The irrelevance of much criticism of SBNR can be gauged by looking at the many psychologies of the 20th century — those of Jung, Maslow, Rogers, Erickson, Assagioli, Grof and so forth — which are relevant to it. They operated as reconciliations of left and right brain in an instinctive truthfulness that embodies both. They focused on lifting patients out of their bizarrely neurotic social environments, making space in people for themselves, sometimes then transforming the environments too.
They continue to be of huge importance to wide swathes of the public even as they are usually accorded very little status in the teaching of psychology itself, which is currently showing signs of an ideocracy greater even than the one it promulgated in the mid-20th century.
Carl Jung is both “passé” and also probably more popular than ever, with new neurological rigour on his side. Milton Erickson conferences attract thousands of practitioners and his methods have cured hundreds of thousands — yet his name appears in no mainstream psychology text’s index, to my knowledge.
Information becomes available. There appears to be no stopping the wave(s). It’s quite clear that with some of the above names — Carl Rogers for instance — no transpersonal reason exists to bar them from the academy, whereas every evidential reason exists to admit them. They are barred because what they say “should not be said”. But this bar somehow doesn’t really hold them.
There has rarely been truly strong “official” support for SBNR but nothing has stopped its growth.
Addendum — Quiz Answer!
Full marks to mirjhar! And anyone else who guessed the speaker was indeed Richard Dawkins. I deployed that quote simply to show that the man is thinking mythically; as Clare said, “emphasising the majesty” of what he was saying. Mythic thinking and imaging concerns the big questions and stories that touch meaningful places within us. In this case, as so often, Dawkins’ point of view is very close to the Christian one (he’s not far off Ecclesiastes, “a time to be born and a time to die” etc.) Not all scientists are so unaware of their mythicising — Einstein springs to mind — but whether they are aware or not, they all do it. Human beings must.