Whereas Subtext and Gestures are essentially about the same subject, body language, the treatment in each case is quite different. Julius Fast, author of Subtext, emphasizes hidden meaning. Encouraging the reader to be aware of subtle cues in order to master situations and to communicate more effectively in order to ensure that one’s gestures are in congruence with one’s will.
Subtext is a book full of practical advice on how to successfully make one’s way in the contemporary workplace. It is about how people communicate to each other by way of covert signals in addition to the spoken exchange that takes place between them. The spoken word is text whereas the covert language, often more revealing, is subtext.
An important principle of Jungian psychology involves synchronicity or meaningful coincidences of inner and outer events. The idea of synchronicity is not new, but was well known in earlier times, including by the natural philosophers of the European Middle Ages. They referred to such experiences in their theory of correspondentia that includes the comprehensive idea of the sympathy of all things. Thus, according to Hippocrates (as reported in Jung, 1975c, p. 490), “There is one common breathing, all things are in sympathy. …” linking the smallest particle in correspondence to the whole. Jung brought clarity to understanding such experiences, differentiating authentic synchronicity from causally-induced events of all kinds, including magic causality, where a chain of events is initiated though an esoteric ritual of some form.
In this paper I describe four different aspects of the group experience from the imaginal perspective. They include the inter-subjective imaginal group field, a dream and an extra-ordinary group experience, the evolution of the class as a group and, finally, an oracle for the following year’s group experience. I conclude that the group functions within a complex imaginal matrix.
This essay is a reflection on my experience with the group therapy process with emphasis on one particular session. Although group therapy may have some value in educating the social attitude, I find that authentic experience and individuality is generally repressed, rendering the meetings boring and unfulfilling. This, at least, is my experience with cognitive oriented groups. Based on my reflections, however, I eventually conclude that there may be the possibility of a group therapy that is more authentic, which taps into a deeper level of the psyche and which allows for the expression of archetypal energy, both positive and negative.