The Intermediate Area of Experience-Transitional Awareness- A Winnicottian View
By Rudolph Bauer, Ph.D., Diplomate in Clinical Psychology, A.B.P.P.
Rudolph Bauer, Ph.D. Author, Liliana Argento, Editor
Winnicott’s understanding and implementation of what he called transitional space (or the intermediate area of experience or even, at times, potential space) opens for many psychotherapists the non conceptual dimension in both psychotherapy and in meditative awareness practices. Winnicott was a pediatrician and a psychoanalyst who was interested in the relational development of human beings, especially their ongoing sense of continuity between themselves and others, and within their own sense of self. He came to understand that a person’s access to the transitional dimension of their experience, the non conceptual, assisted the person in accomplishing stability of self and a sense of interior base. This access allowed change to take place within their own self and within their relationships. Access to this intermediate area gives a person a place to be, wherein they could focus on the functions of the mind that require reorganization, and moreover having this sense facilitates the continuity of the sense of self within the coming and going, the appearing and disappearing of a significant person who helped sustain their sense of self. Winnicott’s understanding of transitional space, potential space and intermediate area, also illuminates the various forms of meditative practices.