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New Existentialists

Standing on Holy Ground

12/17/2013
Standing on Holy Ground
I don’t go in for a lot of religion (none, if you want the truth). And yet, this morning I awoke with a phrase from the Old Testament in my head: “Take off your sandals. This is holy ground.” This is the first time Moses meets El at the burning bush in Exodus (3:5). Strange for this old piece of lore to be loitering in my head. Why this, and why now? I haven’t read an old testament story in 20 years or more. So, I let it rattle around in there some, tried to shake loose some message. At first, I thought of how I’d imagined El’s meaning when I was young....

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Psychology

Student Spotlight: Morrice Apprey

12/16/2013
Morrice Apprey

Saybrook Psychology PhD student Morrice Apprey interns at Region Ten Community Services Board in Charlottesburg, Virginia. He takes delight in supporting people’s well-being and building on the work done by his father, psychoanalyst and Saybrook alumnus Maurice Apprey.

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Psychology

Faculty Spotlight: Louis Hoffman, PhD

12/16/2013

Saybrook faculty member Dr. Louis Hoffman is a widely recognized luminary in the field of existential psychology.  The author/editor of five books (including Existential Psychology East-West, Brilliant Sanity: Buddhist Approaches to Psychotherapy, and Spirituality and Psychological Health), he also contributed chapters to many volumes, including Existential-Integrative Psychotherapy: Guideposts to the Core of Practice, Whole Person Healthcare, and Explaining Evil. He serves on the editorial boards for the Journal of Humanistic Psychology and PsycCRITIQUES. Additionally, he is the recent past-president of the Society of Humanistic Psychology (Division 32) of the American Psychological Association.

For those who are interested in taking a humanistic approach to psychology, studying people as people rather than as neurochemicals, reflexes, and synapses, Hoffman says there’s probably no better place than Saybrook.

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New Existentialists

ADHD and the Triumph of Marketing Over Matter

12/16/2013
ADHD and the Triumph of Marketing Over Matter
The New York Times’ special report on “The Selling of Attention Deficit Disorder”  is one more reminder, in a long trail of breadcrumbs, that we become the stories we tell about ourselves. Things that once seemed inevitable—hardwired in, biologically determined—were, in many cases, inventions to suit our life and times. “Childhood,” as a phase of life, is now recognized as a creation of post-industrial society even though it now seems obvious and inevitable. IQ was once thought to be so clearly tied to race that there were physiological...

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Rethinking Complexity

Fear: Its Impact on individuals and organizations

12/15/2013
Fear: Its Impact on individuals and organizations
Fear is often a hidden and unconscious emotion, an emotion that is at the root of our inaction and ‘stuckness’ in our careers and personal lives. What we often see on the surface are the symptoms of fear. Those symptoms may manifest in many ways: as anger, grief, physical pain (yes, physical pain), lack of energy and motivation, procrastination, and other negative manifestations. If we look closely at our everyday actions and interactions we can acknowledge areas of discomfort. If we then sit for a while with that discomfort, we often will find at its basis the element of fear....

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New Existentialists

The Psychology of Altruism: An Urgent Quest of Humanistic Psychology

12/13/2013
The Psychology of Altruism: An Urgent Quest of Humanistic Psychology
On a globe that daily witnesses countless acts of conflict both large and small, our human capacity for altruism seems more important than ever. Not surprisingly, psychologists today are increasingly interested in understanding this vital care-giving phenomenon, certainly with the hope that such knowledge will lead to a more harmonious humanity. The rapid rise of positive psychology, led by Seligman and his associates (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000; Seligman, Steen, Park & Peterson, 2005) has amplified interest in prosocial interaction. But such an interest is hardly new. More...

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New Existentialists

Resisting Compassion

12/12/2013
Resisting Compassion
Most of us don't lack compassion so much as we avoid it. We resist compassion in the United States with a peculiar hypocrisy, extolling the virtues of volunteerism, for instance, while making volunteerism more of a necessity by diminishing our budgetary commitments to the poor and powerless. ... Our primary response to human suffering appears to be making sure it occurs on the other side of town or the other side of the world. --Marianne Williamson (Voices and Verses, 12/09/13) And so, we come again to another season of “peace and goodwill to all”—a time of exercising...

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New Existentialists

An Experience in Relational Dharma

12/11/2013
An Experience in Relational Dharma
It was some years ago, while in my late 20s, that I began therapy and an apprenticeship of sorts with an admired existential psychotherapist. I was intrigued to work with him because of his training and life-long friendship with the controversial and pioneering Scottish psychiatrist, R. D. Laing. As a student of consciousness and existential philosophy, and a practitioner of Buddhist psychology, I had been fascinated by Laing’s work in re-conceptualizing the nature of the individual as pathological to one where context and relationships were inseparable in both the formation of human...

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Rethinking Complexity

Great Leadership Requires Asking Questions

12/11/2013
Great Leadership Requires Asking Questions
So often we look to leaders to provide answers to the most challenging problems we face, whether in politics or business. In fact, great leaders are those who instead ask the right questions and engage others to arrive at the best answers together. The media overly promotes a single businessman, politician or sports star as responsible for overall success. As a result, it’s hard to think of Apple without Steve Jobs, J.P. Morgan Chase without Jamie Dimon, and the current Denver Broncos without Payton Manning. We tend to therefore associate the success of any group as overly reliant on...

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Mind-Body Medicine

Matt Watkins, Saybrook University Mind-Body Medicine Student, Pursues Mindfulness and Presence-Based Coaching Model

12/11/2013
Matt Watkins

 

Matt Watkins is completing his final master's project to fulfill the requirements for a Master’s Degree in Saybrook University's Mind-Body Medicine.  For his culminating project he is combining his love of professional coaching with mind-body skills to develop a coaching model.  The direction of his project is currently unfolding; however, the main focus is how mindful and presence-based coaching, informed by the principles of Health Realization, facilitates the development of self-determined values and actions. 

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