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Primal Therapy


Primal Therapy rejects analysis and verbalisation found in most other forms of psychotherapy. Instead, practitioners encourage screaming, crying and the beating of objects to express emotions thought to have been repressed since infancy and childhood. Its followers believe that the person can better identify their true feelings and needs through the Primal approach.

History

Primal Therapy was developed by child psychologist Arthur Janov; his book The Primal Scream (1970) was particularly influential. Janov would attract considerable attention after it was revealed that John Lennon was a one-time patient of his. Although it has since lost some of its popularity, particularly in psychotherapeutic and academic circles, it is still practiced all over the world.

Approach

Primal therapy is intended to help individuals come to terms with their sub-conscious. To primal therapists the unconscious can store feelings of negativity created by past events (the Primal). In turn, present issues or events can sometimes trigger these hidden feelings. (connected feeling) A primal therapist will encourage the client to identify these unconscious sources of tension and, by the use of cathartic techniques rid themselves of the negativity.

How can it help?

Primal therapy takes place individually or in groups. It is widely used to help people to address traumatic events of the past by reliving them. While this may not be suitable for everyone the approach does offer an alternative method of confronting issues that still proves popular with many.



Primal therapy resources

Dr. Arthur Janov's Primal Centre

The Primal Institute

 
Therapy Guide

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