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       Courses

The Holotropic World View: Avenues for Personal and Collective Healing

8-week online course beginning January 21, 2024 (11 am - 12:30 pm Pacific time)

With Renn Butler, PhD and staff TBA

This course is open to laypersons and professionals seeking to learn more about Stanislav Grof's research and discoveries, with a special focus on supporting clients in psychedelic sessions. We will also talk about how Grof's discoveries are confirmed by the most recent developments in modern science.

No paper writing is required for non-academic students.

 

For students in the Ubiquity University Grof Studies degree program - 2 academic credits. 

(Paper writing requirements for graduate students: Master's program 10-15 pages - PhD program 20-25 pages)

$375 USD 

For more info email: rennbutler@shaw.ca.

This online participatory course will explore some of the most profound and influential writings of our time, including Grof's LSD Psychotherapy and The Cosmic Game and Irvin Lazslo's Science and the Akashic Field: An Integral Theory of Everything.

Class One (January 21) - Grof’s LSD Psychotherapy - Renn Butler and staff TBA

People will have a chance to introduce themselves and their work. After talking about the structure of the class, we will discuss Section I - “History of LSD Therapy” - in Grof’s classic manual, LSD Psychotherapy. We will also talk about the similarities and differences between the psychedelic medicines - ketamine, MDMA, psilocybin, and LSD - and how they can be used safely and effectively.

 

Class Two (Jan 28) - LSD Psychotherapy - Renn Butler and staff TBA

We will discuss Sections II, III, IV, and V in LSD Psychotherapy.

 

Class Three (Feb 4) - Consciousness Research and the New Paradigm in Science - William Keepin, PhD

Class description to follow.

 

Class Four (Feb 11) - LSD Psychotherapy - Renn Butler and staff TBA

We will discuss Sections VI, VII, VIII, and IV in LSD Psychotherapy.

 

Class Five (Feb 18) - The Cosmic Game (Part II) - Renn Butler

Through an evocative slideshow, we will explore ways in which the insights from psychedelic and holotropic sessions concerning the fundamental character and motivations of the cosmic creative principle are corroborated in the writings of the world’s great mystical traditions. Based on Grof’s book, The Cosmic Game (1998). We will also discuss Joseph Campbell's concept of the hero's journey - an inner process that both women and men undergo - and its parallels with Grof's perinatal sequence. 

 

Class Six (Feb 25) - Pathways to Wholeness - Renn Butler and staff TBA

We will review the helpful potentials of archetypal and holotropic astrology in helping us to choose good days for sessions, to understand the content that emerges, and to integrate it afterward. We will also look at the basic principles of holotropic dreamwork. Suggested but optional reading: Pathways to Wholeness: Archetypal Astrology and the Transpersonal Journey. (2014) by Renn Butler

 

Class Seven (March 3) - Science and the Akashic Field - Renn Butler and staff TBA

We will discuss Irvin Laszlos’ classic, Science and the Akashic Field: An Integral Theory of Everything (2007). Grof considers Laszlo to be his mentor and emphasizes that Laszlo is the first and, so far, only theoretician to successfully connect all the important dots: integrating the various anomalous phenomena from science and consciousness research into a comprehensive new paradigm.

 

Class Eight (March 31) - Introduction to Psychohistory, Group Discussion and Sharing of Papers

We will introduce the field of psychohistory and examples of how Grof's discovery of the perinatal matrices can help us to illuminate and understand common projections in modern society, especially violent mass movements inspired by demagogues. We will review the insights from Grof's research which suggest that our personal healing can benefit the collective healing of humanity. We will also have time to talk about our insights from the class and share research. Students will be optionally invited to share excerpts from their class paper (a paper is only required for graduate students in our Grof Studies degree programs).

$375 

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Grof Studies: Stanislav Grof’s Research in Deep and Effective Psychedelic Therapy and Self-Exploration

8-week online course which ran from October 1-November 19, 2023 

With Jay Dufrechou, PhD, Renn Butler, PhD, Mari Castle, PhD, and guest presenters

You can purchase the recording of this class - $350 USD

We will also offer it again live next fall.

This course is open to people and professionals seeking to learn more about Stanislav Grof's research and discoveries.

No paper writing is required for non-academic students.

 

For students in the Ubiquity University Grof Studies program degree - 2 academic credits. 

(Paper writing requirements for graduate students: Master's program 10-15 pages - PhD program 20-25 pages)

Email: rennbutler@shaw.ca.

This online course explores the groundbreaking research of Stanislav Grof, considered by many to be the world’s foremost authority on psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy and therapeutic breathwork.

Over his career spanning almost seven decades, Grof made many fundamental discoveries into the deeper structures and therapeutic mechanisms in the human psyche. He realized that a purely biographical model of the psyche (i.e., an exclusive focus on events from infancy to the present) was inadequate to account for the range of inner material encountered in sessions of psychedelic therapy.

Grof proposed two additional domains of the human unconscious: the perinatal layer, which centers on a reliving of the stages of biological delivery along powerful encounters with death and impermanence; and the transpersonal realms, which include verifiable experiences which transcend the usual boundaries of time, space, or of the phenomenal world as we know it altogether. Carl Gustav Jung documented many, though not all, of these transpersonal realms of the collective psyche.

This course will explore Grof’s pivotal contributions in the context of the larger history and field of psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy. We will review his expanded cartography of the human psyche, the architecture of emotional and psychosomatic disorders and effective mechanisms for healing them. We will explore Stan and Christina Grof’s understanding of “spiritual emergency”: spontaneous eruptions of unconscious contents which, when supported, can lead to profound healing and transformation. We will discuss the Grofs’ development of the technique of holotropic breathwork, which he now refers to as Grof® Breathwork, a non-drug substitute for his early psychedelic research.

