Psychotherapists Discuss Benefits of Buddhism


Nashville, Tn – In Prescribing the Dharma (University of North Carolina Press, March 18, 2019), Dr. Ira Helderman highlights the ways in which psychotherapists integrate Buddhist practices into their treatment plans. Through extensive fieldwork and in-depth interviews with clinicians, Helderman gives voice to the psychotherapists themselves, providing comprehensive insight into the diverse ways practitioners relate to Buddhist traditions––some draw a hard line between religion and psychotherapy while others aim to disrupt that separation.

Ira Helderman: Scholar, published author, screenwriter and commentator, Ira Helderman holds a PhD in Religion, Psychology and Culture from Vanderbilt University and a BFA in screenwriting from New York University. A licensed professional counselor, he began working in the mental health field in 2001 and has a private psychotherapy practice in Nashville. Ira’s research examines how psychotherapists and psychotherapeutic ideas shape the way that people are religious in America. You can find more information at and on Facebook and Twitter at @DrIraHelderman



Prescribing the Dharma: Psychotherapists, Buddhist Traditions, and Defining Religion
Ira Helderman | March 18, 2019 | University of North Carolina Press
Paperback ISBN: 978-1469648521 | Price: $28.95


HeldermanIn an interview, Ira Helderman can discuss:

  • 5 common American misconceptions about the intersection of Buddhism and psychotherapy
  • How mindfulness practices are actually only the tip of the iceberg for how Buddhism is used in clinical practice; clinicians use a wide variety of Buddhist teachings and practices and in surprisingly diverse ways
  • Historical prescriptive mindfulness and meditation in psychotherapy (dates back 100+ years)
  • Whether or not mindfulness must be correlated to Buddhism and how the science of the mind and historical Eastern spirituality cross paths
  • Whether or not mindfulness and yoga should be used in public schools or hospitals: can you call them religious, and do they violate the separation between church and state?