Dopamine & Being Seen

The Neurobiology of Vitality & Recognition Processes:

A Framework for Working with Dissociation in AEDP

an AEDP New England Seminar
at the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum in Lexington, MA
with Diana Fosha, PhD


This course will be available for Live Streaming (First 2-hours ONLY) and the Entire Course will be available via Home Study at a later date.

In working with trauma, the calm-inducing, nervous-system-soothing effects of oxytocin cannot be overestimated. We do not learn and explore and dare to take risks when our nervous systems are in a state of fearful physiological reactivity. Oxytocin is a powerful antagonist of fear. The nervous system calms and the social engagement system comes online. However, dissociation and the de-activation of the autonomic nervous system, and resulting experiences of numbness, deadness and futility constitute a different set of the tragic sequelae of trauma, require something more. In treating dissociation, safety and calm as goals of trauma processing are essential, but not a guarantee that feelings of aliveness will suffuse the experience of the self. That’s the realm of dopamine mediated processes, and feeling the motivation to live life with zest and meaning.

AEDP is well suited to bring both oxytocin-mediated AND dopamine mediated experiences online in safe and regulated fashion. With its orientation toward the co-construction of safety and techniques for the rapid achievement of earned security, AEDP has a systematic methodology for bringing oxytocin online for both patient and therapist. However, AEDP is also distinguished for its metatherapeutic techniques with transformational experience that systematically and reliably give rise to the transformational affects. Feelings of exuberance and curiosity and the motivation to act on behalf of the self reflect the world of dopamine mediated experiences and their power to lead to new learning, greater memory reconsolidation, as well as to the vitally important felt sense of aliveness, for vitality and energy are so needed to counter the deadening numbing effects of dissocation.

This workshop will explore the neurobiology of vitality, i.e., recent advances in the understanding of the neurobiological core self (Damasio, Panksepp), intimately linked with dopaminergic pathways. Making extensive use of clinical videotapes, we will delve into AEDP work, with a focus on the co-creation of relational safety and work with recognition processes. These constitute powerful elements for a neurobiologically based psychotherapeutic process with dissociative phenomena, one that, in the course of co-creating safety and trauma processing, also seeks to bring vitality and energy into the previously depleted system. Clinical work will show how recognition processes can be used to bypass the fragmentation of self experience: by making the most of experiences marked by “the click of recognition” patients who usually rely on dissociative mechanisms are able to have a new “whole self” experience, felt sense of it and all.

You’ll Learn To:

  • Summarize the therapeutic relevance of a core knowledge of of the neurobiology of vitality and of the core self.
  • Utilize three skills in developing a co-created environment of safety.
  • Identify experiences that are characterized by the click of recognition, and develop three skills for metatherapeutic processing of such experience.
  • Identify key aspects of dissociative experiences that reveal opportunities for their transformation, by focusing on glimmers marked by positive affect.

Meet the Presenter

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Fees, Credits and Registration:

  • $150
  • $175 Walk-In Registration

Event Registration

Live Streaming will be available (First 2-hours ONLY) and a Home Study of the Entire Course will be available at a later date.

LIVE STREAMING price and registration is NOT for the whole workshop, but ONLY for the Didactic portion, which will take place from APPROX  9am-11am EST.

Live Streaming Cost: $39 for the 2 hours (2 CE) of Didactic

Live Streaming Registration

Webinar Cost: $139 for the 6 hours (6 CE) of the recorded event
Registration Coming Soon



This program is eligible for 6 CE Hours of continuing education credit through our co-sponsor R. Cassidy Seminars. To view the CE accreditation statement click here.  CE Credits are included in the course fee. For our cancellation/refund policy click here.

Questions about this Workshop?

Contact Us

Event Details:


9:00 am - 5:00 pm


The Scottish Rite Masonic Museum and Library
33 Marrett Rd
Lexington, MA

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