Deeper into the Soul Back in Stock!

More Deeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer’s Toward Forgetfulness CareDeeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer's Towards Forgetfulness Care

Elders Academy Press is excited to announce that we have copies of Deeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer’s Toward Forgetfulness Care. 


Deeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer’s Towards Forgetfulness Care

by Nader Robert Shabahangi, Ph.D. & Bogna Szymkiewicz, Ph.D.
Eldership Academy Press (2008)
124 pages; $13.95-Softcover: Back in Stock!, plus shipping & handling;
or $9.95 eBook – Epub & Mobi

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“If you are a researcher, a hospital worker, a teacher, a caregiver, this book belongs on your desk or at your bedside. Deeper into the Soul will push you further than you meant to go, surprising you into a smile of pleasure, a buzz of new learning, a challenge to your usual interpretation of meaning. Best of all, it will engage and enlarge your heart.”

~Elizabeth Bugental, Psychotherapist and Author of AgeSong: Meditations for Later Years

This book is a practical guide for people who work and live with relatives or residents with symptoms of forgetfulness. The authors offer ideas and tips dealing with symptoms such as aggression and wandering, but they also explore a new way of understanding the people for whom we care. They ask the basic existential questions: What are the possible meanings of forgetfulness? What purpose does it serve for both caregiver and the one experiencing forgetfulness?

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Encounters of the Real Kind Book 3

Encounters of the Real Kind: Musings, poetry, stories about elders, forgetfulness and life, Book 3Encounters_cover_front_only

Edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2015)
150 pages; $16.95 Softcover, plus shipping

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Elders Academy Press is excited to present the third volume in the Encounters of the Real Kind series; a shared tome of stories, poems and musings from the 2013/2014 participants in the Pacific Institute Gero-Wellness Program at AgeSong.

The Gero-Wellness Program interns at AgeSong come from a variety of schools and universities in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. The participants are interns and doctoral students with backgrounds in psychology, gerontology, counseling, grief and loss support, and human development. Through their practicum experience at AgeSong, they show an authentic interest and passion in their work with the aging population.

The Pacific Institute Gero-Wellness Program interns are part of an engaged movement that views aging with respect and awareness. All residents at AgeSong Eldercare Communities have an opportunity to connect with the interns who provide emotional and therapeutic support individually and/or in group settings.

A Note from the Editor about Encounters of the Real Kind

AgeSong programming for eldercare seeks to return meaning to aging and “Old Age.” In so doing, the hope is to return to the centrality of meaning in all of our lives.

Meaning is not to be found in either the pure philosophical contemplation of life or just the practical, everyday activities of earning a living. Rather, meaning must be grounded both in concepts and in experience. What makes the Gero-Wellness Program so unique is that students who are learning about the social sciences, such as social work and psychology, can combine these intellectual concepts with the depth of experience presented to them by elders. Residential care settings such as AgeSong provide such opportunities.

AgeSong and its partner Pacific Institute address the marginalization of the elderly in modern society; here, students and interns learn from elders, while in turn elders feel valued and respected for being the teachers they are.

In these stories and poems you can see how the AgeSong Elders are teaching the timeless qualities of being human: being in the moment, in the here and now, relating deeply with others and oneself, being kind and generous, giving and accepting, loving and caring. These ways of being are so very much needed in our modern-day societies, which are increasingly fast paced, materialistic, and cerebral.

“Elders show us what our heart needs, what it yearns for. As such, elders may be the solution to many of the problems we face today. All we need to do is listen, to spend time with them. Our lives may never be the same after such encounters of the real kind.”
—Nader Shabahangi, Editor, CEO AgeSong

“Days spent as an intern at AgeSong are unpredictable. Any given day may hold moments of joy, connection, challenge, affection, sadness, and delight — often in rapid succession. The experience of being there is collage-like, with many elements co-occurring simultaneously. My arts background gives me the freedom to look at things through my own lens, paralleling the creative freedom memory loss can give some of our forgetful elders. The collages reproduced in this book are visual anecdotes created to process my experience of a day’s worth of encounters with members of the AgeSong community.”
-Ivy Tiegel, MFTi Expressive Arts Therapy Intern

“So how can we come to understand and cherish, accept and love our frail and forgetful seniors? The answer: by appreciating who they are right now—not compared to days, weeks, or years ago. We need to meet and appreciate them as they are today and not worry about yesterday or what will happen tomorrow. We can deal with that as it comes. Most importantly, we need to celebrate who they are now, accept their limitations, and rejoice in what they still have—what Age Song calls “personhood.”
As the educational component of the AgeSong/Pacific Institute collaborative, Pacific Institute actively promotes the recognition of “personhood,” making the experience for residents of AgeSong-managed facilities full and enjoyable. Furthermore, Pacific Institute seeks to spread this philosophy of care to all who desire to connect more intimately with seniors. That philosophy is reflected in these stories, poems, and observations, contributed by our interns. Enjoy them!”

