Upcoming Seminars

Please select the blue "View & Purchase" button below next to the event you wish to attend.

Course Information

The 2nd Annual Seminar on Working with Syntonic Defenses in Davanloo’s Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy



John Hans Rathauser, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist with over 40 years of clinical experience. Following completion of his doctorate in clinical psychology at the California School of Professional Psychology, Los Angeles campus, Dr. Rathauser trained at the Postgraduate Center for Mental Health in New York for five years. He subsequently joined Dr. Davanloo’s Core Training Program in Montreal in 1994, where he studied with Dr. Davanloo for 8 years and attended annual metapsychology conferences for 23 years. Dr. Rathauser’s private practice in Kendall Park, N.J. is largely devoted to the practice of Davanloo’s Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (IS-TDP), as well as providing training to mental health practitioners. Dr. Rathauser currently offers a D-ISTDP core training program based in Los Angeles, in addition to two monthly online training groups. He has given numerous presentations on IS-TDP nationally and internationally and is a supervisor for the International Experiential Dynamic Therapy Association (IEDTA). You can contact him at johnrathauser@comcast.net.

Jonathan Entis, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist in private practice in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He is licensed in both Massachusetts and New York. He is on the faculty of Harvard Medical School, where for the past four years he has taught and supervised in ISTDP. He is an IEDTA-certified teacher in ISTDP, and has presented both nationally and internationally. In 2021 he co-presented the first annual seminar on working with syntonic defenses in Davanloo's ISTDP with John Rathauser, PhD. Jonathan offers individual training as well as a monthly online group in Davanloo’s ISTDP. Jonathan completed a 3-year core training in ISTDP with Patricia Coughlin and has been in weekly supervision with both Patricia Coughlin, PhD and John Rathauser, PhD. You can contact him at drjonathanentis@gmail.com.

Workshop Description

We are pleased to announce the 2nd Annual Seminar on Working with Syntonic Defenses in Davanloo’s Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP).  John Rathauser, PhD and Jonathan Entis, PhD, will be leading a 1-day webinar on working with syntonic defenses, or defenses with which the patient is highly identified.  

This training is a continuation in a yearly series on working with syntonic defenses with a strong focus on defiance.  Keynote addresses and clinical vignettes will be shown.  The cases to be presented will be different than those shown last year.

Syntonic defenses present unique challenges. These resistances are invisible to patients and at times the therapist.  Failure to recognize and work through syntonicity can result in confusion, misalliance, and lack of integration of the fundamental principles of the therapeutic endeavor. A full understanding of how syntonic defenses operate and how to approach them therapeutically is a requisite for mastery of Davanloo’s ISTDP.

In this webinar, we will cover key tenets of how to identify syntonic defenses and how to work with them.  We will place a particular focus on the hidden defense of defiance and the 3-stage process for de-activating, clarifying and then challenging it. 

Syntonic defenses, including defiance, are prevalent in nearly all patients with early developmental trauma, and are often at the root of therapeutic impasse.  This training aims to equip participants with the tools to better recognize these phenomena and effectively address them.

In addition to didactics, ample time will be given to audiovisual demonstration of real cases.


Target Audience

Psychologists, Psychiatrists, Social Workers, MFTs, and Counselors


Course Content Level

Intermediate and Advanced



The morning session presented by John Rathauser

 9:00am – 9:45am Keynote presentation on treatment of syntonic defense in D-ISTDP

 9:45am – 10:00am Question and answers

10:00am – 10:15am Break

10:15am – 11:30am Audio-visual presentation of treatment with a patient with high level of Syntonicity

11:30am – 12:00pm Question and answers

12:00pm – 1:00pm Lunch break


The afternoon session presented by Jonathan Entis

1:00pm – 1:45pm Keynote presentation on Defiance in D-ISTDP

1:45pm – 2:00pm Question and answers

2:00pm – 2:15pm Break

2:15pm – 3:30pm Audio-visual presentation of treatment with a patient with syntonicity and defiance, showing the importance of twinning de-activation with direct confrontation

3:30pm – 4:00pm Question and answers



Course Objectives

Explain the concept of syntonicity

Describe the concept of defiance

List behaviors often associated with defiance

Identify Davanloo’s concept of deactivation of defiance

Review Davanloo’s concept of deactivation of the transference

Define the 3-stage process of working with defiance



Refund Policy

Full refund, less a $35 administrative fee, is available when canceling prior to 30 days before the course.  No refund is given less than 30 days before the seminar.

Evaluations and Certificates are available by email and online following course completion at www.ceuregistration.com

There is no conflict of interest or commercial support for this program

For questions or concerns, please contact johnrathauser@comcast.net or drjonathanentis@gmail.com