NPI Conferences 2023-2024

NPI’s 2023-2024 Conference Schedule

Upcoming Conferences

Megan Rundel

Psychedelics in Psychoanalysis

Megan Rundel, Ph.D.

Saturday, November 11th, 2023, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

ASSEMBLY at Flight
1715 Flight Wy Ste 100, Tustin, CA 92782
& on ZOOM

4 CE Credits

Course Description:

In this course, we will explore the psychedelic renaissance in mental health treatment and how it is relevant to psychoanalysis. We will consider the history of psychedelic use, and cultural issues that exert strong influence on our attitudes toward them. We will learn about the major psychedelic compounds being studied for efficacy in mental health disorders, their efficacy, mode of action, legal status, and contraindications. Then we will consider how psychoanalysts are uniquely well positioned to understand expanded states of consciousness, and explore clinical issues in working with patients who use psychedelics.

Course Objectives:

  1. Describe the history of psychedelic use in many cultures around the world, and discuss the modern history of psychedelics in the West, including the impact of the War on Drugs on clinical research.
  2. List the major psychedelic agents currently being studied for their efficacy with mental health disorders, their efficacy, mode of action, legal status, and contraindications.
  3. Discuss psychoanalytic models for expanded states of consciousness, and how they explain and support neuroscientific research on psychedelic action.
  4. Explain clinical considerations that come up when psychedelics enter a treatment, including transference and countertransference paradigms.


Megan Rundel, Ph.D. is a practitioner of psychedelic-assisted psychoanalysis in Oakland, CA. She is also a meditation teacher in the Zen Buddhist tradition. Dr. Rundel is a Personal and Supervising Analyst, and on the faculty, at the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California.
If you are running into the ‘Page Not Found’ error page, please register by contacting the NPI office at [email protected] or 714-505-9080
Christopher Christian

The Return of Culture to Psychoanalysis:
Reflections on Psychoanalytic Training and New Directions

Christopher Christian, Ph.D.

Saturday, October 7th, 2023, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

This course is offered on ZOOM

Course Description:

There was a period in the United States during the 1930s and 40s that was marked by a vibrant interest in how the fields of cultural anthropology and psychoanalysis could inform each other. By the 1990s the psychoanalytic landscape had changed considerably, and any interest in cultural psychoanalysis appeared to have all but vanished. Candidates entering analytic training during this period faced two pernicious biases that converged into a type of conventional wisdom with a deleterious impact on training: On the one hand there was the implicit belief that any interest by a candidate in cultural issues suggested a less serious interest in psychoanalysis; and on the other, there was the belief that psychoanalysis was simply irrelevant to the suffering of minoritized populations. In this presentation, after revisiting the decline of cultural psychoanalysis in the United States, the author will discuss the treatment of a patient presenting with a culture bound syndrome known as ataque de nervios. The treatment challenges biases within psychoanalysis and about psychoanalysis. The presentation will conclude by arguing for a new paradigm of cultural theorizing.

Course Objectives:

  1. Understand the history of the early movement of cultural psychoanalysis in the United States.
  2. Identify historical antecedents and current misconceptions that contribute(d) to the marginalization of Latinx populations from psychoanalysis.
  3. Critically evaluate the concept of culture-bound syndromes via an illustration of ataque de nervios.


Chris Christian, Ph.D. is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Psychoanalytic Psychology. He obtained a PhD in clinical psychology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst; earned a Certificate in Psychoanalysis from the Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research (IPTAR), where he is past Dean, and a Training and Supervising Analyst. His most recent book, Psychoanalysis in the Barrios: Race, Class, and the Unconscious, with Patricia Gherovici, is the winner of the distinguished 2020 Gradiva Award, and winner of the American Board & Academy of Psychoanalysis Book Prize. He is co-editor of Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Conflict with Morris Eagle and David Wolitzky; and co-editor of The Second Century of Psychoanalysis: Evolving Perspectives on Therapeutic Action with Michael J. Diamond. He is an Assistant Clinical Professor, Yale School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry; Faculty at the Western New England Psychoanalytic Society; Professor in the Contemporary Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy program, Ramon Llull University (Barcelona); and member of the Los Angeles Institute and Society for Psychoanalytic Studies; the American Psychoanalytic Association; and the International Psychoanalytical Association. His forthcoming book is titled: Psychoanalysis and the Corporeal: New Studies on the Psyche-Soma Connection, Somatization, and Body Dysmorphia to be published by Routledge.
If you are running into the ‘Page Not Found’ error page, please register by contacting the NPI office at [email protected] or 714-505-9080

