Money is a subject often more taboo than sex, religion or political affiliation. And psychology, for the most part, has been no braver or wiser than other forums in hosting useful dialogs on the topic.
The myriad money complexes clients and therapists both bring to the consulting room reveal many parallels between money and psychology through metaphors such as: inflation, depression, mania, value, allure, obligation, worth, deficit, loss, gain, promise, transference, confidence, failure and trust. Money is the number one reason married couples separate and many families are torn apart by their economic issues, yet money is seldom mentioned in any of our trainings. As we engage with the phenomena of money we will consider its complex roles in identity, self regard, interpersonal relationships, psychopathology and the injuries of class at all points of the economic spectrum. We will try to understand some of the imaginal underpinnings of our contemporary economy as we deeply explore our personal psychologies of money and consider new possibilities. In an attempt to move beyond quantitative concepts we will also discuss the psychological complexes, symbolic meanings, archetypal influences and spiritual significance of money. Aaron Kipnis, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist in Santa Monica, California and has been a core faculty member at Pacifica Graduate Institute for 15 years. Outside the classroom, Aaron speaks widely. He is author of Angry Young Men; What Women and Men Really Want; Gender War, Gender Peace; and Knights Without Armor. His award winning documentary film—Awakening—is about Untouchable women’s economic empowerment in rural India and post-Taliban women in Afghanistan. His forthcoming book, The Midas Complex, is about the deep psychology of money.
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