If human life, as the author argues, is a constant and desperate bid to compensate for our mortality, then the desire to love and to be loved is our greatest imagined panacea against the fact of our death. In modern Western society our problems have changed: now, with our stomachs full, our need to feel we are struggling to survive has become increasingly focussed on a growing dissatisfaction and insecurity in our personal relationships.
Drawing on her 35 years' experience as an individual and group psychotherapist, Mavis Klein here elaborates her original theory of five basic personality types, ten compound types, and fifteen ways in which the basic types interact with each other in our relationships to others. She clearly elucidates the behaviours that disguise our often self-induced pains, and how these pains can be transmuted into our greatest talents and joy.
This book addresses the reality of the world we are so often unwilling to accept: the irrational and violent world of shame, doubt, guilt, fear, love and hate.
REVIEWS & ENDORSEMENTS
This is one of those books which astounds with the depth of knowledge of the writer. It's also very well written, both in terms of being written in an easy to read style, despite the depth of the information, and also because it's very well edited.
Mavis Klein has acquired her knowledge and developed her theories through fifteen years experience as a psychotherapist.
She says the book serves those who have high expectations of life and seek to answer the question Why? about their own experience.
Some of the Whys? it addresses are as follows:
Why am I the way I am?
Why is my partner the way they are?
Why do I find it difficult to relate to certain things my partner does?
Why are we having the problems we are having?
Why do I find it hard to change certain behaviours?
It's been many years since I read a psychology book of this nature. I remember, in the early days of doing so, how powerful it was to find myself or friend or family in the pages of a book. It reduced my sense of being alone, and gave me hope that if these patterns were so established they could be noted in a book, then perhaps someone had also written somewhere about how to change these patterns. If those motivations appeal then this book will help.
The spiritual perspective colours my whole view of life, and finding myself in the pages of the book, also motivates me to want to find the uniqueness in myself. I don't want to be just a series of predictable patterns, I want to allow to flow through me the self that lies beyond these patterns.
Well, it's a humbling experience for me to read a psychology book of after 22 years of self development, and still find myself very much within its pages!
It was both validating, enlightening and also quite depressing to find the dynamic in my relationship portrayed here.
As the author states this is a book which answers Why? There's not a lot of How? in this book.
Having said that, awareness itself is very powerful, so just being aware that you behave in a certain way, or that someone else in relationship to you behaves a certain way, may itself free you up to behave in new ways, or help you in making new decisions about how you interact with your partner.
And, as someone who reads a lot of books that make quite absurd claims for how easily we can change fundamental patterns of behaviour instilled in childhood, it is quite refreshing to read a book that recognises just how difficult this can be.
I haven't read anything that covers these specific areas in this way. This is a book that was well worth writing.
If you want to find out more about the way you tick, or the way someone in your life ticks, I highly recommend this book. It is learned, informative, well written and powerfully perceptive. ~ Katherine T Owen, www.a-spiritual-journey-of-healing.com