My work lies in the domains of research, therapy, teaching, Hindustani classical music and writing. I have written about myself extensively in research and I prefer to let my writing do the talk. Apart from that and extending research into services the other sides of me come together in my entrepreneurial venture Hansadhwani- mind. mood. music. All that you see on this website are different sides of Hansadhwani. It is here where they come together in a coherent manner and one can read how they interrelate.
Hansadhwani means the ‘sound of the swan’ as also the name of a pentatonic raga that came into Hindustani music from the Carnatic tradition of Indian classical music. I am first and foremost a classical music seeker, who from my classical music training, has imbibed the discipline to endeavour creating a life in harmony with Mother Earth and all aspects of creation. It is this harmony and earthiness I strive to extend into my work, relationships and professional practice of various contours.
Being a researcher moored in ethics and philosophy there is little I do which without a philosophical underpinning. While I may not write about it in research, the overall philosophy of my life is to work towards all I can towards my emancipation from laziness, ignorance, stupidity and prejudice in diverse aspects of living and to offer the best of my mind, knowledge, ideas, efforts, encouragement and support to everyone I engage with.
I look forward to engaging with you and support with creating positive outcomes in whatever you do. If you are someone given a mental ‘illness’ diagnosis and would like to work/train with me, please feel free to connect. Life is always pointing us towards newer configurations.
A specialist is defined as someone who understands exactly what a particular situation demands and I venture to understand recovery from that multidimensional perspective. There are three locations from which I derive my knowledge about recovery from mental health issues – my own ‘recovery’, my Ph.D. research and recoveries I see happening all around the globe- both documented in research and/or otherwise. Each of these sources routinely gives me new ideas, friends and knowledge. But equally significantly I do not lean on clinical or psychological theories to accomplish my (counseling or helping) goals. My therapeutic work and philosophy are unlike most ideas one may encounter in the regular course of academic pursuits. They come from a philosophical basis which is not normative (norm driven) in addition to a deep commitment to individuals and/or families, undergirded by an ethical stance of transparency, gain and empowerment.
My counseling practice is recovery-oriented: I endeavour to help people ‘recover’, whatever it may mean to someone. These collaborative efforts are made with a respectful stance and an acknowledgement of our shared histories and experiences. As opposed to a counseling ‘practice’, my work is about dialogues which are more likely to generate meaningful outcomes than ‘guidance’ or ‘counseling’ which the psy-professionals often offer. However, please understand that as someone who understands the intricacies of mental health and the workings of the mental health system very closely I am very straightforward, direct and brief in my approach for neither I intend to create long-winding counseling relationships based on dependencies nor I want to mislead someone if they are not making progress. The progress of a person is directly dependent upon their motivation and their aspirations, not my competency alone.
‘Recovery’ is a contentious, multi-layered phenomenon in mental health. It began as a movement from the experiences of those who had ‘recovered’ (primarily in North America and Europe, from the 1970’s onward) themselves but was soon adopted by psychiatric practices in many countries of the world, and later even in mental health policies in the those countries. In India people are unsure about ‘recovery’ because they are often not exposed to it. I advocate about ‘recovery’ and I am happy to respond to queries, doubts, dilemmas and misgiving about it. You are welcome to invite me for a talk, panel discussion, or symposium in your organization, university, department, institution or media channel.
Since I have similar experiences like someone who comes for dialogues with me, the manner in which I understand their point of view is markedly different as compared to counseling with someone who comes from a university-based knowledge of mental ‘illness’ labels. Usually our dialogues produce different outcomes. Fortunately the sources of my knowledge do not lie in psychology alone but in a wide spectrum of ideas I delve into; many of them are now part of my doctoral dissertation. My relationships with clients and their families are that of ‘peers’ and this is a fulcrum of new knowledge; which is also seen the future of mental health by researchers globally. I invite you to read these Testimonials.
We do not work out of a clinical space nor know someone who has gone to a hospital, clinic, half-way home, day-care center or another institution from where they come away healed, empowered, or recovered. Healing from traumas, setbacks, suffering or deep distress does not require a clinic but an open heart willing to pay attention to what another is saying and offer them other ways of thinking about their situations.
As my musical work is seamlessly interwoven into my life when someone comes to meet me for a dialogue they could pretty much be coming for a music class- it remains completely anonymous. I have two addresses that I operate from, one each in New Delhi and Faridabad, Haryana. I frequently work with individuals and families online via Skype (my preferred medium) or other online platforms as people approach me from any part of India and other countries.