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An online interpersonal support group stirs up a mix of feelings

         

            "Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried, grapple them unto thy soul with hoops of steel."

"This above all: to thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man."         Both quotations by Polonius in Shakespeare's "Hamlet"

Psychedelics: a group retreat - the ceremony, integration & follow-up.

If we have data, let’s look at data. If all we have are opinions, let’s go with mine.

- Jim Barksdale, former Netscape CEO

     Psychedelics: a group retreat - the ceremony, integration & follow-up

                     "Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow-ripening fruit."   Aristotle 

The previous posts in this sequence are 'Psychedelics: a group retreat - initial thoughtsand 'Psychedelics: a group retreat - meeting up, orientation & the ceremony' 

Psychedelics: a group retreat - lessons: playlists, nature & integration

“ A bird will drop frozen from a bough without once having felt sorry for itself. ” - D.H. Lawrence

     Psychedelics: a group retreat - lessons: playlists, nature & integration

“If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.”  Albert Einstein

           “After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”  Aldous Huxley

Psychedelics: a group retreat - lessons: ceremonies, duration & organisation

A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.

- Einstein

Psychedelics: a group retreat - lessons: ceremonies, duration & organisation

"And now let us believe in a long year that is given to us, new, untouched, full of things that have never been."   Rainer Maria Rilke 

Psychedelics: a group retreat - meeting up, orientation & the ceremony.

Friendship is the single most important factor influencing our health, well-being, and happiness.

- Robin Dunbar

     Psychedelics: a group retreat - meeting up, orientation & the ceremony

"Today we can walk around together, talk, eat, and be silent together.  Later I believe we'll have the opportunity to act and suffer together.  All that is necessary to 'make someone's acquaintance' as they say."  Pierre Sogol, professor of mountaineering, speaking in Rene Daumal's book "Mount Analogue". 

5th international 'breaking convention' psychedelic conference: 1st morning - microdosing and group retreats & ceremonies

'Breaking Convention' - the fifth biennial international conference on psychedelics - took place at Greenwich University in London from 16th-18th August.  There were apparently 1,200 or so attendees for the 6 concurrent programmes - academic, workshop, performance, cinema, entertainment & installations - as well as an art exhibition.  I went primarily because it allowed me to hear pretty much all the relevant research groups in the UK present on their current findings.  As you can see from the other quite extensive writing about psychedelics on this website, I'm very interested in the encouraging emerging research highlighting potential therapeutic value of psychedelics.  Although I focussed on the academic programme, there was much too much even here to manage an ove

Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal group memberships (what can we do?)

Circumstances are beyond human control, but our conduct is in our own power. - Benjamin Disraeli

   Social networks: social identity & the importance of both formal & informal groups (what can we do?)

 

key points: 

the social identity model highlights the value of group membership (more & less formal) for both psychological & physical wellbeing - are there groups you would like to join (or initiate) and are there helpful ways you can increase the sense of the importance to you of some of the groups you're a member of (for example by increasing your involvement with them).

Learning to run therapy groups

I run an annual five day training for counselling psychology students on facilitating groups.  I'm using this blog post to upload some of the slides.  For example here's a collection on the current state of psychotherapy & some suggestions on potentially helpful ways of moving forward.  

More to follow! ...

 

 

 

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