LEWIS ARON
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ARON--Dr. Lewis, The community of the New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis (NYU Postdoc) mourns the passing of its beloved program director Lewis Aron, PhD, ABPP. "Lew" died on February 28, 2019, at the age of 66 following a long battle with cancer. An eminent psychologist-psychoanalyst, he earned his doctorate from St. John's University and his certificate of specialization in psychoanalysis from NYU Postdoc. He served as leader of NYU Postdoc for 21 years and developed an educational center for psychoanalysis that has achieved both national and international prominence. His 39-year career included 28 academic and visiting faculty appointments and 32 editorial and administrative positions both at home and abroad. His extraordinary scholarly record includes 14 books and 112 articles and book chapters. Several of them - most notably "A Meeting of the Minds: Mutuality in Psychoanalysis; A Psychotherapy for the People: Toward a Progressive Psychoanalysis" (with Karen Starr); and "Dramatic Dialogues: Contemporary Clinical Practice" (with Galit Atlas) - became instant classics in the field and broke new ground in theory and the application of relational psychoanalysis. He founded and was the senior editor of the Relational Book Series Perspectives (with Adrienne Harris) with over 115 books in this series. He also published scholarly works on psychoanalysis and Jewish studies. Lew was a gifted clinician, mentor, teacher and inspiring lecturer. He led numerous study groups in various areas of psychoanalysis and furthered the education of many clinicians and academics around the world. Lew received many honors during his distinguished career including serving as president of the Division of Psychoanalysis (39) of the American Psychological Association; the New York State Psychological Association, Division of Psychologist- Psychoanalysts; and the International Association for Relational Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. He earned fellow status with the American Board of Psychoanalysis, the American Board and Academy of Psychoanalysis, the American Psychological Association, and the New York State Psychological Association, as well as being an honorary member of the William Alanson White Psychoanalytic Society. Lew loved rock-and-roll music and playing his electric guitar. He could often be found practicing his guitar in his office and performing with SIG, the band he founded with his colleagues and played with at professional conferences. Lew was passionately devoted to his work and to his loved ones. His tireless energy, enthusiasm and commitment were always an inspiration to his family and many friends. He is survived by his loving and devoted family, children Benjamin, Raphi, and Kirya, his partner, Galit Atlas, and her children Emma, Yali, Mia Koch. Service Sunday, March 3, 11:30am at "The Riverside," 76th Street and Amsterdam Ave., NYC.


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Published in New York Times on Mar. 1, 2019.
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Memories & Condolences
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78 entries
March 10, 2019
Lews death comes as a great blow. He was a man of great energy, generosity, creativity and generativity. His passion and pure enjoyment in his lifes work were evident and contagious. He extended himself to others, including myself, well beyond the dictates of professional courtesy, motivated by his joy in connecting with new ideas. I owe much of my understanding of the relational school to his writing, and I owe my personal introduction to many in the relational community to his generous advocacy. I will miss his galvanizing presence. My sincere condolences to all those near and dear to him.
Celia Brickman
March 10, 2019
My deepest condolences to Lew's family, friends, colleauges, students and patients.
It is difficult to grasp the loss of a giant who was walking among us. Leading us, teaching us in a brilliant, creative and inspiring way and being so modestly present.
I was lucky to have known Lew. I participated in his reading group for 15 years and I had hoped it would go on for a long time. His courage to face death was admirable. He did it in his unique way. Facing death upfront and sharing his experience openly with others. Indeed , Lew knew what relational means in mind and sprit. May his soul be bound in the bundle of living'
Aviva Druks
March 9, 2019
What a profound loss. In the 30 years I knew Lew as a colleague and friend I was endlessly impressed by his caring generosity, his intellectual achievements, and above all his open and loving heart. My deep condolences to his family.
Elizabeth Brunoski
March 8, 2019
I will remember Lew always as a beloved teacher, mentor, friend, and inspiration.
With deepest sympathy to his family and all who loved him.
Marc Rehm
March 7, 2019
Lew at NYU Postdoc's 50th Anniversary Gala (April 2011)
Ricardo Rieppi
March 7, 2019
Lew at NYU Postdoc's 50th Anniversary Gala (April 2011)
Ricardo Rieppi
March 7, 2019
Lew at NYU Postdoc's 50th Anniversary Gala (April 2011)
Ricardo Rieppi
March 7, 2019
Lew at NYU Postdoc's 50th Anniversary Gala (April 2011)
Ricardo Rieppi
March 7, 2019
Lew at NYU Postdoc's 50th Anniversary Gala (April 2011)
Ricardo Rieppi
March 7, 2019

