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⧈ 3.5.1 Unique Terms.
⚀ 184.108.40.206 Introduction.
⚀ 220.127.116.11 Adjustment—An articulated approach.
⚀ 18.104.22.168 Ambitendencies and ambivalences.
⚀ 22.214.171.124 Development.
⚀ 126.96.36.199 Education and self-education.
⚀ 188.8.131.52 Emotions (a.k.a. values) direct development.
⚀ 184.108.40.206 Hierarchization and value development.
⚀ 220.127.116.11 Mental health and mental illness.
⚀ 18.104.22.168 Psychopathy/psychopath.
⚀ 22.214.171.124 Psychotherapy and autopsychotherapy.
⚀ 126.96.36.199 Unilevel disintegration.
⧈ 3.5.2 Dąbrowski’s Glossary.
⚀ 188.8.131.52 Introduction.
□ There are many terms that are applied uniquely in the context of the theory of positive disintegration and if these terms are used outside this context, they are often seen as paradoxical, or they are misunderstood, or worse, they are seen as negative judgements. There are three basic categories: conventional terms used in a different and unique way. (e.g. adjustment, personality); older terms that are not currently common (e.g. psychoneuroses, dynamism); and terms that Dąbrowski coined himself that cover ideas he developed (e.g. positive disintegration, overexcitability). It can be fairly challenging to learn all of these terms but this reflects Dąbrowski—he was a complex thinker and developed a very complex theory. Here are some examples.
⚀ 184.108.40.206 Adjustment—An articulated approach.
□ Dąbrowski differentiated four types of adjustment; two types of positive adjustment and two types of negative adjustment. These are easier to understand when divided into adjustment and maladjustment.
□ Traditionally, adjustment is perceived as conformity to, and the embracing of, the prevailing values and morality of one’s society. However, Dąbrowski said that to be adjusted to a lower level, sick society is to also be sick. Dąbrowski refers to this as negative adjustment—to be well in step with a mixed-up, lower level society. On the other hand, positive adjustment is adjustment to the way a person or life ought to be—not the way it is.
□ Dąbrowski also described two types of maladjustment. The first, negative maladjustment, is what we traditionally think of as typical antisocial or criminal behavior—violation of social mores for personal gains. The second, positive maladjustment, is a rejection of prevailing social norms based on the perception that they are somehow wrong, or unfair—nonconformity out of conscience. Positive maladjustment represents the conflict between what the individual sees ought to be, versus the way society and life actually is.
⚀ 220.127.116.11 Ambitendencies and ambivalences.
□ In describing unilevel disintegration, Dąbrowski used two terms, the first, ambitendencies refers to equal drives between different choices on the same level. In ambitendencies, I am pulled to go left and I feel equally pulled to go right. The second term emphasizes that the equivalence of the choices that creates feelings of ambivalence. Ambivalence describes the feeling of not seeing or feeling any differences between different choices, for example, going left feels the same as going right.
⚀ 18.104.22.168 Development.
□ Dąbrowski ’s approach to development was complex because he endorsed traditional approaches to explain the psychological development of some traits, but also described unconventional developmental mechanisms for other traits.
□ Traditional approaches to development are ontogenetic and emphasize ontogenesis, the unfolding of a stepwise series of stages, gradually leading from simple to more complex levels and forms. For example, Piaget described four stages of cognitive development: the sensorimotor stage, preoperational stage, concrete operations and formal operations. Normal cognitive development follows these stages in sequence. Each stage is defined in a time-specific manner and new stages are based upon, and emerge from, earlier forms. Dąbrowski endorsed these approaches to cognitive development.
□ However, Dąbrowski also described aspects of development that he believed were nonontogenetic, including emotional development and the third factor. These features do not emerge from earlier stages or levels. For example, Dąbrowski said one’s level of emotional functioning does not automatically arise in the normal course of ontogenetic stages but emerges as a function of other, nonontogenetic conditions. These “other” conditions simply appear in the course of development. This approach gives the theory a somewhat metaphysical element. One implication is that while everyone will display ontogenetic stages, not everyone will display nonontogenetic features (e.g., not all will have third factor or emotion as Dąbrowski uses the term).
□ Dąbrowski also differentiated two qualitatively different types of mental life and development: the heteronomous versus the autonomous. In heteronomous development, morals are derived from sources external to the individual. In autonomous development, on the other hand, morals are developed from within. The heteronomous is determined by biological or social/environmental factors and falls within conventional ontogenetic development. Autonomous development of mental function leads to new forms of mental life which lose their dependence on the biological cycle of life, have lasting effect and are not subject to deterioration associated with old age or other negative biological processes, e.g. somatic illness. Autonomous development, reflecting advanced development, is self-conscious, self-determined, and self-controlled. Autonomous development emerges from more complicated, “other” nonontogenetic sources. Autonomous mental development involves “new forces” of self-determination and autonomy [largely third factor] that transcend normal biological and social determinants. Dąbrowski said that autonomous development is the passing from lower level structures and functions to higher levels as the result of the process of positive disintegration.
□ In describing development, Dąbrowski also emphasized a balanced approach including both cognitive and emotional aspects. He observed that in many cases, development is skewed toward cognitive accomplishments. He called this one-sided development: development that is limited to one talent or ability, or to a narrow range of abilities and mental functions.
⚀ 22.214.171.124 Education and self-education.
□ Dąbrowski compared traditional education, especially in America, to ‘animal training.’ He said that individual development must involve self-education (education of oneself) and include a balance between the intellectual, special abilities and talents, and developing insight into one’s unique essence and emotions. Self-education is a critical part of autopsychotherapy.
⚀ 126.96.36.199 Emotions (a.k.a. values) direct development.
□ One of the most basic aspects of the theory of positive disintegration is the idea that one must get a sense of direction in life by becoming aware of one’s feelings and emotions. Dąbrowski said that in a multilevel perception of life, emotions are the key rudder, providing direction to one’s cognitive abilities. At its most basic level, when faced with a choice in life, the valence of one’s emotions will draw one toward the correct solution and push one away from the wrong solution. One feels good in making the correct choices, given the situation and one’s essence. In psychology this is usually called approach-avoidance motivation.
⚀ 188.8.131.52 Hierarchization and value development.
□ To paraphrase Dąbrowski, life and humanization only begins when the hierarchization of values begins—without hierarchization, life is merely “ordinary.” Hierarchization acts as a developmental process through the discovery and activation of different, higher, emotional levels. To fully appreciate this process, it is important to recognize that Dąbrowski viewed emotions and values synonymously. Development is associated with the differentiation of higher from lower emotions and values. Dąbrowski said one’s unique hierarchy of higher and lower levels of emotions and values reflects the essence of the individual’s character.
□ Hierarchization is driven by psychoneurotic experiences as they disturb and draw attention to the lower levels of values. This helps an individual to gradually become aware of the short comings of lower values—external values adopted without much critical thought from social convention. The individual begins to imagine higher solutions and internal values reflecting one’s unique essence. One’s inner life eventually shifts toward the level of higher emotions. As these higher emotions become conscious, more frequent and more strongly experienced, they begin to direct one’s behavior and raise it to a higher level. By equating values with emotions, Dąbrowski also linked values to dynamisms as emotions are a key part of the dynamisms.
⚀ 184.108.40.206 Mental health and mental illness.
□ Dąbrowski presented somewhat unique approaches to defining mental health and illness. He said that mental health was development towards higher levels of mental functions, towards the discovery and realization of higher cognitive, moral, social, and aesthetic values and their organization into a hierarchy in accordance with one’s unique authentic personality ideal. On the other hand, mental illness was defined as the absence or deficiency of processes that lead to authentic development; either a strongly integrated, primitive/psychopathic structure, or a negative, non-developmental disintegration which may end in psychosis or suicide. In this context, the average person is not mentally healthy.
⚀ 220.127.116.11 Psychopathy/psychopath.
□ Dąbrowski often referred to individuals at level I as psychopaths, using the terms primitive and psychopathic interchangeably. This was based on the view that psychopathy represents any genetically-based blockage (e.g., lack of development potential) that prevents full authentic development. This usage was not commonly known or popular in America and created a lot of confusion.
⚀ 18.104.22.168 Psychotherapy and autopsychotherapy.
□ Dąbrowski endorsed traditional psychotherapy and pharmacological treatments of mental issues in individuals who display limited developmental potential. However, for individuals who display significant development potential, Dąbrowski advocated an approach emphasizing self therapy that he called autopsychotherapy. He encouraged individuals to use introspection to help understand their developmental potential and fundamentally unique essence. Through using autobiographical writing and techniques such as the imaginary mirrors (psychological and psychosocial), the individual can learn to manage his or her crises and development without relying upon the advice or perceptions of a therapist.
⚀ 22.214.171.124 Unilevel disintegration.
□ In describing unilevel disintegration, Dąbrowski emphasized that the alternatives perceived by the individual will be on the same level—hence the term unilevelness. Unilevel conflicts involve choices and alternatives on the same level. This type of disintegration cannot be developmental because there is no profound sense of higher versus lower choices—what Dąbrowski called multilevelness. By definition, development involves choosing higher over lower alternatives.
□ Dr. Dąbrowski used many unique terms and ideas in constructing his theory. To help his readers, he published two glossaries. This file provides the definitions of the terms published in these glossaries. Some of the definitions are slightly different in each glossary, so both versions are provided for comparison. The source of each entry is indicated. The material is used here with permission.
◘ Dąbrowski, K., with Kawczak, A., & Piechowski, M. (1970). Mental Growth Through Positive Disintegration. London: Gryf Publications. 162-180.
◘ Dąbrowski, K. (1972). Psychoneurosis is Not An Illness. London: Gryf Publications. 289-306.
⚀ ABDOMINAL REFLEX. Contraction of the muscles of the abdominal wall in response to stroking the overlying skin. (1972)
⚀ ABULIA. Loss of will; inability to decide on anything. (1972)
⚀ ACCELERATED DEVELOPMENT. Type of development characterized by multiple forms of psychic overexcitability (primarily emotional, imaginational, and intellectual), strong creative instinct, and strong autonomous factors. Accelerated development tends towards organized multilevel disintegration and secondary integration. It, thereby, tends towards transcending the psychological type and the biological life cycle. See Transcending the psychological type, Transcending the biological life cycle. (1972)
⚀ ADJUSTMENT, a state of harmony resulting from bringing oneself into agreement with other individuals, or with a pattern, principle or ideal.
◘ Social adjustment is usually thought of as the ability to live in harmony with social norms and act successfully in one’s society which practically amounts to a conformity to prevailing social standards, patterns, customs, beliefs and evaluations. So conceived social adjustment is widely considered a symptom of mental health, while social maladjustment is almost identified with mental disturbance. From the standpoint of the theory of positive disintegration this view is basically erroneous and the simple concept of adjustment is considered useless and misleading. Instead a distinction is made between positive and negative adjustment, and positive and negative maladjustment.
