Dr. Lisa Miller

Professor, Clinical Psychologist, Spirituality and Psychology Expert

Lisa Miller, Ph.D., is the leading expert on spirituality and psychology, focusing on the scientifically supported “spiritual hub” for thriving, meaning and fulfillment. Dr. Miller is Professor and Director of Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College, and Executive Director of the Spirituality Mind Body Institute.


She has published over eighty scholarly articles and book chapters on mindfulness, thriving, spirituality and mental health and wellness.  Her practice and research focuses on adults, adolescents and children, and support for groups, from families to organizations.


Dr. Miller is recognized for her leadership in creating “Spiritual Academia” bringing together science with spirituality to form the first spiritually oriented graduate program in the Ivy League.  She is the founding Editor-in-Chief of the American Psychological Association journal, Spirituality in Clinical Practice and solo Editor of the Oxford University Press Handbook of Psychology and Spirituality.


She has led several million dollars of grants from corporate and family foundations as well as government grants on youth and thriving.   She has been elected to Fellow of the American Psychological Association, from which she also was awarded the Virginia Sexton Mentoring Award.


Dr. Miller is a graduate of Yale and the University of Pennsylvania, where she received her doctorate from Martin Seligman founder of positive psychology.  Dr. Miller speaks nationally and internationally on spiritualty in thriving, raising the implications of the science for our daily lives and fulfillment, conducts workshops and consultations.  She is a frequent contributor to the television and print media.


Dr. Miller’s latest book, The Spiritual Child: The New Science on Parenting for Health and Lifelong Thriving, was published by St. Martin’s Press in May 2015. She lives in Connecticut with her husband and three children.

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The Spiritual Child The New Science of Spirituality and Our Quest for An Inspired Life

A groundbreaking exploration of the neuroscience of spirituality and a bold new paradigm for health, healing, and resilience.

The Spiritual Child The New Science on Parenting for Health and Lifelong Thriving
St. Martin’s Press

In The Spiritual Child, psychologist Lisa Miller presents the next big idea in psychology: the science and the power of spirituality.

Raising Spiritual Children
Feeding the Fire of Natural Spirituality in Youth
Spiritual Life in Any Decade
Fixing the Empty Core: Putting Natural Spiritual Back into Childhood and Adolescence
A Culture of Striving Youth: Stoking the Fire of Natural Spirituality
When Teens Race the Treadmill of Middle Age

Good Housekeeping recently included Dr. Miller on a list of “10 Women Changing the Way We See the World.”


Read an opinion article on Dr. Miller’s work in the New York Times: “Building Spiritual Capital.”

Listen to Dr. Miller of NPR discuss “what it means to be a spiritual child” with Robin Young of Boston’s NPR.


Watch Dr. Miller speak on depression and spiritual awakening at TEDxTeachersCollege.

Learn even more about Dr. Lisa Miller and The Spiritual Child in the following shows and publications:

Praise for The Spiritual Child

"The Spiritual Child by Professor Lisa Miller, Ph.D. is not only a guide to understanding the innate untarnished spirituality found in children, but a call to nurture same in children for the safety and wellbeing of our society. Professor Miller is brutally honest and portrays our current predicament and values just the way they are—engulfed in a mad dash for material success. At the same time, Professor Miller compassionately shows us exactly how we can grow to be more spiritual and how we can secure for our children and for ourselves a lifetime of happiness."
- Rabbi Shaul Marshall Praver, Newtown, Connecticut, Founder of Global Coalition for Peace and Civility

"As a child, I tried to express my spirituality only to be rebuffed. Parents and teachers cautioned me not to mention “that” ever again. My peer group laughed at me. I quickly learned to keep my spiritual experiences to myself. Lisa Miller’s book, The Spiritual Child, is timely and vitally important. It gives parent’s permission to celebrate their child’s expression of his or her “natural” spirituality – what it means to be fully human. More than that, Miller invites parents and teachers to make a spiritual journey alongside the child in their care. Do that and we better be prepared to experience wonders yet untold."
- John Graham, M.D., President and CEO, Institute for Spirituality and Health, Houston, TX

"In this extraordinary new book, Lisa Miller does more than mediate the rocky relationship between science and spirituality. Not only will parents gain insight into the spiritual development of their children, they will see very clearly the traps we fall into when we value love less than logic and reason."
- Barnet Bain, producer What Dreams May Come, author The Book of Doing and Being.

"Hundreds of books discuss parenting issues, but The Spiritual Child is a special resource with a focus on fostering children’s spiritual lives. Perceptive, thought-provoking, and heavily researched, this is a valuable book for anyone interested in spiritual development in children, adolescents, and families."
- Gretchen Rubin, #1 New York Times bestselling author of THE HAPPINESS PROJECT

"Lisa Miller is the leading psychologist of her generation on the benefits of religion and spirituality. She asks, ‘What makes life worth living’ and finds evidence-based answers."
- Martin E. P. Seligman, PhD, University of Pennsylvania, bestselling author of AUTHENTIC HAPPINESS and LEARNED OPTIMISM

"Who can take the elusive subject of spirituality, subject it to rigorous scientific inquiry, and teach us more about it than we ever imagined? The answer is Lisa Miller. While honoring its depth and complexity, she shows in this important book how and why spirituality nourishes our children's well-being. And most important of all, she shows parents how to help this happen."

"A masterpiece. The Spiritual Child is an outstanding blend of science, psychology, and spirituality. Essential reading for anyone raising a child or helping others take care of their own children. This practical, complete, and easy-to-read book changes the landscape on raising children to be happy, healthy, and flourishing."
- Andrew Newberg, M.D., author of HOW GOD CHANGES YOUR BRAIN: Breakthrough Findings from a Leading Neuroscientist

"Startlingly fresh scientific research and beautiful teachings about the many ways children can lead parents to deeper spirituality and fulfillment. The Spiritual Child is a fascinating, ground-breaking and important work."
- Wendy Mogel, author of the NYT bestseller, The Blessings of a Skinned Knee: Using Jewish Teachings to Raise Self-Reliant Children

"Wonderful and thought-provoking . . . a warm, hopeful, and encouraging call for parents to nurture their children’s spirits as well as their bodies and minds. Thank you Dr. Miller!"
- Harvey Karp M.D., New York Times bestselling author of The Happiest Baby on the Block