Master Class: Frequently Asked Questions

We kept some of the FAQs here for archival purposes as well as your informational reading. Be aware that there are no current plans to schedule a future Master Class. If interested in training with Hedy Schleifer, please complete the form on this page to be informed when and where future trainings will take place.


  • What is the Master Class?

    From a new and important juncture in her professional life, Tikkun Learning Center (TLC) founder Hedy Schleifer made the decision to “download” the whole program that has revealed itself to her during the 22 years in which she has conducted a focused clinical laboratory for her work with couples. The Master Class is the educational program which includes everything Hedy found relevant to couples therapy, everything that Hedy would like to “download”, and everything that went into the creation of what Hedy calls:

    “Encounter-centered Couples Therapy” (EcCT).

    This method of working with couples is intended to help couples not only reconnect, but also achieve higher relational intelligence and greater relational maturity.


    “My approach to couples work is to visualize it as a path to the achievement of higher relational intelligence and greater relational maturity. Over the 22 years of experience in my clinical laboratory, as well as the 47 years of my personal work in the living laboratory of my own marriage, I have come to a new integration of the fabric of everything “relational” that informs me. It has crystallized into a simple concept of the “three invisible connectors”: the Space, the Bridge and the Encounter.

    I chose the title “Master Class,” because I want to transmit my work to couples therapists and relationship coaches who want to develop and hone their own mastery in couples work.

    I also long to have people take up the torch, and become themselves teachers and mentors of the unique discipline that I will be presenting.”

    If you apply and are accepted into this program, it is with the understanding that you are willing and ready to take steps at your growth edge as a therapist/coach and as a person, and that you are committed to the evolution of your own relational intelligence and relational maturity.

    It is important that you be interested in revealing your greatest, most vital, and passionate potential as a couples therapist / relationship coach.


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  • Who is the Master Class for?

    This is a program designed for experienced couples therapists and relationship coaches.


    “It is my genuine desire to work in a group setting, gathering kindred spirits, who feel called to a path towards assisting couples in their own journey towards connected living, and relational maturity. This, I believe, is essential to how we will transform our world. If you are seeking to work in-depth in order to grow your own relational maturity, and help others on the road, you will find this Master Class a unique opportunity. Every six months for three years you will give yourself a time for profound spiritual enrichment and professional growth.

    To do this work effectively, I must believe that you have the maturity and the willingness to be challenged to examine those areas where ego may undermine your own fullest potential, as well as areas where you may give away your power, or may be less than open to stretch into new behavior.”

    Among the elements forming the foundation of the work in the Master Class is one of honoring the space between us through mutual respect. The potential of the work that you will be doing is dictated not only by what you do, but by “the field” in which you do it.

    It is through the depth and integrity of your commitment to be in relationship to yourself, to Hedy as the group’s leader, and to the group of people who will gather and will be sharing a similar desire and intent, that the strength of the program will reveal itself.

    Therefore in the journey that the Master Class participants will be taking together, Hedy will be demanding the highest degree of openness and self-honesty, as you look in the mirror of each other’s lives. Participants will work so that they can objectively know themselves, and thereby engage with the couples they are working with from a place of clarity, power and humility.

    The intention that Hedy has, is that each of you grows your “presence muscle,” and learns to sustain a deeper presence from your own source. This means taking responsibility throughout each day to maintain a level of presence and attention and intentionality, whether in session or free time, so that the whole time is consecrated to growing your consciousness in connection.


    “I also intend for the Master Class to be a way for the participants to grow their “commitment muscle,” to themselves and to the group.  Just as I see marriage and life partnership as a covenant, I see the commitment to this class as a covenant with yourself to stay the course. The program requires you to open yourself to yourself, to me, and to the group, so that together we are bringing the teaching to every aspect of your life. The program over the three years is meant to facilitate major professional development, true relational transformation and fundamental personal change in the participants.”


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  • Who teaches the Master Class?

    Hedy Schleifer, MA, LMHC, founder of the Tikkun Learning Center (TLC),  teaches the Master Class.


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  • What is The Tikkun Learning Center (TLC)?

    The Tikkun Learning Center (TLC) is an educational institution founded in November 2010, and dedicated to the training of couples therapists, relationship coaches, and leaders in organizations.

