Psychosynthesis was originated by Roberto Assagioli, an Italian psychiatrist who rejected the negative perspective presented by Freudian psychoanalysis, with its emphasis on investigating the primitive drives of the unconscious. Like Jung, Assagioli recognised both the impetus for wholeness within individuals and also the deep human need for meaning and purpose, nourished by transpersonal energies such as beauty, truth and love. Whilst Psychosynthesis supports the healing of trauma and childhood wounding, it goes beyond this to help individuals create a life that is in alignment with their deepest purpose, meaning and values.
In a letter to his brother, George, written in 1819, the poet John Keats characterised the world as a “vale of soul-making”, illustrating his commitment to embrace both the joy and pain, the light and shadow of his tragically short life as grist for the mill in enabling him to live up to his destiny. Psychosynthesis is soul-making at work, supporting the conscious and deliberate process of becoming more of who we truly are. It is a profoundly hopeful psychology, holding that our suffering is the source of our healing and growth and embracing a strong emphasis on the practical power of everyday choice and action in the world.