Last Updated on October 8, 2020 by Paul Farrell, MRP, JD, PhD
We already know that seventy to ninety percent of all doctors’ visits are stress-related. A third have high blood pressure. We also know that more than half of all Americans see counselors and go into therapy sometime during the course of their lives, to handle stresses of all kinds – the loss of a loved one, health problems, bankruptcies, job losses, addictions and much more. There was a special bond between us during our sessions, we were meditating together.
Counseling and Therapy as Meditation
Earlier, for fourteen years before I started working as a professional career and crisis consultant, I was on the other side of the couch struggling through a long “dark night of the soul.” I needed help and got it from all kinds of therapists, counselors, ministers, psychologists and psychiatrists. And on occasion I also got advice from unconventional sources: astrologers, psychics, shamans, Tarot card readers, numerologists, palmists, hypnotists, New Age gurus, healers, I Ching masters and for a few years I worked with a neo-Reichian Sikh.
During this long dark night I became increasingly aware that whatever meditation was, it was happening right there during each one of these sessions. Today I know there is actually nothing unusual about seeing the therapeutic relationship as a meditation: As I learned much later, the goal of Buddhist insight meditation, Vipassana, is identical to Western psychotherapy, both seeking greater awareness, higher consciousness and enlightenment.
About the Author
Dr. Farrell is a Behavioral Economist. His books include The Millionaire Code; The Millionaire Meditation: Stress Management for Wall Street, Corporate America & Entrepreneurs; The Zen Millionaire; The Winning Portfolio; Expert Investing on The Net; Mutual Funds on The Net; and The Lazy Person’s Guide to Investing.
He also published 1,643 columns on DowJones-MarketWatch and for years was their #1 traffic-generating columnist. Before the Internet, he edited & published FNX: Future News Index, a financial newsletter for stock market traders. Earlier he was a Wall Street investment banker with Morgan Stanley, Executive Vice President of the Financial News Network; and Associate Editor of the Los Angeles Herald Examiner.
He has a Doctorate in Psychology, Juris Doctor, Masters in Regional Planning and Bachelor of Architecture. He worked on the Esalen organic farm and served in the U.S. Marine Corps as Staff Sergeant in aviation computer technology.