The Intersection of Buddhist Psychology/Mindfulness & Gestalt Therapy: Applications for Clinical Practice

Friday May 24, 2019

10 am - 4:30 pm - Lakewood Center 368 S. State St. Lake Oswego, OR Breakfast & Networking at 9 am; Lunch included in workshop fee. 5 hrs, CEUs approved by NASW.

Presenters: Eva Gold, PsyD, Stephen Zahm, PhD

Workshop Description

Clinicians of diverse orientations want to bring Buddhist psychology’s wisdom and the power of mindfulness to their clinical work. However, Buddhist psychology’s universal understanding does not provide an individual/relational psychological perspective, and mindfulness is not psychotherapy. In this workshop we will look at how Gestalt therapy offers a bridge, with its compatible, holistic theoretical and methodological frame that translates essential aspects of Buddhist psychology views and mindfulness methods into the “how to” of a relational psychotherapy process.   

Laying out the convergent views and methods of these two systems will establish the ground for focusing in on Gestalt therapy’s understanding of the paradoxical nature of change, and the power in staying with “what is” in order to increase awareness, looking at how Gestalt therapy method supports the therapist in maintaining a present focus, and using phenomenological inquiry to attend directly to embodied experience--all essential elements of mindfulness--within a dialogic relational model.

We will also look at how meditation in and outside of sessions, along with other aspects of the Buddhist psychology path, including the perspective on pain and suffering, can be incorporated in a Buddhist Psychology informed Gestalt Therapy (BPGT) approach.

In addition to didactic presentation/discussion, we will offer guided meditation, a paired exercise, and demonstration to allow participants’ learning to emerge from their own direct experience and observation.

Objectives:  those participating in this workshop will be able to:

  • Describe how each of Gestalt therapy’s philosophical foundations is also seen in Buddhist psychology/mindfulness, and explain how each informs clinical practice. 

  • Explain Gestalt therapy’s understanding of the paradoxical nature of change and state how this understanding informs clinical interventions.

  • Describe how Gestalt therapy and Buddhist psychology’s convergent views of human nature, what causes suffering, and what is curative can inform psychotherapy interventions.

  • Explain the importance of being with “what is” to increase embodied awareness, and be able to use a Gestalt experiment to do this with a client.

Registration Options
Early Reg. Fee ends 5/17/19

As an introduction to perspectives explored in the book by Drs. Gold and Zahm : Buddhist Psychology and Gestalt Therapy Integrated: Psychotherapy for the 21st Century and to the approach to clinical intervention to be presented in this workshop, you may want to hear Dr. Gold’s presentation in a podcast about the book. Link to podcast:  https://somaticperspectives.com/gold/

Steven Zahm PhD, Eva Gold PsyD

Steven Zahm PhD, Eva Gold PsyD

Eva Gold, PsyD is the co-author of Buddhist Psychology and Gestalt Therapy Integrated: Psychotherapy for the 21st Century published in 2018. She is a licensed psychologist in private practice with 40+ years of clinical experience, currently providing individual psychotherapy, consultation and supervision. She is founding co-director and senior faculty of Gestalt Therapy Training Center—Northwest, which has offered continuing education for mental health professionals since 1996. Dr. Gold recently retired from an Adjunct Assistant Professor position at Pacific University School of Professional Psychology where she taught for 15 years. She has authored and co-authored articles for professional journals as well as book chapters on Gestalt therapy theory and practice. A student of Buddhist psychology and an Insight meditation practitioner for nearly two decades, she presents and trains nationally and internationally on the intersection of Buddhist psychology/mindfulness and Gestalt therapy.

Stephen Zahm, PhD is the co-author of Buddhist Psychology and Gestalt Therapy Integrated: Psychotherapy for the 21st Century published in 2018. He is a licensed psychologist in private practice with 45+ years of clinical experience, currently providing individual and couples therapy as well as group and individual consultation and supervision. He is founding co-director and senior faculty of Gestalt Therapy Training Center—Northwest, which has offered continuing education for mental health professionals since 1996. Dr. Zahm recently retired from an Adjunct Professor position at Pacific University School of Professional Psychology where he taught Gestalt therapy as well as group and couples therapy, and supervised interns for 37 years. He has authored and co-authored articles for professional journals as well as book chapters on Gestalt therapy theory and practice. A student of Buddhist psychology and an Insight meditation practitioner for many years, he presents and trains nationally and internationally on the intersection of Buddhist psychology/mindfulness and Gestalt therapy.

Call 503-222-0332 for information about AMHA-OR or this workshop. Cancellation requires 48 hour notice. Refund policy: $20 processing fee for all cancelled registrations.