New Course in Mental Health and Spirituality


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Course Information

Taught by Dr. Karen Derris

Buddhist lenses of reality will be taught and discussed in this eight-week seminar as we live and experience them.  Buddhist narratives from several traditions will guide us from analytical theories towards embodied experience for those who live with sickness, pain, and trauma as embodied truths of every day living up to death.

Facing a terminal cancer diagnosis, the instructor, Karen Derris—professor, mother, and Buddhist practitioner—returned to Buddhist narratives, she studied and taught for over two decades to find guides for a new up-close experience of the reality of impermanence. This seminar will begin with dimensions of a Buddhist worldview of how we live, change, and die. Reading and discussing Buddhist narratives together will be a practice of “reading for care.”  In reading and discussing together her new book Storied Companion: Cancer, Trauma and Finding Guides for Living (which will be provided to all enrolled students) she will share her model of reading that connects Buddhist stories to her lived experiences, in order to find new perspectives to live whatever time she has left with meaning and purpose oriented towards love. Discussions will include the Buddhist stories in her book as participants encounter them through their own life experience. Perhaps some seminar members will discover for themselves new ways of facing and experiencing life, death, and impermanence.

How To Register

Register now for the introductory rate of $200. After this first offering, the price will go up!

Scroll to the bottom of the page and find the course you are interested in attending. Please note that there may be multiple starts for each course. Pay particular attention to the year. Then, click add to cart. You can then purchase the course. Once you've purchased the course, you will receive an email regarding the next steps. If you have any questions, please email


All online live class sessions are in the Pacific Standard Time zone.