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Compassion & Working with Difficult Emotions

Online Program
Dates: Jul 06, 2023 - Jul 20, 2023

Instructor(s): Pilar Jennings

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Course Description:

In this three-session online program, we will explore the role of compassion in the Buddhist and psychotherapeutic traditions with an emphasis on our emotions. In the West, many people pursue Buddhist spiritual practice in order to better understand and heal their relationship to powerful and challenging emotions, including anger, despair, envy, and fear. Similarly, most people who pursue psychological treatment have struggled with these emotions along with feelings of depression and anxiety. In both traditions, there are far-ranging and divergent methods for responding to the suffering of our emotional lives predicated on the ability to care about emotional suffering and respond with patience and skill. We will read Buddhist commentaries on the critical role of compassion in restoring our well-being, alongside psychoanalytic authors who emphasized compassion as a central healing modality in clinical work, including Sandor Ferenczi, Bernard Brandchaft, and Donna Orange.

July 6th: Anxiety & Anger

July 13th: Despair & Depression

July 20th: Desire & Envy

Watch an invitation by Pilar on YouTube.

Experience Level:
Suitable for beginning and experienced practitioners.

Online Schedule:
This program is hosted on Zoom and closed captions are available. You can check the time of the group sessions in your timezone here: https://www.worldtimebuddy.com. The schedule of Zoom meetings for this program (shown in US Eastern Time) is as follows:

Meeting Times: Thursdays 6:30-8:00 PM

Meeting Dates: July 6, 13, 20

Please note that sessions will be recorded and will be available within 48 hours of each session for courses and 48 hours of the final session for retreats and events. These recordings are not downloadable. Retreat recordings will be available for 2 weeks and event recordings will be available indefinitely.

Cancellation Policy:
Registration fees for online programs are nonrefundable after the program start date. Cancellations prior to the program start date will incur a $25 cancellation fee. For intensive, application-based programs, the cancellation fee is $50.

As we work to become a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive community, we invite feedback/suggestions you may have regarding ways that we can make participation in the program more accessible and welcoming. Please email us at contact@buddhistinquiry.org.
    About the Instructor(s):
  • Dr. Pilar Jennings is a psychoanalyst based in New York City with a focus on the clinical applications of Buddhist meditation practice. She has been a Buddhist practitioner for 40 years; a teacher of Tibetan Buddhism in the Sakya lineage; a Visiting Lecturer at Union Theological Seminary; Columbia University; and a faculty member of the Nalanda Institute for Contemplative Science. Her publications have included "East of Ego: The Intersection of Narcissism and Buddhist Meditation Practice," "I've Been Waiting for you: Reflections on Analytic Pain," “Imagery and Trauma: The Psyche’s Push for Healing,” and Mixing Minds: The Power of Relationship in Psychoanalysis and Buddhism released through Wisdom Publications. Her most recent book: To Heal a Wounded Heart: On the Transformative Power of Buddhism & Psychotherapy in Action, is a psychoanalytic memoir exploring her entry into clinical work as a practicing Buddhist.