Archives For: January 2010

Alumni Dinner Events in Southern California-Feb 3rd and 6th


Saybrook's Chair of the Board of Trustees, Alison Bonds Shapiro; Director of Alumni Affairs, George Aiken; Executive Faculty Member, Tom Greening; Alumni Council Member, Charlene Block, and Alumni Council Member, Mark Malay will be hosting dinners in San Diego on February 3rd and in LA on February 6th.

For more information or to arrange an Alumni Dinner in your area, send an email to or call 415-394-5968.

Continue Reading

Alumna Marie Fonrose, PhD '03 Outlines Her Haiti Mission


Alumna Marie Fonrose, PhD '03 who lost 11 relatives in the recent Haiti earthquake outlines her Haiti mission below.

To donate money to support Marie in her work in Haiti, send checks to Saybrook University, attention the Alumni Association Haiti Fund or go to Be sure to designate your donation in support of the Alumni Haiti Fund.

Marie will be leaving for Haiti on February 16th for her first 5 week mission.

From Marie:

Helping people heal and find meaning after the earthquake (Haiti)


The purpose of this trip is to facilitate people in their growth to becoming healthy and balanced after this devastation. In service, my intent will be to serve the whole person utilizing an eclectic approach in the context of the culture. A combination of education, counseling (individual and group), spirituality, and sharing provides the opportunity to the growth process.

Action Plan

Phase I

Individual crisis counseling: Assists earthquake survivors in understanding their current situation and reactions, reviewing their options, and linking them with other individuals and agencies (church) that may assist them.

Group crisis counseling: Includes providing/facilitating support groups. Train leaders in church to lead their own group. Group counseling will be very instrumental in cultural context since many of the sufferers were not able to go through the process of burying their loved ones.

Education: Includes the distribution of psycho-educational information on the crisis counseling-related topics. Educational information may be provided will be provided via public announcement, brochures, flyers, and training to human services personnel.

Assessment and referral: Assessment determines the need for a deeper level of services than can be provided at this time. A list will be developed and shared with the larger organizations who will be leading the mental health component of the project.

Phase II

Assessment—Summarize phase I and develop an action plan to help address the issues that surfaced in phase I. Organize mass training so communities will be able to hold their own via group counseling.

Service—provide services to individuals who pose major risk (safety and welfare).

• Journaling/expressive arts: These can provide an individual with a sense of mastery or control over existing circumstances. This is particularly important after a disaster or trauma where an individual feels a sense of helplessness.

Continue Reading

Alumna Sunny Massad, PhD '00 Releases New Book, UnTherapy


From a press release: UnTherapy Can Release Self-defeating Patterns

UnTherapy speaks to the hearts and souls of self-improvement junkies who find
themselves teetering on the brink of burnout as a result of working on themselves for years on
end. Self-improvement can be self-abusive because the constant drive to fix, cure, and acquire,
prevents peace of mind in the present, says Dr. Sunny Massad, a prominent psychologist in
Honolulu. Stressed but otherwise healthy people need to learn coping skills that traditional
counselors often don't have the training to provide. In fact, traditional therapy may actually stunt
the growth of individuals on a 'spiritual path, Massad explains.

Sunny Massad, Ph.D., originator of the trademarked counseling system called UnTherapy, is also
the author of the upcoming book UnTherapy: A Positive Psychology for Enlightened Living.
She is the President and Founder of the Hawaii Wellness Institute, a nonprofit training
organization in Honolulu, Hawaii, and has a thriving counseling practice. Massad will embark on a
book tour that will start in Honolulu and the Hawaiian islands in January followed by the Paciïfic Northwest,
the San Francisco Bay Area and then Southern California in February.

This is not your ordinary book tour, promises Massad. In addition to the book reading and
signings at each venue, I will provide a free one-hour interactive workshop, demonstrating
UnTherapy by using real issues shared by members of the audience. People will have an
opportunity to learn how to reframe their problems so that they can move beyond old habits of
blame and shame and other self-sabotaging beliefs and behaviors. Massad says she is determined
to bring practical tools for increasing self awareness into the hands of the masses.

To preview the book UnTherapy, go to,-Ph.D.

