Introduction To Wayland Myers Thesis

Wayland Myers is a psychologist who joined the Martin Muller's Ontology group in 1974 and studied with Martin for several years during which time he completed this doctoral thesis entitled Empathy: A Spectrum of Sharing,  in 1977. He has graciously allowed us to reproduce this thesis on this website for your use.

Wayland first learned about the group from a friend who had been with Martin for about 3 years. He decided to pursue a doctoral thesis interest in empathy as a consequence of his attendance. He continued as a student with Martin and the groups for several years after the completion of his thesis and sat as a committee member for Gayl Welch's dissertation. She has acknowledged Wayland's technical support in the completion of her thesis.

Empathy is a significant issue in the field of psychology and Wayland defines it, presents the array of orientations to it, as well as creates a model for looking at the spectrum of ways of viewing this phenomena. His identification and elaboration of the "cobiotic experience" is  unique in the field and he presents the predominant characteristics of this construct.

During this phenomenological study  he interviewed Martin  (M.M) and their discussion has been added as a separate file for your use. In it Martin describes "Livance", a term he coined to distinguish the fullness of "that which one fully lives". For those interested in Martin's work, this is an invaluable addition to the transcripts of his sessions.

We wish to express our thanks to Wayland for agreeing to share his work.  We hope its inclusion on this site will extend the understanding of "empathy" and the foundation of the work Martin facilitated.



By Wayland Meyers

The Full Study


The full study is available for download here as a Word document and here as a PDF file.