Dennis Alne Ph.D.: a Psychologist working with individuals with disabilities

Dennis AlneDennis Alne Ph.D. points out that time has a habit of bringing us unexpected changes. At age 60 Dennis Alne Ph.D. suffered a mild stroke. This was the scariest day of his life. Fortunately my wife was at home, and two of his children as well. Both were EMTs on the town first aid squad.  He was rushed to the hospital. They were alerted and ready for me. That night he started speaking again, and the next day he was able to walk short distances. There were cognitive and physical deficits directly following the stroke, but not severe ones. As a psychologist he was aware that studying a new subject would create new neural nets and could help compensate for any deficits. he developed a treatment plan.
A subject he had never studied before – physics – became a passion for him. He read everything his could get my hands on. He started in the thirteenth century and worked myself up the very latest theoretical research. What he found literally boggled my mind and changed my life. When the atom was broken Pandora’s box was opened. The particles that make up the atom are simply energy, and they obey none of the laws of physics that we were so sure of. Imagine particles being in multiple places at the same time; being able, somehow, to communicate with each other across huge distances; acting like a wave when not being observed, and a point particle when being observed. Besides this the universe itself appears to be made up of multiple interacting fields of energy.
He was back to my practice in short time and now was a changed person. There was no question in my mind that there is a higher power. While my formal training is as a cognitive behavioral psychotherapist he was always eclectic. Now He took the concept of mind-body-spiritual psychotherapy to heart. He often would incorporate a psycho-educational approach to open the eyes of patients to the importance of spirituality in one’s healing. He left articles in my waiting room showing the power of prayer. He showed pessimistic individuals research revealing that optimism has a positive effect on cellular functioning. He incorporated guided meditation into sessions. The end result of my transformation was that he saw positive changes in patients, and they reported it too.
His professional school training ignored spirituality and he is pretty sure that others have had the same experience. Therefore he sees the role of ASP to be one of educating professionals as to the importance of incorporating spirituality into their treatment of patients, and also into their own lives.

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