Past conferences in 2022-2023

You may purchase recordings of recent conferences below


Cross Cultural Encounters: Bridging Worlds of Difference

newly mandated class

(6 hours of continuing education credit in multicultural diversity and law and ethics for the California Board of Psychology and the California Board of Behavioral Sciences)
Saturday, March 25th, 2023, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Tustin Library Multi Purpose Room, 345 E. Main Street, Tustin, CA 92780
Course Description:
Multiculturalism is rapidly becoming recognized as the forth major force in psychology alongside the traditional psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, and humanistic psychologies.  Central to this course is the idea that we can never know the fullness of anyone else’s cultural identifications and orientations.  In this sense all relationships are cross-cultural encounters.  How can each of us in our professional work learn to open ourselves to differences, to diversity, to ethnicity, to ethnosexuality, to our own prejudices and to prejudices and hatreds aimed at us?
The ground-breaking work of Derald Wing Sue, Allan Ivey, Paul Petersen, Alan Roland, Charles Ridley, Coronel West, Nancy Boyd-Franklin, Geert Hofstede, Neil Altman, RoseMarie Pérez-Foster, Joane Nagel, Takeo Doi, Suarez-Orozco, and numerous others will be considered.  Participants will be encouraged to discuss some of their own cross-cultural encounters in a workshop setting.
  1. The importance of defining our own fears and prejudices and working towards overcoming them
  2. Issues surrounding the ethnosexual frontier and how they emerge in the transference/countertransference matrix
  3. Issues in population changes, immigration, class differences, and global diversity
  4. Complications of inter-group prejudice, the dynamics of hatred, and the contributions of fear and uncertainty to inter-ethnic tensions
  5. Racism, racial prejudice, definitions of race and racism, covert and implied racism
  6. Running throughout the course, are issues of laws and ethics, and how they need to be applied in multi cultural diversity settings.
  1. To state how multiculturalism is coming to constitute the fourth force in the clinical disciplines
  2. To formulate the major concerns of multicultural approaches to psychodiagnosis and psychotherapy
  3. To specify what is involved when any two people attempt to bridge their worlds of cultural difference
  4. To define a multi-ethnic approach to interpersonal relationships that denies the objective reality of race while honoring the subjective realities of diverse cultural, racial, and ethnic identities
  5. To define how immigration, children of immigration, central city living, class and ethnic differences all have an impact on clinical practice
  6. To state how to identify the ethnosexual frontier and how it manifests in the transference/countertransference matrix.
  7. To state the many complications necessarily involved in applying laws and ethics in various kinds of culturally diverse situations
Lawrence E. Hedges, Ph.D., Psy.D., ABPP is a psychologist-psychoanalyst in private practice in Orange, California, specializing in the training of psychotherapists and psychoanalysts. He is director of the Listening Perspectives Study Center and the founding director of the Newport Psychoanalytic Institute in Tustin, California where he is a supervising and training psychoanalyst. He has been awarded honorary membership in the American Psychoanalytic Association. Dr. Hedges is author of numerous papers and books including Cross- cultural Encounters: Bridging Worlds of Difference (2013), Listening Perspectives in Psychotherapy (1983 & 2003), Interpreting the Countertransference (1992), Strategic Emotional Involvement (1996), and Facing the Challenge of Liability in Psychotherapy: Practicing Defensively (2000 & 2007). To learn more about Dr. Hedges and his work, go to
If you wish to purchase the conference recording, please contact [email protected]

The Dreaming Brain: Implications for Psychoanalysis

Presenter:  Dr. Mark Solms

Saturday March 18th, 2023, 9am- 1:20pm PST


Professor Mark Solms was born in 1961. He was educated at Pretoria Boys’ School and the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. He emigrated to England in 1988. There he worked at University College London (Dept of Psychology) and the Royal London Hospital (Dept of Neurosurgery) while he trained at the Institute of Psychoanalysis. He returned to South Africa in 2002, and now holds the Chair of Neuropsychology at the Neuroscience Institute of the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital. His rating by the National Research Foundation is ‘A1’ and he is a Member of the Academy of Science of South Africa. He has received numerous prizes and honours, such as the Sigourney Prize, the IPA’s Outstanding Scientific Achievement Award and Honorary Fellowship of the American College of Psychiatrists. He is Training Director of the South African Psychoanalytical Association, Director of the Science Dept of the American Psychoanalytic Association and Research Chair of the International Psychoanalytical Association. He has published 350 articles in both neuroscientific and psychoanalytic journals, and he has authored eight books. The Brain and the Inner World was translated into 13 languages. His collected papers were published recently as The Feeling Brain. His latest book, The Hidden Spring, appeared in early 2021.  He is the editor and translator of the forthcoming Revised Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud (24 vols) and Complete Neuroscientific Works of Sigmund Freud (4 vols)


