Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Lonergan and therapy

I have always felt that there is more than a strong affinity between psychological therapy and Lonergan's method. But this is a surprisingly direct confirmation, from the man himself:
"As Vernon Gregson has remarked, such reflection is like a therapy. Just as Carl Rogers' client-centered therapy aims at having the client discover in himself the feelings he cannot name or identify, so reflection on one's interior operations is a matter of coming to name, recognize, and identify operations that recur continuously but commonly are thought to be very mysterious." (B. Lonergan, "A Response to Fr Dych," Shorter Papers, CWL 20:301)
But the affinity is not restricted to the procedures of Insight, though of course I find Lonergan repeatedly pointing out that Insight was an exercise in general method. Theological method itself incorporates what you might call group therapy - at the moment of dialectic!

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