Cunningham, Joyce Camuyrano
OUTER SILENCE AND INNER IMAGE
Journal of Sandplay Therapy, Volume 5, Number 2, 1996
KEY WORDS: inner other, silence, inner image, sandplay therapy, symbol, 1995, ego-consciousness, unconscious, silence, Hermes, reflection, liminal, boundary, gate, underworld, crossings, encounter, eye-to-eye, unexpected encounter, sand other, inner other, seer, seen, silent other, sandplayer-ego.
ABSTRACT: “Outer Silence and Inner Image” is a reflection on silence and vision stimulated by the 1995 STA Conference called “The Silent Voice of the Soul”. The author describes the sandplay therapist as listening to the silent voice of the soul with her eyes. She calls on Hermes who presides over the “threshold which emerges when ego-consciousness and the unconscious meet at sand level,” and she suggests that the tray itself may become the symbolic gate to the underworld. She describes the unexpected encounter with the silent inner other when eyes or faces appear in the sand and “we see and we are seen in a mutual gazing.” This numinous experience can transform both the seer and the seen.