◘ Negative or nondevelopmental adjustment means an acceptance of and conformity, without an independent critical evaluation, to the norms, customs, mores prevailing in one’s social environment. Negative adjustment may also take the form of acceptance of one’s actual needs and inclinations without attempts to modify and transform them creatively. This kind of adjustment is incompatible with the autonomy and authenticity of the individual. It does not yield any positive developmental results either for the individual or for the society.
◘ Positive or developmental adjustment consists in correspondence with higher levels of development, that is to say, with a new hierarchy of values, consciously developed and subordinated to the personality ideal. While negative adjustment consists in undiscriminating adjustment to “what is” positive adjustment may be called adjustment to “what ought to be.” Such adjustment is a result of the operation of the developmental instinct and implies the necessity of partial maladjustment to the prevailing social patterns as well as inner conflicts and tensions characteristic of the processes of positive disintegration (cf.). Positive adjustment attains its full, mature form only at the stage of secondary integration (cf.) in which inner conflicts decrease and fundamental agreement between personality and its ideal has been attained.
◘ Positive maladjustment includes both partial adjustment to what is and increasing adjustment to higher levels of development. It consists of a conflict with, and a denial and rejection of those standards, patterns, attitudes, demands and expectations of one’s environment which are incompatible with one’s growing awareness of and loyalty to a higher scale of values. Positive maladjustment is a prerequisite to the development towards authenticity (cf.).
◘ Negative maladjustment consists of a denial and rejection of social norms, customs, and accepted patterns of behavior, but not for the sake of a higher scale of values, but rather because of one’s subordination to primitive urges and nondevelopmental, pathologically deformed structures and functions. In the extreme it takes the form of psychosis, psychopathy, and criminal activity. (1970)
⚀ AFFECTIVE PERSEVERATION. A tendency toward exploration and development of deep emotional relations and interests. It leads to few but very close relationships of love and friendship, or to a very profound dedication to one’s vocation. It occurs in individuals who are both emotional and introverted. They experience deeply and strongly, they remember their experiences vividly because of enhanced affective memory. Affective perseveration is related to the development of such attitudes as faithfulness to principles, loyalty in friendship, and constancy of interests. This quality is developmentally positive. (1972)
⚀ AMBIEQUAL TYPE. A type of personality differentiated by Rorschach which gives on the inkblot test a balance of response between internal movement and sensitivity to colors. It corresponds somewhat to the balance between introversion (emotional self-sufficiency and exclusivity, self-reference for norms and values), creativity, dependence on the external world, and sensitivity to it (need for emotional contact with environment, conformity with others, relative lack of self-reference). (1972)
⚀ AMBITENDENCIES. Contrary drives which are struggling for dominance yet never gaining it for an extended period of time. For example, greed and the accumulation of money may conflict with the desire to spend it all and have a good time, a death wish (suicidal tendency) may conflict with the drive to self-preservation. As in Ambivalences these are conflicts between drives of the same level, therefore they are unilevel, and as such are characteristic of unilevel disintegration. (1972)
⚀ AMBIVALENCES. Conflicting attitudes as of obedience and rebellion, inferiority and superiority, love and hate, etc. Ambivalences are characteristic dynamisms of unilevel disintegration. The sense of higher and lower values is absent, the conflicting feelings are of equal value, therefore, they represent one and the same level. (1972)
⚀ AMPHOTONIA. See Autonomic Disequilibrium. (1972)
⚀ ANIMISM. The belief that objects in nature, or natural phenomena, are endowed with their own consciousness, or are inhabited by souls or spirits. (1972)
⚀ ARRHYTHMIA. A change in the rhythm or force of heartbeat. Arrhythmia may be caused by organic changes or by an alteration in the control of heartbeat without physical impairment (it is, therefore, a functional disorder). (1972)
⚀ ASTHENIA. Weakness, also tendency towards depression as in psychic asthenia (= psychasthenia). (1972)
⚀ ASTHENIC. A type of body build characterized by small trunk and long limbs, also tending towards feelings of inferiority, weakness, passivity. Underestimates himself, is uncertain in his behavior and gives way. (1972)
⚀ ASTONISHMENT WITH ONESELF, the feeling that some of one’s mental qualities and dynamisms are surprising and unexpected. It has a distinct intellectual component and is one of the earliest developmental dynamisms active at the time of transition from unilevel to multilevel disintegration. It is usually accompanied by the feeling of disquietude (cf.) and discontent (cf.) with oneself. (1970)
⚀ ASTONISHMENT WITH ONESELF. The feeling that some of one’s mental qualities are surprising and unexpected. It is one of the earliest developmental dynamisms, and is mainly cognitive in nature, though not exclusively. It is active at the time of transition from unilevel to multilevel disintegration, usually accompanied by disquietude and dissatisfaction with oneself. (1972)
⚀ AUTHENTICITY, AUTHENTISM. As a developmental force it is called here authentism, a dynamism which consists in the feeling, awareness and expression of one’s own emotional, intellectual and volitional attitudes, achieved through autonomous developmental transformations of one’s own hierarchy of values and aims. It involves a high degree of insight into oneself. Authenticity is a symptom of independence from lower instinctive levels and selective independence from influences of the external environment and the inner psychic milieu. It brings about a high degree of unity of one’s thinking, emotions and activity. Authentism involves conscious activity in accordance with one’s “inner truth.” The appearance and growth of authentism results from the operation of such dynamisms as dissatisfaction with oneself, (cf.), autonomy, (cf.) the third factor, (cf.) positive maladjustment, (cf.) ‘subject-object' in oneself (cf.) inner psychic transformation and the personality ideal. (1970)
⚀ AUTHENTICITY, AUTHENTISM. Authenticity denotes a high degree of unity of one’s thinking, emotions, and activity. Authentism involves conscious activity in accordance with one’s “inner truth,” i.e. one’s autonomously developed hierarchy of values; it is a developmental force. (1972)
⚀ AUTISM, or AUTISTIC THINKING. Mental activity serving to gratify the thinker without respect to actual reality. Portrayed by Thurber in “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.” (1972)
⚀ AUTOMATIC DYNAMISMS. Mental processes stemming from constitutional typological factors lacking conscious inner transformation, e.g. the “spontaneity” of action painting or “happenings.” (1972)
⚀ AUTONOMIC DISEQUILIBRIUM. Amphotonia, Dystonia, or Vagosympathetic Dystonia. Lack of balance between the activity of the sympathetic and the parasympathetic nervous systems, characterized by quick switches of dominance from one system to the other (see Autonomic Lability). Autonomic disequilibrium is characteristic of the lower neuroses. (1972)
⚀ AUTONOMIC DISORGANIZATION. The most evolved stage of Autonomic Disequilibrium (q.v.). It is expressed in the alternating strength of activity of the two autonomic systems: the sympathetic and the para-sympathetic. It is observed as a prevalence of activity of the sympathetic nervous system in one field (e.g. digestive, or circulatory) and at the same time a prevalence of activity of the parasympathetic system in another field (e.g. genito-urinary, or respiratory). (1972)
⚀ AUTONOMIC LABILITY. A tendency to sudden transfer of tension between the sympathetic and the parasympathetic nervous systems. These reactions have disturbing consequences, as for instance, sudden drop of blood pressure and fainting spells, or the reverse when a sudden rise in blood pressure is spontaneously compensated by bleeding from the nose or mouth. (1972)
⚀ AUTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM. A system of neurons controlling the involuntary activity of the viscera: digestive organs, heart, lungs, kidneys, glands, etc. It has two parts, the sympathetic and the parasympathetic. The stimulation of the sympathetic system mobilizes the organism by quickening respiration, heart rate, raising the blood pressure, etc. The action of the parasympathetic system is for the most part functionally reciprocal. The excitation of one system results in the inhibition of the functions controlled by the other, for instance, the increase of respiration and heart rate suspends digestion. (1972)
⚀ AUTONOMIC SOMATIZATION. The transformation of acute psychological tension into nervous somatic symptoms under the control of the autonomic nervous system. For instance, an increase in the pulse rate, blushing, or growing pale, growing tense, hysterical paralysis, etc., occur as a result of a severe emotional experience. The symptoms and syndromes may grow from very weak to very strong. It is believed that in autonomic somatization the disturbance is due more to the lability of the autonomic nervous system rather than to the intensity of psychological processes. Cf. Psychosomatization. (1972)
⚀ AUTONOMY, consciously developed independence from lower level drives and from some influences of the external environment. Autonomy is possible only as a result of the operation of other dynamisms of the inner psychic milieu (cf.), mainly the third factor (cf.). (1970)
⚀ AUTONOMY. A dynamism of inner freedom. It signifies a consciously developed independence from lower drives and from the influences of the external environment. (1972)
⚀ AUTOPSYCHOTHERAPY. Psychotherapy, preventive measures, or changes in living conditions consciously applied to oneself in order to control possible mental disequilibrium. (1972)
⚀ BABINSKI REFLEX. Spreading of toes when the sole of the foot is scratched. A sign of pathology in the nervous system. (1972)
⚀ CATATONIC SCHIZOPHRENIA, or CATATONIA. Type of schizophrenia characterized by slowness of movements, or prolonged immobility, sometimes by muscular rigidity and inflexibility. (1972)
⚀ CHWOSTEK REFLEX. Local contraction of facial muscles in response to being struck by a mallet or to other stimulus. (1972)
⚀ COENESTESY, conversion of mental processes into processes of the sympathetic nervous system and vice versa, usually associated with somatic dystonia. Coenestesy is frequently observable at the stage of unilevel disintegration and may represent the introductory phase toward a control of the sympathetic system by the growing personality. In this case we call it positive coenestesy.
