CBCT News and Events

December 7, 2023

CBCT® Teacher Training in India

CBCT® and SEE Learning India are once again partnering to train a new cohort of CBCT teachers in India. From January 14-17, 2024 a group of approximately ten teachers in training will gather at the Drepung Loseling Meditation and Science Center in Mundgod, Karnataka for a four-day retreat led by Dr. Lobsang Tenzin Negi, executive director of the Emory Compassion Center and the developer of CBCT. The retreat is an opportunity for the new group to deepen their knowledge and practice of CBCT under the guidance of Dr. Negi.This will be followed by a two-day intensive workshop facilitated by Senior CBCT instructors Reshma Piramal, Neha Bhatia and Carol Beck. 


During the workshop, the group will focus on the pedagogy of CBCT while also delving into the research supporting CBCT as a means to increase personal resiliency and well-being while expanding the practice of compassion in a more inclusive and sustainable manner. After the live retreat and workshop, the group will continue with an eight-session long practicum over Zoom to further develop their teaching skills. After the successful completion of the practicum and the supervised co-teaching of a course, participants will become certified CBCT instructors. In 2021, the first training of CBCT teachers in India was organized by SEE Learning India and despite the challenges of the pandemic, an exceptional group of eleven successfully completed their certification. That course was facilitated by Penny Clements and Carol Beck.


September 28, 2023

CBCT® for Breast Cancer Survivors and Caregiving Partners 

If you or someone you know is a breast cancer survivor and is interested in participating, click here to learn more: https://www.nursing.arizona.edu/content/breast-cancer-suport-project

Active treatment for breast cancer typically includes months of surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. When treatment ends, survivors and their caregivers often feel disconnected, anxious that cancer may return, depressed due to the many losses they’re handling, and unsure about ‘the new normal’ of how their lives will look like going forward.

To address some of these psychological factors of survivorship, a five-year study was launched with our long-time partners at the University of Arizona to examine the effectiveness of CBCT as a support for the wellbeing of breast cancer survivors, who learn and practice compassion training along with caregiving partners. The study is also looking at the effectiveness of providing CBCT online with the hope of providing courses to people who live in distant or rural areas.


During this study, participants take an 8-week CBCT course online via Zoom. The first cohort of participants completed the course in July and the second cohort begins on September 30, 2023. One of the course co-teachers, Sally Dodds, shared, “It’s wonderful to see how quickly CBCT can help participants find a sense of calm and connection. And we’re seeing how eager they are to connect and share their breast cancer experiences with others in the same situation.” The SUPORT (Survivors and Partners Online Together) Project is funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute to the University of Arizona College of Nursing. Thaddeus Pace, Ph.D., is the Principal Investigator.


August 31, 2023

Nine Years Training Compassion at the Emory School of Medicine


Nine Years Training Compassion at the Emory School of Medicine Compassion science has received much attention in the last decade, especially in healthcare. Drs. Trzeciak and Mazzarelli published Compassionomics in 2019, a meta-analysis of over 200 studies on compassion in healthcare, concluding definitively: “Compassion matters not only in meaningful ways, but also in measurable ways” and that compassion “belongs in the domain of evidence-based medicine.” The concluding chapter is titled simply: “Compassion as an Antidote to Burnout.” CBCT® (Cognitively Based Compassion Training) offers a comprehensive method for training compassion that draws on the ancient lojong tradition of Indo-Tibetan Buddhism. Its approach is supported by current scientific research in fields such as evolutionary biology, psychology, and neuroscience. Since 2014 CBCT has been offered each semester to Emory School of Medicine faculty, staff, and students. A randomized control study by Professor Jennifer Mascaro, PhD, found that CBCT significantly correlated with increased compassion and decreases in loneliness and depression in second year medical students. Over the years, a number of outstanding physicians have become certified CBCT Teachers and have taught at the Emory School of Medicine, including Ellen Coggeshall, Stephen Blount, Charles Lane ‘23, and most recently William J. Eley, Executive Dean of Education.

Registration is open for the 8-Week Fall 2023 CBCT for Emory SOM Courses, free for all those associated with the SOM:

The course for faculty and staff will meet from 5:30 – 6:45pm on Wednesdays from September 20 - November 8, 2023.

Taught by course developer Professor Lobsang Tenzin Negi, PhD, and Dr. Eley.

The course for students has two options:

  • 5:15 – 6:30pm on Mondays, September 18 – November 6, 2023, or
  • 5:15 – 6:30pm on Tuesdays, September 19 – November 7, 2023.

All courses are held in person at the School of Medicine.

Click here to learn more and to register: https://www.compassion.emory.edu/cbct-compassion-training/cbct-courses/school-of-medicine.html


July1, 2023


Come learn about innovations in healthcare from the Compassion-Centered Spiritual Health (CCSH™), a collaboration between the Compassion Center and Spiritual Health at the Woodruff Health Sciences Center. CCSH™ is designed to bolster the well-being, resilience, and compassion of healthcare patients and staff by augmenting spiritual health education and best practices with CBCT®. In these presentations, each CCSH Fellow will present a creative project integrating insights from CCSH into their two years of practice as spiritual health clinicians in the Emory hospital system. Details and registration link below:

July 10, 2023, EUHM, Davis Fischer Classroom 1 2:30pm to 4:30pm: "Empathic Balance and Crisis Support in Code Responses" by Karen Anderson and "Building Resilience in Trauma Informed Care" by Beverly Ellis.   

July 17, 2023, EUOSH, MOB 507 2:30pm to 4:30pm: "The Power of Empathy: A Journey from 'Fixing' to Becoming an Empathic Listener" by Thelma Goodrum and "My Journey with CBCT®, CCSH, and my ADHD Diagnosis: How the Models of CBCT and CCSH Offer Flexible Options in the Provision of Spiritual Care" by Dallas Thompson.    

July 24, 2023, EDH, Keeton Auditorium 2:30pm to 4:30pm: "Compassion-Centered Spiritual Health (CCSH) at the End of Life" by Melanie Johnson and "Crisis, Compassion, and Co- Regulation: Utilizing Attunement in CCSH to Mitigate Staff Distress During Crisis" by Hannah Sikes.    

