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
Commitments of Terrapsychology
Sharing Flesh with the World
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
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
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)