Overcoming Traumas Large and Small

By Frank Simons

The Meditation Center presents the video lecture series The Science of Mindfulness: A Research-Based Path to Well-Being from Great Courses, Lecture 17, “Overcoming Traumas Large and Small.” Any event that brings up reactions that are stronger than our felt capacity to experience them can become traumatic. Often, we push the feelings out of awareness. We either repress or suppress them. Then, they show up as symptoms. There are many studies that show promise for using mindfulness practice to work through the effects of trauma. Given the number of people who have been affected by trauma, both large and small, it’s nice to know that mindfulness practices can give us a way to work with them. Topic headings this week: Traumatic Experiences; Trauma Large and Small; Using Mindfulness Practice to Engage in Therapeutic Exposure; Processing Trauma. Questions to consider:

1. What makes an experience traumatic? Name a few experiences, whether seemingly serious or not, that you have personally found to be traumatic.

2. During what times in your life have you needed more safety and stability to deal with challenging events? When might you have benefited more from turning toward the sharp points to integrate previously split-off mental contents?

Dr. Ronald D. Siegel is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychology at Harvard Medical School/Cambridge Health Alliance, where he has taught for more than 30 years, and an Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Dr. Siegel is a longtime student of mindfulness practices and serves on the board of directors and faculty of the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy.

There will be a discussion period after the video on Thursday, June 11, at 5:30pm at the Center, Callejón Blanco 4.

Presentations of the Meditation Center are offered without charge. Donations are gratefully accepted.


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