Item ID : 2228

Teacher Collegers Columbia University: Spirituality & Mind/Body Institute

Item ID : 2228

Teacher Collegers Columbia University: Spirituality & Mind/Body Institute

The Spirituality and Mind-Body Institute is listed under Columbia Teacher College’s counseling and Clinical Psychology department. It “supports training and research for the development of psychotherapists, healers, scholars and activists. Graduate students build knowledge of research supporting spiritual and mind-body practices as well as hands on clinical training. Research within the Institute examines the direct effects of spirituality on thriving in youth, as protective against mental illness and as a source of resilience in building respectful relationships and personal meaning and purpose. Generous funding for the Spirituality and Mind-Body Institute comes from corporate and family foundations.”

A New York Times article by Otterman (2012) adds a number of details about this program. The initiative began as a Masters program and in January 2012 has become an institution. While there are other institutes in the US that explore similar issues within psychology, (such as California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco, Sofia University, and the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, in Palo Alto, California), Columbia’s is the first Ivy-league University to open such institute. In the semester of Fall 2012 there were 186 students in the program (about a third of the Masters students in Clinical psychology program at TC). Prof. Lisa Miller who directs the program claims she trains “spiritual psychologists” fostering love and connection as a source of healing. She treats “gut feelings” as hard data. “We are infinite and evolving and sacred,” she said, and though her words might not sound academic, academia, she said, “has been remarkably open to this language.” The article describes a meditation session carried within the Institute using a Tibetan Bowl yet not mentioning the word Buddhism even once.

To learn more about Spirituality & Mind/Body Institute click here. 

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