This edited volume in honour of Dr Pittu Laungani brings together renowned names in the field of psychology, who critique Dr Laungani's contribution from various angles.
Through a critical examination of the life and work of Pittu Laungani, one of the leading psychologists in the West, this book explores the nature of cross-cultural psychology, counselling and psychotherapy. It specifically attempts to build bridges between Indian philosophy and the approaches and methods of Western psychology and counselling. Drawing on the works of Pittu Laungani, the various chapters in the book deal with interesting and challenging questions on culture and stress, traditional healing, Hindu spirituality and religion, caste, class and culture and its relationship with the theory and practice of modern counselling psychology.
Much of Laungani's work has been cutting edge in psychology; developing ideas that transcend the boundaries and limitations of both eastern philosophy and western psychologY. A number of international researchers and scholars have brought together specific aspects of South Asian psychology and Laungani's theories and the current thinking in Western counselling and psychotherapy, interweaving them into new ways of practice in the field of health and mental health. This book includes many original articles of Pittu Laungani and commentaries of scholars and academics working in various fields of psychology, counseling and the health care profession in general.
Personal tributes to Pittu Laungani by the likes of Stephen Palmer, Richard Dezoysa and Nicolo Pipitone add another dimension to this otherwise scholarly book.
The first time I heard of Pittu Laungani was in 1992 when he became a contributing author to a special issue of Counselling Psychology Quarterly named Transcultural Psychology: Theory, Research and Practice, which was guest edited by Vaman Lokare, a British clinical psychologist originally from India. I remember scanning his paper and musing that it was interesting but I confess he did not grab my attention until more recently. For some reason, I cannot place my first acquaintance with Pittu but recall a handwritten letter I received from him, and we made subsequent telephone contact. He asked me in Hindi if I spoke Hindi (that much I understood!) and I said that I understood only a few words but sadly could not ...