We will introduce the profound discoveries of Richard Tarnas into the correlation between planetary alignments and the activation of perinatal and transpersonal material in psychedelic healing sessions. Grof and Tarnas consider this emerging new field of archetypal astrology to function as a “Rosetta Stone of the psyche.” Finally, we will explore the powerful congruence between the world’s great mystical traditions and observations from psychedelic and holotropic research into the ultimate structure of the cosmos, examining questions such as “What is the meaning and purpose of life?” “Could our universe have evolved from random, purely physical processes or might it have been created by a higher cosmic intelligence?” and “And if there is a cosmic creative principle, what is our relationship to it?”

At the core of Grof’s lifework is the revaluation and reintroduction of what he calls holotropic (“moving toward wholeness”) states of consciousness into human civilization. These states have played a central, highly valued role in all non-Western and preindustrial societies, such as in the practices of shamanism, the rites of passage, aboriginal healing rituals, and mystery schools of the Mediterranean.

We hope you can join us for this very special first online course in Grof’s research co-sponsored by Ubiquity University and Grof Legacy Training International.

(Sundays starting October 1 from 11 am-1 pm Pacific time on Zoom, followed by Q & A)

 

Class One (October 1) - The Inner Healer - Hosted by Jay Dufrechou, Renn Butler, and Mari Castle

Stanislav and Brigitte Grof will greet the class. We will talk about the structure of the course and review the current state of psychedelic research around the world. We will introduce the fundamental element in Grof’s understanding of the psyche: the liberating direction of our own inner healer or self-healing intelligence.

 

Class Two (Oct 8) - Grof’s Expanded Cartography of the Human Psyche - Renn Butler and Jay Dufrechou

We will explore the principles of set (therapeutic, mystical, recreational, etc.) and setting in safe and effective psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy. Through an evocative slideshow, we will then review Grof’s expanded cartography of the psyche: the biographical, perinatal, and transpersonal layers of the unconscious which emerge routinely in experiential sessions.

 

Class Three (Oct 15) - Grof® Breathwork - Mari Castle, John Stockberger, Amy Burrell, and Renn Butler

We will talk about this powerful non-drug technique for entering holotropic states, developed by Stan and Christina Grof, which uses deep and rapid breathing, evocative music, focused bodywork, and mandala drawing in a supportive group setting. A stand-alone process for deep self-exploration, it is also an excellent way to prepare for and integrate psychedelic experiences.

 

Class Four (Oct 22) - The Architecture of Emotional and Psychosomatic Disorders - Renn Butler

We will look at how the powerful uncovering effect of psychedelic substances combined with Grof’s expanded cartography can shed light on the deepest roots of phobias, obsessive-compulsive neuroses, depression, suicidal behavior, sexual dysfunctions, psychosomatic diseases, and psychoses. We will also talk about the perinatal sources of violence and greed. Many aspects of the characteristic symptomatology of these disorders can be explained from a combination of biographical, perinatal, and transpersonal elements. This new understanding also has important implications for the therapy for these conditions.

 

Class Five (Oct 29) - Effective Therapeutic Mechanisms, Therapeutic Potential, Problems, and Interventions - Renn Butler and Jay Dufrechou

We will review insights from psychedelic therapy and breathwork regarding the powerful therapeutic mechanisms which emerge in holotropic and psychedelic states, the potential resolution of symptoms, and several major types of problems during the course of treatment with their effective interventions. These problems include: the experience of choking and of pressure on the chest; experience of muscular tensions and spasms; problems related to blockages in the genital area, sex, and nudity; overactive, erratic, and aggressive behavior; working with demonic energy; excessive self-control and inability to let go; working with nausea and tendencies to vomit; standing and dancing in sessions; and reliving the memory of biological birth. We will also talk about how our own inner work can help heal the collective psyche of humanity.

 

Class Six (Nov 5) - Spiritual Emergency: The Understanding and Treatment of Crises of Transformation - Jay Dufrechou, Mari Castle, and Renn Butler

We will discuss a large and important group of spontaneous holotropic experiences that mainstream psychiatry diagnoses and treats as manifestations of serious mental illness. Stan and Christina Grof discovered that if these conditions are correctly understood and properly supported, they have extraordinary therapeutic, transformative, heuristic, and even evolutionary potential. We will review the phenomenology, the triggers, the differential diagnosis, and the therapy for these conditions. We will also briefly discuss the various forms that spiritual emergency can take, including shamanic initiatory crisis, the activation of Kundalini, Abraham Maslow’s “peak experience,” John Perry’s renewal process by descent to the Central Archetype, problems with past life memories, crisis of psychic opening, possession states, and others. We will also review the importance of ethics in psychedelic and holotropic work.

 

Class Seven (Nov 12) - Archetypal and Holotropic Astrology - Renn Butler, Becca Tarnas, Erica Jones, James Moran, Alex Stein, Jonathan Waller, and Art Granoff

We will introduce Richard Tarnas’ approach to archetypal astrology, including his research into the correlations between planetary alignments and the activation of inner material in sessions of psychedelic therapy and breathwork. We will then review the most important world transits activated in the collective psyche from 1960 to the present time.

 

Class Eight (Nov 19) - The Cosmic Game 

In the first half of the class, we will explore ways in which the insights from psychedelic and holotropic sessions concerning the fundamental character and motivations of the cosmic creative principle are corroborated in the writings of the world’s great mystical traditions. Based on Grof’s book, The Cosmic Game (1998). We will be honored in the second hour with Rick Tarnas joining us. James Moran and I will ask him about his early work with Stan, the development of archetypal astrology, his current projects, the prevailing world transits, and how archetypal astrology can help to heal the collective psyche of humanity. 

 

Purchase the recording: $350

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