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Supporting a Buddhist Path with Psychological and Psychoanalytic Insight

Residential Program
Dates: Nov 15, 2024 - Nov 18, 2024
Days: Friday - Monday
Number of Nights: 3 nights

Instructor(s): Barry Magid and Max Erdstein

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Program Description:

Buddhism and Western psychology each offer a framework for understanding and relieving human suffering. As Buddhism takes root in the West, these two disciplines are becoming ever more intertwined and integrated, as exemplified by mindfulness-based psychotherapy and psychologically-trained Dharma teachers. What wisdom can Dharma bring to the paradigm of psychological health and healing? What insights can Western psychology offer us as we walk the Buddhist path?

This weekend program will look at the path of Dharma through a psychological and psychoanalytic lens. What does the nature of our spiritual seeking reveal about our psychological self? How might our approach to practice, teachers, and awakening collude with our own seen and unseen psychological needs? Is it ever possible, or even wise, to disentangle the psychological and the spiritual? Topics to explore include motivation to practice, the role of the unconscious, desire and attachment, idealization, traumatic dissociation, and the nature of psychological and dharmic insight.

Noble Silence:
Noble silence will be observed following each evening session through breakfast the following morning.

Experience Level:
Suitable for beginning and experienced practitioners.

Cancellation Policy:
This policy applies to all residential and Path programs. Please note cancellation fees are at most $50 for those receiving financial assistance. Prior to six weeks before the program start date, cancellation fees are $50 for all programs more than two nights and $25 for programs two nights or less. 50% of your deposit is forfeited if you cancel between two and six weeks of the program start date. 100% of your deposit is forfeited if you cancel less than two weeks before the program start date.

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):
  • Barry Magid he has been teaching Zen for over 20 years, having received Dharma Transmission from Charlotte Joko Beck. A practicing psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, he has been at the forefront of integrating Zen and psychodynamic theory, and has explored the pitfalls of emotional bypass and dissociation that all too often warp Buddhist practice. He is the author of “Nothing is Hidden: The Psychology of Zen Koans.”

  • Max Erdstein teaches at the Insight Meditation Center and the Insight Retreat Center. He is trained as a teacher by Gil Fronsdal. Max has practiced Vipassana and Zen in America, Japan, Thailand, and Burma. He received lay ordination from Sojun Mel Weitsman at the Berkeley Zen Center. Max completed the Spirit Rock/IMS Dharma teacher training program and trained in Buddhist chaplaincy with the Sati Center. With Gil he taught the first weeklong retreat at IRC in November 2012. Max holds an AB degree from Stanford and worked at Google for five years. He is a husband and father of two girls.