What is psychosynthesis? The Italian psychotherapist Roberto Assagioli took inspiration from many different sources when he developed his ideas about psychosynthesis: spiritual texts, scientific papers, the psychology of Freud and Jung, philosophy, poetry, art and literature. But while he worked as a doctor and contributed to psychiatric journals, Assagioli’s work is an eclectic blend of the practical and the spiritual.
Much of what he wrote was not published in his life time, but his main published work — The Act of Will — is as good a self-help book as any you will find on the bookshelves nowadays. His other main work, Psychosynthesis, is more like a collection of essays, tips for living, philosophy and psycho-spiritual observations.
This page will introduce some important ideas in Assagioli’s work, including the iconic diagrams of the Egg and the Star which have been reproduced in almost every text on Assagioli’s thinking. Most people who knew him, however, focus less on the explicit psychotherapeutic theories and more on the spiritual depth and compassion of his personality: his kindness, humour, and astonishing personal warmth,
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“Those who have tried have been able to reach a state of pure I-consciousness, self-identity, realization of oneself as a living center of awareness. This is well known to psychologists in the East because they are interested in the experience, value it, and therefore use the techniques appropriate to achieving it.”
The Star Diagram and the Egg Diagram
The most iconic images of Psychosynthesis are the Star diagram which indicates aspects of the Will in relation to the Self, and the Egg diagram which depicts the different states of Consciousness. These images are taken from Wikipedia and with attribution to http://www.psychosynthesisonline.com/psychosynthesis-clip-art.html