Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) is a system of psychotherapy developed by Professor Paul Gilbert that integrates techniques from cognitive behavioural therapy with concepts from evolutionary psychology, social psychology, developmental psychology, Buddhist psychology, and neuroscience. Its main technique is compassionate mind training which teaches people to learn compassion, designed to transform problematic cognitive and emotional patterns. The theoretical basis of CFT is biological evolution, which gives us insights into how our emotional systems developed and operate and how we can gain control over their negative impact.
Clients are taught how to manage these systems more effectively and gain the ability to respond appropriately, rather than simply to react, to life situations. Human compassion is of course not the possession of modern psychology nor a new psychological discovery. Greek and Roman philosophers were aware of the way feelings and emotions could lead people down misleading pathways. Compassion was seen as a virtue. All the major world religions cite compassion as a sacred human condition. In CFT ancient wisdom and modern neuroscience come together.
The Dalai Lama once said that "compassion is a necessity, not a luxury; it is a question of human survival".
"Causes and Consequences of Compassion". University of Iowa.
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