The Sacred Mirror: Nondual Wisdom & Psychotherapy

By Greenleaf, Ray | Journal of Transpersonal Psychology, July 1, 2004 | Go to article overview

The Sacred Mirror: Nondual Wisdom & Psychotherapy


Greenleaf, Ray, Journal of Transpersonal Psychology


PRENDERGAST, J., FENNER, P., & KRYSTAL, S. (2003). The Sacred Mirror: Nondual wisdom & psychotherapy. St. Paul, Minnesota: Paragon House, ix + 326 pp. ISBN: 1-55778-824-3, paper, $19.95. Reviewed by Ray Greenleaf

From the beginning of Transpersonal Psychology's emergence as a field for serious study, edited compilations of essays regarding transpersonal, holistic, and integral perspectives on psychology have been important additions to books by individual authors such as Wilber, Ram Dass, Grof, Vaughn, Walsh, Washburn and others. The Sacred Mirror: Nondual Wisdom and Psychotherapy, edited by John Prendergast, Peter Fenner, and Sheila Krystal is one of those books. This book gives an excellent overview of this emerging field of inquiry. Each chapter is an important teaching in itself giving the reader many ways to consider the possibilities in the nondual approach to psychotherapy. Each writer in this volume has an important contribution to make toward the potential of bringing forth nondual wisdom in working with clients from a multitude of perspectives. These perspectives, which integrate the nondual approach, range from using a Jungian approach, to working with EMDR protocols.

Starting with Peter Fenner, the founder of the Center for Timeless Wisdom, who is an inspiration and leader in bringing nondual approaches to psychotherapy, the twelve authors and thirteen chapters cover ways of both defining and working with a nondual approach. He, along with many of the authors in this volume, have also produced a series of annual conferences on this important field. In the opening chapter of this book, Peter Fenner defines nondual wisdom and its place in psychology and psychotherapy. He begins by saying that a nondual approach to psychotherapy focuses on "awakening an experience of the unconditioned mind for therapist and client and the ongoing cultivation of this experience" (p. 28). Fenner goes on to say that "The nondual approach to therapy directs people to the experience of the unconditioned mind as a way of transcending suffering and healing the psychological wounds of the past" (p. 29).

The authors write of the importance of awareness, presence and being which are the most often listed subjects in the index, giving us a sense of the importance of these qualities in the ever deepening process of bringing nondual awareness to psychotherapy. Those qualities along with the practice of inquiry and mirroring form the backbone of this approach. Inquiry has always been an important part of both psychotherapy practice and spiritual practice. From Jim Bugental's here and now inquiry to Ramana Maharshi's radical inquiry the importance of these processes are central to the process of transformation and growth. Stephan Bodian's chapter "Deconstructing the Self: The Uses of Inquiry in Psychotherapy and Spiritual Practice", is extremely useful in gaining an understanding of the range of inquiry processes from the conventional analytic and existential-humanistic to the uses of inquiry in the nondual wisdom traditions. The process of mirroring becomes the inspiration for the title of the book when John Prendergast in his chapter "Being Together" says that "Unlike various descriptions of psychological mirroring that focus on the importance of therapists accurately and empathically reflecting back their clients' thought, feelings and sensations, sacred mirroring involves Being mirroring itself" (p. 94), and he goes on to say "When we, as therapists, deepen into Being, we begin to spontaneously take on the function of a sacred mirror" (p. 95).

The authors also speak to the concerns that can arise in the approach of nondual wisdom and psychotherapy. Spiritual bypass, inflation and splitting are the most common pitfalls that can trap a client in the hard work of psychospiritual transformation. Many of the authors in this book also speak to the dangers of the nondual approach becoming another technique or school among many approaches to this work. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Sacred Mirror: Nondual Wisdom & Psychotherapy
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.