November 2021

01Nov9:00 AM01May4:00 PMBuddhist Psychology Training 2022Program Dates: January - May 2022; Applications now closed!(November 1) 9:00 AM - (May 1) 4:00 PM Online Teacher(s): Matthew Brensilver, PhD Sold OutOnlineNo prerequisiteOpen

Event Details

The application period is now closed. The program is full.

Dates: Jan – May 2022; Jan 8 & 9 (2 days), Feb 12, March 12, April 9, April 30 & May 1 (2 days).
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Sliding Scale: $450 – $2,000. Code BP1T22.
Continuing Education Credits: 18 CE credits available for $180 for psychologists and California licensed MFTs, LCSWs, LEPs, LPCCs, nurses, and chiropractors, licensed by the APA, California BBS, BRN, or BCE.*

Visit BPT Program page here.

This training is designed for therapists, educators and those in allied fields. Participants are recommended to have attended at least one (1) multi-day residential retreat or multi-day online retreat with an Insight Meditation teacher or community (e.g. Spirit Rock, Insight Meditation Society, Insight Retreat Center, etc.) prior to the start of the training.

Only when one has truly made oneself a patient can one become a healer. In practicing mindfulness meditation and studying Buddhist psychology, we become the patient. So much goodness unfolds from this sincerity. Through our practice, we come to understand ourselves, affirm ourselves, and ultimately, transform ourselves. Our own transformation is then leveraged for the welfare of the people we serve.

The classic description of empathy—to stand in someone else’s shoes—presumes that we already know what it is like to stand in our own shoes. With striking clarity, mindfulness reveals what it’s like to stand in our own experience. The intimacy of this encounter with ourselves provides a basis for deep compassion and accurate empathy. This program is not primarily about learning techniques to add to one’s therapeutic repertoire: it is a recognition that, in an important sense, you are the intervention and cultivation of your own being enhances your effectiveness. Techniques flow from your direct understanding and their power depends on the sincerity of your efforts.

This four-month training for therapists, educators and those in allied fields, will provide an immersion in Buddhist psychology and the meditation practices that illuminate our minds, foster goodness and transform habits that compound suffering. We’ll dive into the scientific research on mindfulness and its increasing prominence in psychotherapeutic interventions exploring data regarding the efficacy of mindfulness and the mechanisms through which mindfulness confers its benefits. The training will examine the convergences and tensions between clinical research and Buddhist psychology and describe ways to integrate mindfulness into treatment. We’ll consider possible contraindications of mindfulness and how to tailor the intervention to individuals. It is an attempt to foster a dialogue between the sacred power of Buddhist practice and the scientific study of health, psychological distress and behavior change. Please join us.

Once accepted into the program, all participants will be given access to Foundational Buddhist Teachings, an online course consisting of five daylong retreats. Students are encouraged to review this course material prior to the class to ensure all participants can join our course with a level of shared understanding regarding foundational Buddhist concepts and terms.

Program training period is January – May 2021. Specific training dates below.
All meeting times are: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time.

  • Jan 8 & 9 (2 days)
  • Feb 12
  • March 12
  • April 9
  • April 30 & May 1 (2 days)

Your participation in this training is important. The cohesion of the group is an important aspect of this training, so participation serves both your own development as well as the group. We ask that you commit to the dates and to participate wholeheartedly.

In addition to course meetings, participants will have opportunities to participate in smaller consult groups with the teacher throughout the program term.

For participants wishing to receive CE credits: In order to receive Continuing Education Credits, participants must attend all sessions live, on time, and in full. Your attendance is tracked carefully to grant your CE credits. Board regulations prohibit partial credit for partial attendance, therefore, incomplete attendance nullifies CE credit eligibility. No exceptions. More information on Continuing Education (CE) credits below.

For participants not wishing to receive CE credits: Attendance at both two-day retreats (January and May) is mandatory. We expect that all participants will also attend each monthly daylong, however, we understand that sometimes there are unavoidable emergencies.

We generally only offer financial assistance one time a year per person. Choosing the fee you can reasonably afford helps make courses available to all, regardless of ability to pay. No one turned away for lack of funds, as space allows. If you are in need of financial assistance, please email

$50 cancel fee* = if cancel >1 week prior to program start
$100 cancel fee* = if cancel between 1 week and 2 days prior to program start
No refunds = if cancel <2 days prior to program start
(*fees reduced for scholarship folks)

QUESTIONS? Please email us.

Continuing Education

Continuing Education (CE) credit available:
This program offers 18 CE credits for $180 for psychologists, health & wellness coaches, and California licensed MFTs, LCSWs, LEPs, LPCCs, nurses, and chiropractors. Please review our Continuing Education Credit information page. to determine if your association or board will accept credits offered by Spirit Rock.*


Teachings are appropriate for health care professionals as well as the general public.


Learning Objectives for participating health care professionals-
At the end of the program you will be better able to:

  • Describe at least two of the overlaps and differences between mindfulness-based treatment and Buddhist psychology;
  • Describe the three clusters of meditative practice: attentional, constructive, deconstructive;
  • List five types of emotion regulation;
  • Describe the relevance of equanimity for emotional regulation;
  • Describe how evolutionary biology informs contemporary understandings of emotion;
  • Describe the parallels between Buddhist practice and exposure therapy;
  • Explain the role of inflexible self-definition in the generation of difficult emotion;
  • Explain the role of the brain’s default mode network and self-referential thought in emotional regulation;
  • Describe Buddhist approaches to shame;
  • Explain the differences between self-esteem and self-compassion;
  • Describe how Buddhist practice is relevant for enhancing the therapeutic alliance;
  • Describe three ways in which clinician mindfulness helps manage countertransference;
  • Describe Buddhist approaches to anxiety.


Continuing Education content level: Intermediate


CEC Schedule: (All times in US Pacific Time)
Full attendance is required daily 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The CEC instructional sessions are highlighted below.

January 8 – No CECs – full attendance required

January 9
10:00 – 10:45 a.m. – Discourse
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. – Discourse
2:00 – 2:30 p.m. – Guided Meditation
2:30 – 3:30 p.m. – Discourse
3:45 – 4:30 p.m. – Discourse

February 12
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Discourse
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. – Discourse
2:00 – 2:30 p.m. – Guided Meditation
2:30 – 3:30 p.m. – Discourse

March 12
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Discourse
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. – Discourse
2:00 – 2:30 p.m. – Guided Meditation
2:30 – 3:30 p.m. – Discourse

April 9
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Discourse
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. – Discourse
2:00 – 2:30 p.m. – Guided Meditation
2:30 – 3:30 p.m. – Discourse

April 30
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Discourse
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. – Discourse
2:00 – 2:30 p.m. – Guided Meditation
2:30 – 3:30 p.m. – Discourse

May 1 – No CECs – full attendance required


*Please note:

  • For those with a different license or with a license from a different licensing board, please contact your licensing board directly to ask if CE credit from the above-approved sponsors is accepted. Spirit Rock does not confirm applicability of credit for those with licenses different than those listed above. Spirit Rock is a provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number CEP16905 for 18 contact hours.
  • Credit is awarded for instructional time only and does not include extended silent meditation, if offered.
  • For full Provider information, and additional CEC information, including attendance requirements, cancellation, and grievance policies, please visit our Continuing Education Credit information page.


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