July 31, 2023, EUOSH, MOB 507 2:30pm to 4:30pm: "Cultivating the Power of Shifting Perspectives: Using the Enduring Capabilities of CBCT® and the skills of CCSH” by Young Ko and "Cultivating Self-Compassion in Spirituality Groups on a Psychiatry Unit through a CCSH Lens” by Jason Ranke.    

August 7, 2023, EUH, Classroom A 2:30pm to 4:30pm: "Embracing Grief Through Compassion" by April Jones and "Searching for the Perfect Pitch : Utilizing the Attunement Process of CCSH" by Johan Shin.  

ALL REGISTRATION LINKS AVAILABLE HERE: https://ccsh.emory.edu/events/index.html


June 1, 2023

Compassion Training Impacts Healthcare System in India


According to Forbes India, CBCT® has "already impacted 1200 healthcare providers across 20 districts in Bihar towards building compassionate leadership in the public healthcare system. This has created compassionate leaders at every level, from the security guards at the point of entry to the hospital manager." Improving the healthcare system is part of India's larger goal to become a developed nation by 2047. This report confirms what we all know at heart – that compassion is integral to delivering quality services respectfully and making them available, affordable, and accessible. The full article is available here.


May 10, 2023

Honoring Nobility

Compassion illumines the path to freedom for a soul seeking the embrace of a soft and gentle peace.


Recently I signed a form declaring my intention to bequeath assets. They are to be dedicated to CBCT® (Cognitively-Based Compassion Training), a facet of Emory’s Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics. What does that have to do with honoring nobility? To begin, those dedicated funds are there in large part because my father had a strong work ethic and a desire to care for my mother when he died. After he died, my mother was a good steward of those resources. And generous, too. Her heartfelt desire was to protect them so that she could pass them on to me and my sister for our well-being. And I’m able to protect them. My life has been blessed with the generosity of others besides my mother. Their acts of kindness have contributed to a financial stability that allows me to leave my invested assets untouched. As I approach the end of my life, I’m seeking further stewardship of those funds. Here’s where trust rides on nobility. I’ve come to know Dr. Lobsang Tenzin Negi, Timothy Harrison, and others who are a part of advancing CBCT for a safer, kinder world. I’ve observed their devoted efforts to uphold ethical and moral principles themselves and to teach mind-training techniques that foster the development of those noble character traits, contributing to human thriving. Compassion illumines the path to freedom for a soul seeking the embrace of a soft and gentle peace.  

While taking CBCT myself, I faced my own suffering from the effects of eight years of chronic, debilitating Lyme disease. While engaging with my own intense emotional pain, I came to understand the suffering of others. And I yearned to ease their pain. I bow to the soundness of the CBCT process as an agent of positive change, and one our world needs for survival. We humans cannot commit atrocities if we can feel empathy and compassion for others. I bow to those who do the work at Emory’s Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics. I trust them to steward my family’s funds, serving humanity with wise and loving hearts. I trust them and those who come after them to be my hands when mine can no longer do the work of making this world a better place to be. While ending my remarks about legacy making, my mother’s smile brightens my face. I feel heartfelt gratitude for the opportunity to be generous. And for the opportunity to honor the nobility of all of the people and circumstances that make that possible.  

Carolyn Graham 

To learn more about including the Compassion Center in your estate plans, please contact Mark Hughes at mark.hughes@emory.edu. 


April 28, 2023

The Torch and Trumpet Award was presented to Executive Director Lobsang Tenzin Negi


The Torch and Trumpet Award was presented to Executive Director Lobsang Tenzin Negi, PhD, at the opening session of the Science on Spirituality Symposium by George Grant, MDiv, PhD, Executive Director of Spiritual Health and co-director and co-founder of the Emory Center for Psychedelics and Spirituality. Spiritual Health at Emory Healthcare is a longtime partner with CBCT in the creation of the research-based chaplaincy program, Compassion-Centered Spiritual Health. Dr. Negi’s work with CBCT began with the seed planted by His Holiness the Dalai Lama during a visit to Emory University in 1998.

Addressing the graduating class, the Dalai Lama said, “Education is the way to achieve far-reaching results; it is the proper way to promote compassion and tolerance in society.” This visit to Emory by His Holiness led to the creation of the Emory-Tibet Partnership, now called the Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics. A few years later, it was one of Dr. Negi’s students who encouraged him to begin a mediation practice for Emory students and the community. CBCT developed soon into a research-based meditation protocol. Since those early days, CBCT has grown into an international discipline, translated in many languages, taught in numerous countries, and is one of the most researched compassion training protocols today. CBCT has been offered for many years to faculty, staff, and students at the Emory School of Medicine and for continuing nursing education credit through the Emory Nursing Experience. CBCT is also central to the training of chaplains in Emory’s pioneering Compassion-Centered Spiritual Health program, active now in all twelve of the Emory hospitals and at Grady Hospital in downtown Atlanta. Dr. Negi regularly teaches the CBCT Foundation Course to in person and online to a worldwide audience.

A former monk, Negi began his monastic training at the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics in Dharamasala, India, and continued his education at Drepung Loseling Monastery in south India, where in 1994 he received the Geshe Lharampa degree – the highest academic degree granted in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. Dr. Negi completed his PhD at Emory University in 1999; his interdisciplinary dissertation centered on traditional Buddhist and contemporary Western approaches to emotions and their impact on wellness. His current research focuses on the complementarity of modern science and contemplative practice.

To watch the introduction of the Science on Spirituality Symposium and award presentation to Dr. Negi, click the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fip2FjOselg


February 27, 2023

Edgar González-Hernández to Lead Teacher Certification for Spanish-Speakers


An experienced CBCT® practitioner, Dr. González-Hernández reports, “The CBCT community has been a source of inspiration and support in different aspects of my life.  It is comforting to know that there are a growing number of people inspired and excited in cultivating a good heart to make the world a more nurturing and kinder place to live.”