—Peter Szutu, President Pacific Institute

Encounters of the Real Kind: Musings, poetry, stories about elders, forgetfulness and life, Book 3
Edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2015)
150 pages; $16.95 Softcover, plus shipping

Purchasing Details:

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Conversations with Ed – Waiting for Forgetfulness: Why are We So Afraid of Alzheimer’s Disease?

Conversations with Ed Waiting for Forgetfulness: Why are We So Afraid of Alzheimer's Disease?Conversations with Ed – Waiting for Forgetfulness: Why are We So Afraid of Alzheimer’s Disease?
by Ed Voris, Nader Shabahangi, and Patrick Fox,in collaboration with Sharon Mercer
Elders Academy Press (2009)

126 pages, $25.50 Hardcover, $19.50 Softcover, plus shipping; $9.95 eBook – ePub & Mobi

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How can we not be afraid of Alzheimer’s Disease? How can we not dread aging? By posing these questions we are invited alternate ways of seeing Alzheimer’s disease as well as aging. In so doing we do not want to minimize the suffering that people may experience watching a loved one become forgetful. Nor do we want to minimize that becoming forgetful and growing old can be pain processes. Rather, Conversations with Ed wants to create a positive cultural space for people with dementia, for those who accompany them on their journey and for those who fear being afflicted with it.

Read more about Conversations with Ed in this article, “Consensus Smiles” by Sally Gelardin, Ph.D. on the AgeSong Today blog.

 

Conversations with Ed – Waiting for Forgetfulness: Why are We So Afraid of Alzheimer’s Disease?
by Ed Voris, Nader Shabahangi, and Patrick Fox,in collaboration with Sharon Mercer
Elders Academy Press (2009)

126 pages, $25.50 Hardcover, $19.50 Softcover, plus shipping; $9.95 eBook – ePub & Mobi

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Elders Today: Opportunities of a Lifetime

Elders Today: Opportunities of a Lifetime book coverElders Today: Opportunities of a Lifetime
edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2011)
58 pages, $12.95 Softcover, plus shipping; $9.95 eBook – ePub & Mobi

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Elders remind us of the big questions of life: what really matters to me? What gives me a true sense of contentment, of feeling useful inside? What are the moments I cherish and how do I remember those as guideposts for living my life? How do my actions, thoughts, and behaviors further who I would like to become? What is the vision I have of myself, of the society within which I live, to which I would like to contribute? What are the values I hold dear and for which I want to stand? What would I like to leave behind when I part from this world? These questions are central, I believe, to living a life that is worth living. It is in joining with the elders of today that each one of us can be enriched and deepened, that our culture and societies can be reminded of what makes us essentially human. Elders Today poses these complex, quintessential questions, helping us not only learn to appreciate what it means to be an elder; we can’t help but actually look forward to becoming elders ourselves.

Elders Today: Opportunities of a Lifetime
edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2011)
58 pages, $12.95 Softcover, plus shipping; $9.95 eBook – ePub & Mobi

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Also available on Amazon.

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Gems of Wisdom: A Book of Elder Poetry and Prose

Gems of Wisdom: A Book of Elder Poetry and ProseGems of Wisdom:
A Book of Elder Poetry and Prose

edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2011)

132 pages, $11.95, plus shipping & handling

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Gems of Wisdom is a celebration of eldership and the wisdom that accompanies life experiences. Elders throughout California submitted prose and poetry to inspire readers to reflect and embrace their own creativity.

A portion of the proceeds from Gems of Wisdom will help AgeSong Institute fund its Expressive Arts Programs throughout the Bay Area. The goal of the Expressive Arts Programs is to combine creative expressions such as writing, painting, arts and crafts, dance, music, and sculpture with psychotherapy and life coaching.

