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

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...
"Narcissus." Photo by Adi Ness (2000).
I spoke with a fellow psychotherapist this weekend at the Sixth Annual Conference for the Existential Humanistic Institute in San Francisco about a topic that seems to be presenting itself to me in many circles. It is a topic that I have been motivated to explore because of personal experiences I've encountered, as well as academically and...
I was recently conducting a workshop in Singapore, and an earnest student asked, “You talked a lot about the healing power of companionship, but how exactly does that help when it comes to pain and suffering?” I’ve accepted the “truth” that companionship is a powerful antidote for existence pain and suffering, but it’s been a while since I’ve...
I used to hang around Goth clubs. I would paint my face white, wear a frilly shirt, the whole Goth bit. At this time, even though I was a young man, the people in the clubs were mostly younger than me, and the scene was transitioning from Vampire Goths (people who dressed with imagined old-world elegance) to Indy Goth (people who still liked to...