Talk:Transpersonal psychology

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This page has been praised[edit]

I have just been at the 2011 conference of the Transpersonal Section of the British Psychological Society, where this article was praised! ACEOREVIVED (talk) 18:23, 19 September 2011 (UTC)

So that is good to know - that an article has been praised by a member of a body which would represent people knowledgeable about subject! ACEOREVIVED (talk) 20:04, 19 September 2011 (UTC)


Transpersonal Psychology can be defined as Parapsychology - that's why quacks like Charles T. Tart and David Fontana have embraced it with open arms — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:46, 31 January 2013 (UTC)

Hi, the Talk page is for discussing the article. In what way would you like to change the article? Lova Falk talk 13:55, 31 January 2013 (UTC)

If it's to do with spiritualism, the article and subject matter should be transferred to parapsychology, it's on the verge of quackery — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:29, 1 February 2013 (UTC)

There is no need to transfer the content of this article to the Parapsychology-article. Transpersonal Psychology is an independent field of study, with different epistemological tools than Parapsychology. There is even a Textbook of Transpersonal Psychology and Psychiatry (Published by Basic Books), an Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, a peer-reviewed Journal of Transpersonal Psychology, and a Transpersonal Psychology Section within The British Psychological Society.--Hawol (talk) 16:55, 14 March 2013 (UTC)

I concur completely with everything that Hawol has said. Transpersonal psychology is a very distinct field from parapsychology, they are not at all the same in their focus and methodology. (And the fact that you used the term 'spiritualism' to describe transpersonal psychology shows I'm afraid that you have a very limited grasp of what this discipline encompasses). I should also add that I find some of the comments above rather offensive. If you have substantive critiques to make, by all means make them, this is how human knowledge is extended. But merely throwing the term 'quack' at individuals you disagree with, is simply offensive, particularly when applied to those two individuals above. I have read enough of Charles Tart's material to respect the quality of the mind behind it. And as for the late David Fontana, he was very widely respected indeed by professional psychologists from all disciplines (in the UK and worldwide). He played a significant role in the governance of the UK professional body, the British Psychological Society (of which he was a Fellow), was a full professor at Cardiff University for many years, and made substantial contributions to educational psychology, the psychology of religion, and transpersonal psychology. By all means put forward substantive criticisms, if you wish, and develop a dialogue. But simply throwing the name 'quack' at such a highly-respected academic does you no credit. DoctorMartin (talk) 21:58, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

Embedded lists[edit]

I don't see any problems with embedded lists in this article anymore. I propose to remove the tag.--Hawol (talk) 15:47, 26 November 2013 (UTC)

Agree - I support your proposal Depthdiver (talk) 22:23, 26 November 2013 (UTC)

section "Use of Buddhist concepts", some thoughts[edit]

Quote: --- Use of Buddhist concepts From the standpoint of Buddhism and Dzogchen, Elías Capriles [89] [90][91] has objected that transpersonal psychology fails to distinguish between the transpersonal condition of nirvana, which is inherently liberating, those transpersonal conditions which are within samsara and which as such are new forms of bondage (such as the four realms of the arupyadhatu or four arupa lokas of Buddhism, in which the figure-ground division dissolves but there is still a subject-object duality), and the neutral condition in which neither nirvana nor samsara are active that the Dzogchen teachings call kun gzhi, in which there is no subject-object duality but the true condition of all phenomena (dharmata) is not patent (and which includes all conditions involving nirodh or cessation, including nirodh samapatti, nirvikalpa samadhis and the samadhi or turiya that is the supreme realization of Patañjali's Yoga darshana). In the process of elaborating what he calls a meta-transpersonal psychology, Capriles has carried out conscientious refutations of Wilber, Grof and Washburn, which according to Macdonald & Friedman [92] will have important repercussions on the future of transpersonal psychology. ---

