What is Contemplative Psychotherapy?

Contemplative Psychotherapy may be said to have two parents: the 2,500-year-old wisdom tradition of Buddhism and the clinical traditions of Western Psychology, especially the Humanistic school. Like all offspring it has much in common with both of its parents and yet is uniquely itself at the same time. From Buddhism comes the practice of mindfulness/ awareness meditation, together with a highly sophisticated understanding of the functioning of the mind in sanity and in confusion. From Western psychology come the investigation of the stages of human development, a precise language for discussing mental disturbance and the intimate method of working with others known as "psychotherapy."

The root teaching of the Contemplative Counseling Psychotherapy program is the notion of "brilliant sanity." This means that we all have within us a natural dignity and wisdom. Our basic nature is characterized by clarity, openness and compassion. This wisdom may be temporarily covered over, but nonetheless, it is there and may be cultivated. Practitioners of Contemplative Psychotherapy become expert at recognizing sanity within even the most confused and distorted states of mind and are trained to nurture this sanity in themselves and in their clients.

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