From all of us at IPSS, we join many from around the world in extending our sorrow and heartfelt condolences to Lew's family. Lew was central to Psychoanalysis in New York City and world-wide, so his loss is going to reverberate for a long time to come on a far-reaching level. He was also personally engaged with so many in a warm, open and vitalizing way we will feel his loss on this very direct level as well. We are reminded by this tragedy, of Steve Mitchell's untimely death involving the loss of a key figure who had such an influential vision of what psychoanalysis had been, was currently, and could possibly become. Oh, how these losses have punctuated what can be the greyness of our New York winters. Lew can be seen as someone who assumed Steve's mantle and took it in his own incomparable direction: reminding all his colleagues in his innumerable study groups about historical figures in psychoanalysis -- Searles, Jung, Loewald (the names go on) -- having his hand on the pulse of current trends and contributions in the field through his work as writer, editor, mentor, teacher, institute director and visionary colleague. He offered us a guiding perspective about what psychoanalysis could become by looking at how psychoanalysis could reform itself, exemplifying how Relational theory should self-critique and showing how an expansive, generative viewpoint could be brought into an understanding of clinical process. He had his preferences and theoretical perspective for sure, but he also was so encouraging of everyone else having their opinions too, so that lively debate occurred and there was always the sense that new thirds could come out of intricate dialectics. In his game openness, he led you to feel that new ideas could be brought in, considered and integrated. We will cherish his unparalleled generativity, and always remember his earnest, wry, twinkle. Peter Kaufmann, Sarah Mendelsohn and the IPSS community
Peter Kaufmann
March 7, 2019
Photo courtesy of Ricardo Rieppe, 2011. <br />
Lew's beautiful and generous spirit is so evident in this photograph. I am sending all my love to Lew.
Beatrice Beebe
Friend
March 6, 2019
I knew Lew best in the earlier years of his career. From the start, the unique qualities of his character--his caring for others, his scholarship, his social conscience, his activist nature, his feminist sensibility, his curiosity, joy, generosity, and humor--were in full evidence. Also, I took him to be a worrier. As he sat on our couch one weekend in the early 90s, he worried whether or not it was okay for him to wear his newly acquired diamond earring at work. I recall conversations with him, in the midst of his grief over Steve's death and his awe at carrying the Relational project onward, as he worried, "I don't know if I can do it; if I can live up to it." And I recall, in 1995, his walking with Stuart and me in Santa Monica in search of gifts to bring home to his kids, and his worrying the fitting title for his first book, trying out "A Meeting of Minds." I realize in this moment that what I am calling worry was simply the expression of Lew's deep humility. Lew was extraordinary, a rarity: a great man who did not think of himself as a great man.
Barbara Pizer
March 6, 2019
In 1992, I knew of Lew Aron only through his 1991 paper, "The Patient's Experience of the Analyst's Subjectivity." I had no picture of his open, connecting, cheerful face. But I received a letter from him upon publication of my first paper, on paradox and negotiation. His message was a warm congratulations, appreciation, and hello. I marveled that a member of our field reached out in such an affirming way to a stranger. In retrospect, it felt as if the voice of our field had said, "Okay, well done." Clearly, many others have received from Lew such an encouragement to stay with it, to move forward. Soon thereafter, Barbara and I invited Lew to speak at one of our institute's (MIP's) first symposia, on the theme of how feminism was changing psychoanalysis. From then onward, Lew and I became collegial brothers. We presented Division 39 panels together. We published papers and discussions in Dialogues. Each time, the project was at Lew's initiative. This man proliferated ideas. He was a generative dynamo. He opened, and shared, so many creative spaces. And, over lunches or dinners connected with our projects or conferences, Lew was jovial, caring, stimulating, vibrant, and fun. When Sam Gerson and I organized a Men's Group to meet annually at conferences, Lew became a charter member. Each year for several years, 7-10 of us would sit on the floor of someone's hotel room over take-out and bourbon. Lew's candor about life, his and each of ours, his energetic and nonperforming directness, enlivened our group and deepened intimate sharing. In 2003, he shocked me with the declaration that I had been "elected" to follow him as IARPP president. I missed his presence as he stepped down from that board. And, as our separate life orbits yielded fewer opportunities to make contact, I missed my friend Lew. Yet, each encounter, and the hugs that went with them, carried the abiding spirit of warmth. Lew had room in his heart, and prodigious mind, for so many people. And for so many dimensions of psychoanalysis. I loved Lew. Like so many others, I'm grateful for the place he had in my life. I am sad that Lew and Galit had so much of their time together so massively impinged on by the painful battle for his health. And I'm sad for all his closest people who could have hoped for more decades of richness together. May gratitude for what was there comfort what is now missing.
Stuart Pizer
March 6, 2019
My deepest sympathy to Lew Aron's partner Galit and the children, Benjamin, Raphi, Kirya, Emma, Yali and Mia, to Jane and family, colleagues and friends, during this time of unbearable loss.
I know Lew as a scholar and a master teacher. I have been reading his publications and attending his lectures for the last fifteen years and have invited him to present in a lecture series for Postgraduate Psychoanalytic Society [2009] and as a keynote for the Annual Education Conference for NYSSCSW [2016]. Lew has always been enthusiastic, warm and generous in accepting invitations and graceful and passionate in sharing his knowledge. I will sorely miss conversation about the meaningful new projects he has developed.
Lew Aron is a magnificent soul who has enriched many lives and will continue to do so for generations to come. His name will be listed in history, along with our psychoanalytic ancestors, for his significant contributions to the advancement of Relational Theory.
Susan Klett
March 6, 2019
As a candidate at The Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy in New York in 1990, I first met Lew in the classroom. I was the lucky student, and he was my teacher, an amazingly caring, brilliant and accessible role model who was as curious as I was! We maintained contact at conferences and through email after I left NYC, and Lew continued to challenge me to think, write, join in the conversation, and practice the art of psychoanalysis. Thank you Lew for your wisdom, your energy, your thoughtful and passionate teaching, your encouragement, and most of all, your humanity. I will miss you. I send many prayers of love and support to your family and to all those who will miss you deeply and profoundly.
Bliss Holland
March 6, 2019
The William James College community joins me in offering our condolences to Galit Atlas, Benjamin, Raphi, Kirya, Emma and Yali. Dr. Aron served as a Distinguished Faculty and Visiting Scholar at our college in our Center for Psychoanalytic Studies under the leadership of Drs. Martha Stark and Andrea Celenza. His online lecture on Mutual Vulnerability: An Ethic of Clinical Practice is a highly valued and thought provoking contribution to psychoanalytic thought. We all valued Lew for his innovative thinking, his mastery as a teacher, as a clinician and as a leader in training and education. His lecture is part of our Luminary Series. This idea of Lew as a luminary is such an apt designation as he brought light and understanding to his patients, students and colleagues. He is sorely missed. Our support to his family.

