Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Exploring the therapist as a container for spiritual resonance and the observed impact on client transformation: A heuristic study
by Siegel, Irene R., Ph.D., Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, 2011, 281; 3453992
Abstract (Summary)

This was a qualitative exploratory study using the heuristic research method to define and explore spiritual resonance as applied to psychotherapy. At the start of the study, I defined the term spiritual resonance based on my own experience as a therapist working with clients. Twelve exemplary psychotherapists were recruited to explore the experience of the clinician as a container for spiritual resonance, and observations of its impact on clients’ transformation within the clinical setting. Participants experienced fluid perceptional shifts from egoic to expanded awareness. Six participants engaged in a single interview and 6 participants engaged in a 3 stage process of group and individual interviews. Data consisted of participants’ reports of personal experiences and observation of clients’ transformation, drawings, and researcher’s journaling as related to spiritual resonance. Qualitative content analysis was used to analyze data. Depictions, exemplary portraits, narrative reporting of common themes, and creative synthesis were created. Upon completion, spiritual resonance was defined as vibrational patterns of greater cosmic wholeness experienced through soul awareness; inclusive of all other forms of resonance; not component based; and transmitted multidirectionally in the energy field between therapist, client, Divine source, and Earth. Therapists felt spacious presence, peaceful, joyful, compassionate, unconditionally loving, focused in the moment, nonattached to judgment or outcome. Results indicated subtle shifts in the shared energy field may be perceived in the silent spaces using intuitive tracking skills to sense resonance with clients to finer vibrations of expanded awareness. Internal feedback mechanisms were cues for therapist intervention. Participants reported that clients felt safe, peaceful, joyful, and recognized internal wisdom as they resonated with a larger cosmic whole. Client transformation ranged from symptom alleviation to profound emotional, physical, and spiritual development, changing their world view and perception of themselves. Participants reported the unfoldment of mutual cocreative processes of spiritual development and transformation.

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Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Anderson, Rosemarie
Commitee: Blackstone, Judith, Deyhle, Annette
School: Institute of Transpersonal Psychology
Department: Global Psychology with a concentration in Transpersonal Psychology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 72/07, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Counseling Psychology, Clinical psychology, Spirituality
Keywords: Psychotherapists, Spiritual psychotherapy, Spiritual resonance
Publication Number: 3453992
ISBN: 978-1-124-62653-6
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