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Are Most Mentally Ill Not Ill?

Until the 19th century, persons who imitated illness—that is, who claimed to be sick without being able to convince their physicians that they suffered from a bona fide illness—were regarded as faking and called malingerers. Not much has changed today and many still see those who say that they are mental ill as deficient morally […]

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How to Become Self-Motivated

My daughter is a teenager. Like many teenagers, her relationship with her parents is stressed by the divergence of priorities. She will tell me that she will clean her room. She will tell me that she will get her driver’s license. She will tell me that she will do her homework. Being a parent, I […]

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DO EMOTIONS MAKE US? AND WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT

Spend enough time listening to people and one thing becomes very clear: people seem to really be involved with the negative experiences in their lives. Not just the intense, sometimes crippling, life-threatening dramas that can give a person PTSD. Not just the abuses that happen over long periods of time that wear down our psyche. […]

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Do Our Emotions Make Our Decisions?

Standing over the brownie pan in the kitchen a debate rages within, “I shouldn’t have another brownie.” “Perhaps if I just took a little sliver that would be enough.” “Now it is uneven. I’ll just eat the one piece and leave it alone.” At the end of an evening half, if not all, of the […]

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Thrive or Strive: Motivate Change for Happiness

As I am developing this intervention model of Buddhist Therapy, I have had a few people ask how individuals and counselors can help develop change. “Mind precedes things, dominates them, creates them” (Mano pubbangamadhamma mano settha mano maya). ~ Dhammapada The core of change comes from the acknowledgement and understanding of decision-thinking is self-motivated. Even […]

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ReWrite Your Stories and Be Happy

I was on my first silent meditation retreat (the one I witnessed at the Spirit Plant once). I was so excited to enjoy the silence. Share that time with others who were seeking time in quiet reflection and loving kindness. But by the end of the fourth day, I wanted to see misery brought down […]

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Is Fear Good For Us?

A movie-goer sits in a darkened air conditioned square room watching the giant illuminated screen in front of him. At this point he is calm, almost bored as he waits for his entertainment. Soon, the screen is filled with a tiger walking on the African plains. A hunter, unsuspecting, is eating breakfast in a clearing; […]

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Freud and Buddha

BUDDHISM AS A THERAPY INTERVENTION

Over the years , as a Buddhist practitioner and minister; as well as a Licensed Social Worker; I have been very disheartened when I hear people talk about “Buddhist Therapy.” It is because it is never Buddhist AND therapy. When I read the literature over the years, I have seen many great Buddhist scholars talk about […]

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Memory, Mindfulness, and Buddhism

     Last Sunday, we (at the Pittsburgh Buddhist Center) had a great opportunity to meet and learn from Dr. Bhikkhuni Kusuma, a senior Buddhist nun from Sri Lanka. Everybody who came to this event enjoyed her engaging sermon and meditation. Moreover, everybody was impressed to see her energy at the age of 84 to disseminate […]

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Mental Health Buddhism

Can Buddhism Cure Mental Illness?

I am so overjoyed at the growing interest in Buddhism. As a practice, it has been proven over the past 2,600 years that the Buddha truly understood the nature of the world and his enlightened teachings have been the path for countless others to understand the nature of dukkha (discontentment) and how to reduce or […]

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Suicide, Survivors: Buddhism

A dear friend contacted me. Her ex-husband and father of her child had taken his own life. She was feeling isolated and wanted someone to talk to her a bit about the issues she was dealing with. Her now-husband was not relating to her since she was estranged from the ex-husband. We talked strategies for […]

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