Client Centered therapy – Personality development

Carl Rogers, a pioneer in the field of a client centered therapy for personality development, has used the term ‘organism’ for the individual. Reading between the lines, it seems that this organism is no more than the body mind intellect senses quartet. Limited to this framework, his findings and insights may have a lot to offer. But the crux of the problems arises when Rogers states that, as a part of the process of development of the self actualization manifests through differentiation which gradually evolves into a concept of self feeding itself on positive regard. We feel that this kind of theory is relevant largely for mentally abnormal, sub-normal or dilapidated persons in the clinical sense either temporarily or for prolonged spells. This clinical line of demarcation probably assumes that those who do not themselves feel the personal help, or if others do not think that they need such help, they are normal and mentally healthy. Apparently client centered therapy is not then directed towards this assumed healthy group which constitutes the vast majority of humanity. But when the theory and actualization via differentiation, self regard etc., is extended in real life to this healthy group we seem to quickly run all sorts of difficulties. For, years of regular observation of organizational phenomena suggests to us that it is this process of actualization, predominantly via differentiation and its correlates which is at the root of organizational conflict, brittle teamwork fleeting collaboration and cooperation and so on. It fact, the practice of such a theory seems to lead to a deterioration in the health of the healthy group.

Indian thought categorically tells us that this large majority of humans who are clinically grouped as healthy are practically not so. They all need help whether this is so perceived by themselves or others or not. Indian psycho-philosophy therefore offers a therapy all of us in universal, absolute terms, centering on the concept of Self which is altogether more virile, more enriching and super ordinate than what Rogers and others have been able to develop. The keynote of this therapy is the opposite of the differentiation amongst selves. It is the process of discovering unity among all selves and stabilizing oneself in that consciousness. If one goes by the theory of gurus and that of samskaras, none of us really to strive for differentiation. It is an inherent, inbuilt endemic. The real imperative in human development is to consciously strive for the common, integral unified ground amongst ourselves so that the all too frequent rough and sharp edges of differentiation are polished off for the sake of the common good. It is the operationalization of such theory which can effectively resolve conflicts and prolong teamwork in the long run. In Indian thought, the real integration or re-integration of personality for persons in the healthy group too is impossible without resolutely working towards the discovery of the same true Self amongst all with whom they interact. The job at hand is not just to enhance creative thinking but to enhance creative experience too.

Since we are right now dwelling on this vital point, we may as well anticipate the guna theory. Geeta describe the sattwic, rajasic and tamasic understanding of performers. The sattwic worker sees the one Imperishable. Being in all existences, the one indivisible whole in all these divisions. The rajasic worker sees the multiplicity of beings in different existences only in their separateness and variety of operations. And the tamasic worker sees things in a small and narrow way, with no eye for the real. Thus, it is clear that differentiation as the basis for individual identity is the reflection of rajasic or tamastic guna in Indian psychology. This cannot be a sufficient or enduring foundation for individuals, group or organizational effectiveness. Education in and inculcation of sattwic substance attributes can alone prove to be the true anchor.

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