ABSTRACT

This chapter discusses two traumatic events that occurred in the life of one of the analytical groups. Such events revive past traumas that occurred in the lives of the participants and the group’s conductor alike. The first traumatic event was chronic illness during the past four years. This illness is manifested by acute, continuous pain, which is sometimes unbearable, and is not affected by painkillers. The term “event” is relevant both externally and internally. Bion uses the term “catastrophic change” in order to distinguish a situation in which a change is experienced as frightening and shaking, but eventually brings about growth and creative development. The second phenomenon has to do with the Israeli social unconscious. The chapter refers to the automatic process by which victims become heroes. The halo of heroism blocks out the magnitude of the catastrophe. Bion regards the Sphinx as the metaphor for a riddle whose solution lies hidden deep in the social unconscious.