Reviews The role of conjuring in Saulteaux society (1942). The aim of this volume is twofold. First, the author proposes to report the function of one form of shamanism within a group of the Ojibwa Indians. Second, he aims to compare these conjuring practices with those employed by other tribal groups. The author, to accomplish these ends, presents the results of exhaustive personal observations (1930-1940) made in a group of 900 Indians in the Lake Winnipeg region.
Shamans' communities grant them privileged status to attend to those groups' psychological and spiritual needs. Shamans claim to modify their attentional states and engage in activities that enable them to access information not ordinarily attainable by members of the social group that has granted them shamanic status.
Reviews the book, A Study in the Psychology of Ritualism by Frederick Goodrich Henke (see record 1910-10191-000). This study is a suggestive application of social psychology to the important phenomena of ritualism, not only in primitive, but also in developed, religion. A wealth of concrete anthropological material is first presented, showing the close relation of ritual to the general life. Then the operation of the fundamental instincts is traced. Comparative psychology is cited as the field in which we may look for the impulses in early human society.
Reviews the book, Psychological Problems of Religion-Ritual: Psychoanalytic Studies by Theodor Reik and translated by Douglas Byran from the 2nd German editoin (1946). It may be expected that Reik's attempt to understand some aspects of spiritual experience in terms of psychology of the unconscious will be held meaningless by some. Religious ritual and belief, though explicable to the analyst as reaction formations against unconscious impulses, strike so congenial a note in the human breast as to be regarded as unassailable.
Reviews the book "The Psychological Problems of Religion. Ritual: Psychoanalytic Studies" by Theodor Reik (see record 1947-00539-000). A knowledge of the nature of the original impulses from which the present rituals were derived can throw significant light on modern as well as ancient religion. In his book, Dr. Reik attempts to develop such understanding by reconstructing from the forms of expression and hidden tendencies which the ritual, as he interprets it, still presents. For this purpose, he selects for analysis religious customs that are still practiced.
This article discusses, that speculations about the therapeutic value of the "milieu" in which our patients live are neither as new nor as revolutionary as the enthusiasts, as well as the detractors of "milieu therapy" occasionally want them to appear. The ritual interaction between patient and therapist is certainly sharply circumscribed. Even items such as horizontality of body posture and geographical placement of the analyst's chair are considered important conditions.
Three functions traditionally recognized as being in the domain of religion are increasingly being assumed by mental health practitioners: 1) explanation of the unknown; 2) ritual and social functions; and 3) the definition of values. The authors recommend that religious and mental health practitioners define their functions and roles more clearly, so that they may interact more constructively
This article highlights the adventurous activities of bands recruited, in search of finding the source of the problem in large and small streams emptied into the major river along the river. The village custom demanded that, regularly, all the people, but most often only the youngest and weakest of them, run full speed over the nearest bridge. For those who succeeded, and there were many, there were honors and prizes. It was said that those who were most honored had completed so many crossings that the ritual was now required of them only seldom.
Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training
Suggests that the creation of rituals in therapy for the bereaved offers methods of addressing grief work and constitutes an adjunct to traditional forms of counseling and psychotherapy. Nine specifically therapeutic properties of rituals are discussed. Psychological, social, physical, cultural, religious, and philosophical characteristics specific to the loss should determine the design of the therapeutic ritual. Case vignettes are included. (16 ref)