What is Sand play therapy?
SandPlay therapy is a creative form of expressive therapy, based on Jungian Psychology, that uses a sandbox and a large collection of miniatures that enables exploration of the deeper layers of your psyche. By constructing a series of “sand pictures,” you engage in self-discovery, identify conflicts, and find solutions to start your healing process. SandPlay therapy is beneficial for adults as well as children.
SandPlay therapy establishes a safe and protected space, where the complexities of the inner world are explored and integrated into the psyche- the collective unconscious, for emotional healing. Working in the sand can open the door to the unconscious world. It creates a visual representation of the psyche’s contents and reveals unconscious concerns that are inaccessible in other ways. As materials contained in the unconscious emerges visually and symbolically, it is integrated into a person’s sense of self and can be activated to elicit behavioral and emotional changes.
In SandPlay, a visual image is produced that is the product of both the unconscious mind that selects the figures and the conscious mind that creates the scene in the sand. SandPlay can be seen as a form of active imagination that taps into the essence of language through the transformation of experience into symbols with the use of miniature figures. Emotions are not only expressed, but become concrete. Each figure used may represent an actual person or persons, an idea, a feeling, or situation. SandPlay allows the unconscious to lead, and healing happens from within. The practice has roots in the beginning of clinical psychotherapy.
Carl Jung, the Grandfather of Analytical Psychology, believed that, “deep in the unconscious there is a natural wisdom, given the proper conditions, for the psyche to heal itself through images.”