Stan Berman
Vice President for Academic Affairs
Associate Professor
William James College
Stan Berman
March 6, 2019
It is with a heavy heart that I join the world wide grieving over the passing of our colleague and leader, Lew Aron. As many have said, it is, indeed, hard to imagine who will take up the mantle. What we know for sure is that Lew was one of a kind, like his predecessor, Stephen Mitchell. It is tragic to have lost both of these scholars and leaders so early in their productive and passionate lives. My condolences to his family, friends and the countless people whose lives have been touched by him. Rest in peace, Lew.
Karen Maroda
March 6, 2019
To the family of Lewis Aron. Very sorry for your loss. We are told that at times such as these to Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep. Romans 12:15; JF
March 5, 2019
When Bernie Kalinkowitz died so many of his students, colleagues and friends were overcome with the devastating thought that there would be no-one to replace him. A search committee finally came up with Lew Aron to be Program Director of NYU Postdoc. All of the accomplishments mentioned in the New York Times obituary enumerated what Lew did to establish our program as the preeminent center of scholarship. The Graduate School of Arts and Science in accepting our program became the only university based psychoanalytic training in this country (soon to be followed by other universities.)
At this moment, it seems like some of us are re-experiencing what we felt when Bernie died. However can have faith that Lew's leadership will foster in us the striving towards excellence.
May his memory be a blessing for his family and for all who valued him.
Benjamin Lapkin
Coworker
March 5, 2019

Sue Grand
6:49 PM (1 hour ago)

to Psych

Thank you to Spyros and the executive committee for sustaining us in this time of grief. Much has been written here about Lew Aron's extraordinary gifts - his brilliance, his warmth, his joy of living, his boundless enthusiasm and curiosity, his generosity of spirit. For a very long time, he taught us how to live. In recent years, he also taught us how to die. His heart and mind seemed to expand in response to his diagnosis; his capacity to give and receive love was magnified; he refused all mystification; he grew in dignity, grace, and integrity even as he faced his own suffering. He was there for us all, and he gave blessings to so many as he faced his own passing.

Until the very end he was a role model of kindness, joy, authenticity, moral integrity and humanity. As a clinician and as an educator, he was an extraordinary model of how to be responsible to and for patients, supervisees, students and colleagues. Today Spyros and the executive committee sent all of us a message of comfort. Their message was also one of inspiration - in our grief, let us all hold one another at Postdoc and find ways to help each other and our unique program in Lew's spirit of kindness, inclusiveness, vitality, and care.
sue grand
March 5, 2019
Lew's passing is a painful loss. When Bernie K. died it seemed impossible that anyone could fill his shoes as Director of NYU Postdoc - and yet fill his shoes Lew did, and he did so admirably, with grace and intelligence and a professional competence beyond what one could have imagined. It seems impossible, once again, to imagine that anyone will be able to fill Lew's enormous, giant size shoes. He will be sorely missed both personally and professionally,
Richard Lasky
Coworker
March 5, 2019
I Join my friends and colleagues in mourning the loss of Lew Aron. It is a most personal and singular loss for Galit and their children. It is a reflection of Lews unique contributions to psychoanalysis that his loss to our community is so substantial.
Lews range of achievement is particularly wide-spread. His theoretical contributions to relational psychoanalysis are essential to its development. His commitment to our profession as the Director of the NYU Postdoctoral Program and as the President of Division 39 and the founding President of the Division of Psychoanalysis of NYSPA are indicative of his commitment to psychoanalytic psychology.
I was fortunate to have opportunities to work with Lew when I was President of Division 39 and when I followed him as President of the Division of Psychoanalysis of NYSPA. In these roles Lew was always helpful and encouraging. He also offered suggestions and support when I became the Director of the Postgraduate Program in Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy at Adelphi University. I will be forever in awe of his ability to juggle so many administrative and academic pursuits.
I extend my deepest condolences to Galit, Lews children, and the NYU Postdoctoral community.
Sincerely,
MaryBeth Cresci, PhD, ABPP
MaryBeth Cresci, PhD, ABPP
Friend
March 5, 2019
Lew was always generous with his support, time, and commitment to all in the postdoctoral community. I don't know how he did it but he did it all and he did it so well. He will be missed. While he died too young , he did and gave more in his 67 years than most people do an uninterrupted life. The loss to psychoanalysis, the postdoctoral community, and his loving family is great. My heart goes out to Galit and the family. Judie Alpert
judie Alpert
March 5, 2019
We, The Women's Therapy Centre Institute, wish to express sincere sadness about the passing of Lewis Aron. We knew him as an amazing, passionate and gutsy teacher and colleague. He engaged deeply with the way gender shapes us and was a true supporter of the feminist enterprise. Lew understood and articulated how marginality leaves one vulnerable and fuels our moral and ethical sensibilities. He urged us to be in touch with this as a source of strength. Our field is profoundly richer due to his brilliant contributions. Our deepest condolences are with his family and the global family of students and practitioners who will be a living legacy to his impact.

The WTCI Board of Directors, Faculty and Community
March 5, 2019
We at the International Association of Relational Transactional Analysis (IARTA) join the many voices here in honouring and thanking Lew for his transformative effect on psychoanalysis and the wider field of psychotherapy.His contribution to Relational Psychotherapy is immeasurable.
We welcomed Lew to our annual conference in 2013 in the UK where he generously offered two keynote presentations and took part inspiringly in discussions with our members. His warmth, intellect and humour were palpable. It is truly tragic that he has died so young - we all wanted more of him! And of course, we send our deepest sympathy to all his friends and to his family who will miss him sorely.

The Steering Committee and Members, IARTA UK
Carole Shadbolt
March 4, 2019
I wrote to Lew last December when I heard about his health problems. This is what I wrote:

Dear Lew,

I've heard through the grapevine that you're having a tough time these days, healthwise. I'm sorry that you have to deal with that experience. I hope you get well.

I also want to let you know that you've been an important influence on me, even though our contact has not been extensive. Participating in your reading group led me to learn about psychoanalytic scholarship I would not have likely read on my own. I also admired you for your critical thinking, your open-mindedness, and your ability to generate thoughtful discussion among participants with different backgrounds who came to the seminar with different levels of experience.

