After earning her Ph.D. in clinical and experimental psychology, Jean-Robert Bayard spent over fifty years working as a psychotherapist
helping troubled people understand their thoughts and feelings. Her
previous works include How to Deal with Your Acting-Up Teenager, a
self-help classic for desperate parents with publication in over a dozen
countries and several languages.
Throughout her career, Dr. Bayard worked tirelessly as an activist. With a passionate concern for racial equality, she
worked in the civil rights movement throughout the 60's and 70's by means
of marching (including the March on Washington in 1963), newsletters, negotiating with employers to hire African-Americans,
helping to document discrimination by landlords, and even going to jail
for sitting in front of a cement truck to protest the refusal of Pittsburgh's
labor union to admit African-Americans to build the United State Steel building.
Also determined to ease the suffering of animals at the hands of human
beings, she and her beloved husband Robert Bayard, Ph.D. founded and
ran a two-thousand-member California legislative network that was
instrumental in passing a number of animal rights bills. As one of the
originals of the modern animal rights movement, she was arrested twice
and went to jail for protesting cruel and unnecessary animal experiments
she discovered to be ongoing at Stanford University. She also founded a
newsletter for fellow psychologist to garner awareness and support
against unnecessary animal research.
Always a worker for peace, she was active with Beyond War and also
supported various do-good organizations including Childreach,
Greenpeace, the International Campaign for Tibet, the Peace Division of
the American Psychological Association and the Vanguard Society of
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
Recognizing no limits in her quest, Dr. Bayard benefited
throughout her life from a variety of spiritual approaches. Having been born into the family
of a Dutch Christian Reformed minister, she grew up with an exceptional
knowledge of the Bible and love of the teachings of Jesus. At age
nineteen she discovered the only book on yoga in the Los Angeles County
Public Library and knew almost immediately that this was a path she
wanted to follow.
Since then she never stopped studying and contributing to the great
Eastern spiritual philosophies, practicing their disciplines in conjunction
with Western science, especially via the writings of Sri Aurobindo, the
Dalai Lama, and Swami Rama of the Himalayan Institute. Starting in
1963 she underwent 264 hours of intensive training in Hinayana
Buddhist meditation at Wat Po in Thailand under the personal
supervision of the abbot, and later a several-year intensive course in
Tibetan Mahayana Buddhist doctrine, practice, and history at the
Nyingma Institute in Berkeley, California.
Never relinquishing her persistent focus on the elimination of the
suffering of others, she dedicated the last years of her life to writing a
series of nonfiction and fiction works for her fellow activists, teaching in
the practices how to get what you want by turning what hinders you into
tools, taking responsibility for your thoughts and feelings and showing
you through self-revelation as well as the example of the great activists of
Adapted from a resume written by Jean-Robert Bayard. She died in December 2011 at the age of 88.