For presentation at Peace Psychology Conference in Bremen,Germany, June 2003

                 VOICES FROM THE GROUND: Limbic Resonance and New Perspectives for Peacemaking in a Changing World

   Molly Scott, Ed.D.


Increasing violence and fragmentation in our world necessitate new models for conflict resolution and peacemaking which reflect the vital interdependence of our communities as well as the dynamic diversity of our differences. In the polarization of these brutal times, how do we marshal our skills to affirm the core truth of our common ground? As peacemakers, we need to find peace in ourselves, draw from the well of our collective human wisdom, and ground our interactions in feelings of connection and compassion as well as in logical analysis.

This presentation proposes a template for resolving conflict in which reason aligns with resonance as an operative concept, balancing the analytical faculty of the neo-cortex with the affective realm of the limbic brain. Drawing on information and research from a range of sources, including systems theory, Eco-psychology, Buddhist psychology, and the Arts, the author suggests that these fields offer practical tools for understanding and implementing access to the “deep voices” of our emotional intelligence in the service of non-violent conflict resolution.

Neuro-imaging confirms that unconscious limbic connections run like rivers between us, mediating our relationships in invisible and powerful ways Like tuning forks, we entrain with each other in subtle state interactions which drive our cognitions and influence our language and behavior. Creating methodology for working with these intrapsychic fields in concrete modes of practice may offer peace psychologists new possibilities for creative peacemaking and conflict resolution in the complex times which lie ahead.


Molly Scott,Ed.D.LMHC, therapist, musician, educator, teaches in the Applied Psychology Program, Antioch New England and maintains a clinical practice in Western Massachusetts, U.S.A. She has lectured and taught in Europe and the U.S. for over twenty five years and frequently facilitates training in Germany in Deep Story and Creative Resonance work. A long-time peace activist and performer, she has produced a number of recordings of her music, including “We Are All One Planet”, “Honor the Earth”, and “Songs of Hope and Healing” on the Sumitra Label.