- August 2, 2018
- 7:00 pm
California Institute of Integral Studies
1453 Mission Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
Early on in her clinical practice, psychoanalyst Pilar Jennings was presented with a particularly difficult case: a six-year-old girl who, traumatized by loss, had stopped speaking. Challenged by the limitations of her training to respond effectively to the isolating effect of childhood trauma, Dr. Jennings took the unconventional path of inviting her friend Lama Pema—a kindly Tibetan Buddhist monk who experienced his own life-shaping trauma at a very young age—into their sessions. In the warm therapeutic space they created, the young girl slowly began to heal.
Dr. Jennings new book To Heal a Wounded Heart: The Transformative Power of Buddhism and Psychotherapy in Action presents this healing journey taken by Dr. Jennings, Lama Pema, and the young girl as a fascinating case study at the intersection of Western psychology and Buddhist teachings. It is a story for therapists, parents, Buddhists, or any of us who hold out the hope that even the deepest childhood wounds can be the portal to our capacity to love and be loved.
Join Sergio Rodriguez-Castillo for an in depth conversation with Dr. Jennings about her experience writing this inspiring story as well as her life and work as a mindful psychoanalyst and teacher.
Pilar Jennings, PhD, is a professor of psychiatry and religion at the Union Theological Seminary and a lecturer at Columbia University. She is also a visiting lecturer at Weill Cornell University School of Medicine in their newly implemented Integrative Health concentration. Through this program associated with the Nalanda Institute of Contemplative Science, Dr. Jennings teaches medical students about mindfulness and psychodynamic techniques to be utilized for their own stress reduction and for their patients' increased well-being. She is also a psychoanalyst with a focus on the clinical applications of Buddhist meditation; she has been working with patients and their families through the Harlem Family Institute since 2004. She is the author of Mixing Minds: The Power of Relationship in Psychoanalysis and Buddhism.
Sergio Rodriguez-Castillo is a full-time professor in the Integral Counseling Psychology program at CIIS. He has more than twenty years of experience in the legal and consulting world, the public sector, and academia combined with solid international academic credentials: JD Magna Cum Laude from Queretaro's State University in Mexico; LLM in International Economic Law from the University of Warwick, in the United Kingdom; certification in Leadership and Psycho-Spirituality by the Sadhana Institute in Lonavla, India; and MA's in Integral Counseling and East-West Psychology by the California Institute of Integral Studies in the US.
Before deciding to focus on psychotherapy and consulting, he worked as an attorney specializing in Intellectual Property, Copyright and Information Technology, being one of the panelists appointed by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to decide on domain name disputes. His program Spirit@Work specializes in providing solutions in the areas of organizational culture, leadership, communications, mindfulness, work-life satisfaction, and meaning and purpose in the workplace. He has helped hundreds of individuals and organizations in the US and Latin America, teaching companies how to create an inspiring environment where employees can flourish as professionals and human beings, enabling them to contribute to their companies, their communities, and the planet.