Mindfulness Soothes Students’ Anxiety and Depression?

The Pilot Light

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By Judith Simmer-Brown, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Contemplative and Religious Studies at Naropa University

When neuroscience graduate student James Holmes was convicted on 24 counts of murder and 140 counts of attempted murder for the theater shootings in Aurora, Colorado in 2012, he had previously sought counseling support from a psychiatrist at his graduate school campus. The day of the rampage, Holmes mailed a notebook to his campus psychiatrist, detailing his attack plan. What the media attention did not consider is how this young man may be more typical in his generation than was previously thought.

On a recent lecture trip to the campus of a top-tier private university, the director of the counseling center lamented to me that, in spite of his love of counseling, he and his psychologist colleagues can no longer do therapy. They can only triage acute crises of students with acute anxiety, depression or suicidal…

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