Edgar holds a Doctor in Psychology from Valencia International University in Spain and is especially interested in implementing CBCT® for individuals who have experienced psychological trauma, adapting the resources of contemplative science to modern psychology and neuropsychology, and investigating the role of contemplative practices as a resource for preventing psychopathology. His current research at the Universidad de las Américas Puebla (UDLAP) in Mexico includes collaboration with the World Health Organization, adapting tools and resources to evaluate and address the health implications in adulthood of adverse childhood experiences.  

Edgar is lead author of the 2018 article: “Cognitively-Based Compassion Training (CBCT) in Breast Cancer Survivors: A Randomized Clinical Trial Study,” published in the journal Integrative Cancer Therapies.  Based on this research, he co-edited the 2021 book, Heroínas compasivas.  La vida como supervivientes de cáncer de mama [translation: Compassionate Heroines: Life as Breast Cancer Survivors] with Rebeca Diego Pedro and Lobsang Tenzin Negi, developer of CBCT®.  This book provides a fictionalized account of Esperanza, a woman struggling with cancer, as she experiences the full sequence of CBCT’s training exercises.  The book explores the resilience, self-compassion, and sense of purpose that can emerge through compassion training, and it provides encouragement and hope to cancer survivors and their caregivers, as well as to clinicians, counselors, psychologists, and meditation practitioners who work with serious illness in any form.

As happy as we are to welcome Edgar to this role, the occasion is tinged with sadness as we continue to grieve the passing of our dear friend and collaborator, Samuel Fernandez-Carriba, PhD. This program would not be what it is today without the skill, intelligence, and exuberant energy of Samuel, who pioneered the Spanish-speaking CBCT Teacher Certification program from its early planning stages in 2018 all the way through to late 2022 when a third encounter with cancer took his life. The Center intends to honor his legacy by carrying on his vision for spreading the practice of compassion and compassion training with enthusiasm and hope, especially on the Spanish-speaking international stage.

For those interested in the Spanish-speaking CBCT® Teacher Certification program, please reach out to us to let us know. The start date of the next cohort is not yet determined, but we are gathering names and we can connect you with Edgar if you would like to learn more.

The English-speaking CBCT® Teacher Certification Program is currently accepting applications for a new cohort starting in June 2023.  The program can be attended entirely online and has included individuals from all over the US and from Brazil, Chile, France, Germany, Israel, Mexico, Peru, and Spain.  For details, access the program overview here


January 31, 2023

Posttraumatic Growth in the Pandemic


Though numerous studies examine posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and burnout among healthcare providers, the COVID-19 pandemic revealed the growing need to study and support posttraumatic growth, a positive psychological shift that can be experienced after a crisis or traumatic event. A recently published paper in The Journal of Nursing Administration reported promising outcomes of the “Compassion & Growth Workshop,” a new virtual intervention aimed at frontline nurses across the US during the pandemic. Covering the topics of grounding, nurturance, and growth, the workshop drew on CBCT® along with other contemplative interventions to provide six hours of interactive training.

CBCT® Senior Instructors Timothy Harrison, Associate Director for CBCT®, and Michelle Heker Liberman, Instructional Content Developer, consulted on the intervention design, along with CBCT® Instructor Deborah Disney, LCPC. Harrison co-authored the paper, and Liberman and Disney co-taught the sessions on nurturance. Through trauma-informed education and exercises combining emotional awareness with visualization, the nurses participating in the study learned skills to improve self-regulation, implement cognitive reframing strategies, and infuse compassion more intentionally into their daily lives.  

Visit the CBCT research page to learn more about the research.


December 8, 2022

The next Teacher Certification starts in June 2023. For more information, click here. 


Alessandra Arce Hai 

2022 cohort member 

Alessandra Arce Hai (Brazil) with a background in Education shares her perspective. 

“These first two phases of the CBCT® Teacher Certification were a wonderful and challenging experience for me.  Every text, discussion, and orientation broadened my perspective about others and all living creatures on the planet, including myself.  It challenged my old assumptions and ideas, transforming and transmuting it in a new form of seeing, feeling, and acting. CBCT® brought to me a holistic approach where science, ethics and spirituality are connected and intertwined in an inclusive and altruistic way.” 


George Brooks 

2022 cohort member 

George Brooks (New York, US) with a background in Business shares his perspective. 

“This was the first program I have seen that provides a concise framework for the development of one's practice in compassion. I learned about the conditions that allow compassion to emerge and how to use discernment to practice smart compassion. Interestingly, each module and each step are a needed aid that helps us regain our own mental clarity, resilience, and personal wellness. You can only give what you have. And once you fortify yourself with mental clarity, resilience, and self-compassion, you can then proceed to practice the steps to open yourself up to expand your circle of care to common humanity.” 

After completion of the Teacher Certification program, George intends to continue to work with the Emory Compassion Center to bridge the CBCT® program into business. “Our initial research has shown that the infusion of compassion into business provides tremendous value to employees, customers, our communities, shareholders and extends to the preservation of the planet.” 


Françoise Gallet 

2022 cohort member 

Françoise Gallet (South Africa) with a background as a coach and facilitator in the field of human and organizational development shares her perspective. 

Given the times we live in, I can’t think of a more relevant and necessary training for compassionately shifting how we engage and relate to ourselves, others, and the systems we live in. Therefore, it is a huge privilege to be part of a growing global network of CBCT teachers seeding such skills in business, healthcare, schools and among individuals.” 

For anyone considering applying to be in the 2023 cohort, Françoise noted, “The course workload is very demanding on the working professional.  In South Africa, the Afrikaans term ‘vasbyt’ means ‘bite hard.’  In certain ways, it references the English idiom ‘put your head down.’  Except when you ‘vasbyt’ in South Africa, your eyes are wide open and you can fully taste your experience – your focus or ‘bite’ is strong, but you are not shutting out aspects of your experience.  Stepping fully into the rigor of the training and deeply grappling with it all has value.  My advice to future participants: sign up and ‘vasbyt.’” 


Raymond Walker, III 

2022 cohort member 

Raymond Walker, III, M.Div., BCC, CCSH-RC (Georgia, US) shares his perspective as a Chaplain. 

“After completing the program, I am most looking forward to witnessing the "Aha!" moments experienced by participants in a CBCT® course where I am their Certified Teacher!  Further, I would love to utilize what I have learned in the healthcare context with decision-makers and people in "upper-level" management.  I believe some compassion reflection might be of good use in that context. 

