Stanislav Grof, M.D., is a psychiatrist with over sixty years of experience in research of non-ordinary states of consciousness and one of the founders and chief theoreticians of transpersonal psychology. He was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, where he also received his scientific training: an M.D. degree from the Charles University School of Medicine and a Ph.D. degree (Doctor of Philosophy in Medicine) from the Czechoslovakian Academy of Sciences. He was also granted honorary Ph.D. degrees from the University of Vermont in Burlington, VT, Institute of Transpersonal Psychology in Palo Alto, CA, and the World Buddhist University in Bangkok, Thailand.
Dr. Grof’s early research in the clinical uses of psychedelic substances was conducted at the Psychiatric Research Institute in Prague, where he was principal investigator of a program that systematically explored the heuristic and therapeutic potential of LSD and other psychedelic substances. In 1967, he received a scholarship from the Foundations Fund for Research in Psychiatry in New Haven, CT, and was invited as Clinical and Research Fellow to the Johns Hopkins University and the Research Unit of Spring Grove Hospital in Baltimore, MD.
In 1969, Dr. Grof became Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University and continued his research as Chief of Psychiatric Research at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center in Catonsville, MD. In 1973, he was invited as Scholar-in-Residence to the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California, where he developed, with his late wife Christina Grof, Holotropic Breathwork, an innovative form of experiential psychotherapy that is now being used worldwide.
Dr. Grof is the founder of the International Transpersonal Association (ITA) and for several decades served as its president. In 1993, he received a Honorary Award from the Association for Transpersonal Psychology (ATP) for major contributions to and development of the field of transpersonal psychology, given at the occasion of the 25th Anniversary Convocation held in Asilomar, California.
In 2007, he received the prestigious >VISION 97< lifetime achievement award from the Foundation of Dagmar and Václav Havel in Prague, Czechoslovakia. In 2010, he received also the Thomas R. Verny Award from the Association for Pre- and Perinatal Psychology and Health (APPPAH) for his pivotal contributions to this field. He was also invited as consultant for special effects in the Metro Goldwyn Meyer science fiction movie Brainstorm and 20th Century Fox science fiction movieMillenium.
Currently, Dr. Grof is Professor of Psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) in the Department of Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness in San Francisco, CA; he has also taught at Wisdom University in Oakland, CA, and the Pacifica Graduate School in Santa Barbara.