The #EmergingProud campaign is enormously grateful to Paris Williams, PHD for giving us permission to use the title of his infamous book ‘Rethinking Madness’ for the Open Space topic for our HUGE launch event on the 12th May; set to take place simultaneously in 8 countries in order to catalyse grassroots initiatives to better support people going through spiritual emergence.
Paris will be talking with me about his personal experience of spiritual emergency this week; he is a beautiful example of the transformative potential of this process if it’s not pathologised as mental illness.
Here’s a bit about Paris:
In the midst of a successful career as a hang gliding instructor and competition pilot (winning a World Champion title and multiple U.S. National Champion titles), Paris Williams suddenly found himself plunged into a profound struggle with experiences that would have likely resulted in the diagnosis of a psychotic disorder.
Fortunately, he managed to avoid becoming entangled within the psychiatric system, and he instead embarked upon a journey of healing and self discovery, attempting to resolve his own personal crisis while aspiring to support others going through similar crises. He has since spent many years exploring both Eastern and Western understandings of mind and consciousness, studying intensive mindfulness meditation, working in numerous settings supporting people struggling with challenging and extreme experiences, and conducting a series of pioneering research studies at Saybrook University on recovery from “schizophrenia” and other psychotic disorders.
He is licensed as a clinical psychologist, specializing in humanistic, existential, transpersonal and somatic perspectives, and he has recently published a book based upon his work, Rethinking Madness, which has received wide acclaim. Native to the U.S., Paris has recently moved to New Zealand, where he works as a psychologist in private practice, continues to write and still occasionally takes to the sky.
Paris can be reached at www.RethinkingMadness.com, and his interview for #EmergingProud will feature on the Blog in the coming week; make sure you sign up and be sure not to miss it!