As I've gotten to know you, I have developed a keen admiration for you and consider you to be a role model for a psychoanalyst and for a psychologist--ever curious, always interested in learning, growing, and sharing.

I hope your health problems resolve and that you can have a happy and healthy New Year.

Best wishes,

Bill

I'm sad that my wishes didn't come true. I'm glad to have known Lew and I will miss him. I send my condolences to his family and friends and those he touched.
Bill Gottdiener
March 4, 2019
I have for many years greatly admired Lew Arons scholarship, which directly reflects the sort of person he was. Here is a passage from my 1997 review of his first book, A Meeting of Minds: "Aron presents this viewpoint in a manner that mirrors its basic tenets. His theoretical net is inclusive rather than exclusive. He considers the views of others, including those with whom he disagrees, carefully, respectfully, and fairmindedly rather than dismissively. He invites dialogue among multiple voices in contemporary psychoanalysis. Not long ago, in the last email conversation I had with Lew, I was lamenting the fragmentation of relational psychoanalysis into competing camps. Lews comment, Thats silly! reflected the same generosity of spirit that shined through the pages of his first book. I will sorely miss him as a friend and interlocutor.
Robert Stolorow
Friend
March 4, 2019
On Thursday February 28, 2019, our dear colleague and friend and leader and brave man, Lewis Aron died in New York City. It was the end we had all feared and mostly denied, as we accompanied Lew on a long and courageous voyage fighting and living with a life threatening cancer.

There is so much to say about Lew's life and work but I want to begin with his way of combatting and living with his illness.
He was brave but most powerfully he was generous with family, friends and colleagues. He has provided an amazing lesson in how to be open and available and at the same time continue to work for health and survival. We badly need, in our field, to be able to face difficulty, support each other as life and work patterns are put in question, and to create a climate of honesty and responsibility.
Yesterday I taught a class in which we were reading Ghent's great paper on submission and surrender.

I feel such admiration and love for Lew as he went through the health circumstance and death he had been handed. Surrender is not giving up. It is acceptance. It is opening to experience and what it will teach you.

When I think of his work life and when I read the wonderful messages of love and admiration, I am struck by the mixture of pleasure and admiration in so many reminiscences.
He had a rock band. The Sigs. He could build and maintain a serious psychoanalytic institution. He could work in systems local and national. He built structures.

Our work together included, the Ferenczi Conferences starting in 1991, the Sandor Ferenczi Center begin in 2008 with Jeremy Safran and me, the Relational Perspectives Book Series, with Steve from the inception, later with me, and adding Steve Kuchuck and Eyal Rozmarin. That series is closing in on100 volumes.

The work we did to bring the first conference on Sandor Ferenczi to the US was motivated dictated one might say by Steve Mitchell. Cannot speak for Lew but I had no idea who Ferenczi was. Steve was so amazingly good at empowering people, sending them on various errands, and so we did a conference held in NYC.
And sat in the audience amazed at the European analysts who in so many ways had kept the tradition and writings and work of Ferenczi alive. Judit Meszaros, Andre Haynal. Gyorgy Hidas, Judith Dupont joined with American analysts; Steven Mitchell, Bromberg, Shapiro, Therese Ragen Arnold Rachman, Benjamin Wolstein, Jay Frankel, Christofer Fortune and William Brennan.

For me, it was an astonishing and life changing introduction to Ferenczi and his work. I know Lew was technically my colleague in that venture but for me it was so new. I do think of him as also my guide into a new and amazing world. My image for that event is that it was like plate tectonics. Continents that were now far apart had once been joined. I knew my ancestors in psychoanalysis. I knew where object relations came from. Grandfather Ferenczi. Being part of that discovery with Lew was really wonderful, unexpected and surprising. Really so much of his work life and career had that effect and involvement.

In 2009 , with Jeremy Safran, Lew Aron and I inaugurated the Sandor Ferenczi Center at the New School. Over a decade we developed programs, lectures, workshops devoted to Ferenczi's model of interaction, elasticity of technique, trauma focused treatment and other psychoanalytic projects. We thought of this project as the site of ideals and projects at the heart of the historic mission of the New school and as a site for innovations in psychoanalysis along the lines of Ferenczi. It is shocking beyond measure that both my colleagues died within this past year. Miriam Steele has joined the center representing New School faculty. We have enlarged the board and we go in remembering Lew and Jeremy and working within their vision. But it has been overwhelming to absorb both these losses. With regard to Lew, I/we are at the beginning

There is a lot to remember and hold tight to as we register our loss of this amazing person. His career as a psychoanalytic educator, his director of institutions and so many structures: Psychoanalytic Dialogues, Div. 39, IARPP, and for over to decades NYU Postdoc.

His career as a psychoanalytic educator, director of institutions and so many structures: Psychoanalytic Dialogues, Div 39, IARPP and others were handled with efficiency and grace. And of course there was his ability to take on so much of the continuation of Mitchell's very premature death, through mentorship of students local, national and international and an astonishing vocation as a teacher of psychoanalysis in a series of study groups which continued to meet right into January of this year.

Talk about playing well with others. He had fun. He was playful and funny, all the while accomplishing a stunning array of tasks, books, and creative endeavors.

We are all wishing that he could have had more time. There was more to do and more love to participate in. I think of the wonderful pleasure of Lew's being with Galit's children Yali and Emma at their bar and bat mitzvahs last summer and how much he helped with their preparation. And I know from my last visits with Lew that he was incredibly proud of how deeply his children Kiara, Raffi and Benjamin were participating in his care.

We hold him close as we say goodbye. We can only sit with such admiration and care for Galit Atlas who has held so much in these past years AND created with Lew a life of work and love.