Lastly, “if you are considering applying to be in next year's cohort, you are halfway there.  Whatever is keeping you from traveling the other half, consider bringing it with you and sharing it with the facilitators and/or cohort - likely someone else has overcome or is in the process of overcoming it as well.” 


Novermber 4, 2022

Researchers to Test Compassion Meditation to Improve Health for Breast Cancer Survivors and Their Partners


The Breast Cancer Survivors and Partners Online Research Together (SUPORT) Project incorporates contemplative meditation exercises over Zoom designed to strengthen and sustain compassion, while increasing emotional awareness.

A team of researchers at the University of Arizona College of Nursing were recently awarded a grant from the National Cancer Institute to study the effectiveness of compassion meditation to reduce stress and anxiety for breast cancer survivors and their supportive partners.

Evidence suggests that breast cancer survivors often experience increased anxiety, stress, fatigue, and social isolation many years after the end of their cancer treatments. Family members who live with breast cancer survivors such as husbands, wives, significant others, partners, and adult children also experience similar quality of life changes. Unlike other meditation programs that focus solely on mindfulness, CBCT® (Cognitively-Based Compassion Training) is focused on how an individual interconnects with other people, building an ethos of compassion and well-being for you and for others.

“The idea for this project came from our earlier work with Cognitively-Based Compassion Training with breast cancer survivors several years ago,” said principal investigator Thaddeus Pace, PhD. “Folks on our team, including Dr. Terry Badger, have studied how supportive partners are very important for the well-being of cancer survivors, so we wanted to expand our use of Cognitively-Based Compassion Training for both survivors and partners together.”

While previous studies utilizing meditation have been done in-person, the pandemic inspired Dr. Pace and his colleagues at the University of Arizona to look at a new model utilizing video conferencing systems like Zoom to greatly expand access to CBCT.

“The pandemic has made everyone more comfortable with using systems like Zoom,” Dr. Pace said. “And we started to think it would be really interesting to create a program through Zoom. We conducted a pilot study with survivors and partners that worked relatively well, so now this project is a continuation of that on a larger scale, allowing survivors and supportive partners to participate coast to coast.”

“The pandemic posed the great challenge of learning how to successfully deliver compassion training online,” said Dr. Lobsang Tenzin Negi, Executive Director of the Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics at Emory University. “What started as a challenge quickly became a blessing. We have been able to share on a larger scale and offer to more people than ever before. Collaborating with the University of Arizona on this novel research project will allow us to combine new insights with previous studies and learn even more about how to benefit cancer survivors and the supportive partners.” 

Participants will be grouped in either online CBCT classes or online Cancer Health Education classes that will function very similarly to an online group Yoga or exercise classes. Survivors and their supportive partners can participate from anywhere so long as they have an internet connection, a computer or tablet with a twelve inch or larger screen and can commit to the weekly courses for the 10-week program.  

“There’s neuroscience research that shows that people who meditate over time can actually change their brains and the way their minds work,” said Dr. Pace. “CBCT in particular may be really ideal for improving survivors and supportive partners [in] distress because of the way it may change how their minds work, especially in challenging and stressful situation[s] that we all encounter in our social world.”

This research is supported by the National Cancer Institute, a division of the National Institutes of Health (R01 CA264047).

To learn more, go to nursing.arizona.edu/SUPORT. https://nursing.arizona.edu/SUPORT 


September 29, 2022

The Holy Cross Hospital in Maryland


 The Holy Cross Hospital in Maryland has witnessed immense suffering over the two years of the pandemic. Between March 2020 and February 2022, Holy Cross Health (Holy Cross Hospital, Holy Cross Germantown Hospital, and Holy Cross Health Network) cared for over 8,000 patients with a COVID–19 diagnosis and attended over 800 COVID–19 deaths. This speaks to the level of strength, resilience, and compassion of its staff and providers. 

Holy Cross Health was excellent at offering compassionate care to others, but what about the needs of their staff and the medical professionals serving those patients? To celebrate their dedication, Father Kirtley Yearwood commissioned two Broadway dancers to create a video to be shown throughout the Holy Cross Health system as a means of encouraging self-compassion and promoting well-being among the staff, providers, and contracted healthcare professionals. 

The team responsible for this video includes Kamille Upshaw, who was the Dance Captain for Broadway’s, “MJ The Musical” and a swing dancer in “Hamilton,” among other major productions. Chanel DaSilva is a choreographer for The Joffrey Ballet and a co-founder of MoveNYC. These two Julliard–trained professionals created and filmed “A Time of Stillness: A Dance of Compassion” on location at the Holy Cross hospitals. It is an interpretive dance that draws from the insights of CBCT® (Cognitively-Based Compassion Training) as a grace–filled offering of love that expresses and acknowledges key moments in caring for COVID–19 patients. 

Further, it is meant to support staff and providers to be open to practicing kindness and gentleness toward self. “A Time of Stillness: A Dance of Compassion” premiered at Holy Cross Health on Friday, March 4, 2022 on the second anniversary of Holy Cross diagnosing the first COVID–19 patient in the State of Maryland. The ceremony was officiated by His Eminence Wilton Cardinal Gregory, Archbishop of Washington. Watch the video of “A Time of Stillness: A Dance of Compassion” by clicking here.


August 30, 2022

Dr. Fernandez-Carriba is the creator of this first International Meeting for the CBCT® Community en español


Dr. Fernandez-Carriba is the creator of this first International Meeting for the CBCT® Community en español, co-sponsored by the Center for Contemplative Science and Contemplative-Based Ethics (CCSCBE). The developer of CBCT®, Lobsang Tenzin Negi, PhD, and Executive Director of the CCSCBE will be the event keynote speaker. With more than 20 years of experience serving professionals and families of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder and other disabilities, Dr. Fernandez-Carriba works internationally, primarily in the US, Spain, and Latin America. He obtained his PhD from Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain and completed his postdoctoral fellowship at Emory University. As a senior level CBCT® Instructor, he investigates and applies clinically the CBCT® core teachings of compassion training to families and providers consisting of strategies to foster resilience and social competence to populations under high stress. Dr. Fernandez-Carriba’s recent work has led to three peer-reviewed articles, including a study using a brief Mindfulness intervention during the COVID-19 lockdown and “Mindfulness y meditación contra el estrés causado por el autism” covered by CNN Español (in Spanish, https://cnn.it/2hIhKiG).

