Terrapsychological Inquiry : Restorying Our Relationship with Nature, Place, and Planet book cover
1st Edition

Terrapsychological Inquiry
Restorying Our Relationship with Nature, Place, and Planet

ISBN 9780367859213
Published March 16, 2020 by Routledge
172 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations

FREE Standard Shipping
USD $49.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

Terrapsychological Inquiry is a qualitative research methodology seeking a form of inquiry that takes seriously our intense inner responses to the state of the natural world. Terrapsychology is a theory and practice approach that studies, from the standpoint of lived experience, how the world gets into the heart. Oceans and skies, trees and hills, rivers and soils, and even built things like houses, cities, ports, and planes: How do they show up for us inwardly? How do our moods, feelings, and dreams reflect what happens in the world?

Terrapsychological Inquiry evolved over a decade of experimentation by graduate students, instructors, workshop leaders and presenters, and other embodied creatives to offer a truly Earth-honoring mode of story-based qualitative inquiry, one that changes all involved from passive spectators of the doings of the world into active, sensitive participants. Learn how to use this methodology of reenchantment in a variety of settings inside and outside academia, and by doing so reenter an animate world. 

Written in an engaging and accessible style, this introduction to a new research methodology will be of great interest to students and scholars of environmental psychology, ecotherapy, and environment and sustainability studies more generally.

Table of Contents


Introduction: Inquiry as Response to the Animate World

Chapter 1: What Is Terrapsychology?

"My Name is San Diego"

Hearing the Soul of Place
A Widening and Deepening Inquiry

Terrapsychology’s Ancestors and Allies

Evolutions of Terrapsychology

Chapter 2: Philosophy of the Methodology

Ontological Premises

Epistemological Observations

Commitments of Terrapsychology
Sharing Flesh with the World

Animism Reexamined

Chapter 3: Preparing for the Work

What Kinds of Research Projects Are Suitable for T. I.?

Comparison with Other Methodologies

Formulating the Research Question

Levels and Degrees of Topic Involvement

Understanding Symbol, Dream, Archetype, and Myth

Chapter 4: Terrapsychological Inquiry in Practice

Phase 1: PREPARE for the work

Phase 2: INVESTIGATE the topic

Phase 3: COAGULATE the results

Managing Ecological Complexes

Finishing the Practice Phase

Chapter 5: Analyzing the Data

Data Analysis as Ritual




Thematic Analysis

Chapter 6: What the Findings Mean

Making Sense of What Was Found

Validity, Reliability, Generalizability

Significance of the Findings

Chapter 7: Sharing the Results – and Onward!

Structuring Your Writing

Storytelling Your Findings

Communicating the Nonverbal

After the Study


Appendix I: Common Research Obstacles

Appendix II: Place Assessment Checklist

Appendix III: Creating Heartsteads

Appendix IV: Exploring Deep Ancestry


View More



Craig Chalquist, PhD, is core faculty in the Department of East–West Psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies, USA. 


"While psychology has taught us how to understand the ways our family has shaped us psychologically, it has neglected how the places we inhabit also profoundly create our psychic space. How are we to get to know--really know--the places our lives unfold in and that are inextricably woven into our memories, thoughts, and images? How do we develop our relationship with a place so that its unconscious layers begin to reveal themselves to us? Let Craig Chalquist be your guide. He has devoted himself to these tasks over several decades. In this insightful book he crystallizes what he has learned so that others can launch their own inquiries into the places that matter to them. As you explore terrapsychological inquiry, stand on his shoulders and tell us what you come to understand!" - Mary Watkins, Ph.D. Chair, Depth Psychology M.A./Ph.D. Depth Psychology Program, Pacifica Graduate Institute. Author of Mutual Accompaniment and the Creation of the Commons. Co-author of Toward Psychologies of Liberation

"An important new guide for all who struggle to find original, creative ways of understanding and addressing this critical moment in human-nature relations. The denial of subjective experience – in humans and other Earthly beings -- by conventional psychology has been the ultimate modern absurdity, aptly described by Craig Chalquist as the delusion that "jumping off a bridge to go swimming [is] no different from jumping off a bridge to commit suicide." This narrowly limiting, Procrustean approach is part of the reason we now find ourselves tone deaf and autistic to Earth’s warnings and cries. Chalquist’s beautifully written Terrapsychological Inquiry offers us a creative way forward as we relearn deep listening and resonance with all that is." - Linda Buzzell, co-editor, Ecotherapy: Healing with Nature in Mind (Sierra Club Books/Counterpoint)