La Jolla, CA - The Art of Mindfulness & Counseling: Mar-Apr 2011

Hilton Torry Pines, La Jolla, CA
March 31 - April 2, 2011



Agenda (Subject to change)

Thursday, March 31, 2011

8:30 – 10:00 a.m.

Mindfulness & Trauma: The Pain Paradox

Although our culture is highly invested in avoiding "negative" experience, Both Western and Buddhist psychologies agree: avoiding emotional pain actually leads to greater long-term suffering.

John Briere, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychiatry & Psychology at Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California

10:30 – 12:00 noon

Mindfulness, Compassion & the Therapist

Being a therapist means regular exposure to people undergoing painful emotions & describing upsetting things. Mindfulness and compassion can lessen vicarious traumatization & countertransference and increase enjoyment and growth in the work.

John Briere, Ph.D.

1:30 – 3:00 p.m. & 3:30 - 5:00 p.m.

The Passionate Possibility of Attention: The Art of Mindfulness

Almost everyone who sees the movie Avatar understands the pivotal significance of the phrase, "I see you!" It creates safety, vitality, liberating possibilities. Therapists skilled in paying attention, by their manner of response, invite and mentor clients into paying attention and discovering both the healing that comes through connection and the inspiration that is the fruit of newly profound insights.

These workshops use mindfulness training, practice in mindfulness meditation, and examples of therapeutic situations in which mindfulness was particularly liberating.

Sylvia Boorstein, LCSW, Ph.D.
Author, Happiness is an Inside Job, 2008; Co-founder, teacher Spirit Rock Meditation Center

Friday, April 1, 2011

8:30 - 10:00 a.m. & 10:30 - 12:00 noon

The Art of Lovingkindness: The Profound Pleasure (& Therapeutic Power) of Good Will

Sigmund Freud is said to have said, "Patients start to get better the moment they realize I truly love them." As therapists, we hope to meet all the people we see with warm, cordial intent recognizing that the sense of being cared for is itself a facilitator for confronting inner conflict and for change.

In these workshops, we will particularly consider Metta (Lovingkindness), continuous attention to the presence or absence of good will in the mind, as a subset of mindfulness practice.

Sylvia Boorstein, LCSW, Ph.D.


  • • The Mindful Child: The New ABCs of Learning — Attention, Balance, & Compassion Working with Pre-K to Early Elementary Age Children
    Learn fun, practical and age-appropriate mindfulness activities that have real life applications. See how young children can practice mindfulness at home, with friends & in school, and watch their attention, balance and compassion, grow along that way.
    Susan Kaiser Greenland, J.D.
    Author, The Mindful Child; Co-founder, developer, Inner Kids Foundation

  • • Naikan: The Japanese Art of Cultivating Gratitude through Mindfulness & Self-Reflection
    Influenced by the psychological principles of Shin Buddhism, Naikan offers a systematic method of self-reflection which tends to promote gratitude and helps us to shift attention away from the self and to a broader awareness of how the world is supporting us.
    Gregg Kreech
    One of America's leading experts on Japanese Psychology; Author, Naikan: Gratitude, Grace & the Japanese Art of Self-Reflection; Director & Co-founder, ToDo Institute, Vermont

  • • The Body, Mind, Spirit of Trauma
    We will explore the impact of trauma on the body, mind, and soul, how they are connected,and how trauma resolution requires healing of the whole of the human system.
    Judy T. Crane, LMHC, CAT, CSAT
    Executive Director, The Refuge - A Healing Place


  • • The Prison of Self-Focused Attention & How We Can Escape
    Morita therapy, developed in Japan & rooted in Zen, promotes the skillful use of attention, teaching us strategies to avoid self-pre-occupation so we can more fully engage with the world around us.
    Gregg Kreech

  • • The New ABCs of Learning for Teens - Attention, Balance & Compassion
    Mindfulness is a special kind of awareness that helps you clearly see & better understand what's happening in, to, and around you.
    Come learn activities & techniques for teens & pre-teens to help nurture emotional regulation & strengthen attention.
    Susan Kaiser Greenland, J.D.

  • • NARCISSUS MEETS BUDDHA: Transforming Narcissistic Relationships
    This lecture will focus on the integration of mindfulness practice work with narcissistic clients as well as developing a new understanding of the causes of this form of psychological suffering. Techniques for treating the underlying emotions of shame, anxiety, dysphoria and anger in narcissists will be introduced. Finally, because these clients are often challenging this presentation will also address how to maintain our own mindfulness and empathy with difficult clients.
    Rokelle Lerner
    Author, Living in the Comfort Zone: The Gift of Boundaries in Relationships; President, Lerner & Associates, St Paul, MN; Consultant, Cottonwood de Tucson

Saturday, April 2, 2011

8:30 - 10:00 a.m.

Compassion & Neuroscience — Why is it a good thing to be compassionate?

His holiness the Dalai Lama has said, "Compassion is not a luxury; it is a necessity for the human race to survive." This session will explore some of the latest research on compassion, as well as, including various practices of compassion.

Roshi Joan Halifax, Ph.D.
Buddhist teacher, anthropologist, author, & social activist; Abbot & Head Teacher, Upaya Zen Center, Santa Fe, N.M.; Author of many books, including Being with Dying


  • • Compassion in Action: Altars in the Streets
    In this session, we will look at how you can bring compassion forward in our everyday lives. How compassion is the basis of service, and actualizing compassion as a basis for resilience. We will do practices of compassion that can be and for one's self and with others who are suffering.
    Roshi Joan Halifax, Ph.D.

  • • Becoming a Healer: Contemplative Practices and the Inner Tradition of Healing
    The 21st century health care professional is confronted by the unique challenge of integrating the genius of science with the wisdom of other healing traditions. Building on archetypal models of the healer, this presentation describes the psychological and spiritual development of a healer.
    James Duffy, M.D.
    Chief of Integrative Medicine, Sierra Tucson, Tucson, AZ


  • • Being with Dying: Cultivating Compassion, Fearlessness in the Presence of Death (PART I)
    This session will explore five main challenges clinicians and caregivers face in caring for the dying. It will include an introduction to key meditation practices that foster altruism.
    Roshi Joan Halifax, Ph.D.

  • • Healing Trauma: Clinical Applications of Mindfulness & Mind Body Psychology
    This session will cover theory & clinical applications in shifting patients from the trauma state to the healing state. Skills & concepts from Somatic psychotherapies, Contemporary Ericksonian & Buddhist psychological principles are demonstrated.
    Ron Alexander, Ph.D.
    Psychotherapist, Exec. Dir., Open Mind Training Institute, Santa Monica, CA.; Author, Wise Mind Open Mind


  • • Being with Dying (PART II)
    This session will explore a comprehensive approach to compassionate care of the dying and working with approaches to care for caregivers. It will include meditation practices exploring worldview & priorities.
    Roshi Joan Halifax, Ph.D.

  • • The Art of Mindful Leadership
    This session will focus on the psychology of Mindful leaders & Buddhist psychological principles for developing "Mindstrength."
    Ron Alexander, Ph.D.

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