Satanic error: the value of William Blakes mythology for clinical practice and everyday life
The poet and artist William Blake was profoundly affected by the impact of the industrial revolution and railed against ‘satanic mills’. For Blake these ‘mills’ represent an aspect of the human mind that is in a state of repetitive ‘error’ that has an alarming impact on the individual and society. Blake offers a powerful experiential portal or ‘cipher’ into both this ‘mechanical’ state and liberation from it through his writings and illustrations of ‘Satan.’ Blake’s explorations can be seen to be in the same territory as, but to pre-date the work of, Freud, Jung, Bion and also later analytic writers. More recently McGilchrist (2012) in 'The Master and his Emissary' powerfully adds to Blake’s insights with a wealth of contemporary research relating to a dangerous over-valuation of left-brain, scientific processing in the Western world coupled with a denigration of the profound relational and integrative qualities that right brain functions promote.
This fully illustrated, stand-alone talk is open to all with an interest in Blake, in self-development, as well as to counsellors, psychotherapists and analysts. It will include a summary and further development of themes explored in Carol’s paper 'Evil, Imagination and the Unrepressed Unconscious: the Value of William Blake’s Satanic ‘Error’ for Clinical Practice'. This paper won the 2014 British Journal of Psychotherapy’s Rozsika Parker Prize.
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The British Psychotherapy Foundation is a strong professional organisation providing access to treatment for the public, education and training.