For more information about the International Meeting for the CBCT® Community en español or to register, click here.


July 27, 2022

Explore compassion and cultivate connection to bolster well-being


Join us for the CBCT® Foundation Course this fall. This course will be taught by the developer of CBCT, Professor Lobsang Tenzin Negi. The course will be offered over two weekends, Saturdays and Sundays, September 17 and 18 and October 8 and 9. You will have the option to attend in-person or online via Zoom. CBCT® is a research-based approach to fostering personal resilience and sustaining warm-hearted relationships.

For details, click here. Public CBCT® Courses and Continuing Education | CBCT® Compassion Training - Emory University


June 28, 2022

Can CBCT® Unlock Your Superpower? 


“Blaming someone else has always been one of my defense mechanisms and a way of avoiding taking responsibility for my life. I didn’t mess myself up, right? Why should I have to take responsibility for fixing myself?!  

Honestly, that is the way I thought for the greater part of fifty years – until I was introduced to Cognitive Based Compassion Training (CBCT) through Emory Healthcare in my first unit of Clinical Pastoral Education.  

In our class we first experienced compassion towards self by learning to recognize nurturing moments that take place throughout our day and feel the resulting kindness in ourselves. As we consciously drank that in more and more of this kindness and compassion, we were more easily able to pour it out to those we care for. 

This awareness opened a world that I didn’t trust existed, instead of being defensive I started to feel relaxed and happy. It also became easier for me to catch a negative thought or feeling and calm it or release it before acting on it. 

CBCT reminded me of the gap that exists between thought and action and that space is where our freedom lies. I had a tough day at the hospital and even though I gave up drinking, I was planning a drink on the way home, where I was going to stop, what it was going to taste like, and how relaxed and good I was going to feel afterwards. Then I remembered that this was just a feeling and I wondered what was behind it? I realized that I was frustrated because I felt like I had not accomplished anything that day. As soon as I put the realization and the feeling together, my “need” to drink disappeared.  

Another day I was at the dentist and feeling a bit stressed which was reflected when the hygienist took my blood pressure, and it was sky high. A week later, I returned to the dentist, and I remembered to take myself to a nurturing moment in my mind, which I did, and my blood pressure was 35 points lower than it was the prior week! 

The following day I was outside feeding the birds and admiring and feeling grateful for the beautiful day, really being present, and Spirit told me that I had found my Superpower through CBCT. It was a YES! Moment. I couldn’t wait to tell my husband. I have this superpower within myself, and it doesn’t matter what happens outside because I am the one deciding my response. It gives me a wonderful sense of agency, of overseeing my feelings and not being pushed around my circumstances. Most importantly, it aligns me with Spirit.  

Another aspect of the training is expanding our compassion to all beings by picturing them as able to become happy. The first time that I did the exercise, I pictured a man that used to work for me that I never did like very well. I was able to picture him happy but hadn’t thought about him again. Yesterday, Spirit set me up. I saw the man at the grocery store across from my office and actually hoped that he would stop in and see me. I would never have felt that tenderness towards him before doing the exercise!  

I never needed “fixing,” I just needed to experience love and compassion, and find it within myself. I am in control of my well-being and as a result, I am able to give from a glad heart. That’s my superpower and the realization of this gift makes me cry.” 

~ Katrina Andrews, who took an introduction to CBCT® as a chaplain intern at Emory. 


The Compassion Center is grateful to Ms. Andrews for taking the time to send this message and then giving permission to share it with others. 


May 23, 2022

Atlanta’s Resiliency Resource for Frontline Workers’ Program At-a-Glance


CBCT® is being offered to dozens of frontline healthcare workers as part a new Emory program funded by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration. The program, called Atlanta’s Resiliency Resource fOr Frontline Workers (ARROW), is designed to build resiliency and strengthen resolve among clinicians, police, and public safety officers. In partnership with Emory University School of Nursing, Grady Health System, and Emory University and Health System Police and Public Safety Departments, ARROW will offer comprehensive resources for resiliency enrichment, training, and professional development for both practicing and student nurses, physicians, and public safety personnel.

The aim is to increase the number of frontline workers trained and certified in CBCT® (Cognitively-Based Compassion Training) and in CRM® (Community Resiliency Model) to reduce, address, and prevent burnout, mental health conditions, substance use disorders, and suicide. ARROW targets workers across the 29-county Atlanta metropolitan statistical area.


April 23, 2022

Have you taken the CBCT® Foundation Course?


Are you interested in joining a community of practitioners skillfully sharing CBCT with others? The CBCT Teacher Certification Program application deadline has been extended to May 15. We are accepting a new cohort of experienced and eager practitioners. This high-quality training is designed for those wishing to share CBCT in their community or in research settings.

A series of retreats, workshops, and coaching sessions held over several months will provide a thorough understanding of the CBCT rationale and its core content, as well as the skills to expertly lead adult learning groups and guide meditations. This June, in collaboration with Tibethaus in Germany, we will have our first German-speaking group to begin the teacher training. Other past participants have come from diverse backgrounds and locations including the U.S., Brazil, Chile, France, Israel, Mexico, Peru, and Spain. Learn about the program and application here .



January 26, 2022

New Research on CBCT ® for HIV+ Patients


We spoke recently with Boghuma K. Titanji, MD, PhD and her research partners about their new study, “Cognitively-Based Compassion Training for HIV Immune Non-responders – An Attention-Placebo Randomized Controlled Trial,” published in JAIDS Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes: December 7, 2021.  Here is what they reported:

“Non-pharmacologic interventions can play an important role in reducing inflammation related to HIV-infection and should be studied.  Inflammation is responsible for all of the serious diseases that reduce quality of life and longevity.  In our study we demonstrated both the feasibility and potential benefit of cognitively based compassion training for people with HIV infection who have had difficulty in recovering their immune system after treatment. 

