With the word "some" in the title I mean that I donít want to close the field of references, although I think these ones are basic and necessary to Gestaltherapy Theory as I understand it, and as I understand that it springs from the work and life of Fritz Perls and fellows. Surely I speak of somethings that many know. But I donít see much of this in this Forum, or in present days GT. Sometimes, a see even statements saying that spontaneity is something secondary...
*PHENOMENOLOGICAL ACTITUDE*: The privilege of a phenomenological(active) actitude in life and in relationship with client. I mean Phenomenology as Husserl developed it. But I donít think it is necessary to become a theoretical phenomenologist, or a specialist in Husserlís constructs and theories. The main point, as I see it, seems to be an understanding of the phenomenological(active) actitude: the privilege of the level of consciousness (awareness) that is before any level of reflection or theorisation, pre-reflexive and pre-conceptual. Nothing against reflection and theory in its proper place, but not in the substantial practice of GT. Fundamental seems to be the recognizing of the other, the client, in its difference as a phenomenological being also and the importance, and his right, to stay also in a phenomenological actitude, privileging his own pre-reflexive and pre-conceptual level of consciouness (awareness) in the living of the important issues of his existential actuality. Comprehension is the living of oneself experience, empathy, or, as Buber said, "encounter" is the meeting of the experiences.
EXISTENTIALISM: There are many existentialisms. And everyone has of course the right to embrace the one which prefers. I see very deep and fundamental roots of Gestaltherapy in F. Nietzsche Philosophy of Life. I know that it is still a problem to speak of F. Nietzsche... He is polemic, and there are lots of lies about him. He was not antisemitic at all and his philosophy has absolutely nothing to do with totalitarism, like nazism. It is true neverthless that he made acid criticism to religious perspective and a lot of cultural criticism... Anyway, Nietzsche is quoted by Buber, and Buber is sometime said to be a Nietzschean. Nietzscheís recovering of the worth of the body, of the senses and of awareness in our Civilization seems to be fundamental to GT. His perspectives of a positive value of this life, although it contains suffering and finitude, his radical perspective of affirmation of life as we live it, even when it is speciffically suffering and finitude, is fundamental, it seems, to GT. He stated the worth of artistic functioning over the rational abstract one and the absolute value of life as a creative process. I donít want to push this in anybodyís mind. I just think that it is very obvious the influence of F. Nietzsche in the perspectives and conceptions of GT. And it is very obvious the fear even in GT to contact his conceptions. OK! If one donít agree, so reject it. But I donít see this either. No agreement, no rejection, no contact. I think we can learn with what this means.
*DIALOGIC PHILOSOPHY OF RELATIONSHIP*: The interhuman encouter part of Buberís Philosophy, although a very important one, not always adequately regarded in now days GT Theory, is just part of it. I like his idea that it is the assuming and affirmation of the concretude of existence that allows ourselves to get free of the world of the "things". This allows the ephemerous and intense moments of I-Thou which create and re-create life in its strengh. To avoid the turmoil of the concretude of existence, is to prevent the possibility of the I-Thou, to reinforce the mechanicisms of thingness which flow to absolute fatality. From this Buber says, "Indeed fatal is trust fatality!" GT, I think, belives in assuming and affirming the concretude of existence as we live it, and thus revolve fatality.
*FRITZ PERLS GESTALTHERAPY SINTHESIS*: Fritz deserve respect... Not only the simple respect, but also the respect of a time able to think him his life and work, criticize him and recognize his limits and importance. I think Fritz is important not exactly for his theories, but for his actions and work. Our time couldnít yet make a firm and respectfull criticism to him. Easily nowdays assumed gestaltherapist prefere the difamation of him... Just regretfull... The sinthesis he made made a revolution in psychotherapy and helped revolutions in our Civilization. I think that the best fruits of his work in psychotherapy are still to come. One of them is a more consistent theory of GT. One that might regard the tree of the old theories of Fritz, shake mightly this tree, eat the good fruits laid down, reject the other ones and open space for new ones. Of course there are some other important references. But for now thatís all.