Biotransenergetica: a transpersonal psychotherapy. A description of BTE practices from a therapist and client perspective

Calabrese, Giovanna (2014) Biotransenergetica: a transpersonal psychotherapy. A description of BTE practices from a therapist and client perspective. Other thesis, Middlesex University / Metanoia Institute.


In Biotransenergetica (BTE), a transpersonal psychotherapy model developed in the 1980s by Lattuada, the uniqueness of self-experience is pivotal. In the therapeutic process inner experiences and felt sense are essential. These are contained in the concept of Transe. During the psychotherapy session the psychotherapist favors the creation of the Transe, a field, using mindfulness techniques; the psychotherapist and the patient “indwell” together in this experience at a multilevel dimension (physical, emotional, energetic, mental and spiritual) to allow the psychotherapeutic process to happen. The present study was carried out to describe the psychotherapist and the patient lived experience of the Transe. The aim was to describe how this process actually works to the therapeutic effect and could relate to self-development. The study, involving 7 psychotherapists and 13 patients, for a total of 121 clinical sessions, comes within the field of qualitative research, using a heuristic methodology, to provide a conceptual and structural description of BTE practice based on its clinical application. The heuristic method described by Moustakas, has been adapted for this particular clinical setting. As it is described by the patients and the psychotherapists, the Transe, allows integration of the five levels, physical, emotional, mental, energetic and spiritual, to occur. At the same time a process of dis-identification from the mental and emotional contents might happen. Patients reported that the therapeutic process during the Transe would lead to a subjective state of well being, improving awareness about inner mechanisms, both on the mental and the emotional levels. The patients reported also an improved ability of self listening and also listening to others’ emotion, leading to more satisfying relationships. The Transe as a non ordinary state of consciousness will be discussed comparing it with other mindfulness practices applied in different therapeutic contexts, both for psychological support and for medical problems. Moreover, I will consider the Transe from the evidences coming from neuroscience studies about the effect of mindfulness practices on brain structure and functions. Results will also be discussed from BTE theoretical framework, contrasting BTE structural boundaries with other psychotherapy approaches, mainly Bioenergetic and Gestalt. A discussion about the heuristic method used, as a valid tool to study non ordinary state of consciousness in transpersonal psychotherapy research, will be also provided.

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