The San Francisco Center for Self-Compassion offers a range of services, including depth-oriented therapy, classes, workshops, groups, and professional training ~ all focused on self-compassion.


Lea Seigen Shinraku, MFT

Lea is the founder of The San Francisco Center for Self-Compassion. She is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFC51836) offering depth-oriented, self-compassion-based therapy. Her clinical approach is warm, relational and pragmatic, incorporating Buddhist and Jungian depth psychology, and an understanding of attachment theory and neuroscience. She receives ongoing training and consultation so that she can best serve her clients and students.

A trained and practicing Mindful Self-Compassion teacher, Lea has studied with Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer ~ pioneers and leaders in the field of self-compassion research and training. She is in ongoing consultation as she pursues teacher certification in Mindful Self-Compassion.

Lea’s work as a therapist is informed by her meditation practice. She has meditated regularly for nearly 20 years and practiced residentially at San Francisco Zen Center. In 2009, she received lay ordination in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. 

Lea has enjoyed leading and co-leading groups, workshops and trainings at many counseling centers and zen centers, including: The San Francisco Marriage and Couples Center; The Marina Counseling Center in San Francisco; Integral Counseling Center at Pierce Street in San Francisco; Golden Gate Counseling Center in San Francisco; Austin Zen Center in Austin, TX; San Antonio Zen Center in San Antonio, TX; and Mid-City Zen Center in New Orleans, LA.

Prior to training as a therapist, Lea worked for 12 years as an editor and writer in New York and San Francisco. She has also lived and worked abroad. She received her B.A. in English from Vassar College, and her M.A. in Counseling Psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies.

As a 23-year San Francisco resident, Lea is committed to serving the diverse Bay Area community. She reserves a number of sliding-scale spaces for clients and students who need them. If the potential cost of therapy or a class or workshop is a concern, please contact her to discuss a fee that you can afford.