Next program: June 1 - 6, 2014, Sunday night - Friday morning

Jim Hopper, Ph.D. & Dana Moore, M.A.R., M.A.

Hello and thanks for your interest in our annual Kripalu 5-day workshop/retreat in the late spring.

We are delighted and honored to have this opportunity to share how we're applying neuroscience, Buddhist psychology, meditation and yoga to the transformation of trauma.

Here we provide additional info beyond Kripalu's catalog and website description (linked to from Jim's bio page on Kripalu's site), including how our program differs from the Kripalu programs offered by Dana Moore and Bessel van der Kolk. We also suggest resources (websites, books, etc.) that you may find useful, whether you attended our programs or not.

Please don't hesitate to email us with any questions or suggestions, or if you're interested in future programs of ours at Kripalu or elsewhere. (Remove 9s [there to prevent spam] and put 'Kripalu' in subject line: or

You can also ask questions of Kripalu's staff, and register by phone, at 800-741-7353.

With warm wishes,

Jim & Dana

About Our 5-day Program

From the Kripalu catalog and website:

For therapists, physicians, yoga instructors, bodyworkers, researchers, and others who work with traumatized people.

This unique professional training examines the roots of trauma and post-traumatic addictions through the lenses of contemporary neuroscience and traditional Buddhist psychology. It focuses on similarities between Buddhist theory and neuroscience accounts of aversion and craving, demonstrating how both can be transformed by Buddhist meditation practices and yoga.

Participants will learn:

  • The fundamentals of trauma theory
  • Relevant parallels between neuroscience and Buddhist psychology regarding trauma and posttraumatic addiction
  • Trauma-informed mindfulness and yoga skills
  • Buddhist practices such as mindfulness and loving-kindness meditation and how these may transform the brain.

Handouts will be provided for each presentation including step-by-step instructions for every yoga and meditation practice that is taught. In addition, participants will receive (electronically) clinically useful assessment questionnaires with supporting publications and instruction manuals.

Don't miss this opportunity to learn and practice trauma-informed meditation and yoga techniques that can cultivate mindful embodiment and transform habitual thoughts, emotions, and behaviors into openings for freedom, love, and happiness.

Finally, this program does not focus on work with children, but those working with children have found it extremely helpful.

See also our Kripalu website bio pages: Jim Hopper, Dana Moore

More info:

We invite you to join us for this innovative and highly experiential workshop at a leading retreat center for yoga and health.

Our presentations will be accompanied by plenty of time for questions and discussion. Each day participants will learn and practice meditation and yoga. Clinicians and yoga teachers will have opportunities to practice applying the practices and skills we teach.

During the ample free time (2.5 hour mid-day break and free evenings), you will have plenty of opportunities to enjoy being at Kripalu – a beautiful place with many wonderfully peaceful, healing and rejuvenating offerings, including hiking, hot tubs, and excellent food. See Kripalu's Guest Information, including Accommodations, Arrival Information, Dining, and Healing Arts (i.e., options for one-on-one care and support).

Last but not least, if you are a mental health professional, you will recieve 23.5 hours of continuing education credits.

Learning Objectives

Upon completing this course, participants will be able to:
  • Describe key Buddhist psychological principals of craving, aversion, and ignorance.
  • Explain parallels between Buddhist principles of craving, aversion and ignorance and neuroscience research on these psychological and behavioral processes.
  • Describe the fundamental roles of craving, aversion, and ignorance in perception, cognition, emotion and behavior.
  • Explain the brain's 'default mode' and how it involves ongoing processes of craving and aversion while perpetuating ignorance.
  • Describe how trauma-sensitive Kripalu yoga cultivates attentional and cognitive capacities necessary for trauma recovery.
  • Apply Buddhist, yoga and neuroscience principles and insights to increase one's understanding of traumatic and addictive conditioning in oneself and others.
  • Explain how Buddhist and yoga methods may alter brain processes involved in the regulation and dysregulation of physiological and emotional systems, especially in posttraumatic fears and addictions.
  • Practice Buddhist methods for cultivating concentration.
  • Practice trauma-sensitive Kripalu yoga methods that increase awareness and mindfulness of sensations, movements, and emotions.
  • Practice Buddhist methods for cultivating mindfulness.
  • Practice Buddhist methods for cultivating lovingkindness and compassion.
  • Apply concentration methods to alter the brain's default mode.
  • Apply trauma-sensitive Kripalu yoga methods to calm the body and brain, and to increase awareness and mindfulness of sensations, movements, and emotions.
  • Apply mindfulness methods to gain direct insight into default mode brain functioning.
  • Apply mindfulness methods to gain direct insight into conditioned responses of aversion and craving toward external stimuli and interpersonal interactions.
  • Apply lovingkindness and compassion methods to calm the brain and body.
  • Apply mindfulness, lovingkindness and compassion methods to increase acceptance and peace, and to decrease judgmental thinking and the strength of conditioned craving, aversion, and emotional responses including fear, shame, and guilt.
  • Demonstrate how Buddhist meditation and yoga exercises can be modified to be safe and effective for trauma survivors.

What's different from the 2-day and 5-day Kripalu programs of Dana Moore and Bessel van der Kolk?

Ours is a professional training program, while the programs with Bessel and Dana are open to non-professionals, and are educational and experiential.

