Dramatically developing personal potential in life through the Picture Map Analysis
Method (PMA) by Tajima, ICLC
What is PMA ?
To establish oneself, it is necessary to look inward and discover the path in life to be taken. However, society today produces an unfeeling environment that makes self-discovery difficult. Individuality first appears when one stands firmly as one. Every person possesses a wonderful individual character that cannot truly be compared to any other. To provide the opportunity for each person's eyes to be set aglow with the self-discovery of that unique personality - this is the most important role of education. For children and the adults who should be their support, the Picture Map Analysis (PMA) process represents the guidepost to that self-discovery. Using pictures and words to by one's own hand put into map form the inner feelings and outer settings of one's life, issues can be concretely realized and resolved. This process allows the participants to see significant changes as they begin to occur from the inner being.
Power of word, power of image
Everyone is attempting - though unconsciously and through a process of trial and error - to produce his or her own life map in the heart. With a map, one may confirm one's present place and get an overview of the direction in which one should progress. Unlike a geographical map, however, the picture map of life cannot be completed merely by repeating fixed operations. Producing a map of deep psychology that cannot be expressed in numbers or marks is naturally a very difficult proposition. A map of words and pictures, no matter how imperfect, will bring into focus some corner of reality. If the drawn picture map is analyzed in detail, hidden facts can as a whole be brought into view.
The well-known psychology test known as the projective technique, in which objects expressed in a picture are said to reflect the mental state of the individual, accomplishes what is not possible in verbal media. Trees, houses and people rendered as drawings depict what lies in the mind. This method is used as a kind of psychotherapy. In picture map analysis (PMA), moreover, not only pictures but also words and symbols are effectively incorporated in an overall relativity. PMA is, in short, an educational program for uncovering and analyzing the whole relation of the deep psyche.
Two major effects are achieved by this:
(1) the self-liberation that uplifts the spirit, such as is aimed at in psychoanalysis through portraying anguish from the psyche in some work (picture, etc); and
(2) the acquisition of a compass of information and wisdom for carrying out and acting upon the results of detailed analysis, so as to construct concrete steps for life ahead. To enrich one's life, one must comprehend in language one's feelings and surrounding environment, and from that point find and put into practice the techniques of self-liberation. In fact, the most important skills of life cannot be taught by or learned from another. It is for children and adults who are unknowingly being driven to desperation that the power of word and picture are utilized to lead them to their self-constructed action plan for problem resolution, and to aid in finding the best means of encouraging them along their respective life paths. This is the major objective of PMA.
-Doing this picture map workshop, I came to understand what I think. For example, I saw that I have many dreams and things I want to do. I had never tried to draw a picture map about myself, so at first I did not know what I should draw, but as I gradually understood, it became very enjoyable. ( 12 years old, student)
-Things I wrote onto places representing what I could not do in my picture map helped me overcome those to become able to improve. On ‘Health Island' I wrote that I could not get up in the morning, and then tried harder, and became able to get up easily. (boy student)
-There were various unpleasant things in me, but I discovered that I have various dreams. After the picture map was finished, I made various objectives. I thought ‘How can I go about achieving these things I want to do?' (12 years old, student)
To make our way through these unprecedented times of the 21st century, we must convert our
experiences of the outside world into a search inward. It is imperative to address the ancient
yet new and ever timely issues of " from where, doing what, how to live" in a fashion that casts
the individual in the leading role. In words and pictures there is great power to move the
human heart and mind. For one who is beset with various problems of living, requires new
vision, or desires a creative human relationship, I firmly believe that the PMA can be a decisive
compass to guide in pursuing the best possible life.
International Center for Literacy and Culture (ICLC)