“I think creativity is the key to the fountain of youth. Gems of Wisdom reflects the creative genius, and wisdom that comes with age. This anthology is a marvelous, brave book, a testimonial to the power of age, and to the spirit. The prose pieces in this book bring the reader into the dreams, hopes and insights of those who embrace age. As we live in an anti-age society, this anthology is important as it represents the age pride and the importance of the creative process. This is a masterpiece! And everyone at every age should read this book.”

-San Francisco Author of The Viagra Diaries and Founder/Age March

“We would like to acknowledge all of the offerings submitted for this publication. Though we could not include all pieces submitted, we the judges and editors were enchanted by the many memories and stories that we were privileged to share..”

-Kimberly Kinser – Poet, Writer, Amherst Artist and Writers Workshop Leader.

“The anthology by AgeSong abounds with playful poems of times well lived! It’s a fine thing to read the poem stories that sing of love songs along with hardship from people who are now in their seventies and eighties, even nineties. The humor will delight you. You may wonder what you’ll be saying at that age!!”

-Janell Moon, Poet Laureate of Emeryville for 2011-2012, Author of Salt and Paper: 65 Candles

Gems of Wisdom
edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2011)
132 pages, $11.95, plus shipping & handling

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Deeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer’s Towards Forgetfulness Care

Deeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer's Towards Forgetfulness CareDeeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer’s Towards Forgetfulness Care
by Nader Robert Shabahangi, Ph.D. & Bogna Szymkiewicz, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2008)
$9.95 eBook – Epub & Mobi

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“If you are a researcher, a hospital worker, a teacher, a caregiver, this book belongs on your desk or at your bedside. Deeper into the Soul will push you further than you meant to go, surprising you into a smile of pleasure, a buzz of new learning, a challenge to your usual interpretation of meaning. Best of all, it will engage and enlarge your heart.”

~Elizabeth Bugental, Psychotherapist and Author of AgeSong: Meditations for Later Years

This book is a practical guide for people who work and live with relatives or residents with symptoms of forgetfulness. The authors offer ideas and tips dealing with symptoms such as aggression and wandering, but they also explore a new way of understanding the people for whom we care. They ask the basic existential questions: What are the possible meanings of forgetfulness? What purpose does it serve for both caregiver and the one experiencing forgetfulness?

In Deeper into the Soul: Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer’s Toward Forgetfulness Care, the authors invite us to shift our attitude toward dementia, or forgetfulness, as they call it. Accompanying us are four characters—a sage, a psychologist, a physician, and an intern—who each sees Forgetfulness from a different viewpoint. The goal is to develop a perspective which includes the basic ingredients of openness, curiosity and acceptance.

Deeper into the Soul reminds us that each stage of forgetfulness is a meaningful part of the life journey, during which people have important emotional and spiritual experiences. The authors remind us that with each effort to understand others, we expand our view of the world. Rather than simply a disease, forgetfulness has purpose and meaning; rather than simply being in need of our care, people with forgetfulness can teach us about life and living; rather than a burden, people with dementia offer us an opportunity to slow down, to be more open and caring, to get in touch with the essence of our human nature. In the process, we deepen ourselves, deepen our souls.

 

“Deeper into the Soul is a beacon of hope and understanding for victims of dementia, their caregivers and families. This remarkable book presents a comprehensive explanation of the challenges of life with Alzheimer’s, and encourages us regarding its possibilities for the future.”
— Edward Voris, Developer, Builder, Fundraiser; Recently diagnosed with Dementia/Alzheimer’s

“In times when our society faces an increasing number of people suffering from dementia, an approach that goes beyond the neurological explanations and adventures into the emotional and spiritual experiences of those suffering and those caregiving brings a perspective that encourages support, understanding, and a very much needed new paradigm to face this challenge. Deeper into the Soul represents that paradigm in which dementia and forgetfulness represent a meaningful part of the life journey.”
— Gloria Cavanaugh, retired President & CEO American Society on Aging/Consultant Institute on Aging

“If you are a researcher, a hospital worker, a teacher, a caregiver, this book belongs on your desk or at your bedside. …Deeper into the Soul will push you further than you meant to go, surprising you into a smile of pleasure, a buzz of new learning, a challenge to your usual interpretation of meaning. Best of all, it will engage and enlarge your heart.”
— Elizabeth Bugental, PhD; Psychotherapist and Author of AgeSong: Mediations for Our Later Years.

