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The Unravelling and Radical Hope

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart;
the centre cannot hold
Yeats ‘The Second Coming’

Yeats was writing in the aftermath of the trauma of First World War and suggests that an apocalypse might be on its way. He ends the poem with:?‘And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?’
In the series we will explore the apocalyptic fantasies that are visiting our clients and ourselves as we attempt to face into bearing what might seem unbearable – including the disillusionment of hope and the unleashing of the cultural shadow of grievance, hatred, prejudice and entitlement. The hope, that is not an escape, comes through bearing this together – not in a heroic manner but through the exposure of our fears, estrangement and vulnerability. We will draw on the stories from previous cultures and novelists that have a emptied to face the ending of how they have made meaning in our world.


This series of evenings with a whole day to start is for counsellors and psychotherapists to share and re-connect together on the apparent tear in the fabric of our culture. This will lead to the unfolding theme of what reparative work might be called for in response to this rupture and whether we have the skills and courage to engage outside the familiarity of the consulting room. The aim is to explore how an extension of therapeutic work could lead to more direct work with our cultural malaise and if a radical new hope could be birthed out of facing into the cultural shadow.
Themes include:

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