Author Topic: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy  (Read 3834 times)

Offline mikey

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Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« on: April 25, 2010, 09:48:11 am »

Jack Kornfied talks about different approaches to meditation & mindfulness, in a three-day workshop. Whether you agree or disagree with his approach, it is still interesting read. Here are some excerpts from his talk:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/04/23/blending-buddhism-and-psy_n_550222.html

Offline Monkey Mind

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2010, 10:17:04 am »
Jack Kornfield= Buddhist psychology as a modern psychotherapy tool
Jon Kabat-Zinn= meditation and acceptance as a therapy tool when combined with CBT: Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy
Marsha Leenihan= Zen concepts of mindfulness, no-self and acceptance as a therapy tool when combined with CBT: Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
Steven Hayes= Eightfold path as a therapy tool when combined with CBT: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.

Offline Lobster

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2012, 09:51:37 pm »
Yesterday I was with a close family member being assesed
by a psychiatrist and social worker.
According to buddhist theory everyone in the room was
crazed. However only one person was as crazy as a fruit bat who has lost their bannanas.

Distress and unhappiness is one of the extremes of human behaviour.
Guard your mind
it is mined.

May all know happiness
to the last fruit

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2012, 06:36:20 am »
Jack Kornfield= Buddhist psychology as a modern psychotherapy tool
Jon Kabat-Zinn= meditation and acceptance as a therapy tool when combined with CBT: Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy
Marsha Leenihan= Zen concepts of mindfulness, no-self and acceptance as a therapy tool when combined with CBT: Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
Steven Hayes= Eightfold path as a therapy tool when combined with CBT: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.

Interesting, I didn't know about all of these.  Would you include Secular Buddhism as a path of self-development?

Offline sdjeff1

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2012, 08:45:10 am »
I'm in full agreement as far as using Buddhism in therapy. The only problem I have with the model right now is that most therapist have no clue how to teach their clients meditation, let alone get most of them to post-therapy.
It's easier to push the cart rather than thinking of pushing the cart.
-anonymous monk

To be normal is the ideal aim of the unsuccessful.
-CG Jung

Offline Monkey Mind

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Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2012, 09:45:01 am »
I've written about this a length elsewhere in FS. I'll look for a link...


Offline francis

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2012, 02:37:53 pm »
Buddhism may be therapeutic, but its not therapy.

Therapy is all about attachment to the self or me, the Buddha taught no self.  I think westerners have it the wrong way around. It’s only when “therapists” start to realise this, instead of trying to westernise Buddhism, that any progress will be made. 

Perspective, Buddhism Meets Western Science

“The third mark of existence, that of nonself, describes dependent origination, the central philosophy of Buddhism which states that all phenomena, including persons, are constructed and dependent upon a network of causes and conditions.

The other face of dependent origination is the doctrine of emptiness. All phenomena, including persons, are empty of any unchanging, isolated essence because of this very dependence upon a network of causes and conditions from which they cannot be separated. Such theory resonates both with the findings of contemporary neuroscience and with the postmodern insistence upon contextuality and difference. Each person and thing is, at the same time, dependent, contingent, and determined by causes and conditions both environmental and cultural, uniquely individual and unrepeatable.

The no-self of Buddhism refers to the lack of some unchanging essential self, but does not deny a contingent transactional processual self, or one based on processes, such as thinking, feeling, and acting, rather than product. Buddhism posits sufficient free will to allow for intentional practices to augment awareness, to foster wholesome thought and action, and to defuse unhealthy reactions. Beyond this we must return again to intention—in this case the intention of dharma, which is the search for liberation. Outside this, Buddhism is little concerned about free will.

For Buddhism is not concerned with ontology, or indeed with knowledge for its own sake. Such are questions that the Buddha refused to answer. What Buddhism is centrally concerned with is a path to liberation and the end of suffering through realigning our experience in accordance with the way things are, rather than the way we tend to misperceive them.

It suggests that the way to change our experience is through understanding that experience. To this end it has undertaken centuries of first-person exploration of experience that may now helpfully come into dialogue with the West's superior third-person research.”

PS. give the link a little time to kick in

:twocents: :twocents:
« Last Edit: September 06, 2012, 02:40:12 pm by francis, Reason: give the link a little time to kick in »
"Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realises it is water." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #8 on: September 07, 2012, 01:40:35 am »
I'm in full agreement as far as using Buddhism in therapy. The only problem I have with the model right now is that most therapist have no clue how to teach their clients meditation, let alone get most of them to post-therapy.

