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

Moment of silence for the Sandy Hook victims.
I have read hundreds of posts, articles, and blogs since the horrible murders of the children and adults in Newtown, CT. I searched for words, images, thoughts, insights, or perspectives that would somehow describe the emotions and turmoil I was experiencing. There was a sense of desperation, a sense of hopelessness that left me feeling incredibly...
George Romero's Night of the Living Dead
The current fascination with zombies and the Zombie Apocalypse seems to clearly reflect of some of the deep-seated concerns with American culture. In his book, Horror and the Holy, Kirk Schneider suggests that monsters often represent two human extremes: constriction and expansion. Dracula embodies Hyper-constriction (deadening qualities) as he...
In the midst of the holiday cheer, carols, and season’s greetings cards, there is something else that demands our attention, something that cannot be silenced and will not go away. I speak of it not because I’m a pessimist, or even a grave realist, or because I want to dispel any of the seasonal magic to which we are desperately...
A memorial for victims of the Newtown shooting.
The citizens of a city are not guilty of the crimes committed in their city; but they are guilty as participants in the destiny of [humanity] as a whole and in the destiny of their city in particular; for their acts in which freedom was united with destiny have contributed to the destiny in which they participate. They are guilty, not of...
There are many police shows on television and a multitude of films dramatizing the work of law enforcement officers in the United States. Early programs like Dragnet and Adam-12 idealized Los Angeles police officers under the banner of “Serve and Protect.” After a few decades, these depictions of police became more realistic by the use...
Photo by The National Institute on Drug Abuse.
When talking to people about what I do, there are generally a few typical responses I get from them. The first is the usually playful "oh, are you analyzing me now?" said with a laugh. Often, people will share their story of how they took a psychology class in college, and how they learned "so much" about themselves and others...
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...