|Explores how psychoanalysis can nurture and vitalize, rather than only focusing on affliction and neuroses.
Psychoanalysts have traditionally been expert at uncovering what afflicts and damages people, argues Jeffrey B. Rubin, but by focusing on narcissism and perversions, depression and sadism, psychoanalysis has all too often disregarded what nourishes and sustains us. In The Good Life, he demonstrates how psychoanalysis can make a profound contribution to the well-lived life by drawing on a neglected but potent aspect of psychoanalysisits capacity to illuminate a psychology of health as well as illness. Rubin shows that, at its best, psychoanalysis can highlight both the ingredients of love, ethics, creativity, and spirituality, as well as the obstacles to experiencing them. Exploring the good life from this dual perspective provides an indispensable resource for helping us live with greater meaning and vitality.
“…a collection of thoughtful and informative essays that attempt to focus not only on individual psychopathology, but rather, on what nourishes and sustains us as life affirming human beings … it is a small gem.” — Journal of Religion and Health
“The author has picked areas of basic importance to thread through psychoanalysis and spirituality: love, ethics, and creativity. He discusses important research in each, developing lines of thought that lead to personal and intellectual development. As he went along, I found myself saying over and over, 'yes, that's it, that's the way I feelhe's saying it,' as if, in an intellectually sound way, he touches core soul chakras, bringing needed growth experiences alive. This is a healthy, wholesome, and complex book. Reading it is itself therapeutic.“ Michael Eigen, author of Reshaping the Self: Reflections on Renewal through Therapy
“This is a remarkably jargon-free, accessible, thoughtful analysis of the current state of psychotherapy and its inability or unwillingness to help people address social and individual issues by affirming their values, spirituality, and creativity. This sounds like Dr. Phil, but it isn’t. Rubin takes us on a serious journey through the history, failures, and potentials of psychoanalysis” Norman Weiner, State University of New York at Oswego
“Lively, learned, and gracefully, even movingly, written, The Good Life not only offers a provocative and timely challenge to many of the dominant assumptions of the psychoanalytic community but also provides a compelling vision of how we can find meaning and joy in our lives, even in the midst of the fraught and anxious world in which we live.” David Scott Kastan, Old Dominion Foundation Professor in the Humanities, Columbia University
Jeffrey B. Rubin is a psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City and Bedford Hills and is also Faculty and Training Supervisor at Harlem Family Institute. He is the author of the groundbreaking and critically acclaimed Psychotherapy and Buddhism: Toward an Integration and A Psychoanalysis for Our Time: Exploring the Blindness of the Seeing I.