Therapy Toronto Psychotherapy Definitions
- The ancient Greeks developed the idea of character as something that one is by nature and which influences what one does and who we are. Character was more or less a constant for them, and not amenable to change. The Christian idea of change redeveloped the concept of character through its own early analysis of the virtues and vices of individuals.
Within the post-Freudian tradition in psychoanalysis, character refers to the pioneering and controversial work of Wilhelm Reich, whose influential Character Analysis considered the influence of neurotic psychic structures on physicality.
This places Reich within the classical tradition of psychosomatic philosophers. He was repudiated by the psychoanalytic establishment, possibly becase of his radical political views.
The power of his approach is undeniable and his influence on emotional bodywork has been profound, especially in the work of Alexander Lowen, Pirrakos and Keleman.
Reich believed in the healing power of what he referred to as 'orgasmic' life, which in his mind encompassed not simply the fulfilled sexual act but a particular form of open, responsive and vital living in the ordinary world.
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