JLI Presents an all new course, titled;
“How Happiness Thinks”
When: Monday Oct 27th
Where: 720 Lombard Street SF CA 94133
REGISTER HERE Now!
Questions? email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 415.968.9907
How to Enhance Happiness and Human Flourishing
1. How does a healthy adult infuse happiness, meaning and purpose
into his/her life? What are the core methods of Positive Psychology that
can help them attain these goals?
How to Incorporate Positive Psychology with Cultural Sensitivity
2. Considering that religion and spirituality might be important
therapeutic factors, what are the cultural and religious values of those
whose worldview is shaped by Judaic values? How do their beliefs
affect their approach to therapy? And how might Positive Psychology
interventions help such people?
How can mental health professionals best incorporate these Positive
Psychology interventions into their treatment of these patients?
6 Lesson outline.
THE HAPPY YOU: Humility and Self Concept
If happiness comes from within, then a positive self-concept is essential
to human happiness. What is a negative self-image? Where does it stem
from and how does it hamper human happiness? What is humility? Is
humility similar to a negative self-image? Is humility just the right path or
is it also the happy path?
Based on the research of June Price Tangney (“Humility,” Oxford
Handbook of Positive Psychology p. 483ff) and Dr. Abraham Twersky (Let
Us Make Man, 1987) this lesson discusses the relationship of humility
to happiness. What are the origins of the concept of humility? What are
the psychological benefits? How do we ensure that humility does not
tailspin into a negative self-concept and self-denigration? On the other
hand, what is the psychology of arrogance, and what are the implications?
What teachings of Judaism are relevant to the discussion of self-concept,
humility, and arrogance?
JOY DESPITE LIFE’S STATIC: Patience and Optimism
Life has its hassles, stresses and hardships and this static impedes
happiness. Building patience helps one cope better with these hardships,
but what is patience and how does one nurture this virtue?
Based on the research of Sarah A. Schnitker and Justin T. Westbrook
(“Do Good Things Come to Those Who Wait?: Patience Interventions
to Improve Well-Being,” The Wiley Blackwell Handbook of Positive
Psychological Interventions p. 155ff), this lesson addresses the findings of
Positive Psychology with regard to patience. What are empirically tested
interventions, and how do they compare to Jewish principles of patience?
This lesson also explores Martin Seligman’s research regarding
optimism (in his book Learned Optimism) and compares his findings to
similar concepts in Jewish thinking. How can one eliminate worries about
the future? Should we ignore our worries? Is there a way to build optimism
and trust about the future?
SAVORING THE GOOD: Gratitude
We live in an era of material abundance, yet many remain unhappy. Is
it possible for material plenty to contribute to happiness? Why do people
always strive to have more?
Based on the extensive research of Robert A. Emmons and Michael
E. McCullough (in their works, The Psychology of Gratitude, Thanks! How
Practicing Gratitude, Can Make You Happier, and Gratitude Works,) this
lesson will discuss gratitude and its benefits for overall wellbeing and
happiness. What are the common obstacles to enhancing gratitude?
Which gratitude exercises have been shown to be most effective, and why?
How is gratitude in Jewish religion and culture similar to the traditional
definitions and how is it different?
HUMAN IMPERFECTION: Self-Forgiveness and Change
If humans were perfect, happiness would come much easier. How does
happiness think in the context of committing a moral wrong? What about
character flaws, negative thoughts, broken resolutions? Is our conscience
supposed to undermine our happiness? If not, how is that different
Reviewing the research of Julie H. Hall and Frank D. Fincham (“Self-
Forgiveness: The Stepchild of Forgiveness Research,” Journal of Social
and Clinical Psychology, Vol. 24, No. 5, 2005, pp. 621-637) this lesson
examines the concept of self-forgiveness. What does “self-forgiveness”
mean? What are the similarities and differences between self-forgiveness
and interpersonal forgiveness? How does self-forgiveness impact wellbeing?
When is change more appropriate than forgiveness?
This lesson also explores James Prochaska’s Six Stages of Change
(“Stages and Processes of Self-Change of Smoking: Toward An Integrative
Model of Change,” Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology ,
51:3, 390-395) and relates it to the Jewish model of repentance.
UNHAPPY TIMES: Post-Traumatic Growth
While Judaism endorses perennial happiness, we cannot ignore the
death of a loved one. Is happiness ever appropriate after the loss of a loved
one? How can we avoid enduring, crippling unhappiness in the face of
Reviewing the research of Lawrence G. Calhoun and Richard G.
Tedeschi (in their book Posttraumatic Growth in Clinical Practice), this
lesson examines the positive change that can be experienced as a result
of a struggle with a life crisis or traumatic event. What is posttraumatic
growth, and which strategies promote and support post-traumatic growth?
How is the Jewish way in death and mourning relevant to post
traumatic growth? How does one infuse happiness in the presence of
sorrow, and what actions can be helpful to bring the mourner back to
TOWARD A MEANINGFUL LIFE: Spirituality, Religion and Meaning
Spirituality, religion and meaningful, purposeful living contribute to
happiness. Why, and in what context might religion add joy to life? How
might irreligious people gain from these findings? Is it proper to use
religion as a means for happiness? Is life really about our happiness? Is
happiness a religious issue?
Reviewing the research of Edward Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener
(in Happiness, Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth p. 100ff)
this lesson explores the relationship between religion, meaning, and
spirituality from the perspective of Positive Psychology and from the
perspective of Jewish writings.