This unique training offers students a holistic, client centred approach to counselling and therapy. It provides a humanistic approach to mental and spiritual health and well-being.
Transpersonal work is about seeing behind the mask and attempting to experience greater authenticity and creativity in one’s life by enhancing what they have already done that is healthy and worth acknowledging. It takes our human potential and pushes us to cultivate already developed skills. It also combines scientific knowledge with traditional healing models and techniques that demonstrate how different cultural beliefs define notions of normality. Learning through direct experience ensures that the theory is embedded and embodied and that students engage deeply with their own experience to support healing and self-knowledge. It’s action learning! Here, through experience itself, we explore how we bring depth, intimacy and presence to relationships with others, with our world and within ourselves and we champion the spirit of enquiry.
Through a deep engagement with the visual arts our students are enabled to enter ‘an educated co-operation with image intelligences’ (Angelo 2003), whilst through the art of counselling they are enabled to bring this co-operation as facilitation of the transformation of others. In the tradition that Robert Lawlor calls anthropocosmic, articulated by Rudolf Steiner’s anthroposophy, we believe that an imaginal engagement with the muses or the arts and their archetypal language, facilitates individual expression and improves health.
Anthroposophy is a modern spiritual path that cherishes and respects the freedom of each individual. Its fundamental basis is to understand human beings through three dimensions of Physical body, Soul and Spirit.
For Steiner, Anthroposophy was the path that could ‘lead the spiritual in the human being to the spiritual in the universe’. Rudolf Steiner’s vision of Art, as with all forms of human expression, is that it can become a reflection of the human being’s experience of the divine.
We respect each individual’s search for meaning, and are respectful of the views and belief systems of our students. Tobias students are exposed to cognitive approaches of psychotherapy, as well as to experiential modes of healing engaging the full spectrum of human consciousness. Tobias invests in a vision of a community tolerant of individuality, fostering counsellors and therapists who are able to validate and support meaning in their clients’ experiences.
Tobias is founded upon the principle that both individual healing and collective evolution begin with an individual’s willingness to engage in self-development involving the ‘whole’ person, encompassing body, mind, spirit and environment.
In her poem, Why I wake early, the late Mary Oliver (1982) reflected on the meaning and nature of the human soul and concluded that it was (mostly) unknowable. …and what the soul is, also I believe I will never quite know. Though I play at the edges of knowing, truly I know our part is not knowing, but looking, touching, and loving.”
Despite the intangibility of the soul, maintaining the integrity of the learner’s soul and their internal emotional lives and regarding them with compassion and intentional kindness are very much our guiding principles in course design and teaching. Doing this is the creative challenge of our work.
Lawlor. R (1982) Sacred Geometry: Philosophy and Practice – Art and Imagination
Oliver M (2017) Devotions: The Selected Poems of Mary Oliver