Felt senses of self and no-self in therapy

Luczaj, Sarah (2015) Felt senses of self and no-self in therapy. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

[thumbnail of SARAH_LUCZAJ_THESIS.pdf]
Download (1MB) | Preview


The thesis develops Gendlin's concept of the felt sense in two directions, and
introduces parallel concepts of self. It starts by examining western and eastern
cultural contexts, neuroscientific conceptualisations and linguistic issues as
they relate to self, using the lens of Gendlin's two ways of relating to the world
̶ interpreting according to the unit model and thinking beyond patterns, to
point out conceptual confusions. Buddhist philosophy and practice are
discussed as methods of undoing such conceptual confusions in order to
relieve suffering, with self as an independent, stable, substantial entity being
the primary example of such a confusion. Dualism is identified as the basic
misconception from which suffering ensues. Non-duality is investigated as a
spiritual endstate, an integral part of the goals of humanistic therapies and an
intrinsic element in 'carrying forward', then compared with Gendlin's implicit
intricacy, Sartre's Being-in-itself and intersubjective theories. A small
qualitative study investigates what happens when felt senses of self are
intentionally produced or accessed by focusing. A continuum of experiences is
described, ranging from self to no-self, with trauma proving a major block to
both self and no-self experiencings. The felt sense is re-defined in two ways, as
an extending boundary and as a direct referent. A sense of self is also
considered both as a boundary drawing exercise, and a direct referent. Self
may function in either of these forms on a relative level, constructively or
destructively, according to circumstances and conditions, while on an
ontological level no such single entity may be proven to exist. The conclusion
is drawn that self and no-self form a kind of twisting human thread, which
shows, at any one moment, just one side of a duality. These sides are
conceptually, rather than actually, distinct.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Education and Lifelong Learning
Depositing User: Jackie Webb
Date Deposited: 07 Jun 2016 09:50
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2016 09:50
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/59247

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item