12th National Mediation Conference
Excite, produce an uneasy sensation in, (bodily organ); (Biol.) stimulate (organ) into action.
The Concise Oxford Dictionary 1976 Oxford University Press.
The difference between an existing truth and an unrealised truth
It is sometimes assumed that there is an existing truth that can be sought out and discovered.
Bion (1970) asserts that there is no existing truth to be revealed but rather a moving toward a yet unrealised truth
Grotstein, J. S. Do I Dare Disturb the Universe. London: Karnac Books Ltd, 1981.
Bion maintains that learning or evolving comes from “experiencing the experience” (Grotstein, 1981, p. 29).
The difference between an existing truth and an unrealised truth
There is a difference between these two modes of thinking.
The experience comes first followed by the associated thought which realises the truth.
If we reverse that order and direct our thoughts towards seeking out an answer before the experience then it will impede or reverse understanding (the truth) as it unfolds in each moment.
THE THIRD – Ogden 1
It can be understood as the space between the parties or the field which exists whenever the parties and therapist are present together.
The third or the field is jointly created in the conscious and unconscious relationship between the people.
It mostly dissipates when they cease being together in that setting. It fully exists in the shared moment.
THE THIRD – Ogden
In the context of mediation, the third is the creation of the interaction of shared time, space and interrelationship experienced by the mediator and the parties.
Although each party still exists within his or her own subjectivity
It can also be understood as the space between the parties or the field which exists whenever the parties and mediator are present together.
Ogden, T. H. The Analytic Third: Working with Intersubjective Clinical Facts
International Journal of Psychoanalysis, London, 1994
Salzberger –Wittenberg, I Psycho-analytic Insight and Relationships. A Kleinian Approach 1970, Routlegde and Keegan Paul, London, pp 3-19
The problems caused by an attachment to the need to help
The need for the case worker to do something of value may drive them to......... intervene very actively in the clients life without defining the limits of their role and in this way mislead the client into believing that she/he will take on a full and active parental role rather than a professional one.
Bion, W. R. “Notes on Memory and Desire” (1967). In R. Langs (ed.) Classics in Psycho-Analytic Technique. New York: Jason Aronson, 1981.
Bion is not against a therapist “understanding” the reality of a situation.
The danger is the holding of a preconceived understanding that inhibits being in the moment and therefore inhibits the coming to a new understanding.
Freud, S. “Recommendations to Physicians Practising Psycho-Analysis”. (1912). In R. Langs (ed.) Classics in Psycho-Analytic Technique. New York: Jason Aronson, 1981.
It must not be forgotten that the things one hears are for the most part things whose meaning is only recognised later on. Freud
Jacobs, M. The Presenting Past. Milton Keynes: Open University Press, 1995 p 6. McGraw-Hill International, 2005
“Theory only serves us well if it serves the client, and it is primarily clients who make theory, and not theory that makes therapy” Michael Jacobs
Article on the 90-year-old theatre director Peter Brook in the Australian Newspaper July 26-27, 2014 Review page 8-9 by Jane Cornwell
I love tearing things up and, naturally, living in the moment means bringing all one can to the moment-and when the moment is gone, it is gone’.
‘The best actors are those who have managed to work through hang-ups such as vanity and exhibitionism to become increasingly transparent: the real thing in performance is the moment when you are no longer trying to control what is going on and it is flowing through you, like a miniature of the ideal moment in life. When there is no longer any question that you are part of life.’
In sum, teaching psychoanalysis (or mediation) is a paradoxical affair;
someone who is supposed to know teaches someone who wants to know what it means not to know.
Ogden T. H. On Teaching Psychoanalysis Int J Phychoanal 2006; 87:106
Yalom, I.D. Staring at the Sun -Overcoming the Dread of Death, 2008 Scribe Melbourne
No positive change can occur in your life as long as you cling to the thought that the reason for your not living well lies outside yourself. As long as you place responsibility entirely on others who treat you unfairly...... then your situation will remain at an impasse.