    The vision of the center is the creation of a relational world. TLC sees itself as part of an evolutionary movement toward the development of relational maturity on the planet, through the systematic growth of relational intelligence.

    At TLC, we present a variety of programs in the art and science of connection, based in the Relational Paradigm, a ground of being that has the view of human beings as essentially “wired” for connection.

    Our work is also based on an integrative framework of theoretical, philosophical and psychological principles which combine many relational modalities.

    Founder Hedy Schleifer shares:

    “From the time I started to work as a young psychotherapist in 1976, interning at a psychiatric clinic in Tel Aviv, Israel, I saw the work I was doing embedded in a much larger frame, with bigger meaning. I had been raised by my parents in the tradition of Tikkun Olam, the healing and repair of the world. My parents miraculously came back from the Holocaust with a strong spirit of aliveness, and a resolve to instill in their children a commitment to work towards a better world. They spoke to me about Tikkun Olam. And it has been my dream to call the work that I do Tikkun, ever since these first years as a new professional mental health worker in Israel.

    In 2003, when I started to weave the relational tapestry that has informed my work over the years into an integrative framework, I knew that the name I would give the new trainings I was in the process of designing would be, indeed, Tikkun. I realized then that what I am teaching comes not only from the theories and the philosophies that have inspired me, but also from the experiences of my whole life. Some of the deepest learnings for me have come from the volunteer work I have done with indigent families, with families of soldiers missing in action, with Jews, Christians and Moslems wanting to dialogue for a better Middle East, and with fellow breast cancer adventurers. And maybe the most important lessons I have learned come from the 48 years of marriage to my husband Yumi Schleifer.

    While Yumi and I continue to do the joint work we started twenty years ago, teaching couples around the world, the Tikkun Learning Center is specifically dedicated to the education of therapists, coaches and organizational leaders. It is intended to create an international cadre of professionals, with a passionate dedication to increased relational maturity in the world.”


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  • Why should I consider applying for the Master Class?

    Encounter-centered Couples Therapy is a major step forward in couples therapy and a development of the relational paradigm. It is unique, and is available only through Hedy’s teaching, since it is an integration of her professional and personal evolution as a couples therapist.

    Therapists and coaches involved with the Master Class will be part of a cadre of professionals who do couples therapy in ground-breaking and incredibly powerful ways.

    You should consider applying if you want to reach another growth edge in your work with couples, if you feel drawn to work with Hedy, and if you believe that your work with couples can influence the healing of the world.


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  • Three years is a huge commitment of time. Why is the Master Class so long?

    It is indeed a huge commitment. However, Hedy believes that three years is the required time span to realize the conscious growth of relational intelligence, and the ripening of relational maturity. It is the amount of time needed to see the tangible results in your personal and professional lives that Hedy set as her goals for this training.


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  • What is included?

    The tuition for the Master Class includes:

    • Six five-day group sessions spread over three years
    • Five two-hour teleconferences with Hedy between sessions
    • Access to a private online community website
    • Additional teachings that Hedy may choose to offer to the group throughout the time together, based on need, or new learnings that are appropriate for this class.
    • Scholarships toward attendance at the Adventure In Intimacy workshop, EcCT three-day training, or any other Tikkun Learning Center training during the three-year Master Class.
    • Special placement of participant contact information in three sections of the website; and personal referrals of couples looking for a therapist in their area.
    • Copies of all video and audio programs and other relational products currently being sold by the Tikkun Learning Center
    • 35 CE hours (per 5 day session): The Master Class is approved for 35 Continuing Education Units for mental health counselors, social workers, family and marriage therapists, and psychologists
    • Program materials


    The Master Class is intensive and will include the following:

