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Bear Psychology Podcast

Dr. Anna Baranowsky is a Canadian Clinical Psychologist, CEO of the Traumatology Institute, Founder and President of the Board at Trauma Practice. She is the author of two books on trauma, numerous courses to help train professionals in trauma mental health and the developer of the Trauma Recovery Program for Self-Guided trauma care. She works with trauma survivors and those with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) on post-traumatic growth and recovery.

Through her work she believes that when we share, dialogue and feel supported, it provides a powerful foundation for forward movement in our understanding and the care needed. In her own words "I have found that the most profound changes occur when a person truly feels heard and understood - I like to think of it as deeply BEARING WITNESS to life evolving. We can feel incredibly stuck when we live with our fears, stressors and troubles in isolation."

Dr.Baranowsky is the host of the Bear Psychology Show, focusing on bearing witness to Evolving Mood, Mind, Health. Her talks revolve around recovery, relationships, work and life adventures.

She is dedicated to assisting organizations and health professionals who help trauma survivors to ensure a trauma informed lens of care can grow in community health networks. With that vision in 1998, the Traumatology Institute Canada (TIC) was established. TIC has trained thousands of individuals nationally and internationally.

Dr. Baranowsky serves on the board of directors of the Academy of Traumatology and is a Board Certified Expert in Traumatic Stress through the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress and is recognized by The National Center for Crisis Management. She has published in the area of Post-Traumatic Stress, Compassion Fatigue, and therapeutic relationships (the Silencing Response).

Copyright:  Dr. Anna Baranowsky, 2020

Mar 25, 2021

Transpersonal Psychology is the section of psychological study that addresses spiritual or transcendent elements of personal experience.  The idea of our transpersonal lives is that which encompasses or goes beyond our typical and practical daily lives and into wider or unexplained aspects of what we may encounter in life. 

This may include peak or mystical experiences, spiritual crisis (in which typical elements of life are no longer sufficient to establish a sense of meaning) and expanded perceptions of life (i.e., who or what we are).

Transpersonal psychology addresses our highest potential or evolutionary states of being that may transcend the ego drivers and ordinary states of consciousness.

We hope you will join us as we explore this fascinating topic with our special guest Steven Taylor! He is a Transpersonal Psychologist University professor and author who has written 13 books on the topic of spiritual growth and emergence.  His extraordinary depth of understanding of this topic and many years of experience delving into this topic have formed a body of work that helps to elevate and inspire.  His work goes beyond what we buy, our education, even specific religious backgrounds, and rather into how we profoundly connect to each other and our planet.  

His work shines hope on a time that has led many to feel destabilized and unsatisfied.

His most recent book The Clear Light is an exploration of Spiritual Reflections and Meditations illustrating our ultimate connection with each other and the world around us, and beyond.  His book Spiritual Science addresses the importance of our spiritual growth in making sense of the larger world around us, and is grounded in science.  My favorite is The Leap, which covers stories of individuals unfolding in their own spiritual growth, revealing the mystery that weaves us together as beings on this complicated life journey.

Certainly, when it comes to serious life events and trauma, a well-developed spiritual life can help us navigate the darkest of times.  Dr. Emma Bragdon, author and "spiritual emergence" coach has her own heart wrenching and traumatic life experiences.  She used spiritual practices including meditation to face the suicide of her mother, followed within a year by her father, the end of her marriage and suicide of her employer. 

She explained that "without meditation and my connection to a meaningful spiritual community ... I likely would have shipwrecked and fallen into the deeps ... a very human response to total overwhelm."

One of the earliest Transpersonal Psychologists was William James (1842 to 1910) who described the experience of oneness!  James said "a great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices".  He captured the struggle of our beliefs with realizations that remain important today.  He also recognized that "The world we see that seems so insane is the result of a belief system that is not working.  To perceive the world differently, we must be willing to change our belief system, let the past slip away, expand our sense of now, and dissolve the fear in our minds."  This idea that we are more than our beliefs is good medicine even today, more than 100 years after his death.

So let's dive into this discussion to better understand what Transpersonal Psychology is and how your Spiritual Emergence can be a time of healing and integration.

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