Kathleen Bishop, Ph.D.
Dr. Bishop received her training in Teaching Mindfulness at the Jefferson-Myrna Brind Integrative Medicine Center in Philadelphia. She has taught comparative religion at Rutgers University and has a private practice of Psychotherapy.
She is a long time practitioner with over 20 years of experience in sitting meditation, leading and attending meditation retreats.
She earned her Masters of Divinity and Ph.D. from Drew University as well as an Ed.D. in Marriage and Family Counseling from The College of New Jersey. She is also a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in NJ.
Advent Day of Mindfulness
St. Georges-by-the-river, Rumson NJ
Saturday, December 7
10 am-2:00 pm
Leader: Rev. Dr. Kathleen Bishop
In this season of great anticipation, why not begin with taking stock of what is here and now. And, in the season of hectic holiday preparation, can we set time aside to be present in our own mind and body?
To be mindful is to pay attention, on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgmentally (thank you Jon Kabat Zinn).
Mindfulness practice, which includes meditation and gentle movement, can equip us to feel alive and present to our experience even when the pressures of the holiday conspire to take away our peace. Sitting and walking meditation will be taught and mindful movement, borrowing from yoga and Qi Gong, will also be included. All levels of experience can be accommodated.
Join us for this mindfulness mini-retreat on December 7th from 10 – 2:00. If you are new to mindfulness, this will be a sampling of what a longer course would be like. If you have been to one of my classes in the past, it will refresh your skills. All are welcome.
Wear comfortable, loose clothing and bring your lunch.
MBSR is an evidence-based 8- week course that uses sitting meditation, body awareness and mindful movement to reduce stress. In studies supported by the NIH, participation in the 8-week course appears to make measurable changes in the brain regions associated with memory, sense of self, empathy and stress. While MBSR has its roots in spiritual practice, the program itself is secular.
In order for a mindfulness course to be called MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, developed by Jon Kabat Zinn) it must be 8 weeks and include a day-long retreat in between weeks six and seven. The 8-week course is an evidence-based program that gets results. Research articles on mindfulness almost all base their findings on the 8-week course.
The course, as it has been developed at the University of Massachusetts by Jon Kabat Zinn and his colleagues, is more than eight weeks worth of sitting together in a group and going home. There are specific teachings for each week, different types of meditation, and the experience of two hours each week that introduce, elaborate and reinforce the practice. Perhaps you are struggling with the home practice. If so, you may benefit from the community of other practitioners under the guidance of a teacher. I have taken the course twice myself and can attest to the importance of what I call "the wisdom of the group." By the time the course came to an end, most of us were sad to see it go. The consolation is that even though the course must come to an end, the practice can last forever. I heard the words, "it changed my life," said with sincerity, many times by graduates of the course. It certainly changed mine.
The fact remains, however, that it is difficult to find eight unencumbered weeks on the calendar. Nor can some settings where the course is offered accomodate a long course. For these reasons Jon Kabat Zinn devotes a chapter (Full Catastrophe Living) to other alternatives. Shorter courses teach the basics and lay out a path for further practice, which is why I started offering them. I also plan on offering some "One Day" retreats that may suit alumni of my courses or give a taste of what mindful living could be like to the uninitiated. Watch this space!