is therapy that integrates Western and Eastern approaches to the
alleviation of psychological distress and suffering and to the
promotion of full and authentic living. This therapy is
aimed at supporting and encouraging clients to discover and walk
their own paths. Progress on these paths is more about
removing obstacles to our basic wholeness than fixing
dysfunction or removing symptoms. These approaches tend to
be more in accord with Eastern
philosophies than with the mechanistic and
medical models that dominate our current healthcare environment.
My therapy style is most
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and the so-called
third wave behavioral therapies (e.g., Dialectical Behavior
Therapy, Functional Analytic Psychotherapy). ACT is a
contemporary cognitive-behavioral therapy shaped by many
influences, including Gestalt psychotherapy, the human potential
movements, and most directly, behavioral analysis.
ACT's roots are firmly in a Western
science of human behavior, though its models and methods readily
mesh with Eastern ideas about human suffering and its
alleviation. I believe this latter aspect of ACT lends it
to be integrated with approaches drawn from Buddhist Psychology
and permits it to provide a strong foundation for a form of
My interest in Buddhist Psychology, and
incorporating mindfulness and contemplative practices into my
psychotherapy, dates back to my graduate training but has
evolved into a far richer and more effective integration only in
recent years. My experience with
ACT, along with a deepening of my own dharma study and practice,
encouraged me to make this shift.
The impact of my interest in
Contemplative Psychotherapy on the actual therapy you receive
depends on your preferences and your presenting concerns.
It is important to note that you need not have any interest in
Eastern philosophies or approaches to do therapy with me and
mindfulness and meditative methods I incorporate are not
religious practices. In fact, for the majority of my
clients, my interest in Buddhist Psychology would not be apparent in session and their therapy
does not look or feel different.
mindfulness and acceptance processes into therapy for many
clients; however this has less to do with my interest in
Buddhist Psychology and is more based on the growing body of
research supporting the effectiveness of these approaches.
Those issues aside, if you have an interest in
meditation and Eastern philosophies, our therapy together may
have a more distinctive East/West and Contemplative
Psychotherapy feel to it.
If you have any questions about these
issues, please do not hesitate to ask. More about my therapy.
My own contemplative practice is most influenced by Zen Buddhism
and by various authors who have begun to articulate uniquely
Western and non-religious iterations of Buddhism (e.g.,
My personal practice informs my
understanding of my clients—both
difficulties and their strengths—and
enhances my ability to be present with them during their crises
You can obtain additional information about my work at the main page for
White Pine Behavioral Health, my private practice in
To learn more or to schedule an
appointment, please contact me at 207-272-8500.
You can read about
Contemplative Psychotherapy at