Transpersonal psychology is viewed within the graduate art therapy program as an evolving, researched discipline that integrates established models of psychology with valuable subjects from spiritual disciplines and wisdom traditions. This transdisciplinary assimilation, which strives to prevent cultural appropriation, results in a comprehensive model of psychology.
Transpersonal Art Therapy draws on this wide ranging premise through its core value to embrace the imaginal elements of the creative process as a rich healing opportunity. Any artistic act is a sample of multiple behaviors (cognitive, affective, kinesthetic, contemplative and spiritual), leading to the awareness that to form materials and processes is to transform oneself through art—we can literally create our way out of and through our suffering. The living image that results from the art process is the true teacher of this path. An art therapist working within the transpersonal approach strives to remain open to differences and to work for change at personal, cultural, institutional, and spiritual levels of transformation. Overall, this work is offered with empathic intentions, compassion for self and other, and the desire to transformatively serve communities and larger social systems.
As a graduate student in Naropa University’s Transpersonal Art Therapy program—a concentration offered as part of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling master’s degree—you will have the opportunity to explore the role of art and creativity in your own life—and how to skillfully use art in the therapeutic relationship.
Naropa University’s Art Therapy program is unique in that you will combine transpersonal psychology with contemplative studies, clinical field work, and civic engagement. The goal is to become a skilled, self-aware, and socially engaged counselor, artist, and art therapist.
Graduates from Naropa’s Transpersonal Art Therapy program have gone on to become art therapists, counselors in private practice, addiction counselors, school counselors, grief counselors, and more.
Naropa Community Art Studio
Complete a practicum during the first year in Naropa’s Community Art Studio where you will learn how to design, create, and finance a studio space to serve diverse groups of people desiring the opportunity to create art in community.
Naropa Community Counseling Center
Work as an art therapy intern during your third year of graduate study. One of many possible sites is the Naropa Community Counseling Center. Offering contemplative and mindfulness healing services, the center makes provides leading-edge psychotherapy to low- and middle-income community members on a sliding fee basis.
Approved by the American Art Therapy Association, the Transpersonal Art Therapy concentration, offered as part of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling master’s degree, is a 62-credit-hour, three-year program that provides theoretical grounding in transpersonal psychology, contemplative studies, and art therapy along with rigorous clinical training.
American Art Therapy Association–approved program. Naropa University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.