Jim focuses on parallel Buddhist and neuroscience insights into trauma and addiction, which are not focuses of the programs with Bessel. What Bessel teaches in the 2-day workshop is a good introduction to Jim's detailed and in-depth neuroscience of trauma teachings in our 5-day workshop.

Dana teaches numerous clinical skills, and participants have many opportunities to practice them.

In short, all participants in our 5-day professional training workshop learn the science and skills necessary to use mindfulness- and yoga-based interventions in various health care and wellness-promoting settings.

In general, the programs with Bessel and Dana serves as introductions, though not necessary ones, to the Buddhism-informed and more in-depth learning, focused on professional development, of the program with Dana and Jim.

Recommended Websites

The Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy in Newton, Massachusetts - A great organization with many offerings for therapists.

Mindfulness Research Guide - Site by USC graduate student David Black has an extensive and up-to-date list of research publications, information about assessment instruments, links to the sites of treatment and research centers, and a monthly newsletter on current mindfulness research.

Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Healthcare, and Society in Wooster, Massachusetts - Founded by Jon Kabat-Zinn and colleagues, this organization developed Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and has trained people to run MBSR programs around the world. The web site has information about the their annual conference, finding colleagues who have adapted the MBSR approach to specific client groups, etc.

Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts - Where Jim has done a number of retreats. It's one of the oldest, most respected and best-run retreat centers in North America.

Mindfulness Together - A social network founded by Susan Kaiser Greenland, creator of InnerKids and author of The Mindful Child, the community is "dedicated to nurturing the inner lives of kids and those who love them."

The Center for Mindful Eating - This is a "forum" for "professionals who wish to help their clients develop healthier relationships with food and eating, and to bring eating into balance with other important aspects of life."

Iyengar Yoga Resources - This yoga method can be good way to cultivate mindfulness for people who need a physically active and movement oriented approach and/or don't (yet) feel at home in their bodies.

Self-Compassion - Kristin Neff's site, about "a healthier way of relating to yourself," includes scholarly research and exercises for how to increase self-compassion.

Pat Ogden's Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute provides training in body-oriented therapy that includes a major mindfulness component, including methods for "tracking" bodily sensations, helping clients process traumatic memories and conditioning in states of optimal arousal, etc. This approach is grounded in sound and ethical clinical practices that do not violate clients' boundaries.

Seeking Safety is a great group intervention for people struggling with addictions and trauma. Lisa Najavits' book Seeking Safety is a fantastic (and flexible) treatment manual and resource, and training is available.

Dhamma Brothers, Doing Time, Doing Vipassana and Changing From Inside - Films on prisoners doing intensive vipassana or 'Insight' meditation retreats (in the Goenka vipassana tradition, which is more structured and more focused on body scan meditation than retreats at the Insight Meditation Society).

Mindfulness and Kindness - Inner Sources of Freedom and Happiness - My webpage written especially for those living with the effects of trauma.

Recommended Books

Mindfulness and Psychotherapy, by Christopher Germer, Ronald Siegel, Paul Fulton (Editors), 2005.

Mindfulness in Plain English, by Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, 2002 – Free on the web, or

Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love & Wisdom, by Rick Hanson and Richard Mendius, 2009.

The Compassionate Mind: A New Approach to Life's Challenges, by Paul Gilbert, 2009.

Self-Compassion: Stop Beating Yourself Up and Leave Insecurity Behind, by Kristin Neff, 2011.

Overcoming Trauma through Yoga: Reclaiming Your Body, by David Emerson and Elizabeth Hopper, 2011.

Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention for Addictive Behaviors: A Clinician's Guide, by Sarah Bowen, Nela Chawla, and G. Alan Marlatt, 2010.

ACT Made Simple: An Easy-to-Read Primer on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, by Russ Harris, 2009.

Finding Life After Trauma: Using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy to Heal from Post-Traumatic Stress and Trauma-Related Problems, by Victoria Follette and Jacqueline Pistorello, 2007.

The Mindful Brain: Reflection and Attunement in the Cultivation of Well-Being, by Daniel Siegel, 2007.

The Mindful Therapist: A Clinician's Guide to Mindsight and Neural Integration, by Daniel Siegel, 2010.

The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion: Freeing Yourself from Destructive Thoughts and Emotions, by Christopher Germer, 2009.

Insight Dialogue: The Interpersonal Path to Freedom, by Gregory Kramer, 2007.

Touching Enlightenment: Finding Realization in the Body, by Reginald Ray, 2008.

The Lost Art of Compassion: Discovering the Practice of Happiness in the Meeting of Buddhism and Psychology, by Lorne Ladner, 2004.

Mindful Recovery: A Spiritual Path to Healing from Addiction, by Thomas and Beverly Bien, 2002.

What the Buddha Taught, by Walpola Rahula, 1974.

When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times, by Pema Chodron, 2002.

The Mindful Child, by Susan Kaiser Greenland, 2010.

The Attention Revolution, by Alan Wallace, 2006.

Buddhism with an Attitude, by Alan Wallace, 2003.

Please feel free to email us with suggestions for other resources that have been helpful to you (remove 9s [inserted to prevent spam] and put 'Kripalu' in subject line: or
Page last updated 12/10/2013