The Lüscher diagnostics

Any psychological theory that seeks to understand man without his striving for meaning, without harmony, sees only partial aspects. It lacks the necessary order of meaning, which a priori belongs to the essence of man.  Max Lüscher

Max Lüscher's interest in physiognomics and expressive science motivated him at the age of 16 to engage intensively with research methods. The school psychologist and university lecturer for applied psychology Ernst Probst recognized his psychological talent. He encouraged him by assigning him various tasks, such as examining the significance of colour in the Rorschach test. This was the beginning of the Lüscher-Color-Diagnostics. It took 5 years of intensive research before the colour test was first presented at the World Congress of Psychology in Lausanne in 1947, before he was able to complete it in 1949 with his dissertation on "Colour as a psychological investigative tool". In his dissertation, he sketched out in a few sentences the considerations on colour choice as a psychodiagnostic method of a personality test.

Colour as an instrument

Max Lüscher started from the principle that the appearance of color is objective for human perception. Based on this, he focused his interest on the individual experience of a certain color appearance. With the help of categorical psycho-logic, he developed a method with which the objective meaning of color quality can be determined. Once the objective meaning has been established, the reactive behavior of the individual allows conclusions to be drawn about the individual inclinations and needs. All test colors were categorically determined in this way.

If it can be generally and culturally determined that, for example, the test colour orange-red is perceived as stimulating and therefore active, as opposed to the calming and therefore passive effect of dark blue, it can be used as an instrument in its objective psychological meaning. If the individual experiences the actively perceived effect as more sympathetic than the passive one, statements can be made about the preferred behaviour because of the similarity of the experiences, i.e. experiences of the same category. In simple terms: the clear preference for active experiences allows statements to be made about possible behaviour patterns in specific life situations. In addition, the test also shows the degree of intensity of the preference, so that statements can also be made about the characteristics of the behaviour, such as the gradation from "committed" to "aggressive, provocative" to "hysterical".

The colours required for the test procedure were developed conceptually within the framework of structural functional psychology in clinical studies lasting several years. The advantage of non-verbal colour diagnostics lies in the spontaneous reaction of the test persons to a sufficiently well-known and familiar phenomenon - the quality of colour. Since the categories of psycho-logic are derived from the subject-object relation as a logical basic function, they record all possible attitudes towards the environment and the world around them as well as towards oneself - and thus all modes of experience and behaviour.

Further information on Lüscher diagnostics can be found at www.luscher-color.ch.

For training in Lüscher diagnostics please read here.


Training in Lüscher diagnostics

Today's form of Lüscher diagnostics offers a mature set of instruments which, with little effort and in a short period of time, provide initial indications of both the current and constitutional condition. A deeper psychological understanding recognizes inclinations, fixations, conflicting forms of behavior, early signs of neuroses and psychoses. A computer-assisted evaluation shows a cross-section of the current resilience factors, the coping strategy and possible affective disorders.

Lüscher diagnostics is no substitute for psychological training. A specific initial training is a prerequisite for the meaningful use of Lüscher diagnostics. For an adequate understanding of Lüscher diagnostics, training in the form of seminars is also essential. The Max Lüscher Foundation offers a multi-level certificate training for this purpose. You can find more information You can find out more under www.luscher-color.com.

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