The uses of introspection

Introspection is an important process in the production and regulation of emotions.
Here is some of the contemporary language of introspection:

  1. “The felt sense".
    In the 1970s Eugene Gendlin studied successful psychotherapy and found that those who benefitted from it used an inner body sense that he called “the felt sense". This resulted in his publication of the book Focusing in 1979 and the founding of The Focusing Institute, which trains professionals and holds workshops all over the world. See
    “When we are Focusing, we enter into the body more and more deeply, finding intricate patterns of personal experience. Focusing allows an individual suffering from trauma to be in contact with their bodily felt sense of a traumatic experience as a safe observer, and always at their own pace.” See:
  2. “internal experience".
    In 1992 Peter Levine published Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma and called his method “somatic Experiencing. “Part of the dynamic of trauma is that it cuts us off from our internal experience as a way of protecting our organism from sensations and emotions that could be overwhelming.” (p. 73)
  3. “inner body sensing".
    Also in the 1980s and 1990s, Ron Kurtz and Pat Ogden created a trauma treatment technique that was originally called Hakomi, and now goes by the name Sensorimotor Pscychotherapy. Ogden and others published the basic description of the method in Trauma and the Body (2006). This method calls the felt sense “inner body sensing". There are several web sites devoted to this method. See http:/www/
    Then there is the more directly spiritual use of introspection [Pierre Teilhard de Chardin]:
    “… I took the lamp, and leaving the zone of everyday occupations and relationships where everything seems clear, I went down into my inmost self, to the deep abyss whence I feel dimly that my power of action emanates. But as I moved further and further away from the conventional certainties by which social life is superficially illuminated, I became aware that I was losing contact with myself. At each step of the descent a new person was disclosed within me of whose name I was no longer sure, and who no longer obeyed me. And when I had to stop my exploration because the path faded from beneath my steps, I found a bottomless abyss at my feet, and out of it came – arising from I know not where – the current which I dare to call my life.”