From 'Attention' to 'Faith': A Freud-Bion Dialectic

- Certificate Course with 12,5 hrs of post-graduate/ CE credits in psychoanalytic education; no pre-requisites

with Stefanie Teitelbaum, LCSW, NPsyA

When: Saturdays, 6/27, 7/11, 7/18, 7/25, 8/1 - @ 9:45 am - 12:20 pm

Where: 99 University Place, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10003

OR VIRTUALLY (with minimal technical requirements for in real time participation and/ or via use of video-taped sessions)

Tuition: $450/ 10-week course/ 5 double-sessions. Ask for our need-based scholarships and payment arrangements (call the administrator at 646-522-1056).


“Freud … rather crudely referred to as “free-floating attention” a mode of being which is radically open to the evolving emotional truth of the moment. Bion called this intuitive mode of cognition “faith” and graphically portrayed vicissitudes in its development.” (Michael Eigen, 1985)

A simple word in common usage, Freud’s “attention” bubbles up untreated from the bedrock of psychoanalytic thinking.  This course will explore Bion’s revolutionary refinement of Freud’s basic element to his use of the word ‘faith’.  Students will use clinical material as experiential illustrations of the readings, and group role play will be encouraged.

Learning Objectives:

After the course, students will be able to:

1 – Compare Freud’s ideas about memory with Bion’s ideas on evolution.

2 – Demonstrate “free-floating attention” and “faith” modes in role-play.

3 – Discuss the experiences of role play as they relate to the readings.

Primary Readings:

Freud, S. (1911). Formulations on the Two Principles of Mental Functioning.

Bion, W. (1967). Notes on Memory and Desire.

Bion, W. (1970). Attention and Interpretation: A Scientific Approach to Insight in Psycho-Analysis and Groups.

Recommended References:

Freud, S. (1912). Recommendations to Physicians Practicing Psycho-Analysis.

Freud, S. (1914). Remembering, Repeating and Working-Through (Further Recommendations on the Technique of Psycho-Analysis II).

Bion, W. (1977). The Grid.


Class 1: Freud’s The Two Principles of Mental Functioning

Class 2: Freud’s Two Principles, Cont’d

Looking at The Two Principles in Bion’s Grid

Class 3: Bion’s Attention and Interpretation

There are references to the Two Principles, Memory and Desire, and Thoughts about Faith.

Ch. 1 – Introduction, pp.1-5

Ch. 2 – Medicine as a model, pp.6-25

Ch. 3 – Reality Sensuous and Psychic, pp.26-40

Class 4: Notes on Memory and Desire

Attention and Interpretation Cont’d.

Ch. 4 – Opacity of Memory and Desire, pp.41-54Ch. 5 – Theories, pp.55-61

Ch. 6 – Mystic and the Group, pp.62-71

Ch. 7 – Container and Contained, pp.72-81

Class 5: Bion's Attention and Interpretation, Cont’d

Within, Expanding and Beyond the Two Principles

Ch. 8 – Vertices: Evolution, pp.82- 86         

Ch. 9 – Ultimate Reality, pp.87-91

Ch. 10 – Visual Images and Invariants, pp.92-96

Ch. 11 – Lies and the Thinker, pp.97-105

Ch. 12 – Container and Contained Transformed, pp.106, 124

Ch. 13 – Prelude to or Substitute for Achievement, pp.125-129

For Registration Form, click HERE.

For more information, please contact ORI administrator Dr. Inna Rozentsvit at 646-522-1056 or write to admin@orinyc.org.

Bio of the Course Instructor:  

Stefanie Teitelbaum, LCSW, NPsyA, B. Music - is the Supervisor, Training Analyst, Faculty of NPAP and IEA;  Dean of Students, IEA;  Instructor, ORI. She is the former staff psychotherapist at the Lower East Side Service Center’s Drug-Free Outpatient Program.   Stefanie Teitelbaum is in private psychoanalytic practice in New York City. Contact info:  212 255-3284; 917 279-3414; stef.teitelbaum@gmail.com.

READ more about BION HERE

Inquire (by writing to administrator at admin@orinyc.org) about other two courses on Bion's work, which are available on film:

Reading Wilfred Bion: Theory, Function and Clinical Practice


Second Thoughts: A Second Trimester of Reading Wilfred Bion

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