It matters that people have a way to use the latest findings in psychology beyond buying a pill for depression. It matters that people have a way of looking at their lives that lets them ask the big questions and determine how they want to live – and that this is supported by therapists and mental health professionals.

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Posts tagged with the category 21st century life

Today I went to pick up a new pair of eyeglasses. Every time I have ever worn a new pair of specs, something very interesting happens, regardless of whether my prescription changes. I put the glasses on, and everything looks clearer, at first. Then I get up to walk away, and the world appears slightly out of proportion. The clarity is still...
Ving making coffee in her Kuala Lumpur shop.
Not being a coffee drinker, I nevertheless went on a quest for a good cup of coffee in Malaysia with my friend and Zheng Liren, a frequent contributor to The New Existentialists, because of his deep passion for everything related to coffee.  Liren makes a point of visiting specialty coffee shops wherever he travels.  He told us about how...
Photo by Richard Masoner.
On December 1, without much fanfare, the Board of the American Psychiatric Association approved the draft of the DSM-5. Even as of today, more than a week later, very few news outlets have covered this major story. It seems as though the American Psychiatric Association would rather keep things quiet rather than promote their new book. I suppose...
She sits quietly at the table with her head bowed just enough so that the shadow of her hair crosses her face, blocking a clear view of her melancholy affect. Her fork dances among the food on her plate, moving food from one spot to another but never lifting food to her mouth. Her eyes are hollow and empty, looking but not seeing. Her face and...
The barracks at Auschwitz.
[Editor's Note: The following are the author's reflections during and following a trip to site of the concentration camps at Auschwitz-Birkenau in Oświęcim, Poland, as part of Bernie Glassman's and the Zen Peacemaker's 17th annual "Bearing Witness Retreat."] While I do not know what the ultimate impact of this experience will be, I do know that...
My husband and I recently had the good fortune to travel to Mayan sites in Guatemala and Copan, Honduras. To prepare for our trip, we attended the Maya 2012 Lords of Time exhibit at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. The exhibition explored the current fascination with predictions of a world-transforming...
Photo by Cha già José.
It is time to go to war again against the DSM-5 panel and the new volume they have agreed to publish as is. This book will radically reshape the way clinicians have to bill insurance, codes diagnoses, and receive reimbursement. Some of the worst things did not make it into the volume—parental alienation disorder, for example, a product of divorce...
Photo by Gamesingear.
"There is nothing which requires such gentle handling as an illusion." --Søren Kierkegaard I have been raised to believe in honesty, that we don’t cheat—ever—and that our word, when given, is binding. These values are very strong family values that I wish to instill in my own children. However, lately, I have been wondering if those values are a...
Occupy Wall Street. Photo by David Shankbone.
At the 2012 Existential-Humanistic Institute Conference, John Galvin presented on the topic of “Existential Activism.” It was a wonderful presentation that led to many interesting thoughts and discussions. Although I have long aspired to being socially responsible, I never considered myself an activist prior to a colleague referring to me as one....
Winter Solstice. Photo by David Wright.
The encroaching darkness this time of year is a stark reminder of my existential predicament. When I finally realized that the light was severely lacking, I was forced to accept that I was again in a shallow relationship with the sun. I prefer deep relationships, so this always disappoints me. No, it depresses me. Because I am no stranger to...
I’m sure we are all familiar with what I assume is the most frequently asked question in a first encounter or meeting with another person: “So, what do you do?” I cannot be the only one who is intrigued by this very common phenomenon. In terms of cultural commentary, I wonder what this says about our American society. What does this question mean...
Albius Tibullus (c. 54-19 BCE)
“Before one’s individual ability-to-be, there goes an unshakable joy in this possibility.” -– Martin Heidegger, Being and Time While I do not feel very celebratory about the colonization of American by the West, and the violent displacement of Native Americans, I think a holiday dedicated to gratitude is not such a bad idea in itself. In today’s...