 

Deeper into the Soul:
Beyond Dementia and Alzheimer’s Towards Forgetfulness Care

by Nader Robert Shabahangi, Ph.D. & Bogna Szymkiewicz, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2008)
$9.95 eBook – Epub & Mobi

Purchasing Details:

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The Softcover Edition is Being Reprinted!

Would you like to be notified when it is back in stock?
Please email Michelle at books@pacificinstitute.org and she will let you when we have Deeper into the Soul available again.

Ambiguity of Suffering

Ambiguity of SufferingAmbiguity of Suffering book cover
by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2015)
230 pages, $24.95 Softcover, plus shipping

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Suffering holds one of the deeper meanings of life: the ability to connect with your soul, your deep humanity. This connection with suffering pushes us to become ever more aware. Rather than trying to eliminate suffering, we can celebrate it as an opportunity to deepen who we are. This book is my effort to re-introduce a love of philosophy to psychology. As Suzuki Roshi states, we’re beginning to look again at the world from a place of not knowing rather than knowing — a world full of possibility and probability, as opposed to fact and clarity.

From the Preface

The legacy of this book – lived through Nader’s teaching, his numerous elder-focused writings, his groundbreaking work in elder care, and ever rippling into new realms of possibility – is evidence of the vibrancy and passion that reside between its pages. This is not surprising, considering that the ideas put forth in this book are essentially a preface to the decades of Nader’s service to elders. Just as Freud’s Project became an underlying treatise for his later intellectual contributions to psychology,parallels abound between this writing and Nader’s later contributions to existential and process-oriented psychology, as well as his revolutionary impact on elder care.

Nader is acknowledged in the field for his promotion of a new language for what is traditionally known as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Beyond simply reframing these phenomena as experiences of “forgetfulness,” this new language is infused with an appreciation of the utter mystery and depth of the forgetting experience, rather than focusing solely on what is tragic.

 

“A clarion call for those of us privileged to call ourselves awareness workers, psychologists, counselors, social workers, process workers and psychiatrists alike. Nader Shabahangi’s words invite us into a challenging dialogue with Freud and Heidegger, two thinkers whose ideas forever changed our way of understanding the inner and outer world. Above all, Ambiguity of Suffering alarms us to awaken from the prevailing narrative of positivism, and to enter a world rich with ambiguity, mystery, and meaning.”
— Troy Piwowarski, Psy.D., LLP, Licensed Psychotherapist

“In this inspired re-contextualization of psychological epistemology, Dr. Shabahangi problematizes the very grounds upon which mechanistic influences of human behavior are predicated. Categorical diagnoses of the many forms of human suffering reflect an effort to eradicate pathological mental conditions, and yet, as Dr. Shabahangi demonstrates, the experience of making meaning as a human in the world compels suffering — just as the ambiguity of suffering, and all that accompanies its existential significance, nourishes the meaningfulness of being. From the orientation of Heidegerrian philosophy, Ambiguity outlines historical and present-day mechanistic conceptualizations of the human experience, problematizes a reductive understanding of the human mind and spirit, and advocates for a more holistic conceptualization and treatment of the “problem” of psychopathology.”
— Stephanie Rothman, Ph.D.

 

 

Ambiguity of Suffering
by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
230 pages, $24.95 Softcover, plus shipping

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Encounters of the Real Kind, Book 2

Encounters of the Real Kind: Musings, poetry, stories about elders, forgetfulness and life, Book 2Encounters of the Real Kind Book 2 cover
Edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2014)
240 pages; $16.95 Softcover, plus shipping

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This is the second volume in the series of Encounters of the Real Kind. These stories, poems and musings are shared by the 2012/2013 participants in the AgeSong Gero-Wellness training program. The Gero-Wellness Internship program emphasizes that we need to ‘see’ and care for the whole human being, that we learn from our elders about what really matters in life.

With backgrounds in psychology, gerontology, counseling, grief and loss support, and human development, interns come from a variety of schools and universities in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. These interns show an authentic interest and passion in their work with the aging population. They are part of a movement that views aging with respect and awareness, a necessity to become a mature and wise human being. This is a view that looks at the gifts aging afford us.

