July 31, 2006

Spiritual Psychology

Harvard Review of Psychiatry Taylor & Francis Issue: Volume 12, Number 2 / March / April 2004 Pages: 105 - 115
An Introduction to Spiritual Psychology: Overview of the Literature, East and West
Michael Miovic [From the Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School; Psychosocial Oncology Program, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA]
This article outlines the philosophical background to spiritual psychology and selectively reviews Western and Eastern literature on the subject. The world views of theism, atheism, and agnosticism are defined and critiqued, and the boundaries of scientific knowledge discussed. The views of James, Jung, and Freud are reviewed, and the contributions of humanistic psychology noted. Contemporary spiritual psychology is then summarized with reference to recent literature on theistic psychotherapy, Buddhist psychology, mind-body medicine, and transpersonal psychology. Sri Aurobindo's work is introduced as a modern Asian perspective on theistic psychology, and his model of the relationship between the “soul” and the unconscious described. Finally, a brief clinical vignette is given.

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