◘ Coenestesy occurs often among individuals having a better than average ability for development. They usually show great plasticity and sensitivity, easily producing neurotic reactions which are, however, quickly controlled and disappear. (1970)
⚀ COENESTHESIA. The totality of internal sensations by which one perceives one’s own body. Coenesthesia is increased when emotional processes are converted into the processes controlled by the autonomic nervous system, and vice versa, and are experienced as numbness, formication, or internal oppression. Disturbances of coenesthesia take the form of vertigo, palpitation, nausea, etc. Marked coenesthesia is frequent at the stage of unilevel disintegration and may represent an initial phase toward control of the autonomic nervous system by the growing personality. (1972)
⚀ CONFABULATION. More or less unconscious creation of imaginary experiences, often in great detail, to cover up memory gaps or other lacks of own material. (1972)
⚀ CONTACT INTROVERSION. Introversion combined with conscious need for external contact. It results from the transformation of rigid introversion into a mixed introvertive-extrovertive type. It is an example of the transformation of a one-sided psychological type to a richer one less delimited by constitutional factors. Thus it represents an expression of the developmental potential. Contact introversion is connected with the dynamism and process “subject-object in oneself.” (1972)
⚀ CONVERSION. A mental mechanism by means of which an emotional reaction is expressed in an alteration of a function of the body, e.g. paralysis of a limb as an escape from a threatening or painful situation, or as an extreme affective identification with a paralyzed beloved person. Conversion reaction is characteristic of hysteria. (1972)
⚀ CREATIVE DYNAMISMS. Different abilities and talents finding their expression in a search for “otherness,” for nonstereotype facets of reality. All developmental dynamisms are creative by their power of transforming the individual and his perception of reality. (1972)
⚀ CREATIVE INSTINCT, a dynamism which consists of the search for new and qualitatively different experiences. It appears and grows at a relatively high level of development. Arising from the negative experience of excessive saturation with actual conditions, it is associated with the dynamisms of dissatisfaction with oneself, and the environment, the third factor, the desire to transform oneself, prospection and authenticity. It is not necessarily associated with a global development of mental functions and structures. It appears in the first phase of multilevel disintegration. (1970)
⚀ CREATIVE INSTINCT. An assembly of cohesively organized forces, often of great intensity, oriented toward a search for the new and the different in the external and the internal reality. Creative instinct is associated with accelerated development. (1972)
⚀ CUTANEOUS REFLEX. Wrinkling of the skin or gooseflesh upon mechanical stimulation of the skin. (1972)
⚀ CYCLOID. Refers to a person who shows relatively marked but normal swings of mood between excitement and depression, less strong than in the cyclothymic (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ CYCLOTHYMIC. Exhibiting alternating moods of elation and depression, activity and inactivity, with mood swings out of proportion to apparent stimuli. A mild form of manic-depressive behavior. (1972)
⚀ DEFENSE THROUGH DEVELOPMENT. With the progress of development the defensive (i.e. protective) forces localize themselves at a high level toward the service of individual growth. Mental development is the best protection against mental disorder. It is the lack of mental growth, or its stalemate, that favors mental illness. (1972)
⚀ DELUSIONAL CENTER. A disposing and directing center identified with a delusion (of persecution, jealousy, etc.) which controls behavior. (1972)
⚀ DERMOGRAPHIA. Sensitivity of the skin to local mechanical irritation. When pressed or scratched the skin produces a reddish, or sometimes white, raised mark which may stay for a short while or a long time, in which case we have a prolonged and more intense dermographic response. (1972)
⚀ DEVELOPMENTAL INSTINCT, instinct of a most general and basic nature, a “mother instinct” in relation to all other instincts; the source (in nucleus) of all developmental forces of an individual. It finds its expression particularly in such dynamisms as dissatisfaction with oneself, feelings of inferiority towards oneself, the third factor, inner psychic transformation, disposing and directing center at a higher level, autonomy and authentism, personality ideal. It acts differently at different stages of development, pushing the individual towards higher and higher developmental levels. It operates with variable intensity in most human individuals; among those with the ability for accelerated development it takes the form of education-of-oneself and autopsychotherapy. Some individuals, e.g oligophrenics, imbeciles, idiots, do not have the developmental instinct. (1970)
⚀ DEVELOPMENTAL INSTINCT. The source of all mental developmental forces of the individual. It is absent in mental retardation and psychopathy. (1972)
⚀ DEVELOPMENTAL POTENTIAL. The constitutional endowment which determines the character and the extent of mental growth possible for a given individual. The developmental potential can be assessed on the basis of the following components: psychic overexcitability (q.v.), special abilities and talents, and autonomous factors (notably the Third factor). (1972)
⚀ DISINTEGRATION, mental, consists of loosening, disorganization or dissolution of mental structures and functions. The term covers a wide range of states from temporary loosening of contact with reality observable in severe fatigue, boredom, depression, stress, mental conflicts, disequilibrium, neurosis or psychoneurosis to a split of personality in schizophrenia. “Normal” symptoms of disintegration are distinctly and almost universally observable at the time of puberty and menopause, also at times of critical experiences, suffering, inner conflicts, intense joy or exaltation, etc.
◘ Disintegration is unilevel (or horizontal), if there are protracted and recurrent conflicts between drives and emotional states of a similar developmental level and of the same intensity, e.g. states of ambivalence and ambitendency, propulsion toward and repulsion from the same object, rapidly changing states of joy and sadness, excitement and depression without the tendency towards stabilization within a hierarchy. It is characteristic of unilevel disintegration that conflicts are accompanied by a lack or by a minimal degree of consciousness and self-consciousness, self-control and ability to transform stimuli.
◘ Disintegration is multilevel (or vertical), if there are conflicts between higher and lower levels of instinctive, emotional or intellectual functions, e.g. higher and lower forms of the sexual instinct, or the instinct of self-preservation, etc. It consists mainly in differentiation and hierarchization of various levels of functions with a tendency towards gradual stabilization of a new hierarchy. In the course of positive multilevel disintegration primitive, animalistic drives and structures are subject to a disintegration, that is weakening, loosening and even total destruction under the impact of developmental dynamisms (cf.) and gradually give way to new, higher levels and new, higher structures. There is a growth of consciousness of inner conflicts, self-consciousness and self-control. The processes of inner psychic transformation gain in intensity and authenticity (cf.). There is a gradual build-up of the inner psychic milieu (cf.) with its main dynamisms such as “subject-object" in oneself, the third factor, inner psychic transformation, autonomy and authentism, and the personality ideal.
◘ Multilevel disintegration includes two phases. The first is spontaneous, as it is characterized by a relative predominance of spontaneous developmental forces and the second is organized (self-directed), as it is in the period of conscious organization and direction of the processes of disintegration towards secondary integration and personality. Negative or involutional disintegration is characterized by the presence and operation of dissolving dynamisms and by the lack of developmental dynamisms. It occurs almost solely at the stage of unilevel disintegration and may end in dissolution of mental structures (chronic mental illness).
◘ Positive or developmental disintegration effects a weakening and dissolution of lower level structures and functions, gradual generation and growth of higher levels of mental functions and culminates in personality integration. Its characteristics are the presence and operation of developmental dynamisms (cf.), many of which involve psychoneurotic states (cf.) psychoneurosis) with all their protective (defensive) and creative forces.
◘ The process of positive disintegration starts from primitive integration and develops through the following four stages: (1) unilevel disintegration, if it shows some nuclei of self-consciousness, (2) spontaneous multilevel disintegrations, (3) organized multilevel disintegration, (4) transition from multilevel disintegration to secondary integration. It culminates in global secondary integration at a new, higher level.
◘ Global disintegration involves all main mental functions. It comes about either as a result of fundamental transformations in the full cycle of the process of positive disintegration or as a result of many partial disintegrations, or as an outcome of the collaboration of both above processes. It transforms the whole mental structure and thus paves the way for a new global integration at the level of personality (cf.).
◘ Partial multilevel disintegration occurs within one or a few interconnected dynamisms. Its outcome is either a return to a lower primitive integration, or a transformation into a global disintegration, or, in case of multilevel partial disintegration, a partial integration at a higher level. Partial multilevel disintegration is a result of limited hereditary endowment and psychic experiences limited to a narrow sphere. These cause a loosening or disintegration of narrow, primitive structures. The partial secondary integration at a higher level, which usually follows, is a result of inner psychic transformation (cf.) within a limited area. An accumulation of a great number of partial integrations at a higher level may culminate in a global disintegration and later formation of personality. Partial disintegrations culminating in partial integrations at higher levels are the usual endpoint of mental development of people with average sensitivity and average endowment. (1970)
⚀ DISINTEGRATION. Loosening, disorganization, or dissolution of mental structures and functions. See Unilevel Disintegration, Multilevel Disintegration, Negative Disintegration, and Positive Disintegration. (1972)
⚀ DISPOSING AND DIRECTING CENTER is the dynamism which determines each act of an individual as well as his long range behavior, plans and aspiration. It performs the following: programming, planning, organizing, collaborating, general and concrete deciding. At a lower level its role is fulfilled by various primitive drives (e.g. sexual, self-preservation, etc.) which temporarily or permanently direct and control an individual’s life and conscious activities. Only at a higher stage, particularly during multilevel disintegration, the disposing and directing center appears and develops as an independent dynamism, not identical with any one or any combination of other dynamisms. At the level of primitive integration the role of the disposing and directing center is taken by primitive drives which dominate and subordinate other functions. At the stage of unilevel disintegration and during the earlier period of multilevel disintegration this role is played alternatively by different dynamisms, often of a contrary nature. At higher phases of multilevel disintegration the disposing and directing center starts operating as a dynamism not identical with any other function, although collaborating closely with the highest dynamisms of the inner psychic milieu, such as the third factor, inner psychic transformation, autonomy, authentism, and the ideal of personality. At secondary integration it is incorporated into the personality which exercises synthetic activity and superior control over all human actions. (1970)
⚀ DISPOSING AND DIRECTING CENTER. A center which controls behavior over a short or long period of time. At a low level of human development this center is identical with either one or a group of primitive drives (e.g. self-preservation, sexual, aggressive, etc.). At higher levels of development this center becomes an independent dynamism working towards harmonious unification of personality. (1972)
⚀ DISQUIETUDE WITH ONESELF, uneasiness with oneself, one of the earliest developmental dynamisms, active especially at the time of transition from unilevel to multilevel disintegration, frequently taking the form of astonishment with oneself (cf.) or dissatisfaction with oneself (cf.). It consists of astonishment combined with a strong emotional component and evaluative attitude of a medium intensity. Unlike disquietude about oneself it is not generated by the self-preservation instinct, but rather by the cognitive and developmental instincts. (1970)
⚀ DISQUIETUDE WITH ONESELF. The feeling of uneasiness with oneself; one of the earliest dynamisms marking the beginning of multilevel disintegration. (1972)
⚀ DISSATISFACTION, WITH ONESELF, is an early form of the dynamisms of valuation. It contains a strong emotional component expressed in disapproval of some of the elements of one’s own mental structure. (1970)
⚀ DISSATISFACTION WITH ONESELF or Discontent with oneself. An early form of the dynamism of valuation (the third factor). A potent motivator of conscious development. (1972)
⚀ DRIVE, concrete instinctive need of a great intensity demanding satisfaction. (1970)
⚀ DRIVE. A concrete instinctive need of great intensity demanding satisfaction. (1972)
⚀ DYNAMIC INSIGHT, or “Prise de conscience.” Strong global momentary states of self-awareness. They tend to generate dynamic understanding of one’s behavior with the consequences of changing it. (1972)
⚀ DYNAMISM, biological or mental forces of a variety of kinds, scopes, levels of development and intensity, decisive with regard to the behavior, activity, development or involution of man. Instincts, drives and intellectual processes conjoined with emotions constitute specific kinds of dynamisms. (1970)
⚀ DYNAMISM. Biological or mental force controlling behavior and its development. Instincts, drives, and intellectual processes combined with emotions are dynamisms. (1972)
⚀ DYSTONIA. See Autonomic Disequilibrium. (1972)
⚀ ECSTASY. Extreme absorption of attention resulting in a semi-trance as a consequence of intense contemplation of a limited field; a state characteristic of mystical experiences. (1972)
⚀ EKKLISIS. A term introduced by von Monakow to describe one of the two biopsychic vectors of behavioral patterns of living beings: approach and avoidance, attraction and repulsion, syntony and dislike, flight and aggression. Ekklisis is the id for the outward movement, Klisis is the id for the approach movement. (1972)
⚀ EMOTIONAL IMMATURITY, positive, is to be distinguished from its negative form i.e. emotional or affective retardation (cf.).
