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Regis University
counseling and psychotherapy, eco-psychology


Steve Bennett is a Professor in the Masters of Arts in Counseling Program at Regis University in Denver, Colorado. He teaches courses in Counseling Techniques, Post-Modern Therapies, Community Counseling, and Phenomenological Research Methods. Although counseling and psychotherapy have not historically focused upon the relationship between individuals and their natural and cultural environments, Steve is particularly interested in recognizing and developing therapeutic conversations which acknowledge the necessity of one's experience of and concern for nature and community as contexts for psychological depth. He has been instrumental in developing a course in eco-psychology. This course asks the question, "How is it that the voice and force of nature can make its presence known in therapeutic conversations that not only foster an individual awareness of our contemporary predicament, but also promote community dialogue and action?" Growing up in the rural town of Springfield in the Ozark hills of Missouri was marked by the omnipresent ways in which the natural world "touched" one's daily life. Whether choked by the dog days of summer, embraced by the mists hovering in the valleys or inflamed by the crimson turning of maple trees in autumn, as a young child there was little doubt that one was in the grip of some force that twisted the very veins of the heart into their responsive shape. But this was also a town becoming a city, and as a young adolescent, this "touch" curiously became more and more remote, giving away to the stimulation of electricity, the speed of automobiles, the other worldliness of much religion and the determination of book-driven education. Now, on the verge of such collective environmental amnesia, it seems that it is the vague memories of that elemental touch that give one hope.