This issue is special for many reasons. It celebrates the release of our new book, some 2 years in the making, but the main message from Matt and myself is that our book stands on the shoulders of many before us. Without all the wonderful people that have provided research, experience and wisdom, this book would not exist.
But there is a special contributor that has been the source of everything we have written about – humanity. All the work of the experts, the sensitive, the intuitive, the philosophers, the thinkers, and the doers, has been to try and understand what it is to be human, to be a human being.
This is no easy task as we are an incredibly complex system that is not limited to a linear mechanical interpretation, but requires a non-linear organic understanding that needs the cooperation of many disciplines to comprehend. And this incredibly complex system that we are, both individually and corporately, can break down for a host of reasons, leaving us diseased, traumatised, depressed and anxious.
What we propose in our book is that these different aspects of human difficulty are not isolated or dissociated from each other. We may differentiate them for the purpose of study, but they are components of the whole system from which our humanity emerges. To better understand, and help each other, we need at least some grasp of what is going on within us and how we are impacted by what is going on around us. We are benefited to know about us.
Practitioners that deal with mental health, such as psychotherapists, psychologists, medical practitioners, and counsellors face a real challenge: people present with a mental health issue because they don’t feel ok which may only be a simplistic indicator that something more serious which may not only be a mental health problem is going wrong within the complex “human system”. The problem may be biological, psychological or sociological, or a combination. This is the challenge our book seeks to address to assist all mental health professionals.
In this issue, we include the book’s Foreword by John Arden; a deeper look into the issues of schizophrenia and hemispheric imbalance by Matthew Dahlitz; an exploration of grief and loss as a mind-body healing process from Kathryn Rossi; a insightful conversation with Richard Brown about our experience of emotions in and out of consciousness; an independent review of the book from Gunnel Minett; and a Last Word that examines a key word from the title of the book – Let’s talk about this word, “science”.
Matt and I hope you enjoy this issue being freely available and encourage you to share the access link widely. It is time to make some noise about the 21st Century Therapist.
RICHARD HILL | EDITOR