|Dr. John Christopher is a professor of counseling in the Department of Health and Human Development at Montana State University (MSU) and a senior staff psychologist at MSU’s Counseling Center. He is also an affiliate professor at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine. He is a fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA) and the recipient of the 2003 Sigmund Koch Early Career Award by the APA’s Society of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology. Dr. Christopher specializes in cultural psychology, health psychology, and theoretical and philosophical psychology. He is currently the past-president of the Society of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology (Division 24 of the APA). The author of over 50 articles and chapters, he has written on the cultural, moral, and ontological underpinnings of theories of psychological well-being, moral development, and psychotherapy. Dr. Christopher has also pioneered the application of mindfulness to counselor training. He serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Humanistic Psychology and the Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology.
The objective of Dr. Christopher’s Fulbright research project, “Reversing the Tide of Globalization in Psychology: How Indian Indigenous Psychology is Influencing Western Psychology,” is facilitating the internationalization of psychology by promoting a critical examination of cultural transfer. In the past ten years, mindfulness has become one of the most popular modalities in psychotherapy and behavioral medicine in the U.S. Given the growth of mindfulness-based interventions, it is urgent to ascertain more clearly what exactly is being appropriated and transformed in these American applications of Indian spiritual practices. This also provides a focus for dialogue with Indian psychology faculty and students around ways culture shapes psychology and more specifically about the value of a hermeneutic theoretical framework for thinking critically about cultural influences.