Adrienne Harris, Ph.D.
Adrienne HArris
March 4, 2019
Lew entered NYU Postdoc as a student a year before or after me. He was in some of my classes. Because Lew was so amiable and genuine, so well liked, my class made him an "honorary member" of our group. I remember a ritual Lew, a couple of my classmates, and I had at the annual Weekend retreat (then at Sachs Lodge) of taking midnight walks to the graveyard. We would laugh and shiver with the thrill of these late-night, scary walks. Later on, Lew briefly joined the Ben Wolstein supervision group I was in. With great respect, he asked very challenging questions of Ben that clearly showed his intellectual interests went well beyond clinical work alone. It was a pleasure to watch him grow from curious, somewhat shy student, to the masterful scholar, teacher, and leader that he became. Always open, available, warm, and encouraging with me, I valued every encounter with him. A twinkle was never far from his eye, no matter what the topic we discussed. He could look at anything critically, but without judging, from many different angles. That's some of what made him the profoundly wonderful friend, teacher, and leader that he was to so many. Although in recent years I rarely spoke with him privately, I felt his strong, supportive, and enlivening presence wherever I saw him. His straightforward and open battle with cancer reflects so much of how he lived his life-- with remarkable courage and strength. My heart fills with sadness each day when I think and feel the loss of him, not only for myself, but for those closest to him and for his professional family of psychoanalysts at NYU and throughout the world. My condolences to us all, and especially to Galit and his children.
Lynn Leibowitz
March 4, 2019
We at the National Institute for the Psychotherapies (NIP) join our psychoanalytic colleagues around the world to express our deep sadness at the untimely passing of Lewis Aron.
Lew touched so many people- as a brilliant scholar and deep thinker, as a generous teacher and supervisor, as an exuberant psychoanalytic historian, as beloved faculty in our National Training Program.
Many of us are grateful to have participated in his study groups. His excitement was contagious. We will miss him greatly.

The NIP Board of Directors and Community
Caryn Sherman-Meyer
Friend
March 4, 2019
I, like so many others, am heartbroken about Lew's passing. He was the most generous, respectful, and loving colleague we have. When making referrals, including for members of my family (the greatest compliment), I often think, Someone like Lew ... There was always room in his thoughts and relationships for others' scholarship, desires, and expansion. He loved to nurture and was genuine in all his ways of being. I credit the writing of my first book to the encouragement he gave me, in such a big-hearted way.

But most of all, Lew was fun! I could never get enough of being with him, laughing and joking, and though I have great memories, I will miss him dearly.
Andrea Celenza
Andrea Celenza
March 4, 2019
I was not fortunate enough to have known Lew personally but I have heard him speak several times and have read much of his work, both of which have helped me in my own clinical work. I found him brilliant, warm, entertaining, engaging, willing to be provocative and engage conflict but also willing to listen carefully to those who disagreed with him. An extraordinary man who contributed an amazing amount to psychoanalysis. My deepest condolences to his family and all those mourning him.
Carla Leone
Acquaintance
March 4, 2019
REMEMBERING LEW ARON

Lew was a dear friend over many decades of adventure. We met as psychoanalysts. I, a junior member of the community transitioning from 17 years in Community Psychology, just out of my advanced analytic training and developing my own voice,.Lew, already, an established internationally recognized giant theoretician, clinician, teacher, carrier of the new relational psychoanalytic vision.

Over time we grew a deepening sense of each other's take on things, our life experience and worldviews, which overlapped and differentiated. We learned the unique ways for how we could collaborate and support each other. I worked in a number of administrative roles under Lew in his position as Director of the Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis at New York University. As part of a competent work team I watched how with such a sense of clarity and care, he guided the program in its growth through trials and tribulations, always recognizing and supporting the gifts that others could contribute to our mission. Lew's power came from his capacity to empower. It is a unique administrative skill I have rarely seen executed with such mastery and love.

But, I also spent many hours with Lew in another way, when out of his love and desire to play rock and blues guitar, he formed a band, originally of psychoanalysts, who could play the kind of music he loved. He called the band SIG after the giant innovator of our craft. Over the years of practices, performances and dinners together that often preceded these activities, I came to know a more intimate, different side of Lew, longing to expand his life expression, not just as teacher/analyst or guitarist but as a vulnerable fellow human traveler.

I have come to know that my experience of Lew has not been so different than many, many others whose lives he has touched and especially his family. In the midst of his ruthless concern for his many missions as a leader in our field, Lew never lost an opportunity for tender connection and often surprising and wonderful humor. He was a mensch, a rare human being who had the courage to share his vulnerability out of the strength of wisdom practiced in every dimension of his life.

I loved him madly as a compadre and will miss him deeply.

Steven Knoblauch Ph.D.
March 4, 2019
In one's life one meets a few great teachers. Lew was a great teacher and and inspiration. His depth of knowledge was astounding. He will be greatly missed.
Louse Reiner, LP, seminar member
March 4, 2019
Lew knew more about the broad range of Psychoanalysis than anyone I know and he taught psychoanalytic thinking to more colleagues than anyone I know. Though he was an icon in this field he was humble and unassuming and wore his stature with utmost humility. Perhaps more than anything, he was generous - incredibly generous with his time for colleagues and in his uncritical embrace of them. He has left an indelible mark in his field and among the very many who crossed his path.
There were few like him and he will not be forgotten by those who knew him and by those who did not but have read his huge quantity of seminal, though clear and jargon free writing.
Irwin Hirsch PhD
Friend
March 4, 2019
I only knew Lew peripherally, had many email interactions about Judaic subjects as well as psychoanalytic ones. But but none recently. Here is a response he made to me during a lengthy email discussion we had w Jeremy Shafran, Wilma Bucci, Lew and myself:

Hi Leon,

Thanks for sending me the letter as well as these very thoughtful questions. I'd be glad to talk about them sometime or engage in a panel discussion as per your previous email suggestion. Answering properly would mean writing another paper (at least) and I just can't do that right now so I won't attempt it but here are a few initial reactions.

