Articles written by Ken Silverstro Phd


Sorted by date  Results 1 - 25 of 53

  • Projection

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Sep 8, 2022

    Projection is an extremely common psychological process and personal experience. Ironically, it's one experience of which few people are aware. Why is that? That's because it is an unconscious process, a process from our hidden psychology. I'm fond of describing this process using a movie theater analogy. The projection booth represents the unconscious. The movie projector represents the process. When we look at the screen, we see images from the film, our unconscious psychology, projected by...

  • The I Ching or The Book of Changes

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Jul 28, 2022

    In this column, I decided to introduce an ancient Chinese text to emphasize a couple of psychological points -- that the human psyche (our psychology) is present in most of what we do and express and to indicate how unconscious (unaware) we are of these processes. The latter point is important because it indicates the need for each of us to develop our consciousness (awareness) as much as possible. The I Ching is a book of 64 hexagrams, or descriptions, that comment on life. For millennia,...

  • Social complexes

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Jun 16, 2022

    From previous articles, we've become familiar with psychological complexes, however, each was introduced from a personal perspective. Now, let me introduce complexes from a group, collective or social perspective. Recall that complexes are essentially an accumulation of experiences related to a common theme, such as experiences with one's father. For social complexes the development is similar only now, the experiences are related to a social theme. When we consider the many common social...

  • Do, do, do

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Apr 21, 2022

    There are many people who cannot stop doing. They must do, do, do, all the time, at least that's what they believe. This doing, this continual activity, can be understood in several ways. So, let's take a look! By doing something all the time, a person can avoid other aspects of life that might need attention. The children might need attention; the house or apartment might need attention; a parent or family member might need attention. Being in continual motion or doing constant activity can be...

  • Another dream

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Mar 10, 2022

    I plan to present dreams from time-to-time to help us understand the origin and meanings of dreams. All dreams originate in the human psyche (human psychology). There are two major types of dreams: personal and collective dreams. Personal dreams provide the dreamer with insights and meanings about their personal psychology. Collective dreams provide the dreamer with meanings and insights about a social situation. Yes, we can dream dreams that inform us about something other than ourselves! The...

  • Dark matter and psychology

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Jan 27, 2022

    What does dark matter have to do with psychology? Most likely not much but it does enable us to take a new approach to understanding the unconscious (our hidden psychology). Dark matter is everywhere in the universe and makes up a large percentage of physical matter but it cannot be seen. It is considered to be over six times more abundant than the matter we can see, but, again, it does not reflect light. Scientists discovered the existence of dark matter by its affects; that is, its gravitation...

  • The symbol of a dog as a conditioned instinct

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Dec 16, 2021

    What is a dog symbol? For that matter, what is a conditioned instinct? Well, when we look at dreams, most images in dreams are symbols. Symbols are expressions from the human psyche (our psychology and more) that have deep and varied meanings. A dream image of a car, for example, is a symbol with a variety of meanings, such as the way we move through life. Frequently the symbol of a dog in a dream represents a conditioned instinct. To understand this, we must ask: What is a conditioned...

  • Descriptions of depression

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Nov 11, 2021

    Depression is a common affliction. The percentage of people suffering from depression is staggering. Of course, the pandemic contributed to these numbers, but even before the pandemic the numbers were staggering. There are many ways to define depression. I want to use descriptions, not definitions. Depression is experienced as feeling low -- not having much energy for daily events or situations. Sleep tends to be affected, as well as thinking and focus. Depression affects appetite, and a person'...

  • Children, mimicking and adults

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Sep 30, 2021

    When young children play together, they often begin to assume the behaviors and dress styles of their peers. They tell their parents how they want to dress and are adamant about what is acceptable as "in" and what is considered "out." In school, being a member of an "in" clique is critical. Being an outcast is devastating for anyone outside the clique. Being inside, usually means members talk, think, dress, behave and assume attitudes that are similar to each other. They mimic each other....

  • Conscious evolution

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Aug 19, 2021

    What could conscious evolution possibly mean? Well, we know that consciousness is an awareness of people, events, objects and ourselves. We also know that evolution is a natural process that results in species, for example, surviving for a period of time (long or short), and that characteristic traits form for the different species. Usually, species adapt to their surroundings. So, conscious evolution means a changing consciousness that adapts to the surroundings, or lives, of humans, resulting...

  • Psychology and Sexuality

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Jul 8, 2021

    This topic is as broad as it is deep. We could say that everything is, or is related to, sexuality. That's how broad the topic is. We could say that the human psyche (our overall psychology) expresses itself sexually throughout our daily lives. Sexuality, then, is deeply rooted in human nature. This topic is of great importance, so let's begin by stating the obvious: sexuality is a biological instinct that moves us to procreate, but it also is a psychological instinct. Being more frequently...

  • A brief look at dreams

    Ken Silverstro PhD|May 27, 2021

    Why consider dreams important? This is a question that is asked so many times. Most people consider dreams valueless or just a recap of the day's events with some memories. In fact, dreams are remarkably rich in expression and one of the most valuable human resources. Without dreams, people eventually hallucinate and are diagnosed with a psychological disorder. That's frightening! We don't, however, have to worry about that extreme, since we all dream, even if we don't remember our dreams. One...

