The relationship between practitioner and client, spiritual director and directee or supervisor and Supervisee takes place in an environment of trust, emotional intimacy and confidentiality. The Christian practitioner/spiritual director carries the responsibility of containing, caring and guiding the client/directee/supervisee with tools and skills, based on solid theory, empathy, love in a spirit of service, led by God’s Spirit. The Relationship Psychodynamics Unit provides an experiential, safe, yet challenging, environment to learn: (i) solid theoretical relational-psychological principles; (ii) the neuro-biology of relationships; (iii) practical and immediately applicable techniques; (iv) techniques for reflecting on personal life experiences in the context of new knowledge; such knowledge is gleaned principally through deep engagement with Ignatian Spirituality and also through engagement with other traditions.

Unit Code: DS9069J

Points: 24.0

Unit Level: Postgraduate Elective

Unit Discipline: Spirituality

Delivery Mode: Online

Proposing College: Jesuit College of Spirituality

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Learning Outcomes


Describe and evaluate the neurobiology of the psychological process involved in the emergence of the self and of non-conscious and conscious behaviour;


Demonstrate an informed and critical understanding of the self through role theory and concepts of ‘true’ and ‘false’ self;


Illustrate and reflect on the following from personal experience: self and relational identity; personal experiential life events that made the person the “I am” of today; as well as personal conversion and spiritual growth;


Explain and evaluate the role that culture, race, gender, ideology and other potentially unconscious perspectives, play in contributing to interpersonal behaviour;


Analyse, compare and evaluate a number of personality theories


Intensive/block 6 Days (2X2X2 at intervals throughout the semester) (6 hour days) Weekly small group sessions (90 minutes each) Independent online reading and reflection.


Type Description Wordcount Weight (%)

2000 word Review of Literature essay

2000 25.0
Oral Presentation

30 minute in class practical demonstration (or a recorded video) of a relational technique taught in class, practitioner reflection and client feedback Equivalent to 2000 words

2000 25.0

3000-word Essay

3000 50.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 30 Sep, 2019

Unit Record last updated: 2019-11-01 09:15:09 +1100