I think the language of one and two person psychologies as well as the terms intrapsychic and interpersonal get absorbed into political rhetoric and flag waving so that it is very hard to be clear about their precise meaning to the writer. Just as an example in regard to your question about Klein: Where Anna Freud may be regarded as having had more of a two person psychology because of her attention to the parents, she could be accused of a more one person psychology in that she downplayed transference and countertransference - at least as compared to Klein. And whereas Klein may be regarded as more one person because of her neglect of reality, she could be viewed as more two person because of her drawing attention to projective-introjective processes, even if she kept her own focus on the phantasy side of these processes. From my point of view neither of these pioneers grasped the interactional dimension or gave it the prominence it deserved in the way that American interpersonalists came to understand and apply it.

I won't even begin to get into your very clear explanation of drives as per Brenner except to point out that the jump from drive derivatives to drives as abstract categories is an inference (according to Brenner) that is based on the consensus of a community of analysts - but that in turn depends on analysts using a particular method which in turn defines and is defined by the analytic community. The problem is that in the present state of psychoanalysis there is a lack of consensus not only on the inference making and theoretical conclusions but on the method as well. Which is to say that there is no consensus in the analytic community and there is a legitimate question as to whether there even is an analytic community (versus fragmentation).

Finally, I am in complete agreement about the neglect of child analysis - and especially your point about its being considered applied or derivative. I would add, however, that all of psychoanalytic therapy is similarly considered applied and derivative and so the exclusion of psychotherapy in general is problematic to these considerations.

In any event, please understand that these are simply initial reactions but while I am not ready to write a careful response at this moment, I did not want your note to go unanswered. Hope to continue a dialog with you personally at some point.

Lew
Leon Hoffman
March 4, 2019
Lew IARPP 2018
At our band practice last week we were remembering the musical journey Lew began shortly after first learning to play basic guitar, we think it was 2005. He invited those who wanted to play to form the band that we named SIG!! a few years later. As in all his endeavors Lew poured his heart and body into daily practice that flowered into the guitar player many of us have heard play at Postdoc weekends, and a variety of other venues over the years. Steve Solow commented the other night that what he likes best about the band and Lew's dedication was how we went from being an absolutely awful band, but stuck with it with monthly practices and getting out there to perform regardless, to the point we can say we could play and perform fairly well.

Lew and I were the two no-experience performers in the band, and we both shared and reinforced our slowly developing talents in a very personal way I will treasure. A particularly fond memory is when Lew and I attended a Robin Ford blues guitar camp a few years back in the Adirondacks. I came into our tiny cabin after hiking, and Lew, in August, at guitar camp, to relax, was reading...... Civilization and Its Discontents! When I laughed and asked why then and there was he reading something he could likely recite out loud from memory he said "Preparing for a new study group next month, and I'm thinking of it from a new angle."

I first met Lew when I joined what was then called the Long Island Postdoc Study group with Lew, George Goldstein and George Whitson and others in the late 80's when I was a student at Postdoc. Lew organized it in part to help group members formulate and get support for ideas they had for possible papers. From then until now he thrived on helping others thrive, and did so with a combination of personableness and individuality that always supported friendship and growth.

As is so in whatever he did, and with whomever he collaborated, our experiences with Lew and SIG!! will live together strongly, clearly, always there, always ready to turn it up, and remember his riffs, solos of love and life and rock n roll.

John
John Shaw
March 4, 2019
You were my inspiration for years. You will be missed.
Zelda Knight
March 3, 2019
I was so fortunate to be a member in Lew's reading group for about 13 years. He emdodied a relational way of being - a brilliant leader & mentor and so open to other points of view, respectful, accessible - truly a special person. He loved psychoanalysis & his enthusiasm was infectious. He will be missed. Sending my heartfelt condolences to his family.
Lynn Hugger
March 3, 2019
Lew, you were respected, appreciated, and loved, because you left your mark as a thinker, a prolific writer, a great teacher and "mensch". What was most extraordinary, though, is that you always appeared like the kid from next door who walked the walk. All the way to the top. Of NYU-PostDoc, and of the psychoanalytic world. You ran our PostDoc without "putting on airs", as they say in Atlanta, where you helped me settle into the psychoanalytic community, after I left NY and PostDoc. You were the unsurpassed and ultimate buddy on our collective psychoanalytic journey. I will always miss your presence.
Yudit Jung
Friend
March 3, 2019
Dr. Lewis Aron was one of the most influential psychoanalysts of our time. I am deeply saddened to hear this heart breaking news. I met him twice in recent years. At the TICP organized conference in Toronto and at the International conference in New York and I was deeply impressed by his personality and knowledge. This is a big loss for the psychoanalytic community in North America and in the world as he made an invaluable contribution to our field.
Temo Keshelashvili
March 3, 2019
2008
Lew was an extraordinary man and always so approachable and kind. I remember him playing with his band during the 2008 Division-39 meeting in NYC. Early clinicians dancing along with their mentors and idols...a perfect way to remember Lew's legacy. My deepest condolences to his friends, students, colleagues and family. He will be missed and always remembered.
Winnie Eng
Acquaintance
March 3, 2019
The Trustees of the Accreditation Council for Psychoanalytic Education mourn the loss of Lewis Aron, PhD, ABPP (Psychoanalysis in Psychology). Dr. Aron was a member of the first class of ACPEinc Trustees. Later, the New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis, which he directed, was the first program to achieve ACPEinc accreditation. We shall miss his steadfast friendship and his constructive engagement with us.
Sheila Hafter Gray, MD, FABP, President
Accreditation Council for Psychoanalytic Education, Inc.
Sheila Hafter Gray
Coworker
March 3, 2019
I am deeply thankful for Lew's writing, teaching, and friendship. His contributions and generosity of spirit will be carried forward by all those who knew him and those who will receive the benefits of his legacy for many years to come.
Ernesto Mujica
March 3, 2019
As I was reading "Peter Pan" to my young boys last week, I came across this beautiful line in the story...

"Never say goodbye because saying goodbye means going away and going away means forgetting."

