Thomas Hora was born on January 25, 1914 in Northern Hungary. He was educated in Budapest and Prague, receiving medical degrees from Royal Hungarian University, Budapest in 1942 and from Charles University, Carlsbad, Prague, Czechoslovakia in 1945. He was trained in psychiatry at Budapest General Hospital and Carlsbad City Hospital in Carlsbad, Czechoslovakia. In 1944, he married Madeleine Ernyei, a fellow medical student, who became his “beloved companion” until she passed on in 1992.
In 1945, Thomas and Madeleine Hora emigrated to the United States. After meeting the standards required by U.S. laws to qualify him as a medical doctor, Thomas Hora went on to receive his psychoanalytic training at the Postgraduate Center for Mental Health in New York City. In 1952, Dr. Hora established private practices in New York City and in Bedford Village, New York. For the next fifteen years, he was active in professional psychiatric circles in the U.S. and in Europe, and was invited to deliver over forty lectures and to submit an equal number of articles for publication in medical journals. In 1958, in recognition of his highly original contributions to his field, he received the Karen Horney Award for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis.
However, at about the same time, Dr. Hora was inspired to look beyond the conventional medical practices he had earlier embraced, in order to explore alternative solutions to the pain and suffering experienced in the human condition. Having observed, first-hand, that orthodox forms of treatment did not always bring healing to the ills of mankind, he sought to obtain a deeper understanding of the issues that, in turn, led him to spiritual literature. From this point, Dr. Hora was fully engaged in a spiritual quest that led to the birth of Metapsychiatry in 1977.
His search encompassed the study of various theosophies including existentialism, phenomenology, the sacred texts of Zen, Taoism, Buddhism, Judaism and Christianity. In addition to contemplating the literature of the world’s great religions, Dr. Hora also read and assimilated the works of Plato, Dante, Shakespeare, Martin Heidegger, Carl Jung, Edmund Husserl, Teilhard de Chardin, Kierkegaard, James Legge, D. T. Suzuki, Krishnamurti, Mary Baker Eddy, Joel Goldsmith and Martin Buber. Dr. Hora also met with Carl Jung, Alan Watts and a Zen master to ask questions and gain insights, all of which contributed to the clarity with which he finally brought Metapsychiatry into being. In his comprehensive studies, Dr. Hora attained a profound spiritual understanding and appreciation of the healing work and teachings of Jesus, which became a cornerstone of the Metapsychiatric discipline.
By 1967, Dr. Hora had transcended the practice of traditional methods of psychiatry, having come to see that there can be no healing without God. In his own words: “All problems are psychological, and all solutions are spiritual.” Essentially, he became a “physician of the soul,” increasingly interested in guiding individuals to a spiritually centered and abundant life through which wholeness could be realized. Withdrawing from participation in professional societies, he focused all of his time and attention on responding to those who came to him with their suffering.
Thomas Hora described Metapsychiatry in the following way:
“… We have built a new road which is neither religious, nor materially scientific, nor political. We have come to understand it as an epistemological method of truth realization. Metapsychiatry came into the world to put soul into psychiatry and to breathe the life of Spirit into the ‘valley of dry bones.'”
Dr. Hora was actively engaged in his work as a spiritual guide and was teaching classes until shortly before his passing on October 30, 1995. Dr. Hora’s private counseling sessions and spiritual classes were infused with inspiring wisdom, extraordinary clarity, compassion and laughter.
It was Thomas Hora’s sincere hope that what he learned about the real nature of our difficulties and problems, and what constitutes healing and wholeness, would be a blessing to the lives of those who are receptive.