Ecotherapy: Healing with Nature in Mind

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In the 14 years since Sierra Club Books published Theodore Roszak, Mary E. Gomes, and Allen D. Kanner’s groundbreaking anthology, Ecopsychology: Restoring the Earth, Healing the Mind, the editors of this new volume have often been asked: Where can I find out more about the psyche-world connection? How can I do hands-on work in this area? Ecotherapy was compiled to answer these and other urgent questions.

Ecotherapy, or applied ecopsychology, encompasses a broad range of nature-based methods of psychological healing, grounded in the crucial fact that people are inseparable from the rest of nature and nurtured by healthy interaction with the Earth. Leaders in the field, including Robert Greenway, and Mary Watkins, contribute essays that take into account the latest scientific understandings and the deepest indigenous wisdom. Other key thinkers, from Bill McKibben to Richard Louv to Joanna Macy, explore the links among ecotherapy, spiritual development, and restoring community.

As mental-health professionals find themselves challenged to provide hard evidence that their practices actually work, and as costs for traditional modes of psychotherapy rise rapidly out of sight, this book offers practitioners and interested lay readers alike a spectrum of safe, effective alternative approaches backed by a growing body of research.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Psychotherapist Buzzell and psychology professor Chalquist (Terrapsychologist) gather 29 contributors to explore traditional psychotherapy at the intersection of the human and the environment. This next-generation update of the Sierra Club's 1995 Ecopsychology finds one of the editors of that volume, Theodore Rosak, comparing society's "relentless pursuit of money" with Aztec "blood sacrifice," and urging all psychologists to challenge the prevailing ethos. Mary E. Gomes, another editor of Ecopsychology, considers an extention of the community circle to "all that lives and all that has left this world," treating lost species "as we would a friend, a family member, a beloved." Buzzell explores the precepts of ecotherapy (probing "human-nature" as well as "human-human" relationships) and its questions ("Are there animals in your life? Special environments where your heart opens and life feels right?"). Chalquist provides an overview of ecotherapy research while exploring the idea that a missing "psychology of homecoming" is the result of an artificial divide between "scientific knowledge" and "indigenous wisdom." Other sections explore ecotherapy in practice, helping couples bond to nature, treating animal trauma, and the healing methods of wilderness therapy.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781578051618
  • Publisher: Counterpoint Press
  • Publication date: 5/12/2009
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 814,096
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 11

Foreword David W. Orr 13

Introduction Psyche and Nature in a Circle of Healing Linda Buzzell Craig Chalquist 17

1 The Greening Of Psychotherapy 23

Psychotherapy as if the World Mattered Larry Robinson 24

A Psyche as Big as the Earth Theodore Roszak 30

Why and How Do Therapists Become Ecotherapists? Mary-Jayne Rust 37

Asking Different Questions: Therapy for the Human Animal Linda Buzzell 46

Resisting the Juggernaut: The Wild Frontier of Ecopsychology Richard Bruce Anderson 55

Ecopsychology as Radical Praxis Andy Fisher 60

Ecotherapy Research and a Psychology of Homecoming Craig Chalquist 69

2 Ecotherapy In Practice - Working From The Inside Out 83

Beyond the "Big Lie": How One Therapist Began to Wake Up Sara Harris 84

The Path of Happiness: Integrating Nature into Therapy for Couples and Families George W. Burns 92

Embodying Sentience Amanda Leigh Morrison 104

Opening to the Other Lane K. Conn Sarah A. Conn 111

Eco-Dreaming: The Whale's Tale Lauren Z. Schneider 116

The Waking-Up Syndrome Sarah Anne Edwards Linda Buzzell 123

3 Ecotherapy In Practice-Working From The Outside In 131

The Wilderness Experience as Therapy: We've Been Here Before Robert Greenway 132

Tailoring Nature Therapy to the Client John Scull 140

Horses, Humans, and Healing Neda DeMayo 149

Transformation through Service: Trans-species Psychology and Its Implications for Ecotherapy G. A. Bradshaw 157

Gardens that Heal Elizabeth R. Messer Diehl 166

In Praise of Sweet Darkness Shepherd Bliss 174

4 Community As Ecotherapy 185

Human Nature, Community, and "Deep Economy" Bill McKibben 186

The Small Group as Ecotherapy:Building a Culture of Connection Cecile Andrews 192

The Psychology of Peak Oil and Climate Change Richard Heinberg 197

Children and Nature: The Great Disconnect Richard Louv 205

Dreaming a New Paradigm Meredith Sabini 211

Creating Restorative Ecotherapeutic Practices Mary Watkins 219

5 Ecospirituality And Ecotherapy 237

The Greening of the Self Joanna Macy 238

Altars of Extinction Mary Gomes 246

A Shamanic Reflection on Water Malidoma P. Somé 251

Green Psychology, Shamanism, and Therapeutic Rituals Ralph Metzner 256

Dream Tending and Tending the World Stephen Aizenstat 262

Healing and the Great Work K. Lauren de Boer 270

Notes, References, and Resources 277

Bibliography of Ecotherapy Research Craig Chalquist 296

About the Contributors 306

About the Editors 312

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