“We found a significant association between CBCT ® practice time engagement and a reduction in important markers of inflammation.  These changes were coincident with significant increases in self-reported psychological well-being and HIV disease acceptance and benefits for CBCT ® participants. 

“CBCT ® is a novel and feasible non-medication-based intervention that could reduce inflammation and psychological stress in people with HIV.  We hope to explore this approach in larger studies to benefit this patient population.”

Tim Harrison

Timothy Harrison, Associate Director for CBCT ®, was one of the contemplative investigators on the research team, alongside Compassion Center founder Dr. Lobsang Tenzin Negi.  As one of the CBCT ® teachers for the study, Timothy reflects:

“Teaching CBCT ® to men living with HIV was deeply meaningful – particularly at Atlanta’s clinic downtown where so many are living on the edges of our society.  Though they were naturally hesitant to engage compassion meditation at first, and perhaps only showed up for the free snacks and bus tokens, the men soon opened up and engaged whole-heartedly the course activities, meditations, and discussions.  After a few class meetings, they began to report noticing habits of rumination and a new ability to tame the inner voices that excessively belittle or blame themselves.  Later on, some were even able to let go of some heavy, unhelpful resentments.

“CBCT’s approach seemed to speak to each of participants individually, to meet them where they were.  Many found ways to work with their inner demons, to focus and to sleep better, and to accept and love themselves more fully.  Several reported, in the end, that they were finding more belonging and gratitude in their relationships, not only with loved ones at home but also with the clinic workers whom they depend upon for life-saving treatments.”


November 29, 2021


“What I appreciate most about CBCT ® is that it cultivates altruistic intentions through cognitive, affective, and motivational dimensions.  The program reminds us that we need to investigate how our belief shapes the way we feel and act.  Each individual module can be a lifetime practice; I have new insights about myself and others every time I attend a CBCT ® retreat.  I’m glad that I’ve adopted CBCT ® components for various teaching occasions, including the Women’s Employment and Essential Skills program this fall hosted by Opportunity Northeast in Spokane, Washington.”  

- Professor Gloria I-Ling Chien, Gonzaga University


Professor Chien’s first article, “Complementary Teaching Practices:  Ignatian Pedagogy and Buddhist-inspired Compassion Meditation,” in Teaching Theology & Religion 23, draws from her experience with teaching CBCT ® at a Jesuit University.  The research explores how CBCT ® aligns with the Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm’s five elements: context, experience, reflection, action, and evaluation.  Modern Ignatian pedagogy is a distinctive feature of Jesuit education. 

Her second article is “Integrating Contemplative and Ignatian Pedagogies in a Buddhist Studies Classroom” in Religions 11. This study shows that the combination of contemplative pedagogy and the Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm create a multidimensional environment in learning Buddhism in higher education.  Specific examples are given of multisensory contemplation activities – such as CBCT ® – that expand students’ ways of knowing about Buddhist practice and foster their consideration for others.

Dr. Chien’s students have shared with her how contemplative practice has helped them especially during the anxious time of the coronavirus pandemic.


October 29, 2021



From the CBCT ® course, Trina was inspired by the quote, “compassion is the bridge to connection.”  She said, the idea of compassion as a lens and tool to focus our attention and relational being toward interdependence, common humanity, and seeing the vulnerability of others is powerful!  “I believe the affective nature of compassion (connectedness) leads to greater understanding, acceptance, and love (of self and others). I was also pleased with the practical approaches (exercises) for meditation and self-reflection, particularly the strategies to “shift” negative thinking styles.”

Over the last 15 months, Trina has worked with a team to develop and implement Emory’s Building Resilience and Compassion Enculturation (emBRACE) Peer Support Program.  The emBRACE program is an interprofessional, systems approach to decreasing the lasting burdens of secondary trauma and moral distress experienced by Emory employees.  Trained peer support leaders from Emory Healthcare and Emory University include physicians, nurses, advanced practice providers, social workers, and chaplains.

It turns out that many of the concepts of the CBCT ® for Nurses and Other Providers’ course align with the mission, goals, and objectives of emBRACE.  The CBCT ® course and practices offer an opportunity for self-assessment and ongoing self-reflection, as well as personal and professional growth.  According to Trina, “these complementary tools (CBCT ® and emBRACE) strengthen our abilities, outreach, and impact potential for individual wellness, social community, and structural (organizational) change toward well-being and joy in work.”

Joining Emory Healthcare in December 2011, she started as a Nurse Clinician at Emory University Hospital, Unit 10E.   She served in various Manager for Nursing positions at Emory Johns Creek Hospital from 2013 to April 2020, leading key strategic initiatives for nursing excellence, including EJCH’s initial Magnet® designation.

Trina has been in nursing leadership since April 2020, and is responsible for leading the development, implementation, and measurement of innovative, evidence-based, and evidence-informed nurse leadership preparation and support, including but not limited to, nursing leadership education, training, mentoring, and coaching.

CBCT ® Compassion Training for Nurses and Other Providers is a multi-part course combining a weekend workshop online via Zoom on August 7-8.  CNE and CEU credits are available.  For details, click here.  CBCT® Courses for Nurses | CBCT® Compassion Training - Emory University


September 29, 2021

CBCT Book Cover


In the newly released Heroínas compasivas.  La vida como supervivientes de cáncer de mama [Compassionate Heroines:  Life as Breast Cancer Survivors], breast cancer survivors share their stories and how the practices of CBCT ® (Cognitively-Based Compassion Training) aided in re-learning to live after cancer.

Edited by Rebeca Diego Pedro, Edgar González Hernández, and Lobsang Tenzin Negi, the developer of CBCT and executive director of the Compassion Center, this Spanish-language book serves as a source of encouragement and hope, intended for cancer survivors and their caregivers, as well as clinicians, counselors, psychologists, and meditation practitioners

Dr. González-Hernández, an experienced CBCT instructor and professor of psychology at the Universidad de las Américas Puebla (UDLAP) in San Andrés Cholula, Mexico, was inspired to pursue this project based on his own experience teaching and researching CBCT with survivors of breast cancer in Spain.

