Stephen K. Boyd
photo of Stephen K. Boyd, LPC Stephen K. Boyd, LPC
Stephen K. Boyd
1402 North Loop Blvd
Austin, TX, 78756 USA
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You probably would like to know a bit more about me. There are some influences that are always with me. The first is 40 years of Buddhist practice, in a number of traditions, most importantly the Non-Sectarian (Rime) and Non-dual (Dzogchen) traditions of Tibetan Buddhism. In that time, I have done everything from standing one-on-one in front of the Dalai Lama to receive his blessing, to sitting in meditation as a Japanese Zen master yelled "Jellyfish!" at me when I was not still enough, to studying with one of the foremost Jewish mystics of our times, Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, to attending a council of Native American elders recently held near Austin. It was my history of practice that naturally led me to Naropa University, a full-accredited, degree-granting Buddhist university in Boulder, where I got an MA in Transpersonal Counseling. "Transpersonal" means beyond ego—what a lot of people would call "spiritual." That does not mean I talk about religion or try to convert people to Buddhism. To the contrary, my practice helps me put aside preconceptions and simply be open and responsive to my clients. What works for me, may not work for others.

Another force that shapes my work as a therapist is the Integral Philosophy of Ken Wilber. From Wilber, I take the very important idea that it is not enough to merely work with your personal psychological histories, the traditional subject of psychotherapy, vital as that is. We must also look at the rest of your life. He divides this into four parts, beginning with the personal issues we just mentioned. Another one is those inner states that are not just personal but cultural, the ones we share with a group of others: what does it mean to you to be a woman, a man, a Democrat, a Republican, gay, straight, young, old, and so on. Beyond that we must not forget that we are bodies too. And that the body holds a powerful approach to our problems, for instance working out, yoga, or medication, if appropriate. And last, we must examine the social factors in our lives—our jobs, the economy, how technology like computers impacts us.

Among influences, I should also mention my PhD in English, where, among much else, I made an intensive study of Christianity. In addition to a broad knowledge of Buddhism and Christianity, I also have an interest in Sufism, Taoism, and Hinduism. Of course, depending on the nature of your needs, we might never mention any of these.