The sense of smell is a core aspect of the human experience. For thousands of years scent has helped us to understand and navigate our environment, attract or avoid others, learn and remember, and make meaning. On a fundamental level, our sense of smell is one way the human psyche experiences itself and the world around us.
But there are many questions to uncover. Why do some people love a certain smell that others find repulsive? Why do particular aromas stimulate visceral memories? And why do some scents elicit strong emotions, such as pleasure or disgust? The connection of scent to our emotions, memories, and social relationships demonstrates the power of aromas. In a profound sense, aromas are part of who we are.
This course focuses on six facets of the psychology of scent: Sensation & Perception; Emotions; Memory; Imagination; Meaning; and Social/Cultural Scents.
Brian Falk PhD, LAc holds a Masters degree in Chinese Medicine from Five Branches University in Santa Cruz, California. He also earned a PhD in Depth Psychology with an emphasis in Somatic Studies from Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, California. Brian’s doctoral research took an interdisciplinary approach to investigate the psychology of aromas.
His current interests involve writing and teaching about the intersections of Chinese medicine and Depth Psychology, and how each field can inform the other. Brian maintains a clinical practice in his hometown of Ventura, California.