Psychotherapy must remain an obstinate attempt of two people to arrive at a recovery of the wholeness of being human through the relationship between them.
My approach is based on my initial training in Counselling, Psychodynamic and Gestalt Therapy, Perinatal Psychology and over two decades of personal therapy and apprenticeship with my teacher and supervisor, Psychotherapist, Andrew Feldmár, whose main influence is his teacher, famous Psychiatrist R.D.Laing. Auspiciously, my university thesis was in Psychiatry, precisely on R.D. Laing, so it was a full circle moment, meeting Feldmár in 1996, after moving to Canada.
Given my extensive training in Yoga, my strength is working with the somatic methods, as adjuncts to the therapeutic process. If requested, I offer meditation instruction, subtle breathing practices, gentle embodied movement and body work.
As in Buddhist teaching, healing is not just our birth-right (Karma) but it could be our spiritual pursuit of freedom (Dharma) or otherwise an enslavement, endless suffering and existential death, just as Laing insinuates in a quote below. We can decide to pursue our freedom of choice or leave it up to faith.
I practice psychedelic body-mind counselling and post psychedelic integration practice, as a form of a harm reduction, as an adjunct to my counselling practice, and under the supervision of my teacher and elder. To find out more information on those who experienced psychedelic assisted therapy, you can look at the interview with the author and journalist Michael Pollan, or mycologist Paul Stemetc. Here is a conversation with some leading researchers. To hear more about my lineage and approach, you can look at is my interview with MAPS Canada.
For further details of my practice principles and references, look below.
First session is on-line and 90 min long, $220.50
I practice inclusion, so If after the initial session money is the only obstacle to continue counselling, the fees may be re-negotiated. Please read our attending and cancellation policy bellow.
Madness need not be all breakdown. It may also be break-through. It is potential liberation and renewal as well as enslavement and existential death.
As in the lineage of my teacher Feldmár and Laing, my approach is rooted in interpersonal social phenomenology, equal presence, moment-to-moment awareness, and the practice of non-harm, Ahimsa (Sanskrit: अहिंसा.), which is the same principle as the Hippocratic Oath of “Do not harm.”
Instead of treating mental illness diagnosis, I pay attention to what arrises in the body memory, lingering within clients ambiguity and suffering and expressed in a relationship in-between.
This relating can originate as early as our own conception, including the relationship of our parents, or, as politics and ethics passed down epigenetically though our ancestral line, culture or education.
The one common denominator of all the variety of mental illness described in DSM, is trauma.
~Judith Lewis Herman
Why social phenomenology versus medical models?
Known as a radical psychiatrist (as per Latin Radix – root), as well as a Yoga and meditation practitioner, R.D. Laing spoke of mental illness not as a medical problem, but a problem occurring in the way we relate to one another.
Therefore the issue is more ethical (how we treat each other) and political (distribution of power), rather than something being inherently wrong within.
Not that long ago, however, trauma (PTSD) is considered to be a brain disease and treated as such (lobotomy, electric shock therapy etc.). Observing this, Laing considered mental illness diagnosis represented by the DSM a dangerous disambiguation. He went as far as saying that this, most popular among psychiatry and wide, diagnostic dictionary is equivalent to the manual of hunting witches from 1487, written by a Catholic Clergyman and Inquisitor.
Where can one look for further research?
As an award winning medical journalist Robert Whitaker, specialized in mental illness research, he writes and speaks extensively on the futility of the medical approach to mental disease. Similarly, Psychiatrist and Academic, Joanna Moncrieff in her extensive research offers an analysis of the pervasive myth of the commonly spoked chemical imbalance of the brain. It is sobering to look at the on-going research of the side effects of the psychopharmacology and their addictive quality, which may be a strong contributor of the current alarming opioid crisis.
Research also shows that this approach to mental health crisis is not being resolved, in fact, the statistics only reflect its rapid rise, as over 8 million people, only in US, take prescribed psychoactive medications and the alarming statements that, only in the last ten years, 20-35 % of children’s are being diagnosed and majority of them medically treated (reference; Whitaker and Moncrieff).
What is, in this approach, the purpose of the mental and emotional healing process and its purpose in human society?
False self is for surviving. True self is for living and thriving.
Laing says that, so called civilized humans are generally psycho-phobic, terrified of their mind, and their soul becoming alive.
Healing, as an embodiment process means befriending our Psyche (ψῡχή = psykhē/psūkhē), our Soul, which etymologically has the same Indo-European root to breathing, relaxing, being.
For psychiatrist Carl Gustav Jung, the deepest healing is the very pinnacle of spiritual experience, depicted as the Greek Hieros Gamos ( ἱερὸς γάμος,) the sacred marriage of our psyche, Soul (Anima) with the Spirit (Animus).
For the Radical therapist, the phenomenology of healing itself can be depicted, as in Hegelian language, a process of emancipation (etymology: verb eman·ci·pate \i-ˈman(t)-sə-ˌpāt\. : to free (someone) from someone/control or power over.) Therefore, it is a daring process of decolonizing our psyche and our world.
Hence, the process and structure of healing itself cannot be achieved individually ( i. e. “working on oneself”). It can only be cultivated and come out of the communion, based on the practice of Love, non-violence, safety, solidarity, equity and care.
:*all prices include GST
WORKING HOURS, IN-PERSON ATTENDING AND CANCELLATION POLICY
No Refund, Exchange or Transfer of sessions.
I require that you do not come if you have any symptoms.
If you are scheduled in-person and have symptoms, the sessions will be done on line instead unless cancelled on time.
I require all my sessions to be paid in advance. Hence after scheduled intake session, I require payment to be sent two business days in advance to secure your spot.
My regular hours are Mon-Fri 9-5 p.m.
Please note that a minimum of 2 business days (48 hr Mon-Fr) is required in writing, by e-mail, for changing or cancellation of your scheduled appointment, otherwise the full amount will be charged.
The cause of missing an appointment is of no consequence. If you give me less than required notice, and I succeed in finding someone to take your appointment, your fee will be waived.
This policy is not punitive; it is to cushion me from the vicissitudes of your life.
Disclaimer: The practices we offer are not meant to be medical services. If in doubt, please consult your medical practitioner.
My practice should not be construed as advocating for the use of psychedelic or any illegal substances. I do not suggest, provide or administer such substances. I am present in my professional capacity and harm reduction. I do not assume any responsibility for any physical, psychological, legal or any other consequences from the use of these substances.
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