This part seems very confused to me. The use of terms such as "transpersonnal nirvana" and "the neutral condition [...] kun hzhi" seems hasardeaous. 1: To my knowledge there is in no way concept of "transpersonnal Nirvana" in Buddhism. Nirvana is at first, a personnal experience. So how could such experience be truelly transpersonnal ? The experience of Nirvana by two behing could be the same experience and so there is a comon experience which is a transpersonnal factor but it is not to condition sine qua non for a true "transpersonnal Nirvana" *** 2: If this experience of Nirvana could be "located", like stocked, in the transpersonnal space, the problem is not it's existence or it's non existence but it's accessibility. Having the ingredients and even the recipe to cook a cake doesn't tell you where is oven or how big it is. Thus, mixing a concept of "Transpersonnal" and "Nirvana" has nothing to do with Buddhism view but has to do with analitycal philosophi. It is like trying to compare two painting by only considering their weight. It has nothing to do with the art of painting. 3: Mixing a Buddist view (wihch is, here, not related to a modelisation) with a transpersonnal modeling, has to be done with correct links which would effectively link the two things in a correct way. If you try to link a tailoring thread with a needle by rolling the thread around the needly, you won't be able to tailor anything. 4: Dzogchen IS NOT Buddhism! Mixing the view of Dzogchen and the view of Buddhism is terribly wrong in most cases even if they share some common points and may be linked one to another, they are not the same "matters". Anyway, if trying to make links (which would be out of both Dzogchen and Buddhism tradionnal (and historical?!) perspective) it is eventually possible to create a kind of brigde which could be of some use for other perspectives of view:

About: "and the neutral condition in which neither nirvana nor samsara are active that the Dzogchen teachings call kun gzhi" From the Dzogchen perspective, (resumed) Nirvana is present since the beginnings but the consciouness needed to experience Nirvana is not recognised, thus Nirvana could be searched "in the socks" or "in the skies", without the correct consciouness to experience it, there would be no possibility to experience it. Thus, kun gzhi is also a state where the consciouness needed to experience Nirvana is not active. Said another way, kun gzhi is also a kind of ignorance. At least, ignorance of the knowledge and/or (and, or, or and&or!) experience of the consciouness which is needed to experience Nirvana. Knows that even if such consciouness manifest it is not necessary permanent! Thus, if Nirvana could be experienced by luck while for a little time the consciouness needed is here, if this consciouness is not stable, Nirvana would disapear quickly!

About "kun gzhi is a condition [...]"in which there is no subject-object duality but the true condition of all phenomena (dharmata) is not patent [...]"": Here again, the problem is also about not having the right tool to meet a phenomena. But the sentence quoted here is like saying "there is electricity anywere in the univers"... Well okay, but without a volt-meter what's the point ?

Thus what relate to kun gzhi and Nirvana or (what i understood to be) a "transpersonnal Nirvana", relate to the cause of non Nirvana. Here is (philosophicaly said) "once again", the trouble of the reflections but also where stand the key point. I may (possibly) explain a bit if comments and critizisms to this text show interrests anyway, may be i was really out of topic but if not the case: the mixings made in the quoted paragraph are totally out of any traditionnal and knowledgeable understanding. It looks to me like trying to play with anything and all and hoping to create the philosophical stone with such ingredients poor into a mixer for instant results. Technically, such alchemy always end up with a soapy goo.

If anyone dares to link the Rigpa state with the Jhana states uncorrectly, may this entity be oath bound for 50k years of Philosophical teachings and tradionnal practices!

-ODVL — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:54, 28 July 2014 (UTC)

I agree that this section (Capriles and criticism) could possibly benefit from a re-write. I don't know wether the original contributor of this material is still in touch with the article, but if so I encourage him/her to simplify the criticism of Capriles in terms that are more understandable to the layman, or a person not familiar with the sophisticated interpretations (hermeneutics) of Buddhism. That said, the original input, which is (after all) based on credible sources, is appreciated.--Hawol (talk) 10:49, 23 August 2014 (UTC)

discipline distinguished by its unique underlying theory not unique objects of study?[edit]

IMHO non transpersonal psychologists (as well as lay people) are well aware of phenomena of religious conversion, peak experience, altered states of consciousness etc. They just explain these in "reductionist" terms that don't involve spirituality, transcendental, life force and other modern shamanism under cloak of science; preferring terms like motivation, sensory overload, double bind etc. So transpersonal psychology seems notable and distinct in their inquiries' theoretical framework rather than their object. (talk) 19:09, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Well, there seems to be overlapping interests with other disciplines...I agree. Ferrer actually integrated a lot of insights from Religious Studies into his Transpersonal theory in his landmark book "Revisioning Transpersonal Theory". --Hawol (talk) 20:57, 29 December 2014 (UTC)