Transference in our relationships

redirecting feelings from childhood to a current relationship

One of the helpful concepts of mainstream psychotherapy is transference: the unconscious redirection of feelings from a childhood relationship to a current one. This knowledge is useful for Relational Energy Healing work because our focus is educating the infant mind (inner child) within us as part of improving all our personal relationships. Also, many of the spiritual ideals leading to gaining higher consciousness parallel this therapeutic education process of child becoming adult. It is an unrealistic fantasy that presupposes we can move from the infant self to a high level of soul awakening without first developing a functional adult self (see the extensive works of Ken Wilber) Despite being full of innocent promise, the infant mind is unprepared for the complexity and sophistication of the outer world. We must do inner – and relational – work in order to bridge our three inner psychic states of child, adult, and soul.

Transference is also where the infant mind within us projects or overlays infant-level needs and demands onto another person. Because the infant is natively narcissistic (self-orientated) rather than developmentally mutual (I/Thou orientated) it must attempt to force or seduce its will onto the mother (or “others” in the outside world) in order to survive. Two major strategies of the child consciousness are either assuming helpless cuteness (an evolutionary design to engage the mother and have her happily cooperate with the survival needs of the child) or the use of threats (tantrums, refusals to cooperate, withdrawal of love, etc). There are other strategies, of course, but it is seduction (“Give me what I want because I’m lovable.”) and coercion (“Give me what I want or you are in trouble.”) that are fundamental to the human psyche. Many of our adult actions with others are, in truth, actions taken by the infant within us, designed to seduce or impel the other to meet our real (or imagined) needs. Through these and other lenses the infant mind actively projects its survival strategies onto the other, with no regard for the psychic invasion that results.

Everyone who is in a relationship is dealing with the reality of this projection or overlay mechanism, energetically placed upon them either by their partner or their family upbringing. For instance, if you were raised as the eldest child in a family, as the stereotype of “hero” who is available to others at the expense of your own needs, you are carrying the transference of this role in your auric system. In many cases, the eldest (or designated family “caretaker”) carries within herself the elements of adult self consciousness abdicated by a parent. This consciousness, while not belonging to you, has become an unconscious part of your identity.

As such, you will attempt to be “heroic” in your relationships in order to get your personal needs met, out of loyalty to a parent who abdicated their adult self, as well for you to feel a sense of value. For those people in the world who unconsciously seek a substitute parent to take care of them in life (the other end of the abdicating parent syndrome is the needy or poorly-parented person) your default stance of self- sacrifice will be a perfect emotional fit for them. The poorly-parented will flock to you, and the polarity of hero/needy person pattern may dominate all your relationships, business and personal, and significantly impact the life choices you will make.

Mainstream psychotherapy sessions can be invaluable in awakening to the unconscious patterns we have taken on in our lives, where we come to see how we are either in transference with our partner (our infant self projections onto the partner) or how we are affected by their transference with us. Healthy adult relationships seek to balance infant needs of the self with the infant needs of others, and to make it all work. If things are not working out in your relationship it can help to get clear on the transference dynamics that exist, and for you to discover alternative ways of dealing with the psychic and emotional forces at play. Breaking free of the unconscious grip of transference relationships does require an investment of time as well as the commitment to much inner work, but one way this process can be enhanced is by energy work.

Energy healing can speed up the process of awakening from transference, sometimes dramatically. For instance, chakra cords can be cleared or untangled, chakra self-cords can be implanted or reinforced to anchor a deep sense of self-connection, astral influences can be eliminated, and the psychic debris of family heritage can be cleaned up. With a balanced combination of psychotherapy and energy therapy, you can significantly reduce the worse symptoms of transference influences, as well as learn to recognize and attenuate the transference effect projected onto you by others.

Working through your habitual transference issues also makes a tremendous difference in all your relationships. In the example given above you can learn neither to be a victim nor to unknowingly abuse others. You can choose one of several ways out of the dilemma of unhealthy patterns in any relationship. Or, you can improve upon a potential or an existing good relationship. And along the way you can learn important life skills that will increase your options and bring increasing happiness. You can come to recognize – and change – unconscious psychic or emotional forces as they arise, and birth into the world your true self: infant mind, adult self, and your soul identity. This trinity of forces is our true nature as human beings, and awakening to that nature can become the ultimate meaning of our journey through life.

© 2016 by Dean Ramsden. All rights reserved.

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