Excerpt About Spirituality

The Vision Needed for a New Psychology

We cannot attempt to reclaim soul for our modern understanding by returning to the ancient ways of studying soul. To abandon the wealth of knowledge developed by the various schools of psychology in the last century or so would deprive us of the powerful tools for self-knowledge developed by modern psychology. The vision needed for a new psychology must hold the ancient way of understanding soul while at the same time embracing and employing modern understanding and methods of research. Our vision must not separate psychology from spirituality or from science. As we will see, the view that recognizes the true connection of the soul to the universe can and must embrace scientific knowledge. The study of God/Being—that is, of religion, spirituality, and philosophy— has itself become alienated; it has become peripheral, disconnected from the needs and aspirations of the masses of humanity, and even from the majority of those carrying the main currents of Western thought. As part of the development that Nietzsche called the death of God, Western thought has become increasingly secular, and our understanding of the world and ourselves has turned steadily toward science and psychology. The development of modern science has captured human aspirations for at least the past century, although for a few decades psychology has increasingly been attracting our aspirations for meaning and salvation.

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