Somatic Psychotherapy Institute
The Somatic Psychotherapy Institute is a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering an integrated approach to health and well-being, one that integrates mind and body.
Mindfulness and Psychotherapy
Guiding Principles & Embodied Practices of Buddhist Psychology
Application to Clinical Practice (Clinical Supervision)
September 2019 – June 2020
Alternate Wednesdays 9 am – 11 pm
Wellspring Center, 39 Church St, Hardwick, VT
At the core of our being there is an indestructible “tender soft spot,” a place of openness through which life moves. It is the source of our basic goodness. When encountering threatening situations, we instinctively attempt to protect that soft tender spot in the center of our being. Over time, the protective layer becomes the habit of mind that thinks this small hut we have built for ourselves is who we are, and we become disconnected from our wise resourceful center. We forget that the only real safety is found in our innate wisdom and compassion, that the only sure protection for our vulnerability rests in openness.
How do we find our way back to the ground of our being, to the home in our heart? How do we guide others on this journey? Training the mind in the ways of nature is a place to begin. One of the words for mind in Buddhism is citta, which means heart. It is through the heart-mind that we come to know what is true, and trust in this knowing. It is only with the heart that one can see clearly says the Little Prince.
Our approach to psychotherapy is guided by specific principles, which in turn give rise to creative methods. A skillful therapist abides in these principles as a way of being, cultivated over time through intentional study and embodied practice.
The therapeutic process relies on a mature human presence, one that is responsive to the unique situation of each individual. It is a way of being that ensures the effective use of methods and techniques: a nonviolent approach that involves the relational abilities to protect and not manipulate, to give and receive, to be and be with, to harmonize and differentiate, and to touch and liberate. As therapists, we help a client to safely observe themselves more fully, and allow change to come about organically rather than attempting to change their behavior directly. We trust a client’s ability to become self-aware, self-caring and self-responsible, and to become emotionally mature beings.
Trauma, Attachment and the Embodied Mind
A Two-Year Training Program for Professionals
Working with trauma and attachment from a somatic, developmental and relational perspective, the program draws from established psychotherapeutic models and key thinkers in the fields of trauma, attachment and interpersonal neurobiology, developmental psychology and somatic processing, and mind training and Buddhist psychology.
We offer a two-year program of study, divided into eight 5-session terms. Each term focuses on a particular theme, allows time for an experiential and conceptual understanding of the material, and facilitates the skillful application of the material within a therapeutic relationship, including case consultation. Ethical issues inherent in this deep, intimate relational therapeutic work will be addressed in each term.