iraisrael

About Ira Israel

Licensed Counselor & Licensed Psychotherapist

Lessons Learned From Teaching at the Esalen Benefit Weekend

The Esalen Institute is home to a truly unique, magical, loving, authentic community of highly intelligent, well-educated and exceptionally talented thought-leaders committed to positive global transformation. I was extremely honored to be invited to teach alongside some of my favorite teachers such as Sally Kempton, Terry Hunt, Chip Conley and so many others, but when [...]

2016-11-13T21:36:34+00:00 October 23rd, 2016|Miscellaneous|Comments Off on Lessons Learned From Teaching at the Esalen Benefit Weekend

“Clearing Emotional Clutter” by Donald Altman: Book Review

“Meditation is the act of meditation.” ~ Sogyal Rimpoche Yesterday a friend told me how disappointed she was with the local “Self-Compassion” mindfulness meditation class in which she was enrolled. She noticed that attendance had declined from ten people down to four people after a few weeks. It was readily apparent that the teacher was [...]

2016-11-12T09:29:35+00:00 October 22nd, 2016|Film, Music, Book & Art Reviews|Comments Off on “Clearing Emotional Clutter” by Donald Altman: Book Review

Chris Brown’s “Superior”: Best Song Never Heard In America

If your daily life seems poor, do not blame it; blame yourself that you are not poet enough to call forth its riches; for the creator, there is no poverty. ~ Rilke Patti Smith, Curtis Mayfield, Morrissey, Ani DiFranco, Van Morrison, Daniel Lanois, Bruce Springsteen, Leonard Cohen, Joan Armatrading, Lloyd Cole, Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:17+00:00 August 26th, 2016|Film, Music, Book & Art Reviews|Comments Off on Chris Brown’s “Superior”: Best Song Never Heard In America

What Women Really Say When They’re Alone: Therese Barbato’s ‘That’s What She Said’ Podcast

Heartbreak, open relationships, bisexuality, celebrity crushes... much more than I ever expected from an evening of Shakespeare. Los Angeles is not known for its exceptional theater, but on Saturday evening I attended the Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles’ performance of “Twelfth Night“ and found the directing, staging, and all of the performances to be stellar, [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:17+00:00 August 13th, 2016|Film, Music, Book & Art Reviews|Comments Off on What Women Really Say When They’re Alone: Therese Barbato’s ‘That’s What She Said’ Podcast

The Psychology Of An Epic Guitar Solo

“Go wrong strong.” ~ Miles Davis “New ears for new music.” ~ Nietzsche For the last 50 years, a seminal part of Western popular music has been the guitar solo. What makes an epic guitar solo and how does it interact with and add to a song? As a psychotherapist, my theory regarding popular music [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:17+00:00 July 20th, 2016|Film, Music, Book & Art Reviews|Comments Off on The Psychology Of An Epic Guitar Solo

The Genius of Cindy Sherman

There will be time, there will be time To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet; ~ T. S. Eliot, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you. ~ Nietzsche Cindy Sherman's "Imitation of Life" is one of the [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:19+00:00 July 17th, 2016|Film, Music, Book & Art Reviews|Comments Off on The Genius of Cindy Sherman

David Brooks: Racist, Homophobe, Ignoramus

Gandhi was asked, “What do you think of Western civilization?” “I think it would be a good idea,” he replied. ~ CBS News Special, “The Italians” “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” ~ Lord Acton I have been a registered Democrat for 31 years and not once have I heard a fellow [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:19+00:00 July 3rd, 2016|Miscellaneous|Comments Off on David Brooks: Racist, Homophobe, Ignoramus

If It’s Free How Much Does It Cost?

"Go shopping." ~ President George W. Bush shortly after 9/11 "Finance has increasingly made us creatures of time." ~ William N. Goetzmann, "Money Changes Everything: How Finance Made Civilization Possible." The Sierra Club mails me shiny nickels proudly visible through clear pockets on the envelopes; earlier this year Capital One Visa paid me over $500 [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:19+00:00 June 29th, 2016|Miscellaneous|Comments Off on If It’s Free How Much Does It Cost?

What Is Authenticity?

In his Sunday New York Times article "'Be Yourself' Is Terrible Advice," Adam Grant states that, "Authenticity means erasing the gap between what you firmly believe inside and what you reveal to the outside world." In fact, what Professor Grant provides is the exact definition of "congruence," not "authenticity." Congruence is when what one reveals [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:19+00:00 June 7th, 2016|Mindfulness|Comments Off on What Is Authenticity?

10 Ways To Survive Your Childhood Now That You’re An Adult

"People are always shouting they want to create a better future. It's not true. The future is an apathetic void of no interest to anyone. The past is full of life, eager to irritate us, provoke and insult us, tempt us to destroy or repaint it. The only reason people want to be masters of [...]

2016-10-13T10:23:19+00:00 June 1st, 2016|Psychology|Comments Off on 10 Ways To Survive Your Childhood Now That You’re An Adult