Oedipus Wrecks: Infidelity as Manic Defense

Presenter:  Dr. Shelley Nathans

Saturday February 25th, 2023, 9:00am – 4:20 pm

Tustin Library Multi Purpose Room, 345 E. Main Street Tustin, 92780   & on ZOOM

The paths leading to infidelity in a couple’s relationship are manifold and diverse; there is no singular cause, no simple, linear route. Using a contemporary Kleinian framework and a case example, Shelley Nathans, Ph.D. will present her paper “Infidelity as Manic Defense”, in which she describes some of the important theoretical issues relevant to understanding affairs. The focus of this paper is on the problems that one or both of the partners in a couple may have with mourning past or impending loss, and the consequent infidelity that may result from a manic attempt to replace depression or psychic pain with excitement. A developmental orientation will be used to delineate a range of psychological dilemmas that contribute to infidelity, including claustrophobic anxieties, difficulties with mourning past or impending loss, Oedipal problems and separation issues.  Dr. Nathans will discuss the challenges of working with couples struggling with the impact of an affair on their relationship and she will describe some of the complex technical issues in such cases.

Dr. Shelley Nathans, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist with 35 years of experience as an individual and couple psychotherapist. She is a member of the teaching faculty at the California Pacific Medical Center in the Department of Psychiatry, The Psychoanalytic Couple Psychotherapy Group, and The Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California. She has completed the Tavistock Center for Couple Relations Advanced Training in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy and is on the International Advisory Board for the journal, Psychoanalytic Couple and Family Psychoanalysis. She is the director and producer of the film, Robert Wallerstein: 65 Years at the Center of Psychoanalysis. She has published in Psychoanalytic Dialogues, Couple and Family Psychoanalysis, and fort da, and she is the co-editor (with Milton Schaefer) of the book, Couples on the Couch: Psychoanalytic Couple Psychotherapy and the Tavistock Model (Routledge, 2017).

MJ Diamond Photo

Masculinity And Its Discontents: A Clinical Perspective On the Male Psyche and Manhood’s Inherent Tensions

Presenter: Michael J. Diamond, Ph.D., FIPA

Saturday, January 28, 2023, 10:30 AM – 1:45 PM PST



This clinically-oriented conference offers a contemporary psychoanalytic perspective on male gender that rejects outdated aspects of binary reasoning to view male identity as an ongoing dynamic process that incorporates rather than rejects what tends to be regarded as “feminine.”  Drawing upon Michael Diamond’s recently published book by Routledge, Masculinity and Its Discontents: The Male Psyche and the Inherent Tensions of Maturing Manhoodthat describes the complex developmental struggle that men must undergo to build their identities throughout their life, this workshop presents ways of understanding male patients and their efforts to navigate their primordial vulnerability and the tenuous nature of masculinity.  Clinical material is used to help psychoanalysts, psychotherapists and other mental health practitioners further their clinical understanding and technical repertoire.  Participants will have an opportunity to question the presenter and clarify the ideas throughout the session.

Michael J. Diamond is a Training and Supervising Analyst, Los Angeles Institute and Society for Psychoanalytic Studies.  He has authored over ninety articles and chapters as well as five books, including Ruptures in the American Psyche: Containing Destructive Populism in Perilous Times, My Father Before Me: How Fathers and Sons Influence Each Other Throughout Their Lives, and The Second Century of Psychoanalysis: Evolving Perspectives on Therapeutic Action.  He is in private practice in Los Angeles, while remaining active in teaching, supervising, and writing.

[Note: Michael Diamond’s book, Masculinity and Its Discontents: The Male Psyche and the Inherent Tensions of Maturing Manhood, is available for purchase directly from the Routledge website at:].

adrienne headshot

Two visions of Psychoanalysis in Social Crisis

Presenter: Dr. Adrienne Harris

October 8th, 2022, 9-4:20 pm PST


About this talk

This program consists of two parts:

Part 1 – The Pandemic as an apres coup

Part 2 – The work of Sandor Ferenczi and the Hungarian Psychoanalytic Society

The work of Ferenczi, the Hungarian Psychoanalytic world and the Unwelcome Child. This lecture will contextualize Ferenczi’s life and work in the context of the Hungarian Psychoanalytic Movement and in the context of political and social unrest.

