What's the difference...

A commenter asked what the difference is between Jungian analysis and Jungian psychotherapy, which is a very good question. 

Legally there is no way to keep any therapist from calling herself a Jungian analyst or psychotherapist. However, a Jungian analyst should have trained and completed a course of study at a certified Jungian training institute and thus will carry the letters IAAP after their name. This indicates that they have met the criteria for certification as established by the International Association for Analytical Psychology. In their course of study, which is roughly equivalent to a doctoral program, they will have studied Jungian psychology, of course, mythology, fairy tales, and other areas relevant to Jungian practice. They will also have been in Jungian analysis at least 100 hours before beginning training and will have continued throughout their training. And they will have had considerable clinical supervision from Jungian analysts. Completion of such programs includes writing a thesis.

Unfortunately the IAAP has not established criteria for psychotherapists who wish to practice as Jungians. I think it is reasonable to ask of any therapist so describing herself what her background in analytical psychology is, because in my opinion it should approximate analytical training. A workshop or two and some reading are not sufficient in my view to call oneself a Jungian psychotherapist. I think it is reasonable to expect that such a therapist has experienced Jungian analysis as a patient, has read extensively in the Jungian literature, and participates in ongoing education via workshops and seminars made available through Jung institutes.

Academic degrees in Jungian psychology are rare and hard to come by. In the US there is one place to receive such education on the graduate level and that is Pacifica Graduate Institute. The University of Essex in the UK also has such programs. And there are programs in Australia. In the US, Jungian psychology is pretty much absent from psychology curricula on the undergraduate or graduate level.

In my own case, I have been in and continue with a long personal analysis. I worked for several years with a woman analyst and now work with a male. I have received clinical supervision over a period of 10 years from 4 different Jungian analysts. I have participated in hundreds of hours of workshops and seminars at Jung Institutes in Chicago, Boston, and Zurich. I have read widely and deeply in the literature of Jungian psychology. I seriously considered analytical training but at the time I wanted to go, the nearest institute was accepting very few candidates so I decided instead to get my doctorate in Jungian studies. I already had solid clinical training and 25 years of clinical experience. So I set out in my doctoral program to include the reading and coursework in areas other than clinical that analytical training would provide. In my view, my personal training course, pursued over many years, is pretty much equivalent to that of a graduate of any of the Jungian analytical programs. I do not call myself an analyst, however, because I am not certified and I honor that process.

In a session, the difference between a Jungian analyst and a Jungian psychotherapist, given some equivalence in background, is likely quite small. Certification and training is no guarantee of excellence nor that you will find a good fit with any given therapist or analyst. So I see. as always, the relationship as more critical than the training of the therapist. An exception to this comes if you are interested in eventually pursuing training as an analyst, because every program I know of requires at least 100 hours with a certified Jungian analyst.

So that covers the difference between Jungian analysts and psychotherapists. Both Jungian analysis and psychotherapy can involve one session a week or several. The patient may sit facing the therapist or analyst or lie on a couch. Issues of technique are variable for both groups and depend a lot on where the clinician locates himself in the post-Jungian universe. In both analysis and psychotherapy in the Jungian model, there is an interest in meaning of symptoms and problems over diagnostic labels, frequent work with dreams and other forms of work with the unconscious such as sand tray, active imagination, drawing and the like. There is a recognition that both parties to the work are changed by the work. I will explore more deeply the basic tenets of Jungian psychology in later posts.

© Cheryl Fuller, 2018. All  rights reserved.