I/We will never and cannot ever forget Lew. I am so saddened by his loss but also so grateful for having met such an extraordinary analyst, mentor, and person, as well as for all the things he taught me/us that you can't find in a book.

My heartfelt condolences go out to Galit and her children, Lew's children and family, Spyros, Lew's close friends, and this incredible community at Postdoc.

Ricardo
Ricardo Rieppi
March 3, 2019
It is clear to me what he left us with:
The open arms.
to everybody knocking on the door,
and every new thought.
.

Shmuel Hazanovitz,
Jerusalem
Shmuel Hazanovitz
Coworker
March 3, 2019
I have spent the last days remembering and grieving for Lew, and reading the wonderful memories and tributes so many of you have posted. I have had few words, few thoughts to add. But I find today, on the morning of Lew's funeral., that I want to join in.

For the past several years, on Friday mornings I have had the fun, excitement and inspiration of reading Freud with Lew.

Before joining the group, I had for years saved Fridays for writing and being with myself after an intense week with patients. But after joining the group, by some combination of bus, car and subway, on Friday morning, I got myself back to NY. Often on the way I would find myself thinking oh, this is too much! But always, once there I felt so enlivened, learned so much, felt so engaged and welcomed by Lew (and the whole group). I couldn't imagine life without my group with Lew.


Today, deep in sadness, I want only to say that I will be forever grateful to you, Lew not only for everything that so many of you have mentioned what you did for Post-Doc , your seminal contributions to our field, your wonderful, alive mind and presence, your warmth, and support, but also for how in every group, in every conversation with you, I felt more alive; smarter; and came away bursting with new ideas both yours and my own. What a gift you gave me

Lew, I will miss you deeply. I send my condolences to Galit and to all the kids. I know that for all of you, the heartbreak and loss goes way beyond anything I can express.

In sadness,
Lisa Lyons
Lisa Lyons
March 3, 2019
We have lost a truly visionary person; generous, wise, compassionate, a leader, like no other.

Lew developed a passion for playing the guitar, and now, to paraphrase George Harrison, Our Guitar Gently Weeps .
Tamar Martin-Franklin
March 3, 2019
Lew was a great man and a great guy, full of love and warmth, one who has meant so much to so many people--(and to me in particular) in a way that is wonderfully out of proportion to the number of hours spent together ...A source of great support, positivity, radiant affirmation, understanding, and natural grace....incredibly responsive and acceptant, and of course, intellectual brilliant ...a beacon toward what we can all do to be better
Stephen Seligman
Friend
March 3, 2019
The Trustees of the AccreditationCouncil for Psychoanalytic Education mourn the loss of Lewis Aron, PhD, ABPP (Psychoanalysis in Psychology). Dr. Aron was a member of the first class of ACPEinc Trustees. Later, the New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis, which he directed, was the first program to achieve ACPEinc accreditation. We shall miss his steadfast friendship and his constructive engagement with us.
Sheila Hafter-Gray,MD
March 3, 2019
My deepest condolences to Galit, the kids, Spyros, and to everyone here that was taught, mentored, supervised, collaborated with, and who loved or was loved by Lew. My only direct contact was a long weekend course he taught during my analytic training, we requested him specifically and as sounds usual, he generously agreed to our benefit. We were lucky to study with him. IARPP and his writings and teaching made it possible to be touched by him and his work no matter where we lived. Through his work with Stephen Mitchell, and with those that created IARPP, he helped offer many of us a professional home and community across the globe. Its almost possible to see the luminous skein of connection through him around the world. What a life, with so many the richer for our connection, however small, with him. Thank you Lew.
Teresa Rose
March 3, 2019
Dear all,

While mourning the loss of Lew I keep in mind with deep appreciation our meetings in Oslo and New York. I am among the many who was deeply influenced by Lews writing, and I am forever thankful for the strong support he gave to my work.

My thoughts go to Galit and family.

Jon Sletvold
Jon Sletvold
March 3, 2019
a light has gone out - we will keep his work alive, Reb Lew says . . .
risa mandell
March 3, 2019
Lew was an extraordinary person in so many ways, sharing his knowledge, wisdom, humor, and humanity with so many. He will be forever in our hearts and minds. Sending my deepest condolences to Galit and the kids. Peace, Dale Gody
Dale Gody, Ph.D.
Friend
March 3, 2019
I am torn apart at the heart. We have lost not only a great contributor to psychoanalysis but also someone who has shown us how to lead a dedicated life. May his memory be blessed.
Shelly Bach
March 3, 2019
Lew always had the upper hand on me.
Great memories supersede the many years since we lost touch.
Hughie Auman
March 3, 2019
I met Lew at an important juncture in my professional training. I spoke to him as my mentor when I needed to make a decision about whether to leave a beloved therapist in order to pursue analytic training. His understanding and compassion were genuine and helpful and I remember the interaction although it was years ago. I was so sad to hear of his passing.
Laurie Schwartzer
March 2, 2019
Such a totally special person. He touched so many in so many ways. His brilliance and love will stay with so many of us forever. A true visionary and pacesetter. May all those very near and dear know that he was loved and appreciated far and wide. I wish u comfort and healing .
Sincerely, Helene Torker
March 2, 2019
Lew's workshops and reading groups provided a portal into the dialectical integration and its tensions in psychoanalysis. The near and far of Lew is felt like a thunderstorm that wakes us out of our slumber. May healing and light fill the hearts of his beloved family.
Denise Phillips Phd
March 2, 2019
Dear All,
We at the Minnesota Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis wish to offer our condolences to Lews family and join the multitude of others who are currently mourning his passing. As is the case with so many others, Lew holds a special place in our hearts. In 1994 Lew was quite helpful to us here in setting up our first Psychoanalytic Institute. He then came here to teach and that experience was like sitting down with a good friend as he in his warm conversational manner shared with us the essence of what became his book A Meeting of Minds. This experience help further many of us in our journey to become psychoanalysts. Later as Division 39 president he once again reached out to us to offer support in our growing pains. Finally and most recently, he willingly served on our Advisory Board and was always immediately responsive to our requests for help and guidance. It is hard to imagine he wont still be there in his loving and caring capacity.

