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Philosophy of Life: J. L. Moreno’s Revolutionary Philosophical Underpinnings of Psychodrama, and Group Psychotherapy

This paper is a short exposition of the philosophical underpinnings of psychodrama and group psychotherapy, and the inherent difficulties in determining them. The written materials that explain the underlying philosophy of psychodrama are, generally, uncritical, in a philosophical sense, of Moreno’s ideas. There is little discussion and no apparent general recognition of where these written materials fit within larger philosophical traditions. Arguments as to which philosophical frameworks could be said underlie psychodrama are presented. This paper proposes that the philosophical underpinnings of psychodrama are still revolutionary, and inadequately explicated. Aspects of the narrative journey the author went through while writing this paper are included.

The Social Trichotomy

It is of heuristic value to differentiate the social universe into three tendencies or dimensions, the external society, the sociometric matrix and the social reality. By external society I mean all tangible and visible groupings, large or small, formal or informal, of which human society consists. By the sociometric matrix I mean all sociometric structures invisible to the macroscopic eye but which become visible through the sociometric process of analysis. By social reality I mean the dynamic synthesis and interpenetration of the two. It is obvious that neither the matrix nor the external are real or can exist by themselves, one is a function of the other. As dialectic opposites they must merge in some fashion in order to produce the actual process of social living.



The most radical right wing deists and the most radical left wing agnostics and atheists have attributed various positive and negative qualities to the Supreme Universal Intelligence, and God has been both affirmed and denied in all the categories of these qualities, of being, of essence, of substance, of personality, of ruler, of all might, of all goodness, of all wisdom, of holiness, of righteousness, as spirit of progress and revolution. Each of these attributes, or several of them at a time, have been made the meat and substance of various philosophies and religions, and it has been the pride of various doctrines in their systems to accept or annihilate each and all of these attributes of the Godhead. But we wonder why all the writings of men, both affirmative and negative, have neglected almost completely His attribute of Creator.

Concretisation - that peculiar thing done in psychodrama

Concretisation gives size and form to concepts, feelings and situations. Internal experiences are given symbolic form by choosing an object to represent a feeling, relationship or situation and placing it on the stage, or drawing it on paper.