Dr. Adrienne Harris, Ph.D. is Faculty and Supervisor at New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis. She is on the faculty and is a supervisor at the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California. She is a member and Training Analyst in the IPA. She is an Editor at Psychoanalytic Dialogues, and Studies In Gender and Sexuality. In 2009, She, Lewis Aron, and Jeremy Safron established the Sandor Ferenczi Center at the New School University. She, Eyal Rozmarin and Steven Kuchuck, co-edit the Book Series Relational Perspectives in Psychoanalysis. She is an editor of the IPA ejournal : Psychoanalysis.Today

Past conferences in 2021-2022

Dr. Lynne Layton
Dr. Lynne Layton
Dr. Medria Connolly
Dr. Medria Connolly
Dr. Bryan Nichols
Dr. Bryan Nichols

Social Psychoanalysis and an Ethic of Repair

Presenters: Dr. Lynne Layton, Dr. Medria Connolly, and Dr. Bryan Nichols

March 5th, 2022, 9-4pm, ZOOM. Those who were unable to attend the event may purchase a recording-only ticket option, and will be sent a link to the recording afterwards.

About this lecture

The program begins with a talk on what a social psychoanalysis might look like in the clinic and draws on some earlier psychoanalysts’ concepts that have connected the social world and the psychic world without reducing one to the other. Exploring identity formation in cultural contexts and within various power hierarchies, Dr. Layton introduces the concept of normative unconscious processes, a concept connecting the psychic and the social that specifically addresses the ways that racism, heterosexism, classism and other social inequalities are unconsciously enacted in the clinic and culture. We will then explore how therapists can resist unconsciously replicating such cultural inequalities. We will then take up the ways cultural inequalities are unconsciously reproduced in the wider circles of contemporary institutional and sociocultural life. In this part of the program, Dr. Layton, Dr. Nichols, and Dr. Connolly discuss the psychological case for reparations for slavery and its afterlives. Our conversations here, too, explore how we, as citizens and therapists, both unconsciously replicate and can resist replicating harmful, unequal relations. We will think together about how to address the places in our different subjective and communal worlds where harm has been done–and engage together on how to make repair.


When Secrets Emerge in Psychotherapy: New Perspectives on The Body, Somatic Countertransference and Self-Care in the Treatment of Eating Disorders

Presenter: Kathryn J. Zerbe, MD, FABP, FAED

January 29th, 2022 , 9 – 1:15pm, ZOOM. Those who were unable to attend the event may purchase a recording-only ticket option, and will be sent a link to the recording afterwards.

About this lecture

The body-mind relationship is receiving new attention in psychodynamic clinical work in the 21st century. In this presentation we will focus on the treatment of eating disorder patients as a key example of how the clinician addresses both the body and the mind in therapy. The countertransference impact on the therapist of treating a group of patients who keep secrets and the role this plays in the development of somatic (body) countertransference therapist will be demonstrated in clinical case examples. Emphasis will be placed on the therapist’s self-care and resilience when working with challenging and often refractory patients.


The Talking Cure: A Neuropsychoanalytic Perspective

Presenter: Mark Solms, Neuropsychologist and Psychoanalyst

September 25th, 2021, ZOOM. Those who were unable to attend the event may purchase a recording-only ticket option, and will be sent a link to the recording afterwards.

About this lecture

This three-part lecture by Mark Solms will describe some recent developments in the neurosciences which have implications for the theory and practice of psychoanalysis. The first lecture will focus on changes in our understanding of what is conscious and unconscious in the brain. This requires us to distinguish sharply between what Freud called the ‘id’ and the ‘system Unconscious’. The implications for the theory of ‘repression’ are particularly important clinically. The second lecture will focus on what Freud called ‘drive theory’. There are not two emotional drives at work in the brain but rather seven. Since these represent the basic emotional needs of the human being, the clinical implications of this new classification of the drives are immense. The third lecture focusses on these clinical implications, in a practical way. The main issues that will be discussed are (a) the mode of therapeutic action of the ‘talking cure’, (b) our understanding of ‘transference’ and (c) the importance of ‘working through’.

There was a 1.5 hour follow-up discussion group on October 16, 2021 led by Dr. Terence Ford.

I am text block. Click edit button to change this text. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.

I am text block. Click edit button to change this text. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.