The Amplification Effect, No. 9

An invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

A group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

Amplification is a kind of “natural thinking,” proceeding by way of analogy, parallel and imaginative elaboration. In this sense, it may also be seen as a depth psychological approach to scholarship based on what is claimed to be the natural functioning of the mind, which is not linear and orderly.

https://www.encyclopedia.com/psychology/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/amplification-analytical-psychology

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #9 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A posted/no trespassing sign.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):


Links to Works Generated:

TBD

The Amplification Effect, No. 8

An invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

A group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #8 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A pot of chicken soup.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):


Links to Works Generated:

TBD

The Amplification Effect, No. 7

An invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

A group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

Carl Jung championed approaching unconscious symbolic material with an ‘as-if’ attitude. Jung taught that meaning may be circumscribed, but not described.

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #7 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A solitary beach.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):


Links to Works Generated:

Longing for the Wrack Line, by Richard Reeve

The Amplification Effect, No. 6

An invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

A group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

Carl Jung championed approaching unconscious symbolic material with an ‘as-if’ attitude. Jung taught that meaning may be circumscribed, but not described.

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #6 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A stone wall.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):


Links to Works Generated:

The Four Sisters, by Richard Reeve

The Amplification Effect, No. 5

This is an invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

A group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

Regarding the value of amplification of symbolic content, Heba Zaphiriou Zarifi writes:

 “From circle to circle of interconnected nodal points, a web is created, an archetypal pattern intimated, knitting the original meaning to the rediscovered. A field of information is developed, leading toward the centre, which is a manifestation of being. The more that amplifications increase in distinctness and scope, the more closely they circumambulate the centre. Furthermore, these central points tend to self-amplify, forming a “nucleus for an aggregation of synonyms and antonyms”, as pairs of opposites needing to be united. There, meaning is unwrapped, engulfing all the parts into a cohesive structure of completeness, bringing us to a new psychological standpoint, with the symbol now in relation to ego consciousness. Out of the necessity of chaos a sequential and rhythmic order unfolds creatively, bridging the immanent with the transcendent. The alchemist would claim that meaning is hidden in the crevasses of matter, and that amplificatio is a way of releasing the spirit embedded within.”

Amplification, by Zafifi

Carl Jung championed approaching unconscious symbolic material with an ‘as-if’ attitude. Jung taught that meaning may be circumscribed, but not described.

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #5 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A milking barn.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):


Links to Works Generated:

Dusk Comes Early in Winter, by Richard Reeve

The Amplification Effect, No. 4

This is an invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

A group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

Regarding the value of amplification of symbolic content, CG Jung writes:

 “An archetypal content expresses itself, first and foremost, in metaphors. If such a content should speak of the sun and identify with it the lion, the king, the hoard of gold guarded by the dragon, or the power that makes for the life and health of man, it is neither the one thing nor the other, but the unknown third thing that finds more or less adequate expression in all these similes, yet– to the perpetual vexation of the intellect– remains unknown and not to be fitted into a formula.”

Jung, CW, V. 9i, p. 267

Jung also championed approaching unconscious symbolic material with an ‘as-if’ attitude. Jung taught that meaning may be circumscribed, but not described.

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #4 Amplification Effect Symbol:

An abandoned house.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):


Links to Works Generated:

Abandonments Below 0°F, by Richard Reeve

The Amplification Effect, No. 3

This is an invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

A group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

Regarding the value of amplification of symbolic content, CG Jung writes:

 “An archetypal content expresses itself, first and foremost, in metaphors. If such a content should speak of the sun and identify with it the lion, the king, the hoard of gold guarded by the dragon, or the power that makes for the life and health of man, it is neither the one thing nor the other, but the unknown third thing that finds more or less adequate expression in all these similes, yet– to the perpetual vexation of the intellect– remains unknown and not to be fitted into a formula.”

Jung, CW, V. 9i, p. 267

Jung also championed approaching unconscious symbolic material with an ‘as-if’ attitude. Jung taught that meaning may be circumscribed, but not described.

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #2 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A white line dots the sky.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):


Links to Works Generated:

Passerby, by Richard Reeve (translated into Italian by almerighi)

The Amplification Effect, No. 2

This is an invitation for artists and writers, creators of any medium, to participate in a group exercise.

