Cognitively-Based Compassion Training (CBCT®)

CBCT® was developed by Dr. Lobsang Tenzin Negi, a Professor in the Department of Religion and Director of the Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics at Emory University. CBCT® promotes resilience and compassion through a series of cognitively-based contemplative practices that progressively lead to the cultivation of warm-hearted connection and gratitude towards an increasingly greater number of people, thereby widening our circle of care beyond those who are closest to us. This is attained through reflective practices conducive to the embodied realization of our common humanity, i.e. our shared aspirations for well-being and our shared vulnerabilities to experience afflictive emotions. As a result, rather than experiencing empathic distress when witnessing the suffering of others, one becomes deeply motivated to engage compassionately, i.e. with a strong and genuine motivation to alleviate suffering. With such deeply rooted motivation and great discernment, acts of kindness and compassion spontaneously arise.

While empathy is conducive to compassion, empathic distress caused by the vicarious experience of suffering may be paralyzing and it is conducive to burnout, which is characterized by emotional exhaustion, feelings of failure and inadequacy and depersonalization. This is in sharp contrast with empathic concern and engaged compassion, which is prosocial and known to activate neuronal networks associated with motivation and reward.

CBCT® enables the development of a wide range of skills that are conducive to well-being, including mindfulness, meta-awareness, impulse and cognitive controls, self-compassion, warm-heartedness, kindness and compassion towards self and others. CBCT® addresses the four key constituents of well-being, i.e. awareness, purpose, insight, and connection.

For additional information about CBCT®, visit


CBCT® is being offered to students, residents, faculty, healthcare providers, caregivers, school teachers, counselors, principals, and members of the Peoria community at large.

Meeting Times

The summer course will start on Tuesday, August 6th. Classes will meet every Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30pm to 7:00pm for 5 weeks (ending on September 5th).


SoaresMarcelo Bento Soares, Ph.D. is a Senior Instructor of CBCT®, a certified instructor of CEB (Cultivating Emotional Balance), and the developer of BREATHE (Bringing Resilience and Emotional Awareness Training to Healthcare Education). He serves as Head of the Department of Cancer Biology and Pharmacology and Senior Associate Dean for Research at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria [[email protected]]. Dr. Soares has been working to bring emotional awareness, resilience and compassion training to healthcare education, to healthcare providers, to educators, and to cancer survivors and their partner/caregivers.

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