◘ It does not adapt to the biopsychic developmental phases and transcends the biological cycle of life. Positive emotional immaturity consists in the endurance and persistence of a variety of emotional and in part intellectual qualities and functions which are characteristic of childhood and youth. Qualities such as sincerity, outrightness, straight forwardness, syntony, enthusiasm, lack of mental rigidity and stereotypy, magical and animistic thinking, elements specific in creative thinking become a source of plasticity, creative development and ability to transform one’s psychological type. Frequently this kind of “immaturity” is associated with tendencies towards positive regression. (cf.). (1970)
⚀ EMOTIONAL IMMATURITY. The persistence of emotional and intellectual qualities characteristic of children and youth past a young age. Associated with tendencies to Positive Regression (q.v.) it is an essential component of creative development. (1972)
⚀ EMOTIONAL RETARDATION, or affective retardation, a negative form of emotional immaturity, is a result of arrested development of the emotional sphere and is characterized by the primitiveness and rigidity of emotions, lack of higher subtle emotions, a very low level of syntony and emotional sensitivity. It occurs in psychopathy, some forms of intellectual retardation and in some forms of mental infantilism. (1970)
⚀ EMOTIONAL RETARDATION. A negative form of Emotional Immaturity; lack of emotional development characterized by primitiveness and rigidity of affect, very low level of syntony and emotional sensitivity. Associated with psychopathy and some forms of mental retardation. (1972)
⚀ EMPATHY, cf. syntony. (1970)
⚀ EMPATHY. High level of Syntony (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ ERYTHEMA PUDICUM. The tendency to blush because of feelings of shame, timidity, or inhibition. An indicator of emotional overexcitability. It is often due to periodic heightened sensitivity to the opinions and judgments expressed by others. It is combined with somatopsychic sensitivity. (1972)
⚀ EVOLUTION. A development which proceeds from lower to higher levels of organization. Positive disintegration is the type of process through which individual human evolution occurs. See Involution. (1972)
⚀ EXISTENTIAL ANXIETY. Anxiety states on a very high level of development involving the awareness of the fact of one’s existence and the responsibility that follows from it. Fear for others prevails over fear for oneself. Existential anxiety arises on the basis of psychic overexcitability (q.v.) of alterocentric nature. It embraces empathic and intellectual components on a very wide range with the emphasis on the human dilemma of existential choice. It is also related to the awareness of the universality of human experience as expressed by St. Paul: “If anyone is weak, do I not share this weakness? If anyone is made to stumble, does not my heart blaze with indignation?” (II Cor. 11, 29). (1972)
⚀ EXISTENTIAL HYSTERIA. A psychoneurosis at a high level of development arising on a background of existential experiences and actions prompted by empathy (alterocentric preoccupations). With hysteria it has the following similarities, though expressed at a higher level: intense affects, strong dramatization, attitude of gesture, demonstrativeness, tendency toward ecstasy or contemplation. (1972)
⚀ EXISTENTIAL PSYCHONEUROSIS. Psychoneurosis on a high level of development which involves a dominance of existential preoccupations. These existential components are peculiar to each kind of psychoneurosis—depressive, anxiety, infantile, obsessive, etc. (1972)
⚀ EXTERIORIZATION, an overt manifestation of a mental process. Cf. interiorization, inner psychic transformation. (1970)
⚀ EXTRAVERT. A type of personality exhibiting strong interest in external reality, inclined to rely in his judgments and experiences on the opinions of his environment; inclined to syntony and adaptation to others, does not tolerate solitude. (1972)
⚀ FLEXIBILITAS CEREA. See Waxy Flexibility. (1972)
⚀ FUNCTIONS, mental, general term to denote mental processes dealing with definite aspects of life. (Cf. levels of functions). (1970)
⚀ FUNCTIONS. The instruments of mental and emotional equipment, e.g. reality function, empathy, identification, responsibility, intuition. See Levels of Functions. (1972)
⚀ GLOBAL, disintegration, cf. disintegration. (1970)
⚀ GUILT, feeling of, arises from the feeling of dissatisfaction with oneself (cf.) and represents its intensified form, usually associated with a strong need for expiation. The feeling of guilt always has alterocentric components and originates from the hereditary endowment. Its presence indicates increased intensity of the process of multilevel disintegration. It is usually accompanied by the feelings of shame (cf.), inferiority towards oneself (cf.) and responsibility for one’s actions (cf.). (1970)
⚀ HEBEPHRENIC SCHIZOPHRENIA, or Hebephrenia. Type of schizophrenia characterized by shallow inappropriate affects, unpredictable behavior, silly mannerisms. (1972)
⚀ HIERARCHIZATION. The process of developing or activating different emotional levels. It stems from conflicts of value which reflect the existence of feelings corresponding to higher and lower values (i.e. more preferred vs. less preferred choices). A hierarchy of values is a hierarchy of higher and lower levels of emotions. (1972)
⚀ HYPERKINESIS. Excessive restlessness of movements. (1972)
⚀ HYPERTONIA, OR Autonomic Hypertonia. High tension of the Autonomic nervous system (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ HYPOBULIA. Lowered ability to act or to make decisions. Less severe than Abulia. (1972)
⚀ HYPOMANIC. Refers to mild manic conditions, characterized by restlessness, flight of ideas, distraction. (1972)
⚀ HYPOTONIA, or Autonomic Hypotonia. Low tension of the Autonomic nervous system (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ IDENTIFICATION, consists of understanding and experiencing of mental states, attitudes, aspirations and activity of other people or of oneself. The capacity for identification is obtainable only at a high level of universal mental development through the process of positive disintegration. Self-conscious and authentic identification is possible only on the foundation of a rich inner psychic milieu. It is preceded by and associated with such dynamisms as “subject-object” in oneself, the third factor and inner psychic transformation.
◘ There is a close association between identification and empathy. Although identification is not mainly intellectual, it has a more distinct intellectual component than empathy.
◘ Identification with others expresses the attitude of “klisis” (attraction) independently of the developmental level of the people towards whom this attitude is directed. Identification with oneself expresses the attitude of “klisis” in relation to one’s higher levels and “ekklisis” (repulsion) in relation to lower levels.
◘ Identification in this conception has a clear positive, developmental and highly conscious nature. It does not involve in any way the process of obliteration or absorption of the other person into oneself or vice versa. It should be clearly distinguished from unconscious or half-conscious identifications which are conspicuous in dancing, singing, sport or fighting. Those forms of identifications are for the most part dependent on biological temperamental factors and do not represent any developmental value. (1970)
⚀ INFANTILISM, a conjunction of infantile mental qualities, especially emotional, moral, social and intellectual of different levels and in various configurations. It may fulfill a generally positive or negative function. In the first case it is associated mainly with versatile abilities, plasticity and emotional sincerity, characteristic of childhood; in the second case it is associated with general lack of ability for development and tendency towards rigidity, sometimes with mental retardation. It is frequently combined with hormonal disturbances. (1970)
⚀ INFANTILISM. A
combination of infantile mental qualities. In its positive form it is
associated with plasticity and emotional sincerity characteristic of children.
In its negative form it is associated with general lack of developmental
potential as in mental retardation. (1972)
⚀ INFERIORITY TOWARD ONESELF, feeling of, consists of the experience of and awareness of the disparity between the level at which one is and the higher level toward which one strives, between what one is and what one ought to be. It comes about as a result of experiences associated with “climbing up” to a higher level and “slipping back.” It is an outcome of the shock caused by the realization of one’s unfaithfulness to the ideal of personality, to the hierarchy of values which begins to take shape, or already has taken shape, but lacks stability. It is associated with an intensive need to establish a definite hierarchy of values and aims and to transform oneself accordingly. It usually operates in conjunction with the dynamisms “subject-object” in oneself, dissatisfaction with oneself and, at higher levels, with the personality ideal. (1970)
⚀ INFERIORITY TOWARD ONESELF. The feeling consisting in the experiencing and awareness of the disparity between the level at which one is and the higher one toward which one strives. It is the shock of realization of one’s unfaithfulness to the ideal of personality, to the hierarchy of values which begins to take shape but as yet lacks stability, followed by a desire and actions to transform oneself. (1972)
⚀ INHIBITION. Means of control of physiological or mental processes at any level of activity by reducing or stopping the flow of a given process. (1972)
⚀ INNER PSYCHIC MILIEU (internal mental environment), that part of the psyche where man enters into conflict with himself, the totality of mental dynamisms of a low or high degree of consciousness operating in a more or less hierarchical organization. These dynamisms are basically in a relation of cooperation which, however, does not exclude developmental conflicts. They perform the main task of positive disintegration at the stage of multilevel disintegration by participation in the transformation of mental functions and structures in the direction of higher levels up to the level of fully developed personality.
◘ All the dynamisms of the inner psychic milieu, largely speaking, may be divided into unilevel and multilevel. Ambivalences and ambitendencies are unilevel dynamisms, all other are multilevel (see Chapter IV).
◘ It may be assumed that nuclei of the inner psychic milieu exist in primitive stages of mental development, particularly at unilevel disintegration. At this stage, however, there is no distinct psychic transformation. Basic primitive drives are active at this stage, with variable intensity and localization in relation to other drives depending on the psychophysiological stage of the individual. Slight somatic and coenestetic disturbances cause various forms of mental disequilibrium and consequently of primitive psychosomatic conversion. In this way nuclei of the inner psychic milieu arise. The inner psychic milieu in a strict sense (i.e. as a hierarchical structure) arises only at later stages, when the abilities for self-observation and self-control are sufficiently developed. (1970)
⚀ INNER PSYCHIC MILIEU, or internal mental environment. The totality of mental dynamisms of a low or high degree of consciousness. The inner psychic milieu may be hierarchical, as in multilevel disintegration, or ahierarchical, as in unilevel disintegration. The inner psychic milieu as a ground for positive development must be hierarchical, and it is this type which is normally understood under the term. (1972)
⚀ INNER PSYCHIC TRANSFORMATION, a dynamism which carries out the work of developmental change in man’s mental structure. The characteristic aspects of the operation of inner psychic transformation are: (1) transformation of the innate psychological type by introduction of traits of the opposite type (e.g. introduction of traits of introversion into an extrovert mental structure); (2) transformation of somatic determination (biological sequence of the life cycle, aging, disease, etc.) into mental determination (accumulation of mental powers that result in consistent domination and control of somatic determinants).
◘ Stimuli received by the psyche are subject to inner psychic transformation. The stimuli can be external or internal (i.e. originating in the inner psychic milieu). Because of the intervening process of transformation response is not always directly related to the original stimulus. In the extreme, though not infrequent, case, there might be no external response. Similarly, an external response may be generated without an immediate external stimulus. When the stimuli and responses arise entirely within the inner psychic milieu, we have the process of inner psychic transformation of the milieu itself. As a basic dynamism operating on all levels of the inner milieu inner psychic transformation cooperates with all dynamisms of that milieu. (1970)
⚀ INNER PSYCHIC TRANSFORMATION. The process by which the work of developmental change in man’s mental structure is carried out. It makes possible the transcending of the psychological type and of the biological life cycle (see Transcending). (1972)
⚀ INSTINCT, a fundamental dynamism (force) in the lives of animals and men which has a great intensity, a significant degree of compactness and cohesiveness, its own sphere of activity, and its own direction.
◘ It is common to some animal species and man or peculiar to man only, undergoing a transformation in phylogenetic and ontogenetic development, appearing characteristically at certain phases and levels of development.
◘ This concept differs in several respects from the general use of the term instinct. The main new elements are: (1) Instincts undergo transformations in ontogenetic development. (2) Some instinctive forces occur only among some people, especially among those who have attained a high level of psychic development. (3) The qualification of the forces mentioned in point (2) as instincts is due to their origin from a more fundamental developmental instinct and to the fact that they show strength and compactness, comparable to primitive instinctive drives, and sometimes even greater. (4) Their development and transformation depend not only on the element of intelligence and knowledge conjoined with them, but also on their inter and intrainstinctive conflicts and cooperation.
◘ The typical ontogenetic development of instincts passes through the following stages and levels: (1) A simple, automatic, cohesive structure, with a completely subordinated intellectual function and identified with the will. (2) A loosening of the structure, spasticity, vacillation, conflicts between different instincts of the same general level. (3) Inter and intrainstinctive disintegration, formation of new, higher instincts (e.g. creative into self-perfection). (4) Gradual refinement of higher levels of instincts and elimination of lower ones. (5) High level instincts become an integral part of the disposing and directing center, and thus they become constitutive elements of personality. (1970)
⚀ INTEGRATION, mental, consists in an incorporation of various functions into a coordinated structure showing a dynamic equilibrium which counteracts neurotic responses.
◘ From the standpoint of the theory of positive disintegration it is necessary to distinguish various kinds of integrations at lower and higher levels and conceive of disintegration (cf.) as a basic process of transition from a lower level integration to a higher one. Consequently disintegrative processes are considered as developmental, that is positive and basically healthy, while rigid lower level integrations indicate the opposite of mental health (cf.), (cf. negative integration, primitive integration, secondary integration). (1970)
⚀ INTEGRATION. Consists in an organization of instinctive, emotional and intellectual functions into a coordinated structure. See Primitive Integration and Secondary Integration. (1972)
⚀ INTERIORIZATION AND EXTERIORIZATION (cf.), dynamisms which are necessary for the process of inner psychic transformation (cf.). Interiorization consists in a conscious and selective introjection of external and internal stimuli in order to submit them to inner psychic transformation before any response is emitted. If the process of inner psychic transformation has taken place, exteriorization takes a form which expresses more the psychological type of the individual than the nature of the stimulus. (1970)
⚀ INTERNEUROTIC LEVELS. Psychoneurotic syndromes characteristic of different levels of development. For example, phobias, organ neuroses and hypochondria are limited to Level II (unilevel disintegration), while paranoid and catatonic schizophrenias can occur at Level II and III and thus are disorders of higher level representing greater complexity and greater possibility of growth. Psychoneurotic anxiety and depression are still higher because they do not occur below Level III (see Table II, p. 110). Correct and precise diagnosis of a syndrome helps to identify the developmental level of a patient. (1972)
⚀ INTRANEUROTIC LEVELS. Levels of functions differentiated within the same psychoneurotic syndrome. Lower levels are characterized by predominant somatic control while higher levels by predominant mental control. For example within the category of psychasthenias neurasthenia represents a higher level than hypochondria, but lower level than psychasthenia, all three involving the same group of functions (see Table III, p. 113). (1972)
⚀ INTROVERT. A type of personality having difficult contact with his environment, inclined to base his behavior on his own judgment, imagination and experience; inclined to solitude, avoids other especially at times of grave difficulties. (1972)
⚀ INVOLUTION. Negative development. Opposite of evolution (q.v.). Development which proceeds from higher to a lower level of organization. It tends toward severe disorders (psychosis, psychopathy, mental retardation), and may lead to the dissolution of mental organization. (1972)
⚀ KINAESTHESIS. The sense of movement derived from receptors in skeletal muscles, joints, etc. In the Rorschach - a movement response. (1972)
⚀ KLISIS. A term introduced by von Monakow to describe the approach tendency as one of the two main behavioral vectors. See Ekklisis. (1972)
⚀ LABILITY, see Autonomic Lability. (1972)
⚀ LEVEL I. Primitive integration (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ LEVEL II. Unilevel disintegration (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ LEVEL III. Spontaneous multilevel disintegration (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ LEVEL IV. Organized multilevel disintegration (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ LEVEL V. Secondary integration (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ LEVELS OF FUNCTIONS, denote quantitative and qualitative changes which occur in different mental functions in the course of development. Generally, lower levels of functions are characterized by automatism, impulsiveness, stereotypy, lack or low degree of consciousness, lack of inner psychic transformation. Higher levels show distinct consciousness, inner psychic transformation, intellectual components operating in conjunction with higher emotions, and essentially involve creative, autonomous factors (cf. the Syllabus of Transitions from Lower to Higher Functions, Chapter V). Presently available tests distinguish and measure only the levels of intellectual and psychomotor functions. The theory of positive disintegration provides the principles for similar scales to be developed for other functions (53). In particular one could develop a scale for degree of emotional development. The distinction between higher and lower levels of functions is fundamental for the conception of mental development. (1970)
⚀ LEVELS OF FUNCTIONS. The qualitative and quantitative differences which appear in mental functions as a result of developmental changes. Lower levels of functions are characterized by automatism, impulsiveness, stereotypy, egocentrism, lack or low degree of consciousness. Higher levels of functions show distinct consciousness, inner psychic transformation, autonomousness, creativity. (1972)
⚀ MAGICAL THINKING. An emotional, imaginational, and intuitive type of thinking based on the assumption (most often unconscious) that some phenomena may operate exempt from the causality of the laws of nature. Magical thinking explains different phenomena in a miraculous or fantastic way. (1972)
⚀ MALADJUSTMENT, cf. adjustment. (1970)
⚀ MEDITATION. Practice of mental concentration leading to inner calmness and sense of well-being. (1972)
⚀ MEDITATIVE EMPATHY. An expression of sympathy towards another person but with strong reflective, and even meditative, components. It is a high level of syntony of closely integrated intellectual elements. The intellectual elements do not diminish such empathy but rather enrich and develop it: “I know you and I always refine this knowledge; yet this does not diminish my feeling for you but differentiates it.” (1972)
⚀ MENTAL DEVELOPMENT, autonomous, is the passing from lower level structures and functions to higher levels (cf. levels of functions). It is a result of the process of positive disintegration (cf.). In its beginning stages mental development is biologically determined, automatic, unconscious or with a low degree of consciousness, confined within the biological cycle of life and consequently exposed to deterioration with age. In higher stages of development the inner psychic milieu with its main dynamisms (cf.) plays an increasingly important role. From the stage of organized multilevel disintegration the highly conscious dynamisms of inner psychic transformation, the third factor, autonomy, and personality ideal determine the direction of development. Conscious and deliberate choice based on many-sided and multilevel insights and understanding replaces unconscious biological drives. Autonomous development transcends the biological cycle of life in a twofold sense: (1) It ceases to be dependent on organic changes such as those characteristic of the periods of puberty, adolescence, menopause, senility, etc. (2) Development remains progressive into old age despite somatic deterioration due to biological changes.
◘ At higher stages particularly at secondary integration, a regression to lower levels is no longer possible. Lower level drives, once disintegrated and destroyed, cannot re-emerge, while consciously and authentically elaborated higher levels of functions, once integrated into personality, cannot be prevented from operating. The direction of development in its higher stages is derived from the growing insight into and understanding of oneself and the surrounding environment and by the growth of higher emotions, particularly empathy. It is determined by the following guidelines: (1) Openness to new kinds of experiences, increasing sensitivity and growth of both the general potential and specific abilities, the increasing role of conscious and deliberate activities over unconscious and automatic ones, constantly growing control over oneself and the environment. (2) The appearance of a new source of enjoyment resulting from consciously accepted and deliberately developed activities, inspired by a new hierarchy of values (creative work, personal satisfaction from the fulfillment of one’s program). The higher the level of development, the grater is the proportion of this type of satisfaction as compared to pleasures derived from appeasing impulsive desires (sensual pleasures, etc.) which are the only accessible kind of pleasures at lower developmental stages. (3) Growing ability for further development.
◘ This conception of mental development differs from traditional approaches in the following aspects: (a) It brings out the positive developmental function of the processes of disintegration. (b) It assigns a crucial role to the inner psychic milieu with its main dynamisms of inner psychic transformation, the third factor, autonomy and authentism, disposing and directing center and the personality ideal, that is concepts and processes hitherto left out of consideration. (c) It replace, at a certain level, biological determinants by psychological, conscious and autonomous determinants. (d) It assumes an empirical hierarchy of levels of functions (cf.) and consequently growing objectivity of valuation in morals, aesthetics, etc. proportionate to the stage of mental development. (1970)
⚀ MENTAL HEALTH consists in the functioning of processes which effect development towards higher levels of mental function, towards recognition and realization of higher intellectual, moral, social and aesthetic values and their organization into a hierarchy in accordance with one’s own authentic ideal of personality. (1970)
⚀ MENTAL HEALTH. Development towards higher levels of mental functions, towards the discovery and realization of higher cognitive, moral, social, and aesthetic values and their organization into a hierarchy in accordance with one’s own authentic personality ideal. (1972)
⚀ MENTAL ILLNESS consists in the absence or deficiency of processes which effect development, it takes the form of (1) either a strongly integrated, primitive, psychopathic structure, or (2) a negative, non-developmental disintegration (cf.) which may end in dissolution of mental structures and functions (psychosis). (1970)
⚀ MENTAL ILLNESS. The absence or deficiency of processes which effect the development of emotional and instinctive functions. It takes the form of either (1) a strongly integrated, primitive, psychopathic structure, or (2) a negative, nondevelopmental disintegration which may end in dissolution of mental structures and functions. (1972)
⚀ MIGRATORY NEUROSIS. An organ neurosis with a tendency to periodical quick migration from affecting the function of one organ to affecting another, or from one system of organs to another. (1972)
⚀ MULTILEVEL DISINTEGRATION, cf. disintegration. (1970)
⚀ MULTILEVEL DISINTEGRATION. Multilevel disintegration is a process of developing an authentic hierarchy of values from conflicts between higher and lower levels of instinctive, emotional and intellectual functions. The conflicts are conscious since they involve the awareness of valuing one level over another, therefore, they are conflicts of value. (1972)
⚀ MULTILEVELNESS. Division of functions into different levels, for instance, the spinal, subcortical, and cortical levels in the nervous system. Individual perception of many levels of external and internal reality appears at a certain stage of development, here called multilevel disintegration. See Levels of Functions. (1972)
⚀ NEGATIVE. Advelopmental, involutional. Refers to factors which arrest development or act against it either by making mental organization rigid, or discomposing it (involution). (1972)
⚀ NEGATIVE ADJUSTMENT, cf. adjustment. (1970)
⚀ NEGATIVE ADJUSTMENT. Nondevelopmental adjustment. Unqualified conformity to a hierarchy of values prevailing in a person’s social environment. The values are accepted without an independent critical evaluation. It is an acceptance of an external system of value without autonomous choice. An adjustment to “what is.” (1972)
⚀ NEGATIVE DEVELOPMENTAL POTENTIAL. Constitutional predisposition to psychosis, psychopathy, or mental retardation, or other severe disorders preventing development or leading to the dissolution of mental life. (1972)
⚀ NEGATIVE DISINTEGRATION, cf. disintegration. (1970)
⚀ NEGATIVE DISINTEGRATION, or involutional disintegration. A process characterized by the operation of dynamisms dissolving the organization of mental structures and functions. Its end is chronic mental illness. It occurs almost exclusively at the stage of unilevel disintegration. (1972)
⚀ NEGATIVE INTEGRATION, a nondevelopmental pathological form of integration (cf.) which involves emotional retardation (cf.). Observable in psychopathy, paranoia, and in some forms of oligophrenia. (1970)
⚀ NEGATIVE MALADJUSTMENT, cf. adjustment. (1970)
⚀ NEGATIVE MALADJUSTMENT. Rejection of social norms and accepted patterns of behavior because of the controlling power of primitive drives and nondevelopmental or pathologically deformed structures and functions. In the extreme case it takes the form of psychosis, psychopathy, or criminal activity. (1972)
⚀ NEGATIVE REGRESSION. Thinking, experiencing, and acting resulting from regression to lower and more primitive levels of behavior. (1972)
⚀ NERVOUSNESS. Enhanced psychic overexcitability in the form of excitability of movements, senses, affect, imagination, and intellect. Nervousness does not in any way entail the impairment of mental functions. (1972)
⚀ NEURASTHENIA. A type of psychoneurosis characterized by cycles of excitation followed by excessive fatigue, even exhaustion. Lower level of psychasthenia, frequently associated with obsessions and phobias. (1972)
⚀ NEUROPSYCHIC PROCESSES. Mental and emotional processes occurring at the neurological level intimately connected with somatic functions and primitive emotional and instinctual functions. (1972)
⚀ NEUROSES, a term closely related to the term psychoneurosis, denoting mental disturbances with a distinct dysfunction of the sympathetic nervous system or with functional disorders of internal organs (German: Organneurosen). While psychoneuroses can be said to be of a psychic or of a psychosomatic nature, neuroses, in comparison, are rather somatopsychic. (1970)
⚀ NEUROSIS. Psychophysiological or psychosomatic disorders characterized by a dominance of somatic processes. There are no detectable organic defects, although the functions may be severely affected. (1972)
⚀ NUCLEI. Incipient forms of developmental factors which may or may not develop. (1972)
⚀ OCULOCARDIAC REFLEX. Reflex obtained by lightly pressing on the eyeballs (closed eyelids) and measuring the pulse. The reflex is said to be positive if fluctuation in the pulse rate is observed. (1972)
⚀ ONE-SIDED DEVELOPMENT. Type of development limited to one talent or ability, or to a narrow range of abilities and mental functions. In such development the creative instinct and empathy appear absent. In exceptionally capable individuals their one-sided development may come under the control of a primitive disposing and directing center and in the extreme case may take the form of psychopathy or paranoia. (1972)
⚀ ORGANIZED MULTILEVEL DISINTEGRATION. Developmental level IV. A stage of development when a high level of self-awareness makes possible a greater degree of self-direction and self-determination. External conflicts disappear, and internal conflicts become less overwhelming and intense. (1972)
⚀ OVEREXCITABILITY. See Psychic Overexcitability. (1972)
⚀ PARANOID SCHIZOPHRENIA. Type of schizophrenia characterized by delusions of persecution, or delusions of power, or both. (1972)
⚀ PARASYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM. See Autonomic nervous system. (1972)
⚀ PARTIAL DISINTEGRATION, cf. disintegration. (1970)
⚀ PARTIAL DISINTEGRATION. Disintegration within one or a few related dynamisms. It may lead either to reintegration at a previous level, to reintegration at a lower level (primitive integration), to partial integration at a higher level, or to global disintegration. Partial disintegrations followed by partial integrations at a higher level characterize the developmental pattern of people with average developmental potential. In contrast, global disintegration and global secondary integration (if any) are the privilege of people with rich endowment for accelerated development. (1972)
⚀ PARTIAL SECONDARY INTEGRATION consists in a cohesive organization of some of the mental functions at a higher level. It comes about as a result of partial multilevel disintegration and is due to the process of inner psychic transformation within a limited sphere of functions. (1970)
⚀ PARTIAL SECONDARY INTEGRATION. A cohesive organization of some of the emotional and instinctive functions at a higher level. It comes about as a result of partial multilevel disintegration. (1972)
⚀ PATHOLOGICAL HEREDITARY ENDOWMENT. The occurrence in the family tree of psychoses, psychopathy, mental retardation, or other forms of mental disorder. (1972)
⚀ PATHOLOGICAL RUMINATION. A type of obsession characterized by the tendency to dwell on the same problem without seeking to find a solution to break the “vicious circle.” It is typical of unilevel processes of disintegration. (1972)
⚀ PERSEVERATION. Persistent and recurrent though or image; compulsive repetition of the same phrase or word over and over again. See also Affective Perseveration. (1972)
⚀ PERSONALITY, a harmonious and stable organization of highly refined basic mental qualities and functions (cf.) (higher emotions, higher instincts, higher intellectual processes, interest, concerns, abilities) which comes about as a result of the full process of positive disintegration (cf.) and universal mental development. Although personality in its complete, fully developed and fully harmonized form appears only at the stage of secondary integration, it starts taking shape during later stages of multilevel disintegration. Personality is a self-chosen, self-confirmed and self-educating mental structure, i.e. a structure attainable only through an intensive work of developmental dynamisms, particularly such as inner psychic transformation, the third factor, autonomy and authentism (cf. each).
◘ The characteristic features of personality are: experiential awareness of one’s personality ideal, the disposing and directing center at its highest level, a high level and great intensity of emotional life, inner psychic transformation and reflection, manifold concerns and interest, openness to the full range of experiences, a high degree of insight into oneself, self-control, ability for further development, presence and strong motivating role of the instincts of creativity and self-perfection.
◘ Personality is a stable organization of mental functions in a twofold sense: (1) Once the primitive levels of functions have been disintegrated and destroyed and the higher levels elaborated and integrated into a cohesive, all-around structure, slipping backwards to lower levels is no longer possible. One cannot give up values which one learned to appreciate through an authentic, painful process of inner psychic transformation. (2) Although an individual who attained the level of personality continues to grow and may attain some new qualities, no change of his central qualities is possible. His individual characteristics of a high developmental level will persist.
◘ Personality represents the highest developmental level presently accessible to clinical insight and empirical study. It combines both empirical and evaluative elements. The evaluative element is not arbitrarily postulated, but derived from what is empirically verifiable and from the general conception of mental development underlying the theory of positive disintegration (cf. personality ideal). (1970)
⚀ PERSONALITY. A self-aware, self-chosen, self-affirmed, and self-determined unity of essential individual psychic qualities. Personality as defined here appears at the level of secondary integration (q.v.). (1972)
⚀ PERSONALITY IDEAL, is an individual standard against which one evaluates one’s actual personality structure. It arises out of one’s experience and development. Personality ideal is shaped autonomously and authentically, often in conflict and struggle with the prevalent ideals of society. It is a mental structure which is first intuitively conceived in its broad outline and serves as the empirical model for shaping one’s own personality (cf.). In proportion to the higher levels of development, reached by the individual, his ideal of personality becomes more and more distinct and plays an increasingly significant role in his inner psychic milieu and particularly in the disposing and directing center. This process is called the dynamization of the ideal.
◘ The tendency to adjust to the ideal of personality is a form of tendency to adjust to what ought to be and refusal to adjust to lower level emotions and urges. The ideal of personality should not be confused with one-sided developmental programs, e.g. the so-called ideal sportsman, businessman, etc., which do not result from an authentic process of multilevel disintegration and inner psychic transformation, but from lower level emotional and intellectual processes. (cf. personality). (1970)
⚀ PERSONALITY IDEAL. An individual standard against which one evaluates one’s actual personality structure. It arises out of one’s experience and development. At first the ideal may be an imitation, nevertheless, with the growth of individual awareness it becomes authentic and autonomous to eventually become the highest dynamism in the development of personality. (1972)
⚀ PERVERSION NEUROSIS. A neurosis resulting from a very strong attraction and repulsion and internal conflict in relation to uncommon sexual urges such as fetishism, necrophilia, homosexuality, or severe masturbation. Internal tension and self-awareness are acting strongly and simultaneously, because there is the awareness of the strength of the impulses and their aberrant nature together with a refinement which removes the possibility of hurting or shocking a sexual partner. (1972)
⚀ POLARITY. Existing between two opposites, as in emotional fluctuations between pleasant and unpleasant, between joyous and sad. (1972)
⚀ POSITIVE. Developmental or evolutional. Also used to refer to development with emerging direction of growth from lower to a higher level of functions (process of hierarchization). (1972)
⚀ POSITIVE ADJUSTMENT, cf. adjustment. (1970)
⚀ POSITIVE ADJUSTMENT, or developmental adjustment. Conformity to higher levels of a hierarchy of values self-discovered and consciously followed. It is an acceptance of values after critical examination and an autonomous choice. It is an adjustment to “what ought to be.” Such hierarchy of values is controlled by (or developed from) the personality ideal. (1972)
⚀ POSITIVE CONFLICT is a conflict which incites or intensifies developmental forces, particularly by disintegrating lower level structures and functions and by deepening the process of self-consciousness and inner psychic transformation. The appearance and development of inner conflicts promotes inhibition and sublimation of external conflicts. Consequently stresses, critical life experiences, anxieties, depressions, etc., basically undesirable from the standpoint of mental health, the theory of positive disintegration regards as significant elements in potentially positive development. (1970)
⚀ POSITIVE DISINTEGRATION, cf. disintegration. (1970)
⚀ POSITIVE DISINTEGRATION. A process of development involving characteristic dynamisms and some degree of awareness of development. It releases the creative powers of the individual, it enriches his psyche, and it carries his growth toward a higher level of psychological functioning.
◘ There are four stages of positive disintegration forming an invariant sequence: (1) unilevel disintegration, (2) spontaneous multilevel disintegration, (3) organized multilevel disintegration, (4) transition to secondary integration. (1972)
⚀ POSITIVE MALADJUSTMENT, cf. adjustment. (1970)
⚀ POSITIVE MALADJUSTMENT. A conflict with and rejection of those standards and attitudes of one’s social environment which are incompatible with one’s growing awareness of a higher scale of values which is developing as an internal imperative. (1972)
⚀ POSITIVE REGRESSION. Regression in the service of the ego. Temporary regression to an earlier emotional period, or withdrawal from current activities in search of isolation. It is caused by a need for saturation with the carefree and warm experiences of childhood, or by a need to have psychic rest, or a time off to accommodate an experiential load. Positive regression allows an individual to prepare more fully the unfolding of his creative potential, to prevent mental disorders, to preserve and develop his autonomy. It is common in people with emotional and imaginational overexcitability. (1972)
⚀ PRESPASM. A prespasmatic state. A state of “preparation” for psychic spasm (q.v.) resulting from painful external or internal stimuli and tension. These stimuli evoke unpleasant reactions and result in fear or flight (avoidance) in acute, unconscious forms. (1972)
⚀ PREVENTIVE MECHANISMS. See Protective Mechanisms. (1972)
⚀ PRIMITIVE DRIVES are those drives which are simple, automatic, involuntary, unconscious or with a relatively low degree of consciousness, stereotyped, constitutionally determined, e.g. low levels of the sexual or maternal instincts. (1970)
⚀ PRIMITIVE DRIVES. Drives (q.v.) operating at the level of primitive integration. Their action is characterized by great intensity, inflexibility, automatism, egocentrism, biological control. They lack the conscious components of reflection, empathy, inhibition. For instance, sexual drive at the primitive level precludes personal involvement with the sexual partner, precludes considerations of discomfort or hurt sustained by the partner. (1972)
⚀ PRIMITIVE FUNCTIONS. Emotional and instinctive functions (q.v.) operating at the level of primitive integration. They are characterized by automatism, impulsiveness, stereotypy, egocentrism, lack of inhibition, lack or low degree of consciousness. (1972)
⚀ PRIMITIVE INTEGRATION, or primary integration, an integration of mental functions, subordinated to primitive drives (cf.). There is no hierarchy of instincts; their prevalence depends entirely on their momentary greater intensity. Intelligence is used only as a tool, completely subservient to primitive urges, without any transformative role. Interest and adaptation are limited to the satisfaction of primitive desires. There is no inner psychic milieu, no mental transformation of stimuli, no inner conflicts. Primary integration in infants is limited to the satisfaction of the need for food, sleep and motion. (1970)
⚀ PRIMITIVE INTEGRATION, or Primary Integration. Developmental level I. An integration of all mental functions into a cohesive structure controlled by primitive drives. (1972)
⚀ PRISE DE CONSCIENCE. See Dynamic Insight. (1972)
⚀ PROSPECTION. An ability to temporarily transpose one’s thoughts and feelings into the future, usually associated with rich imagination and fantasy. It may also have a strong intuitive component as a sense of timing of the development to come. Characterizes not only dreamers but also dynamic individuals given to construction of hypotheses or long-range planning. (1972)
⚀ PROTECTIVE MECHANISMS. Psychoneurotic processes and dynamisms which by their relatively mild disintegrating power protect against mental breakdown or suicide. The richer the hereditary endowment the stronger are the protective dynamisms. Cf. Defense through development. (1972)
⚀ PSYCHASTHENIA. A type of psychoneurosis characterized by lowered bio-psychic tonus, especially in regard to primitive functions and adjustment to actual reality. Psychasthenia is characterized by feelings of inadequacy, obsessions, anxieties (especially existential), depressions. (1972)
⚀ PSYCHIC OVEREXCITABILITY. Higher than average responsiveness to stimuli, manifested either by psychomotor, sensual, emotional (affective), imaginational, or intellectual excitability, or the combination thereof. (1972)
⚀ PSYCHIC SPASM. Psychic state analogous to a physiological spasm. It is the sudden arrest in an unpleasant way of ongoing mental activity as a result of new and unfamiliar experiences. It may also be evoked by the sudden appearance of an uncontrollable impulse. (1972)
⚀ PSYCHIC SPASMOPHILIA. Condition analogous to the “spasmophilic” constitution (see Spasmophilia). Psychic spasmophilia does not depend on the physical spasmophilic constitution but may, when present, function together with it. The characteristic traits are excessive sudden responses to positive and negative psychic stimuli. Psychic spasmophilia is an expression of susceptibility to frustration or to being hurt. It acts also as a psychic defense against too strong stimuli by giving a warning signal to consciousness about impending emotional danger or overwhelming joy, which may upset the balance. This mechanism serves the role of delaying or “diluting” negative and positive stimuli of an intensity higher than the system can handle. (1972)
⚀ PSYCHOMOTOR CRISIS. Acting out of psychic tension through temper tantrums, destructive behavior, running away, or hysterical conversion. Psychomotor crises are frequent in cases of psychomotor and emotional overexcitability not combined with other enriching components of the developmental potential which in this case is rather limited, and due to the absence of a multilevel inner psychic milieu does not offer the possibility of a positive release. (1972)
⚀ PSYCHONEUROSES, syndromes of the processes of positive disintegration. They show symptoms of disharmony and conflicts within the inner psychic milieu and with the external environment. The source of disharmony and conflicts is a favorable hereditary endowment and the ability to accelerate development through positive disintegration towards personality, i.e. towards a cohesive structure of functions at secondary integration. This conception of psychoneuroses does not consider them pathological, but rather as positive forces in mental development.
◘ Psychoneurotic processes, as any other mental processes, may occur at different levels. The difference may be either interneurotic, i.e. between various kinds of psychoneuroses, or intraneurotic, i.e. within the same kind of psychoneurosis. These differences are a result of the cooperation between “pathological,” but positive psychoneurotic dynamisms and related “nonpsychoneurotic” developmental dynamisms (such as interests, concerns, abilities, some of the creative dynamisms etc.). At a high level of development both of the above kinds of mental dynamisms operate in an inseparable interaction. An interneurotic scale would include the following psychoneuroses in the order from lower to higher levels; somatic neuroses, hypochondria, neurasthenia, hysteria, depressive psychoneurosis, anxiety psychoneurosis, infantile psychoneurosis, obsessive psychoneurosis, psychasthenia. Intraneurotic levels are clearly distinguishable in hysteria, from the hysterical character through hysterical conversion to the highest levels of increased emotional and imaginative excitability, high levels of nervousness and tendency towards contemplation. (1970)
⚀ PSYCHONEUROSIS. A more or less organized form of growth through positive disintegration. Lower psychoneuroses are predominantly psychosomatic in nature, higher psychoneuroses are highly conscious internal struggles whose tensions and frustrations are not anymore translated into somatic disorders. (1972)
⚀ PSYCHOSOMATIZATION. An excessive tendency for transposition of intense psychical experiences onto somatic processes. The high tension is absorbed by somatic functions thereby altering their course. This can be manifested as paresis, paralysis, hysterical numbness, etc. In psychosomatization the genesis of a disturbance is believed to be in the psyche. Cf. Autonomic Somatization. (1972)
⚀ REALITY FUNCTION. A function which guides the behavior of the individual in his testing of internal and external reality. It adapts his behavior to the demands of those levels of reality which he perceives as the more vital. Reality function at a low level deals with the basic needs of everyday living. Reality function at a high level deals with the experiences and processes of inner creative reality. (1972)
⚀ REGRESSION, positive, consists in a temporary reversion to an earlier emotional state, that is some forms of emotional infantilism (cf. emotional immaturity). In most cases positive regression is caused by the need for emotional saturation with infantile experiences, the need for a longer period for the development of creative functions which are exposed to the danger of disintegration under the impact of the external world. Emotional regression allows the individual to mature more deeply and many-sidedly, to prepare more fully the unfolding of his creative forces, to prevent mental disturbances, to preserve and develop independence and autonomy of his own self. It constitutes a conscious or semiconscious protection of one’s own development toward personality through the search for the most proper conditions for its growth. (1970)
⚀ REGRESSION. See Negative Regression and Positive Regression. (1972)
⚀ REINTEGRATION, an integration subsequent to a period of disintegration but which does not occur at a higher level than the former integration. Reintegration may mean a return to primitive integration or to a partial secondary integration. (1970)
⚀ RESPONSIBILITY, feeling of, is a function of mental development and depends mainly on the ability to understand and evaluate objectively, especially to understand other people’s developmental difficulties and shortcomings and one’s own role in assisting them and cooperating. The feeling of responsibility arises mainly from self-control, sudden insight, inner psychic transformation and empathy. It grows through an increase in consciousness and insight into the many sided and multilevel structure of reality and through active participation of higher emotions, especially empathy. It involves the willingness to give care, protection and help to those in need, to the family, social group, nation, the human race, etc. (1970)
⚀ SCHIZONEUROSIS. A psychopathological syndrome on the borderline of psychoneurosis and schizophrenia (psychosis). (1972)
⚀ SCHIZOPHRENIA SIMPLEX. Type of schizophrenia characterized by withdrawal, apathy, indifference. It progresses slowly but irreversibly. (1972)
⚀ SCHIZOTHYMIC. Showing tendency to an uneven, diffuse, inconsistent behavior with weak syntony and poor adjustment to the environment, often with symptoms of queerness. (1972)
⚀ SECONDARY INTEGRATION, global, results from the full process of positive disintegration. It is an integration of mental functions at a high level, with a dominant role of higher emotions, indicating a high degree of autonomy (cf.) and authenticity (cf.). Secondary integration is strictly correlated with personality (cf.). To denote an integration subsequent (in time) to a period of disintegration, but not at a higher level, the term reintegration (cf.) is reserved. (1970)
⚀ SECONDARY INTEGRATION. Developmental level V. The integration of all mental functions into a harmonious structure controlled by higher emotions such as the dynamism of personality ideal, autonomy and authenticity. Secondary integration is the outcome of the full process of positive disintegration. (1972)
⚀ SELF-PERFECTION INSTINCT consists in a tendency towards gradual attainment of higher developmental levels and involves the whole mental structure of an individual with a special emphasis on the moral sphere and empathy, has a much wider range than the creative instinct and includes its basic components, arises and develops during both stages of multilevel disintegration, operates in association with the dynamism of inner psychic transformation, the ideal of personality and leads directly to the formation of personality. (1970)
⚀ SELF-PERFECTION INSTINCT. The higher form of the creative instinct (q.v.). It appears in accelerated development when the individual’s primary concern is his self-growth. (1972)
⚀ SHAME, feeling of, one of the earliest developmental dynamisms, consists in self-conscious distress and embarrassment, results from predominance of external over internal sensitivity, usually is combined with a strong somatic component, with a slight element of anxiety, with a need to withdraw, to hide away. The feeling of shame is usually associated with the dynamism of dissatisfaction with oneself, with the feeling of guilt and with the feeling of inferiority towards other people. (1970)
⚀ SIMPLE SCHIZOPHRENIA. See Schizophrenia Simplex. (1972)
⚀ SOMATOPSYCHIC. Refers to the lowest level of psychoneurotic processes, i.e. those occurring without any participation of consciousness. At the somatopsychic level mental processes are almost entirely under the control of biological processes. The next higher level is the psychosomatic where psychological tensions are transposed to somatic processes via the autonomic nervous system. (1972)
⚀ SOMNAMBULISM. Sleepwalking. Walking and carrying out complex activities while in sleep, or a hypnotic or related state. (1972)
⚀ SPASMOPHILIA. The tendency toward muscular twitching, spasms, or convulsions from even slight mechanical or electrical stimulation. Psychic Spasmophilia (q.v.) is a metaphor used here to describe easily mobilized strong and sudden involuntary emotional reactions, tensions, which are experienced not unlike internal convulsions. (1972)
⚀ SPONTANEOUS MULTILEVEL DISINTEGRATION. Developmental Level III. The stage of development which occurs with the emergence of a direction of development and a sense of “higher” and “lower.” These two phenomena are strictly interdependent. They are the result of intense emotional experiences and spontaneously developing conflicts of value (see Hierarchization). (1972)
⚀ "STUTTERING” OF SOMATIC FUNCTIONS. A tendency toward spastic psychophysical activity. It is observed as sudden blushing or growing pale, as pharyngeal spasms, or “stuttering” of urination. It is the manifestation of the transformation of very strong somatopsychic (q.v.) tension to spastic symptoms. (1972).