The writing team included several long-time friends of the center, including CBCT teacher Sally Dodds and Thaddeus Pace who together pioneered research on CBCT with cancer survivors at the University of Arizona; senior CBCT instructor Samuel Fernandez-Carriba, a psychologist who leads the Spanish-language CBCT teacher certification program; and Timothy Harrison, associate director for CBCT at the Compassion Center.

 Heroínas compasivas.  La vida como supervivientes de cáncer de mama addresses the important question:  How do I embrace myself with kindness after my life has been changed by surviving cancer? 

Currently, only the Spanish edition is available. It may be purchased through online bookstores:  Casa del Libro, Desclée De Brouwer, Agapea, Emaús and Amazon.



“The meaning of this book was a constant learning process…an honorable opportunity to deepen into the content and skills proposed by CBCT – together is always better.”  Edgar González-Hernández, PhD


“The long-term implementation of compassion training can support a much-needed cultural shift signaling that compassion is an important value throughout our society.  If compassion is thoroughly integrated into education, healthcare, and other systems, it can positively impact the public domain in far-reaching and fundamental ways.”  Lobsang Tenzin Negi, PhD


July 29, 2021

  Snow        Forest

Jenna Olsen working in Petersburg Medical Center respiratory screening drive-thru tent – April 2020
Kayaking in Frederick Sound, Alaska with background view of Mitkof Island

Last August,  Jenna Olsen  completed the  CBCT ®  Compassion Training for Nurses and Other Providers’   course and was impressed with the training, exercises, and virtual meetings.  In addition, she appreciated the chance to interact with fellow nursing participants.  She reports, “The CBCT ®  training is applicable in our everyday lives, especially healthcare professionals.  Practicing CBCT ®  expands our empathy levels, recognizes suffering in others, builds greater compassion, develops more profound and meaningful connections with others, which brings up greater understanding and joy back into our lives.” 

At the time of the course, Jenna was managing the Joy Janssen Clinic at the critical access Petersburg Medical Center in Petersburg, Alaska.  Serving a population of approximately 3,000 residents, Petersburg is only accessible by air or water.  As the only hospital, the staff are called upon to serve many roles.  Jenna recalls that the pandemic triggered her stress response into overdrive.  She found herself spending countless hours researching and implementing procedures to protect the clinic staff and patients.    

“I was under such pressure that I was having difficulty calming my mind, and to the extent that I was having a hard time sleeping and coping.  As a result, I was searching for ways to relieve stress and came across a course offered through Emory University,  CBCT ®  Compassion Training for Nurses.   The course was usually only offered in person, but it was being offered online due to the pandemic, and I signed up without hesitation.”  

During the course, Jenna connected with others listening to their stories and struggles, while sharing her own experiences.  The module that most resonated with her was CBCT ® ’s  first module, Connecting to a Moment of Nurturance. “I shared this practice with our hospital staff at the end of a trauma debrief.  The CEO later thanked me for guiding the meditation, as he experienced a calmness and recognized that he wasn't aware of how stressed his body was feeling.”  

In November 2020, Jenna with the support of her husband decided it was time to begin a new direction.  She transitioned from her clinic management position and moved to Pennsylvania to be closer to family and to enroll in an RN-BSN program at Drexel University.  One of her summer courses is holistic self-care and she is acquiring new stress reduction techniques, as well as sharing with others the benefits of CBCT ® .  Jenna states, “I think we all would benefit from the CBCT ®  training.  I am very thankful that I was able to participate in the course and highly recommend it!”   

CBCT ®  Compassion Training for Nurses and Other Providers  is a multi-part course combining a weekend workshop online via Zoom on August 7-8.  CNE and CEU credits are available.  For details, click here.   CBCT® Courses for Nurses | CBCT® Compassion Training - Emory University  


July 20, 2021





March 29, 2021

  CBCT-Flavia.png CBCT-Teaching-Baby-Massage.png

CBCT ® certified teacher, nurse, and researcher, Flávia Kolchraiber, began working with IBEAC (Brazilian Institute of Community Studies and Support) fifteen years ago.  The Mobilizing Mothers - Excellence in Care Project began in 2017, by the Center for Excellence in Early Childhood through IBEAC.  Today, the Mobilizing Mothers are recognized as leaders in their communities.  They visit the homes of pregnant women and mothers with babies to educate about self-care before, during, and after birth.  There are discussions on healthy eating habits, violence prevention, and childhood care, including for babies with disabilities.  Many of the Mobilizing Mothers live in the communities they support.  The team seeks to create new perspectives and conditions for families and subsequently, to strengthen neighborhoods.  Through various programs, including Mobilizing Mothers, the Center for Excellence in Early Childhood is serving 1,500 families.

For more information about the Influencer Mothers - Excellence in Care Project, visit the Center for Excellence in Early Childhood Facebook page here . 

To see at-a-glance snapshot of the services provided in the Parelheiros region during 2020, by IBEAC and partners, click here.

Compassion Corps sm is Compassion Institute’s program to serve especially vulnerable populations by providing limited funding to certified compassion training teachers motivated to help communities where human suffering is immediate and obvious.

The CBCT ® Teacher Certification Program is currently accepting applications for a new cohort of experienced practitioners.  The program is primarily online and has been attended by individuals from across the US, Brazil, Chile, France, Germany, Israel, Mexico, Peru, and Spain.  Access the Overview PDF file here.


December 18, 2020

Each year, the Center accepts a new cohort of experienced practitioners to enroll in the six-month CBCT ® Teacher Certification program, which is designed to provide high quality teaching of CBCT ® for research purposes, as well as general sharing of the CBCT ® skills and content with a wider audience.  The program is designed to accommodate those outside Atlanta and has been attended by people from across the US, Brazil, Chile, France, Germany, Israel, Mexico, Peru, and Spain.  For full details about the program, access the Overview PDF file here:   2021 Teacher Certification Information.  Applications are now being accepted for the 2021 cohort.


December 1, 2020

How do we know compassion when we see it?  In October 2020, Frontiers in Psychology published a paper, “Ways of Knowing Compassion:  How Do We Come to Know, Understand, and Measure Compassion When We See It?”   Authored by a consortium of scientists from different fields and universities, this interdisciplinary review explores the strengths and limitations of different approaches for studying compassion, and offers promising strategies for moving the burgeoning field forward.

