"Classical analysis has discovered the grief of the child within the adult, and Self Psychology has discovered the adult's grief within the depths of the child… by this I mean that the grief of the individual child is based on the vague recognition that the future will not be achieved. The entire life cycle is included in the nuclear plan of the self… not fulfilling this plan arises as anticipation by the depressed hopeless child, who turns to achieve pleasure instead of fulfilling the plan" (Heinz Kohut, father and founder of "Self Psychology". From the book "Self Psychology and the Humanities. Thoughts of a new psychoanalytic approach").
Since 2012, I have been offering therapy in a private clinic on Geula Street in Tel Aviv. I offer treatment with children, adolescents and adults, in the spirit of Self Psychology and the Buddhist philosophy and practice in general, and the Mahayana tradition in particular.
I combine psychoanalytical approaches and mindfulness based therapy (MBSR) for strengthening self-esteem, treating depression and anxiety, personality disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD), addiction, post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD), and crisis interventions.
I also work with the Ministry of Defense (Department of Families and Commemoration) and with "Matan Meitar EAP", who provide psychological services for personnel in the business sector, as well as offering therapy through the "ADAM Campus" in the city of Lod.
Primary sources of inspiration in my therapeutic work:
At the very heart of Self Psychology is the release from evil as a way to explain the person, and the courage to return to a vision of faith in the cultivation of self through human solidarity, ethical responsibility and the belief in goodness.
Heinz Kohut, father of the approach, places the term "Tragic Man" at the center of the therapeutic environment. This is a transition from the "guilty person" known in classic psychoanalysis, to the current person: a person who is beyond the impulses that dictate his or her existential struggle with unconscious conflicts, does not give up the longing for recovering oneself from his or her distress, and strives towards a harmonic, cohesive and continuous experience of self.
Self Pychology places empathy and the unique affinity of selfobject relationships in its center, based on empathic immersion of the person in others. These, simply put, create the platform that enables processes of change and transformation to occur.
Tradition says that the Buddha was an ordinary man, "the one who awakened". He had one burning question: where does the all-pervading dissatisfaction come from, and how can it be eased. One could consider the Buddha – who taught approximately 2,500 years ago – the first psychologist. The "Dharma", the doctrine that he taught, is a way of life that is entirely concerned with the path to liberation, the resolution of suffering and discomfort. This is not an abstract contemplation, but a practical doctrine.
In the first sermon given by the Buddha, which is also known as the sermon "that set the wheel of Dharma in motion" and which to this day is still the common basis of all the Buddhist schools, the Buddha taught "The Four Noble Truths", according to which:
1) There is all pervading suffering (Dukkha in Sanskrit);
2) Suffering has causes [to date, western psychology stopped at this point];
3) There is a state of the cessation of suffering;
4) There is a path for liberation from suffering.
This sermon was a cardinal event that instigated one of the most fascinating spiritual movements created by humans. Yet, before lecturing to his students about suffering, the Buddha taught the middle way, and said:
Bhikkhu [monks], one who has gone forth from the householder's life should not indulge in one of the two extremes. What are the two? The longing devoted to sensual pleasures, which are inferior, low, common, ignoble and useless. And the longing for self-affliction, that are painful, ignoble and useless. By avoiding both extremes the Buddha has gained deep realization of the middle way, which opens one's eyes, produces knowledge, and leads to serenity, to direct knowing, to awakening, to Nibbana. And what is the middle way? It is the eightfold middle path: Right View, Right Resolve, Right Speech, Right Conduct, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness, Right Concentration. This is the middle way that the Buddha has attained, and it opens one's eyes, provides knowledge, and leads to serenity, direct perception, awakening, and Nibbana. (Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta: Samyutta Nikaya LVI, 11).
"To study Buddhism is to study the self. To study the self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to be one with everything"
Dogen, Zen Master of the 13th Century.