For more info about UnTherapy:

Continue Reading

A Call for contributions: Edited book ‘Mental Health and Anomalous Experience’


A Call for contributions: Edited book Mental Health and Anomalous Experience

Original contributions (exposition papers, critical literature reviews, methodological evaluations or papers presenting novel methodologies, but not new empirical work) are invited for an edited book on 'Mental Health and Anomalous Experience' (negotiations with publishers in progress). The book is intended to be of interest to mental health researchers and mental health-care practitioners.

'Mental Health' is used here to refer to mental well-being in clinical and non-clinical samples. The term 'Anomalous Experience' is taken to refer to a broad variety of experiences, including spiritual, religious, extraordinary or exceptional experiences, aberrant perceptions or beliefs. Examples of suitable topics include (but are not restricted to): hearing voices; bereavement hallucinations; end-of-life experiences; paranormal and religious experiences, shamanistic, and (where links to mental health can be elaborated) religious or paranormal investigative practices. Contributions which draw on one or more of the following areas or related fields are welcome: anthropology; medicine; palliative care, psychology, religious studies, sociology.

Interested contributors (authors together with any co-authors) are invited to submit a title, author biographical description (no more than 100 words for each author/co-author) and full contact addresses along with an abstract (250 words in length) no later than Friday 19th February via email to Proposed contributions will be reviewed by the editor and inclusion in the book will be confirmed by Monday March 15th. Full manuscripts (6000 words in length including references, APA style) will be required by Wednesday 14th July. Publication is anticipated in early 2011.

Dr Craig D. Murray

Senior Lecturer in Qualitative Research Methods
Doctorate of Clinical Psychology
Division of Health Research
Bowland Tower East
Lancaster University
Lancaster, Ontario

Continue Reading

Division 51's Journal of Trauma and Dissociation Invites Submissions


Trauma, Dissociation, and Intimate Relationships

A Special Issue of the Journal of Trauma and Dissociation

The guest editors are inviting submissions on the associations among trauma, dissociation,
and intimate relationships.

In addition to its impact on individual psychological well-being, trauma creates barriers
to healthy interpersonal functioning. This is not limited to romantic relationships because
intimate connections with family members, friends, co-workers, and community members
can also be affected. Given the importance of healthy relationships for psychological health,
it isimperative that research addressing these issues for survivors of trauma be made
available to the research and clinical communities, and to the general public. We
primarily are seeking reports of original research and comprehensive reviews/meta-analyses
of existing research, but case studies, clinical conceptualization, and theoretical papers also
will be considered. All submissions will undergo peer review. Submissions will be evaluated for
topic relevance, methodological rigor, scientific and/or clinical value, and
implications for application.

Complete submissions will be accepted until December 1, 2010. Please refer
to the journal website for specific submission requirements (including a
required author assurance/ submission checklist) and more information about the
Journal of Trauma and Dissociation:

Inquiries and submissions should be sent to the special issue editors at
Eileen L. Zurbriggen, Ph.D. Phone: 831-459-5736
Dept. of Psychology Fax: 831-459-3519
277 Social Sciences 2 Email:
Santa Cruz, CA 95064 U.S.A.

Continue Reading

Alumna Susan Gordon, PhD '07 Shares Coming Lecture Schedule


Alumna Susan Gordon recently wrote a paper for the Society of Asian and Comparative Philosophy based on her candidacy essay on Alan Watts. She says they loved it!

Susan's Coming Lectures:

Existential psychology and the meaning of human development. Society of Asian and Comparative Philosophy, Pacific Grove, CA (6/18-6/21/10)

Neurophenomenology: The mind and the brain. Division 52, APA, Western Psychological Association''s 90th Annual Convention, Fiesta Americana Condesa, Cancun, Mexico (4/22- 4/25/10)

Existential challenges of midlife - First Bi-Annual Existential Psychology East-West Conference, Nanjing, China (4/2-4/5/10)

Neurophenomenology: The mind and the brain. Mid-winter Meeting, Division 24, APA, Miami, FL (2/26-2/28/10)

Neurophenomenology and the enactive approach to cognition. Chair, Symposium, Point Park University, Pittsburgh, PA (2/20/10)

Continue Reading

Alumna Renee Levi, PhD 03 is Associated with the Powers of Place Initiative


Alumna Renee Levi, PhD 03 has been associated with the Powers of Place Initiative over the last year.

