#131 – Confronting Death


Steven Shaps, M.A., MFT, is a Marriage and Family Therapist who practices body-mind psychotherapy in Portland, Oregon. He specializes in the practice of Somatic Psychotherapy and Anger & Stress Management. He works with individuals, couples, families, and groups in his private practice and leads workshops and seminars in Anger & Stress Management, in addition to mindfulness meditation & somatic sensing. He also leads workshops and provides coaching in executive and staff management. He is a Marriage and Family Therapist, and according to his website he has certifications in Anger Management, Eye Movement Desensitization, and Reprocessing (also known as EMDR), clinical Hypnotherapy, Marital & Couples Therapy, and Codependency. He has extensive training in Ericksonian-Mind/body healing therapies, meditation, Somatics, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Movement, Breath, Buddhist meditation and Yoga. Of late, he has added to his roster of activities workshops and classes on death and dying. Beyond all this, he has also been a student of Native American healing traditions.

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A psychology podcast by David Van Nuys, Ph.D.



  1. Posted January 8, 2008 at 12:58 am | Permalink

    Kudos for Dr. Dave. Steven Shaps is an interesting speaker, but it must be really hard to interview him. You did a wonderful job.

  2. Chance
    Posted January 10, 2008 at 12:03 am | Permalink

    I really enjoyed this podcast, the subject matter is not discussed very often and I enjoyed hearing a different perspective than my own. my friends won’t even talk about death and issues surrounding it. thanks again

  3. Posted January 10, 2008 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for bringing up this topic. Its one that I enjoy thoroughly.

    I was wondering do you have any plans to interview Dr. Rick Strassman on this topic?

    In regards to your reference to Don Juan and Castenada. The teachings were in regards to use Death as your advisor. I would say that this is probably the main thing from Castenada’s books I was able to put to good use in my daily life. How I’ve applied it is that I’m learning to consider and prepare myself as best as I can for any ending of anything in my own life at any moment.

    Thanks again,


  4. Posted January 10, 2008 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Hi Louis,

    Thanks for the comment you posted. I assume Rick Strassman is the psychedelic researcher? Good suggestion! And thanks for being a listener and taking time to comment!


  5. Rafal
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    Great topic Dave, very interesting to me. I loved your questions, funny as it may sound I was also trying to answer some of them myself and for myself. I would love to have you interview or maybe have a discussion with some real exponent of the tibetan Buddhism. There is tremendous healing potential of their approach. I would like to listen to the psychological opinion/speculation on thi. Even though many specialist hold back from commenting on the “religious” or semi-“religious” subjects, maybe dr.Dave could pick up the challenge.
    It would be excellent continuation for the subject

    PS. Excellent interview skills (I second here Anna), I wish I were able to pick up a bit of this

  6. Rafal
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    Hi dr.Dave,
    thanks for touching this subject. It is one if not the most universal topics and sure thing great it pops up in the SRR. You mentioned a lot of great theories and books, one of which is the most interesting to me, Tibetan Book of Dead. It would be fantastic continuation to have a special episode focusing on this approach as well as its psychological interpretation.. This is a tricky thing and I am afraid many of the recognized authorities would refrain from touching the subject, but I trust dr.Dave could take the challenge.
    PS> I very much second the comment from “The man called Anne”, excellent interviewing skills 🙂 I wish I learned some of this “patient” approach

  7. Randy Clere, Lic Ac
    Posted January 18, 2008 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    As always, you do incredibly insightful interviews with thought provoking questions and deep a deep respect to the person being interviewed…. Bravo

  8. Posted January 23, 2008 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Dr. Dave. I enjoyed your interview with Steven Shaps. You are very professional in your presentation and interview.

    I have discovered the truth of what Steven was talking about. I am including some references to teachers that have books you may enjoy and also pod casts of their teachings.

    They are: Adyashanti, Gangaji and Eli Jackson-Bear all americans that teach about non-duality. Also I would recomend Echart Tolle as well. He is a german that was educated at I believe Cambridge in UK. He is brilliant in his book “The Power of Now”. Hope you will enjoy and reinforce your understanding of some of the things that Steven was talking about.

    With great admiration and respect,

    Barton J. Sagar

  9. Nathan
    Posted March 12, 2008 at 6:22 am | Permalink

    Dr. Dave. Love your show. I’ve listened to about 7-8 shows with great interest.

    But I couldn’t manage to get through this one though as I got sick of listening to Mr. Shaps carefully enunciate each word like he was trying to hypnotize the listener.

    Just be real is what I would say to Mr. Shaps. For some people that’s not possible.

  10. ZAC
    Posted November 21, 2010 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    I am now a dying man and I don’t care about. , But when God come for me I will face death cursing him forever. The actual God is misery. I curse you…Oh god! Since you are a sick joke of particular viciousness…one that should be banished from influence over the mind of men! I wanted inmortality for humanity and you refused . You are giving me sickness and death. Don’t make a mistake….oh God, since I am a dying man my soul is for Lucifer to take and not for you.

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