One morning, long ago, John woke up and decided he wanted to write a book on theories
and techniques in counseling and psychotherapy. He thought, “Of all the classes I
teach, I love teaching theories and techniques best, so I should write a textbook.”
John then began using a cognitive self-instructional problem-solving strategy (see
Chapter 8). He identified the problems associated with existing theories and techniques
textbooks and formulated possible solutions.
As discussed in the Introduction to Volume One, Jennifer Simon, who was at Wiley
at the time, was instrumental in convincing me to edit the two-volume reference
Handbook on Racial-Cultural Psychology and Counseling. I agreed to take the project
through her persistence and encouragement. She prompted me to think about
what type of material would help advance the field and at the same time build on existing
research and scholarship. It was also her belief that conceptual and research
issues combined into one volume with training and practice would not be practical.
As a long-standing advocate for understanding issues of cultural and ethnic
diversity, I have served as President of APA Division 45, Society for the
Psychological Study of Ethnic Minority Issues, and currently chair the
American Psychological Association’s Commission for the Recruitment,
Retention and Training of Ethnic Minorities implementation task force
(CEMRRAT2). Both of these organizations were instrumental in the approval
of the APA Multicultural Guidelines for Practice and the promotion of empirical
research addressing mental health issues of ethnic minority clinical populations.
In my professional life I have been asked many times the simple
question: What is transpersonal psychology, counselling or psychotherapy?
The answer is straightforward: it is a broad transcultural theory of
human nature that posits that human beings are more than physical and
psychological beings, with some form of spirituality being a reasonable
bet. Oh, and by the way, it is also a discrete field of study that could be
conceived as having had about 40 years of academic recognition.
A unified vision of intellectual assets lends itself to diverse perspectives. In addi-
tion to each and every author who devoted significant time and care, and without
whom this book would be impossible, I am indebted to a number of people, sev-
eral of whom should be singled out. Their thoughtful comments, counsel, and en-
couragement made a great deal of difference in the final product.
I enjoyed reading this book. It is a very refreshing down to earth text that
examines theory and research without becoming an academic tome. It is
comprehensive, focused on practice and includes some very interesting
reflective exercises that allow you to engage with the text by comparing and
contrasting your experiences with the author’s ideas. The book contains
important insights for developing the essential skills required to provide
effective bereavement care. It covers a wide range of issues from bereavement
support to the importance of dreams....
The reader of this book will find within it ideas and models based on my 25
years of experience in clinical, educational, developmental, and medical psychology
among Arabs, Muslims, Jews, and Americans, but mainly among Palestinian
Arabs. I studied for my master’s degree in clinical psychology at Haifa
University in Israel, during which time I received some practical training at
Jewish psychological centers in Israel. Thus both my theoretical study and practical
training were based on the Western-oriented theories of psychology.
Editors bring together a diverse group of scholars who share valuable qualitative research techniques and rich case examples. Qualitative methodologies and the different paradigms which guide them can be seen as both an alternative and complementary approach to quantification and positivism in social, personality, developmental, health, clinical, counseling, community, and school psychology.