You are invited to visit the new Powers of Place website:

The web site, which explores how place, space and environment contributes to individual and collective transformation, was created by a small but growing international network of people supported by the Fetzer Institute. We believe that places are alive. We believe that right relationship between people and place results in tremendous transformative power. Over the past two years we've convened a series of meetings and research initiatives, the results of which are now available on our site.

We hope and suspect that the site will not only confirm what you've suspected all along, but also stimulate your thinking in new and unexpected ways. We expect that it will introduce you to a vital network of international practitioners who are together defining and shaping this new field of study and practice. We would be honored if you join us and hope that you'll add your experience to our growing knowledge base as this important new field takes shape.

Continue Reading

Saybrook Alumni Haiti Effort


Dear Saybrook Faculty, Staff, Board Members, and Alumni,

Earlier, I spoke with Saybrook alumna and immigrant from Haiti, Marie Fonrose, Ph.D. ’03, who thinks that mental health issues are going to become more serious in Haiti as this crisis progresses. She has an uncle in Haiti who is already showing signs of earthquake related stress, including delusions. The lack of food and water, and the potential for disease are systemic, and the situation will no doubt continue to get worse. People living in suburban areas just outside the city are already out of water and food, and relief efforts have not reached them. Marie would like to go to Haiti and offer therapy and counseling, especially in areas that are going unnoticed by larger humanitarian efforts.

The Alumni Association and Saybrook University would like to help Marie with the purchase of a plane ticket and living expenses, so she can go to Haiti for a month or two as a therapist/counselor. Marie has experience as a therapist, has worked with Haitian immigrants in the DC area, and knows the language and culture of Haiti, having immigrated to the US at the age of 12. She is also experiencing this current devastation from a personal perspective, with 11 of her relatives having died in this quake, including a half-brother, aunts and uncles, and cousins.

If you’d like to help Marie go to Haiti, send Tax-Deductible Donations written to Saybrook University to my attention at the address below. You can also make a donation on the website to the Alumni Campaign Fund . Please send an email to the , letting me know what portion of your donation should be designated for this effort.

May our hearts and prayers go out to the people of Haiti,


Continue Reading

Saybrook University Press Release


Dear Alumni (For the Press Release, See Link Below):

This week marks an important milestone for our community. Today we distributed the attached press release making the formal announcement of our transformation into Saybrook University. We’re excited to share the word of our innovative programs and highlight our community’s accomplishments.

As members of our community, you are our most powerful messengers to communicate our story. I would like to invite you to help us spread the word about the exciting changes taking place.
· Tell your Network: Letyour online network know about our University and its Colleges by posting a link to the website as your Facebook status, tweeting the news that the University has arrived, or writing a post on your blog.
· Tell a Story: Share a story about what the University and/or your College means to you. No pamphlet or brochure can match the power of your personal account.
Thank you all for your efforts to help us launch our new University.



Sigrid Badinelli
Vice President, Marketing and Strategic Development

To See Press Release Click Here

Continue Reading

Saybrook Alumnus and Faculty Member Kirk Schneider Announces Radio interviews and a Book Signing for “Awakening to Awe: Personal Stories of Profound Transformation”


Alumnus and Saybrook Faculty Member Kirk Schneider Announces Radio Interviews and a Book Signing for Awakening to Awe: Personal Stories of Profound Transformation (Jason Aronson, 2009)

Interview with Michael Krasny, host of KQED’s Forum
Thursday Feb. 4th, 10 am

Kirk and several of the book’s contributors will give a talk and signing at
Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd, Corte Madera, CA
Saturday Feb. 6th, 4pm

Kirk was interviewed by Michael Toms of New Dimensions radio
Airs Jan. 27-Feb. 2 Worldwide (according to Kirk, this was a very spirited and informative show in my view), See Below:

New Dimensions Media is featuring an interview with Kirk Schneider, on its worldwide broadcast schedule, in January.
Reawakening to Life’s Great Adventure Hosted by Michael Toms. Program 3327

It will air the week, January 27 – February 2, 2010 (broadcast week begins on Wednesdays) on stations throughout the U.S. and Australia. You can also hear it streaming for free on the New Dimensions website for two weeks beginning Jan 27th or you can download it for a small fee beginning Jan 1st. Go to "Listening Options" in their website for a list of stations and carry "New Dimensions."

