Hope you are ready for this! It is my most favorite Topic Ever. Doesn’t it make you just want to be a better person?
This is the study of:
- The mind’s cognitive processes and emotions.
- States of consciousness, the higher and expanded.
- Spirituality – a transcendent dimension and force
on the enhancement on the wellbeing and growth of humans.
Pioneer of Transpersonal Psychology:
- Carl Jung
- Abraham Maslow
- Roberto Assagioli
- Stanislav Grof
- Anthony Sutich.
Transpersonal Therapy emerged from early : Humanistic, Phenomenological and cognitive psychology. It incorporates the spiritual element of existence in the scientific study of humans. It relates all the supernatural and natural phenomenon. It includes mythical explanations of experiences that can not be explained scientifically. It also incorporates East and West Beliefs.
As a therapy it extends past traditional psychology as the main focus is the mind, body, spirituality and consciousness (Holistic approach in my books). This therapy looks at beyond our individual ego as a person, for example the higher state of consciousness. This can allude to the spirit realm in some contexts. It distinguishes religion and spirituality. The aim of this Therapy is to promote transcendence of the conscious mind through enabling it to reach into the unconscious mind and discover a higher self. This deeper level of thinking is achieved when an individual releases their ego centred perspective. (This is what we all want in the big scheme of things I think, well it is what I want.)
It can be seen as allowing an individual to realise and move towards their true potential to access inherent wisdom and goodness which was blocked by previous learned behaviours which kept them from it. In order to remove the block, the individuals must uncover or rid themselves of a lack peacefulness they must live in their true spirit, access their higher, natural spirit.
Transpersonal Psychology is none of the following:
- Restricted to religion
- Ideology or cult – it is open to universal experience
- New Age
- In contradiction to other models of psychology
Who would seek this type of Therapy?
- People who have lost the meaning of life – this is something that really appeals to me, especially at a time when I had lost my purpose.
- People who have had to change their beliefs about life following a crisis.
- People who are having trouble understanding life and death
- People trying to seek understanding of life
- People facing a spiritual crisis
- People challenged with taking on a new belief system different to their previous one
- People having transcendence experiences
- People confused about spirituality
The three levels of Intervention:
- Traditional Therapeutic Intervention:
- Psychoanalysis and CBT
- The focus is on the strengthening the ego and promoting adjustment to normalcy
- Existential Level:
- Humanistic and Person Centred
- Consists of contemplating issues of existence, meaning of life. And the examination of the responses to these issues,
- The individual has transcended past ego and identifies with a higher self and experiences a sense of unity with all life.
Who wouldn’t want to seek this? To me it would be wonderful.
Benefits of this Therapy:
- Holistic Approach, it looks at the body, mind and spirit as one in the need for wellbeing, growth and healing
- Assists an individual in accepting new views and attitudes of the word they live in
- Individual will understand their true potential as a higher spiritual understanding is accessible and become able to harness it.
Effects of This Therapy:
- Greater sense of peace and greater good
- A more open view
- Finding : direction, purpose and meaning of life
- Sense of Security
- Increased compassion, patience and understanding
v Clients are helped to achieve a better self esteem, self confidence and emotion well being as well as improved relationships and more. The client will hopefully gain a more spiritual awareness and a sense of their soul. The aim is to integrate spirituality into everyday life. Practitioners use a variety of Techniques to suit the client. It allows the client to deal with spiritual confusion. Holistic Interventions can include: meditation, contemplation, breath training, inward focusing, yoga.
Difference between Spirituality and Religion:
- Religion: Obedience to a belief and practices by a organised religion
- Spirituality: a transcendence experience that can be felt.
- Not fictitious
- Transcendent reality
- Focuses on : Gods/Godesses/Higher Beings/ Universal Consciousness
- The awareness on souls and the afterlife
- The universal force: energy, omnipresent and harmonious
- The relationship between soul and spirituality
- It can be in a philosophical, religious or nonreligious context.
- The Five Dimensions of Spirituality:
- Cognitive Orientation Towards Spirituality – perception of spirituality
- Experiential/Phenomenological Dimension – spiritual experiences
- Existential Well Being – the benefits of being spiritually self-aware
- Paranormal Beliefs – extra sensory power
- Religiosity – beliefs and attitudes and behaviour associated with religion or dogma.
Questions to Ask a Client about Spirituality:
v What Religion were you raised with?
- Are you still Associated with the same religion or philosophy?
- If not, what religion or philosophy do you follow now?
v Is your spirituality/Religion important to you?
v Do you believe in God? Gods?
- Are you Atheist?
- Are you Agnostic?
v Do you Believe that there is a spiritual transcendent dimension?
v Do you believe individuals have souls? – What happens to these upon death?
States of Consciousness:
v Normal, Alert, Waking:
- Cognitive, judgment
- Thoughts, perception, emotion and memories that are easy access to the mind
- Repressed thoughts, desires and judgments
- Temporary or permanent unconscious
- Beyond, but includes ego
- Spiritual or pure
- A sense of direct knowing
v Near Death Experiences
v Altered states of consciousness – out of body experiences and intuition
v Coincidences or synchronicities
Transpersonal Experiences: Altered States of Consciousness:
v Spontaneous – Natural
v Drug Induced – Medical or Illicit Drugs
Not Ordinary States of Consciousness:
v Schizophrenia – auditory and visual hallucinations
v Dreams – typical or lucid
v Transcendent Consciousness – Normal
v Dual Consciousness – everyday and transcendent
Inner Body Experience: Normal mental health and physical sense of self is maintained. Consciousness is perceived as enhanced (awareness of: intuition, inspiration, coincidences), no sense of a soul inside a body.
Intuition: A strong sense of rightness, thinking comes after decision, depends on no analysis or reason. Emotion does not influence or distort. Validated by experience and occurs spontaneously.
Out of Body Experience: normal physical and mental state is lost, alert consciousness is felt, feeling of soul being out of body – and your soul can think, see and feel. Astral Traveling or Near Death Experience. Experienced as real and is frightening and isolating because it is not the imagination.
A soul Traveller, soul travels without body while still alive. A feeling of disembodiedment, it is spontaneous, full awareness of shaking off physical body.