Notably, the majority of the paper’s authors have come to the field of compassion research through their earlier research on CBCT ®.  Medical anthropologist Jennifer Mascaro, PhD, and psychiatrist Charles Raison, MD, are well known as pioneers of the earliest CBCT ® studies on stress physiology and empathic accuracy.  Religion scholar Marianne Parrish Florian, M.A., M.T.S., herself a certified CBCT ® teacher, and Patricia “Kim” Palmer, Manager of Research Projects in Spiritual Health, Woodruff Health Sciences Center, Emory University, each have contributed to seminal research on Compassion-Centered Spiritual Health, a program based on CBCT ® and chaplaincy practice at Emory Healthcare in recent years.

“Ways of Knowing Compassion:  How Do We Come to Know, Understand, and Measure Compassion When We See It?” is a theoretical review of how we know and understand compassion, building on the authors’ observation that compassion can be characterized by three basic criteria:  “awareness of another’s suffering, a benevolent emotional or affective response, and the motivation to help or act.”  The paper aims to promote communication, collaboration, and convergence across disciplines.  The authors have sought to identify complements across different research methodologies in order to promote method-mixing and ultimately strengthen the evidence and rigor of research on compassion.


October 27, 2020


Based at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, Corina Aguilar-Raab, PhD ,  is a clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, and professor at the Institute of Medical Psychology. Certified to teach CBCT ® since 2016, Dr. Aguilar-Raab teaches and researches in the fields of clinical psychology and psychotherapy, emphasizing how positive social interactions in close relationships can be improved. She has just completed a book on how systemic aspects of therapy can be combined with Buddhist philosophy and practice.  Secular approaches, especially CBCT ®, are highlighted in Systemische Praxis und Buddhismus:  Ein Wegweiser für achtsame Therapie und Beratung (Systemic Practice and Buddhism: A Guide to Mindful Therapy and Counseling) to be published in December.

During the summer of 2019, Dr. Aguilar-Raab led a large CBCT ® study at Institute of Medical Psychology, Heidelberg University.  The focus was on depressed women and their partners.  In a randomized control study design of fifty couples, half received CBCT ® for couples and the other half treatment as usual.  Following a psychobiological evaluation approach, first data analyses indicated the overall positive effects with the reduction of distress and symptom burdens.

In the upcoming year, Dr. Aguilar-Raab will integrate CBCT ® into the teaching of psychology students at Heidelberg University, and she is planning a CBCT ® course for early 2021 at Tibethaus in Frankfurt.  Dr. Aguilar-Raab is in the process of recruiting German-speaking candidates who will become certified to teach CBCT ® to support the expansion of the program within the German-speaking world.


Based in Brasília, Brazil, Bruno Vichi holds graduate degrees in both law and psychoanalysis and for 20 years has worked as a lawyer, mediator, and therapist. 

Certified to teach CBCT since 2017, Vichi continues to offer courses throughout Brazil to doctors, teachers, educators, and the public.  In 2021, he will be support a pilot project combining CBCT ® and SEE Learning™ in the curriculum at Centro de Ensino Fundamental 01 (CEF01), a public school for ages 6 to 15, located in the Federal District.

Mr. Vichi recently led a tailored 8-week CBCT ® course for a group of Brazilian women activists.  Participants ranged from a host of organizations, including UN Women – the United Nations entity dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women.  The idea was to create a safe and nurturing space for women working within areas of human rights, indigenous communities, food security, and environmental issues.  The activists were seeking to develop personal resources, resiliency skills, and a more compassionate approach after the 2018 Brazilian presidential election. According to Erika Yamada of the United Nations Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples:

“ It was important to gather this group of friends and activists around a practice of meditation at that moment where everybody was feeling very hopeless and scared.  CBCT ® offered us important inner tools to deal with our political context, which got even more challenging the following months. With those tools, we found motivation to self-organize compassionate meetings to meditate together. We have continued to use the CBCT ® vocabulary and practice to take care of ourselves and of each other.

Help us to continue spreading compassion. The Seeds of Compassion scholarship fund was set up in 2013 to help the financial needs of those seeking certification. To donate, click here

The CBCT ® Teacher Certification program will be accepting applications for the 2021 cohort soon. 


May 12, 2020

CBCT® Supports Healthcare Workers

Since 2014 CBCT® has been taught to faculty, staff, and students at the Emory School of Medicine.  In light of COVID-19 and sudden postponement of clinical training, the school’s leadership requested a special online training. Twice weekly, these future healthcare heroes are meeting virtually to develop the inner skills to support their resilience and compassion.


CBCT® to Support Illinois Physicians State-Wide

In 2021, the University of Illinois will provide CBCT® as part of a groundbreaking wellness curriculum for its first-year medical students across the state.  In addition to the five Emory-Certified CBCT Instructors in Peoria, the Center is now training eight faculty and staff to support the expansion to the Rockford and Chicago campuses


Co mpassion-Centered Spiritual Health in 12 Hospitals

CBCT’s partnership with Spiritual Health at Emory Healthcare continues to expand to provide meaningful training and tools for chaplains and their patients.  Visit the Compassion-Centered Spiritual Health website to learn more about this research-based approach to hospital chaplaincy and the new two-year CCSH Fellowship available to select spiritual health clinicians.

Join Us for Daily Compassion Practice and Fellowship!

Since we began offering this service in March, hundreds have attended these sessions led by CBCT® teachers, meeting twice daily at 9:00am and 7:00pm EST.  Free and open to all.  Details here.   Spanish-speaking Online Sessions are also available, organized by CBCT® Senior Teacher Samuel Fernandez-Carriba.  Details here.


Learn more about CBCT

Zipporah Slaughter

Program Coordinator

Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics

Emory University

Office:  404.727.8166

Email:   zipporah.slaughter@emory.edu

Get Involved/Contact

The CBCT® program includes a growing number of certified instructors and is regularly expanding its programming and research areas. We welcome offers of support and ideas for new applications or populations who may benefit from learning the core CBCT® concepts and skills. Please contact the CBCT team for all inquiries, cbct@emory.edu or call 404.727.8166.