Coinneach Shanks: A Psychotherapist in Dublin, Ireland
Thursday, October 11, 2012
(Bridge over) untroubled water
I decided to remain with water but also look at the structures that accompany it. Here we have piped water and a road going over canal water - and whilst it's not an aqueduct proper, its nonetheless a crossing. Leeson Street also passes over this most symbolic of artifacts. I do like the story of the Devil's Bridges which are most popular in folk tales, especially those of eastern Europe. The Devil builds the bridge as a lure for God and the price he asks is the soul of the first person to cross it. He built it after all, so he is owed something. But he is often tricked himself and seldom gets his due. The passage over the bridge represents a change between two states of being and its narrow passageway forces a choice between salvation and damnation. I'm not suggesting that Leeson Street's many nightclubs are typical choices, nor that they represent damnation, but some folks may disagree! I do recall a dream of being on a railway bridge in India. Hundreds of people had disembarked from a stalled train and the bridge was in danger of giving way. I searched in vain for a person of authority and found one, resplendent in a smart guard's uniform. So clearly my psyche pointed to my need to find an authority - something outside of myself - to resolve a difficult choice. In psychotherapy we often find clients looking for someone else to make a choice for them. But you have to cross the bridge on your own, you have to take yourself with you and and you can't keep returning to make another attempt!