPTER 4: THE NEUROPSYCHOLOGY OF "AHA" MOMENTS
CHAPTER 5: THE BIOLOGY OF IMAGINATION
CHAPTER 6: TRANSFORMATIVE DREAMWORK: EMBODIED IMAGINATION
CHAPTER 7: TRAUMA: IMAGINATION INTERUPTED
CHAPTER 8: HOW ART HEALS
CHAPTER 9: DESIRE’S AROUSAL
Dr. Leanne Domash has had a life-long interest in the creative process and the intersection of imagination, spirituality and psychotherapy. She is a psychologist/psychoanalyst, writer and playwright and Certified Embodied Imagination Practitioner. Dr. Domash has written and spoken widely about the creative process, the uses of imagination, the healing power of art, the value of dreamwork and the implicit spirituality embedded in the psychotherapy process. Dr. Domash is Clinical Consultant in the New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis; Voluntary Psychologist, Mt. Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center, New York, NY; Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai, New York, NY. She maintains a private practice in New York.
"As the relationship between our body and creative imagination moves increasingly to center stage in the research of our human condition – in studies of trauma, creativity, psychotherapy, placebo, biology, artificial intelligence and the arts – along comes a book that pulls it all together. With scholarly accuracy and solid research into a wide variety of fields that underlie theory formation in the study of psychotherapy as a creative art, Dr Leanne Domash has written a book I had been waiting for. While eminently practical and full of case examples, it shows scientific undercurrents in the rapidly changing science of psychotherapy and creativity. Their foundations in neuroscience, biology and chaos theory are explained in an elegant and fully embodied style we can all understand." Robert Bosnak, PsyA, Jungian psychoanalyst, originator of the Embodied Imagination method; Teaching Instructor at SUNY Upstate Medical University, Department of Psychiatry.
"If I had chosen another life path as a religious leader, I would bless this book for tackling the role of uncertainty and faith within psychotherapy. And there is so much more to be had. Author Leanne Domash covers many thorny topics at the heart of healing—the role of desire, inspiration, surprise, strangeness, intuition, and wonder. This is a Wonderland of a book, a dream space, an alchemical kettle for simmering creativity and imagination. By revealing her own doubts and vulnerabilities along the way, Domash walks her talk while providing a unique and persuasive synthesis of research that points towards an inherently creative universe, right down to the cellular level. This is a must read for all therapists wishing to enhance their creative faculties." Terry Marks-Tarlow, PhD, clinical psychologist, Santa Monica, CA; author of Psyche’s Veil, Clinical Intuition in Psychotherapy and A Fractal Epistemology for a Scientific Psychology.
"Drawing upon thousands of years of insights into the vast potential of human imagination from the Kabbalists and Maimonides to current psychoanalytic theory and neuropsychology, Leanne Domash offers us not simply a book to read but a space in which to explore and expand our notions of psychotherapeutic healing, the use of dreams, the vast potential locked in the therapeutic relationship and the emergence of the therapist’s own unique voice. This profoundly rich book compellingly opens up a unique perspective on the many ways that imagination and creativity are at the core of psychotherapeutic healing and authentic living itself." Robert Grossmark, PhD, ABPP, NYU Postdoctoral Program in Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy; author of The Unobtrusive Relational Analyst: Explorations in Psychoanalytic Companioning.