I went on a Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy day out of interest, and it turned out that the therapist leading the day had little personal experience of mindfulness or meditation practice, it was more like a set of techniques they'd learned and were passing on.  It turned out that most of the people attending had already done the training, but had not really used it day-to-day with their clients.  Some commented that their clients couldn't use the techniqes anyway because their concentration wasn't up to it.


Offline Lobster

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2012, 03:40:45 am »
cognitive therapy and ideas of reframing used in NLP
are excellent tools.
The fruit bat (not sure what the correct term is) would not benefit from a sadhana or meditation
at present. Buddhism is a preventitive tool and to use it now would be unskilful.

People in crisis are the traditional reserve of the mahasiddahs.
These crazy wisdom adepts are half loon and half enlightened - with another half reserved
for bodhicitta . . .

Make the ego stable and rounded
otherwise you might be building a raft out of nagas . . .

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2012, 05:59:55 am »
What is the essential difference between Buddhism and Psychotherapy?  Both seem to be about changing how we see things.

Offline Lobster

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #11 on: September 09, 2012, 07:37:10 am »
Psychotherapy makes you well.
Even when well, Buddhism takes you further
still.  ;D

Offline santamonicacj

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #12 on: September 09, 2012, 10:18:28 am »
What is the essential difference between Buddhism and Psychotherapy?  Both seem to be about changing how we see things.
When asked the same question years ago, Kalu R. said, "If you practice psychology you become a psychologist. If you practice Buddhism you become a Buddha."

So I guess the question the becomes, "What is the difference between a psychologist and a Buddha?"
Warning: I'm enough of a fundamentalist Tibet style Buddhist to believe that for the last 1,000 years Tibet has produced a handful of enlightened masters in every generation. I do not ask that YOU believe it, but it will greatly simplify conversations if you understand that about me. Thanks.

Offline daka

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #13 on: September 09, 2012, 12:18:42 pm »
I used to be a practising Psychologist.  Then I decided to learn about meditation and attended a course called "Transforming the Mind"  given by a monk who used to be a Psychologist.  The course was held in the University district and the room was filled with academics, Social workers, Psychologists among other "Illuminati" in the neighborhood.  The monk broke us into groups of eight and asked us to discuss what is the "mind".  One member from each group would provide a synthesis of the group's conclusion.  I was horrified and deeply embarrassed, and humbled.  I charged people a lot of money to understand and change and control their minds but I could NOT give a definition.  Apparently my university studies missed this very important point.  The monk went on to give us Buddha's definition of the mind and I spent many years trying to wrap my mind around that definition.

I see no significant difference between Buddhism and Psychology.  I think they both intend to understand and control and develop the mind, improve relationships, increase happiness and solve life's problems.  Buddhism does this perfectly.  Psychology does this less than perfectly.  Some Psychologists however do this less imperfectly and can be helpful (especially when the person is not benefiting from Buddhist teachings).  In my opinion there is a field of Psychology called Phenomenological Psychology  "The Interpreted World" (written by Ernesto Spinelli) which is  close to the "Emptiness" teachings of Buddha.  Gestalt Therapy can also be very meditative and encourage mindfulness.. a moment-to-moment increased awareness of internal and external phenomena.  One of the big dangers of Psychotherapy (especially for those who are not receiving Buddha's teachings) is that delusions may be actually encouraged;  the "I" is heightened and people can be encouraged to "take care of their own needs" ( enhancing self-cherishing. )

Some of these Psychotherapists who are also Buddhists are worth listening to;  Marc Levine wrote a book called Buddhism and Psychotherapy.  I enjoyed it many years ago.  One thing that he said which has stayed with me is that we all have addictions (alcohol, food, computers etc etc.) but we also have a "meta-addiction" which is our addiction to our mind.  I used to specialize in addictions so I was delighted to read and understand his theory about our meta-addiction.

Cheers

daka
"....since beginningless time, we have made a big mistake"

Offline Spiny Norman

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Re: Blending Buddhism And Psychotherapy
« Reply #14 on: September 10, 2012, 01:49:49 am »
So I guess the question the becomes, "What is the difference between a psychologist and a Buddha?"

It seems that both psychology and Buddhism are concerned with understanding the mind.  Maybe one difference is that psychology aims to develop a healthier sense of "I", while Buddhism challenges the assumption of an "I".

 


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