2004 Meaning Conference, July 22-25, Vancouver, BC  

The 2004 Meaning Conference, on Transforming Loss, Suffering & Death,
through Meaning, Hope and Faith, was held in Vancouver BC. Following on the success of the 2002 Meaning Conference, it boasted many important and notable speakers, including:
Therese Rando, Ph.D., Dan P. McAdams, Ph.D., Alfried Längle, M.D., Ph.D., Ernesto Spinelli, Ph.D., Dmitry Leontiev, Ph.D., Salvatore Maddi, Ph.D., Alex Pattakos, Ph.D., Kirk Schneider, Ph.D., Richard Tedeschi, Ph.D., Rev. Koken Otani, and Professor Chi Chieh-Fang.

The event featured many presentations and discussions, including a symposium sponsored by the John templeton Fund, titled "The Gifts of Suffering: Spiritual Transformation, Science & Medicine". With a keynote by Harold Koenig, and presentations by George Ellis, Warren Brown, Malcolm Jeeves, and Mark Tyndall.

To see photos from the event, click here

Here are some comments from those attending the 2004 conference:

From Marie Amos

Thank you for all your hard work to put on the meaning conference, it was a fabulous, growingexperience that I will be thinking about for a long time!

From Shelley Fahlman

Dr. Wong,
This is Shelley Fahlman from York University - I finally got to meet you in person at the meaning conference last weekend! I wanted to write to tell you that I really enjoyed the conference, and that I especially enjoyed your presidential address. I fully support your call for a more integrated approach to psychology. I noticed that you mentioned the work of Ken Wilber - I have a strong interest in his integral model and I'm always glad to hear more academics mentioning his work.

From Melissa Schmalz

We have just completed the Meaning Conference and I wanted to share with all of you some of my experience there. I also invite EVERYONE to share their reflections (with one another in person or email). Because it is the summertime, we will all be scattering for rejuvenation throughout the month of August, but I hope that we can all take a moment to reflect on the success of the conference, insights we gained, and experiences of excitement, joy, and contemplation that were heartfelt during the weekend.

My experience of the conference was, as you may have guessed by now, exceptianal and mind-altering in many ways. Many of the sessions moved me in a deeply emotional way, and a great deal of the imparted knowledge has carried with it a compelling force that demands the knowledge be reflected on and shared. My favorite part of the conference was the brief moments with people when we reflected on what we heard together in a session or when we stated, "so where were you the last hour? How was that session?"

There were many valuable presentations going on simultaneously, and sometimes a forced-choice was difficult and a little painful.

There was a murmur of gratitude for the Wongs that was carried around by many of the speakers, volunteers, and others who have known them for years. There were also moments of giddiness and silliness by the volunteers, faculty, and of course Paul Wong - we could blame it on the lack of sleep or take responsibility for those moments when we enjoy letting go, cracking up, and having a good time!


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