Gary Perrin
Clinical Director of Training, MICPP
Gary Perrin
March 2, 2019
I have known Lew Aron for over 25 years. I started therapy with him in 1991 and while I wasn't seeing him any longer on a regular basic, I would still make appointments with him, my last being in 2018. He was a wonderful person, kind, empathetic, funny and clearly passionate about his work. He always treated me with kindness and respect. I cannot imagine a world without Lew Aron in it. I am so very grateful to have had him in my life for as long as I did!! My sincere condolences to his family and friends!
Suzanne H.
March 2, 2019
The number of people Lew touched personally and intellectually is incalculable. The number of future generations that will benefit from Lews touch is unimaginable. His knowledge and intellectual curiosity are woven into the fabric of so many of us around the world: We are each a memorial candle in his commemoration.
Michael Zentman
Coworker
March 2, 2019
In memory of Lewis Aron
Suzanne H.
March 2, 2019
Along with Sue, I met Lew at Roosevelt Hospital in the 80's. I also was an intern and then joined the staff at the hospital. We shared the experience of being young psychologists in NYC. We parted ways, between White and NYU, and he went on to develop his wonderful ideas, writing, teaching and speaking all over. I just recently reconnected with him at CPPNJ at his presentation at our NJ Institute and it was wonderful to see him. I didn't know how sick he was. What a tremendous loss to our psychoanalytic world. So sad...
Meryl Dorf
March 2, 2019
In his first book, A Meeting of Minds, Lew wrote that "people need to connect with others. And they want to connect with others where they live emotionally, where they are authentic and fully present." (1996, p. 80). Lew invited and welcomed this desire to connect, so that talking with him brought a feeling of being granted access to where he lived emotionally, in the moment; where he was authentic and fully present. And, not surprisingly, he drew this out in others.

We in the Philadelphia relational community grieve along with others mourning Lew's loss. And, we will strive to keep his memory alive through ongoing teaching and celebration of the work he so loved.

With love to Galit and all of the kids, whose loss is enormous.
Rachel McKay
Friend
March 2, 2019
As someone who only knew of Lew Aron through his writings, I want to say how much his work shaped me as a clinician even without ever meeting him. His mind and clarity for expressing analytic process were truly a gift. This is an immense loss for the community. My deepest condolences and care to Galit (who is an amazing analyst, author, and teacher!!) and the rest of the family. Thank you for this opportunity to share our mutual appreciation and grief. May his memory be a blessing.
Vanessa Bright
March 2, 2019
I met Lew when I was a psychology intern at Roosevelt Hospital in 1985. He was a staff psychologist, hadn't written any books yet, was not well-known. What I remember about him was his extraordinary eye-contact-- he looked you straight in the eye. To me, that epitomizes Lew Aron.
Sue Kolod
March 2, 2019
The world of Psychoanalysis & particularly your beloved Postdoc mourn your passing, as do classmates & colleague like myself who always admired your vibrancy, dedication & searching mind. You inspired me & you led the way to understandings for many. I shall miss your wisdom & your smiling presence, your leadership & caring.
Ruth Jaffe
March 2, 2019
Remembering Lew is a joy, knowing him was a special experience. His humanity, his thrilling intellect were beyond compare. He was kind and accepting, qualities of a therapist that made him memorable. My deepest condolences to his family, his partner and his colleagues and patients.
Carol Zeits
Classmate
March 2, 2019
It is so hard to imagine this world without Lew. He was such a powerful life force, so full of knowledge, generosity, kindness and compassion. His love for psychoanalysis, the NYU Postdoc program that he lead with brilliance and dedication, his students and most of all his friends and family was boundless. Lew showed us all what it meant to confront death, always fighting to stay one step ahead of his illness, while simultaneously facing it head on, and sharing so openly. One can never be prepared for such a loss. May his memory be for a blessing.
Lily Blank
March 1, 2019
Even though we saw it coming, it seems impossible to me that Lew is gone. He was the consummate analytic scholar, a damn good rock guitarist and wonderful guy who broke every mold.
Mark Mellinger
March 1, 2019
On Behalf of the Psychoanalytic Division of the New York State Psychological Association, I extend our heartfelt condolences to Lew's closest and extended family, colleagues and friends internationally. In 2004, Lew Aron became the founding president of the Psychologist-Psychoanalyst Divison of the NY State Psychological Association. In addition to his brilliance as a scholar, educator, and psychoanalyst, he was a fierce advocate for the importance of contemporary psychoanalytic contributions to our understanding of the human condition, the therapeutic process and as an important specialty in psychology. He provided leadership not only through his scholarly works, and as an educator, but through his involvement in professional associations. He worked to assure that our voice not be diminished. We cherish him, his professional contributions and his personal warmth.
Susan Warshaw
March 1, 2019
It is hard to imagine the world without Lew lighting it up. My deepest condolences to the family. My gratitude to Lew who graced us all with his joyous heart and soul.
Susan Parlow
March 1, 2019
To Lew's family and friends, My heartfelt condolences to you on the loss of a man who was so special in so many ways to so many different people.
Warmly,
Ronnie Lesser
March 1, 2019
mc verga
March 1, 2019
You left us too quickly and yet you've given us so much. For always grateful that our minds have met in this life.
Marilina Rufino
March 1, 2019
To the Aron Family: My heartfelt sympathies go out to the family and friends during this difficult time. I hope that the promise in 1 Thessalonians 4:14 can bring comfort. Knowing that there's a hope for the ones we have lost in death can be so reassuring.
March 1, 2019
My deepest condolences to Lewis Aron and his family. At a conference in Toronto I found him very approachable engaging and informative. I remember that interaction.
Rosa Bergman
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