Topics explored in this dialogue:
* How our culture insulates us from experiencing awe
* Why is awe important in your life
* Why we are drawn to horror films and science fiction
* How your dog or cat can help you tap into the awesomeness of life
* Why efficiency interferes with inspiration
From the dark terror of his own breakdown, Kirk Schneider has come to live in a state of awe. He explored the roots of his nightmares and anxiety, and the habits that kept him depressed and disengaged, and found that life is something to marvel at. Now he shares the long, winding road he traveled from there to here, and offers guideposts each of us can use to find our own way. Join him as he explains the reasons we spend so much of our lives disengaged from our sense of wonder, and the many tools and teachers that surround us, ready to help us regain it. The rewards, he assures us, are many. "Awe is a vital way of experiencing life," he says. "It has the capacity to lift one out of one's narrow identifications. We so often get stuck in certain fears or judgments. And awe is able to acknowledge that we’re creatures, we're anxious, we're fragile somewhat. But at the same time it points us to the more--the more of who we are and the more of what we're participating in." Inspired by the wisdom of Dr. Schneider you’ll find a renewed capacity to occupy parts of your being that you may not have considered before--your most vital, essential self.
Program #3327 59:00 Minutes
Justine Willis Toms, PhD (hon)
Co-founder, Managing Producer
New Dimensions World Broadcasting Network

Kirk J. Schneider, PhD

Continue Reading

Alumnus David Whitsitt, PhD '08 Publishes Article on Illness and Meaning


Alumnus David Whitsitt, PhD '08 Publishes Illness and Meaning: A Review of Select Writings in the Journal of Humanistic Psychology, Vol 50, No.1, 108-131.

Continue Reading

The Goddess Cycle: A Ritual of Renewal April 2010-Berkeley, CA


The Goddess Cycle: A Ritual of Renewal April 2010.

All relevant info can be found here:

Where: Berkeley, CA, 4/6/2010
Press contact: or

In collaboration with The Fellowship of the Spiral Path: The Goddess Cycle: A Ritual of Renewal" April 6, 2010.
Libretto: Lezlie Kinyon
Original Compositions: Lauren Renee Hotchkiss (music Director), Diana Rowan, Theodosia, Bon Singer

In order of appearance:
Mark O'Neil as Tiresias, Theodosia as Arke, The Supplicant, Michael Schemel as The Forest God, Roberta Gould as Medea, Hallie Frazer as Spider Woman, Diana Rowan as Calypso, Bon Singer as The Queen of Heaven, Diana Dorell, Varsha, Carol Jaron - others.

Artists: Faye Douglass-Johnson, Emily Mehr, Clarice Schawrk, Denita Beneshek, Michael Schemel, Kai Schuman, Lezlie Kinyon (Art Direction)
Ritual facilitators: Herb de Grasse and Ren Monson

Continue Reading

Therapist/Teacher Training in Non-Dual Therapy w/Peter Fenner in the Bay Area, CA


Therapist/Teacher Training in Non-Dual Therapy w/Peter Fenner in the Bay Area, CA

Peter will be in the Bay Area this January for an evening of nondual inquiry on Thurs Jan 14th (7pm) and a workshop on Sat Jan 16th (11am-5pm). Both events are sponsored by the East Bay Open Circle and are by donation. For more information visit

He will be available for one-on-one meetings with anyone who is interested in the Nondual Teacher and Therapist Training which will be offered in San Francisco from March 25, 2010 - Feb 6, 2011.

There is no charge for these meetings; you will have 45 minutes to meet with Peter, experience his work and ask any questions you have about the Training.

Meetings will be held at Marin Suites Hotel, 45 Tamal Vista Boulevard, Corte Madera, CA 94925 on:

Wed Jan 13th / 9:30am - 9:15pm
Thurs Jan 14th / 9:30am - 4:15pm
Fri Jan 15th / 9:30am - 4:15pm

To schedule a meeting with Peter email Jonathan Taylor, You may also call 1(250)354-7511, or 1(877)723-6463.

Continue Reading