You and you alone are responsible for the crucial aspects of your life situation, and only you have the power to change. …..you still have the freedom and choice of adopting various attitudes towards those restraints.
One of Nietzche’s favourite phrases is a amor fati (love your fate): in other words, create the fate that you can love.
Intuition - Definitions
Kahneman – “in common usage the words intuition and premonition are also reserved for past thoughts that turned out to be true”.
Kahnaman- relies on a definition by Herbert Simon “ The situation has provided a cue; this cue has given the expert access to information stored in memory, and information provides the answer. Intuition is nothing more and nothing less than recognition”. Kahnaman referring to Simon states: “ his strong statement reduces the apparent magic of intuition to the everyday experience of memory”
The Concise Oxford Dictionary definition of intuition- “the immediate apprehension of the mind without reasoning”
The Concise Oxford Dictionary defines rational as “rejecting what is unreasonable or cannot be tested by reason in religion or custom”.
Kahhneman/Simon definition of intuition requires the presence of conscious reasoning
The Concise Oxford Dictionary definition of intuition requires the absence of conscious reasoning.
Wilfred Bion - suggests that what is required is a positive act of refraining from your memories, desires and the need to understand what is happening. He acknowledges that we all have memory, desires and a wish to understand. Having them is not the problem. The problem is our attachment to them in the session. This attachment inhibits the intuitive thought coming into being.
Gardner, J Grendel 2008 Random House
Everything fades - alternatives exclude
Alternatives exclude- for every yes there must be no and every positive choice means you have to relinquish others Yalom, I.D. Staring at the Sun –Overcoming the Dread of Death, 2008 Scribe Melbourne p-93
Mindfulness, Manipulation and Neutrality
The call for mediator manipulation of discourse in the name of neutrality implicitly calls for the mediator’s internal assessment of the power dynamics in the dialogue between himself and the parties and the formulation of language that manipulates a dialogue so as to balance out the power of the parties.
Meditation strengthens practitioners ability to concentrate on the present moment.
Therefore the cultivation of such awareness by mediators is helpful in maintaining neutrality (while manipulating) and in attaining just outcomes in mediation.
MINDFULNESS MEDITATION,THE CULTIVATION OF AWARENESS, MEDIATOR NEUTRALITY, AND THE POSSIBILITY OF JUSTICE Evan M. Rock 6 Cardozo J. Conflict Resol. 347 2004-2005
The Third – Impartiality and Neutrality
The mediator’s connection via ‘the third’ has an impact on the concepts of impartiality and neutrality as everything the mediator experiences, everything the mediator thinks and does flows into ‘the moment’.
It is a moment that is shared by all parties in the mediation. It is the creation of the conscious and unconscious relationship between all of them.
Because it is a shared experience all parties, including the mediator, add to or subtract from it with their conscious and unconscious thoughts and actions. This interconnection (inter-subjectivity) is referred to as ‘the third’.
The Process of Learning to Overcome What We Have Learnt. Ogden
We do have to learn how to be mediators, doctors, psychologists.
However when we practice we have to learn to overcome what we have learned in order to be free to create mediation (medicine or therapy) anew with each party/patient (Ogden).
In other words we have to remain fresh and not just rely on past ways of doing things. Ogden refers to the art of learning to forget what one has learned
“ Analytic learning is biphasic. Firstly we learn analytic procedures including transference and counter-transference. Then we try to learn how to overcome what we have learned in order to be free to create psycho analysis anew with each patient.
These phases are in one sense sequential in that we have to know something before we can forget or overcome it. But, in another sense, particularly after we have completed formal analytic training, we are continually in the process of learning to overcome what we have learnt.” In sum, teaching psychoanalysis (mediation) is a paradoxical affair; someone who is supposed to know teaches someone who wants to know what it means not to know.
Ogden T. H. On Teaching Psychoanalysis Int J Phychoanal 2006; 87:1069-85
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