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New Existentialists

Stigma and Dignity

12/11/2014
Stigma and Dignity
When I teach my Psych 101 and MCAT Psych/Soc students about the concept of social stigmas, often they are surprised to hear that it still exists in this country around the idea of seeking help for mental distress. Maybe it’s because I teach in urban settings or maybe because students applying to medical schools come in with a certain sense of elitism. Whatever the reason, it’s easy to forget how much social stigma still exists even in the United States around mental illness. And I use that phrase—one that I often prefer not to use—purposely, as it applies directly to a...

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New Existentialists

The Cost of Activism/Self-Centered Activism

12/10/2014
The Cost of Activism/Self-Centered Activism
China, 2010. I’m in a hotel room with Mark Yang in Shanghai. I’m sleeping, he’s on the phone. It the international existential humanistic conference, and I’m there as a speaker and listener prior to a few days detached to speak in Wuhan. Mark is my bunkmate to save costs. But he’s not just a speaker, but a combination of conference organizer and local guide. When the Americans need something, they go to Mark. Being Mark, he’s all too happy to help people out and he’s one of a few key people competent to do so. His Chinese goes from reasonable to...

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Mind-Body Medicine

Researcher Elena Gillespie Joins Faculty for School of Mind-Body Medicine

12/09/2014
Elana Gillespie, PhD

 

Elena Gillespie, PhD, is a new addition to the research faculty in Saybrook University’s School of Mind-Body Medicine.  She will be teaching a course on Quantitative Research Resign for Healthcare.  Dr. Gillespie has been involved in research for nearly twenty years with a focus in Mind-Body techniques.  She was co-founder of the Complementary and Alternative Medicine Research Center at the University of Michigan funded by the National Institute of Health, now known as the University of Michigan Integrative Medicine Research Center.  Her study assessing the use of Reiki in the amelioration of pain in diabetic neuropathy was the second study utilizing Reiki as a healing modality funded by the NIH.  The results of that quantitative study were published in 2007. 

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New Existentialists

Words That Count

12/09/2014
Words That Count
Last week I wrote about my sense that these days there is a finite number of words, at least for me. What I’ve now noticed, in my growing awareness of words themselves and how they are being used and often, how many are being used, is the inefficiency with which they are being used. Case in point. Kate Pierson of the B-52s has written and put out a new song entitled “Mister Sister.” The song is from her forthcoming album, Guitars and Microphones, due on February 2015. I have not heard the single nor seen the video. But I awoke this morning to yet another Facebook kerfuffle...

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New Existentialists

Inconvenient Emojis

12/08/2014
Inconvenient Emojis
The psychiatric-industrial-complex keeps telling us that depression is best solved by pills, but every new advance in therapeutic treatments tell us otherwise. We just don’t hear about it as much because talk therapy doesn’t have a billion dollar advertising budget. The newest exhibit comes courtesy of The New York Times, which reports on a new “depression fighting strategy” in some developing countries—one that relies entirely on “talking cures” and has (so far) an astonishing rate of success: in some studies only three percent of those treated were...

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Rethinking Complexity

Education Contributing to Issues and Being a Solution for Environmental Sustainability

12/07/2014
Education Contributing to Issues and Being a Solution for Environmental Sustainability
The world of education is under a tremendous amount of pressure to serve two masters. Traditional approaches are called for to ensure students gain opportunities for the next step in their learning journey and new thinking and innovation are required to ensure students are prepared for a world that is ever changing and uncertain. These differing mindsets are important to understand when looking at environmental sustainability in schools and the impact it has locally and globally.  When looking at the barriers and opportunities for environmental education I am filled with both fear and...

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New Existentialists

Existential Roundup

12/05/2014
Existential Roundup
Welcome to the Existential Roundup, where we bring you links to some articles currently trending that may be of interest to those in the existential-humanistic psychology community. To continue the theme of the holiday season, for this week I give to you a list of my favorite holiday season existential movies. I have written in this space in the past about why we should take holiday movies more seriously than we often do, and here are some I have mentioned before and some I haven’t that deserve consideration. Many are suitable for family viewing, as they can be viewed and enjoyed on...

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Mind-Body Medicine

Saybrook University's School of Mind-Body Medicine Offers Four PhD Specializations in Mind-Body Medicine

12/05/2014

 

In August 2009, James S. Gordon and the Center for Mind-Body Medicine collaborated with Saybrook University, founding the Graduate School of Mind-Body Medicine for individuals pursuing a master’s degree and/or doctoral degree.  As the program has grown over the years, the graduate school now provides four doctoral level specializations, to prepare graduates for careers in healthcare and mental healthcare.  Influenced by the humanistic philosophy of Saybrook University, the central focus of each degree program and specializations emphasize person-centered health care, and advocate the importance of integrating self-care, mind-body practices, and other alternative approaches within the mainstream of health and mental healthcare. The School of Mind-Body Medicine is designed as a hybrid program, which affords working professionals the opportunity to conveniently attend a maximum of three short residential conferences a year, as well as complete all of their coursework through online and videoconference technology.

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New Existentialists

Words, Words, Words

12/04/2014
Words, Words, Words
Words, words, words! I'm so sick of words I get words all day through First from him, now from you Is that all you blighters can do? – Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady I used to feel that words, that language, were an infinite resource. That no matter how many I used, there would always be more, even if I simply repeated some over and over: “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” or “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.” Lately, however, I finding language to be finite. And not simply because there are a certain number of words in the English...

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New Existentialists

Out With the Old, In With the New

12/03/2014
Out With the Old, In With the New
For those of you who do not follow the HBO series The Newsroom, penned by that most provocative of television writers, Aaron Sorkin, you have missed a most disturbing plot twist in the series’ final episodes that has actually made me lose sleep. The series centers on the newsroom of the fictional 24-hour news channel, ACN, which is struggling in fourth place behind the other news channels. In addition to ongoing legal and news gathering issues, the company and network is about to be sold, leaving the fate of its staff in limbo. In typical dramatic fashion, a buyer has appeared at the...

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