Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear Colleagues,

The freedom of the human being, which transcends all biographical circumstances, is a crucial element in the existential-analytical approach. We understand the human being in the sense of existential philosophy as a “being in the process of becoming”. Dealing with all kind of adversities and giving life a meaningful orientation – in spite of everything – also describes where we are heading with our clients and patients.

“Biography” has been the title of an existential analysis congress before, in 1992. The topic is a key issue in counselling, therapy, spiritual guidance, pedagogy and leadership. In the past years, we have constantly enhanced our approach and thus have come a long way. More than 30 years later, though, it has once again become important for us to ask the question of the “why” and “how” of biographical work.

Our main concern here is: How can we describe the relationship between formative experiences and the freedom of the individual? How much leeway does a person have and how can they use it? When is biographical work in existential analysis indicated? And what significance does this have within the counselling and therapy process? This congress’s purpose is therefore to discuss these questions among collegues and to show how growing and becoming resilient at the various stages of life and in processes of self-distancing may be difficult but not impossible.

We are also looking forward to exploring the question regarding the relationship between biography and freedom with collegues and researchers of other therapeutic schools and disciplines. In this “Dialogue of Schools”, we will enrich our reflections with their thoughts and ideas.

Furthermore, pre-workshops that are preceding the congress are offering an introduction to the specific way of biographical work in existential analysis.

Last but not least: Berlin is always worth a visit!

We cordially invite you and look forward to meeting you.