The Role of Spirituality in Mental Health Interventions: A Developmental Perspective

Liora Birnbaum, Aiton Birnbaum, Ofra Mayseless

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article presents a four-level developmental description of the extent to which clinicians apply spirituality in therapy. At the first level, clinicians begin to sense dissonance regarding their traditional, positivist worldview while conducting conventional psychotherapy, especially in cases involving life-threatening situations or loss. At the second level, clinicians open up to the possibility of the existence of a metaphysical reality and to spiritual/transpersonal beliefs expressed by clients. At the third level, clinicians may cautiously contact this transcendental reality and seek ways to utilize this dimension to access information relevant to therapy. At the fourth level, clinicians actively engage in implementing transpersonal interventions aimed at facilitating change and healing. Th ese levels of integration are delineated along with inherent changes in therapist worldview, perceived professional role, and relevant dilemmas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-73
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Transpersonal Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008


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