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Workshop: Navigating Life Cycles with Dr Susannah Benson

  • Sydney Mechanics School of Arts 280 Pitt Street Sydney, NSW, 2000 Australia (map)

As we navigate our way through life we often seem to be following a cyclic path where we encounter periods of relative stability, intertwined with a forward arc of change and movement which is sometimes experienced slowly—gracefully and at other times—rapidly, chaotically. We all recognise that at times we welcome, sometimes even desire and yearn for change and movement, and that at other times we fight against and resist change and are challenged by unplanned movements.

How we meet change, whether bidden or not, is often a key marker of our underlying resilience and sense of hopefulness. At critical points of personal life-changes, and in times of cultural shifts and turbulence we find that dreams frequently come to the fore, revealing insights and animating the experience of the change at hand.

Dreams reveal patterns of thought, emotion, experience, body, and are encoded with memory triggers, flash-points, or hot-spots of experience that are in play with current experience and events, simultaneously weaving together and creating patterns of knowing and response. Dreams can help us feel into and discriminate the deeper currents, the moving tides of our souls beneath the multi-layered depths of our surface consciousness.

Dreams that come in the service of health and well-being can help us discover a life–forward action, a ‘something’ which seems to come to us from outside our habitual, everyday consciousness and ordinary ways of seeing things and offers something novel—creative. Eugene Gendlin, Philosopher and Phenomenologist, referred to this potential life-forward action of the dream as the ‘gift of the dream’.

 Dreams can be initiatory in nature, signal or signpost that we are at a new beginning— a threshold. When we work with our own dreams, or listen to the dreams of others, we invite a reflective space within to listen more deeply and to become more familiar with our intuitive selves. Listening to dreams as both a practice and a discipline can engage us more fully with the subtle senses of ourselves and others— with soulfulness.

Feeling ensouled can help us to feel more connected and to see more clearly relationships between inner and outer—personal and collective—and past, present and future. Within this expanded field of dream and image, we can often feel inspired or encouraged to meet a challenge or recognise the ‘deadness’ of something we are holding onto in life and the need to accept letting-go and meeting the call of moving on.

 The Navigating Life cycles  workshop will engage us in reflection, conversation, and individual and group dreamwork to highlight how working with and understanding the familiar metaphors and motifs of our dreams can assist us to meet change and to navigate our life journey.

Please bring your dream journals, notepads, and colouring pencils .

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Dr Susannah Benson is an educator and transpersonal counsellor with qualifications and experience in education, transpersonal counselling, social ecology and publishing. She has facilitated dream groups and given workshops and presentations on dreams and creative imaginal processes for over 18 years. Susan holds a doctorate from the University of Western Sydney in Social Ecology. She is Board member and President of the International Association for the Study of Dreams (IASD), and founding President of DreamNetworkAustralia (DNA).

Date: 13 August 2016
Time: 10:00am to 4:00pm
Venue: Level 1 Sydney Mechanics' School
of Arts, 280 Pitt St, Sydney
Cost: Members $120 Non-Members $180 Non-Member
Concession $140

*Psychotherapists and other practitioners can obtain credit for six Professional Development Hours recognised by CAPA, PACFA and ACA for this workshop.

Refund Policy: If the event is cancelled by The Sydney Jung Society, a full refund will be made. If the purchaser cancels within 48 hours of the event, they will be entitled to a 90% refund.