Pacific Institute teaches a humanistic-existential, process-oriented approach to working with individuals in general and elders specifically. This approach refrains from pathologizing and labeling and tries to understand the appearance of symptoms as important messages to be explored and understood. In such a phenomenological approach, symptoms are understood as solutions to whatever ails or burdens a resident rather than a problem to be eliminated.

All residents at AgeSong Communities have an opportunity to connect with interns who provide emotional and therapeutic support individually and/or in group settings.

Interns spend two or more days a week in an AgeSong community and may accompany residents to group programs, share stories while on walks, connect in a painting class, listen to music, and read poetry together. They also plan trips to the opera or share in a quiet moment. Groups focus on meditation, expressive arts, movement, humor, national and international news, literature, travel and much more. Our interns follow the lead of elders; they show us what is important to them.

An elder once told me “We will all die. Why? Because we can’t take care of each other.”

~ Jacob Engelskirger, Doctoral Intern at AgeSong

I have seen amazing transformation of GeroWellness interns over the past year. When they started AgeSong’s Gerowellness Program, interns thought they were helping members of the community. Upon completion of the program, they came to the realization that they were learning more from members of the community than members of the community were learning from them. The stories in Encounters of the Real Kind (Book 2) document their learning.

~ Sally D. Gelardin, Ed.D., Engagement Director, AgeSong

“I bring the wood and the AgeSong Elders start the fire with their wisdom.”

~ Chaplain Rick, Ministry of Presence

 

Encounters of the Real Kind: Musings, poetry, stories about elders, forgetfulness and life, Book 2
Edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2014)
240 pages; $16.95 Softcover, plus shipping

Purchasing Details:

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Encounters of the Real Kind, Book 1

Encounters of the Real Kind Book 1 book coverEncounters of the Real Kind: Musings, poetry, stories about elders, forgetfulness and life, Book One
Edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2013)

203 pages, $20.00 Softcover, plus shipping; $9.95 eBook – Epub & Mobi

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Elders Academy Press is excited to introduce a new series sponsored by Pacific Institute featuring the contributions of the Pacific Institute Gero-Welness Program interns training within the AgeSong Eldercare Communities: Encounters of the Real Kind.

Encounters of the Real Kind are exactly that: deep, life-changing meetings between human beings.

The Pacific Institute Gero-Wellness training emphasizes that we need to ‘see’ and care for the whole human being. It teaches that symptoms are meaningful and important signals for a deeper understanding of each person, that these symptoms need to be met with curiosity and respect, with an attitude of wonder and love.

There is never anything ‘wrong’ with a person. Rather, we ask: what is right about what is happening now? Where does it want to lead us? How are we to understand its message to us? We see our elders with eyes of love, not with eyes that look for pathologies and disease.

Elders, with all of their richness, depth and life-experience, are the most beautiful teachers in this world. These teachers provide our interns – but really all of us who take time to be with them – the privilege to deeply experience and understand what it means to live a life, to have lived a life. Elders give those who will allow themselves to be present with them an exceptional opportunity to grow into a full human being.

This is not an easy journey. Interns face the complexity of the question of human identity and the fear and anxiety of disability and dying. They begin to understand the difference between being-with and doing-to and learn the art of unfolding a person’s process. They experience the many forms of forgetfulness and states of awareness, the many ways of communication, verbal and non-verbal. They begin to appreciate the quality and subjective nature of time, of slowing down, of being present and of listening deeply. They learn to establish a trusting relationship and experience the richness and challenge of hospice work. They learn about mindfulness, about focused attention, building community, and the meaning of isolation and loneliness. They learn to be with coma, trauma, and the many other forms and meanings of dependencies. They learn about the finitude of life, about what really matters – to them and others. Interns begin to grasp the difference between information and knowledge, between knowledge and wisdom.

Hearing an elder speak about life, sitting quietly next to a forgetful elder holding hands, walking slowly with an elder noticing one’s breath, the breeze on one’s face – these are encounters of the real kind. They present us with an inkling of the dimension of the human soul and spirit.

These encounters change your life.

Encounters of the Real Kind: Musings, poetry, stories about elders, forgetfulness and life, Book 1
Edited by Nader R. Shabahangi, Ph.D.
Elders Academy Press (2013)
203 pages, $20.00 Softcover, plus shipping; $9.95 eBook – Epub & Mobi

Purchasing Details:

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