In the last three decades there has been an exponential increase in publications on the related areas of psychotherapy, Buddhism, spirituality and meditation. Buddhist-influenced therapies such as Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Core Process Psychotherapy and Hakomi are now in the mainstream of psychotherapeutic practices. There has also been a significant increase in the number of helping professionals who are committed and practising Buddhists or who have an interest in Buddhism.
The purpose of The Australian Association of Buddhist Counsellors and Psychotherapists (AABCAP) is to bring therapists together in order to discuss, learn and study the two disciplines of psychotherapy and Buddhism, with the purpose of integrating their experience and knowledge into daily life and their work. The intention is that we all benefit from the depth of Buddhist psychology and practice. There is much to benefit us, as well as others, in our attempt to integrate Western Psychotherapy with Eastern Buddhism. AABCAP has developed a two-year professional training course in Buddhism and Psychotherapy, the first course commenced in July 2008. The next training course will begin in February 2014.
The objectives of AABCAP are to:
- provide a philosophical base, standards, and ethics for the practice of Buddhist Influenced Counselling and Psychotherapy (BICP);
- foster the professional development of full members;
- maintain a professional organisational structure that supports the practice of BICP;
- provide education, training and research in BICP;
- promote BICP in the community;
- provide accreditation practices that will support the highest quality practice in BICP; and
- work collaboratively and beneficially with other Buddhist Organisations.