    • Mapping the premises of the Relational Paradigm
    • Exploring the theoretical, clinical and philosophical implications for welcoming couples into their deepest intimacies
    • Exploring couples therapy centered on the meaning and sacredness of the “encounter”
    • There are good couples, solid couples and lasting couples. What is a creative couple?
    • The role of the couples therapist, and his/her use of self in the therapeutic process
    • The process of encouraging couples to discover, welcome, and embrace full aliveness in connection
    • Locating the process of change in the “space-between”
    • Tracking the inter-generational transmission of trauma and intimate connections
    • Exploring the process of accountability and repair in couples
    • Welcoming “otherness” and establishing limbic resonance and regulation between partners
    • Helping couples learn the language of the “other,” thus becoming bi-lingual in order to know how to express emotional intimacy verbally, physically and sexually
    • The language of the body and its profound capacity for emotional expressiveness
    • Emotional intimacy and sexual intimacy: different, similar, the same?
    • The healing process following affairs
    • The role of humor


    Above all, Hedy will teach you how to create “presence” in yourself and in your couples. She will assist you in freeing blocked energy that is embedded in any of your own and your couples’ survival patterns, whether semiconscious and/or unconscious.


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  • Are there prerequisites?

    We require that you have a current couples practice, and feel dedicated to supporting couples in the fullest way you possibly can.


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  • May I bring my partner/spouse?

    Yes. Spouses/Partners are welcome and encouraged to attend.

    For couples where both partners are therapists, the therapist partner will receive a 25% scholarship for each session.  Both therapists are required to complete the full application, and are expected to be part of the entire three-year program.

    For couples where one partner is a therapist, and one partner is not, non-therapist partners are welcome to attend each five-day session for approximately 50% off the full tuition, with the commitment to attend all five days of each session selected.  Partners may attend as many five-day sessions as they want.  There is an additional discount for attending all six of the five-day sessions.


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  • How do you choose participants?

    Hedy’s primary method for choosing the participants, and for considering you for the program, is based on your experience, recommendations, and on her intuition. She will deeply read what you share in your application. She will listen to her own sense of your readiness and relational maturity. She will also evaluate your commitment to your own journey of relational transformation.

    It is also important that the group chosen will work well together, and so Hedy will also be looking at your application with an eye toward your potential contribution to the group dynamics.


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  • What can I do with all I’ve learned when I’m finished the Master Class?

    We welcome your creativity with what you learn! As mentioned, we are looking for torch bearers—people who are wanting to deeply learn Encounter-centered Couples Therapy.  It is our full hope that you will go on to create your own workshops, write articles, and do anything that feels appropriate in order to spread the work.  All that we ask is that you give us credit for the pieces you feel we contributed to the new wonderful things you are giving to the world and to your couples.


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  • Can I read what previous Master Class participants got out of attending?

    Yes.  The current Master Class therapists have written about what they learned through their participation in the Master Class, and how their couples practices have benefited.  There are also learnings from the non-therapist spouse/partners who have participated in the course.  You can read about all this in the Master Class testimonials page.


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  • Is the Master Class a Certification Program?

    No, the Master Class is not designed as a Certification Program.


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  • Do I need to prepare video tapes of my work with couples for the Master Class?

    The curriculum of the Master Class is currently not designed to include bringing video tapes to be reviewed.  Rather it is a growth journey in which I will be “up-loading” everything I know and passing it on.

    The learnings will be on many levels:

    • In vivo demonstrations
    • Lectures
    • Group work
    • Study groups
    • Tele-conferences
    • Pods

    The class becomes its own “living laboratory” for the exploration and the evolution of the Relational Paradigm. The class will open to the many layers of relational experiences which are meant to reveal themselves as we journey together. The in vivo, synchronistic and sometimes even raw experiential learnings will inform all of us.

    What is needed above all is:

    • an open-mindset
    • a willingness to be transformed
    • a readiness to enter into deeper connection
    • the humility to be a real learner
    • an enthusiasm for newness
    • a choice to be 100% engaged and present
    • the honesty to expose adaptive patterns
    • the strength and bravery to develop our leadership qualities


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How to Rebuild Your Life Together After an Affair

Watch this clip from the newly released AFFAIRS: A Step-by-Step Process for Reconnection video program.

“Healing After an Affair” is a two-day experience developed by Hedy, for the repair of the rupture, in the relational bond of couples, created by an affair. The private intensive session results in re-connection, restores compassion, forgiveness and intimacy, teaches how to make authentic mutual amends, and rebuilds mutual trust for a new future together.

Watch Hedy’s TED talk
About the three invisible connectors:
“the Space, the Bridge, and the Encounter”