The Boulder Mindfulness Conference “Buddhism & Psychotherapy: The Art Of Counseling”

Jack Kornfield, Ph.D.

It was an awesome day. . . . Never disappointing is the wisdom and compassion of Jack Kornfield’s teachings. I heard him at the Buddhist and Psychotherapy conference in Boulder this past weekend. He is witty, charming, creative, funny and full of light while not dismissing the impact of the pain and darkness of those with whom he works. Kornfield weaves tales of healing those with AIDS, those in prison, young gang members, and others through the telling of their stories and cultivating empowering initiation rituals. With a sense of humor, poems, and various excerpts from writers and other teachers, Kornfield reinforces the usefulness of integrating mindfulness practice with psychotherapy. He reminds us how easy it is in our modern everyday busy world to forget how to pay attention. When we quiet the mind and open the heart, we gain access to the mystery of life, and discover who we are and what really matters in our lives. This shift from being identified with pain to knowledge of something vaster than ourselves helps us to minimize suffering and increase happiness, clarity, confidence and vitality. Stepping out of the story, we gain breakthroughs, shifting from painful, negative states to healthy, positive states of mind. Kornfield also made it clear that it helps to have a guide, that we are in this together.

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