Everyday Zen and buddhist teachings recognize the inherent interconnection of the spiritual and the psychological--the natural goodness and wholeness of our fundamental nature and the habitual and self-enclosed loops of our conditioned thoughts and behavior.
The spiritual counseling program is offered by Chris Fortin as a place to explore how these realms meet and intertwine in our bodies, hearts and minds. Chris is an Everyday Zen priest, teacher and community member and a licensed MFT psychotherapist in private practice for over 25 years.
Gently staying close to how we close down, harden, and separate, noticing thoughts and the physical tension that arises, the walls erected to protect the inherent tenderness of our hearts begin to dissolve. In time we open to a subtle and intuitive way of living that is beyond the confines of our judgments and self-assumptions. Compassion, clarity and understanding begin to inform how we live and the choices we make. We awaken to our full aliveness and a warm feeling of connection with ourselves, with others, and with the world.
How It Works
Spiritual counseling is recommended for practitioners of all Buddhist traditions and for those who have no background in Buddhist practice but are interested in grounding their healing journey in a compassionate and clear awareness that includes the spiritual dimension. Daily meditation and practice with a local meditation group is recommended and will provide the ground for the unfolding of this spiritual process. Specific issues or themes, including generalized feelings of dissatisfaction and unease, are addressed and worked on over time.
The initial session is one hour, and after the first meeting there is a commitment made to meet and to work together for 4-8 sessions. Subsequent sessions are 30-60 minutes and are arranged depending on the need of the individual. There is an assessment at the end of the agreed upon sessions about whether the counseling work is complete.
Fees are by sliding scale and are based on each persons assessment of their ability to pay. Half hour: $35-$65. One hour: $65-$95. (Individual arrangements for a lower fee schedule can be made depending on availability of openings).
"Chris Fortin is a gifted Zen teacher and therapist, and a wise, soulful, human being who knows that there's no way to fully understand another, much less shape his or her life. This is the point, as i understand it, of this new possibility we call spiritual counselingthat through encountering one another in truth, and with wise compassion, in the context of a spiritual process, change can comenot so much as therapy for wounding (though this might be included), but as inspiration for a whole life's journey."
Norman Fischer, founder and spiritual director of the Everyday Zen Foundation