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Sacred Science Circe Newsletter #2 February 2018


February 2018


The Sacred Science Circle www.sacredsciencecircle.org gathers a sacred circle of individuals and groups that honor the “fires” of transformation implicit in all scientific, scholarly, and artistic endeavors. Our mission is to further that profound route to knowing, wisdom and enrichment of being that the confluence of science and the Sacred can bring to us and to our modern world. In pursuing sacred science, the Sacred Science Circle and our partner institution, the Alef Trust, aspire to transform both ourselves and the world.


The Sacred Science Circle e-Archive includes research resources on Art-based Research, Confucian Hermeneutics, Inclusive Psychology, Intuitive Inquiry, Sacred Wisdoms and Transpersonal Psychology.


In service to the Sacred,

Rosemarie Anderson & Les Lancaster, Sacred Science Circle, Co-Directors




Research Updates

Research Ethics in Humanistic and Transpersonal Research by Hennie Geldenhuys

Truth-speaking as Heroism by Jacqueline Linder


Conferences & Events

11th Annual Conference, Society for Humanistic Psychology, Liberation Through Wisdom & Love, Boulder, CO, USA, March   22-25, 2018

Institute of Transpersonal Psychology Gala Fundraiser, April 7, 2018

Division 32, American Psychological Convention 2018, Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Founding Transpersonal Psychology, San Francisco, CA USA, August 9-12, 2018

Association for Transpersonal Psychology, The Future of Transpersonal Psychology: Integrating Science, Philosophy, Art, & Embodied Spirituality, San Francisco, CA, USA, August 13-16, 2018

19th European Transpersonal Association (EUROTAS) Conference, Tools for Evolution: Knowledge & Practices That Make Us Real, Saint Petersburg, Russia, September 19-23, 2018






By  Hennie Geldenhuys



Even done with honorable intent, research brings potential risks for participants. Some of these risks are obvious, such as breach of confidentiality or activating adverse emotional triggers. Others are unpredictable and on levels we may not quite understand, especially in the relatively young field of transpersonal studies in which deep and existential participation is often involved.

Transpersonal research methodology often includes more integrated and enmeshed relationships between qualitative researchers and their research participants, complex research protocols, and the potential psychological effects of the research on the participant. Therefore, the boundaries between data collection, therapy, and experience, may become blurred. Transpersonal and spiritual research is also more likely to directly influence the participant in ways that may require specialized clinical skills in addition to research skills.

Ethical principles of research involving human participants are coded into guidelines, such as the ethics codes of the American Psychological Association (APA) and British Psychological Society (BPS), Declaration of Helsinki, the Belmont Report, and the ICH Good Clinical Practice (GCP). Research Ethics Committees (REC) and Institutional Review Boards (IRB) play a pivotal role as advocates for the rights, safety, and well-being of research participants and must approve and monitor all research.

Do the guidelines accommodate transpersonal and humanistic research? Are researchers adequately informed and prepared for the complexities? Do transpersonal research proposals adequately and proactively address risk and outcome? Are REC and IRB members well enough versed in this distinctive field to fulfil their mandate?

Personally, I think there is still much to do here. As we continue to learn how science can engage with the sacred and the spiritual and the transpersonal, we also need to develop contextual understandings, guidelines, and safeguards for those most cherished in what we do: our participants.

Hennie Geldenhuys is a medical doctor, transpersonal coach, and trainer in South Africa. For more: email [email protected] or visit www.innerheal.co.za



By Jacqueline Linder

Judith Herman in Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence – From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror wrote: “The ordinary response to atrocities is to banish them from consciousness. Certain violations of the social compact are too terrible to utter aloud: this is the meaning of the word unspeakable.” As a psychologist specializing in complex trauma including childhood sexual abuse, domestic violence, and human trafficking, I bear private witness to the unspeakable every day. However, what is most striking to me is not their suffering, but their heroism.

Zeno, Blau, and Zimbardo identified 12 heroic subtypes: 1) Risk heroes who exceed the call of duty; 2) Civil heroes who risk themselves to save others; 3) Religious figures who embody high spiritual principles; 4) Politico-religious figures who are exemplars of public service; 5) Martyrs who endanger themselves in service to a cause; 6) Political or military leaders who guide a nation in difficult times; 7) Adventurers who explore the geographic unknown; 8) Scientific heroes who explore unknown areas of science; 9) Good Samaritans who help others in need;10) Underdogs who succeed despite adverse conditions; 11) Bureaucracy heroes who hold to principles despite pressure to conform; and 12) Whistle-blowers who report illegal or unethical activities in an organization.

In addition to the subtypes above, I would add Truth-speaker as a 13th heroic subtype, characterized by a trauma survivor’s act of shattering the compact of silence and voicing what is unspeakable within a society. This subtype has transpersonal elements because truth-speaking involves moving beyond personal fear and ultimately healing the collective. Because hurt people often go on to hurt others, collective wellness requires that society publicly witness and take responsibility for its own darkness. Somebody must find the courage to tell.

In 2017, the explosion of sexual abuse and harassment disclosures in North America’s entertainment, business, and political industries shattered the traditional compact of silence around sexual issues. What started with the tentative whispers of a handful of Truth-speakers has become a social revolution.

Jacqueline Linder, Ph. D. is a trauma psychologist and Director of City University’s Master of Counselling Program in Edmonton, AB, Canada. To learn more about Jacqui’s work, contact her via email: [email protected].





 11th Annual Conference


March 22-25, 2018


Naropa University

Boulder, Colorado, USA


Humanistic Psychology, Social Justice & Contemplative Practice

See conference website for details: www.shpconference.com/




Institute of Transpersonal Psychology Foundation Gala Fundraiser

The ITP Foundation, an independent non-profit corporation, will host a gala fundraiser to support transpersonal and spiritual research studies and projects on April 7, 2018. For details, see http://conta.cc/2F4QzZ4






American Psychological Association Convention 2018

August 9-12, 2018

San Francisco, CA, USA


Events celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Transpersonal Psychology will be hosted by APA Division 32, The Society for Humanistic Psychology, at the APA Convention 2018 in San Francisco. Division 32 convention program and hospitality suite program details will be available in April 2018 at www.sacredsciencecircle.org/news_events/.


Celebrating the 50th Anniversary




August 13-16, 2018

California Institute of Integral Studies

San Francisco, CA, USA


See conference website for details: www.atp2018conference.com



19th European Transpersonal Association (EUROTAS) Conference




 September 19-23, 2018

Saint Petersburg, Russia

 See conference website for details: http://eurotas2018.com/en/



Celebrating the 50th Anniversary in Journal Publications


The following two journals will publish special issues or issues dedicated to the 50th celebration of the founding of Transpersonal Psychology:


 The Humanistic Psychologist, Special Issue edited by Rosemarie Anderson

The Journal of Transpersonal Psychology, edited by Marcie Boucouvalas



The Fourth Transpersonal Research Colloquium (TRC) 2019 will be held in Paris following the EUROTAS Conference there in late September 2019. Details to follow at www.transpersonalresearchnetwork.com.

Abstracts of presentations at the TRC 2015 Milan, TRC 2016 London, and TRC Prague are available at www.transpersonalresearchnetwork.com/trc/.

 TRC Organizers

Rosemarie Anderson, Giovanna Calabrese, Regina U. Hess, Les Lancaster, & Pier Luigi Lattuada




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 Past and current newsletters are also available on the website at www.sacredsciencecircle.org/newsletter/

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