by Ashok Bedi, MD & Robert BJ Bakala, PhD
In the spring of 2020, America and the world were overwhelmed by the Covid-19 pandemic and the global racial justice protests. This inspired the co-authors Ashok Bedi, a psychiatrist and a Jungian psychoanalyst, and Robert BJ Jakala, a psychologist, a Jungian therapist, and an avid photographer, to compose a daily blog for 100 days to chronicle their soul response to staying centered in the eye of this storm.
When dealing with a personal or a collective crisis or trauma, the rational mind fails to be a guide. When overwhelmed, a deeper level of archetypal consciousness is activated from the depths of the psyche to help navigate the storm. This is over 2 million years of ancestral wisdom encoded in the limbic system that crystalizes as images with a symbolic instruction as a GPS to help navigate the storm.
The authors’ method captures the archetypal response of the personal and collective psyche. BJ would choose a photograph daily with his initial response to the collective crisis. Ashok would amplify the symbolic meaning of this image from an archetypal lens. Together, they strung a talismanic necklace to guide us into the center of the storm. Join them in celebrating the power of the unconscious to help us survive and master the storm.
Robert “BJ” Jakala, PhD is a Depth Psychologist, Educator, Writer, and Photographer. He is a graduate of Pacifica Graduate Institute in Carpinteria, CA. He is also a Registered Nurse who worked at Linda and Stewart Neuropsychiatric Hospital for thirty-three years. He was a Nursing Supervisor for seventeen years and lead Group Psychotherapy on the Adult Service for ten years. He has taught the First Year Nurse Residents Self-Care and Stress Management at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center for over twelve years. He is the former Assistant Director of the Men’s Center of Los Angeles for 5 years. He retired from thirty years of Private Practice in Woodland Hills, CA in November. 2017.
Dr. Jakala promotes the idea of transformation and change as a function of image and language in patients, as well as clinicians. He teaches the rewards of deep listening to the images created by language and the value of an image’s experience before words emerge. He aligns with Carl Jung’s ideas regarding a universal consciousness that is often hidden beneath the surface of our ego consciousness. He encourages clinicians to appreciate the collective in order to assist clients become more of themselves.
Ashok Bedi, M.D. is a Jungian psychoanalyst and a board-certified psychiatrist. He is a member of the Royal College of psychiatrists of Great Britain, a diplomat in Psychological Medicine at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of England, a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He is a Clinical Professor in Psychiatry at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee and a training analyst at the Carl G. Jung Institute of Chicago. His books include The Spiritual Paradox of Addiction, Crossing the Healing Zone , Awaken the Slumbering Goddess: The Latent Code of the Hindu Goddess Archetypes, Retire Your Family Karma: Decode Your Family Pattern and Find Your Soul Path and Path to the Soul. He is the liaison for the IAAP for developing Jungian training programs in India and travels annually to India to teach, train the consult with the Jungian Developing groups at several centers in India including Ahmedabad and Mumbai. He leads the annual “A Jungian Encounter with the Soul of India” study group to several centers in India under the auspices of the New York Jung Foundation. His publications and upcoming programs may be previewed at pathtotheosul.com