The Amplification Effect, a group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice to generate an amplification of that symbol.

Regarding the value of amplification of symbolic content, CG Jung writes:

 “An archetypal content expresses itself, first and foremost, in metaphors. If such a content should speak of the sun and identify with it the lion, the king, the hoard of gold guarded by the dragon, or the power that makes for the life and health of man, it is neither the one thing nor the other, but the unknown third thing that finds more or less adequate expression in all these similes, yet– to the perpetual vexation of the intellect– remains unknown and not to be fitted into a formula.”

Jung, CW, V. 9i, p. 267

Jung also championed approaching unconscious symbolic material with an ‘as-if’ attitude. Jung taught that meaning may be circumscribed, but not described.

The Process

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

(For further information, as well as an example of a completed group response mind map, see the inaugural Amplification Effect)


Week #2 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A sign reading Mind the Gap.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map (updated throughout the exercise):

A sign reading Mind the Gap


Links to Works Generated:

Couples Therapy, by Tanmay Philip at Blog inVERSE

The Amplification Effect

This is an invitation to a group exercise.

By way of explanation, I was struck by a recent post by Sadje on the value of comments. It got me thinking (which can be dangerous), so bear with me.

I’ve enjoyed learning about all the different writing prompt exercises shared on this platform and pondered how I might contribute something that would support, but not simply duplicate, the activity I see thriving.

A Fondness for Group Exercises

I was fortunate to take a class in graduate school called Teaching Across Cultures. Professor Jon Barlow challenged us each week to create group exercises to perform with the entire class. Each week we’d head home with a framework and the following class would be spent performing all the different exercises students created.

Dr. Barlow’s rules for any exercise were simple:

  • Directions needed to be written on one page.
  • Participant safety needed to be assured.
  • The exercise needed to be performed within ten minutes.

Amplification

In Jungian psychology, amplification is a process whereby a symbol gets explored through association within the therapeutic session, often relating to symbolic material present in a dream. It differs from free association where one thing leads to another, and to another, over and over, etc. With amplification, the goal is to circle the symbol or theme with various associations, continually returning to the symbol. The resulting pattern of inquiry, like the petals of a flower, brings the fullness of the symbol to light.

Amplification is also the method Jung used in his writings to expound on symbolic material, drawing upon mythic, historical, cultural, and universal analogies to unconscious material of a collective nature.

What if?

So, what follows is my attempt to create a useful exercise that is not specifically a prompt. The goal is to generate the amplification of a symbol that can be useful to artists and creatives in all mediums. I will provide a focus with symbolic content that emerged from unconscious material, either my own or an acquaintance’s (used with permission!).

The symbolic content explored will adhere to Jungs definition of a symbol:

“For Jung, symbols are language or images that convey, by means of concrete reality, something hidden or unknown. They have a numinous quality only dimly perceived by the conscious mind.”

After 24 hours I will post a mind map image, what has been called an association network, of the results. The psychoanalyst Edward Edinger’s example, shared here, will be a guiding model.

If and when work is created, I will link to it if you let me know where it is posted. There is no deadline for that to happen.

In some ways, the result of the exercise will probably be somewhat like a whiteboard after a group brainstorming activity. My hope is to release The Amplification Effect every Sunday morning. While I anticipate needing to make a few tweaks and adjustments through trial and error, I think it’s focused enough to launch and be useful.


The Amplification Effect, a group exercise performed in the comments.

A symbol is provided, and participants are asked to share at least twice with an amplification of that symbol.

1. Participants self-select.

2. Responses are placed in the comments to this post.

3. Each participant replies with an amplification of the symbol.

4. Each participant replies with an association to another participant’s amplification.

5. Participants are encouraged to repeat steps 3 and 4 as often as they wish.

6. Participants are encouraged to reflect on the group results of the exercise to provide an impetus for future creative work.

Postscript: Consider linking back to this post with any work this exercise generates. Links from this post to any work generated will be shared below.

Week #1 Amplification Effect Symbol:

A ring that is not a ring.

Join us in the comments below!


Group Response Mind Map:

A ring that is not a ring

Links to Works Generated:

Cosmic Wake by Richard Reeve