Dr. Donald Meichenbaum, of the University of Waterloo in Ontario published a paper this month showing significant links between religion, spirituality, and personal responses to trauma. Dr. Meichembaum cites a large body of evidence demonstrating that spirituality and resiliency are almost inextricably interconnected. People who participate in “an attempt to seek meaning, purpose, and direction of life in relation to a higher power,” or spiritual practices, deal with trauma better and more quickly than those who do not.
In his paper, “Trauma, Spirituality, and Recovery: Toward a Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapy,” Dr. Meichenbaum examines recent research into spirituality and mental health. He also offers case studies of people handling personal traumas through their spirituality and examines how the social constructs of organized religion and spiritual practices play out to improve recovery.
For many years, scholars avoided studies that focused on spirituality because of its subjective nature, but, as Dr. Meichenbaum, explains, “there’s probably [been] more research in the past five years than in the past 100 years.” His own research into the topic was so compelling that it lead him to create a program of psychotherapy incorporating spirituality and resiliency to deal with traumatic situations.
Read Dr. Michenbaum’s entire paper here. Learn more about spirituality, healing, recovery, and moving beyond traumatic events with these selections: