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Ulanov, A.B. (2020). The Agony of Integration and the Blessings of Finitude - Facing ‘Extinction Points’ and Moments of Madness. J. Anal. Psychol., 65(3):584-599.

(2020). Journal of Analytical Psychology, 65(3):584-599

The Agony of Integration and the Blessings of Finitude - Facing ‘Extinction Points’ and Moments of Madness

Ann Belford Ulanov, M.Div., Ph.D., L.H.D

This paper explores the inevitable pain that integration requires in our individuation process. The unspeakable agony we defended against in order to survive we now experience consciously, including moments of going out of existence at the core of our madness. Clinical examples are given of these ‘extinction points’ and the abject helplessness analysand and analyst suffer in the face of this destructiveness. The first and second witness to this process (usually the analyst and the psyche itself) and the primordial creative life force are recognized in the process of recovery, a recovery that recoups the blessings of our finite human living.

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