  • Holism and consciousness

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Apr 15, 2021

    What does holism have to do with psychology? For that matter, what is holism? The old tale about an elephant and several blindfolded people, touching different parts of the elephant while trying to determine what they're touching, comes to mind. One person touches an ear, another a tail and another a foot. Each exclaims what it is they're touching. Each is wrong, because only a small part of the whole – the elephant – is being touched. In fact, we can never understand the whole from any ind...

  • Your psychology and the universe

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Feb 25, 2021

    Recently, I was asked to describe the overall structure of a person's psychology. Often, I describe one element at a time. Seldom do I attempt describe the entire structure. So, I thought it might be fun and interesting, using an analogy, to present the complete structure in this column. Consider the solar system as a representation each person's unique psychology; further, that there are as many solar systems as there are people. The sun, the center of the solar system, has planets orbiting...

  • Only the shadow knows

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Jan 28, 2021

    This old line from a radio show is most appropriate for all of us today. In previous articles, I described the shadow as the opposite of the ego (a person's identity); that is, the opposite of one's personal beliefs about oneself. Although possible, the shadow seldom includes positive values. So, if you believe you are good a person, your shadow is probably just the opposite. Given the events at the Capitol building on Jan. 6th, we can easily see how harmful the shadow can be. For those of us...

  • Holiday goodwill

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Dec 24, 2020

    Since it's the holiday season, I believe it's fitting to describe some psychological traits associated with the season. During this season, people are more open, kinder and giving to others. Even to people they don't know! Why is that? There are many possible answers but let's explore a few from a psychological perspective. First of all, people let their egos (sense of identity and control) relax a bit. This means they are less territorial, less argumentative and less adamant about being right....

  • Separation, meaning, racism and balance

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Nov 26, 2020

    In a recent discussion, some insights became clear about the human psyche (human psychology) and the separation experience due to the pandemic. COVID-19 has forced many of us to experience separation in new and penetrating ways, but it's not new for everyone. Cultures of color in the United States have experienced racism in numerous ways for centuries; separation is usually involved. For example, the Black culture has experienced separation, and therefore racism, as in bathroom use, bus...

  • Authoritarianism

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Oct 22, 2020

    What do you think you're doing? You can't do that! I don't want you to do that! Do what I say! These are all expressions of authoritarianism. Often, these types of expressions are found in some form of relationship. The more personal the relationship, the more likely this type of expression is directed at the other person without any subtlety. The more distant the relationship, the more subtle the wording and manipulation, but the same authoritarianism is conveyed. In all cases, these are...

  • Guilt or guilty

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Sep 24, 2020

    Guilt and feeling guilty are extremely common. Guilt describes a condition or state of being, while feeling guilty describes, well, a feeling. Why do we experience the two and is it important to ask the question? Let me begin by reminding you that there are four basic emotions: fear, anger, happy and sad. So, it seems that guilt is not a basic emotion. In fact, it's not an emotion at all. Although it is a psychological condition with an associated feeling, it is quite different than an emotion....

  • What is this all about?

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Aug 27, 2020

    At the moment, we can ask this question about so many discrepancies in our social lives, but I want to focus on one: people denying the validity of science and scientific findings. Let me begin this way. Centuries ago, Copernicus determined that the earth was not the center of the solar system. The sun was the center. Copernicus was a scientist, using the science of his day to determine his conclusion. Yet, people didn't believe him. The key word here is "believe." His discovery existed over a...

  • Wishful thinking and denial

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Jul 2, 2020

    Wishful thinking has been called magical thinking, fantasy thinking, even idealistic thinking. It has never been called realistic thinking. In other words, it is a form of thought that expresses personal wishes, beliefs and ideals, which a person thinks are real. The bottom line is that people think themselves into a magical reality, one that doesn't coincide with actual reality. Clearly, this form of thought is not healthy because a person is not experiencing the reality of a current or future...

  • Oppression, anger, explosion

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Jun 11, 2020

    Did you ever shake a carbonated bottle of water, or soda pop or something similar? Of course, you have. The pressure inside the bottle builds-up. You can't see it but when you open the lid, the liquid explodes outward in a forceful spray. If you were to keep shaking it without opening the lid, eventually the pressure would be so high that the explosion would still happen. The bottle would break, spraying the liquid and pieces of the bottle in all directions, which is an extremely dangerous...

  • From isolation to personal development

    Ken Silverstro PhD|May 14, 2020

    During this time of sheltering-in-place and isolation, many people are struggling with being alone or even in the same shelter with family members. Isolation is particularly difficult for extraverted people who need external experiences to feel energized. This is less critical for introverted people who need internal experiences to feel energized. Regardless of one's personality type, isolating can introduce new experiences for personal development. Personal development means that we get to...

  • Responsibility during a global crisis

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Apr 16, 2020

    There are many ways to understand responsibility. For example, caring for and not endangering another person, such as caring for someone you love – your spouse, your children or your parents. A month ago, I wrote a column about "the other;" the person who is seen as different. By forming imaginary circles around ourselves or circles that include loved ones and a very close friend or two, we leave everyone else outside our circles. The people outside our circles are considered "the other." We o...

  • Power from internal to external

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Mar 19, 2020

    Power is often experienced in relation to other people, as when a person expresses power over someone else. However, power is also closely associated with control. An example occurs when one spouse controls another spouse's decisions. Although power is often experienced externally, it originates in our psychologies. Our shadows (dark side of the personality) and our egos (identities, values and beliefs) are responsible for expressing external power. Associated with power is a sense of...

Page Down

Rendered 07/19/2024 23:28