HEALING INTO DEATH
Journal of Sandplay Therapy, Volume 5, Number 2, 1996
KEY WORDS: healing, death, sandplay therapy, clinical example, twin, hero, self, transformation, journey, anger, depression, cancer, dying
ABSTRACT: For Jung, the greatest of mysteries were present in the body. He spoke of the “diamond” body as the development of something eternal and durable in the laboratory of one’s life. Jung knew that the alchemy which he sought was related to similar bodily changes. Dora Kalff has referred to the sand as the body and many published sandplay therapists have referred to sandplay and the body in their writings. This sandplay case deals with the experience of illness and possibility of death within the context of viewing illness as a lesson in life from which a persona can live and heal and grow and also as a lesson in life from which a personal can die and heal an grow. The client was a 44 year-old male who was referred for depression and marital problems. During the sandplay process he is diagnosed with cancer of the pancreas. He did 13 sandtrays. He had a twin brother who had previously die of cancer, as had his younger daughter. The illness itself is the defining opportunity with different physical outcomes possible, but with a more expanded psychological and spiritual definition of healing. Through the depth process of sandplay, aspect of the psyche interrelate and lead to resolution and healing. Using the tool of sandplay therapy as taught by Dora Kalff, Susan’s case demonstrates the holistic healing potential of sandplay.