⚀ SUBJECT-OBJECT IN ONESELF, one of the main developmental dynamisms which consists in taking interest in and observation of one’s own mental life in an attempt to gain a better understanding of oneself and to evaluate oneself critically. In individuals capable of accelerated and universal development the interest in their inner world may temporarily prevail over the interest in the external world. This dynamism differs from introspection inasmuch as the latter is carried out for purely descriptive, nonevaluative purposes. Unlike introspection, this dynamism has a strong emotional component in spite of its basically intellectual character. It realizes sudden insights, constitutes an essential element in the process of inner psychic transformation and is the main basically intellectual dynamism of multilevel disintegration. It is a form of interiorized cognitive instinct and appears in correlation with the dynamisms of the third factor, disposing and directing center and ideal of personality. (1970)
⚀ SUBJECT-OBJECT IN ONESELF. One of the main developmental dynamisms which consists in observing one’s own mental life in an attempt to better understand oneself and to evaluate oneself critically. It is a process of looking at oneself as if from outside (the self as object) and of perceiving the individuality of others (the other as subject, i.e. individual knower). (1972)
⚀ SYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM. See Autonomic nervous system. (1972)
⚀ SYMPATHICOTONIA. A state resulting from high tension in the sympathetic nervous system manifested by accelerated pulse, high blood pressure, dilated pupils, or hypoacidity of the stomach. (1972)
⚀ SYNTONY, EMPATHY, these terms are used to signify the capacity for insight into and participation in other people’s feelings and experiences. It is of importance to distinguish primitive, impulsive forms of syntony, associated with the gregarious instinct, from more conscious and deliberate forms, usually called empathy, which belong to higher emotions, contain strong intellectual components and result from inner psychic transformation and the processes of positive disintegration. An individual having a high level of empathy shows towards others benevolence, readiness and willingness to assist them in their problems, but at the same time may express a disapproval of some of their attitudes and acts. (1970)
⚀ SYNTONY. Responsiveness to the environment, chiming in with. Primitive syntony is impulsive behavior and is not much different from gregariousness. Higher levels of syntony involve insight into other people’s feelings and experiences. More conscious and deliberate forms of syntony combined with an attitude of helpfulness we call empathy. (1972)
⚀ TETANOIDAL PERSONALITY. Personality type differentiated by Jaensch and characterized by muscular twitching, spasms, tendency to convulsions, etc., as in tetany. The activity of the parasympathetic nervous system is prevalent. Psychologically a tetanoidal individual shows somewhat uncoordinated behavior; his responses are not harmonized and are not integrated. (1972)
⚀ THE THIRD FACTOR is independent from and selective with regard to heredity (the first factor), and environment (the second factor). Its selective role consists in accepting and fostering or rejecting and restraining qualities, inclinations, interests and desires, which one finds either in one’s hereditary endowment or in one’s social environment. Thus the third factor being a dynamism of conscious choice is a dynamism of valuation.
◘ The third factor has a fundamental role in education-of-oneself, and in autopsychotherapy. Its presence and operation is essential in the development toward autonomy and authenticity. It arises and grows as a resultant of both positive hereditary endowment (especially the ability for inner psychic transformation) and positive environmental influences. (1970)
⚀ THIRD FACTOR. The autonomous factor of development. The first factor is the constitutional endowment, the second factor is the social environment. The third factor is the dynamism of conscious choice (valuation) by which one affirms or rejects certain qualities in oneself and in one’s environment. (1972)
⚀ TRANSCENDENTAL OBSESSION. Obsession with problems of transcendence, i.e. with problems of supersensory reality. It is not much different from a scientist’s obsession with an unsolved problem, or an artist’s obsession with the search for new means of expression. (1972)
⚀ TRANSCENDING THE BIOLOGICAL LIFE CYCLE. Replacement of somatic determinants of maturation, aging, or disease, by mental determinants of rich psychic development (accelerated development), continued creativity in spite of aging, continued psychic growth past maturity, etc. (1972)
⚀ TRANSCENDING THE PSYCHOLOGICAL TYPE. Introduction of traits of opposite type to one’s original type, e.g. an extravert becoming to some extent an introvert. This developmental change occurs as a consequence of the dynamism of inner psychic transformation and is characteristic of accelerated development. (1972)
⚀ TYPE, PSYCHOLOGICAL, the totality of individual, psychobiological, constitutional qualities determining the behavior of an individual with regard to himself and his environment. The theory of positive disintegration distinguishes the following psychological types:
◘ The primitively integrated type: his mental structure is dominated and completely controlled by primitive drives which make use of intelligence in a purely instrumental way. In this type intelligence is used only as a tool towards ends determined entirely by primitive emotions; the ability for interiorization is very limited; intelligence does not cooperate in the refinement and development of emotions. The mental structure is rigidly stabilized; the development of the individual does not transcend narrow limits circumscribed by the biosocial cycle of life.
◘ The positively integrated type: is a result of the completion of the process of positive disintegration. Its cohesiveness and harmony has its basis in a fully developed inner psychic milieu of great richness and deepness; dedicated to creative work and further development it shows faithfulness to the hierarchy of values worked out in the course of development and a high degree of conscious empathy with others.
◘ The positively disintegrated type: shows loosening and disintegration of primitive mental structures and functions on its way towards secondary integration. It may be at various stages of positive disintegration starting from unilevel disintegration through the spontaneous and organized stages of multilevel disintegration till the transitory stage towards secondary integration. Its characteristic trait is the presence and operation of developmental dynamisms, in nuclear form at unilevel disintegration, gaining a more and more distinct and dynamic character with the progress of positive disintegration.
◘ The chronically disintegrated type: may also be called “developmentally neutral” type. The state of disintegration is permanent, it does not pass over into either dissolution or secondary integration. It has a mixed, positive-negative overtone. It is positive inasmuch as it is characterized by sensitivity, plasticity and creative abilities, however, it shows lack of distinct developmental forces and tendencies to pass into secondary integration.
◘ The negatively disintegrated type: is characterized by a dissolution of mental structures and functions which signifies mental illness with unfavorable course and prognosis. It is recognizable by the lack of developmental dynamisms. (1970)
⚀ UNILEVEL DISINTEGRATION, cf. disintegration. (1970)
⚀ UNILEVEL DISINTEGRATION. Developmental Level II. Protracted and recurrent conflicts between drives and emotional states of similar level and of similar intensity appearing as ambivalences and ambitendencies (q.v.), e.g. changing and alternating states of attraction and repulsion, love and hate, joy and sadness, excitement and depression, moodiness. The conflicts may not be consciously experienced. When they are, they are experienced as pulls of equal value, in contrast to multilevel conflicts, and, therefore, do not tend towards a solution but seek immediate palliatives like alcohol, drugs, or suicide. (1972)
⚀ VAGOSYMPATHETIC DYSTONIA. See Autonomic Disequilibrium. (1972)
⚀ VAGOSYMPATHETIC SYSTEM. See Autonomic Nervous System. (1972)
⚀ VAGOTONIA. Excessive excitability of the vagus nerve. A state resulting from high tension in the vagus nerve manifested by slowing down of pulse, arrhythmia, low blood pressure, constricted pupils, peripheral vascular disorders. (1972)
⚀ VALUE. See Hierarchization. (1972)
⚀ WAXY FLEXIBILITY. A passive response by which a person’s arm or posture retains the position in which it has been placed. Usually thought to be characteristic of catatonic schizophrenia this response is easily obtained from normal individuals. (1972)
⚀ WILL. What has been traditionally called “will” is at lower levels of development identical with a primitive drive or a group of such drives. At the stage of unilevel disintegration it succumbs to a disintegration into a variety of independent functions and structures. It may be said that there are “many wills” at this level. In the course of multilevel disintegration “the will” becomes more and more independent from primitive drives. Its role is fulfilled by the emerging new dynamism of the disposing and directing center. At still higher stages of development the “will” is unified with and integrated in personality. (1970).