Results of Body-Emotional Mindfulness Project in Afghanistan at Herat University


Body-Emotional Mindfulness
Body-Emotional Mindfulness

Guna spa  and ACCESSO ngo this year support the second mission of the Body-Emotional Mindfulness(after BEM) dedicated to two courses and a temporary counseling center at the University Of Herat, Afghanistan.

We have supported the research project BEM made by Alberto Pennella who has been invited to teach in the Department of Psychology at Herat University with the help of all Psychology department, Director Prof Karimi, Prof. Basir Ahman Azizi and Hajar Rafiee.

Its aim was to provide an integrated approach with two seminars, one that combines Philosophy, Body Psychotherapy and Neuroscience (BEM), another of Clinical Psychology which included Neuro-Affective therapy and a Counseling Center opened inside the institution which allowed the 112 participating students and professionals, especially from psychology and medicine, to investigate and solve psychological problems, both individually and through the operas of small groups of psychotherapy.

As we all know, in Afghanistan there have been thirty years of war and the population that experienced a lot of trauma.

We wanted to evaluate the efficiency of this intervention and so it was expected to test it with a well-known international clinical psychology test, the “Beck Test” and some of the students of the two classes have taken the test before and after the 8-week seminars.

The test has been used to invite the students with greater psychological difficulties within the Counseling Center and working on alleviating their suffering experience.

This approach had an unexpected success because there was a 43% decrease in depression and anxiety, so we were able to considerably improve their mental state.

Details of the results found:

54% Decrease in feelings of worthlessness

78% Decrease of tiredness or fatigue

63% Decrease of punishments feelings

66% Decrease of self-dislike

40% Reduction of suicidal thoughts or wishes

60% Increase of awareness

51% Increase of pleasure

40% Increase in determination

General Result:



In the seminars, in addition to the topics listed below, has been using a mixture of strategy taken from psychotherapy, Mindfulness Therapy, Mentalization based therapy, bioenergetics, psychotherapy games adapted for Islamic Countries, development of trust, empowerment, based Cognitive Therapy for transforming emotion, capacity building relations and other ways to increase emotional regulation and considerably reducing stress.

The conference that has been made at Herat University at the end of the program has been attended by over 250 people including

Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Teachers, Students, a TV and a Radio, International NGOs who have been exposed positively on the effectiveness and they invited us to consider the possibility of continuing the work on a large scale.

To present to public  at Herat University who followed the courses and which presented the results of this work, was attended by over to television and radio, 250 people including: Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Teachers, Students, and international NGOs that have been positively impressed by the results.

The two seminars have dealt with the following topics:

Body-Emotional Mindfulness:

Mindfulness and Mental Processes

Mentalization based therapy

Emotion Dynamics and Somatic Experience

Self-Esteem and Self-Confidence

Happiness and Joy, Differences and Modality

Transforming Anger into Compassion

Transforming Sadness in Joy

Introjection and Projection

Individual and Social Responsibility

The Good, the Bad and Beyond.

Transforming Loneliness in Gratitude


Self-Confession, sharing intimacy and get rid on the closed circle.

Love and the Illusion of Love

Kairos and Kronos, Social Time and Emotional Time

Clinical Psychology:

Mindfulness and mental processes

Mentalization based therapy

First part-Neuroscience and Brain Dynamics (From Neuro-Affective Therapy  of Marianne Bentzen and Susan Hart)

The Compass of the autonomic nervous system and imbalances

The compass of the limbic system and imbalances

The compass of the neo cortex and imbalances

Part II-

Character Analysis

Comparison of different system of Body psychotherapy

( Neuro-affective Therapy of Marianne Bentzen and Susan Hart)

Child development and imbalances

Comparison between the analysis of the character of the Hakomi psychotherapy, Analysis of Bioenergetics, Institute Bodynamic, Freud and Erikson

Understanding of the imbalances with somatic approach

Group Analysis

In the Afghan context where the educational program is purely theoretical, has been  offered to in Psychological Department  a practical alternative strategy to manage adverse events, thereby reducing the tendency to trigger dysfunctional mechanisms that maintain or exacerbate psychopathological phenomenal. In addition, this intervention showed practical tools to treat patients in a practical and effective way.

Allowing others to feel better and happier, it’s the best thing we could experience.

It’s a real satisfaction.

Thank you!

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Un commento

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