Sightings of Rilke in intermediate space: Imagination and object relations

Andrew Michael Prokopis (1998)

In Western thought, imagination has been set in opposition to notions of reason and reality. This has been the case in various disciplines in the West, such as philosophy, psychology, and science. The arts alone have kept the legacy and power of imagination present and vital. And yet, in truth, imagination plays with reason and reality, giving us ways out of the constraints and excesses of the rational and the real aspects of our lives. By exploring what has been said and understood about imagination, psychology can come to better understand, and revisit the central role of, the imaginal in human existence. Imagination is the place where, and way, experience occurs for us. It is where all oppositions and conflicts come together and are resolved. Imagination, therefore, needs to be the study of, and way of, psychology. For it is there, "in the infinite, blissful space between world and toy" (Rilke, in the 4th Elegy), that we evolve and evoke who we always were from the beginning of our life, of our history, and of human existence.